Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Fifth Wednesday of Lent

Nebuchadnezzar rose in haste and asked his nobles, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” “Assuredly, O king,” they answered. “But,” he replied, “I see four men unfettered and unhurt, walking in the fire, and the fourth looks like a son of God.” Nebuchadnezzar exclaimed, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who sent his angel to deliver the servants who trusted in him; they disobeyed the royal command and yielded their bodies rather than serve or worship any god except their own God.”

Standing up for what we believe in can be very difficult, especially when someone with authority over us pressures us to do something we don’t agree with. Sometimes we are asked to do things that go against our faith and morals in order to avoid a confrontation with others or receive some worldly gain. However, no matter who might tempt us to sin, what rewards they might offer to us for doing evil, or threats they might make against us if we do not do as they wish... we must stand for what is right. Perhaps the person tempting us needs to see our courage in order to change their ways as Nebuchadnezzar did after witnessing the faith of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. No matter what happens, if we are willing to yield up our bodies, wealth, fame, success, etc. rather than to turn our backs on God, then He shall reward us a thousand fold for our sufferings. He doesn’t abandon those who refuse to abandon Him.

Are we willing to stand up for our faith, even in the face of those who have authority over us? What sacrifices is God asking of us? How can we become a sign of God’s Power and Glory even to those who would persecute us?

O Lord, we would rather yield our bodies than to serve or worship anyone, but you.


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