We’ve got your daily encouragement, written by Phil Woody.
Daniel 6:1-101It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom 120 satraps, to be throughout the whole kingdom; 2 and over them three high officials, of whom Daniel was one, to whom these satraps should give account, so that the king might suffer no loss. 3 Then this Daniel became distinguished above all the other high officials and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him. And the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. 4 Then the high officials and the satraps sought to find a ground for complaint against Daniel with regard to the kingdom, but they could find no ground for complaint or any fault, because he was faithful, and no error or fault was found in him. 5 Then these men said, “We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.”
6 Then these high officials and satraps came by agreement to the king and said to him, “O King Darius, live forever! 7 All the high officials of the kingdom, the prefects and the satraps, the counselors and the governors are agreed that the king should establish an ordinance and enforce an injunction, that whoever makes petition to any god or man for thirty days, except to you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions. 8 Now, O king, establish the injunction and sign the document, so that it cannot be changed, according to the law of the Medes and the Persians, which cannot be revoked.” 9 Therefore King Darius signed the document and injunction.10 When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where he had windows in his upper chamber open toward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.
Temporary strength can be found in many things. People’s compliments give us a flash of inner strength. Successes rack up a cash of strength we can draw from. The favor of others around us can gives us a jolt of energy to tackle the next task. But the problem with all of these are they don’t last and eventually run out. You will have failures. The compliments will cease. The favor of others will fade. These are guarantees. Where is our strength then?
Daniel had the favor of the King. Daniel had the compliments and successes. But that favor was stolen from him by the enemy of his peers who plotted against him. Read the story. Daniel was to be given authority over the whole land. The one of three key leaders was to now be leader of the other two and all under them. The jealousy of others became a plot to take Daniel out. The only thing they had against him was Daniel’s faith in God.
Daniel prayed three times a day. This was the source of his strength. That source and commitment to move from the heart of God, to all things, is what God favored, which became sacred trust. So God gave Daniel favor with the King. God made all Daniel touched succeed. It wasn’t the favor of others that was his source. Remember, that is fleeting. And it fled. The other officials tricked the King into a decree that would not allow any person to pray to any other God but to the king himself or they would be put to death.
Remember, Daniel’s allegiance wasn’t first to a King, but to, “The King.” Daniel in the face of certain death didn’t miss a beat. He didn’t change anything. His source of strength, as it had been, was on his knees at the feet of Jesus, not a king. So to his knees he went. The rest of the story is what the first part of the story was, a story of God’s faithfulness, power and working in and through Daniels life. His influence wasn’t lost, but it increased.
Where is your source of strength. Do you feel yourself more empowered by compliments then your faith in God? Do you find yourself moving f past successes then out of the presence of God and his word in your life. Don’t worry, instead shift. Instead of moving to the next thing fall to your knees and discover what Daniel did, a relationship with Jesus that will transform your heart and mind and inform your every step.
This day, Jesus, don’t let me walk in any confidence but the confidence of you in my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
This week try one time a day, hitting your knees and asking God to inform your next step. Don’t move out of anything but what he speaks or gives you peace about there. That strength can walk through fire and in and out of Lions mouths.
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