Prayer with Thanksgiving

“Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.”

Daniel 6:10

     The biblical story of Daniel is a familiar one to many of us.  Captured from Israel as a young man and brought to Babylon far from his family, friends, and worship of the one true God, Daniel determined to stand for God in spite of the circumstances.  Through his life, he was threatened with death several times before the encounter recorded in our text above.

The Babylonian rulers were frustrated that Daniel, a foreigner, was promoted above them into a high political position.  They figured the only way they could remove him was to use his worship of his God against him.  They goaded the king into writing a new law banning the worship of anyone other than the king for 30 days.

Daniel knew of this law, but it did not change anything in his worship.  He continued to pray three times a day in spite of the new law.  Even though he faced the death sentence for this dedication, God spared him from the mouths of a den of hungry lions.

We desire all of our families would have this kind of dedication to the worship of our God.  It is interesting, however, that Daniel took time to give thanks to God even when his life was in grave danger.

As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving Day with our family and friends, we should each have the same dedication to prayer and thanksgiving as Daniel had.  We are not called simply to “Give Thanks” or “Be Grateful” as some tell us.  Instead, we should be giving thanks to God and praise Him for all of His great blessings.

In Philippians 4:6, the Apostle Paul asks Christians to let their requests be given to God “by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving.”  May we all be known as thankful people to our great God!