Theme of the Week: Trusting God
Bible Verse: “If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” Daniel 3:17-18 ESV
Scripture Reading: Daniel 3:1-30
The famous story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego is a favorite of Sunday School teachers. Their trust in God seems absolute. To a furious king they say that even if God doesn’t save them from death, they still won’t worship the king’s idol. Their confidence in God is unwavering.
But it’s not the confidence of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego that speaks to us in our struggles to trust God. It’s what they don’t know about God that we should consider. They don’t know what God will do next. They don’t know if God will let them die. They don’t know if they’re about to experience pain. Yet, they trust God. How?
They have a big understanding of God. Unlike Nebuchadnezzar’s idol, which can be measured (3:1), they worship a god who cannot be contained. This story is a contrast between the infinite God and a finite “god.”
Trusting God during a hard season will be easier if you keep a big understanding of God in your mind. God is an all-powerful and infinite being who defies categories outside of “I AM” (Exodus 3). When we think we know all there is to know about God, we set ourselves up for disappointment or sin. We judge everything that happens to us against our expectations of God instead of actually trusting the person of God. Such scrutiny can lead us to miss the miraculous right in front of us.
For all that we can know about God, there’s more about God that we don’t know. God is personal, God is loving, God can be known—no doubt. But we don’t have the capacity to fully understand all there is to know about the creator. The God who gave you your grandpa’s nose also created an ever-expanding universe. When your life gets turned upside down, remember the bigness of God. Like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, you can place your confidence in God “even if” you can’t possibly see a positive outcome.
Prayer: Dear God, please forgive me for ever thinking that I have you all figured out. In this season, when it’s hard to trust you, I will rest in the knowledge of your indescribable power and sovereignty—especially when I can’t see the way forward. You are big, mysterious, and wise beyond my comprehension. Even if this season continues to be hard, I will worship you, my God. Amen.
Reflection: Spend some time reading the stories in Daniel this week. Pay close attention to the characters in each story and the trust-related trials they face. A running theme in the book of Daniel is that despite how things appear, God is in control.1
1 Tremper Longman III, The NIV Application Commentary: Daniel (Zondervan, Grand Rapids, MI, 1999), 19.
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