Saturday, January 24

Fasting, part 1

One time I fasted in high school, but after missing 1.5 meals I was non-functional. In college I heard about the "Daniel Fast" (only consuming veggies and water) and gave that a try. At the end of the day I was sick and it took the entire next day to recover. As an adult, if I miss lunch I'm generally shaky, nauseous and headachy by late afternoon. I'm a danger on the road and I can't think straight. I can't even fall asleep on an empty stomach.

When my EMI trip leader suggested I fast when we were discussing my search for a job, I rejected the idea. However, there's a lot going on in my head right now. Many decisions for me, for others concerning Ben and I, and beginning new things are coming up; I'm lost in a cloud of speculation much of the time. An ideal time to fast if ever, correct? From what I hear fasting provides a setting for serious conversations with God and biologically, not receiving food clears the mind. But what would fasting look like for me?

I've decided for me, fasting means reducing my focus on food as much as possible, so that focus can be on God instead. Specifically:

  1. Planning out meals ahead of time of the fasting period

  2. Eating simple foods which take very little time to prepare

  3. Getting enough protein, vitamins and carbs in my system to keep it going

  4. Eating foods that are neutrally to moderately tasty, so that there is no focus on dislike of the food or difficulty eating it but

  5. Making no effort to make the foods more interesting - no seasonings, oils or butter, sugars, etc.

  6. Limiting the variety of foods eaten

  7. Not eating anything for pleasure - no chocolate, tea, garlic, etc.

  8. Eating at regular meal times with portions a bit smaller than usual

There will be things on the menu like plain scrambled eggs, lots of steamed vegetables, plain brown rice, black beans, apples, milk, broth, and coffee (1 c a day plain, so that caffeine withdrawal doesn't affect my concentration!). Sort of a decadent fast I know, but that's what it will take!

I've shared this in hopes that others weak like me can take heart and be creative. Later on, I'll let you all know what I will be praying about.



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