First things first: watch this 6 minute video of an excerpt of Craig's message this Sunday at LifeChurch explaining what fasting is all about and what kind of spiritual benefit it can give us if we put God first in our year though fasting. I've done fasting in the past, but it's only this year that I'm going to join in a church-wide, collective prayer and fasting campaign. So consider me a newbie on this one, too. We're joining LifeChurch.tv for a 21-day fast as we at LifeChurch Makati place God first in our calendar to seek him and put him first this year. For newbies like me, you probably are asking a lot of things on how a typical fast works. The best way to explain this is how I'm planning to do it. Daniel fast There are different kinds of fasting. Others skip one meal a day, others will not eat during the day. LifeChurch.tv is promoting the "Daniel fast" based on Daniel 10. In my opinion, it's the best way to go for newbies. It basically doesn't involve skipping of meals but a change of diet. While changing of diet is as challenging as skipping meals, it can be an easier route to experience fasting without pushing yourself too hard.
What kind of food shall I eat and not eat for the Daniel fast?
My summary for the Daniel fast is simple: Vegetarian diet (no fried stuff, just grilled and steamed) + brown rice + water. You can view a more comprehensive list here. Obviously, if you're a vegetarian, this is not going to be a fast for you *grin*. So, do other types of fast, like skipping a meal for the day. But for majority of us, not drinking coffee for 21 days is fasting already. So, doing a Daniel fast is a great way to "deprive our body with normal food". Take note that if you have a medical condition, it's wise to consult your doctor first before doing the Daniel fast.
What will I do during the 21-day fast.
Obviously, I'll do my normal daily routine. But for the 21-day fast, I'm going to try to increase my normal quiet time in the morning to devote myself to seeking God's heart. I'm also planning to use YouVersion's 21-day fast reading plan to guide me through my daily devotional. It's a great way to be in line within the process. If you haven't used YouVersion yet when reading your Bible and creating Bible Reading Plans, I encourage you to start a free account now. It can be downloaded to your mobile phone or just read through your normal web browser.
Needless to say, I'm excited to start my year with this tradition. I am praying that I make it until day 21. If not, I know God is merciful :) Nonetheless, the idea is to fast to seek God's heart, to be in tune with his will as I start my year focused on living a life of worship of him. I encourage you to join us in this 21-day fast.
If you have any questions, just ask below. If I know the answer, I'll try to give an answer. If I don't, I'll try to research for you ;)