Sunday, January 22, 2012

Day 11-21- Daniel Fast

What's My Assignment Now?

Well today, is the last of the fast and I'm going to keep it short. This is a beginning to a whole new outlook in my life. I purposedly did not post for the second half of the fast so that I could force myself to go into a quiet place. A zone that I much needed. I realized I was so focused on what food, I would try. The true 'substance' of the fast was being masked.  In a zone I was forced into a quiet path; which helped me to focus on my walk with God. I'm very thankful for this experience. With the many distractions and temptations; I stayed obedient and stepped across these obstacles with grace.

Besides, learning how to be cautious of what goes into my body; I have become cautious of what goes into my mind. I can recognize the moment of a negative thought creeping into my mindset and quickly I shift that thought out. I begin to pray and go into the arms of my Lord; a place allowing me to overcome any obstacle as long as I focus on him.

"His leading is only for those who are already committed to as He may choose. To such it may be said: "God is able to speak loud enough to make a willing soul hear." "
-Lewis Sperry Chafer

Now willing, in submission to God's will; I'm moving forward into a transition stage. I hope to maintain these tools as I reflect on the strengths I've achieved along this walk. I know that each day brings a new assignment. But, walking in tuned helps to accomplish the task with 'power and grace'.

If you can give yourself a challenge, today- do so; you'll never know your true 'power' potential until you try.

Jesus full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert,
where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the
end of them he was hungry… Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about
him spread through the whole countryside. He taught in their synagogues, and everyone praised
him. – Luke 4:1-2, 14-15, NIV

Stay tune to Creatively Saving for future posts.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Day 11-Daniel Fast

This is going to be short and sweet. I've entered into a zone of meditation. It's that quiet place you retreat to when you are in deep concentration. I've learned sometimes, silence is not a sign of trouble. Silence can be a sign of STRENGTH. Silence is needed in order for clarity and resolution to come through. Be Blessed everyone! 

The Parable of the Sower

4 And when a great multitude had gathered, and they had come to Him from every city, He spoke by a parable: 5 “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it. 6 Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture. 7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it. 8 But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold.” When He had said these things He cried, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Luke 8: 4-8

The Parable of the Sower Explained

11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. 13 But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. 14 Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. 15 But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.-Luke 8: 11-15 New Kings James Version

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Day 10

We are at the half-way point!!!! A round of applause to us all!!! I just tried a smoothie. I took strawberries, pineapples, ginger and threw them in the blender! It was actually very good! My kids are pretty good guineau pigs. They smiled and gave me the approval! So I will definately have to make some again. Today's topic- "Unwavering Faith".

"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in fath, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is double-minded man, unstable in all his ways."- James1: 5-8

Wow! I read this passage and said to myself. "How many times do we ask God for something and he reveals it to us- and we question him when he answers?" The reason we question is because we have not come to the point of true submission to what God has for us.

I know there are times I struggle with this very thing. Recently, I made the decision to become a full time freelance graphic designer and illustrator. I have been commissioned on and off throughout the year to complete various projects. But, when my work from home position of seven years was eliminated; I felt angry. I went through a mixture of emotions. But, secretly I was asking God to use me in a way that I could use my talents to bring joy to many! I ASKED him to give me the ability to remain flexible to stay at home with my children and to be able to still have a source of income to provide for my household needs. When he answered with my position being eliminated; I went through various emotions that paralyzed me with fear. God answered me in his way. NOT in the way I expected. It wasn't until I came to the point of 'true submission' that I realized that I was in a better place. My body was giving me signs of being stress free. I would get a knock on my door here and there giving me leads to new projects.

You have to BELIEVE that you are BLESSED, you will PROSPER, you are FAVORED! "I can do all things through Christ who STRENGTHENS me!"- Phillipians 4:13

Everyone- BE BLESSED! and continue to BELIEVE that you can accomplish all through Christ who will strenghthen you!

Day 9 meals
Breakfast: Cream of wheat w/ Strawberries and raisins
Lunch: Whole Grain Corn tacos, w/ Veggie Sausage Patties, Sliced Yellow Peppers, Raw Spinach, with Salsa
Dinner: Cabbage Stir Fry with mixed veggies- red peppers, zucchini, grean beans - over brown rice
Snacks: Apple, cashew, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Day 9-Daniel Fast

The end of Day 8 ended well, especially when my youngest asked; "Why are you guys not eating any candy?" "Are you on a diet?" My husband and I smiled. We began to explain how we are making a choice not to eat some foods and focus on the foods that are natural and really good for us. We want to take the time out to choose the foods we NEED more than we WANT.

"For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace." -Romans 8:5-6, NKJV

Wow! Day 9 and I feel like I have a control over the NEED of something versus the WANT of something. As our family is having the conversation of 'new habits' of eating. My son says, "I feel bad for you." From a 7year old's perspective; I guess it would seem sad. Not having something that you WANT when you WANT IT--may seem unfair. But, this was a perfect opportunity to teach them that though we THINK we WANT something we may not actually really NEED it. My husband explained, "Things taste different. You don't even miss the sugary things you thought you needed".

It's the vitamins and minerals of natural foods we eat which gives us strength and health. And with the 'word of God' - it sustains me. I can't but help think about what is going on right now in our world. The NEED for a brand new car. The NEED for a high-paying job. The NEED for name brand clothes. These NEEDS have buried the truth. And the truth is that we can have sustenance with the basic necessities of life. But, we need to purge the belief systems of WANTING and really see the true NEEDs in our life! Be blessed everyone!

Day 8 Meals
Breakfast: Apples, Raisins w/ bowl of Cream of Wheat
Lunch: Homemade Butternut Squash and Carrot, Cabbage, Celery, w/ wheat penne
Dinner: Wheat Penne Pasta, Spaghetti Sauce w/ crushed tomatoes, Garlic with a Spring Mix and Spinach Salad w/ yellow peppers, carrots, dried Cranberries
Snacks: Cashews, Sunflower Seeds, Dried Cranberries- trial mix, Organic Popcorn

Monday, January 9, 2012

Day 7 and 8- Daniel Fast

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. - James 5:16, NKJV

Thank You for one week and now we are on the second week of the fast. Im still feeling very energized. There were many little distractions throughout the week but, were quickly controled with a short and powerful prayer as I called on the name JESUS! I felt the energy flow through me. I moved forward. I see the shift in the mind and cautiously watch the words I speak. I know I am able. I am speaking life into my home and onto my children. And as I do this, my focus is on the scripture...
"The tongue has the power of life and death..."- Proverbs 18:21NIV

You ever notice that there are days you feel that drag you down but, a person may come along and speak life into you. They encourage you in a way that they don't even know. Be encourage as you go about your day. Doesn't matter what your battle is! You will prevail if you speak life into yourself. The more you speak POSITIVELY the more positive surrounds you; building a wall of steel that eventually can not be penetrated with mud. Be Blessed!

Day 6 Meals
Breakfast--- Apple, homemade seasoned potatoes w/ sliced red peppers
Lunch---Homemade squash Soup with carrots, celery, cabbage, with wheat penne served w/ side of veggie chips
Dinner---More Homemade Soup

Day 7 Meals
Breakfast---Bowl of Cream of Wheat topped with Strawberries, Blueberries, and Sliced Apples
Lunch--- Oven Roasted Potatoes with sliced red peppers
Dinner---White Corn Taco Shells filled with Garden Veggie Patties mixed with Grilled Chicken Pattie- sliced and topped with Spinach, tomatoes, yellow peppers
Snack--Organic Popcorn, Veggie Chips, Green Ginger Tea

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Day 6- Daniel Fast

I am going to keep this really short.
I woke up bright and early for a walk. I met my lovely dear friend, Mrs. Linda. I couldn't help but feel so energetic this morning! I really enjoy these walks because they always leave me feeling so alive and wanting more. We can go an hour or more at times walking and I never realize where the time goes. 5 miles later, my legs are telling me to slow down! Day 6! Now we are in a routine. It feels good! I feel as if a weight has been lifted from me- I didn't even realize that I was feeling that heavy. I made a squash soup and got to to share it with my lovely sister Mrs. Nadia! I ended my day with a massage to keep me in my zone. Now, it's off to bed to snuggle up to my bear! Good night all!!!

Day 5 Meals
Breakfast... sliced apples, cup of herbal tea w/ fresh lemons
Snack: Veggie n white corn tortilla chips, with a pear
Lunch: Sweet potatoes, with cinnamon n ginger
Dinner Ezekial bread w/ veggie pattie, topped with spinach, tomatoes

Friday, January 6, 2012

Day 5- Daniel Fast

We'll we are on Day 5 of the fast. I spent today going to the store to stock up on some fruits and vegetables. I also like to take that opportunity to come up with some ideas for meals during my trip to the store. Todays' revelation- We are a society of 'Fillers"! Every label I read, made me realize that there is to many fillers and not enough of the "good stuff"! So I started to think about how we are paying more for less. And that made me think about the "veils" we wear each day. Sometimes we wear our veils when we are dealing with religion. We want to see only what makes us feel comfortable. We wear veils on the job. Because, to unveil ourselves may mean that we are left vulnerable to judgement. When Christ walked this earth, he had to walk in truth. Today, I was forced to look at the details of what is going into my body. I want only the "truth" to fill me not the "preservatives", or "fillers". Trust that today he will fill you with only the natural truth.

"But their minds were hardened. For to this day, when they read the old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their hearts. But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom."
2 Corinthians 3:14-17

Be blessed Everyone!!!!

Day 4 Meals
Breakfast Kamut Puff Cereal with unsweetened soy milk and blueberries (not so good)
Lunch Leftover Brown rice, mixed veggies with a grilled veggie pattie.
Snack Cashews mixed with Sesame seeds and Dried Cranberries
Dinner Whole wheat pasta with veggies, sweet potatoes sprinkled with cinnamon.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Day 4- Daniel Fast

Ok. I finally got the buzzing voice out of my ear. And now it's day 4 of the fast, I find myself in a mode of feeling content.

Content: ready to accept something: 
willing to accept a situation or comply with a proposed course of action.

"Willing".... How many of us are willing when a challenge is proposed to us to accept and surrender to the task? I mean in the days prior to the fast, I found myself excited. I kept thinking of various recipes I could try. Then the voices of "unbelief" crept in - trying to steal my joy. Then a sense of empowerement took over.

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Phillippians 4:13)
When you reach the moment of "willingness" - your spirit becomes still. You've taken that breath of fresh air and you in a relaxed state. Some might call it - 'Your in a zone'.

"I believe firmly, that the moment our hearts are emptied of PRIDE and SELFISHNESS and AMBITION and SELF SEEKING, and everything that is contrary to God's law, the Holy Ghost will come and fill every corner of our hearts; but if we are full of pride and conceit, and ambition and self seeking, and pleasure of the world, there is no room for the Spirit of God; and I believe many a man is praying to God to fill him when he is FULL already with something else. Before we pray that God would fill us, I believe we out to pray Him to empty us." - D.L. Moody

How powerful is that? This journey for me thus far; makes me think of how we carry so much 'clutter' that we are not even aware we are already FULL. We have indigestion and are walking around looking for a quick fix- a pill to mask the signs that tell us we need to take a course of action. We need to get rid of our 'clutter' and fill ourselves with nourishment.

"As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, "The voice of one crying in the wilderness; 'Prepare the way of the Lord, make this paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall become straight, and the rough places shall become level ways, and all flesh shall see the salvation of God." - Luke 3: 4-6

There is definately a shift occuring. So much; that even my children are involved. I've always told my boys that they should drink plenty of water. Eat their vegetables. The usual, "Hey, put that candy down! Grab an apple!" I get why they look at me with crazed eyes. Thinking to themselves that they only mimick the actions of their parents. Interestingly, the house is now  full of fruits and natural snacks. My husband and I will tease them and say, "Your eating mom and dad out of house and home". But Im tickled, when I have to replensh my bin with plenty of more fruits and vegetables. I don't mind that they are eating of  'good fruit'.

And the earth brought forth grass, the herb that yields seed according to its kind, and the tree that yields fruit, whose seed is in itself according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. _Genesis 1:12

Well today, I'm focused on removing the clutter and replenishing with my soul with powerful antioxidants. How are you refueling your mind, body, and soul?
Until next time!

Day 3 Meals
Breakfast: bowl of cream of wheat, topped with apples and strawberries, sprinkled with cinnamon
Snack: Slice of Ezekiel Bread (who knew) topped with organic peanut butter, and sliced strawberries
Lunch: Leftover pasta/ with chunky pasta sauce with fresh, diced tomatoes and a garden salad with cherry tomatoes, carrots, cuccumbers topped with  olive oil and vinegar and black pepper
Snack: Mixed of corn tortilla chips/veggie chips
Dinner: Jasmine Brown rice, with vegetable medley- zucchini, brocolli, carrots, red peppers, sweet corn....with a veggie, grilled pattie.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Day 3- Daniel Fast

And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very
hour. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” So
Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a
mustard seed, you will say to this mountain,
╩╗Move from here to there,╩╝ and it will move; and
nothing will be impossible for you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and
fasting. - Matthew 17:18-21, NKJV

This is definately one of my favorite scriptures in the Bible. I have always been curious of the POWER that Jesus had to be able to maintain such a graceful composure. To utter the words  in Matthew 17: verse 17 ...."O Faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me."

Jesus was approcahed with a child who suffered from epilepsy and was possessed by a demon. Now, Im not sure if during that era maybe the crowd saw the disease of epilepsy as demonic. But, let's focus on the calmness of Christ. He utters the word "Bring him here to me." And speaks HEALING over the child. In amazement the disciples questions why they were not able to have that power. Jesus breaks it all down to 'BELIEF'.

Amazing how simple, and graceful life can be when answers are given. But, being in the midst of maybe a choice,  or trial there is much confusion and chaos. You may even physically feel heavy with the burden.

Im starting to see the difference of being caught up in the every day chores of life and really taking the moment to inhale and take in the essence that you are surrounded by. It's a sense of RELIEF.

It's the third day of the fast, and Im just now seeing the POWER of grace. I'm still craving that piece of chocolate. Instead of it dancing in my head; it stares at me in a game daring me. But, I empower myself by walking away from the confrontation with Mr. Chocolate -because I know that God is in control. I BELIEVE that I am capable of walking on this journey with him. After all, I've literally packed my bags and I have my ticket. I've boarded the plane and I'm already buckled in. I'm not going anywhere until I get to my destination! I have gotten rid of the 'unbelief' that was trying to distract my focus. The importance of the process is really to find a connection to God that will take you to the path you are destined to be in.

"...Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people." Luke 2: 10  The most important phrase... 'FEAR NOT'

In preparing for this fast; I kept asking myself- 'WHAT ARE YOU WORTH?' While fear and unbelief may try to pull for my attention. I know that what goes into my body should be nutritious and sustaining. Prior to this fast, I wanted to grab a hold of my 'WANTS', chocolate, cookies etc...
I would tell myself, 'you deserve it. enjoy'. That's fine, but, when you overindulge and you start to regret the choice of that 'want' and then you begin to ask, "WAS IT WORTH IT?"

I don't know about you but, I still feel like 'Why not?' There is nothing wrong with enjoying yourself - just as long as you are not being greedy. Understanding the repercussion of your choices makes a difference in the final outcome. I have made a choice to say NO to my 'WANTS' so that I can quiet myself to listen to my actual 'NEED'. I've placed myself on paused during the fast. My body felt sluggish and heavy prior. Now, although, a bit cranky; I don't have any feeling of heaviness. I wonder if we stop and ask ourselves - WHAT ARE WE WORTH? How many would take the challenge to actually INVEST in their body to remove the heaviness. We are only given ONE life. Make the best of it! Until tomorrow- Enjoy!

Day 2 Meals
Breakfast- Bowl of mixed fresh strawberries, blueberries, 2 veggie sausages-
Snack- apple, veggie chips & corn tortilla chip mixed
Lunch- leftover cornmeal with cabbage and pepper stir fry
Snack- whole cashews, dried cranberries, sesame seed trail mix
Dinner- whole wheat linguine, fresh pasta sauce with diced tomatoes and fresh garlic
with a spinach, romaine salad mixed w/ pears, dried cranberries, carrots, cucumbers topped with a tsp of olive oil and vinegar.
Light Snack- veggie chips and water

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Day 2 Daniel Fast- The Power of Sugar

We'll Good Morning All! As the day 1 closed; I began to battle the voice of "doubt" in my head. "Really- 21 days?". "What were you thinking?" "This is impossible." You recognize that voice? My excitement started to drizzle while I watched my son eat his chicken tenders for dinner and I kept dreaming of a piece of chocolate cake dancing in my head.

 2:57am in the morning I wake up with my stomach telling me "Just make yourself a sandwhich and calm this rattling" Anxiety started to creep in along with fear. I couldn't let them invade me. I heard a voice inside me say; even louder say, "I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO RESCUES ME" Rescue?

The original scripture is " I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." - Phillippians 4: 13

I felt rescued with the voice of the Holy Spirit reminding me that I am capable of doing anything as long as I remain focused on him. Just yesterday; I had a conversation with my sister on "discerning the voice of God" Yesterday, I spoke on remaining focus and keeping the distractions out of the way of your path. There isn't one individual on this earth that will not come across distractions. But, the power that lies in you; must remain focused. It was confirmation while these voices began to battle in my mind that the only voice I was concerned was the one reminding me of where I came from.

"Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content:" -Phillipians 4: 18

I couldn't help think about what goes on with other individuals' NEED versus WANTS. Last night I felt I needed some sugar to calm me because, as a routine after dinner I have trained my mind that chocolate is the answer! But, I woke up just fine this morning, Im breathing. Therefore, there wasn't much of a NEED there. It was a WANT. Instead of chocolate, a sweet orange satisfied the sweet tooth and a prayer to be content pushed me through the night.

"For with God NOTHING will be Impossible" - Luke 1: 37

The reason for this fast for me is to discipline my mind. I have to remind myself where I am going by remembering where I came from. Sometimes we drown ourselves to what lies ahead; forgetting that what you have learned in the past only strengthens you for the task ahead. Everyone have a great day! Stay tuned for upcoming discussions on the Power of natural vitamins and minerals! Coming Soon!

Day 1-
Breakfast: bowl of cream of wheat, topped with strawberries, blueberries
Snack: sliced apples, corn tortilla chips, with a chunky salsa
Lunch: garden salad, lemon water
Snack: cashew, sesame, dried cranberry trial mix
Dinner: roasted garlic with corn meal with cabbage, red pepper, green pepper, ginger stir fry
Snack: mini seedless clementine, corn tortilla chips

Monday, January 2, 2012

Day 1-- Daniel Fast

So, today is our first day of the fast. I'm not sure how everyone else feels but, I'm very excited! I woke up in prayer reading Genesis and then still meditating on the verse from Joshua 1:9 " ... Be strong and of good courage; ...." Interestingly enough; I started to  think about everytime you are ready to make a change or take a step;  something seems to go wrong. I call that- DISTRACTIONS. Then your left there pondering IF, SHOULD I, MAYBE NOT and so forth. We'll, Im staying focused... thinking about those who are successful in life --they don't waist time on the road pondering IF, SHOULD I, MAYBE NOT. They keep moving.
That's empowering yourself to achieve what may seem like the impossible.

In the inbox I got 1Corinthians 3:19-20 "For the wisdom of this world is folly with God. For it is written, "He catches the wise in their craftiness," and again, "The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are futile." 

I had to break this one down and meditate on it. Then the connection was made. When I approached this fast; I made a decision that I wanted to clear out the clutter in my mind, body and soul. If Im focused on what God has planned for me I am not concerned about the "craftiness" of others. I am empowering myself by focusing on what truly matters in life. For me at this moment; it's a deeper walk with God, it's growing my business, and spending quality time with my family. If I spend time getting distracted; I loose valuable time in trying to make these things become a possiblity. What are your distractions in life? Are you focused on the "craftiness"  of others or the ways of the "world" we live in. Or, are you going to make a decision to empower yourself by staying focus on the plan that God has for you - in your life.  Ultimately, we are responsible for our own actions. Let me know your thoughts.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Challenge Yourself

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."   - Joshua 1: 9

Well, it's a New Year; and I've decided to give myself a challenge. I've challenged myself to a fast- to eat like a vegetarian for 21 days.  I've decided to take this period of time to use as a way to reflect and connect for what God has planned for me in this New Year. I'm on many new ventures this year and I'm trying to clear my path from any distractions. I will be posting my progress. And in the meantime; challenge yourself this year. You'll never know what you might get out of the experience. Stay tuned.