Dealing with Bullies


Daniel's response to King Nebuchadnezzar provides a great opportunity for believers to learn how to deal with bullies.

There's a lot we can learn from Daniel's response to King Nebuchadnezzar as we consider how to deal with bullies in our lives. We see that Daniel sought God's help through praying with his godly friends. As we pray for God's help, we also need to pray specifically for the bully. Sometimes it seems that earnestly praying blessings upon someone who torments us is more difficult than confronting the bully. But the power of love will enable us to respond in a godly way. Daniel's prayers with his friends gave him boldness in going before the bullying king.

As you seek boldness, examine your motives before you speak or act. Pure motives and a clear conscience will give you strength. Proverbs tells us that, "the righteous are as bold as a lion" (v. 28:1). When we pray for boldness, our motives must be more about others and less about ourselves. Humility will keep our motives pure: "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves" (Philippians 2:3). Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

In his humility and right motives, the next thing Daniel did was to do something positive for the bully. Through God's insight, Daniel was able to share the detailed interpretation of the dream with Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel helped the very man who threatened his life. Romans 12:14 tells us to "Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse."

Daniel's plan produced dramatic results. The king was so grateful and impressed that he "fell prostrate before Daniel and paid him honor," and Daniel and his friends were given great leadership within Babylon (see Daniel 2:26-49).

Your situation may not end as remarkably, but if you seek to resolve the problem through prayer and by acting in love, then God will stand with you in your fight.

Prayer: God, help me to pray for my enemies and to respond to them in love. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" (Matthew 5:44).


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