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The Daniel Fast

Dec 01, 2021

Web Daniel Fast21

As 2022 gets underway, Pastor Gregg Matte is inviting the Houston's First family to pray and fast on behalf of our church and our personal lives, as well. Read ahead to learn about fasting in general, plans for the the week of Jan 3-7 — as well as helpful resources.

Online Devotional MomentsPrayer GuidesCome-And-Go Prayer
Night of Prayer & WorshipWhat To Eat

Yes! I plan to fast this January.

What is fasting?

For Christians, fasting is the act of giving up something (food, drink, entertainment, etc.) for a certain period of time in order to increase our attention on God and what He has to say. There are more than 70 references to fasting in the Bible, and among those who fasted in the Bible are Moses, Elijah, Esther, Ezra, Job, David, Daniel, Peter, Paul — and even Jesus.

Many people equate "fasting" with simply "not eating" — but there are several different types of fasts. A Daniel Fast, for example, is considered a partial fast, allowing you to consume certain types of food and drink (PDF). The fast is based on one that Daniel followed:

  • Daniel 1:12 — "Please test your servants for 10 days. Let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink."
  • Daniel 10:1-2 — "In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia, a message was revealed to Daniel, who was named Belteshazzar. The message was true and was about a great conflict. He understood the message and had understanding of the vision. In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for three full weeks."

Fasting is letting go of a physical need for a spiritual plea.

— Pastor Gregg Matte

Jan 3-7

While the staff and Deacons participate in a Daniel Fast the week of Jan 3-7, 2022, Pastor Gregg invites you to do so along with them that week. That week will include:

Online Devotional Moments

Each day at 12 noon (Central), join with Pastor Gregg online for a 30-minute devotional moment as he has a conversation with the following guests:

You can tune in here:

Come-And-Go Prayer

The Chapel at The Loop Campus will be open for come-and-go prayer on your own from 9a-9p on Mon-Fri. Our prayer guide will be available there, too

Night of Prayer & Worship

On Thu, Jan 6, from 6:30-8p, everyone is welcome to attend a Night of Prayer & Worship at The Loop Campus. You can register for childcare (birth-5th grade) here.

Prayer Guides

During your fast — whether for one meal or longer — join with Pastor Gregg, staff members, and Deacons as we pray for our personal lives and our church. Pastor Gregg and the others will follow a prayer guide during their five-day fast (Jan 3-7). We invite the church family to pray following the same guide during your fast — whenever and for however long that might be!

Download the prayer guides and resources for the entire week:

Or, download individual documents:

What To Eat

The Daniel Fast is a partial fast, allowing you to eat a wide variety of foods. You can find a list of food and drinks that comply with the fast here. Essentially, you can eat:

  • All fruits
  • All vegetables
  • All whole grains
  • All nuts and seeds
  • All legumes
  • All quality oils

Other Times

If you do not follow the fast that week, that's OK! You can choose to participate in a fast on any dates of your choosing in January. In particular, Pastor Gregg suggests three options as you consider how you will join in on this churchwide fast:

  • Follow the Daniel Fast for 5 days or longer
  • Fast at least one day in January
  • Fast at least one meal in January

Resources

Timothy Ateek, Executive Director of Breakaway Ministries, spoke about fasting when he was our guest speaker at Houston's First in the summer of 2020. Watch his message below — "Feeling Full from Going Hungry."

The following resources were compiled by Houston's First staff members and other contributors to help you and your family if you opt to follow a Daniel Fast:

  • List of foods to include and avoid on the Daniel Fast (download PDF)
  • The Daniel Fast board on Houston's First's Pinterest page (visit board)

The following external resources are not associated with Houston's First, but they might provide you with additional information and ideas — especially recipes! Some of these websites reference registering for a Daniel Fast in January, but those are separate from the one we're doing at Houston's First.

CornerBooks

Finally, CornerBooks at The Loop Campus has books to borrow if you want to learn even more. These titles are available to borrow for free using your CornerBooks library card. If you do not already have a card, fill out this form to gain access to over 14,000 titles in their collection! (Each title's call number is provided in parentheses so you can locate it on the shelves, but don't hesitate to ask a CornerBooks staff member or volunteer for assistance if needed!)


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