“ Courage in Action”

                Courage is defined as mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.  As we read the first few chapters of the book of Daniel, courage is a word that comes to mind.  Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were all friends who were faced with great fear, yet they were able to have the mental and moral strength to withstand whatever danger that the mighty Babylonians had to throw at them.  Stolen away from their home and ripped away from their families, these young men were able to exhibit a faith that most of us have only dreamed of having.  They denied the good gesture of the King to have them eat at his table because they did not want to be defiled.  Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego defied the king yet again when they refused to bow down to Nebuchadnezzar’s golden stature and were thrown into the fiery furnace.  How is it that these four young men would have the courage to be able to look fear and death in the face and have the courage to persevere with their faith?  I could give you a long drawn out answer that would have us considering their Jewish background and education that they had received, along with their family heritage that allowed them to see faith and courage being lived out in the lives of their families.  Or I could go into detail about how the providence of God led them to be there and intervened with divine power to help them face their fears, but all those attempts would be futile.  You see, these four boys were able to face these fears and live lives of strength and courage simply because they trusted in the LORD.  They knew that there was a possibility that God’s plan included them dying for the His sake, yet they continued because they trusted that His will would be done.  From Daniel purposing in his heart in Daniel 1.8, to the other statement of faith in Daniel 3.16-18, these men gained their courage from a strong trust in God.   May we all strive to have a faith like these four young men. 
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