Peace Beyond All Understanding

Daniel 6:21-23 NIV

Daniel answered, "O king, live forever! My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king."

The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.

Imagine yourself in Daniel's shoes. You've defied the law. You've stood up for your belief. You've refused to stop praying to your God. You've refused to pray to a man. You've refused to hide your faith. Now you're faced with a den of hungry lions. Look into those lions' eyes. Take a gander at their fangs and claws. They are huge! And they are mean! And you are what has been catered for their lunch! Now, how peaceful do you feel? Most of us wouldn't have to worry about the lions killing us - we'd die of a heart attack the minute we were thrown into the den!

But Daniel had peace about the whole situation. He was not afraid. He knew he'd done nothing to offend God. He knew he'd done nothing - in reality - to offend Darius. Above all, he knew that God was capable of saving him if He chose to do so. If not, Daniel also knew where he was going if it was time for his life to end. Even more than all this, Daniel was so close to God that he could receive the wonderful peace that God will give all of us - if we'll just allow it.

Several years ago, I was faced with the possibility of a brain tumor. When the doctor first dropped that bomb on me, I was terrified. I was so shaken by the doctor's announcement I couldn't talk, and could barely drive. After I told my family, they were all shaken, too, so much so that many tears were being shed as we waited for time to leave to have the CT scan done that same evening. The fact that the doctor was in such a hurry to get the CT scan made the situation all the scarier. We stopped to pray, and during that prayer, a peace poured over me that was so strong and so serene that I instantly stopped shaking, both physically and emotionally. It was almost as though a stream of calming water was pouring over me, inside and out. When we lifted our heads at the end of the prayer, I smiled at my family and said, "I'm all right." They didn't understand, thinking I'd just calmed down and would be able to handle whatever came. But I said, "No, I mean, I'm all right. There is no tumor." Skeptical questions flew back at me as to how I knew, since I hadn't had the tests yet. All I could say was, "I know. There is no tumor." "But what if there is?" the question flew at me from several directions. Overwhelmed with God's peace, I said, "Even if there is - and I know there's not - I'm all right." God had filled me with the assurance that there was no tumor... And later that evening, we learned from the CT technician that there wasn't.

The peace that I experienced was impossible by human terms. But it's the same impossible peace Daniel had when thrown into the lion's den. And it's the same impossible peace we can all have if we allow God to give it to us. Do you need impossible peace? Allow God to give it to you now.

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV)

Used with Permission