Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Normal Prayer

Submitted by Curtis Tucker
But when Daniel learned that the law had been signed, he went home and knelt down as usual in his upstairs room, with its windows open toward Jerusalem. He prayed three times a day, just as he had always done, giving thanks to his God. Then the officials went together to Daniel's house and found him praying and asking for God's help.  (Daniel 6:10-11, NLT)  
Normal Prayer
"What is normal?" This passage says that Daniel “prayed three times a day, just as he had always done.” So, for Daniel, praying three times a day was “normal.” Maybe you remember the story of Daniel in the lion's den from when you were a kid in Sunday school. But, I want us to look at this story with fresh eyes. Daniel lived in a culture where "normal" was very different from the "Law of God" which he had been taught. The culture where he now lived did not value the personal convictions which Daniel felt so strongly. 
Because of Daniel's goodness, he had provoked the jealousy of some of the men with whom he worked. These men schemed to get rid of Daniel in the only possible way they could think of which was to use his commitment to God against him. They had the king sign a law which made it illegal to pray to God … Think about this for a moment. The people could not ask God for anything, they could only ask the king. 
Look at Daniel's reaction. He went home, knelt down as USUAL, (his normal) and prayed! Daniel did not start praying simply because the law said he could not. He did what he always did...he prayed. No protesting in front of the king’s palace, no calling his friends together to stage public demonstrations, no plotting to over-throw the government, and no giving up because the culture was too corrupt so what's the use in praying. 
As Daniel prayed just as he had always done, he gave thanks to HIS God. How do you give God thanks when you have to live in a culture that outlaws prayer, a culture that does not respect life, other people, or God? You have to be "un-normal."  
Daniel's habit was prayer. Is it yours? 
We know Daniel was rescued because he prayed. How about rather than trying to fight our battles through human efforts, we pray and let God fight for us? 
Dear God, thank you for who you are. Today, help me not to react to situations in the "normal" way but to pray, look to you, and trust you. I commit to praying....

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