This devotional was written by Robin Dugall
But Daniel made up his mind not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king.— Daniel 1:8 (NLT)
I heard a pastor preach a message a few years ago that stuck with me. Several things he said during that half an hour have burrowed their way deep into my soul and have actually made a difference in how I live. He said something that is very dangerous for anyone to say. He told us to repeat these words after him,
“There’s not enough time to get it all done.”
Time management books, seminarists, even your co-workers and friends probably communicate a different message, namely, that there IS enough time to get it all done and the reason you can’t seem to make it work for you is that you are doing the wrong things. I have spent my entire life on a search for how to make all of life work. I want to be the best at everything that I do. If I’m not hitting on all cylinders, I feel defeated. I’ve been on a search for how to make life work because I’ve firmly believed that I had to get it all done. Do you ever feel this way? I have come to realize that it is just not possible – and that’s okay.
In the book of Daniel in the Old Testament, there is a story in the opening chapter that addresses these concerns. The story tells us of four young men who have had their entire lives turned upside down. They have been taken from their home, they are in exile in Babylon and they are having a new lifestyle forced on them. They’ve had their names changed and their whole lives upset by new standards and expectations. In the middle of the first chapter, Daniel has to make a choice about eating the king’s food. Amidst all the pressure to succumb to a long list of new expectations, the story tells us that Daniel chose to say “no more.” In doing so, he chose faithfulness to God and was blessed in the process.
Now, you and I face similar situations daily, not with food from the king’s table, but with our time. You and I have to decide daily who or what is going to be cheated and who or what is going to get our attention. The choices that you will make today will either bring you in line with the life and will of God, drawing you closer to His purposes or they will move you further from Him. I urge you, choose faithfulness to God. Invest in the choices that fulfill God’s purposes in you. And, for the rest, join Daniel in saying, “no more.” These are hard decisions to make, to be sure, but you, like Daniel, will find yourself blessed..
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1. What is the pace of your life lately? What are those things that are constantly looking for your attention? How do you feel about those things?
2. Is your pace of life drawing you closer to God or pulling you away from Him? To what can you say “no more”? How will you act on that today?
Daniel 1; Mark 10:17-31; Hebrews 4:13
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