What does it mean to be truly set apart? This is a question I’ve been struggling with for quite sometime. Why? Because it means dying to myself and letting God take total control.
I love to read. I haven’t done it as often as I would like to lately but a few years ago I read a series called Black, Red and White by Ted Dekker. The books are about a man whose life is lived between worlds. Eventually he has to decide which world he will stay in. But making that choice means he has to die. It means he has to give up what he has in order to gain even more.
Sound familiar? It should. It’s what Jesus asks of us each day. Each day we wake up is another day to do what Daniel did when he was taken into Babylon. In Daniel 1:8 it says that he purposed in his heart not to defile himself with the food and wine that was offered him. See Daniel didn’t “purpose in his heart” when the food was presented. He had made up his mind long ago to serve God. Because of that decision he already knew how he would respond when faced with temptations and trails. Now I know what you’re saying “that’s only food and wine, what’s so wrong with that?” Well nothing on the surface but when you dig deeper you realize that was more about what the food represented.
By eating the food and drinking the wine Daniel would have become just like everyone else-a Babylonian but God had something special planned for Daniel and it required him to be 100% set apart even in a pagan world like Babylon. He had to stand out so that he could tell people about God.
Which brings me back to my struggle. I am going to let you in on a little secret-I’m not Daniel. Everyday I wake up and purpose in my heart but everyday, minute by minute I make choices that keep me in the world. It’s getting tiring but also feels comfortable because it’s what I’ve known.
But tomorrow is another day. Another day to bask in God’s grace. Another day to get it right. Another day to purpose in my heart. So as I walk out this journey to live a life set apart for Jesus ask yourself this question?
What do you need to purpose in your heart to do?