November 2, 2010 • By Ed Wrather
But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank.... - Daniel 1:8 NKJV.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, "...we have no need to answer you in this matter. ... our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand.... But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up." - Daniel 3:16-18 NKJV.
And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. - Joshua 24:15 NKJV.
Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. - Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV.
Howard Partridge at the age of 73 was faced with a challenge. He is handicapped, and uses a wheelchair; and, he, and his sister were stuck in the snow. They had gone for a drive near Sweet Home, Oregon to view the beautiful fall foliage. That was on Wednesday, by Friday, Howard knew something had to be done if they were to survive. He decided to go for help, in his wheelchair, in the snow. Howard made it three miles to where he was finally found by some hunters. Both Howard, and his 61-year-old sister are reported to be in good condition, thanks to the determination that Howard demonstrated.
Determination, that is what Howard Partridge had, that saved his life, and the life of his sister. Determination, that is what Daniel had, when he refused to eat the king's rich unhealthy food. Determination, that is what Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego had, when they refused to bow down and worship the king's golden idol. Determination, that is what Joshua had, when he determined that he was going to serve the Lord. Determination, that is what Nehemiah had; and David, and Esther, and Noah, and Ruth, and Abraham, and so many of the great servants of God. The apostle Paul had it, when he pressed on toward the goal, even when he faced great opposition that came in many forms.
Determination, can change the impossible into the possible. Determination, can change an ordinary life into an extraordinary life. Determination, can enable you to keep moving forward when everything is saying you should just give up. Determination will give you victory; even when everyone, and everything, says you are headed for defeat.
Who are you serving with your life? Determine today, choose today, whom you will serve. Jesus says, "...seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you (Matthew 6:33)." Determine today to seek first, to put first, what God wants in your life; and, you will see a transformation take place in every area of your life.
Determination, do you have it? Do you have a determination to do what is wrong, or a determination to do what is right? It is your choice. God will not force you to do what is right. As Mordecai told Esther in Esther 4:14b, "Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" Esther determined to do what was right, and she saved the Jewish race. It is no accident that you were born in this time, because the Kingdom of God needs you to determine to do the right thing this day, and forever more.