Daniel 1:8-9; 17
But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. Now God had brought Daniel into favour and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs….As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
We’ve entered a time of year when many churches and believers are participating in various fasting and consecration activities. While some Christians see this as a time to become more spiritually disciplined, God uses this practice to accomplish much more in the life of the believer.
When God sees a heart surrendered to Him in fasting and prayer, He sees a person that is ready to receive His supernatural power to carry forward His vision and purpose.
This was true for the Old Testament prophet Daniel. Through the study of Daniel’s life, you can find 3 amazing keys to activate God’s supernatural power in your life.
1. Develop A Determined Heart
Daniel was kidnapped from Israel and taken into Babylonian captivity at the young age of 15. The wicked Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar had created a wartime strategy to assimilate all prisoners of war, thereby eradicating the Jewish culture.
It was risky to defy the king. And certainly, at such a young age, no one would have faulted Daniel for hastily embracing the tradition of Babylon. Yet, Daniel did the unexpected. He made a determination within himself to do something different than what was culturally acceptable.
The bible says,
“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.” (Daniel 1:8)
Daniel was determined not to do what everyone else was doing. He wanted to keep himself clean for God.
Even Moses faced a similar temptation to adopt the Egyptian culture. Although he was a Hebrew man raised in an Egyptian household, the bible records that he chose, “… to suffer affliction with the people of God, [rather] than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; (Hebrews 11:25)
Similarly, you will encounter many cultural practices that are legal and even socially acceptable, but they’re not pleasing to God. What do you need to reject so that you can unlock God’s power?
2. Develop A Prepared Heart
Although Daniel was a prisoner in a foreign country, he never abandoned His faith. He was prepared and committed to pleasing God.
Daniel’s captors were insistent that he stick to the king’s orders to nourish himself with the diet instituted by the king. Instead of worrying about the outcome, Daniel fixed his eyes of faith on the Lord.
He believed that God would keep him in the midst of trouble. He even challenged the leader of his captors saying,
“Please test your servants for ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink.” (Daniel 1:12, NKJV)
Daniel fixed his heart on obeying God, not on the consequences. Likewise, you shouldn’t worry about how things will turn out if you obey God. Instead, follow God’s promises. The prophet Isaiah says,
“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” (Isaiah 26:3, ESV)
If you are not living in peace, it means that God is not the center of your focus. What areas of your life do you need to completely turn over to God so that you can walk in His power?
3. Develop A Reconciled Heart
When Daniel determined he would not obey the king’s command, he wasn’t testing God. He had already
reconciled within himself that he would be obedient to God, no matter how long it took. The eunuch set the time period of ten days, but in reality, Daniel had already reconciled within himself that his defiance was a lifetime commitment to live according to God’s standard. Consequently, Daniel’s faith was rewarded. The bible records,
“And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat.” (Daniel 1:15)
Daniel believed that no matter what, he needed to keep himself holy before God. Even as a
teenager, Daniel demonstrated what it looks like to make God your priority. When Daniel set his heart on pleasing God, he became a person that God could use.
God supernaturally poured out His power on Daniel.
“As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams….And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king enquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm.” (Daniel 1:17;20)
Without any money, influence, or educational advantages God promoted him from a child captive to a national leader.
In the same way, God wants to make you a leader in your generation. He is making you for a specific purpose and task. Daniel lived in a dark time when his people needed hope and a vision.
The same is true today. There are people all around you who need a word of encouragement and a fresh vision for the future. The bible says “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” (Proverbs 29:18)
God wants to use you to reveal His vision for the world to your family, your friends, and your community. All Daniel wanted to do was please God, but God’s plan for Daniel was much greater.