1 – Prayer/Study of Scripture
In Daniel Chapter 1 and 2, we immediately see that prayer is an integral part of his every day life. Communion with God was not something he merely turned to as a last resort. Instead, it was something he exercised 3x a day for over 80 years as a regular diet to feed his spirit. According to Daniel 9:2, we know that he was also a student of the Scripture, which helped him not only survive, but THRIVE in the midst of Babylonian culture. Further reading on prayer as a core component of our school DNA.
2 – Lifestyle of Consecration
Before the pressures of Babylonian-living impacted Daniel, he had already purposed in his heart to live holy as unto the Lord. In Daniel 1:8, we see him setting himself apart and giving his teenage years to God. This desire came from his family ties and upbringing, even before he entered the “University of Babylon”. For the modern teenager, this may be expressed differently than in Daniel’s day, nevertheless, the struggle to be holy still exists. At The Daniel Academy, we help students create an environment where they can call one another higher, instead of trying to force holiness on them. By creating an environment conducive to consecration, students often choose this lifestyle for themselves, which propels them for decades to come. Further reading on consecration.
3 – Enduring Friendships
Relationships are absolutely essential for all of us, no matter what phase of life we are in. We cannot overestimate the powerful influence of those around us in shaping our walk with God. By helping students and families learn how to navigate friendships, we are actually helping cultivate a family atmosphere within our community. Friendship at TDA goes far beyond the lockers, to a place where students become one another’s greatest cheerleaders, believing the best and seeing what the Lord intends for each other.
The beauty of being a family partnership school is that parents and faculty are closely knit together in the united purpose of raising children academically, relationally, and spiritually. Friendship is a core component in expressing the Daniel lifestyle, but more importantly, it is a fundamental pillar of the community we are a part of in the Body of Christ.
Results of Living the Daniel Lifestyle
The three components of the Daniel lifestyle echo the instructions of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 4-6). In many ways, prayer and study of scripture, consecration, and healthy relationships are all part of Christianity 101. The result of giving ourselves to these components is profoundly noticeable both on the spiritual and practical levels.
In Daniel 1:17-20, he was given supernatural favor and skill because of his dedicated lifestyle before God.
“… God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom; and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams…and in all manners of wisdom and understanding about which the king examined them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers who were in his realm.”
The Hebrews of the day would have understood this to be both in the physical and spiritual contexts, because in their culture, there were very blurry lines between the spiritual and natural worlds. Along that blurry line, we see Daniel thriving in the midst of a culture which did not believe in God.
At the Daniel Academy, we believe that walking out the Daniel Lifestyle (echoing the Sermon on the Mount) is instrumental in raising young people academically and spiritually. It is often said, “It takes an entire village to raise one child.” As we have seen since the school’s inception, the result of this has been young people going into multiple spheres of influence and impacting the world around them. It’s time to start raising up young standard setters for the Kingdom of God and it starts one child at a time. It starts with us.