Archive for ‘Excellence’

July 4, 2012

Living a Life of Integrity

In the last two posts, we’ve been discussing Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael—the four Hebrew princes taken captive to Babylon.  We’ve discussed their spiritual resolve to not assimilate as well as the God-Factor, both of which allowed them to excel to the top positions in Babylonian government.

A Life of Integrity

Today, we’ll be discussing a similar prince in a similar situation.  Joseph, the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, was transplanted against his will to Egypt, the empire that controlled the world at that time, as a mere slave.  Sold by his brothers to his distant cousins, the Ishmaelites and Midianites, they bought him to Egypt and sold the 17 year old to Potiphar, a chief officer in Pharaoh’s government.  For the full story, read Genesis 37; 39-47.

While in Potiphar’s home, he rose above all the other common slaves and slave masters until he became the governor of Potiphar’s estate.  His power was so widespread that the Bible tells us Potiphar only worried about what he had to eat (Genesis 39:6).  Potiphar did well to utilize Joseph’s talents in his home; unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife took notice of Joseph and believed him to have “special talents” as well.  So she threw herself at him.

This is where Joseph’s integrity and quality truly shined through.  Had Joseph forgotten his God and his integrity, he could have easily become puffed up with his talents and gifts without repentance that are without repentance (Romans 11:29), but Joseph feared the Lord and respected Potiphar, so he ran.

And what did Joseph get for his integrity?  Slammed in jail.  But God looked out for Joseph and even though he was technically a prisoner, he rose to the same position as governor in the prison.  The warden favoured Joseph so much so that he entrusted Pharaoh’s imprisoned cup bearer and baker into his care.

While in prison, both servants had two seemingly similar dreams, but with drastically different results.  God enabled the young man to interpret their dreams, and they came to past just as he said.  And what did Joseph get for prophesying the reinstatement of Pharaoh’s cupbearer?  Forgotten.  But God did not forget him.

Joseph’s integrity, paired with God’s favour, caused him to be brought before Pharaoh to describe and interpret two troubling dreams he had.  His gifts literally made room for him (Proverbs 18:16).  But not only that, his integrity with Potiphar and the prison warden enabled him to rise above his unfair lot in life.

God gave Joseph the description and interpretation of Pharaoh’s dreams to Joseph which pleased Pharaoh, intimidated Pharaoh’s courtiers, and caused the young Hebrew to be promoted to the position of governor or prime minister over all the land of Egypt.  Most may believe that this is the end of Joseph’s testing, but that is not true.  The last true test involved how he treated his family after he’d ascended to the second highest throne in the land.

When a famine prophesied in Pharaoh’s dreams came to past, Joseph’s brothers were driven to Egypt to buy grain so their families wouldn’t starve.  He could have had them thrown them into jail without a moment’s thought if he had allowed himself to harbor unforgiveness in his heart.  He could have given them a punishment to fit the crime and it would have been just by man’s law, especially with all of Egypton his side.  But Joseph had integrity.  He tested his brothers, made sure his full blood-brother was still alive, blessed them, and bade them return to Egypt permanently.

In every level of testing, “from the pit to the palace”, Joseph never forgot his God or his integrity.  I would that so many of us were as steadfast!

Are You a Person of Integrity?

Joseph’s integrity seeped into every aspect of his life; in fact that is what the word denotes.  It means to be whole; the same through and through.  And the truth of the matter is, if Joseph did not have good character in one area, it would have eventually seeped into the other areas of his life.  Like a beverage spilling onto a pile of napkins, the liquid will not stay on the top, but seep further and further down until every layer of the pile is affected.  So what does your life look like?

Do you lie to your kids or spouse?  You’ll start to lie to your employees.  Do you list tax write-offs that shouldn’t technically be added to the list?  You’ll likely start mismanaging your company fund or finances.  Whatever your problem area is, you first need to admit that it is a problem or even a sin, depending on what the issue is. God can fix it if you let Him.  And when He does, you have the opportunity to right your wrongs and become true person of integrity.

When you operate in integrity, God will bless and favour you like He did Joseph.  Whether people acknowledge your character or not, God will and He will do it for all to see.  Choose now to live a life of integrity!

Previous Post: “Keeping the God-Factor

 

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com

June 27, 2012

Keeping the God-Factor

Last week, you might have read my post “Don’t Eat the King’s Food or Drink the King’s Wine!” based on the experience of Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael—better known as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego—being taken captive to Babylon.  We focused on the refusal of eating and drinking from the king’s table in order to avoid his influence of doctrine and spirit which was wholly intended to help assimilate them into Babylonian culture.

Removing the God-Factor

Today our post will focus on the God-factor in the young Hebrew men’s names.  When King Nebuchadnezzar took the Judean princes captive, one of the first things he did was change their name.

  • Daniel became “Belteshazzar” or “Baltasar”
  • Hananiah became “Shadrach”
  • Mishael became “Meshach”
  • Azariah became “Abed-Nego”

This renaming was not just a foreign king exercising his royal captor rights over his new captives, but it was a pointed effort to remove the “God-factor” from their names and replacing it with a “god-factor”.  But to better understand this, let’s look at what the names mean.

  • “Daniel” means “God is my judge”
  • “Hananiah” means “the grace of the Lord” or “Jehovah is gracious”
  • “Mishael” means “who is what God is?” or “He that is the strong God”
  • “Azariah” means “the Lord is my help” or “God has helped”

The Babylonian or Chaldean names they were given are as follows:

  • “Belteshazzar” or “Beltasar” means “keeper/revealer of the hidden treasures of Bel” whom the Babylonians worshiped
  • “Shadrach” means “inspiration of the sun” which the Babylonians worshiped
  • “Meshach” means “of the goddess Shach” Shach being the Babylonian Aphrodite [Greek] or Venus [Roman] whom the Babylonians worshiped
  • “Abed-Nego” means “servant of the shining fire” whom the Babylonians worshiped

Nebuchadnezzar no longer wanted to hear the “El” in Daniel or Mishael nor the “Ah” in Hananiah and Azariah because it was the reference to El Elion and Jehovah and other names of God; with their Hebrew names every time someone called their name, they called on God.  But with their new Babylonian names, the false gods of the Babylonians were called upon instead.

You may be wondering as fascinating as this teaching is—hopefully you think it’s fascinating—what does this have to do with writing or building a business?  Glad you asked!

Keeping the God-Factor in your Work

The God-factor in your ventures and endeavors may not be as literal as changing a name from Judeo-Christian to pagan; however, it is possible to have it and even to remove it.

You have heard me speak of Tolkien’s theory of Sub-creation before, and I will mention it again here.  Sub-creation, the ability to create within our own spheres of influence, mimicking the Ultimate Creator, is an excellent way of keeping the God-factor in your work.  It is possible to have it as a non-Christian, but it is all the more effective and evident if you are a believer.  When you sub-create, you see God’s hand in your work whether you write about Him overtly as I am or whether it just happens to be the spirit of a piece such as in The Chronicles of Narnia series and even in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

You can also keep scriptural values and mindsets in your work whether it is your office or your blog.  I don’t [usually] preach in my DA Weddings blog, but I silently uphold the Gospel by refusing to celebrate or encourage homosexual “marriages” or commitment ceremonies.  Furthermore, anyone who works for DA Weddings in the future will have to maintain that value in their work as well.  Also in many various pieces I write as well as in my Desired Assistance company mission, I firmly believe in operating in a spirit of excellence, much like Daniel.

Keeping the God-factor could mean that you refuse to take on a particular project or accept a particular client.  It could mean that you discretely shun the language typical for a particular scene or publication.  Whatever your “Babylon”, God will allow you the ability to work in a secular, ungodly environment and maintain your relationship with Him.  And when the time comes, He will use you to demonstrate His supernatural power in a way that will elevate you and exalt your before the world.

Previous Post: “Don’t Eat the King’s Food or Drink the King’s Wine!

Reference Video Series: “The Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory” (Bishop Tudor Bismark).

 

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com

June 20, 2012

Don’t Eat the King’s Food or Drink the King’s Wine!

When we as Christians think about the spirit of excellence, we automatically look to the prince, Daniel, as our example.  His [cousins] Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah—better known as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego—also shared in this spirit of excellence.  But how did they achieve it?  Let’s find out!

Refusing the Influence of Babylon

At the very beginning of the Book of Daniel, we are introduced to the four young men as well as their pathway to excellence.

“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself….So Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had set over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, Please test your servants for ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink.  Then let our appearance be examined before you, and the appearance of the young men who eat the portion of the king’s delicacies; and as you see fit, so deal with your servants.’  So he consented with them in this matter, and tested them ten days.  And at the end of ten days their features appeared better and fatter in flesh than all the young men who ate the portion of the king’s delicacies,” (Daniel 1:8; 11-15).

Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah—princes ofIsraelbrought captive toBabylon—respectfully refused to eat the meat and drink the wine of King Nebuchadnezzar.  It was not that the food and wine were evil in and of itself, but rather what they represented.

In the spirit, the king’s meat represented doctrine which is closely related to bread in the Bible which as we know represents the Word (Acts 2:42; 46).  Therefore, if we “eat” from an evil king’s table, we eat of his influence.

Similarly, the wine or drink of the king represents his spirit (Amos 9:13 AMP; Revelation 14:8).  Wine is even nicknamed as “spirits” because it has the propensity to influence a person and make them act a certain way that is out of character.  Therefore, if we partake of the king’s wine and drink, we partake of his ungodly spirit.  Do you want that? I don’t.

Thus, the four Hebrew princes decided not to “defile” themselves and instead chose to refuse the kings richness and ate fresh vegetables and water and milk.  And when the eunuch charged with their care saw the pleasant appearance of their countenance, he never tried to feed them anything but their special diet again.

The Results of the Princes’ Nutritional Abstinence

Upon the princes’ graduation from “Babylon University”, King Nebuchadnezzar personally examined all of the young captive graduates and found that the four were “TEN TIMES BETTER than all the magicians and astrologers who were in ALL HIS REALM” (Daniel 1:20), TEN TIMES BETTER!

Now let me break this down to you. Babylon, the seat of the Babylonian empire, the greatest empire in the world at the time, was an absolute cesspool of Occultic practices.  All of the “wise men” or “magi” of the time who were considered the best in the world, were there.  These people were psychics, necromancers, witches and wizards, mediums, pagan priests/priestesses, and many more who excelled in their demonic professions and practices, yet Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah excelled them all!  The learned men including the advisors and counselors of the king and the heads of “BabylonianUniversity” were completely outshined.  Just as Joseph had outshined the wise men and magicians of Pharaoh’s court, so did these young princes.  Not to mention that the Bible says they were TEN TIMES BETTER “in all matters of wisdom and understanding” which mean they exceeded every Chaldean [Babylonian] expert in every subject.

Don’t Let Babylon Influence You

Three years ago this month, I heard Bishop Tudor Bismark preach a message on this very subject.  In it, he stated that the “system [ofBabylon] is designed to attack young people” (The Kingdom”, King Jesus International Ministry).  He could not have been more right.

When Nebuchadnezzar took the Northern Kingdom of Judah, he took the very best of the kingdom.

“Then the king instructed Ashpenaz, the master of his eunuchs, to bring some of the children of Israel and some of the king’s descendants and some of the nobles, young men in whom there was no blemish, but good-looking, gifted in all wisdom, possessing knowledge and quick to understand, who had ability to serve in the king’s palace, and whom they might teach the language and literature of the Chaldeans,” (Daniel 1:3-4).

He took the most handsome, the most intelligent, the fastest learners, and the most socially adjusted young men from among the royal family and upper echelon of society and took them back toBabylonto indoctrinate them with their culture, religion, and overall thinking.  In short, they wanted fully assimilated Hebrew princes so you could not tell the difference between Hebrew and Chaldean.  It’s a very smart plan if you plan on assimilating an entire people, detaching them from their God and history, as well as shifting the future of their lineage.

Newsflash: you may be in New York, London, or Lagos, but Satan’s demonic plans to forcefully assimilate you into his kingdom has not changed.  The spirit of Babylon still seeks to take your talents, your God-given gifts, you ideas, concepts, and inventions and claim them for his own use.  Don’t give in!

Don’t drink the spirit of the age whether it be apathy, passivity, or lukewarmness.  Refuse to eat from his doctrines of tolerance, homosexuality, free love, and other doctrines of devils.  If you do, you will be assimilated into the Babylonian culture of our day like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah’s undiscerning and unrecognized peers.

All of the gifts God has given you, literary skills, entrepreneurial ventures, vocal abilities, brilliant inventions, and more will never be fully realized in you unless you fully submit them to God and refuse to be influenced by the dark kingdom.  Every good and perfect thing comes from God (James 1:17); don’t let Satan use your good for his vain glory.

Previous Post: “Plagiarise for Jesus

 

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com