Daniel 10:12 “Then he said to me, ‘Do not be afraid, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart on understanding this and on humbling yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to your words.’”
“Do you hear me now?”
These familiar words from a cell phone commercial became a reality to our family this past week. While visiting the state of New York for John-Keith and Naomi’s wedding, we found that in most spots we did not have good cell reception. It is a good discipline to wean oneself of smart phone and computer use once in a while, but there are times when reaching someone immediately is very important.
Sometimes when trying to find where you are going you need directions. GPS systems and quick calls to a knowledgeable friend or family member have almost completely replaced maps. This is well and good until you lose your connection. While driving, Emily, tried to call us for help. Numerous times, the static and garbled voices caused us to move and shout the infamous words, “Do you hear me now?” And numerous times we were distressed by the message “Call failed.”
Other times there is an emergency that needs immediate attention. When one of the groomsmen (whom I will not mention – you can thank me later, Luke) realizes hours before the wedding that he forgot to bring the right pants, it is crucial that one quickly connect with a store to try to remedy the situation. The last thing you want to hear while the clock is ticking down the minutes is the clerk at JC Penney shouting, “Do you hear me now?”
All of these reasons are why I am glad we can call on our heavenly Father any minute of the day and night. Yet often as we pour out our hearts to Him it seems as if we are not connecting. How many times I have desperately called from my knees, “Lord, do You hear me now?”
The prophet Daniel had a similar experience. He had a terrifying vision about a great conflict, which caused him to mourn for three entire weeks. During that time he did not eat any tasty food or perform his usual personal cleansing rituals. He exhausted himself calling on God for help, but it seemed as if God did not hear.
Then an angel came to him and comforted him saying, “Do not be afraid, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart on understanding this and on humbling yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to your words.”
The angel went on to explain that God had heard Daniel’s petition the moment he prayed and sent him to help, but he had been delayed by a great enemy. God did not have a bad connection or lose control of the situation, but there were things that needed attended to first. Even while He seemed silent, He was working on Daniel’s behalf.
I am glad to say that Emily made it to the wedding safely, and JC Penneys had one pair of pants left in Luke’s size, which we purchased with only minutes to spare. Despite our problems with cell reception, things worked out for the best.
But there are still even bigger things I am praying for that have not been answered yet. Unlike when in parts of New York State, I know I do not have to shout, “Lord, do you hear me now?” or worry about receiving the message, “Call failed.” God heard Daniel’s prayers the moment he uttered them, and we can be sure He hears ours, too. Be patient as you wait for answers. They are on the way and God is working on your behalf.