I am nothing special. Just an average girl desiring to share how Jesus has taken this mess and turned it into something beautiful!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Jeff's Perspective

Well, this is Jeff and I have taken over Jen's blog for the day. It has been a very challenging week for Jen, but she has done AMAZING! I always love when I see Jennifer do something for the sake of her relationship with God. As her husband it actually pains me to see her struggle so much in this area. It's one of those things that I wish I could fix, but unfortunately I can't.
She did make an amazing meal for me last Tuesday and I felt bad for banana girl, yet proud of her for staying faithful to her promise to God. Although she says she has been grumpy, she has actually been very joyful for the most part. (There may have been a day or two where the grumps outshined the joys :) )
Following Christ is a life long process of denying yourself. Jennifer has done a great job choosing to follow what she feels Christ has called her to do during this 21 day Daniel fast.
She is amazing!

P.S. On another note, would you please pray for her dad, Bud VanTuyl, as he goes in for cancer surgery on Wednesday morning? Thanks!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 13

The last five days have been full of temptations!  We had a celebration at our house on Tuesday for Jeff.  He completed his masters!  Woo hoo!!  So I, not realizing how hard it would be, wanted to throw him a party.  Just a small quiet party with the six of us.  He had an elders meeting so he didn't get home until 9:15.  This gave us plenty of time to make a strawberry cake with a container of suger strawberries on top with a vanilla pudding, cool whip frosting. (I'm giving you details so you can understand what my taste buds were going through)  For dinner we made his favorite which is chicken with a dijon mustard, ranch sauce all on a bed of angel hair pasta.  To through something healthy in there I steamed brocolli (but made cheese to drizzle on top), and got his favorite drink which is cream soda!  He was so excited and surprised.  We sat down and I filled everyone's plate.  Then I turned to my plate which had a banana and brocoli, with no cheese, on it.  I was mad that I didn't have what they had.  Was the celebration about the food?  No, but that is how I work.  If there isn't good food, it isn't a party.  If we go to the movies and don't get popcorn and pop, we might as well just stay at home.  I went to bed a little sad that night.  Tonight was hard again because we had Eli's birthday party.  Another yummy meal and another cake!
Even though it has been hard, I am not tempted to cheat.  I am, however, tempted to be grumpy and ugly.  I am tempted to get angry.  I want  to do this.  I don't want to think food is the reason for every event.  I want to continue to pray for deliverance that I know will come when I surrender this whole issue to Him.  Still don't know what my plan is on day 22.  I know He will show me!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Day 8

Well I am on day 8 and feel an overwhelming peace.  I have been reading the devotions that are in the book I got on the Daniel Fast.  It has great verses that have really helped me put this all into perspective.  I would still love to shove my face into any type of chocolate or a cheeseburger from Sonic!  The problem is I don't think I would have any self-control if my fast were over tomorrow.  Scares me a little bit but I am still praying for God to transform my heart with this issue. 
I went through my book and wrote down several new recipes I am going to make this week.  That is fun, trying new things to see what my family will enjoy eating with me and what they wouldn't be able to gag down.  Right now I have rice simmering for a rice and beans recipe.  Brown rice of course, I would much rather have white!  It does smell amazing so maybe I will be pleasantly surprised. 
Over all I am plugging right along on this journey with God and, if you can believe this, am enjoying it.  I am not in bad moods or grumpy like I have been on every diet I have ever done.  That is itself is a miracle!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Busy, busy, busy!

I wanted to share that tomorrow I will complete one week of doing the Daniel Fast.  I have been amazed at how God has helped me do it.  I haven't cheated once!  I have had a crazy busy weekend with two birthday parties for Joshua and Eli.  I have made a cake and cupcakes.  Served out ice cream, cinnamon rolls, hot dogs and yummy mac and cheese.  I wasn't really even tempted.  A few times maybe.  Still praying for God to change my heart through this process to love and think of Him more than food!  That I will be changed so that when the fast is over I will still be eating healthy.
I don't really have time to journal more, just wanted to say I am doing good and am so thankful for God's faithfulness!
I will try to share more tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Eye opener!

Well my eyes have been opened today!  A friend of mine, who is doing this same fast, told me I should get the book, The Ultimate Guide to the Daniel Fast by Kristen Feola.  I got it today and am floored.  I thought I was doing this fast right but I see after reading the first 17 pages that I am missing a bit.  What a wonderful book.  She starts off by talking about Daniel and his story.  She points out that we don't want to duplicate Daniel's menu but his heart.  I do believe my intentions have been pure but I definitely haven't had a heart like Daniel.  Daniel's heart was mourning over what his people were going to have to endure.  The Bible says he ate no choice meat or wine for three weeks.  She goes on to say that probably meant meat and sweets.  Daniel wanted to deny himself any food that gave him pleasure.  I am not mourning for people but for my own spiritual life since I desire food over God many times. 
I was so excited yesterday because I figured out how to make no bakes with all natural ingredients.  I have had this recipe for some time now but it has butter in it.  I thought I couldn't have it but then yesterday figured out it would work if I substituted olive oil for butter.  I made them yesterday and was thrilled.  If I want to truly die to myself and food that gives me pleasure for 21 days I need to get rid of sugar all together during the fast.  Not to mention in the book she says no sugar at all. 
As I was reading all of this and letting it all soak in, I have to tell you, it made me cry.  I deeply desire to do this and give God complete control of every area of my life but food has such a hold on me that I know it will be painful.  I cherish all of your prayers that I will deny myself to draw closer to God.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Woo Hoo!

Two days down and I haven't been rude to any of my men.  That is amazing!  Today  I have been experimenting quite a bit.  For breakfast I had a banana with natural peanut butter on it.  It was so yummy!  For lunch I sliced a potato, layed them flat on a baking stone, sprinkled them with celtic sea salt and olive oil and baked them.  I wanted to try making my own potato chips, and it was very successful.  I had them with my homeade salsa that I made yesterday.  For dinner, I made quinoa which is like a rice substitute.  I had that with sauteed mushrooms and broccoli.  None of this is what I would have chosen three days ago.  It's not what I would choose tomorrow if I were done with my fast but that is what I am praying God changes in me over the next 19 days.  Let me say it again...two days down, thank you Jesus!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 1

I recently realized how deeply rooted my problem is.  About two weeks ago I decided to go on a diet.  Nothing new, just me doing what I do.  I wasn't even half way through the first day and I was angry that I couldn't eat what I wanted to eat and how much I wanted to eat.  Jeff had called to see how I was doing and by the end of the conversation I'm sure he wished he hadn't called...if you know what I mean!  That night Jeff was on his way home from a meeting and he called again.  He could tell by the way I answered the phone that it might be a long night.  He sweetly said, "You've done great today, why don't you just have one little sweet."  As I agreed with him my bad mood instantly turned into a good mood and it was at that moment that I knew I had a bigger problem than I had ever realized.  Joy, instantly, because I was going to shove some yummy sweet into my mouth.  I don't want food to bring me joy.  I want Jesus to bring me Joy.  He does, don't get me wrong, but food dictates my mood on most days.
Today I have been pleasantly surprised at how it has not affected my mood.  I am excited that I am not a grouch!  Maybe it's because I am doing this fast for the right reasons or maybe it's because my focus isn't on losing weight.  I don't know but I am joyful today!  I may not be in an hour...may not be tomorrow but I do know that when I am weak, He is strong!  I love it that Jesus can take me, a mess, and make the beautiful part of me, Jesus, shine!

So that's a little more background.  Thought I would share a blog that I found.  It has helped me to understand the Daniel Fast a little better and has recipes.  It is the Daniel Diet Fast Blog.  Anyway, today Zeke and I went to Wal-Mart to get what I needed.  So far I have had some fruit and I made some yummy salsa.  I found corn chips that have sea salt so I have munched on those with salsa.  I have to tell you that eating healthy has never been appealing to me.  Jeff will say, "I just want something healthy to eat.  We've been eating out too much."  Not me, when he says that my thoughts are, "Really, cuz I could go for a pizza for dinner."  My prayer through this fast is that my heart will change to want to be healthy.  To want to take care of the body God has given me.  Believe me when I say that has never been a concern of mine when it comes to food.  Just a little honesty!  My hope is that I will go from eating mostly junk and a little healthy to eating mostly healthy and a little junk.  I believe it's all good in moderation.

A beautiful mess!