I always wondered about the king in the account of Daniel in the lion’s den. Was he really so gullible that his advisors convinced him to pass a law that would virtually guarantee the death of one of his best employees? Did he not know Daniel well enough to know that Daniel would never agree to stop worshiping the Lord?
At any rate, I noticed in my fresh reading today that the king was “anguished” about Daniel’s fate. He fasted. He passed on entertainment. He couldn’t sleep. I wonder if he was feeling any fear of retribution from God?
If he had any doubts about the Lord’s existence before throwing Daniel in the lion’s den, they melted away the next morning when he found Daniel safe. He developed a sort of faith of his own after seeing how God protected Daniel in that den. Miracles tend to do that, don’t they…they get our attention?
Other times the Lord’s involvement is more subtle, such as when you receive confirmation that a decision you’ve made is the right one based on the fruit that results from that decision. For example, if you and your husband feel convinced that a major lifestyle change is in order. You think you need to sell your home and downsize to a more affordable living space. The two of you pray about this decision and then put your home on the market and end up selling it for your asking price on the very first day. That would be an indication from the Lord that your decision is one that is in line with His plans for you. He opened the door.
Other times he closes doors, such as the time our home was on the market for six months while we “built” a new one that ended up being released to another buyer because we just could not get our house to sell. Why not? God knew all along that in just a couple of months, my husband would get a job offer in Baltimore and would take it. If we had sold our home and moved into a brand new one, we would not have been able to take that path.
Through it all, we serve the Lord when we acknowledge that He is the door opener and the door closer. King Nebuchadnezzar learned that truth the hard way (by losing his sanity for awhile), but when he learned it, it stuck, and he wrote this prayer:
His rule is everlasting,
and his kingdom is eternal.
35 All the people of the earth
are nothing compared to him.
He does as he pleases
among the angels of heaven
and among the people of the earth.
No one can stop him or say to him,
‘What do you mean by doing these things?’
I am definitely tempted to stand and ask the Lord what he means by closing some of those doors that I want opened! I need to remember the definition of sovereignty and apply it to the Lord! Doors that he closes are closed for a reason. Doors that he opens are opened for a reason.
I pray He will help me discern his fingerprints whichever way the door moves.