August 9, 2022
THE GEORGIA CAPITOL DEVOTIONAL - 9 August 2022
Being prepared with prompt, godly answers is essential for godly leaders because it seems there is always some dilemma needing attention. In many of those circumstances, you may need to help others resolve the dilemma. In Daniel 2:12-13, however, Daniel and his three friends were dealing with a crisis of their own. We read, “Because of this [the fact that no one had made known his dream or the interpretation as a result] the king became indignant and very furious and gave orders to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. So the decree went forth that the wise men should be slain; and they looked for Daniel and his friends to kill them.”
Finding the wise men would have been easy because they had a college of their own which occupied a particular location of the city. They were similar to most college professors who live near campus. Daniel and his friends had graduated, which is why they would not have been summoned to stand before the king. Nevertheless, their names were on the list of those to be executed, in a case of classic guilt by association. They were not present to reply yet still were grouped with those to be destroyed.
How does one overcome the difficulties created by the ungodly actions of others? Daniel’s example shows that you cannot hide from the problem or blame someone else. He had to resolve the issue quickly. As a result, he responded differently than everyone prior to him.
Daniel stood before Arioch, the captain of the king’s bodyguard, who was prepared to execute him, yet 2:14 says Daniel “replied with discretion and discernment,” which is the reason he was able to remain standing. His discretion is evident in the next verse when he asked Arioch, “For what reason is the decree from the king so urgent.”
Habit #5 in Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits for Highly Effective People is “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” Daniel had to understand the reason for the king’s dilemma in order to address it. If Daniel told Arioch his dilemma – how it was unfair for him to be executed since he did nothing wrong – he probably would have been executed much sooner.
Godly leaders must respond to crises, and most of those are going to be the result of someone else’s actions. Daniel’s discretion and discernment was effective. Seek first to understand the reason for the crisis. Not only learn what caused it, but also what is the godly resolve. Do that consistently, so you develop a reputation as a problem solver, or even a peacemaker to use Jesus’ words.
Capitol Commission Bible Study is next Tuesday, 16th of August (every 1st and 3rd Tuesday during the legislative interim)
Meeting via Zoom and in 318 CLOB (Senate Committee Room) @ 12 Noon