A man of courage, principle and prayer—Daniel. He’s been brought to my attention both in my work (checking a translation of that book) and in our pastor’s sermon today.
Daniel and his friends passed through a series of tests to see whether they would stay true to God or cave in to pressure. Most well-known of these are the fiery furnace experience that followed their refusal to worship an idol, and the lions’ den experience that followed Daniel’s faithfulness to the outlawed practice of prayer.
But maybe the very first test was the most crucial—the matter of their diet. These young men had just been kidnapped from their home in Judah and brought far away to Babylon to be trained for service in the king’s court. And here was this great food being served up for them. Woops! Not kosher. Just a small thing? Not for them. These young men had been carefully taught values that stayed with them even when they left home. If they had caved in under the pressure of this one thing, would they have had the gumption later on to refuse to bow to an idol?
I pray that I, and those I love, will be strong in the “little things” and then strengthened by that to stand firm when the bigger tests come. May we be people of prayer and faithfulness, courage and conviction!