“Pray in confidence”
Devotion In motion
“Then Daniel went to his house, and made the decision known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, that they might seek mercies from the God of heaven concerning this secret, so that Daniel and his companions might not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.” “Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. So Daniel blessed the God of heaven.” Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, for wisdom and might are His. And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding. He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with Him. “I thank You and praise You, O God of my fathers; You have given me wisdom and might, and have now made known to me what we asked of You, for You have made known to us the king’s demand.”
Daniel and his 3 friends were in a pickle. The King had ordered that all the wise men in the kingdom should be put to death. Because you see, he had asked the Chaldeans ( wise men) to come and interpret his dream. A dream that he knew was so important but he didn’t know what it meant concerning his kingdom. And so they came and asked him to tell them the dream but he said that they were to tell him the dream and then interpret it. Of course they couldn’t and he became incensed and ordered all the wise men which included Daniel and his 3 companions to be killed.
So when Daniel Found out he called Arioch and asked if he could have an audience with the King and it was granted. He asked the King to give him a little time and he would do what the others could not. The King gave him a stay of execution.
So what he did was, he called his 3 friends and told them what was going on and they held an all night prayer meeting, believing that God would not only give them the interpretation but let them know what the King’s dream was.
There are 4 elements to the way that these guys came before the Lord and prayed. And we need to adhere to these principles if we want our prayers to be answered.
1: “They were Set Apart to God”
Daniel and his friends lived a separate life. Others were drinking the king’s wine, eating the king’s meat, but Daniel had already purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the things of the world (1:8).
We need to understand that God does speak to us today. The problem is the wax of the world has plugged our spiritual ears. In Matthew 13, Jesus said that the cares of this world and the lust for riches choke out the Word of God. God is speaking. The question is, are we listening—or are our ears so plugged with the things of this world that we can’t tune in to His frequency?
An native American was walking down Wall Street with a fellow stockbroker. A businessman who had grown up on a reservation suddenly stopped and said, “Did you hear that?”
“Hear what?” his colleague asked.
“Listen,” he said, walking a few steps to a gutter and picking up a little cricket.
“How in the world among all these people and hustle and bustle and horns and traffic, did you hear the sound of a single cricket?” his friend asked.
“It all depends on what your ears are tuned into. Watch this,” he said, as he tossed a quarter on the sidewalk. As it hit, everyone stopped.
No one heard the cricket, but they all heard the quarter. It all depends on what you’re listening for. Does God speak? Yes. But the problem is that our ears are so filled with the sounds of the world that we don’t hear His voice.
“No partying for me,” Daniel said. “I’m going to seek the Lord.” And that’s why he was in a position to hear from the Lord.
They were set apart and dedicated to God
Look if you want to be heard by God, you need to be set apart and dedicated to God and so you need to give your life to him.
You need to die to yourself and live for him.
You need to be born again Jesus said, and you do that by confessing Jesus as lord and Savior of your life and believing that God raised him from the dead and that he sits at the right hand of the Father right now. Invite him into your heart and ask him to lead and guide all the days of your life. That’s a prayer he hears 100% of the time.
you need to be set apart and dedicated to God to be heard by God!
2nd: They had an “Expectation”
“Give me a day,” Daniel said, “and I will show you the interpretation.” In other words, Daniel knew God would speak to him. When you ask the Lord for His guidance or His Word, Dedication is where it begins. Expectation is the next step. You’ve got to believe the Lord is going to speak.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord James 1:5–7
If I really believe the Lord is going to speak to me in my morning devotions or when I’m at a Bible study, I’ll always have pencil and paper ready. James says the person who doesn’t believe the Lord will speak will not receive anything from Him concerning wisdom and direction. Therefore, when you have your morning devotions don’t lazily and halfheartedly say, “I wonder if there’s anything in the Word for me today,” but come eagerly and expectantly.
3rd: There was a Fellowship
Daniel went to his friends and said, “Let’s seek the Lord together.” Over and over in His Word, the Lord teaches us that we are not to live in isolation but to live in fellowship. If you want to hear the Lord’s voice, follow the example of Daniel who sought the Lord with his friends.
Jesus said that wherever two or three are gathered in His name, He would be in their midst (Matthew 18:20). It’s not that He’s not with us when we’re alone—it’s that there’s another dynamic that comes into play when we seek the Lord with our brothers and sisters. It’s all part of His plan to develop a body that is linked together and dependent upon one another.
4th: They had a desperation
Daniel and his friends knew that if the Lord didn’t give them an answer, they were dead. We don’t often seek the voice of the Lord because we don’t think our situation is dire enough to bring before the Lord. That’s how the early church initially felt. It wasn’t until James was sawn in half by Herod that the church got on her face before the Lord and prayed with intensity on behalf of Peter. And, as they prayed for him with desperation, Peter was delivered miraculously (Acts 12).
We never know what lies around the corner in our lives, with our jobs, with our children. We don’t know what tomorrow holds. Therefore, we can’t afford to take life casually. James tells us we don’t have because we don’t ask (4:2). Kids get into trouble unnecessarily because parents aren’t praying desperately. Divorces and separations occur tragically because, when things were going smoothly, the couples weren’t praying together consistently. I’m convinced all kinds of trouble comes our way unnecessarily because we think we don’t need to pray.
We need to realize that we’re at war, that Satan goes about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). So, we need to keep our guard up and our knees bent. We need to be building a wall of protection around our families and around our lives personally. If God allowed us to see the very real dangers that surround us, I guarantee we wouldn’t be so casual.
Prayer of Cyrus Brown
“The proper way for a man to pray,”
Said Deacon Lemuel Keyes,
“And the only proper attitude
Is down upon his knees.”
“No, I should say the way to pray,”
Said Rev. Doctor Wise,
“Is standing straight with outstretched arms
And rapt and upturned eyes.”
“Oh, no; no, no,” said Elder Slow,
“Such posture is too proud:
A man should pray with eyes fast closed
And head contritely bowed.”
“It seems to me his hands should be
Austerely clasped in front.
With both thumbs pointing toward the ground,”
Said Rev. Doctor Blunt.
“Las’ year I fell in Hodgkin’s well
Head first,” said Cyrus Brown,
“With both my heels a-stickin’ up,
My head a-pinting down;
“An’ I made a prayer right then an’ there –
Best prayer I ever said,
The prayingest prayer I ever prayed,
A-standing on my head.”
Daniel was given an answer in order that he might pass it on to Nebuchadnezzar, That the God of the Universe might get the Glory!
In Genesis 18, as the Lord and two angels moved toward Sodom and Gomorrah to destroy the city, the Lord said, “Shall I not show Abraham the things that I am going to do? For I know him that He shall command his children and make My ways known to them.” God knew that His friend, Abraham, would pass on His words to his children.
Revelation from the Lord is not necessarily given to those who treat it merely as an interesting insight. It is given to those who will faithfully pass it on to others.
The ultimate Word concerning anything you need to know about life and eternity is found in listening to and learning of Jesus. It all starts there. Then, having been in touch with the living Word, you will be in position to receive the directive word concerning your specific situation.
Learn of Jesus. Listen for Him. Believe that He will speak to you—and I guarantee He will speak to you.
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