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Heart Matters

"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.” Daniel‬ ‭1‬:‭8‬ ‭(NKJV)‬‬

The month of February has been known for various holidays and special themes; some include Black History, Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, Heart Awareness, etc. In looking at some of these special moments in the month I was drawn to where the month comes from. Did you know February comes from the Latin word februa, which means “to cleanse?” It was named after Februalia, the Roman festival of purification, which was a month-long festival of purification and atonement that took place this time of year. This year the Lenten season begins on Valentine Day, the heart’s day, also on the day that many begin times of sacrificing, reflection, and the journey to the passion of the Cross. These all are heart matters.

Our verse today stems from the story of Daniel and the three Hebrew boys encountering the new decrees of the king. The king desired that the boys have a certain regiment because he wanted them to be strong physically and intellectually. Daniel decided in his heart that we don’t need that kind of regiment, we will do away with the king’s meal. They sacrificed by eating vegetables and drinking only water, declining fine meats and wine. Daniel and the Hebrew boys kept up their sacrifice yielding them to be ten times better than those who ate the king’s proposed meal. As you begin this Lenten season what heart matters have you purposed to deal with? What are you sacrificing to be better in 2024? It may be a physical, spiritual, mental, or financial heart matter, but be like Daniel and resolve that I’ll give up or sacrifice what I like for what’s best in my life. How are you approaching your heart matters?

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