It is day 22 and I completed my first Daniel Fast. I know some of you all have been doing this for years, but I was always so scared to do it. I love food too much and I wasn’t willing to give it up; I felt I didn’t need to replace it with nourishing food for my body. I did try it one time some years back, but I did not follow the fast like I should have, so I do really count this as my first fast. But over the past few months I have been building a stronger relationship with God and I knew I wanted to do this fast to become more discipline and continue to strengthen my relationship with Him. I am so happy I did, and I want to share a few tips and what you can do to prepare yourself for the Daniel Fast.
Tip 1: Mentally prepare yourself to get your body for this drastic change that is about to happen. Starting a fast can be very challenging. It’s like any other time you start a diet, you want to stay committed. That is also why when we jump into a diet or change of habit, by day 10 we are ready to give up. It takes time to really think about making a change to your daily life. It’s not easy and preparing for this fast was not either. I did not start on January 1 like some because I knew I was not ready. After a week, I got my mind right and was ready to take on this task.
Tip 2: Research meal plans and food prep. If you really looked inside your refrigerator, do you think you have the necessary food to start a fast as intense as the Daniel Fast for the whole 21 days? Probably not! The Daniel Fast consists of only fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and select oils. Plus, you only drink water. Half of those items I did NOT have in my pantry or refrigerator. By Googling and looking up recipes on Pinterest, I was able to find tons of recipes to help me better prepare for the fast. To take a look at the list click here. You are not able to have meat of any kind, dairy products, sweeteners, leavening items, processed/artificial foods, fried foods and solid fats. For beverages, water or cold-press juices with no sugar/sweetener. The most challenging part was that I was making it harder on myself by trying to eat as clean as possible and not cook any items, but that didn’t last long. After figuring out what I could and couldn’t do, I got the hang of it. It is also important to look at the labels, because you don’t realize how many items have a sweetener or other artificial ingredients in it. Reading the labels is key!
Tip 3: Have a someone or group of friends/family do the fast with you. I started the fast off solo and then discovered some friends were doing it also. Knowing this was great and it helped me because I needed the encouragement. I was able to help support my friends and lean on them when times got hard. And boy did they get hard! My body craves sweets because that is what I have been feeding it for years, so it was hard for me to break away. Having friends to talk to about it helped. Even going out during the nightlife, having a friend that couldn’t partake in the drinking festivities definitely helped a sista out.
Tip 4: Pray… pray…pray. There will be times that you will want to give up and prayer will help in all ways. I found different scriptures to help comfort my attitude and to maintain discipline. No lie, it was hard. But that was the lack of obedience talking. I was not aware of my strength and discipline to handle this fast.
After 21 days my body feels refreshed. I am not tired and grumpy. My attitude has changed. Now I still want some of the food that I craved before, but not as much. This was a lifestyle change for me to be better…greater than before. I had to start with this to show myself what I am capable of doing.
Love life, full of smiles