Monday, September 10, 2007

Daniel Fast begins

The wandering of my mind this afternoon...

Well, this is it. My church is starting today. I'm almost afraid to admit it out loud for fear of failure. Y'know how it goes...maybe if I don't TELL anyone I'm giving something up, then if I DO slip up, no one is the wiser, thinks less of me, could care less. *sigh*

Just being transparent here, people.

I'm thinking the dessert-fast is insufficient. I had relatively little issue with giving up chocolate, caffeine and the like while nursing the Vikings. So how much "sacrifice" is that really? And, I'm feeling pulled to do m-o-r-e. Have no idea how I'll do it...which is a little freaky for a big-time organizer/planner/list maker as myself.

While I initially figured giving up sweets would be sufficient (and isn't that an issue all unto itself - that I'm looking for "sufficient" instead of OBEYING *sigh*), once I googled up information of what a serious
Daniel fast menu entails- I'm feeling hugely convicted that I was already thinking of ways to "get around" the fast "rules."

I'm clueless to how to integrate this into a home situation where I prep and cook for everyone else and have all the food I will not be allowed to eat around constantly. Trying to discipline the Vikings to eat what I prepare and to realize that Momma won't be making them special and/or separate meals may provoke behavior problems when Momma "gets" to eat other things than what DaHubby and them are eating.

So, I guess that I'm doing a "Vikings-modified" Daniel fast. I will abstain and modify as much as one can. Not that convenience is the deciding factor, but as a repeatedly, mostly-unsuccessful dieter, I don't want to set myself up for failure and/or additional problems.

So, it will not only be desserts but also meat and "rich"/processed foods as well.

Simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pray, pray, pray.

Seek, seek, seek.

Discipline, discipline, discipline.

Part of this fasting season includes a schedule of Scriptures chosen by our pastors that we will all be reading at the same time. If you are interested, I'll share those as well.

I'm excited, freaked, frightened, thrilled, anticipating great things, scared that God may actually "show up" goes on and on.

Your prayers would be coveted.


Anonymous said...

o My. I can so relate to that fear of failure and not annoucing things. I have, just today, quietly deleted those May Day Challenges and 5 pounds lost logos from my blog. Needless to say I found the once lost 5 pounds and plus a few. *groan* Where's the logo for that??

You will do wonderfully on your fast. I will keep you up in prayer. I am going to go find that link about the exact guidelines to the Daniel fast. I don't think I have ever seen that before. Many Blessings!! ((Hugs))

Unashamed said...

Beth, honey, don't get mad at me ok? I'm just wondering, why are you doing this? I read the original post and I sort of get the premise...but does it have to be food that you fast? Because really, food in and of itself doesn't "defile" you. Jesus said it's not what we put into our mouths that defiles but rather what comes out of our mouths (because what comes from the mouth proceeds from the heart). Of course Jesus wasn't talking about our eating habits, he was talking about the legalistic religious requirements that the Pharisees burdened the people with.

The problem isn't with what we're putting in, even symbolically. The problem is with our hearts, and the only thing that can fix our hearts is the grace of God.

I don't think what you need is more religious requirements. I think what you need is more Jesus. More Gospel. More grace. If you think that a fast will get you there, then great! Just make sure you're doing it for the right reasons, 'kay?

Beth/Mom2TwoVikings said...

Anita - I'm not sure where to begin because I feel like I'm stepping out in faith with a desire to obedient to what I'm feeling and a desire to join in unity with my church family at the guidance of my pastors to whom I'm submitted to their leadership.

Ultimately, Pastor Deb feels at the beginning of August, God was directing her to read Daniel. She explained last Sunday that Daniel knew the old prophecies and was seeing them come to pass. So, he wanted to remain sanctified for the Lord despite being forced to live/go to "school" in the Babylon court of Nebuchadnezzar.

Pastor Deb felt she received multiple confirmations over the next few weeks as she told Pastor Don, our elders, and some folks in leadership. So, with Pastor Don's endorsement, she feels that if we want to break through this recent season of "growing pains", rejoin as one body, refocus on Christ's job for us, we need to study some scriptural prophecy and have a period of fasting and prayer to prepare.

And, while this is no scripture directing Christians to fast, Jesus did say *when* you fast so it could be assumed we'd do it occasionally! LOL

It has been made abundantly clear to all of us that this is optional and that we can fast anything from a meal a day, a type of food, some other thing like TV, entertainment, the Internet, etc. The only thing the pastors requested we honor is the daily scripture readings they put together so that everyone was reading the same thing at the same time.

Also, it's a matter of disciplining ourselves, bringing our bodily desires under submission of the spirit, and bringing ourselves up to a higher level of faith.

It's ultimately about being obedient (which is better than the sacrifice 1 Sam 15.22) to God's will for you, I guess.

If it helps, I found three links herehere, hereherehere, and here that sound very similar to what we've been taught recently. And, I would agree with the one that says this is being honored more as a celebration than a mourning. We're expecting great things as a result so we wait in anticipation...

Hope all that all makes sense...

Unashamed said...

Yes, it does make sense now. Not knowing the backstory, I didn't quite understand what was going on. Luther called fasting "fine outward training" and understood its spiritual benefits, but he was staunchly opposed to obligatory fasting (such as was practised by the RC church at the time of the Reformation). I was sort of alarmed because I wasn't sure if this was an imposed fast, or voluntary or what. So I'm greatly relieved and I sure hope that I didn't discourage you with my questioning! I will gladly pray for and with you, that this fast may be spiritually beneficial to you personally and to your brethren as a whole. May God do a mighty work through this!

Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed reading the other comments as there is good wisdom in the questions here.

Regarding the foods themselves... God knows where your heart is on this matter. Stay true to Him and you will draw nearer, no matter the adaptions... you make in the eating.