Come out of the dark. The pressure of life builds up for everyone. How we handle that pressure can make or break us. Many people choose to cope with that pressure by indulging in private sin. That momentary escape gives them a brief respite from the stress of life. Unfortunately, that temporary fix becomes a necessity. It starts taking up more time than we want it too. Soon we find ourselves in a place where we can’t stop and we are too embarrassed to seek help. When we finally get exposed there is a sense of relief but there is still that pull to run back to our dark place. We can get free from that bondage that ensnares us. Come out of the dark and turn to Jesus.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.
People love their dark places. They know it is wrong but they hold it with everything they have. The pull of sin is stronger than most people think. We can walk in the light for a period of time but eventually, we veer back to our secret vices and hidden places. The only thing that breaks this is repentance and being filled with the Holy Spirit. We cannot resist temptation under our own power. It takes divine strength to resist and overcome. It is not a one-time thing, it’s a daily decision and battle to flee temptation. Satan would like nothing else to convince you that you can do it yourself, you can’t. Seek the Lord, confess your struggle to another mature believer, and ask them to walk with you through this. Come out of the dark today and experience the freedom of living in Christ.
You are not alone. Do you ever feel like you are the only one who is going through your struggle? Everywhere you look everyone is doing great, and you suffer in silence as you struggle with sin or someone being cruel to you. The Bible is very clear that you are not alone. Jesus suffered everything that the rest of us have. He can empathize with us because he has gone through it too. Don’t let Satan push you farther down by getting you to think you are isolated. Stand on God’s Word and find your strength in Jesus.
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.”
Jesus became human and experienced everything we have. Tempted yet He did not sin. He did this so that he could empathize with us. He knows your struggles, and he knows your fears. You are not alone. When we go to Him, we can go with confidence knowing that He has been there and that He has a way through it. Don’t try to get out of your situation, look for how God wants you to get through it. Where we are weak, He is strong. He may be developing a new strength in you. Trust Him with where you are at right now. Walk where he wants you to walk.
Don’t ever struggle in isolation. Go to the leaders of your local church and ask them to pray for you (James 5). If you don’t have that option reach out to me. Leave a comment or go to the contact section and leave me an email. There are people who want to counsel and pray for you. You are not alone.
God makes himself known. We often think if we can’t see something at work it isn’t there. That is often the case of God in our lives. It is easy to forget he is there because we can’t see him. We go on with our normal life without a thought of how God is working in our daily life. Then, all of sudden, God lets us know he has been there all the time. God makes himself known to us and eventually to the nations will know.
‘I will make known my holy name among my people Israel. I will no longer let my holy name be profaned, and the nations will know that I the Lord am the Holy One in Israel.
God made himself known to Israel. Ezekiel had some powerful encounters with God. As you read the last half of his book you start to realize how amazing God is. You see a God who is not content sitting on the sidelines and watching. He is very active in our daily life and won’t be denied what is rightfully his. God is going to be exalted. He will set things in order and make things right. One day the nations will know that he is God.
Is Our Life a Witness?
God still makes himself known in our lives. Is their evidence of the Almighty God in our lives? Do people see the Him working? Is the Spirit flowing out of my heart? Is love a predominant virtue that I am known for? All of these areas are where God is exalted. Sure we want to see him exalted from the heavens but he wants to be exalted in our lives. Don’t lose hope when it doesn’t seem like God is close. Use that time to grow closer to him through prayer and getting into the Bible.
Daniel got a glimpse of heaven. Heaven is often depicted as a place in the clouds with big gates and Peter sitting at a desk letting people in. I’m not sure where this tradition came from but it is far from reality. Sure there will be pearly gates and streets of gold but those will pale in comparison to the glory of God. He will be sitting on the throne and we will want to do nothing but worship him. Daniel gives us a glimpse of heaven.
“As I looked, “thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze.”
Words Can’t Describe
Daniel has this amazing and alarming dream in chapter 7. He sees these horrible beasts that invoke fear. After seeing these he gets a vision of the throne room and the Ancient of Days. That is another name for God. He literally gives Daniel a glimpse of heaven. Daniel uses the best words he can find to describe this picture of heaven.
One day we will stand before God and take in all of His glory. We will fall on our face and proclaim “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord God Almighty!” There will be no more pain, no more weeping, it will be replaced by the fullness of His love. Just thinking about it should give you goosebumps. It will be a glorious sight. Something we should look forward too.
We Are Getting Closer
Until then we should be worshipping Him. The signs of the times show us that we are close. Stand firm in your faith, remain faithful. Don’t retreat or give up. All of this must happen for Christ to return. Then we will see the Ancient of Days and everything will change. For now, we can find hope in the glimpse of heaven Daniel gives us.
Daniel is a person we can model our lives after. He held himself to a high standard, worked diligently, and didn’t waver in the face of opposition. This opened doors to promotions and persecution. You have an opportunity to set yourself apart in the workplace by the work you do and the way you carry ourselves. Let’s follow Daniel’s example.
Then this Daniel became distinguished above all the other high officials and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him. And the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. 4 Then the high officials and the satraps sought to find a ground for complaint against Daniel with regard to the kingdom, but they could find no ground for complaint or any fault, because he was faithful, and no error or fault was found in him. 5 Then these men said, “We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.”
You set yourself apart by the work that you do. Are you highly valued by your superiors? Would you be greatly missed if you left? That is the example that Daniel set. As Christians, our work ethic should be such that we are indefensible. While it may not go noticed and promotions may not follow we do our work for the glory of God. Each day we seek His guidance and provision to do the work we are given.
Stick to Your Principles
Daniel set himself apart, and for that, he wasn’t liked by his coworkers. We have a choice to make at work, do a good job or be liked by our coworkers, rarely can both be done. Daniel chose to do a good job. He was a man of integrity and values. This set him apart from his coworkers and they conspired to get rid of him. He stuck to his principles even at the cost of his life. God was faithful and delivered him from the Lions. We need to trust God in these situations and not fear what man can do to us. Just as the Apostle Paul said: “But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentile might hear it. And I was delivered from the lionʼs mouth.
” 2 Timothy 4:17
Sometimes you can see the writing on the wall. Our future isn’t written on billboards. Wouldn’t it be nice if it was? As you are driving down the highway a sign lets you know what is coming in your future. That would be nice, but it’s not a reality. God chooses to get our attention in others ways. We see one such instance today in Daniel 5. King Belshazzar receives a message from God in a very abrupt way.
“Suddenly the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall, near the lampstand in the royal palace. The king watched the hand as it wrote. His face turned pale and he was so frightened that his legs became weak and his knees were knocking.”
Could you imagine eating dinner one night and God starts writing on the wall? What destiny would God write? What would he warn you about? In Daniel, as King Belshazzar was eating dinner with his guests a hand mysteriously appears and starts to write in a language he doesn’t understand. The only one who could interpret is Daniel. What Daniel had to say wasn’t good, King Belshazzar’s life would be taken tonight!
What Would God Write on Your Wall?
Of course, King Belshazzar was a wicked person and he had the sacred vessels from Israel brought to celebrate the feast. This angered God and that night Babylon fell. The lesson here is that we need to live our life with the knowledge that God is watching what we do. For some that will produce sudden fear, for others it will provide comfort, for most, it won’t change anything. The question is that if God was to write something on your wall what would it be? Would it be “Well done thou good and faithful servant?” Would it be “Depart from me, I never knew you?” Maybe it would be “I’ve given you so much, I wish you would do more for me.” One day the writing will be on the wall, we will give an account of the life we lived.