15 Nov DANIEL – A LIFE ABOVE REPROACH
When a person has decided to follow God and live in the light of His way, certain character traits start to show up. One of the prime examples from the Bible of a life lived on-mission is Daniel. The stories we have from this historical record reveal his character, and it’s one worth following!
“Daniel determined that he would not defile himself with the king’s food or with the wine he drank. So he asked permission from the chief eunuch not to defile himself.” Daniel 1:8
Daniel was DETERMINED to follow God’s roadmap for living instead of falling in line with the culture’s standards. He knew exactly what the Lord required of His people, and he took that into consideration before making any decisions. But when his convictions caused him to go against the flow, he wasn’t judgmental or disrespectful about it at all. He asked permission!
What does that look like today? Ask yourself how God’s way differs from the cultural norm, and if there’s any area you might need to rethink. This could change the way you interact with shows, movies, places, food, drink, language, and the list could go on!
“Then Daniel responded with tact and discretion…’Why is the decree from the king so harsh?’ Daniel 2:14,15
Daniel was TACTFUL when interacting with others. This response from Daniel comes after the king has flipped his lid and issued a decree for all of the wise men to be executed – that includes Daniel and his friends! So Daniel’s life is on the line, but he doesn’t sound panicked, he sounds grounded.
We come into situations all the time that can make us want to escalate or retreat. But if we are trusting in God, He can give us the gift of tactful responses. This is self-control, a fruit of the Spirit, something we can all possess if we have the Holy Spirit living in us!
“When Daniel learned that the document had been signed [stating anyone who petitions any god but the king will be thrown into the lion’s den], he went into his house. The windows in its upstairs room opened toward Jerusalem, and three times a day he got down on his knees, prayed, and gave thanks to his God, just as he had done before.” Daniel 6:10
Daniel was BRAVE as he stood his ground as a follower of the One True God. The new ordinance regarding prayer and worship was only set for thirty days! He could have closed the windows, prayed silently, or less frequently during that time to appease the king. But Daniel was not willing to change his prayer life in any way, even for a month.
How can we bravely claim Jesus as our Lord in the midst of so many different beliefs and opinions? Let’s follow Daniel’s example of living in the light, not behind closed doors. But notice that does not require arrogance, judgmental tones, or harsh words – just faithfulness to God through our actions.
“My God sent his angel and shut the lions’ mouths; and they haven’t harmed me.” Daniel 6:22a
Daniel was VICTORIOUS because he put his trust in God. He went against the cultural norms to the point of receiving a death sentence. But God gave him victory over death, and showed His power through Daniel’s obedience.
How can we allow God’s power to be revealed through us? We can give God the credit for what He’s done in our lives! When Daniel survived the lion’s den, he didn’t boast about his innocence or holiness, he gave all the credit to God. Only through a good and powerful God does a doom and gloom story end with peace. And our stories of grace are no different!