21 Day Fast
Your Guide to the 21 Day Fast
This Fast will begin Monday, January 4 and end Sunday, January 24. Then, we will gather together on Sunday, January 24 for a vision night to end our fast, worship together, and hear what God has in store for C3 Church in 2021. Here’s to 2021 being the best year yet!
If you’re new to fasting or just need some fresh reminders, we’ve provided some basic info and tips in this guide to help you along the way.
What is Fasting?
Why Should I Fast?
- Jesus did it! Jesus fasted and we want to be like Him. Also – if, as the Son of God, Jesus needed to fast, how much more do we?
- Fasting gives a greater sensitivity to spiritual things. Many people notice that as they turn the volume down on some comforts and distractions of the natural world and turn the volume upon on worship, prayer, and Scripture — there is an increased sensitivity to God’s Presence, voice, and will.
- There’s power in it! One time the disciples just couldn’t get the job done. No matter how much effort, it wasn’t enough. There was no breakthrough. Jesus’ response? “This kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:21 emphasis added).” Combining the fire and gasoline of prayer and fasting can sometimes bring breakthroughs to what has seemed immovable for years.
Who Should Fast?
Why Fast Now?
What Should the focus of my Fast be?
How Should I Fast?
That being said, while it’s important to be committed on a fast, the power isn’t in what we abstain FROM; it’s what we incline our hearts and attention TO. The heart of a fast – whether a private one or like this corporate church one – is Jesus. The point is not to get bogged down so much in the legalism of the fast that we don’t seek and enjoy Jesus! The point is not just to not eat. The point is to replace the flesh with the Spirit – through more Scripture, more prayer, more journaling, more time with God. If we don’t eat and don’t spend time with Jesus, we just starve ourselves both physically and spiritually – and that’s no fun for anyone!
The point is laying something physical down to pick something spiritual up. And like King David from the Bible, we don’t “want to offer a sacrifice that costs nothing.” If you don’t like chocolate, chocolate is not the thing to fast! Choose something that will be a challenge.
If you’ve never fasted before, we hope you take your next step in fasting in which way you find challenging but doable. Once again, this is something God wants to be part of our everyday life.
What is the Daniel Fast?
The Daniel Fast is based on the fasting experiences of the Old Testament Prophet Daniel when he and his companions were captured in Israel by the Babylonians under the rule of King Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel was a man of deep faith and devoted to God. When served the food and wine of the king, Daniel didn’t want to defile his body and so requested a different meal, Daniel 1:8-21 & Daniel 10:1-3.
The Daniel Fast is a plant-based way of eating and consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, healthy oils, herbs and spices. You will also see from the verse that the only beverage on the Daniel Fast is water. From this passage, and using various translations, the standards of sweeteners (including artificial varieties), leavening agents, deep fried foods, solid fats and sweet desserts are not allowed on the Daniel Fast. It is also from this verse that we get the 21-day period.
Check below for a full list of items you can include and exclude in your fast.
What Foods can I Eat?
- All fruits. You may eat them fresh, frozen, dried, canned; just be sure there is no added sugar.
- All vegetables. You can consume your vegetables fresh, frozen, juiced or canned.
- All whole grains. It is advisable to read the labels when it comes to grains, so you are not consuming added sugar on the fast. Whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, oats, barley, grits, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, rice cakes and popcorn are all allowable foods.
- All nuts and seeds. You can have sunflower seeds, cashews, peanuts, sesame and any other member of the nut and seed family. Nut milk and nut butters are also allowed, including all natural peanut butter with no added sugar (you get used to it and it is really good!).
- All legumes. Dried beans, pinto beans, split peas, lentils, black eyed peas, kidney beans, black beans, cannellini beans, navy beans and white beans, canned or dried.
- Beverages. Water is the beverage of choice when fasting, including spring water or even distilled water if you like. You will likely make some smoothies but these will be meal replacements and using unsweetened almond, cashew or soy milk.
Foods to Exclude:
- All meat and animal products. This includes fish.
- All dairy products.
- All sweeteners. Sugar, raw sugar, syrups, molasses, and cane juice are not allowed on the Daniel Fast. Honey is a toss-up here. Some do consume it, seeing it as a natural food. Others consider it a pleasant food that Daniel would not have eaten so we leave it up to the individual.
- All leavened bread. This includes any Ezekiel Bread that contains yeast and all baked goods, commercial or homemade.
- All processed foods. Artificial flavorings, food additives, chemicals, white rice, white flour, and foods that contain artificial preservatives are forbidden.
- All deep fried foods. Examples are potato chips, French fries, and of course any breaded, fried foods.
- All solid fats. This consists of shortening, margarine, lard and foods high in fat.
- Beverages. Coffee, tea, herbal teas, carbonated beverages, energy drinks, and alcohol are all prohibited on the Daniel Fast.
*If you have any medical or allergy condition, consult with your doctor to see how this fast may affect your body.
What to Expect?
- Hunger Pangs: These are greatest usually during the first three days of the fast. Your body is adjusting from using the food in your digestive tract (which remains about three days) to consuming stored fats.
- Coldness, bad breath and heightened body odor, changes in elimination (constipation or diarrhea), lightheadedness, changes in sleeping and dreaming patterns, aches and pains.
- Also expect to go to the bathroom often (you will be drinking lots of water!)
IF AT ANYTIME YOU ARE EXPERIENCING SEVERE PAIN OR SWELLING, PLEASE STOP YOUR FAST AND CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR.
Resources to Know
Ultimate Meal Prep Plan and Recipe Spreadsheet
Pinterest - search Daniel Fast and you will find tons of recipes and ideas
Prayer Guide - Text Fast21 to 97000 to receive your daily prayer guide
Make sure to join our Messaging Group on the C3 App to find others journeying with you! Join our Facebook Group Facebook.com/groups/myc3.church to share recipes and encourage others along the way.
I was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer. The cost of treatment was totally out of range financially for my family but the lord answered my prayers in a mighty way. I wanted to share my miracle with the church but didn’t know how
Please send me the devotional.
Brian and Pam Chambers started the Daniel Fast today.
We are seeking The Lord face!