HOW TO PREPARE FOR THE DANIEL FAST
WHAT TO EXPECT
When you fast that your body detoxifies, eliminating toxins from your system. This can cause mild discomfort such as headaches and irritability during withdrawal from caffeine and sugars. And naturally, you will have hunger pains. Limit your activity and exercise moderately. Take time to rest. Fasting brings about miraculous results. You are following Jesus' example when you fast. Spend time listening to praise and worship. Pray as often as you can throughout the day. Get away from the normal distractions as much as possible and keep your heart and mind set on seeking God's face. Start to drink several glasses of filtered water each day before you start the fast.
HOW TO BEGIN SPIRITUALLY
Start with a clear goal. Be specific. Why are you fasting? Do you need direction, healing, restoration of marriage or family issues? Are you facing financial difficulties? Ask the Holy Spirit for guidance. Pray daily and read the Bible.
Preparing spiritually by confessing your sins to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas of weakness. Forgive all who have offended you and ask forgiveness from those you may have offended (Mark 11:25; Luke 11:4; 17:3-4). Surrender your life fully to Jesus Christ and reject the worldly desires that try to hinder you (Romans 12:1-2).
Deciding the type of fasting you choose is up to you. You could go on a full fast in which you only drink liquids, or you may desire to fast like Daniel, who abstained from sweets and meats, and the only liquid he drank was water. Remember to replace that time with prayer and Bible study.
We are all at different places in our walk with God. Likewise, our jobs, daily schedules, and health conditions are all different and place various levels of demand on our energy. So most importantly, whether you’ve fasted before, or this will be your first time, prayerfully consider what your fast will look like.
Your personal fast should include a level of challenge to it, but it’s very important to know your own body, know your options, and most importantly, seek God in prayer and follow what the
Holy Spirit leads you to do. Remember, the goal of fasting is not just to do without food. The goal is to draw nearer to God.
DECIDING HOW LONG
Having a successful fast starts with the right preparation. It is important to choose ahead of time what type of fast, or what combination you will pursue. Not only will this help with making the necessary preparations to implement your plan, but as you commit to a specific fast ahead of time and know how you’re going to do it, you will position yourself to finish strong.
You may fast as long as you like. You may choose to fast all or several days out of the 21 days, such as, 3 or 4 days a week or specifically on Sundays and Wednesdays. Maybe you will do that, and end with 3 to 7 consecutive days at the end. This is your personal decision, and again use wisdom and pray for guidance. Beginners are advised to start slow.
BEGIN AND BREAK THE FAST WELL
Depending on the type of fast you choose, it is very important to prepare your body ahead of time before beginning the fast. Take a week or so to transition into your fast; otherwise, you could get sick. For example, if you would like to go on a fruits and vegetables or juice fast, start eliminating meat, white grains and refined sugars from your diet the week before. Also, start to cut back quite a bit on dairy products and some of your caffeine intake.
This same principle applies to breaking your fast. When your fast is over, add foods back very gradually. Eat small portions and snacks. Your body will be so cleansed and detoxified, you will most likely get sick if you add too much rich foods, etc. all at once.
DANIEL FAST SAMPLE MENU
Breakfast – Fruits, Vegetables, Juices and Water, Fruit Smoothies with whey protein
Mid – morning Snack – Fresh Fruit or fresh vegetables
Lunch – Raw vegetable salad with light, organic dressing and vegetable broth soup
Dinner – Fresh salad with light, organic dressing and steamed or grilled vegetables
Water – Drink plenty of water – at least 100 ounces per day