Daniel 1:3-5 (NIV)
3 Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, chief of his court officials, to bring in some of the Israelites from the royal family and the nobility–
4 young men without any physical defect, handsome, showing aptitude for every kind of learning, well informed, quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king’s palace. He was to teach them the language and literature of the Babylonians.
5 The king assigned them a daily amount of food and wine from the king’s table. They were to be trained for three years, and after that they were to enter the king’s service.
Daniel 1:8 (NIV)
8 But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way.
Resolve-“to come to a firm decision about something”.
I spent today trying to get numerous people to try resolve to a variety of decisions. A couple may have been persuaded, but I know of two long timers that were not. I recognized the patronizing smiles as they listened to my pleas. They assured me of their compliance and effort, when the numbers told me otherwise. My job is to persevere no matter what the response. (Reminds me of my need to share the Gospel)
1 Timothy 4:8 (NASB95)
8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.
I was reminded of the need to resolve things in my life as I read Daniel, and was reminded of what I should make a firm decision about in my life as I read about Jehoshaphat (2 Chronicles 20:21) and about Paul and Silas(Acts 16:25). In the midst of impending disaster and defeat, King Jehoshaphat and his army went out into battle worshipping our LORD. The choir went out first singing praise to the LORD. Worship was their weapon. As they worshipped, the LORD won the battle.
While in prison, facing who knows what type of punishment, Paul and Silas spent their time in worship as well. The end result was their freedom and continued opportunities to serve our LORD. Daniel resolved to serve the LORD by not defiling his body. Later, he resolved to continue to worship the LORD by praying despite threats of death for those that would do so. His life was one of worship no matter what. What resolve!
How about you and me? Do we serve the same LORD? Is the same LORD who protected Daniel, freed Paul and Silas, and defeated Jehoshaphat’s enemies our LORD? Yes! How about you and I resolving to worship Him with all our being!?
How about taking on this assignment to begin with? Sit down in a quiet place and start writing down anything that comes to mind about our Lord. You can use the WORD to stimulate your thinking. Think about His attributes, His character, all that He has done. Enjoy your thoughts of Him. After some time enjoying these thoughts, think about ways he has blessed you, protected you, freed you, defeated enemies for you. Write down these thoughts. Thank Him! Now write down how you might be struggling, concerns you have, fears, ways you are bound, “enemies” around you. Bare your soul to Him. Be real. Now, go back to where you started. Who is your God? What has He done? Now resting in who He is and what He has done, think of what He can do in and through you. Write down your confidence in Him. Thank Him for who He is and what He has done and what He has promised for you. You are writing a Psalm! Pray it back to Him! Worship Him! Resolve to do this regularly. Maybe someday you can share your Psalm with someone else. David was real with his worship. Daniel was obedient in his worship. What will you resolve to do today?
Have a great day of worship!
(If you really struggle with the thoughts of doing this assignment, begin by reading the Psalms. listen to the heart of David, then I think you will begin to hear the heart of God.)