September 15, 2016

Daniel 9:22-23 He instructed me and said to me, “Daniel, I have now come to give you insight and understanding. As soon as you began to pray, an answer was given, which I have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed. Therefore, consider the message and understand the vision:”

God does enlighten those who are dedicated to Him. The writer of Psalm 119 said things like, “I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes.” (Psalm 119:99) That’s not boasting, it’s recognizing the source of all genuine insight and revelation. The thing is, the more we are genuinely focused on Him, the less we will be puffed up by what He shows us and the more we will be humbled and grateful for His grace. Given human weakness, sometimes we need special incentives to stay humble. That’s how Paul looked at the physical problem that caused him to cry out to God repeatedly, and God responded with the magnificent revelation that “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9) There is another detail in this passage that is worth taking note of. Gabriel says to Daniel, “Consider the message and understand the vision.” Sometimes God does a “data dump” in our hearts, but initially it makes no sense. We are called to consider what He has spoken to us and apply it in our daily living. That’s what I like best about the SOAP system of devotions. It’s not just reading the Scripture, or even Observing what God has said in that passage (though that is an important step), it is Applying what God has said to your own life and circumstances, and then responding in a Prayer of submission and commitment. We can feel all high and holy in a prayer meeting or Bible study, but the “proof of the pudding” comes in the nitty gritty of daily living. We need regular feeding on the Word, but until we digest it and apply it, it means very little. (James 1:22)

People are sometimes spooked by the insight the Lord gives Cathy and me, even to the point of not wanting to be around us because they’re afraid of what the Lord will show us about them. That’s a little sad, really. We are to keep pressing in for more of God and receiving whatever He tells us or shows us, but never allow that to puff us up. We are to recognize His love for us and be grateful, without feeling that makes us better than others. Any revelation, any degree of understanding, needs to be applied as God intends, for it to be meaningful. We aren’t to ignore what God shows us, much less deny it, but we are always to ask Him what we are to do with it. At the very least we are to pray for those involved, and for God’s perfect will to be done in their situations. We are not to be judgmental, but be open channels of God’s love and grace.

Father, You know every situation with which I’m involved right now. You know what each person is facing and what they need. I do ask Your grace and mercy for each one, and for me as well. May we all operate in grateful obedience to You, so that the schemes of the devil may be defeated and Your perfect will be done, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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