If you want a real workout, try swimming upstream sometime. It takes a lot of strength to head north when the current is flowing south.
It also takes a lot of strength to stand up tall when everyone else around you is bowing down...just ask Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
As the story goes (in Daniel 3), the king declared that when the signal was given, everybody had to bow down and worship this ginormous golden statue he had set up in honor of himself. Well, our terrific trio, being God-fearing Hebrews, took issue with the idea of breaking the second commandment and refused to cooperate.
The declared punishment for anyone found standing when they should have been bowing was death by burning in a furnace.
So there they were, being threatened with a fiery death. Standing on this end of history, we know that the story ends with them NOT being burned, even though they were thrown into the furnace...but for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, they were ad libbing their lines.
And that's what makes what they said so amazing: "If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty's hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.
Rich Mullins alluded to this story in his song, Where You Are, and makes the point I'm trying to get to. We are not guaranteed that every moment of our life will be smooth and easy, but we are promised that Yahweh will never leave us alone.
Where you are ain't where you wish that you was
Well your life ain't easy, and the road is rough
But where you are is where He promised to be
From the ends of the world to every point of need
Truth is...I am currently in a job transition. I've spent the last seven years as a lead technical writer for the world's second-largest computer network and am deeply experienced in creating clear and concise communications. As of this writing, I do not know what my next paying position will be, but the God I serve is able to open a door that will take care of every point of need my family has. But even if he does not, I want you to know, dear readers, that I will not despair...I will find that he's right there.