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Unbreakable When Your World Is Shaken Up
Thriving No Matter What They Throw at You
We’re going to start this journey with just three simple suggestions today. We’ll get into the actual life of Daniel next week. This sets up the theme for the entire series.
First suggestion when your life is thrown into chaos, when your world is shaken up.
Introduction to Daniel’s life and book
Daniel 1:1–7 NLT
1 During the third year of King Jehoiakim’s reign in Judah, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. 2 The Lord gave him victory over King Jehoiakim of Judah and permitted him to take some of the sacred objects from the Temple of God. So Nebuchadnezzar took them back to the land of Babylonia and placed them in the treasure-house of his god. 3 Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, his chief of staff, to bring to the palace some of the young men of Judah’s royal family and other noble families, who had been brought to Babylon as captives. 4 “Select only strong, healthy, and good-looking young men,” he said. “Make sure they are well versed in every branch of learning, are gifted with knowledge and good judgment, and are suited to serve in the royal palace. Train these young men in the language and literature of Babylon.” 5 The king assigned them a daily ration of food and wine from his own kitchens. They were to be trained for three years, and then they would enter the royal service. 6 Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah were four of the young men chosen, all from the tribe of Judah. 7 The chief of staff renamed them with these Babylonian names: Daniel was called Belteshazzar. Hananiah was called Shadrach. Mishael was called Meshach. Azariah was called Abednego.

What to Do When Life Is Chaotic...

That’s the first thing we’re going to learn from this young man Daniel. Don’t be surprised by adversity.
Although the collapse of the nation of Israel was a shock – it shocked everybody – it wasn’t unexpected. Because the prophets Jeremiah and Zephaniah and others had been saying, “We’re going to lose our freedom. We’re going to lose our freedom. We’re going to lose our freedom if we don’t wise up and stop all this idolatry and other stuff.” As a teenager, Daniel had been hearing this. He heard these preachers. He could hear them in the streets saying, “Guys we’re being warned. We’re going to lose our freedom if we don’t do this.”

1. Don’t be surprised by adversity.

1 Peter 4:12 NLT
12 Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.
Peter is telling us that shake ups are a normal part of life in a broken world.
We do not live in Heaven. In Heaven everything’s perfect. Everything’s done great.
There are no tears, no sorrow, no suffering. But on earth everything is broken because of sin.
Every relationship is broken, everybody is broken, we don’t have healthy minds. The weather is broken; the economy is broken. So we shouldn’t expect things to be perfect here on earth. When something bad happens in your life instead of going, Why me? You might want to say ,“Why not me? I live here on earth.” This is not Heaven. That’s coming later. There are going to be sufferings. There are going to be trials. Don’t be surprised by it.
John 16:33 NLT
33 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Jesus warned us that adversity was going to be a part of life. Don’t let it blow you away. Don’t be surprised. Don’t be shocked. But you need to be unshakeable. I’m telling you so you won’t cave in.
You know what the typical response is when you go through a crisis? The typical human response when I or you go through a crisis is this: The first thing we do is try to figure out who’s to blame. That’s the last thing you need to work on. Whose fault is it? As long as you’re fixing the blame you can’t fix the problem. To blame is to be lame. That’s how you spell blame. So when you blame other people you’re just perpetuating the problem. You’re not solving anything. Politicians love to blame each other. These groups and that group blame each other. Blame is lame.
Instead of asking whose fault it is, you need to be asking what should I do?
There are four sources for every problem in your life:
Number one is you. I am the biggest problem to myself. I cause myself more pain, more heartache from my dumb decisions.

Four sources for every problem in my life...

My old nature
When I get to Heaven all my weaknesses, all those flaws, they’re going to be taken away. So I’m going to be the new improved me. By the way, if you don’t like me right now you’re going to love me in Heaven. I’ll have no imperfections. I won’t irritate you in any way. Of course you won’t irritate me either. Because all your hang ups will be taken away too.
The world
The world is around you and wants to pull you down. The primary way the world tries to pull you down is through ridicule and through withholding approval. We are desperate for the approval of other people. So we will lower our standards and change our convictions and give in and give up simply because we want somebody to like us.
The devil is real. Evil incarnate. The moment you wake up in the morning he’s plotting to discourage you, to defeat you, to create doubts, depression, discouragement, distractions. All these different things. When you get up in the morning if you don’t meet the devil head on it just means you’re headed the same direction, because he’s been planning to take you down. He hates you. God has a good plan for your life; he’s got a bad plan for your life.
Some of the problems and pressures and difficulties you have in life actually come from God. God will sometimes shake up your life for very good reasons. And that’s why I want to cover this in detail because this is the one that is unexpected. And I want you to look at that.
It really doesn’t matter where your problems came from. They could be caused by the devil, they could be caused by the world, they could be caused by you or they could be brought on in your life by God. It doesn’t really matter. God will use every one of them for your good if you will trust him.
He can turn crucifixions into resurrections. He can bring good out of bad. Anybody can bring good out of good but God can change even bad things into good if you will trust him.
So regardless of the source of your shaking, what’s got you all shaken up… I lost my job, I can’t get married, I want this and it hasn’t happened, I have this dream and I’ve hit a barrier – regardless of whatever’s shaking you up God wants to use it for good. So the source isn’t nearly as important as your response.

2. Consider how God might use it for good.

I look for ways that God might use the bad stuff in my life for good. Because he wants to use everything--even the bad things in your life he wants to bring good out of even those. And if you want to succeed and thrive rather than just survive in a hostile culture you need to look for ways that God takes the things that shake you up and can use them for good
Jeremiah 29:11 NLT
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
I’m going to give you a sneak peek at where we’re going in the coming weeks. Because in Daniel’s life God did five things with the problems that he had to face. And they are the same five things God wants to do in your life regardless of what kind of problems you’re going through. So you might write these down. It’s kind of an index for Daniel’s life.

God shakes things up to inspect me.

To inspect me… What does this mean???
What I mean by that is God will bring a problem in my life that reveals a motivation that’s out of whack. Or a character or a thought or an emotion or a motive. He examines it and he checks it out. He does it all the time.
Somebody said people are like tea bags. You don’t know what’s in them until you drop them in hot water.
God will use problems to inspect you and show you what’s wrong, what’s out of whack in your life.
Of course God already knows what’s going on in you. He doesn’t need any problems to tell him. He knows you better than you do. When God allows a problem in your life it’s because he wants you to know what’s out of whack.
Remember in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve sinned; and the Bible says one day God comes walking through the Garden of Eden, metaphorically, and says, Adam where are you? Let me let you in on a little secret. Anytime God asks you a question he already knows the answer.
Jeremiah 17:10 NLT
But I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve.”
Have you ever thought about the fact why it took the Israelites 40 years to get across the desert from Egypt where they were set free as slaves to Israel? You can walk across the Sinai in a couple of months easily. It took them 40 years. Are you kidding me? Why did it take them 40 years to get from Egypt to Israel?
Because the Bible says that while they were in the desert God kept testing them to show them that their faith was insufficient. They weren’t ready to go into the Promised Land. And the Bible says that over those 40 years God gave them seven tests. Seven. And every time they failed God would say, “Okay… another lap around the desert.” Some of them died in the desert. They spent their entire life there. They didn’t pass the test.
Deuteronomy 8:2 NLT
Remember how the Lord your God led you through the wilderness for these forty years, humbling you and testing you to prove your character, and to find out whether or not you would obey his commands.

Ask: What does this problem reveal about me?

God shakes things up to correct me.

Hebrews 12:8–11 NCV
8 If you are never disciplined (and every child must be disciplined), you are not true children. 9 We have all had fathers here on earth who disciplined us, and we respected them. So it is even more important that we accept discipline from the Father of our spirits so we will have life. 10 Our fathers on earth disciplined us for a short time in the way they thought was best. But God disciplines us to help us, so we can become holy as he is. 11 We do not enjoy being disciplined. It is painful at the time, but later, after we have learned from it, we have peace, because we start living in the right way.
Hebrews 12:26–27 NLT
When God spoke from Mount Sinai his voice shook the earth, but now he makes another promise: “Once again I will shake not only the earth but the heavens also.” This means that all of creation will be shaken and removed, so that only unshakable things will remain.
Job 5:17 NLT
“But consider the joy of those corrected by God! Do not despise the discipline of the Almighty when you sin.

Ask: What is this problem teaching me?

God shakes things up to direct me.

Proverbs 16:9 GW
A person may plan his own journey,  but the Lord directs his steps. 
Proverbs 20:30 HCSB
Lashes and wounds purge away evil, and beatings cleanse the innermost parts.
Psalm 119:59 GW
I have thought about my life,  and I have directed my feet back to your written instructions. 

Ask: Where is this problem leading me?

God shakes things up to protect me.

Job 36:16 NLT
“God is leading you away from danger, Job, to a place free from distress. He is setting your table with the best food.
Genesis 50:20 NLT
You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.

Ask: How could this problem be protecting me?

God shakes things up to perfect me.

“After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who calls you to share his eternal glory in union with Christ, will himself perfect you and give you firmness, strength, and a sure foundation.”
1 Peter 5:10 NLT
In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.
Romans 5:3–4 NLT
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.

Ask: How can I grow from this problem?

3. Trust God for things I don’t understand.

Proverbs 20:24 NLT
The Lord directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?
Proverbs 3:5–6 NLT
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
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