Monday, January 26, 2015

Daniel Plan Week 3

Please forgive me for being a day late posting this!  I had the opportunity to visit old friends and run a 5k in Atlanta this past weekend.  By the time I landed back in KC last night, I was one really tired gal who just couldn't make herself finish this post.  Quite honestly, I was also feeling kind of yucky because I didn't exactly stick to the Daniel Plan most of the weekend.  I am just going to admit that I lived by Nehemiah 8:10 which says,

"And Nehemiah continued, "Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared.  This day is holy to our Lord.  Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength."

Some reunions call for choice foods and sweet drinks (sweet tea that is!).  My dearest friends and I celebrated with all our southern favorites and then we ran a 5K.  Now, mind you, it was, and I'm not even making this up, the Hot Chocolate 5K.  When you finish, instead of a medal, you receive a glorious gift of chocolate fondue and hot chocolate.  I run for chocolate! Here's a photo of some of my friends getting ready to run!

Can you see that chocolate?

Confession over.  I'm claiming Romans 8:1 this week.

Hopefully you read a large portion of the chapter on food last week.  I'd be shocked if you didn't learn something!!  I'd love to get some comments of what stood out to you.

Hopefully you also worked on a memory verse.  Again, I'd love to hear how His word is giving you strength.

This week:
1.  Finish the chapter on food.
2.  Begin incorporating it's principles.  I challenge you to the 10 day detox!  Do's not that hard and you'll feel incredible!  I'm starting 10 days of detox today after my weekend!
3. Watch this video and begin to read the labels on the foods in your pantry. What needs to be replaced?
4. Share a new DP appropriate recipe with us!

Questions, comments?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Daniel Plan Week 2

In week one of our online Daniel Plan group I asked you to read the first three chapters, and especially focus on putting extra effort into meeting with God in His word every day.  This is the most important thing you will ever do to become healthy, and even if you never change one thing about your eating and exercising this will change your life!  My prayer this week has honestly been that my DP friends would fall freshly for Jesus!  You can't spend time with Him without realizing that He's brilliant, eternally merciful, and worthy of any life change He's called us to make!  It's especially important that you maintain this "healthy habit" as you begin this week's study.

I told my face to face group this week that being on this journey is a bit different from your average Bible study and especially different from a typical "diet".  First of all, in a Bible study you usually have a week's worth of homework to do, but then you move on to something else.  This Daniel Plan journey is unique in that we aren't exactly learning the "rules" all up front and then making the changes.  At this early point in the journey, we are slowly learning some things that we will hopefully incorporate slowly but surely for a lifetime.  (Actually that's really what a Bible study should be too, though!)  We learn this way of life slowly because, honestly, it's so much information and we could easily become discouraged enough to just quit if we tried to digest it all immediately. It's not a typical "diet" because we are making changes in order to serve God and our families more effectively instead of just hoping to lose some weight.  I believe it's also different because when we make these changes we will feel so much better that we won't want to go back to our old ways!

So now for week 2...

We will actually take two weeks to talk about food, not because it's more important that faith but because most of you probably already spend time daily with God but need extra time to relearn how to eat and cook.

Your job this week:
1.  Continue spending time with God in His Word each day.  Choose a new memory verse and share it in the comments section.  I mean it...share it!  I also mean it...memorize!  I used to think that you might give up if I expected too much so I would just casually suggest this part, but I believe it's so important that I'm seriously going to tell you memorizing is a MUST!  You may say, "I'm not good at memorizing."  I don't want to hear that...try!  As legalistic and guilt-inducing as this sounds, quite honestly, if Jesus was willing to leave heaven and live in this world only to die and fight the demons in death for you, surely you can work on memorizing some scripture.  (There, I said it.) You can do this and it's so important and helpful when you'd really rather just have oreos!

2.  Begin reading chapter 4 on food.  As I said before, we will do this one in 2 weeks because it's so much information that may be new or even confusing.  As you read, highlight, highlight, highlight!  In the beginning, especially pay attention to "The Daniel Plan Perfect Plate" on page 79 and the "Top 10 Choices in Each Food Group" on page 80.

3. Start incorporating these foods in your meals!  Do not count calories, simply start using these foods.

4.  Drink at least 64 ounces of water every day.

5. Begin trying to cut out sugar and sugary foods, and DO NOT use the usual sugar substitutes.  If you need to sweeten use only raw honey, 100% natural maple syrup or whole leaf Stevia extract. This is a good one:

5.  Find and share with us one new Daniel Plan appropriate vegetable recipe!

That's enough for this week.  You will have questions, complaints, frustrations, and doubts about whether or not you can do this.  YOU CAN DO THIS!  And I absolutely guarantee that when you do make these changes you will feel so much better.

Feel free to ask questions in the comments section.  If you have a question, it's likely that someone else will wonder the same thing and can learn from your question as well. Also remember to check out for extra resources!

Happy week 2!  I'm praying for you!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Starting The Daniel Plan

This time last year I was desperate for a change in my life. I have been following Christ since I was 6 years old and doing ministry for almost 25 years, but I had honestly never even contemplated that my physical body had anything to do with anything.  I assumed that if I was reading my bible and serving people that I was doing all He asked.  Last year I realized I was slowly becoming unable to do anything well because I was lazy and completely overweight. My health was affecting my ministry to my family, my church, everything!  And I tried every Monday morning to do better. But it NEVER worked. About Tuesday night I would give in and eat something I thought was "bad" and then I'd give up,..only to try again but not until the following Monday.  The cycle was pretty endless.  And in it all I would say to myself, "Well at least I am a good person who loves Jesus and follows Him. I may be unhealthy but my heart is right."

Here's the problem, my heart wasn't right.  I was NOT letting Him be Lord of my body.  I wasn't taking care of the physical place where His Spirit lives.  I honestly thought He didn't really care about my body.  And just to make myself less depressed about how I felt and looked, I reasoned that people who did care were shallow and didn't care about their relationship with God.

Then my husband had the audacity to preach a sermon about surrendering your physical body to Christ.  He even had the audacity to ask me to lead a follow up small group focusing on diet and exercise.

One year later I've lost 30 pounds and feel so much better.  I recently ran a half marathon...last year I couldn't run for 13 minutes much less 13 miles.  I have relationships with sweet friends at church that I would never have come to know because we journeyed together on this Daniel Plan ride, and they love me unconditionally but hold me accountable.

My life is very different because I obediently did some really hard things to practice letting Him control ALL of me.  My life is so VERY far from perfect, but I can better handle the struggles that are inevitable in this world because I know that He is even more faithful than chocolate, ice cream, sugar, and every other earthly craving!

Do you want this?  Do you want to be healthier? Do you want to be able to serve Him more effectively as you love your family, your friends and coworkers/clients, your church?

Let's do this together!

I'm leading a Daniel Plan (DP) group at our church, but many are unable to meet with us because of distance or time. We can do this online I think.  I'd love to give it a try and see what happens!  Now remember that you will do better with someone you can actually see and touch, so do your best to enlist a friend or family member who is also committed to it or at least committed to you!

For this first week take these steps:

1.  Buy or borrow The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life.  There are several items that go with it, but I think this one is the only one you need to start. Later you may want the cookbook.  Our church group uses the DVDs, which are fairly inexpensive, and the study guide.  You decide how much you want to spend, but definitely get the main trade book.

2.  Read the first 3 chapters, focusing on the third chapter regarding faith.  As you read, underline every bible verse that is quoted. Think about how faith affects the decesions you make about what to eat and when you are active.

3.  Choose one verse to memorize this week.  Write it on an index card, put in on your phone, make it visible and accessible all week.  Memorize it.  Yes, I said memorize it.  Don't use the excuse that you can't memorize things because you can.  And please don't make me every say this again, but if Christ can live and die for you, I believe the least you can do is memorize some of His works.  In fact, for accountability, tell us in the comments below what verse you are memorizing.

4.  Start doing one healthy thing.  Maybe you want to commit to drinking 64 ounces of water every day. Maybe you want to cut out caffeine or added sugar.  Maybe you want to do something active every day this week.  It won't always be easy, but when you are tempted to not do it, repeat your memory very 5 times...or 50 times!  God can give you His power to overcome!  Do the hard thing to show that obedience to Him and taking care of His temple is important enough to deny yourself. With each small step, He will bless and empower you.  Next week we will begin the chapter on food, and many of you will jump ahead because you want to see how to do this "diet".  Feel free, but don't skip the faith part.  It's the absolute most important thing you'll ever do!

5.  Do one thing to take the next step in your relationship with Christ.  If you don't already spend time in His Word, make a way to read it everyday.  Maybe you need to start a devotion book, or join a bible study, or start reading a book of the bible.  I have been doing those things, but I needed to begin memorizing scripture!  Maybe that's you too. Do something that's one step more to your part of your relationship with Him.  Yes, that takes time, but it's the most important thing you can do.  What makes DP different is the faith factor, so we focus on it first.  When we put Him first, it's amazing how much we come to trust that He really does know best and want the best for us.  We are much more willing to say "NO" to some less than healthy habits and cravings.  You'd be amazed at how much His power can equip you to do/eat the better thing.

6.  Peruse the website.  They have great videos and articles that help.  Here are 2 great ones:

That's it for week 1 and getting started. I think it is important to commit to this and let me know you're with us.  Please comment below with your name and memory verse ASAP.  If you have trouble commenting, feel free to FB message me or even email me at to let me know you are all in.