There is a group in this church that has been inspiring and encouraging to me. It’s our senior bible study group. Not the 17 & 18 year olds, but the senior citizens. They began asking quite a while back when we could have in person Bible Study since we had shut things down for Covid. This group doesn’t Zoom! When we began meeting again, we expected 4 or 6 people to come out, but were greeted with 12 and has since grown to 16. I’ve been inspired by their desire to study the bible, to learn and fellowship. We are currently doing an inductive bible study of the book of Daniel. It included homework with daily scripture readings and assignments. This is the same study our college and career group did recently. It takes commitment. It’s not what we’re used to. For some, it doesn’t come naturally. This senior’s group dove it head first. They desire to continue to learn and deepen their walk with Jesus. This is a season of life when they could just as well be watching Andy Griffith reruns all day. Not that that’s a bad thing.
A couple of take-aways from the beginning of Daniel are that despite their surroundings, Daniel and his buddies stayed true to their God. They were surrounded with people from culture that was not in line with their God. Their lives were threatened. In spite of that, they refused to bow to a false God. Sometimes we use excuses for our sins. Peer Pressure is real. We blame it on the people who we are surrounded with at school, at work, in our neighborhood or even our family. Daniel chose to follow God no matter what. He humbly but completely rejected the King’s order to bow to the false gods. Daniel overcame his surroundings and influences through prayer and study. He was willing to die rather than worship a false God.
Another take-away is that no matter what, God is in Control. We see God working though Daniel. He honored Daniels obedience. And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand…. Daniel 1:2a Jehoiakim with the good king. Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon was the bad king. God allowed the bad king to defeat the good king.
God has always been in control; it just doesn’t always look like it. At times in our lives, it can feel like God is distant. Our lives feel out of control. The fact is that our lives very well may be out of our control. But God. The God of this universe. The God who has our best interest in mind. The God who loves us no matter what. He always has been and He still is - in control. There is no need for you to worry or fear. Do you believe that?
In case you’ve missed it, there’s an election coming up. Many have put their trust in candidates. My trust is in Daniel’s God and the fact that he indeed is in control.