Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Daniel-No Thanks. I Don't Want Royal Food

By Mary Vee
Daniel 1

From Young Daniel's Journal

Photo Courtesy
My name is Daniel. I don't really understand what is going on. Soldiers have us bound like prisoners and yet we are being treated like guests. Does that make sense to you? Me neither.

The chief official escorted all of the boys that had been taken from Judah to a room with a large table. We were instructed to sit down.

The table was polished clean. Several servants brought in plates of food. Rich food we'd only heard about. Wine. Expensive plates and cups. I felt so confused. Were they going to poison us?

My stomach churned. Not because I felt hungry, which I did, but I felt like God was telling me to not eat the food or drink the wine. 

But if we refused to obey, the guards might kill us. If we let the food be set on the table at our place and we didn't eat, the guards might think we were sick and kill us. They had told us that soldiers only selected strong, healthy and smart boys for this job at the palace.

I took a chance and looked at the guard. "May I ask a question?" 

He came over to me. "What is it?"

"We have been raised with a special diet that our God gave to our people. To eat the royal food and wine you are serving would, in a way, make us dirty. May we eat foods from our diet?"

The chief surprised me. First, he let me ask my question. Second he listened to my explanation. Third, he thought about his answer rather than shouting no and hitting me. I quickly prayed, asking God to show us what to do.

The official folded his arms and looked deeply in my eyes. His rough face soften like my dad's would. "I am afraid of my lord the king who has assigned your food and drink. The food we give you will make you strong and bring color to your face. The king will look on you and have me hauled off to be hung all because I wanted to help you."

There had to be some way to make this work. Daniel pointed to his three friends. "Please, test us for ten days. Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then compare our looks with that of the others who eat the royal food."

The official shook his head, and I thought for sure he would say no. He took a deep breath. "All right. But only ten days. Don't prove me wrong."

"Thank you."

Each day, my three friends and I sat at the table at mealtime with plates of vegetables and water in our goblets while the other boys had the rich, royal food. For some crazy reason the vegetables tasted better than we've ever had. The other boys who ate the royal food smacked their lips and tried to share theirs with us. We didn't take any. 

On the tenth day, the official lined all of us up and kept the four of us together at the end. He looked at our faces then at the other boys who ate the royal food. "I am surprised. Shocked. You four boys look healthier than all the others."

He turned to the servants who worked under him. "All of the boys are to have the vegetable and water diet from now on."

Even though we were forced to live in a foreign land bound like prisoners, God made it so we could eat the diet we were use to.

1. What was Daniel confused about?
2. Where were the boys taken?
3. What were they given?
4. What did Daniel think might happen if he asked his question?
5. What happened?
6. After ten days what happened?

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