"Darius, son of Ahasuerus, born a Mede, became king over the land of Babylon." Daniel 9:1 (MSG)
This is the week that 2009 winds down and we look in earnest at the coming year. It is the week we'll hear every television and radio station giving their list of the Top 10 this or that from the previous year. My wife and I have already noticed the increase in quit smoking pharmaceutical commercials on television as the drug companies try to capitalize on those new year's resolutions.
On the eve of a new year it's natural to look back and to look forward. The past year was a difficult year in many respects and I don't know what 2010 will hold. Yet, I'm reading through the book of Daniel and thinking about the mega-shifts that Daniel experienced in his life. He was torn away from his family and home as a young man and taken captive to a foreign land. He rose to prominence under the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar, then survived brief reigns by Nebuchadnezzar's offspring. In today's chapter, the Medo-Persian king Darius has taken power. Nevertheless, Daniel remains secure in his position.
Daniel's life was spent focused on serving God and being obedient. As a result, he remained secure in tumultuous times. While all around him there were tremendous shifts in power and government, Daniel seems to have stood in the eye of the storm.
As I look forward to 2010, I take that image of Daniel standing in the eye of life's storms. No matter what the coming year(s) hold, my responsibility is to remain focused on being obedient and content.