Tuesday, 3 March 2020

The Daniel Prayer

How did Daniel Pray?

Daniel is my favourite character in the bible. His unrelenting service to God, his fearlous courage in the face of mortal danger and his devotion to God's kingdom are in the top echelons of service. He became vegetarian so that he would not have to eat meat that was sacrificed to idols. I was thinking about diet and what I eat now to what I used to eat as a vegetarian. And, truthfully I think I would be glad never to eat meat again however I'm not sure I could stay healthy that way. Meat is the least reactive and also gives me a noticeable boost in energy and mood. Too bad some animal has to die for my needs. However, it is impossible for us to live without animals making a sacrifice of some sort. The truth is that our lives demand sacrifices of other living creatures. That is just the truth that we cannot get away from. We could just simply eat less, to our requirements instead of treating food as something of pleasure. However I do think that God intended us to enjoy our food. It is a blessing to eat and enjoy but probably just not to excess.

So how did Daniel pray? He knelt which is something that people did not do so much of at the time. Even today Jews do not kneel down I do not think, they stand and rock back and forth to pray. He also had the window open to the temple and he thanked God for all that he was blessed. Daniel was blessed too! He was blessed with unwavering faith, great intelligence, love of his nation and great stamina as well as determination to have the temple rebuilt.

Daniel prayed three times a day. This seems very regimented but I think it was a dedication. He was living amongst  people who opposed God, whose practices were against God. He needed to keep his mind on God at all times and this was a way to do that. He wanted to remind himself of who he was in God and not in relation to others whose beliefs were diametrically opposed to the one he loved most.

Should we pray three times a day in thanksgiving? Prayer is not something that is set for prayer times and format. It is something that comes from the heart. I think it would be a good practice to pray at least morning and night. And maybe a quick thanks giving prayer before lunch would be a good idea just to remind yourself of who you are and your real identity in the universe. You are not merely going about your daily business but you are ultimately serving God, you are ultimately submitting to his will in all things so what is mundane becomes sacred. Gods love for us is a great blessing, how can we repay him? We cannot but he can be thankful by serving him everyday in every way. For this, we need to remind ourselves of who is our true king and saviour; and that's where multiple prayer times can be useful. However, we must not make it mandatory so that we feel guilt if we miss a prayer time, rather we should pray as we remember during the day and especially when we feel overwhelming emotions. We also do not need to kneel rather just take a moment by ourselves so that we can commune with God and speak directly to him. God hears our prayers so let us pray and thank him for all that we have in Him.

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