Thursday, January 13, 2011
Then he said to me, "Do not fear, Daniel,
for from the first day that you set your heart to understand,
and to humble yourself before your God,
your words were heard;
and I have come because of your words.
Have you ever wondered why God does not seem to hear or answer your prayers?
To understand the answer to this question, we need to stop praying as the pagans pray and begin praying as the godly men of old prayed. But, I am praying Godly prayers ... you say? Do you feel God's presence? Are you receiving answers to your prayers that are beyond what you imagined? God has more in store for each of us than we ever dreamed possible. We need to start praying from the viewpoint of being children of the Creator; rather than ordinary people floundering in the problems of daily life.
God’s Word gives us wisdom that we need to consider and stand on ... in order to better position ourselves to receive God’s attention and supernatural answers to our prayers.
For about twenty percent of Americans, these are very difficult times. Sometimes God needs to get us to this point in order to get our attention. We naturally have a tendency to slip into the ways of the world. Some of us may have just become caught in the resulting tidal wave brought on by foolish financial decisions by politicians and others in positions of power, but regardless, we are adrift at sea. Sometimes this is a result of our unconscious decisions, sometimes deliberate … but there we end up, nonetheless. And God allows us to suffer the consequences of our prideful and self-centered decisions. As we enter this New Year, I find myself struggling in the midst of that twenty percent who have fallen upon hard times. On a personal level, I have no excuses, I am responsible for my dilemma. As He did with the prodigal, God uses our problematic times to get our attention off of the worldly foolish affairs of men, and onto resting in Him and faithfully focusing on and looking to Him for the solutions.
Have you ever had a supernatural answer to your prayers? I have ... a number of times, and believe me it is definitely different than anything I have ever experienced before. When God answers you this way, there is no question that He is in control. His solutions are beyond your imagination. And nothing compares to the knowledge of the reality that God is at work on the solutions to your problems. But rather than focus on my personal experiences, we will look to the Lord’s model and then we can follow the lead of Daniel and expect the same results.
Supernatural results to problems that are beyond our control.
First we must understand what I mean when I use the word supernatural. Defined, supernatural means: “Of or relating to existence outside the natural world; attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces; of or relating to a deity; of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.” We are not praying to a god that we do not know. We are praying to Jesus, the Savior, the Master, and Creator of all things. He is the God over the wind and the seas, and all things living and dead, seen and unseen. He causes volcanoes to erupt, and puts the rainbows in the sky. He is all knowing; all powerful, and ever present. He is the beginning, and the end, and everything in between. He is capable of giving us the answers and solutions to any and all problems. He never sleeps. He is always there for us. He is God, and He will hear us and answer our prayers.
But He will only answer our prayers according to His ways and His thoughts … not ours.
Some key facts in having God consider and answer our prayers; are that we first must truly believe He exists, that He actually hears our prayers, and absolutely answers our prayers. “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts, is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” James 1: 5-8
Okay now, let’s be honest with ourselves. Are your prayers doubting … or are they in total confidence that God will deliver and guide you? We are all double minded to a point. The question is: "Have we truly humbled ourselves in the sight of the Lord" or is our old worldly man playing god in our lives?" We can only be stable when we seek Him and place our trust in Him, and Him alone. Men, including ourselves will always fail us, in the end. Only Jesus Christ is always faithful.
Why did God answer and give wisdom to Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego supernaturally? Because they were living supernaturally. “As for every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king consulted them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and conjurers who were in all his realm.” Daniel 1:20. Because they were determined to follow God and His teachings faithfully, and to not bow down to false gods. Their disciplines were followed right down to their food and drink. To decide to not eat the king’s food was definitely a life and death issue. “And the commander of the officials said to Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has appointed your food and your drink; for why should he see your faces looking more haggard than the youths who are your own age? Then you would make me forfeit my head to the king.” Daniel 1:10. I know this is hard to believe, but as we have witnessed, some crazy people today behead people for more ignorant and foolish reasons than this, such as: “you are an American, or you are a Jew”
Let’s get one point clear: From the first moment of Daniel’s prayers, God heard him and sent an answer and a solution. We do not need to be afraid. We are to be confident, faithful and secure. Even if physical death is God’s answer for us, that is a victory. “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.”
So what do we need to do to be viewed by God as He viewed Daniel and his friends? How can we have ten times more wisdom than those who are considered the wisest men in the world? We need to follow the model of Daniel and God will hear and answer us. Be careful and humble … our motives must be pure. “But as for me, this mystery has not been revealed to me for any wisdom residing in me more than in any other living man, but for the purpose of making the interpretation known to the king, and that you may understand the thoughts of your mind. Daniel 2:30. Wisdom from God is His wisdom, not ours. But He will supernaturally create the circumstances and the way of escape for those who are faithful to Him.
I am convinced that the end times are possibly very near. I am also convinced that America will fall from its current number one power position before the rapture and the return of Christ. This would mean we will all experience trials possibly much worse than the great depression. We must trust in the creator and deliverer. We are citizens of another kingdom and our king is the Father and Creator of the universe. “But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were NOT A PEOPLE, but now you are THE PEOPLE OF GOD; you had NOT RECEIVED MERCY, but now you have RECEIVED MERCY.” 1 Peter 2:9-10
"No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it."
God Bless you my friends, Bob