Friday, March 11, 2011
Take the Daniel Challenge!
I have of late thought about the need to be a woman of character and what it really looks like. Everyone knows that great character is what we all need, desire to build in our children, look for in the people we work with or deal with in our daily lives. So what does character mean or look like? A great man of character to emulate would be Daniel of the Bible. Many know the story of Daniel in the lion's den but there is really a great story of true character found in Daniel's full life story. So bear with me as I give my take on character.
Daniel out of no fault of his own is brought into slavery under the godless King 'Neb' As you follow Daniel's life, he is promoted to top wise counselor for King 'Neb.' Daniel holds this title through Dan. 4. Daniel Chapt. 5 opens with King "B" now being king and having his godless party where the hand comes out and writes King "B's" doom on the wall. King "B" calls all his wise men, sooth-sayers, astrologers in to interpret for him. Daniel is not called by the King as Daniel is no longer the top dog wise-man nor even among the group of wise-men! Dan. 5:10-12 says how the queen remembers this wise man who was supposed to be the wisest discerner for dreams. King "B" calls Daniel in, and sure enough, Daniel interprets right on the money the hand writing on the wall. Chapt. 6 opens with Daniel once again being promoted to the top dog wise-man position only to have the other princes conspire against him out of their jealousy for losing their top rank.
You know the story but I want to challenge you with the Daniel character. Daniel did not react with the normal character reaction to losing the title even when he was in the position and the most qualified for the position. In fact, Daniel chapter 6 reveals the normal reaction that Daniel should have had ...Daniel should have reacted as the other princes did with jealousy, revenge, coveting, when losing his top position he once had under King 'Neb.' The princes are bashed by the reader, and for good reason, for their conspiracy against Daniel. However, the princes really had the normal reaction we all probably struggle with....jealousy, revenge, coveting, ...reacting to no appreciation, no recognition of our hard work, unfair treatment for all our hard work...ouch the list goes on and on.
Think of this in modern day times. You know all the ends and outs of your position at work and the inner-workings of your job and those around you. You get the management position, you are now the top dog, and rightly are the perfect choice for the position. Now, you are demoted to a position that no one even remembers who you are nor what great things you have done to help the company stay on track. Hummm....this is too close to home, I think. To be a Daniel would be to be content whether raised up or abased. When looking in this light, the jealous princes really reacted like the normal reaction of most people.....to be a Daniel is really an extraordinary life to live.
I pray you and I take the challenge to mentor and try to follow in the godly footsteps of Daniel, as we meet the challenges of the world. I was pretty wowed once again at the character of Daniel who had an 'excellent spirit' May we seek to have an 'excellent spirit' as well to His glory and honor. Take the Daniel Challenge! :)