Monday, July 25, 2011

But If Not-7/25/2011 (rp)

"If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up." Dan 3:17-18

In this passage of scripture resides the story of three of God's men who, though part of the captivity in Babylon, were given positions of authority and responsibility by the king. Subsequent to this, the king erected an image and directed everyone to fall down and worship it at the appointed time. Shadrach, Meshac and Abed-nego refused.

Beloved, God is not in the wish fulfilling business. He is neither fairy, leprechaun nor genie. He is the sovereign Lord, creator of the universe and He does what pleases Him. God has a plan not just for all of us, but for everything in creation. We may not understand why things are the way they are or why certain things happen, but we must know that He is in control. The Lord says, "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," declares the Lord. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts." Isa 55:8-9

We, however, are charged to be in the faith business. Even though we may not be able to "see the big picture" or know what is coming around the next corner, we must trust that God does and keep ourselves firmly within the center of His will. This can be challenging due to the many things we experience in life. Neighbors, friends, family, co-workers and bosses can push us to our limits, but it is important that we think beyond our present circumstances and sacrifice neither our faith nor our obedience. We are to strengthen ourselves in the Lord.

Shadrach, Meshac and Abed-nego knew that if they did not comply with the king's command to leave the will of God, they would be subjected to the flames of the furnace. They stood their ground. They remained faithful. They were preserved and even made to prosper. God is so good is He not?

Loving Like Jesus,


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