Spiritual Vitamin “Soul food 4 thought”:
PREFACE: The battle of Carchemish is well documented in the Bible. Nebuchadnezzar vs. Pharaoh of Egypt. The king made his attack on Jerusalem and some 18 years later came the demise of the kingdom of Judah. The reign of David and Solomon had come to an end. The Jews had given warning from God this day would come if they did not return to worshipping the lord. Yet, they continued worshipping their idol so God sent his people into captivity to learn the hard way. Although he is a just and loving God, He must stay true to form..In his quest, Nebuchadnezzar carried off portions of the temple treasures and some choice male captives with him to Babylon. By taking some of the privileged class as hostages, Nebuchadnezzar controlled the rest of the royal family who remained as puppet rulers in Jerusalem. Thus, the kingdom of Judah was now ruled by the Babylonians. One of King Nebuchadnezzar’s captives was Daniel
This story goes further to share with us how Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself with King Nebuchadnezzar choice food nor fine wine which he requested not to partake of. So, he sought permission from the commander of the officials that he might not defile himself. After ten days this was proven.
The story of Daniel takes place during these dark days of captivity. It’s an exhilarating cause for excitement as we come to understand how a few faithful individuals were blessed and honored by God in a situation where it seemed there was no possibility of comfort. The Lesson in Daniel‘s story for us is that as Christians we will be faced with a similar situation or situations which will require us not to accommodate our Faith.
Daniel and 3 others decided, no matter what the cost they would remain unflappable. A minority group for sure! Others became submissive to the pressure of Nebuchadnezzar. In fact, the majority of the captives who became satisfied with the conditions of Babylon, is not altogether surprising. Many Christians do the same thing today when they find themselves in non-Christian environments. Example being, a Christ-like teen leaving home from a structured and faith based foundation, only to find themselves in the secular world of college mayhem. You can be assured most will conform to this lifestyle and simply lose sight of all the Christians values to which they have been taught.
In the story of Daniel, the majority of the captives dared not risk their lives and thought it to be asinine to do otherwise, considering the odds. Why conform to the Babylonian way of life? Babylonians do as the Babylonians do! After all, Nebuchadnezzar saved their lives and provided scholarships for them. He also hand-picked and trained them to become future diplomatic servicemen. Life changing so they believed!!! Why ruin it? Just conform and all is well. At the least, it positioned them for a possible reunion and return to the Babylonians; “the faith of the fathers”.. Many felt that God didn’t truly care anyway. Yes, the majority reasoned themselves right out of the will of God…. In contrast, Daniel did not defile himself..” Daniel knew from God‘s word it was unacceptable to eat from the kings table and the food was forbidden. In doing so he would align with pagan religious practice which he was not willing to do. God is so pleased when we dare be Daniels!
Daniel did not give up at the first sign of failure.. Yes, his requests was delayed, but not denied. And this delay prompted him to try other measures. His determination to obey the Lord in such a precarious situation ultimately met with results. You see, God was working behind the scenes on behalf of his few, but faithful servants. He granted them favor and knowledge. God is always on the scene working, even if it‘s not at center stage.It must be duly noted; that Daniel‘s non conformist beliefs to the Babylonian’s way didn’t mean he aborted his culture. He accepted his name change, the language, and some lifestyle. Not to mention he graduated Summa Cum Laude with God’s favor upon him. He adjusted and acclimated himself to this environment without sacrificing his goals, his glories, his God & God’s word. Not to mention that his faith didn‘t become that of the Babylonians [he was still strong enough]. Daniel stood firm on what he believed, Daring to stand!!! No matter the cost, losing a few buddies, being mocked, eating veggies and water for some three years is a testament to his commitment. He was a paradigm for others. A select few, but God blessed them mightily, promoting and using them for his glory.
In your life today, I‘m sure many of you are confronted with A Daniel situation, being in a different environment or culture even. Your life as you once knew has been flipped upside down. Yes, you may be a minority and the pressures are great. What do you do? Dare to be a Daniel!! Sure, it may come with a cost and even result in loneliness. Granted, it can be lonely at the top, where you are in God’s eyes. All things considered this is not a bad place after all… you may be vilified, laughed at, and even ignored at times. I encourage you to be proud knowing God has your back. Struggles to be atop in God’s kingdom comes with a price that he has already paid!!!! Embrace the change and watch the wonderful work of God in your life. I DARE YOU TO BE A DANIEL!!!
Soul Food Sides:
Daniel 1] [Daniel 1: 1-3] [Romans12:2] [Luke 11:9-10] [Luke 11:7] [Daniel 1:9-16] [Genesis 39:8-10] (See Daniel 1:4-7).
“If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what then is a empty desk a sign of?“ ~ Einstein
“Wise men speak because they have something to say, fools speaks because they have to say something.“ ~ Plato
“It‘s easy in the world to live after the worlds opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but great is the man who in the midst of a crowd keeps with perfect sweetness of who he is“ ~ W. Emerson
YOU DON‘T HAVE TO:
You don‘t have to prove anything to anybody. You don‘t have to live in fear of what others might think.
You don‘t have to continue holding on to the negative habits and thought patterns that have held you back. You don‘t have to keep living under the outdated assumptions that have closed your eyes to some of the best possibilities.
You don‘t have to weigh yourself down with anger, resentment, fear or frustration. You don‘t have to settle for less than the very best you can be.
You can live, you can give, you can love and achieve. You can take this very moment, with whatever it may hold, and transform it into a positive, enriching, fulfilling experience.
You can feel the truth and beauty of your authentic purpose, and take action to follow that purpose. You can let go of all the burdens you‘ve imposed on yourself, and live this day with a powerful, newfound appreciation for all you have.
You can choose right now to meet each challenge with positive passion and enthusiasm for the best, most meaningful possibilities. You can choose, again and again, to truly live life on your own best terms
Eradicate=to destroy completely or wipe out; extinguish;
Fatuous=showing lack of intelligence or thought; or to be inane.
Impregnable=protected from danger of bad weather; or sheltered;