We have been studying the Book of Daniel in our Sunday School Class at St. James United Methodist Church over the past few weeks. During that study, I have learned that Daniel understood a disciplined spiritual life was necessary if he was to live as a faithful believer in God. That was true for Daniel in his day and it’s also very much true for us today. We must live as faithful disciples of Jesus Christ. The study of Daniel proves without a doubt that the basic spiritual discipline is that of prayer. Everything else flows out of this bedrock relationship with God through his Son, Jesus.
We learn from studying Daniel’s life that it was actually his prayer life that got him in deep trouble and eventually resulted in his being thrown to the lions. The fact that Daniel continued to pray to his God – in spite of being warned not to do it – was what put his life in danger. As was pointed out by a good friend of mine, it’s our lack of prayer that gets us in trouble in today’s world. Of course, Daniel was saved from a certain death because of his faith and obedience to God. I recommend the 6th Chapter of Daniel to get “the rest of the story” to borrow a phrase from Paul Harvey. The entire Book of Daniel is one that should inspire each of us to be faithful and obedient to God. It also lets us know that prayer is critically important and how it will sustain us in good times and bad.
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