Tag Archives: abstinence

How Do I Look?

I’ve heard the account of Daniel, Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego many times and for many years. But when I recently read about Daniel’s desire to abstain from the kings food, I found myself wondering what it is I am ingesting myself. Not the chips I ate yesterday, or the big piece of angel food cake I had for dinner last night. I’m wondering what it is I’m feeding my soul.

What do I read, watch on TV? What is it a pastor or teacher or friend or blogger has said? The Bible tells me to guard my heart. How am I doing?

If I’m watching acts of sin played out on TV, what is that doing to my heart’s condition before God? If I go to a church with a “God is Love” theology without preaching the truth about his holiness, is that effecting my relationship with God? Is the music I listen to slowly separating me from God’s Presence? Relationships, thoughts, what I do in secret, are feeding my soul.

The difference in Daniel and his friends was noticeable They looked better than everyone else because of the food they rejected, the pure food they ingested. 

I wonder if people, when they look at my life, can tell I’ve feasted on God’s Word and abstained from what was offered to me by the world. I want to look different: better, more joyful, kinder, more honest. I want to BE a person others identify with my Savior.

 

 

August 3

Jeremiah 46:1-28; Daniel 1:3-21, 2:1-49; 2 Kings 24:7

Lately I have been considering what a life ‘set apart’ means. It seems God has been nudging me toward this idea often as I read his Word. 

People I hold dear have differing opinions. Some drink alcohol, some don’t. Some watch sit-coms on TV, some don’t. Some go to R rated movies, others don’t. 

Is ‘set apart’ an attitude? Is it a life-style?

Daniel is certainly an example of a life set apart. He refused an order of the king so as not to compromise on his commitment to the Lord. And we read that Daniel was blessed by God because of his decision.

Once again I am reminded that as a Christian, my life needs to look different than that of a non-Christian. The choices I make every day need to reflect my association with Jesus Christ. If I abstain from certain things in Jesus’ name I also need to do so with joy, in love.

Daniel’s eyes shown. He thought more clearly and was wiser as a result of his abstinence. And the king noticed the difference.

May others notice a difference in me and want what I have. May they see Christ in me and be drawn to him because of the life I lead.