Friday, October 20, 2023

The Public Power of Private Fidelity

 By: Lauren Thomas 

I find it ironic that short, Instagram videos are called “reels,” when they are anything but real. Social media videos are carefully curated highlights and are rarely an accurate representation of real life. If social media had been around thousands of years ago, this would not have been the case for Daniel’s profile. The events recorded about Daniel’s life – things like the lion’s den and the writing on the wall – weren’t just curated highlights. He lived the same way behind the scenes as he did on camera.


Daniel was carried into Babylonian exile as a young man, and for decades he served there in government roles. Looking at Biblical dates, it is believed that Daniel was in exile for 70 years. Yet, in the book of Daniel, we only read a few recorded events from his life. If I’m doing the math correctly, that leaves a lot of days of Daniel’s life that were not recorded. Days that were silent and unseen, yet so important.

Daniel was a man of fidelity to God. Though his days of fidelity weren’t loud or public, it was during those unseen days that Daniel was building consistency in his faithfulness to God’s commands. And that gained him a reputation. We see confirmations of this woven into the text:


But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king's food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.

Daniel 1:8 ESV


When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where he had windows in his upper chamber open toward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.

Daniel 6:10 ESV


As he came near to the den where Daniel was, he cried out in a tone of anguish. The king declared to Daniel, “O Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?”

Daniel 6:20 ESV


Phrases such as “but Daniel resolved,” “as he had done previously” and “your God, whom you serve continually,” give us a glimpse into the silent days and years of Daniel’s life. His fidelity was about more than public displays, it was about faithful obedience to God.


And his fidelity received God’s faithfulness, not in return or exchange, but in blessing. Daniel’s fidelity also impacted the lives around him. People came to faith in God because of Daniel’s faithfulness. Daniel’s fidelity, his faithful obedience, shook kingdoms. 


So, dear sister, next time you compare or covet the lives you think you’re viewing on social media, remember this: your hidden moments are the place to build consistency in your fidelity to God. If your silent days are marked by faithful obedience, who knows but that your private life will be promoted for God to display his public power. Every dish you wash, every floor you sweep, every baby bottom you wipe, has eternal significance. 



Does your “highlight reel” match your “behind the scenes” life?

How can you use your hidden days to build consistency in your fidelity to God?

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