Day 2

Faithfulness in Babylon

from the Daniel reading plan

Daniel 1:8-21, 1 Samuel 12:24, 1 Peter 2:11-17

BY Alena Pitts

Do you ever wonder what it means to be favored by God? Or do you ever think about what it looks like to have God’s hand on your life? I thought I knew, but the longer I live the more I realize my understanding of God’s favor is expanding.

At the age of ten, God granted me the opportunity to star in a Christian film called War Room. The movie was a box-office hit and has been viewed by millions of people all over the world. Two years later, God gave me the chance to write a three-book fictional series with my mom titled Lena in the Spotlight. Those books have sold thousands of copies all over the world as well.

These were two life-changing events that gave me the privilege of traveling all over the world to tell my story and share the hope of God. Now, at sixteen, I can easily look back and call that God’s favor.

But I need to be truly transparent and honest with you. When I was asked to write on this passage in the book of Daniel, I immediately felt unequipped and unworthy because there is more to my story.

Two years ago my beautiful mother unexpectedly passed away. She was my best friend. She was with me on the movie set, in my writing, and as I traveled sharing my story. Just two days before she died, we were speaking at a mother/daughter conference together. But then she left this earth really suddenly and entered into eternity. I was devastated. It was the most painful day of my life by far, and I still carry it with me.

But would you call me crazy if I called this God’s favor on my life? I wouldn’t have said that two years ago, but now I’m beginning to understand favor a bit differently, maybe more deeply.

Think about it. Do you think Daniel wanted to leave his home country of Israel? Do you think he would have wanted to live in a land that wasn’t his, working for a king that wasn’t his, being asked to serve a god that wasn’t his? I imagine he was pretty saddened by how his life had changed so quickly. But with the blessing of time and perspective, we can see in our readings today how God’s favor was still with Daniel in all of that.

As devastating and heart-wrenching as reality can be, it can often be God’s favor. God’s favor could be anything He has done or allowed in your life in order to fulfill His ultimate purposes. And what is God’s purpose? That people would find Him in the midst of their lives, in their pain and struggle, and come to know that they are deeply loved by Him.

What if, like Daniel, God wants to use your story to help others find Jesus? What if His favor can be found in the things that feel like blessings, as well as the things that are really hard? What if He wanted to use all of your life to show up in your story and lead others home to Him? Would you choose today to view all of it as His favor, working to fulfill His good purposes?

Post Comments (128)

128 thoughts on "Faithfulness in Babylon"

  1. Alicia Hubbard says:

    Thank you for sharing! Thankful for this study also. I am back in quarantine for the second time this year and coming into it, my heart was very negative. The Lord definitely softened it and helped me to realize that I asked for this slow period to reconnect with Him. I just didn’t think His favor would mean I couldn’t leave the house. Overall thankful though!

  2. Shannon Brady says:

    This is such a great reminder that God is always food even when we can’t see and feel it in the moment.

  3. Sarahbeth Howes says:

    God is good.

  4. Lorena Ortiz says:

    Our Heavenly Father is so gracious and Faithful, Thank you our mighty Loving Lord
    Help us in out struggles and let us Hold on to your promises and continue our Lives with Your will and purpose… allow us to walk with You in all circumstances…

  5. Kat says:

    I rarely start a reading plan on time, so I rarely leave comments, and this comment is days late, for today is Nov 10th. I started reading because it is my husband’s given name, but for his whole life he has been called by his middle name. There is power in the meaning of names & I find it fascinating.
    I was so touched by this today and tears welled in my eyes as my heart felt your loss. I too lost my mom suddenly almost 8 yrs ago. I completely understand where you are coming from. It was by far the most difficult thing I have ever experienced, but I too see God’s favor & hand in that loss. Through out that time He kept bringing me Rom8:28, and I still miss my mom terribly. But today I see the circumstances surrounding the loss as the first seeds of what my family is living now. A Rx drug killed her and fast forward to last year, my family has now moved to a different country, opening a Health & Wellness Medical facility with a laser focus on genetics & the fact that we are all fearfully, wonderfully & uniquely made. To God be the Glory. Praying for you, may God continue to show you His hand in all that is before you. 2Cor4:18

  6. Mackenzie says:

    OhMyGoodness! I started Daniel out of the sheer interest in the characters that in the Bible. I totally agree with you, I have gotten on my knees and stated to Him “I leave everything to You” and I have definitely seen the great outcome of doing so. Telling Him to trim away unneeded fat in life, to take hold of my finances, and leave me the only things on earth and in flesh I can control has created peace inside of me that I cannot explain. My anxiety has lessened dramatically, I feel fresh, and everything that I cried four or five months into COVID-19 or regarding American politics has been answered. Keep on with your readings and I pray you find peace as well.

  7. Kari says:

    I too started this yesterday, on Election Day, as God was telling me all weekend that we needed to spend time in Daniel. And I am so glad I listened. Day 1 made me teary, because God is in control, whether we can see Him or not. In Daniel 1:2, it says the Lord handed over Judah. He gave the nation over in order for His glory to shine and be known through Daniel. It had to happen that way, so God could do what needed to be done. And it took years and it wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t easy. But His righteous ones made it through and I’m praying that for myself, for my family and for all of us who know.

    1. Christina Fisher says:

      i love your words. thank you

    2. Christina Fisher says:

      i love your words. thank you.

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