At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead. To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds. Daniel 1:15-17 (NIV).
Today we learn that God was setting the table for something that was about to happen. Last time, Daniel boldly put his trust in the Lord, knowing that good would come of it. It was a cheeky move, refusing to follow the royal diet, but Daniel couldn’t do it in good conscience. Now, we begin to see he was blessed for it. God gave Daniel and his companions good health, but also knowledge and understanding of learned things. To Daniel, God gave the unique ability to understand dreams.
Tell me: how is God setting your table today? He has given you special talents, knowledge, abilities, experiences, and passions that nobody else on the planet has. How are you using those to further His kingdom and your welfare?
And do you understand that we are to do that – use our talents to further Jesus’ kingdom and our welfare – in the order listed?
That matters. It’s tithing. It’s work skills. It’s hobbies. It’s interests. It’s past-times. We are here to learn to love the Lord more by using what He gives us to display Him in our lives. When we do our best, it’s like we’re sharing a little Jesus. And when we share a little Jesus, He gives us more to share. I know: in a hostile world, it makes no sense, but when exactly did God promise that everything He did would make sense to us?
After all, why would being able to understand dreams matter? Why would it matter to Babylonians that Daniel’s ‘posse’ was learned and wise? When you’re worried for your life, what good is that anyway?
In the way of the Lord, it’s ALL good. It’s the worry that doesn’t matter. God was moving the pieces on the chessboard of Daniel’s life so that he would be ready to serve Him through the Babylonian king. Being well fed on vegetables was the act of faith that God would use to prepare His servants to do wonderous things of which we still speak today. If God did that for Daniel, He can (and does) do the same for me and you. So, again, how is God setting your table today?
For further reading: Exodus 23:25, Job 12:13, Colossians 1:9, James 1:5, Daniel 1:18
Lord Jesus, reveal to me, I pray, how You want to use me today. Help me to see the opportunities You put before me to serve Your Kingdom better.
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