Monday 17 March 2014

Bible Book:

“Ah, Lord, great and awesome God, keeping covenant and steadfast love with those who love you and keep your commandments, we have sinned and done wrong, acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and ordinances.” (vv. 4-5)

Daniel 9:4-10 Monday 17 March 2014


Daniel has recently had a vision that described the end of timewhich he did not understand. He became so perturbed by the contentof this vision, which the Angel Gabriel came to help interpret forhim, that he became ill and depressed. Out of this depression comesa heartfelt longing to make amends for his wrongdoings and that ofthe people (Daniel 8:15-27).

Daniel's confession begins with acknowledging the nature of hisrelationship with God describing it as being covenantal, which Godholds with all the people who love God and keep God's commandments.So he establishes the parameters of those in relationship with Godand the kind of relationship that they should have. There isemphasis on rules and regulations (the commandments) which to usmay sound rather controlling of the relationship. However thisprobably helps Daniel assess the failings of the people on whosebehalf he is making this confession.

I notice how Daniel is speaking on behalf of others and thisresonates for me with those who do this for us today. Near MarbleArch in London is a religious community who are hidden away inisolation. Their members spend their days in prayer to God to whomthey are ever faithful in their prayer life, much like Daniel.There was a time when religious communities were far more plentifulin both size and quantity. I remember feeling how good it was thatthese hubs of prayer were there for us and the world, confessingand acting for good in the way they were gifted to do on behalf ofus all. People are called by God to be faithful in prayer, just asGod is faithful in "steadfast love" towards us.

To Ponder

  • Prayer can be seen as linking us all between heaven and earth.What religious communities are near you? You may wish to reflect ontheir role in your local community and how much you know aboutthem.
  • Like most aspects of our relationship with God confession isbut a part. How much is confession a part of your prayer life? Howhelpful do you find it or not?
  • Our faithful God delights in our constancy and the ongoingcreation which we can encourage. Consider how your prayer life mayreflect this. 
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