“Be it known…that we will not.” Da 3:18
The higher you climb in life, the more certain people will try to assert control over you. Their threats can sound real, and the consequences of ignoring them, intimidating. Look at Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. Their commitment to God landed them in a fiery furnace heated seven times over. But it also promoted them to a place of great blessing and influence. Their story teaches us that for something to be an authentic test of character, it must be a situation in which the outcome is not in your hands. You simply make the choice to do what is right before God and leave the consequences to Him. It’s a trial by fire, but it’s a fire of refinement, and on the other side of it you come out stronger. Each time you do the right thing, choosing to embrace rather than escape the path God has called you to walk, you enter a new level of freedom. And as Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego discovered, three things happen: (1) You are set free from the “Nebuchadnezzars” who claim to have control over the outcomes of your life. (2) You are set free to say no to those who would try to use and manipulate you. (3) You are set free to serve your all-powerful King and say no to all the other pretenders who really have no power over you at all. In that moment you not only gain insight into who you are, but more importantly, Whose you are. And God will do one of two things: develop you in the fiery furnace, or deliver you from it. Indeed, He may do both!