Today our community at Adore is holding their Second Annual 21-Day Challenge of Fasting and Prayer.
Have you ever fasted before? I mean on purpose, not by accident or because you ran out of food and didn’t feel like going to the grocery store so you made it through the evening by ignoring the hunger pangs and waiting until morning.
Here in Canada we are so blessed to have so much food and variety of food right at our fingertips! I mean really, for only a few dollars we could eat a day’s worth of calories; they wouldn’t be all that great for you probably, but it can be done. And for those of us with steady employment do we take it for granted that we can go shop for whatever foods we desire or go out to eat at a restaraunt almost any time?
I have never fasted before…let alone missed a meal if I could help it. I admit it, I like food. I like the socal aspect of eating out with friends and family, of hosting people in my home for a meal or snacks. I like the taste of (almost) anything, I like the ritual of preparing and eating something yummy. I just plain old like food.
What goes right along with that admission is the fact that I’ve always struggled with weight issues. I don’t have one of those magical metabolism that a handful of lean people have where they can eat anything and stay trim and I haven’t gained or learned the strong mental and self-control it takes to keep myself fit and not always at least a bit overweight.
So the challege for me this month is going to be extremely difficult. I reasearched for a quite a while and prayed about it and I am going to try something I’ve never tried before – my very first fast. Maybe you think this is crazy and you don’t understand it, but I will be careful and be smart about my health, don’t worry. There are many resources out there about fasting and I know I will also have support and help from my Adore community and pastors.
I’ve decided that an entire 21-day fast with nothing but water and liquid would be extremely difficult and I doubt I would last, but I also think that just pairing down to say something like a “Daniel Fast” (only water with as much fruits, veggies and nuts as you want) might also be difficult in that I think I would slip up more often because I would be eating and would easily fall back into eating something I shouldn’t.
So what to do? I then found a medial blog about fasting and I got and idea about a possible plan that just might work for me. The plan is 8-3-10: 8 days of water and juice (supposed to be freshly made veggie juice, but I’ll do my best), then 3 days to slowly come off of it and ease your body back into solids, then 10-days of something like the “Daniel Fast”. This plan gives your body 8 days to cleanse itself (it takes the first 3 to get rid of any food previously eaten!) and then slowly gets you back to where you can start eating healthy and still stay off the heavy garbage from before.
I want to do this. I want to do it not just to try and kick start my new year with a few pounds lost (though that is a great bonus), but I want to do this to give up something and to learn to trust God daily instead of just when I need Him when something goes wrong. I want to try it. I may fail, I mean I really do expect myself to fail, but I want to at least try it.
I’ll be posting daily to let you know how I’m doing and to keep my hands and mind busy on something other than eating. But I also want to use my blog to be accountable so I won’t give up.
I can update you all right now to say that it’s 3:30 pm on Monday and I am getting my very first hunger pangs. Ouch! It’s the really squnichy kind that I can almost hear crackling behind my ears. Do you ever get those kind?
I have some fruit juices in the house but I’m going to go out soon and buy some healthy vegetable juices and broths, too. (Apparently a trick is to drink a big glass of water first then then some juice.)
I am also going to take a trip to the Michael’s craft store and pick up some new yarn and try to learn how to knit a scarf. That’s my new ‘keep my hands busy’ project for this week!
Pray for me – pray that I stay strong and rely on God to help me through. And pray that I have the courage to stick with this and not give in and fail too quickly. I’m praying for any of you who are doing some sort of fast, too. It’s not too late to start!
I’ll keep you posted on my progress!