Posts Tagged ‘Daniel’

Time to Pray

Daniel 9:4b-19 is a prayer Daniel offers to God during the time when praying to anyone other than the king was illegal.  Daniel kept on praying to God anyway.

This prayer Daniel offers in the evening, the time of day when sacrifices would have been made at the temple before it was ruined.  The prayer begins with confession.  The people have abandoned God and now they are facing the harsh life that comes with no regard for God.  They accept responsibility for not living up to the ideals of God.  At the end of the prayer Daniel offers words beyond confession.  Here we find an example of how to cope and respond through prayer to spiritual and physical loss.  When great uncertainty and doubt weigh on us and fear starts to set in, may we pray,

“O, our God, listen to the prayer of your servant and to [my] prayer of request, and for your own sake, Lord, let your face shine on [us].  Incline your ear, O my God, and hear.  Open your eyes and look at our [ruin] and the [people] who bear your name.  We do not present our prayers of request before you on the grounds of our righteousness, but on the ground of your great mercies.  O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, listen and act and do not delay!  For your own sake, O my God, because … your people bear your name!”

The Lord responds, as always the Lord does!  Gabriel comes to Daniel in swift flight and says, “Daniel I have now come out to give you wisdom and understanding.  At the beginning of your prayer of request a word went out, and I have come to declare it, for you are greatly beloved.”

If the Lord responded quickly to Daniel’s prayer of request, the Lord will respond quickly to us as well, for we, like Daniel, are greatly beloved by God.  Wisdom and understanding are offered from the Lord God when uncertainty and doubt weigh upon us.  When fear starts to take hold, remember that God is compassionate and cares for us.

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