Hello New Hope Members,
I bring you greetings in the matchless name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
I look forward to you joining the New Hope MBC fast. Fasting is the voluntary denial of food and/or material items for the purpose of loosening the worldly ties it has on our lives. As followers of Christ, we fast to bring ourselves into a closer relationship with God through prayer. Fasting is a deliberate act, where believers trust God for their needs to be met.
I encourage and challenge you to use this time for growing your relationship with God. Take the time you would normally eat a meal as an opportunity to pray. When you feel vulnerable or irritated, devote your attention to seeking God’s presence. Allow Him to have a place in your spirit, thus, opening the door to the blessings that are waiting for you in service to Him. A renewed closeness with God and a greater sensitivity to spiritual things are usually the results of a fast.
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6, NIV)
These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Fruits include but are not limited to apples, apricots, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, boysenberries, cantaloupe, cherries, cranberries, figs, grapefruit, grapes, guava, honeydew melon, kiwi, lemons, limes, mangoes, nectarines, oranges, papayas, peaches, pears, pineapples, plums, prunes, raisins, raspberries, strawberries, tangelos, tangerines, watermelon.
These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Vegetables include but are not limited to artichokes, asparagus, beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chili peppers, collard greens, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, ginger root, kale, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, mustard greens, okra, onions, parsley, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, scallions, spinach, sprouts, squashes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, watercress, yams, zucchini, veggie burgers are an option if you are not allergic to soy.
Whole grains including but not limited to whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, oats, barley, grits, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, rice cakes and popcorn.
Nuts and seeds including but not limited to sunflower seeds, cashews, peanuts, sesame. Also nut butters including peanut butter.
These can be canned or dried. Legumes include but are not limited to dried beans, pinto beans, split peas, lentils, black eyed peas, kidney beans, black beans, cannellini beans, white beans.
Including but not limited to olive, canola, grape seed, peanut, and sesame.
Spring water, distilled water or other pure waters.
Tofu, soy products, vinegar, seasonings, salt, herbs and spices.
All animal products including but not limited to beef, lamb, pork, poultry, and fish.
Products including but not limited to milk, cheese, cream, butter, and eggs.
including but not limited to sugar, raw sugar, honey, syrups, molasses, and cane juice.
Including Ezekiel Bread (it contains yeast and honey) and baked goods.
Including but not limited to artifi- cial flavorings, food additives, chemicals, white rice, white flour, and foods that contain artificial preservatives.
Including but not limited to potato chips, French fries, corn chips.
Including shortening, margarine, lard and foods high in fat.
Including but not limited to coffee, tea, herbal teas, carbonated beverages, energy drinks, and alcohol.
First, plan your menus and prepare the foods so they are available to you. See the Daniel Fast Cookbook, plus there are many recipes on this site that you can make ahead.
Second, you might want to get rid of or at least put away foods that are tempting.
Third, plan time to prepare meals as they will likely take a little longer than when you are not fasting. Most of the meals you prepare will be from scratch since there are so few prepared products that don’t have chemicals in them. So you will want to set aside enough time to prepare your meals, not only for those you will have at home, but also those you will have at work or when you are traveling.
Of course, you also want to prepare your heart for the 21-Day Fast. Seek the Lord’s guidance as you get ready to start the fast. Are there issues in your life that you need to address? Are their needs in your family or ministry that can use special attention? Are you seeking healing? Do you feel oppressed by financial bandages? These last few days of the year are an excellent time to search your heart, open yourself to the Lord, and allow Him to lead you into your personal 21-Day Fast.
Make a shopping List.
6 ears corn (cut off the cob)
6 medium-large red potatoes (chopped in 1/2 inch pieces)
6 carrots (finely chopped)
1 medium-large onion (finely chopped)
2 green peppers (finely chopped)
2 bay leaves
3 teaspoons thyme
2 teaspoons marjoram
3 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons sea salt
2 teaspoons pepper
3 32oz. boxes of vegetable broth
Water, as necessary
Put vegetables and spices in a large soup pot. Cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally for 15 minutes. Add broth and maintain a light boil. Cook 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from heat. Blend 3/4 of the soup mixture in a blender in batches. Put blended soup in a large bowl or container until the blending process is complete. Pour the blended soup back into the pot. Add water to thin and obtain the desired consistency. Heat through and serve.
Serves 8-10 generous- ly.
6 portabella mushroom caps
1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Pure Maple syrup
2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
Wash mushrooms and place in a gallon size plastic sealable bag. Combine remaining ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine. Add to the mushrooms and marinate for a few hours. Grill indoors or out until cooked through.
Serve with baked sweet potatoes and grilled squash and asparagus.
1-2 tspn curry powder
1/2 c frozen sweet peas
1/2 c corn
1/4 c onions
1/4 c tomato
1/2 tspn dried thyme leaves
1 tbsp virgin olive oil
1. Make the desired amount of brown rice
2. Dice the onion and tomato
3. Heat pan with olive oil
Mix in tomato, onions, thyme, corn, sweet peas and curry
4. Stir until onion and tomato is cooked. Add water sparingly to keep it from sticking to the pan.
5. Add already cooked brown rice.
6. If desired add hot peppers such as jalapenos or scotch bonnet or leave the flammable spices out.
1 28oz. can diced or crushed tomatoes
1 6oz. can tomato paste
1 can of tomato sauce
1 can (drained) of corn, green beans, potatoes, English peas, carrots.
Salt and pepper to taste
2 medium onions diced
1 tsp garlic
4-5 bay leaves
Add water to cover, cook in slow cooker for 3-4 hrs or on stove top. Could also add mushrooms or other veggies you enjoy just be creative.
1/2 cup soy milk or fresh orange juice
1/2 cup frozen or fresh berries
2-3 cub ice
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.
Makes 4 servings
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Coat a heavy baking sheet with cooking spray. Cut each potato in half crosswise. Place the halves cut side down on the cutting board and cut each into 4 wedges. Place the potatoes in a mound on the prepared baking sheet.
In a cup, mix the oil, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Pour over the potato wedges and toss to mix well. Spread the potatoes out on the sheet. Bake, stirring 2 or 3 times, until tender and lightly browned, about 35 minutes. Serve hot.
Per serving: 110 calories, 2.5g fat, 21g carbohydrates, 2g protein, 2g fiber, 150mg sodium
“Whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the Lord Jesus, all the while giving thanks to him to God the Fa-ther (Colossians 3:17)
Doing everything “as a representative of the Lord Jesus” means bringing honor to Christ in every aspect and activity of daily living. As a Christian you represent Christ at all times—wherever you go and whatever you say. What impression do people have of Christ when they see or talk with you? What changes would you make for your life to honor Christ?
“Jesus called them together and said, “You know that in this world kings are tyrants, and officials lord it over the people, we are to serve them. But among you it should be quite different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant.” (Matthew 20:25-26)
By serving others, those in God’s kingdom turn the world’s values upside down. Jesus taught that the greatest person in God’s kingdom is the servant of all. Authority is given not for self-importance, ambition or respect, but for useful service to God and his creation.
Serving others is real leadership!
“I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep in-to the soil of God’s marvelous love.
We are all a family because we have the same Father. God is the source of all crea-tion, the rightful owner of everything. He promises his love and power to his family, the church (Ephesians 3:16-21). Those who live within the body of Christ discover the blessing of Jesus becoming more and more at home in them.
“I will thank you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done.” (Psalm 9:1)
What is Praise? Praise is saying thank you for every aspect of his divine nature. When we praise God, we help ourself by expanding our awareness of who he is. In each Psalm you read look for an attribute or characteristic of God for which you can thank him.
Praise is thanking God for his many gracious gifts.
“Don’t you realize how kind, tolerant, and pa-tient God is with you? Or don’t you care? Can’t you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sin? (Romans 2:4)
If we want to avoid punishment and live eternally with Christ, all of us, whether we have been mur-derers and molesters or whether we have been honest hardworking , solid citizens, most depend totally on God’s grace. We have all sinned re-peatedly, and there is no way apart from Christ to be saved from sin’s consequences.
“Even as he said it, a bright cloud came over them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, and I am fully pleased with him. Listen to him.” (Matthew 17:5)
Genuine worship results in submission and obedience to Jesus. Jesus is more than just a great leader, a good example, a good influence or a great prophet. He is the Son of God. When you understand this profound truth, the only adequate response is worship.
When you have a correct understanding of Christ you will obey him.
“You can be sure of this: The LORD has set apart the godly for himself. The LORD will answer when I call him. (Psalm 4:3)
Prayer is speaking with God . The godly are those who are faithful and devoted to God. We can be confident that God listens to our prayers and answers when we call on him.
When you feel as though your prayers are bouncing off the ceiling, remember that as a believer, you have been set apart by God– and he loves you. Look at your problems in the light of God’s power instead of looking at God in the shadow of your problem.
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the word gives. So don’t be troubles or afraid. (John 14:27)
The end result of the Holy Spirit’s work in our life is deep and lasting peace. Unlike worldly peace, which is usually defined as the absence of conflict, this peace is confident assurance in any circumstance. With Christ peace, we have no need to fear the present or the future.
If your life is full of stress, allow the Holy Spirit to fill you with Christ’s peace.
“Now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other, Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. (John 13:34)
God consistently forgives us each time when we ask in repentance. Just as Jesus knew what the disciples would do, he did not change the course of events , nor did he stop loving them. In the same way, Jesus knows exactly what you will do to hurt him. Yet he still loves you unconditionally and will forgive you whenever you ask for it.
Don’t let go of your faith in the one who loves you.
“God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his son would be the first born, with many brothers and sisters. (Romans 8:29)
God’s ultimate goal for us is to make us like Christ (1John 3:2). As we become more and more like him, we discover our true selves, the persons we were created to be. How can we be conformed to his likeness? By reading and heeding his Word, by studying his life on earth through the Gospels, by being filled with his Spirit, and by doing his work in the world.
“One day the apostles said to the Lord, “We need more faith; tell us how to get it.” (Luke 17:5)
Effective faith depends on God. The disciple’s request was genuine, they wanted the faith necessary for radical forgiveness. What is faith? It is total dependence on God and a willingness to do his will. It is complete and humble obedience to God’s will, readiness to do whatever he calls us to do.
The amount of faith isn’t as important as the right kind of faith—faith in our all powerful God.
Effective faith is more concerned with its life than its size. A mustard seed is small but it is alive and growing. Like a tiny seed a small amount of genuine faith in God will take root and grow. Almost invisible at first, it will begin to spread, first under the ground and then visibly. Although each change will be gradual and imperceptible, soon this faith will have produced major results that will uproot and destroy competing loyalties.
We don’t need more faith; a tiny seed of faith is enough if it is alive and growing!
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Trust involves heartfelt confidence in God. Leaning has the sense of putting your whole weight on something, resting on and trusting in that person or thing. We should always be willing to listen to and be corrected by God’s Word and wise counselors.
Bring your decisions to God in prayer, use the Bible as your guide, and follow God’s leading. He will make your paths straight by both guiding and protecting you.
Trust includes giving God our future plans. Look at your values and priorities. What is important to you? In what areas have you not acknowledged him? What is his advice? In may areas of your life you may already acknowledge God, but it is the areas where you attempt to restrict or ignore his influence that will cause you grief.
Make him a vital part of everything you do; then he will guide you because you will be working to accomplish his purposes.
“If you want to be perfect, go and sell all you have and give your money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then, come follow me.” (Matthew 19:21)
God is pleased with a sacrificial attitude that puts everything we have at his disposal. Should all believers sell everything they own? NO. We are responsible to care for our own needs and the needs of our families so we won’t be a burden to others. We should, however, be willing to give up anything if God asks us to do so. This kind of attitude allows nothing to come between us and God and keeps us from using our God-given wealth selfishly. If you are not comforted by the fact that Christ did not tell all his followers to sell all their possessions then you may be too attached to what you have.
“Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will accept. When you think of what he has done for you, is this too much too ask? (Romans 12:1)
God is pleased with sacrificial living because it shows obedience and gratitude for his grace. God has good, pleasing and perfect plans for his children. He wants us to be transformed people with renewed minds living to honor and obey him. Because he wants only what is best for us, and because he gave his Son to make our new life possible, we should joyfully give ourself as a living sacrifice for his service.
“We work together as partners who belong to God. You are God’s field, God’s building—not ours (1Corinthians 3:9)
Teamwork is a vital part of life in the body of Christ. God’s work involves many different individuals with a variety of gifts and abilities. There are no superstars in this task, only team members performing their own special roles.
We can become useful members of God’s team by setting aside our desires to receive glory for what we do. Don’t seek the praise that comes from people—it is comparatively worthless. Instead seek approval from God!
“Don’t be selfish, don’t live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. Don’t think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing. (Philippians 2:3-4)
Many people, even Christians, live only to make a good impression on others or to please themselves. But selfishness brings discord. When we work together caring for the problems of others as if they were our problems, we demonstrate Christ’s example of putting others first, and we experience unity. Don’t be so concerned about making a good impression or meeting your own needs that you strain relationships in God’s family.
“Now that I am departing the world; I am leaving them behind and coming to you. Holy Father, keep them and care for them—all those you have given me—so that they will be united just as we are. (John 17:11)
Jesus’s great desire for his disciples was that they would become one. Jesus wanted his followers to be unified as a powerful witness to the reality of God’s love. Are you helping to unify the body of Christ, the church? You can pray for other Christians, avoid gossip, build others up, work together in humility, give your time and money, exalt Christ and refuse to get sidetracked arguing over divisive matters.
“ I pray that your love for each other will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in your knowledge and understanding. (Philippians 1:9)
The love commanded by Christ should create deep unity among Christians. All Christians are part of God’s family and thus share equally in the transforming power of his love. Do you feel a deep love for fellow Christians, friends and strangers alike? Let Christ’s love motivate you to love other Christians and to express that love in your actions toward them.
“ Create in me a clean heart, O God, Renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)
We are not righteous by nature. Because we are born as sinners (Psalm 51:5), our natural inclination is to please ourself rather than God. David followed that inclination when he took another man’s wife. We also follow it when we sin in anyway. Like David we must ask God to cleanse us from within (51:7), making room for clean thought and right desires. Right conduct can come only from a clean heart and spirit. Ask God to create a pure heart in you.
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4, NIV)
Congratulations! I pray everyone made it through the test of obedience with much success. As you have completed this fast of overcoming the flesh, reflect on how far you have come in your prayer life and relationship with God.
Fasting is a test of the heart. It helps us to focus on God and to rely on His Word. It helps to break down strongholds and barriers used by the enemy to separate us from God.
Take some time to reflect on the 21 days of fasting you just concluded. Consider the reasons for fasting. Did you need God’s guidance on an important matter? Did your prayer life become dulled by worldly concerns? Did you struggle with a particular sin? Whatever the issue, the benefits of fasting include the means of unlocking God’s grace in helping you with your needs while pointing you towards the sufficiency of God.
The last 21 days have given you the opportunity get to know God better. Allow Him to be the authority in your life. As this New Year progresses, let us remember to stay closely connected with God and practice being obedient. Additionally, pray for others with the love that only comes from Christ. I pray this year will present you and your family many blessings.
Rev. Rodney Kemp
The following resources were used to obtain knowledge and information contained in this Devotional guide composed for New Hope Missionary Baptist Church for the 2021 fast.
The Handbook of Bible Application – Neil S. Wilson
A Taste of Heaven Cookbook – New Hope MBC
DANIEL FAST 2019
Beginning: January 4, 2021
Ending: January 24, 2021
New Hope Missionary Baptist Church
23455 W. Nine Mile Road Southfield, MI 48033
Telephone: 248 353-0675