“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31 ESV
Welcome to Day 18 of 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting! As we approach the end of this journey, let us not forget what we have learned. For those of us decreasing something in our lives to increase the presence of God, let’s carry some of that onward. Let’s hold onto the victory, rather than leaping into a Fast Aftermath, Superbowl Sunday frenzy, so excited to “go back to normal,” that we forget the purpose of these 21 days.
We can’t speak to everyone’s fast, but for most of us, this journey has had something to do with food restriction. Before you jump into Sunday with a 32oz mug of a sugar-laden latte, Superbowl buffalo fried wings, a six pack of beer, two cartons (let’s be honest: we share your cravings!) of mint chocolate-chip ice cream and a double-decker beef burger, let’s pause for a moment. [insert screeching tire sound here] This type of restriction was about growing closer to God, saying “no” to the flesh, and hearing more clearly from Him, right? Well, we propose that this was also about eating God’s way: Learning how to eat in moderation, incorporating a more nutritious and balanced diet, and treating our bodies like the Holy Spirit Temples they truly are. According to 1 Corinthians, whatever you do- including eating and drinking– should be done unto the Glory of God. Scripture does not stipulate that this way of life is restricted to the duration of a fast. This is a way of life that God’s Word instructs us to carry throughout our lives!
Therefore, let’s take what we have learned, build upon it, and apply it going forward. Maybe you can take a break from one meal a week to spend some extended time in prayer. Perhaps skip that lunch out with co-workers, filled with negativity and gossip, and take a walk or sit in your car during lunch to soak in worship music. Make a shift to dessert only on special occasions or Friday nights as a “special treat.” Instead of restaurants being a staple in your diet, try keeping them down to once a month. This way you can save money and know what’s in the food you’re eating.
If you feel that little voice in your gut saying, “you probably shouldn’t be eating this,” listen to that. It may be the Holy Spirit guiding you in discernment. The more you listen to that voice, the more sensitive to it you will become. The more you ignore it, the quieter it will get… until you find yourself asking, “why can’t I hear God?” Don’t shut Him out! He wants to be involved in every aspect of your life. Your health is important to Him, too.
For incorporations at home, try to keep food as close to its natural state as possible. Don’t “drink your calories” by consuming sugary drinks. Keep wine/beer/loaded coffee and fruit juice to a minimum. Instead, drink more water. 60-70% of your body is made of water- this is a vital nutrient! Many of us are walking around dehydrated and don’t even realize it. By the time you’re thirsty, your body is already dehydrated. You may be damaging your body, so drink up!
When cooking, swap out butter for apple sauce, pumpkin puree, all-natural almond butter, or olive oil. Swap out sugar in recipes for pureed sweet potatoes, date honey, or mashed bananas. Swap out all-purpose flour for something with more nutrients, like oat flour, buckwheat flour, brown rice flour, or even almond flour. When swapping out ingredients for healthier alternatives in recipes, try one ingredient at a time to see if you notice a difference. Then add more swaps to each meal. You will be surprised how fast your taste buds adjust to the new flavor!
If you don’t have time to cook from scratch, start reading the ingredient labels. If you cannot pronounce what’s in the food, don’t buy it. You wouldn’t put cheap gas in your Ferrari and expect it to run at its highest potential… so don’t put garbage in your body and expect it to function optimally! Put premium gas in that temple, friend! Your body will thank you.
For some other suggestions for healthier eating, or why you should eat clean, check out our Fuel Thoughts page.
Thank you for joining us for Day 18 ‘in the life’ of our fast here at RISENfitness. We are learning how to avoid the ‘Fast Aftermath’ right beside you:)
Here’s to your Health and 21 Day Fast!