Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Character... (Daniel Chapter 1)

J.C. Watts, a former US politician, is quoted as saying "Character is doing the right thing when nobody's looking. There are too many people who think that the only thing that's right is to get by, and the only thing that's wrong is to get caught" 

In the first chapter of Daniel, the king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, had laid siege to all of Israel and carried into exile the inhabitants.  He then chose some of the young men of royal blood to be taught in his ways and put to work in service and allegiance to him.  One of those young me was an Israelite named Daniel. The king commanded that those chosen be fed a portion from his own table, which was a high honor. Because these foods were prohibited to his faith, Daniel refused. The story goes on to say that he was shown favor by the guard and he and three friends were allowed to eat within the diet required by his faith and how his appearance was "healthier" looking than that of the other individuals after just ten short days. 
Later, when Daniel was presented to the king, "The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s service." ~ verse 19. 
David and his friends were captives in a strange land, far away from family and their priests. They could have easily chosen to eat the foods that were a sin to their faith; but, they chose to do what was right to them. . . even though no one would ever know.  
But God knew. God showed them favor and blessed them because they did what right by the laws He set forth. Doing the right thing may not always look good to those around you; but, it will always earn you the favor and blessings of a loving God. 
Psalm 1
Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers.

So whether you are at work, home, school, church, or out with friends. . . remember you define your character. Receiving the praise and applause of those around you may seem great; but, it will be short lived. 

Father God, I choose to do the right thing even though I know it is not the popular thing. I choose to be blessed. Help me to make my life me in Your ways! I love You and I thank You for Your unfailing love and the MANY blessings You have given me.