God is here.
How did Daniel live a life of faithfulness and success from 16 to 86? What did he know that we need to know.
Daniel learned that circumstances don’t determine our proximity to God. Your life can be going great and yet you feel a million miles away from God. On the flip side, your life could be full of challenges while you’re close to God.
Our closeness to God has less to do with our circumstances and more to do with our seeing God in our lives.
Daniel lived as if God was present in his circumstances.
Rooted in Devotion to God
“But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank.” – Daniel 1:8a
The goal of the King Nebuchadnezzar was for these young men to think like a Babylonian, believe like a Babylonian and behave like a Babylonian. He wanted them to forget where they were from, who their family was and who their God was.
It’s easy to compromise when our circumstances are less than ideal.
Daniel purposed in his heart to walk with God. That devotion defined him.
Refined by Decisions
“Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.” – Daniel 1:8b
Living as if God is present in our circumstances comes down to the nitty gritty decisions we make on a daily basis.
Daniel made this decision without knowing the end of the story, though he could predict it.
Every decision we make is either a stepping stone or a stumbling block. It either helps or hinders what God is doing in our lives.
Results in Demonstration
“And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of the eunuchs…” – Daniel 1:9
“…God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding…” – Daniel 1:17
“And in ever matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom. And Daniel was there until the first year of King Cyrus.” – Daniel 1:20-21
God used the single-minded focus of Daniel to shape and direct the rest of his life.
When you live with that kind of devotion you learn to stand up for God in the right way, at the right time, for the right reason!
Daniel serves for 80+ years and shapes history. I don’t think he knew that at the time. You never know what is hanging in the balance when you live as is God is here.
It all starts with the decision: God is here.