“The Daniel Fast”
Consider getting your year started with prayer and fasting. Some people often start their year with the Daniel Fast. This is a great way to get focused on God’s Will over your life.
THE DANIEL FAST
Specifically, entering into an extended period of prayer and fasting at the New Year is practiced by hundreds of thousands of Christians throughout the world as we look ahead and position ourselves to receive from God.
The Daniel Fast is a biblically based partial fast. It is a method of fasting that men, women and young people all over the world are using as they enter into the spiritual discipline of prayer and fasting.
There are two anchoring scriptures for the Daniel Fast. In Daniel 1 the Prophet ate only vegetables (that would have included fruits) and drank only water. So from these scriptures we get two of the guidelines for the fast:
Only fruits and vegetables
Only water for a beverage
Then in Daniel 10 we read that the Prophet ate no meat nor any precious breads or foods and he drank no wine for 21 days. So from this scripture, we get a third guideline:
No sweeteners and no breads
Another important guideline is drawn from Jewish fasting principles, where no leaven is used during the fast. So that’s why yeast, baking powder and the like are not allowed on the Daniel Fast.
During your Daniel Fast you will have many times when you might want to “stretch the rules” a little bit. For example, even though the guidelines say we are to drink only water . . . you conclude that herbal teas are vegetables and water is water and therefore you will go ahead and drink herbal teas during the Daniel Fast.
But I encourage you to learn a powerful spiritual lesson by asking yourself (examining your heart) the question, “Why do you want the herbal teas?”
My guess is that the answer will be, “Well I just want them. I can’t drink only water. I have to have something else.”
The Daniel Fast teaches us to deny our “selves” and instead put our spirit in control over our flesh. As you plan your meals and eat your food, keep in mind that the definition of a fast is to deny food for a spiritual purpose.