The three God-fearing government officials had a choice: Bow down and worship the golden idol as commanded by the king; or, be thrown into the furnace and be burned alive. They refused, opting instead to tell the king that God would deliver them - and even if he didn't, they would rather be burned alive than serve false gods and bow to the golden image the king had set up.
The king was Nebuchadnezzar. The three government officials were Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego.
We know the story. And we know that God was with them from the time they were thrown into the furnace, until the time they walked out of the furnace with not even a hint of smoke on them.
Nebuchadnezzar was so in awe that not only did he decree that others throughout the kingdom not dare speak against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, but he promoted all three to even higher positions.
What can we learn from this?
- Like those who threw the three into the furnace, those who try to ruin you, God will cause the same or worse ruin to come upon them. Neither fret over what people are doing to you nor fear them!
- Trust God for the outcome. Don't bow to political pressure or threats of losing your job if you don't go against your faith. Know that God is in the fire with you and you will come out without scorch. The flames will rage around you, but God will protect you.
- Give God glory before, during and after your trial and He not only will rescue you but in the end, cause the very ones who tried to destroy you, to promote you!
- Challenges will come. Threats are real. Those in authority over you may even fire you or demote you. Ridicule and despise you. Plot against and lie on you. But know that they can't defeat you. You will, in the end, come out on top. The fix is already in, in your favor. You may be on the ropes, but they can never deliver the knock out blow.
- Place everything you have in God's hands. Be confident in Him. You don't need to "get back" at anybody because God has your back. Do all you can and leave the rest to God. The battle is His, not yours. Represent God and He will rescue you. Stand on His principles and He will stand up for you. Be confident in this one thing. They may form a weapon against you, but it won't do the devastation to you they thought and schemed. They may try and ruin you, but they themselves will come to ruin. Have confidence in God and surely He will not only bring you out; but in the end, promote you.
The story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego is found in Daniel 3
Published on Monday, July 29, 2019 @ 11:53 AM CDT
Published on Friday, July 26, 2019 @ 10:13 AM CDT
You're wealthy when you have everything money can buy. Ahhhh, but you're rich when you have everything it can't.
Jeffrey Epstein is wealthy but all of his money can't buy one hour of freedom. Howard Hughes was wealthy but his money couldn't buy him a sound mind.
God has so RICHLY blessed us that we so often miss it. Don't wish to be wealthy.
Think of all you have that money can't buy and thank God that you're rich!
Published on Friday, July 26, 2019 @ 10:06 AM CDT
Published on Wednesday, July 17, 2019 @ 4:16 PM CDT
Until selfishness morphs into selflessness, we're not ready to lead well. It's why so many systems and departments led by so many Christians are failing too.
We have adopted the same model of leadership as the world... "me first." Jesus taught and led just the opposite. Me first. If you lead with this mentality and claim Jesus Christ as Lord you may have the position, but you will never have the power you so desperately want. Servant leadership was good for the 20th century.
What is needed today and few understand, even fewer willing to practice is sacrificial leadership because we live in an ultra-selfish generation.
To lead well, eat last. Better yet, pass your plate to your worker who is still hungry.
Published on Wednesday, July 17, 2019 @ 9:54 AM CDT
Published on Wednesday, July 17, 2019 @ 9:52 AM CDT
Good leaders are afraid to make waves but great leaders cause tidal waves.
Great leaders are risk-takers. There are no more “safe” jobs, “safe” relationships, or "safe" havens. Every great leader took a risk. A good number of people have great ideas for great businesses but would rather die than try. The degree of your success will be determined by the degree of risk you are willing to take. Anybody can swim in shallow water but big fish are only found in the deep. Only risk-takers win big in the end. What are you willing to risk to recover what you’ve lost or to gain what you long for? If you are unwilling to take a risk, you may as well take a seat and watch life pass you by - because it will. Take a risk and work it. No pain no gain. No risk no reward.
Published on Monday, July 1, 2019 @ 9:32 PM CDT
Published on Monday, July 1, 2019 @ 11:38 AM CDT
Samuel said to Saul…”Is it not true, that though you were little in your own eyes, you were made the head…?” – 1 Samuel 15: 16-17
Saul was the first King of Israel. Hollywood couldn’t have cast a better character for the role. He was tailor-made for the part. He was tall, had a commanding presence and was strikingly handsome. Even more, he was selected and appointed by God Himself to rule.
While many things plagued him, chief among them were two – where he came from and how he viewed himself. As the prophet Samuel was speaking to Saul about his impending kingship, Saul said wait a minute, “Am I not a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel, and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? Why then do you speak to me in this way?” (1 Samuel 9:21)
He couldn’t believe that he of all people had been chosen to lead a nation! He was appointed, anointed, cheered and revered. Yet, he saw himself as a little weasel, coming from a family of little weasels and never viewed himself as the leader God had chosen him to be. It ended up being his downfall. He led out of a small-minded disposition which later cost him his position.
No matter if on paper you’re the leader or if your name and title are on the door – you will only be what you inwardly believe yourself to be. Has God made you the head, yet you still see yourself as the tail?
Published on Wednesday, June 26, 2019 @ 10:22 AM CDT
Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, "Your name is Simon, son of John - but you will be called Cephas" (which means "Peter"). - John 1:42
When Andrew brought his brother Simon Peter to meet Jesus, Jesus said, "You're Simon, son of John - but you will be called Cephas (i.e., Peter, i.e., a rock)."
Simon had no idea what Jesus was talking about. He was just a fisherman not "a rock."
While Simon himself and others could only see Simon for who he was, Jesus knew Him and called him by whom and what he would become. God sees and relates to us the same.
Where you are is not where you will end up and you are not yet who and what you will become. Persevere and be patient with yourself. It took a while and many failures before Simon the fisherman indeed became Peter the rock.
Published on Saturday, June 22, 2019 @ 5:19 AM CDT