24 Mar

Good morning,

Many culture have had the tradition of what was called a vision quest by First Peoples.  Men, usually it was men, went into the wilderness, to fast and open themselves to communication from the Divine.

This is an interesting and slightly strange passage.  Daniel has fasted for three weeks (he doesn’t even bath!! Really!!).  It seems as though the being given Daniel the vision couldn’t get there for three weeks.

I will be honest that I never really understand these kinds of passages.  I think the writer is trying to convince their listeners by upping the intensity of how the vision can into being.

So, here is what I know.  If we are willing to surrender our lives to God; time, food, work (maybe not bathing); then we can be more open to God’s voice in our lives.

Tuesday,  a partial fast     Daniel 10:1-14

In the third year of King Cyrus of Persia a word was revealed to Daniel, who was named Belteshazzar. The word was true, and it concerned a great conflict. He understood the word, having received understanding in the vision.

At that time I, Daniel, had been mourning for three weeks. I had eaten no rich food, no meat or wine had entered my mouth, and I had not anointed myself at all, for the full three weeks. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river (that is, the Tigris), I looked up and saw a man clothed in linen, with a belt of gold from Uphaz around his waist. His body was like beryl, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and the sound of his words like the roar of a multitude. I, Daniel, alone saw the vision; the people who were with me did not see the vision, though a great trembling fell upon them, and they fled and hid themselves. So I was left alone to see this great vision. My strength left me, and my complexion grew deathly pale, and I retained no strength. Then I heard the sound of his words; and when I heard the sound of his words, I fell into a trance, face to the ground.

10 But then a hand touched me and roused me to my hands and knees. 11 He said to me, “Daniel, greatly beloved, pay attention to the words that I am going to speak to you. Stand on your feet, for I have now been sent to you.” So while he was speaking this word to me, I stood up trembling. 12 He said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia opposed me twenty-one days. So Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, and I left him there with the prince of the kingdom of Persia, 14 and have come to help you understand what is to happen to your people at the end of days. For there is a further vision for those days.”

Daniel was humbling himself for his people.  I think today I will pray for our leaders.  I think with the current complexity of our world and its demands it is difficult to be a leader of any kind.

I pray you find peace and joy in the midst of this day.

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