Daniel, Food & Movies?

by: Larry Davies | Jul 13, 2010

Often it’s the little things that tell the world exactly who we are and what we truly believe.

Take movies for instance. I have always loved watching movies: action, comedy or drama. You name the movie and I probably saw it. My first job in high school was “Usher” at a movie theater. My first promotion, are you ready… was “Head Usher” which paid a whopping ten extra cents per hour. Big deal! I’m not so crazy about movies anymore but I still occasionally rent a video.

Several years ago, I noticed a sign on a door in the back of the video store that prohibited anyone under twenty-one from going inside. “What in the world is behind that door?” I thought to myself. “Well, I’m twenty-one. Let’s take a peek!” Big mistake! The pictures on the video boxes told the whole story. I had no idea pornography was sold in our tiny town. I almost ran out of the store!

What should I have done? What would you do?

a) Turn in my video card and self-righteously tell the owner a thing or two?

b) Continue renting videos? After all, I wasn’t looking at the pornography.

c) Organize a petition drive and a boycott to close down the store?

d) Celebrate the owner’s right of free speech and write a complimentary letter?

Often it’s the little things that tell the world exactly who we are and what we truly believe.

Many years ago, the Israelites were conquered and enslaved by the Babylonians. Several youth were selected among the Israelites to live in the kings’ palace with the royal officials. They would be taught the language and the literature of the Babylonians and given only the best food and wine. They would be trained for three years and promoted to serve as the King’s advisors. It was a grand honor. One of the young men chosen was Daniel.

But Daniel made up his mind not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king. He asked the chief official for permission to eat other things instead.” (Daniel 1:8) The official was alarmed. “If you become pale and thin compared to the other youths your age, I am afraid the king will have me beheaded for neglecting my duties.” (1:10) Daniel suggested a test of feeding him a diet of vegetables and water for ten days. After ten days, Daniel looked healthier.

My mother would say… “Larry, this is why you should eat your vegetables?” O.K. Mom, but this is really about having the faith and the courage to take a stand. When the crowd goes one way… will you go another? Daniel faced a turning point early in life that would mark him forever as a servant of God. It would have been so much easier to go along with the kings’ program. After all, it was just a little food and wine. Arguing could be dangerous. Wouldn’t it be smarter to simply go along? We can always follow God later, can’t we? Sometimes, the answer is… take a stand, now!

Often it’s the little things that tell the world exactly who we are and what we truly believe.

A couple visited the same video store and decided to do something. In front of the store they distributed leaflets. “We are concerned about the influence of pornography on the increasing problems of child abuse, spousal abuse and teen pregnancy. We encourage you to temporarily rent videos from another source until this store discontinues the rental of X-Rated material.

Motivated by their example of courage, I later joined the couple, turned in my video card and eventually convinced the local newspaper to write about the protest. Other churches and ministers took up the cause and urged the community to join in. The storeowner was furious and steadfastly refused to stop… so nothing really changed or did it? Inspired by a couples courage… I changed and others changed. We learned the importance of taking a stand for God, now!

Often it’s the little things that tell the world exactly who we are and what we truly believe.


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