From the earliest years of the church, faithful Christians have used the holy season of Lent (the 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Good Friday) as an opportunity to examine their lives, look at the suffering and sacrifice of Christ for us, and give sacrificially in response to that amazing grace. John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, called Christians to “fast, give alms, and pray,” as he believed the combination of those elements is important for the growth of our faith.
For many years, Restore Hope has offered churches and followers of Christ a guide for this season of Lent. This Fast-a-Meal program combines the three elements listed by Wesley and encourages each of us to:
Fast-A-Meal each week of Lent
Pray for the Poor during the Fast
Give Alms for the Poor to provide food, shelter, and more
“The fast I choose: is it not to share your food with the hungry, to provide shelter for the poor, and to clothe the naked?” Isaiah 58:6-9
We hope Fast-a-Meal will be a helpful addition to your spiritual journey and for your church, class, or small group as well. If you would like a flyer to post or share with others, click here.
We have prepared a daily Guide to Prayer (click here for PDF) to help you as you pray through Lent with Scripture, a weekly prayer focus, and a list of suggested actions to take in response. Each day during Lent, we will also post a Fast-a-Meal update to Restore Hope’s Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook pages for those who follow us online.
We hope you will use this Guide in conjunction with a time of fasting—intentionally skipping a meal (or, if you cannot miss a meal for health reasons, “giving up” part of your regular diet) and using the time to focus on Christ in prayer. What many have done over the years is send the money they would have spent on those meals (or on that part of their food budget) to Restore Hope—so that we might share God’s blessings with families in need.
For the cost of one meal each week during Lent, we can provide food for a family whose pantry is bare, a Bible for a family who does not have one, or much needed funds to help prevent homelessness.
You can click here to donate the proceeds of your fast to help Restore Hope help families in need.
As you participate in this Fast-a-Meal program, we pray God will deepen your faith, transform our world, and reach out to those in need. Thank you for your faithful participation and may God bless you during your spiritual journey this Lenten season.