The first life changing book I the Bible, this is the second. It makes you rethink your way of eating, exercising, fellowshipping, understanding God and just about your whole being in general. Then it gives you practical ways to better yourself. The plan is so simple to follow and the food is delicious. Our entire family decided to go on the Daniel plan, even our 4 kids. We have energy now and are feeling so much better, not to mention our relationship as a family is stronger.
Though Rick Warren doesn't have many book titles to his credit, there are very few Pastors that have the platform and influence of Rick Warren. You can see that influence exercised when world renown doctors and health experts willingly volunteer their time to help establish a diet plan for Pastor Warren and his church family at Saddleback. That's just what Dr. Oz, Daniel Amen, and Mark Hyman did. Now at first glance that seems odd, doesn't it? An entire church committed to a diet plan? Isn't there usually a giving campaign, or Bible reading plan commitment to get involved with instead?
It's no secret that Warren himself has struggled with his own weight. At the start f the book, Warren recounts a specific time of confession in front of his church one Sunday morning following the experience of baptizing 800 individuals the previous week. He tells the story of his own judgement of those he was baptizing due to their obesity before falling under the deep conviction that he had to look in the mirror. Pastor Warren then asked for forgiveness and vowed to right the ship. The Daniel Plan is the result of his efforts to do just that.
"The Daniel Plan is far more than a diet. It is a lifestyle program based on biblical principles and five essential components: Food, Fitness, Focus, Faith, and Friends. These last two components Ã¢â¬â faith and friends Ã¢â¬â are what I call the secret sauce that makes The Daniel Plan so effective." - Rick Warren
In this 40 day challenge there are no gimmicks and no shortcuts. The quality of advice and thought put into the book is evident from the beginning. Warren is especially encouraging through out each chapter while acknowledging several times that success with this program only comes through hard work and intentional choices, daily. He uses various scriptures and health studies to motivate and deepen the experience of the food plan past just being a diet.
He begins the book talking about faith and briefly presents a broad stroke, light review of the gospel and our need for faith. Warren then moves on to the food choices that we make while outlining that we should consider these choices a lifestyle decision, not just a 40 day trial. The remaining chapters deal with fitness and what type of physical exercise will work for you, maintaining your focus during this plan, and ending with the need to walk through this plan in the context of community that will lead to a lasting change. In the final chapter there are also some recipes that coincide with this 40 day challenge for you to follow.
This book was an easy read and full of great motivation, information and encouragement. I will say parts of this book felt forced. There were several times when it seemed like Warren was stretching the biblical context just a little too thin in order to incorporate scripture onto his plan. To that point, you will notice the unending translation resources that Warren uses, seemingly on the whim of whichever version carries his point verbally best. Although he stretches some scripture passages a bit to fit his mold, it definitely brings home his point.
Something else to consider, which is true of most diet plans, is the amount of money you will need to follow the food recipes and nutrition guides made available. I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for an effective and practical diet plan that is well thought out and provides some spiritual context. Warren once again delivers a quality program that has and will continue to have lasting impact on individuals lives for years to come.
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