Daniel 6:10 – Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.
The decree signed into law by Darius became public knowledge. However Daniel, knowing of the decree, followed his customary practice of going to his own room three times each day to pray to God. Daniel’s prayer was first a prayer of thanksgiving as he acknowledged God’s goodnesses to him. His prayer was also a prayer for guidance and help. Undoubtedly the responsibility of his high office rested heavily on Daniel and he sought God’s wisdom in the decisions he had to make. Daniel was more than 80 years old at this time. He was about 16 when he was taken captive 66 years earlier. So because of his years he may have also sought God for physical strength to carry on his heavy duties. Daniel made no attempt to hide his devotion to nor his dependence on God, even though it now meant disobeying a governmental decree. Daniel would not and could not look to Darius for the guidance and strength that he knew God alone could supply. Apparently his opponents knew where and when he prayed, so they went to his room at the time and, as expected, found him praying. Through it all, God honored Daniel and ultimately delivered him from the lions den and destroyed his accusers.
This picture of Daniel’s faithfulness to God and to prayer is a wonderful example for us all as we persevere through trying situations. Have you ever been told that you cannot pray at your school, or your workplace, or perhaps even your own home? Prayer is being challenged in many public places these days. Some college coaches have been forbidden to pray on the field even when a group of players initiate the prayer. Even though there are those who would rather prayer be stifled, I hope you still regard prayer as the single most powerful thing you can be doing in your time of giving thanks, moments of desperation, or when you need strength. Challenge yourself this week to make prayer to God your priority. Like Daniel did, pray to the Lord and thank Him for who He is in your life. Seek Him for daily guidance and long term direction for your life. Finally, ask Him for the strength you will need to carry you through heavy workloads and great responsibilities. You never know who may be watching you as you are in prayer to the Lord. Perhaps your faithfulness in prayer to God will be exactly what someone else needs to begin seeking the Lord on their own behalf. May the Lord use you and may He bless you.