Daniel had been a prisoner in a strange land for about 60 years. He had done well for himself, he was a senior civil servant and had the trust of the king. But he was still a prisoner and his people were prisoners.
And, then, as he studied the sacred writings of his people he started to realise that the time of exile was limited and under God’s control. God had promised to bring them back home and God had put a timescale on it – and that time was nearly upon them.
And so Daniel turned to God and prayed – recognising God’s faithfulness, acknowledging the faults of the people which had caused them to be exiled – and begged God to do what He had promised.
A powerful story of someone who had a deep understanding of God, someone who recognised that God was in control and would achieve His plans, someone who was prepared to engage seriously with God on behalf of his fellow countrymen and women.
A challenging story as it asks us questions about our understanding of God and how much we are prepared to pray for His blessing on us, His people.

Reading: Daniel 9:1-19

Questions:

  • Daniel’s prayer depended on the nature and character of God. How much does our understanding of God inform our prayers?
  • Daniel was willing to pray on behalf of his entire nation, his fellow people. Are we willing to pray “big prayers” for big situations?
  • Which of God’s promises for the church, for ourselves, are you really trusting in? Are you diligent in prayer that God will accomplish them?