Jan 17, 2011

Dear Lord, I Wish I Was A Lutheran. They Would Never Allow This.

Every year our pastor calls a fast for our church.

You don't have to do it. You won't be kicked out if you decide that you are going to eat tacos come hell or high water. It's not that strict. But he does call a corporate fast of everyone in the church who is willing. Its called a Daniel Fast. You can read more about what it is here. I myself am not wild about it as I do not personally know this Daniel character and find it a bit pushy for him to tell me what I can and cannot eat (but then again I've felt this way about every Weight Watchers leader I ever had and don't even get me started on that operator I talked to at Nutrisystem.)

But anyway, as I was saying, he calls a fast. Did I mention our pastor is a man?

I find that fasting is easier for men.

It's especially easier for men of God.

But I am a woman.

A woman of issues.

So when our pastor called this corporate fast I asked myself, "Self, do you want to go on the Daniel Fast?" And surprisingly my self told me "no." Which I found odd because usually I am just dying to go on 21 day fasts. However, instead of going on the Daniel Fast, the AG and I decided to fast something that was, indeed, a sacrifice for us. To be honest, I'm not sure what he's fasting - nor do I care. The man is so disciplined it makes me want to hurl, so I'm sure he's doing something wonderful like fasting exercise or fasting organizing his socks by colors or fasting color coding his Bible. Whatever. Who cares. All I'm concerned about during this fast is me. Me. Me. Me.

Because I'm fasting sweets.

"Awww please, Melissa. 21 days without sweets. Oh, boo-hoo. Poor, poor you. How ever will you make it?"

I hear you. I know you're saying those things. I don't care. You can smirk and mimic all day long but I will have you know that sweets are a food group to me. They are right under the food groups: Mashed Potato's, Chocolate Milk and Chicken Tenders. Me giving up sweets is like me giving up bathing: I do it every day, come rain or shine, whether I need it or not and sometimes I do it twice.

Sweets are not something I partake in on Christmas or New Years or the 4th of July because we are meeting up with friends at the lake, sweets are something that I wash my food down with. When some people say they have a "sweet tooth" I reply "well, I have sweet teeth."

First of all, let me say that I am not a good faster. I never have been. But on a serious note there are some things that I would like to see God reveal Himself in this coming year and so I took this fast seriously. I could have given up Chik-fil-A; it would have been hard but I would have been just fine. I could have given up green beans and broccoli, don't think I didn't try. But instead I prayed about what to give up and for a non-faster, giving up sweets was a good (and difficult) place for me to start.

So there are no cookies that I snack on while putting them into my kids lunchboxes. No cake when I go to friends birthday parties or showers (of which I have been to just last week........and nearly diiiiiiiieeeed). There are no Cokes or Dr. Pepper when I have a hankerin'. No ice cream during The Bachelor. There is no chocolate milk in the mornings with the kiddos. No Lucky Charms or Pop-Tarts when I'm in a hurry.

There is also no joy on my face.
No peace in my heart.
No respite for my weary soul.

So here's hoping to goodness God grants me those things before long or I might kill a member of my family and blame it on my pastor.

Oh, I'm kidding of course. There was a little joy on my face yesterday when The AG walked in from Wal-Mart and laid a bag of Chips Ahoy down in front of me. But he said it looked more like the Joker after all that acid had burnt his face than it did a really pleasant smile. So he quickly removed the bag of cookies and lived to see another day. So see? Its going well.

So for those of you who are doing the Daniel Fast or have done the Daniel Fast, I don't want to hear from you. I don't want to hear about your lament and your sorrow, I've got enough problems of my own. I want to hear from those of you who have always looked at sweets as I have - a food group all their own. Any ideas on what I might find enjoyable during this fast if it can't be Reese's? Apparently there's something out there called fruit, but I thought it only grew in the summer.

Heading in to week 2. Wish me luck. Wish my family even more.


Laurel said...

I also have sweet teeth! I've never done a fast and I hope I never get the wild idea to do one, I'd die! I'll just eat all your sweets for you, send them my way.

Laurel said...

I also have sweet teeth! I've never done a fast and I hope I never get the wild idea to do one, I'd die! I'll just eat all your sweets for you, send them my way.

Kim Little said...

Try dried cranberries...Craisins. YUM!

katy said...

Truth be told, I have never fasted. Ever. I've felt called to a few times, kind of, and ignored it. Yikes. So, I'm wishing you luck and blessings, I need you to finish your fast so you can inspire me. No pressure here. :) Let us know how it goes!

katy said...

PS...I just saw Kim's post...Craisins...I think those are chock full of sugar!!! LOL! So, are those considered sweets? :)

Amanda said...

OH you poor woman! As I was reading this, I thought, "Maybe that's what I should be doing, instead of trying the Adkins Diet." But then you listed all the sweets you'll be giving up and my heart stopped a little. I wish you all the strength I can send through a comment box and more so when it's 'that time of month' for you. YIKES! Please keep us posted on how you're doing. I, like Katy, will use you for my inspiration!

IRW Dana said...

I hate to say I'm eating a chocolate orange as I'm sitting here reading your blog, and it's 10:00 AM. It says "orange" on the box and it has a slight taste of orange to it so I"m going with the "I'm eating an orange" thing and not telling anyone its chocolate! Yuuuuummmmmmmm!

Andrea said...

Sweets are DEFINITELY a food group, as well as mashed potatoes! And the Bachelor with out ice cream is like....is like....peaunut butter without jelly! Best wishes on your fasting adventure. Does the frozen fruit with added sugar count as a sweet? :)

missy said...

i think i've cheated on every fast i go on. when i fasted from sweets, i didn't include flavored creamer in my coffee or pop so WELL DONE YOU for being hard core with yourself. would a homemade fruit smoothie with vanilla yogurt be considered a sweet? sorry i don't have any non-cheater suggestions. but i am sure god will satisfy you with himself somehow.

Marlene said...

I hear you! LOVE sweets, and so hard to give them up. I could care less about the meat I'm missing, all I want is sweets! (Did I mention I'm in the second week of our corporate Daniel fast. I'm on the pastoral staff so no chance of me not participating). Sorry, I know you didn't want to hear from me! ;-)

MBush said...

Because of endometriosis I am on a very strict diet. It sucks...a lot. I do not eat any sugar at all. It sucks....a lot. One thing I have found that doesn't take the place of the good stuff...but makes me feel a tiny tiny tiny bit better is what we call Crunch. I usually use frozen blue berries or peaches...throw them in a pan...crunch up some special K flakes and put them on top...sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 for 20 minutes....it looks like desert...tastes pretty good...but doesn't have sugar but it doesn't suck....completely.
If you try it...let me know.

Dysfunctional Mom said...

I am impressed. For real.
Dried pineapples taste like candy, but they're not, they're fruit, so they totally don't count.
Maybe raisins? Golden raisins are yummy.

Crazy Sister said...

That sounds tough. Hope God gives you the encouragement you need to stick through it! And I pray it all seems worthwhile for you by the end.

Andi said...

Oh my! You are so funny! I am always afraid to pray about fasting for fear I will be asked to fast from coffee.

Or chocolate...

I know you will grow through this, and the good news is it probably won't be out!

Lindsey said...

If you have a local grocery store that grinds peanuts, get freshly ground peanut butter and an apple. Really good!
Or my other snack is the light laughing cow cheese (little triangle) spread on a gala apple.

Deanna said...

Strawberries - lots of 'em. When I'm doing a no-sugar fest, I have to have strawberries to satisfy my sweet craving. Right behind that is fresh pineapple. No other fruits really help with that edge that the craving gets...that "holding the arms of my chair with my fingernails digging in because dammit I'm NOT going to eat something with sugar in it if I can help it!!" feeling. know what I mean?