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Saturday, April 14, 2018



1 My times are in thy hand;
my God, I wish them there;
my life, my friends, my soul, I leave
entirely to thy care.


2 My times are in thy hand,
whatever they may be;
pleasing or painful, dark or bright,
as best may seem to thee.


3 My times are in thy hand;
why should I doubt or fear?
My Father's hand will never cause
his child a needless tear.


4 My times are in thy hand,
Jesus the Crucified;
those hands my cruel sins had pierced
are now my guard and guide.

***

I don't know when it was, the last time I sang or heard these words from the 19th century hymn writer, William Freeman Lloyd but it is no surprise that the refrain has been playing itself in my mind these last few days.

In the midst of the current political and world climate, it is easy to become fearful, even afraid of what the future may hold.

Lately, I've been finding great comfort in the life of Daniel.

As a young man, Daniel was taken from his life in Jerusalem and carted off to Babylon to serve in the King's household. The book of Daniel, in the Old Testament, spans the next 60 or so years. Daniel was exiled, away from all that he held dear for the rest of his life.

Daniel saw many atrocities against man and endured countless attacks on his faith during his lifetime. He faced death many times, including one night in the lion's den.

Interestingly enough, the only time Daniel expresses fear is when he is in the presence of angelic beings. Daniel 10:7 is one example:
And I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, for the men who were with me did not see the vision, but a great trembling fell upon them, and they fled to hide themselves. So I was left alone and saw this great vision, and no strength was left in me. My radiant appearance was fearfully changed, and I retained no strength. (Dan 10:7-8)
So what does Daniel's life in Babylon have to do with us today?

Daniel was able to live his life in exile, not only live but thrive (Daniel 2 tells us that the King promoted Daniel to a high position and bestowed on him many rich gifts) because he believed, without a shadow of a doubt, that God is sovereign over all things.

Daniel's ability to face his accusers, to be compassionate to an evil king, and to write the book of Daniel as an encouragement to the Israelites was only possible because of his humble response to the Creator and Sustainer of the universe.

Daniel had peace because he understood that nothing happens outside of God's ultimate control. This Truth can be difficult to grasp. Firmly believing it, even when we don't understand, comes down to faith.

Faith is born when we bow our heads to Jesus as Lord but it takes flight when we begin believing God's word as Truth. [click to tweet]
The holy God of Israel, the LORD Who saves you, says: "I am the LORD your God, the One who wants to teach you for your own good and direct you in the way you should go. (Isa 48:17)
Spending time with Him and in His word will give us the assurance and peace we need to overcome the fears cultivated by a God-less view of world circumstances. [click to tweet]

Daniel believed having only visions of a victorious end. How much more should we, having experienced the indwelling of the Holy Spirit given by the risen Savior, believe in the hope that is set before us!

What will it take in your life for you to know that God reigns?

Shalom,


Sharing inspiration here:
#TellHisStoryFaith On Fire, Grace & Truth,
Inspire Me Monday, #HeartEncouragement,
Thoughtful Thursdays#w2wwordfilledwednesday,
Sitting Among Friends, #Glimpsesofhisbeauty
Counting My Blessings, Grace Moments,
#DanceWithJesus; Imparting Grace

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If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June