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Affluent Investor | June 23, 2017

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Extravagant Faith

faith PUBLIC DOMAIN

Have you ever made a commitment to do something by a certain deadline and had no idea how to do it?  How did it turn out?  If you’re like most, it probably turned out better than you expected.  You created the need for the information in faith and then set out to achieve your objective.

We have been looking at Daniel the last few weeks and will do so for a few weeks more, which should take us up through Christmas. Daniel made a similar commitment to do something he didn’t know how he would do, and it saved lives and changed the course of history. Let’s look at what he did and see what you and I can learn from what I am calling Purpose Faith.

WHO CARES?

When Israel was conquered by Babylon, the conquerors relocated Daniel and his friends to Babylon to assimilate them into their culture. They changed Daniel’s name, forced him learn a new language and culture and made him an eunuch! You can say that Daniel went through a major life transition.

Then the king had his famous dream that troubled him so. He wanted his wise men to interpret the dream, with one catch. The king refused to tell them the dream. He wanted them to tell him the dream and its meaning. That seems pretty unreasonable to me. When they could not, the king threatened to kill them all.

So then Daniel heard about the predicament the king had created. He could have said, “Who cares? I didn’t want to be in this heathen place anyway. Let them all die!” Yet that was not his heart and spirit. Rather here is what Daniel did: At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him (Daniel 2:16). Daniel had faith that God would show him the dream and the interpretation! What happened next always boggles my mind when I read it. I am sure it will boggle yours, too.

GOD CARES

Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven and said:

“Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his”

– (Daniel 2:17-20).

Obviously God cared about the lives of the king’s advisers, for He showed Daniel the dream and its meaning. What faith Daniel had to commit to do the impossible! He put high expectations on the Lord and God came through. He was not afraid to draw on God’s infinite wisdom.

Which brings us back to you and me. How high are your expectations in the Lord? What are you asking God to do that seems impossible to others? What have you committed yourself to that, if the Lord does not come through, you will look foolish? What need have you created for new information you don’t have today so you can do new things tomorrow?

Daniel was a remarkable man with extravagant faith, but he applied that faith abundance to everyday life. It is no wonder that God exalted him to a high place, for Daniel learned how to partner with God to make the impossible ordinary. You and I would do well to imitate his example and then set our expectations high so that God will empower us to do great things for Him in the power of our purpose. Have a great week!

 

Originally posted on The Monday Memo.

John Stanko was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and attended Duquesne University where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics in 1972 and 1974 respectively.

Since then, John has served as an administrator, teacher, consultant, author, and pastor in his professional career. He holds a second master’s degree in pastoral ministries, and earned his Doctor of Ministry from Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Pittsburgh in 2011.

John founded a personal and leadership development company, called PurposeQuest, in 2001 and today travels the world to speak, consult and inspire leaders and people everywhere. From 2001-2008, he spent six months a year in Africa and still enjoys visiting and working on that continent, while teaching for Geneva College’s Masters of Organizational Leadership and the Center for Urban Biblical Ministry in his hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Most recently, John founded Urban Press, a publishing service designed to tell stories of the city, from the city and to the city.

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