“And I, Daniel, was overcome and lay sick for some days. Then I rose and went about the king’s business, but I was appalled by the vision and did not understand it.” Daniel 8:27
There have been a couple of times in my life when I received shocking and devastating news. Dealing with difficult circumstances and news; it’s part of the human experience. Whether it’s the call regarding the loss of a loved one, finding out you’re being laid off, or receiving a diagnosis that you weren’t prepared for and now facing an uncertain future. We face the difficulties and challenges that life loves to throw our way.
In Daniel 8, Daniel is going to receive a vision from God about challenges that the nation of Israel was going to face in its future and his commentary on how it made him feel is telling. Daniel says, “And I, Daniel, was overcome and lay sick for some days. Then I rose and went about the king’s business, but I was appalled by the vision and did not understand it.”
This vision made Daniel physically sick. He was appalled by the things that he had seen. It raises the question for us, how do we respond when we receive a vision that we don’t want? How do we respond when we receive news that makes us sick?
Daniel’s response is telling. The first thing he does? He lies down. Sometimes we do so much to avoid pain, we forget Jesus’ example as he would sit in his own pain and that of others when his dear friend Lazarus died (John 11). Sometimes the invitation is for us to stop, digest, process, and respond in faith. That’s what we see with Daniel, instead of being consumed by the trouble caused by the vision, eventually, he rises and goes about the king’s business. There are going to be many points in life where we don’t understand exactly what is happening in a given moment. The invitation for us is to put our trust in a kingdom that cannot be shaken. To put our trust in a God who understands the things that we go through and ultimately to respond in faith and go about the business of God’s kingdom. Is there a vision or news that’s troubling you? May the God of peace grant you rest, and may we all find the strength to rise and continue to pursue the kingdom that cannot and will not be shaken.
Pastor Seth Redden
High School Pastor