Blessings from Prayer

‚ÄčLord, the experiences of Daniel showed faithfulness to You, steadfastness in the face of persecution, and a dedicated prayer life. We saw the struggle between good and evil, and the triumph of righteousness.

These Jewish boys, snatched from their homes, had been raised to know and honor Your Ten Commandments. Their captors ridiculed, bullied and goaded them. Even the temple food was a challenge. They petitioned captors, after praying to honor You, for the freedom to eat vegetables and water. Their obedience to Your law won them respect.

When Nebuchadnezzar built a splendid gold statue and demanded all worship it, Daniel’s three friends refused to bow down. They were to reap the consequences of refusing. “…the God we serve is able to deliver us…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.”Dan.3,17,18 The king had them thrown into a furnace. You poured Your favor on them. The king watched and saw You walking in the furnace with them. “…the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.”Dan.3.27 They stayed true to the Ten Commandments and won the king’s heart: “…there is no other God who can deliver like this.” Dan.3.30

Lord, nations rise and fall, but Your plans go forward. You are not bound by man’s pronouncements! When Daniel was nearly ninety and Darius then ruled, the righteousness and skill Daniel had won him a strategic place of authority. Proverbs tells us “…the king’s heart is in the hands of the Lord…He turns it wherever He wishes…”Pv.21.1 Jealous accusers had to use the very faithful habit of Daniel’s life of prayer as a means to cause his political downfall–they could find no other target! The accusers got flattered Darius to make a law that none could pray or petition any except Darius–or be thrown into a lion’s den. Daniel openly continued his life of prayer; he was thrown by Darius’ law into the lions. The next morning Darius ran to the den and cried out “…has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”Dan. 6.20 Daniel replied: “My God sent His angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions.”Dan.6.22 Daniel prayed persistently and sought You and Your kingdom. You rewarded him with Your blessing.

Lord, may we pray persistently and seek the reward of Your blessing. May our lives reflect Your righteousness, for You promise us: “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” Jam.5.16

Thanks for praying. Blessings.Nancy