We have a wonderful model in Daniel. Daniel’s setting is in the time of the Exile. The first six chapters are a mix of prophecy and real life stories of the faithfulness of Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. The faith of these four young men is an example for every generation of perseverance in the face of any kind of difficulty. Daniel is also a great example of someone disciplined in prayer.
Knowledge is not the key to a deeper, more disciplined prayer life. A new plan is not the key. The key is solely in our own discipline.
The evidence of Daniel’s passion and commitment to prayer is found throughout his story.
• Prayer was the habit of his life. “As was his custom” is one translation of Daniel 6:10.
• He was known for praying with discipline three times a day. (Daniel 6:13)
• He invited others to pray in times of crisis. (Daniel 2:17-18) This was his first response upon hearing of the king’s decision to execute all of the wise men of the kingdom, including Daniel and his 3 friends. He began his prayer by blessing the name of God.
What do we learn from the discipline in Daniel’s life? First, we learn something about what keeps us from the discipline of prayer.
Two Warnings about the Discipline of Prayer
1. Avoid either Extreme in establishing a disciplined prayer life.
• No Discipline—Obviously, we have to have some parameters of discipline.
• Legalism—To the point that prayer lacks the relationship. Prayer is not something we check off our list for the day.
2. Satan will go to the extreme in keeping you undisciplined in your prayer life.
You want some interruptions in life? Commit to praying. You want some unexpected busyness? Commit to praying.
Samuel Chadwick said, “The one concern of the devil is to keep Christians from praying. He fears nothing from prayerless studies, prayerless work, and prayerless religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks our wisdom, but he trembles when we pray.
Ask God to help you to have the discipline of Daniel.
(This post is based on the message “How to Keep on Praying” which you can watch at fbclaf.org/video)