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The Daniel Plan - Day 1 of My 40-Day Journey

The Daniel Plan - Day 1 of My 40-Day Journey

First of all, we need to discuss butter.

Hot, buttered sourdough bread, buttery garlic bread, and crunchy, French baguettes with a generous pat of delicious butter will be served at the Marriage Feast of the Lamb for sure. I can live without pie. I can do without desserts in general (except lemon tart and crème brûlée — because YUM!). I can resist candy. But, butter is pure, unadulterated kryptonite.

Oh, and as a related fact, movie theatre popcorn is teeny bit of a problem, too.

“With enough butter, anything is good.” ~ Julia Child

(She also said, “Fat gives things flavor” and I have to agree.)

So, I just want to be 100% honest from the get-go that I’m going to be dying for real butter for the entirety of The Daniel Plan. There’s no substitute. Speaking of dying, Patsy Clairmont once said “Diet has the word ‘DIE’ in it and who wants that?!” She introduced the word “Edit” and I’m sticking with it.

Hi! I’m Laurie McClure Hausam and I’m the slightly unhinged brave lady who willingly signed up to start The Daniel Plan during the month of December.

As in, through Christmas with all its delicious foods, noggy drinks, and pepperminty, fudgy treats. As in, skipping the Christmas Day Roast Beast, creamy, garlic mashed potatoes, and hot, buttery popovers. As in, missing out on my family’s annual New Years’ Day Rose Parade/ Swedish Pancakes BaconFest.

Tell me this is not the cuh-ray-zee-est thing you’ve ever heard in your life. At 40-whatever, I blame peri-menopause.

I am a Jesus apprentice, a single mama of five (three homegrown, one Kentuckian, and one Ethiopian), a writer, beach lover, and am addicted to radical grace and yoga pants. As a native of beach cities in Southern California where palm trees sway and bikinis are prevalent, I’ve had a hate-hate relationship with the dreaded bathroom scale since the late-‘90s.

But, in the last five years as my marriage went haywire and there was so much upheaval and insecurity, and a lot of grieving to do, I gave laziness and naughty habits carte blanche and gained the weight of a small European car.

I must report that in my journey this year toward emotional, spiritual, and physical health & wholeness, I have already offloaded 30 lbs. of excess — give me a minute here while I do the Happy Dance — and eliminated a couple of bad habits.

So here’s my pre-Daniel Plan photo for you, after I’ve already lost 30 lbs. One of my goals on The Daniel Plan is to drop 10 more (a realistic goal, I think)… starting with The Daniel Plan Detox today.


Some things can be accomplished with ordinary willpower — like calmly outlasting a toddler tantrum or maintaining a cheerful, encouraging countenance during your son’s screechy violin practice — but harmful habits, addictions, our go-tos for relief from stress, troubles, discouragement, loneliness, financial frustrations, etc., can’t be broken with mere willpower. They require Holy Spirit intervention.

For me, that’s food.

But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. — 1 Corinthians 9:27

Like many people, I can be extreme. It’s all or nothin’, baby. Learning to exercise balanced spiritual stewardship of my body without wild extremes one way or another is not something I can do on my own strength. So, here I am, declaring I need God Almighty to lead me through The Daniel Plan. I can’t do it without Him!


So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. — 1 Corinthians 10:31

Secondly, we need to talk about love. What does love have to do with editing food and fitness choices, you ask?.. A lot! If you’re anything like me, you know it’s way, way harder (if it’s even possible) to get and stay motivated, to enthusiastically look forward to challenges, and press on towards goals through difficult seasons if you’re not standing on a solid foundation of secure love.

It is love — not fear, not guilt, and not peer pressure — that causes us to keep going when we feel like giving up. ~ The Daniel Plan

So, if you’re considering joining me on this 40-day journey (even if you’re not), before we begin let’s remind ourselves of the promise that God’s love for us is unending and unconditional. His covenant is sure.

Remember God loves you:

  • No matter what you look like
  • No matter what size jeans you wear
  • No matter what your messy story is
  • No matter how many times you’ve failed or given up
  • No matter where you are in your faith walk
  • No matter what anyone else thinks
  • No matter what addictions you’ve battled
  • No matter what

Thank You, Abba!


  • I expect to be pleasantly surprised by some new recipes.
  • I expect to be hungry sometimes. (I’m not great at being hungry.)
  • I expect to be slightly grouchy at first. (I’ve already told my kids “No matter what, remember that I love you.”)
  • I expect to be stretched in my faith, stick-to-it-iveness, willingness to be publicly transparent and vulnerable, and in ways I can’t even imagine yet.
  • I expect to really enjoy the community focus of The Daniel Plan — Fun friends always make the hard stuff easier!


  • Fitness: I have no notions of suddenly sprouting legs like Carrie Underwood, but I do want to put on some muscle!
  • Fitness: Exercise for at least 45 minutes three days per week and keeping it FUN! My favorite activities are fast walking, hiking, kayaking, and anything that involves the beach, and I’m an eager newbie at stand up paddling.
  • Food/Fitness: Lose 10 lbs. and leave fluctuating weight in the rear view mirror.
  • Food: Eat three healthy meals per day and two balanced snacks (except for maintaining my prayer habit of fasting at least two meals one day per week).
  • Faith & Focus: Stay on track using The Daniel Plan Journal to record daily thanksgiving, prayer, food and water intake, physical activity, community encouragement, and goals for tomorrow.


Today is The Daniel Plan Detox Day 1! The only thing worse than Day 1 is taking the “Before” picture (note photo above). You’ve seen those outrageous Before & After Heavy/Slim photos online, right? Who does that willingly?! Me, apparently. Just for fun, I was half-tempted to photoshop my face onto one of those but I resisted.

Anyway, back to Day 1 — Goodbye caffeine, processed food, sugar, and gluten. Farewell, my dearest butter. Hello, real, fresh, whole food!

Are you ready to make a change in the spiritual stewardship of your body, too? Join me! Get the FREE download we’re offering here on FaithGateway of The Daniel Plan Detox (thanks Zondervan), then pick up a copy of the book, and start today!

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Will You Join Me?

I know, it’s December, but together we can do it! Those of you who are less than certifiable, feel free to start after the first of the year, and be sure to check the FaithGateway website each week for my blog updates! And if you sign up with your email in the box above you’ll get my weekly updates via email!

I’ve got a feeling that doing this with friends is the Secret Sauce for success. You, dear FaithGateway community, are my support team, so please chime in! Let’s hold each other accountable, share honestly, and encourage one another to keep going!

Follow My [cough] Progress

Brand spanking new blog:
Twitter @laurziemcc where I’ll be using hashtag #DanielPlan (you can too)
Instagram laurzie

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Join the Conversation

What is your food kryptonite? What is your favorite form of exercise? Have you started The Daniel Plan? I’d love to hear from you! You don’t even have to post a “Before” photo, so jump on into the conversation. Please leave me your comments, because you are my missing “F” (Friends) in this Daniel Plan journey!

daniel plan faith food fitness