Dare To Be Different

Daniel 1:4, young men in whom there was no blemish, but good-looking, gifted in all wisdom, possessing knowledge and quick to understand  …17, as for these four men, God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom; and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams

Everyone is born with innate abilities, gifts, talent and skills. God has given everyone of us all we need to live a life that is just good enough

Most people will live a life that is just good enough and that is OK

A few people will be the head. A few ministries will better fulfill their purpose than others. A few homes will be happier than others. A few children will excel others

Deuteronomy 28:13, the Lord will make you the head and not the tail; you shall be above only, and not beneath, …

Ps 18:43, … you have made me the head of the nations; a people I have not known shall serve me

You cannot be the head of a “people” if you are like those people. You must set out to be different from the people for you to be head of the people. Being the head requires sacrifice. Excellence in everything requires daring to be different.

James 2:14, 17 [Paraphrased], what does it profit if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead

Praying is good, but this on its own is not enough. Looking to Jesus, we see His habit of waking up before dawn to pray. Then, He came down from the mountain of prayer, went into His world and challenged the status quo. He challenged the false teachers, He challenged the hypocrites, He challenged the legalistic. Jesus continually went over and beyond to shine like the like of the world that He is. Jesus dared to be different.

You must dare to be different to fulfill your destiny, to maximize your potential, and to excel in life and ministry

Daniel had faith and applied works to his faith. He dared to be different in every place he found himself. In every situation, Daniel said,

  • I am not like the others.
  • There is something different about me.
  • I am in this world but I am not of this world
  • I am a child of destiny and I must work on fulfilling my destiny.
  • I am royalty
  • I am the child of the Most High God

Daniel dared to be different

As a church, we must dare to be different. That means we do not seek to be like other churches, but rather, we go out of our way to align ourselves with God’s purpose for our church.

As a husband, I must dare to be different. Loving my wife as Christ loved the Church, i.e. without limit, is not because she is in any way perfect, but rather because that is what God has called me to be.

As a student, your parents will not always be with you. In a High School of 1000 students, there will be a lot of distractions. For any student to excel in the midst of a thousand, that student must dare to be different. Excellence does not just come because of intelligence. It comes because you choose to go the extra mile.

Daniel was intelligent. He was chosen for special training because he had above average intelligence. Yet, he did not rest on this intelligence as being sufficient. He dared to be different for God. So God gave him an extra level of excellence above his intelligence.

God will give you extra if you dare to be different.

How do you dare to be different?

  1. Sacrifice
  • Sacrifice sleep and choose to spend the extra time studying
  • Sacrifice friends. There are some friends that do not care about being different. You must let go of those friends
  • Sacrifice personal comfort. Burning the midnight oil. Waking up before the break of dawn.
  1. Have an eye for the future.

Hebrews 12:2, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God

  • Jesus who gave up personal comfort because He had an eye for the future. He made Himself relevant in the present while keeping an eye on the future
  • Jesus endured the cross because He had an eye for the future
  • Jesus sacrificed Himself on the cross because He had an eye for the future
  1. Make a personal commitment to be different and persevere.

You must be ready to persevere as that commitment will be tested. Once you make that commitment you can expect everything around you to test that commitment. But if you will stand by your commitment to be different, God will grant you favor. God will strengthen you. God will fill you with His wisdom. And God will give you an extra portion of excellence! Daniel was intelligent, but because he dared to be different God gave him an extra portion of excellence

Daniel 1:17, as for these four men, God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom; and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams

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