Date: Tuesday, September 16
Scripture: Daniel 6:1-9
Verse: As a result, the other officers and the chief administrators tried to find some problem with Daniel’s work for the kingdom. But they couldn’t find any problem or corruption at all because Daniel was trustworthy. He wasn’t guilty of any negligence or corruption. (Daniel 6:4)
Legendary college basketball coach John Wooden was famous not only for his incredible winning record at UCLA, but also for the relationships he made with his players who talk about his as one of the most influential people in their lives. Knowing life is more than basketball, Wooden used his position in young men’s lives to share with them some wisdom that would serve them for years after college. One of his most famous quotes is this, “The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.” Wow. Who are we when no one is watching?
For the next several days we are going to be looking at the story of Daniel, and how his praying wound up having him sentenced to death by the King. Today’s verses tell us a lot about Daniel’s character. The people with whom Daniel worked wanted to find a way to get rid of him. They were jealous of his status with King Darius. To make matters worse, he wasn’t even Babylonian, but an Israelite prisoner in exile. Interestingly, they could not find an offense they could bring before the King; “Daniel was trustworthy. He wasn’t guilty of any negligence or corruption.” So they convince the King to make prayer illegal, because that is the only way they can see getting David in trouble.
What a person of character Daniel must have been. His story is a testimony to living a life different from those around you, by being a person who does the right thing, stands by his convictions, and continues a deep relationship with God even when the outside pressure to assimilate mounts. We should be striving to live our lives similarly. We should want to stand out from the crowd due to our faithfulness.
Prayer: Teach me, O God, to be a person of character like Daniel. Amen.
Action: Who are you when no one is watching?
Respond: Have you known someone who is a person of person of character?
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