Why Praying and Waiting is Exhausting

Why Praying and Waiting is Exhausting

Daniel 10:10-14 – And behold, a hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. And he said to me, “O Daniel, man greatly loved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for now I have been sent to you.” And when he had spoken this word to me, I stood up trembling. Then he said to me, “Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, and came to make you understand what is to happen to your people in the latter days. For the vision is for days yet to come.”

When there is nothing you can do, there is always one thing you can do – pray!

In light of a recent global pandemic that has caused panic, more people are praying, and the people who are praying are praying more than ever. However, as Christians, it can be confusing or even discouraging that, though we persist in prayer, it seems like God is not answering.

In Daniel, we learn something quite amazing. Some delay is demonic. For three weeks Daniel had been praying and fasting but there was no indication that God was hearing or answering. Then, a divine being (possibly the angel Gabriel who appeared to Daniel on previous occasions) showed up to touch, comfort, and inform Daniel. Amazingly, Daniel’s prayers were heard the moment he said them, a divine being was sent to answer the prayer, but was delayed for three weeks by demonic forces. The apostle Paul explains the same experience in 1 Thessalonians 2:18: “we wanted to come to you…again and again—but Satan hindered us.”

Behind the physical world we continually see is a spiritual world that we rarely see. In that unseen realm, there is a war that has been waged since Satan and demons declared war on God and angels in heaven. Apparently, this war is much like wars in our world as there are higher ranking officers commanding troops referred to as a “prince”, “chief prince”, and “kings”. Like human military, demonic forces also have strategic geographical outposts as Daniel learned. Passing from one place to another in the unseen realm is apparently as hard for an angel to do as it is for a soldier to march across enemy territory during wartime.

Thankfully, Michael who is an “archangel” warrior led the war to get the message from God to Daniel. The New Testament tells us about this great battle-tested warrior in the unseen realm:

  • Jude 1:9 – “But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil…he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you.’”
  • Rev. 12:7 – …”war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon.”

The practical application is simple. Like Daniel, when it feels like you are living in a war zone, keep praying and trusting that God is hearing and responding, but that the battle waging behind the scenes may be far more intense and complicated than you could have imagined.

What do you need to be persevering in prayer for?

In addition to this introduction to and overview of Daniel, you can find the corresponding sermons, daily devotions, men’s ministry resources, and hundreds of additional sermons and Bible teaching resources for free at markdriscoll.org or on the Mark Driscoll Ministries app.

To visit the Trinity Church in Scottsdale, Arizona, you can plan your visit at thetrinitychurch.com.

Mark Driscoll
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