Step One in Crisis: Listen and Let God Speak First

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You will never pray effectively until you study the Scriptures and listen to the Lord. The more you know the Bible, the more effective your prayers will be.

“It was the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede, the son of Ahasuerus, who became king of the Babylonians. During the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, learned from reading the word of the Lord, as revealed to Jeremiah the prophet, that Jerusalem must lie desolate for seventy years” (Daniel 9:1-2 NLT). 

We will all face a time of crisis in life. In fact, we’ll likely endure many. You’ll have deaths in your family, job losses, and relational problems that will, at times, become crushing blows. 

Prayer will be key.

We can learn much from Daniel and his prayer life. As an old man when the time came closer for the Israelites to return to their homeland, Daniel knew his people were not ready — the Israelites still did not have a right relationship with God. This grieved Daniel, so he prayed.

His prayer in Daniel 9 provides six important pieces about how to pray in a way that God answers during a crisis. We’ll look at each these six parts during the next few devotionals. 

First, you let God speak to you before you speak to him.

You need to hear the voice of God. He will always make the first move in your life. He never expects you to do something he doesn’t do first. The Bible says we love God because he first loved us. We serve him because he first served us. 

God initiates; we respond. 

So how do you listen to God? You read the Bible. We talk to God because he first talked with us through his Word.

Daniel did this. The Bible says, “It was the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede, the son of Ahasuerus, who became king of the Babylonians. During the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, learned from reading the word of the Lord, as revealed to Jeremiah the prophet, that Jerusalem must lie desolate for seventy years” (Daniel 9:1-2 NLT).

You will never pray effectively until you study the Scriptures and listen to the Lord. The more you know the Bible, the more effective your prayers will be.

Talk It Over 

  • God will always make the first move in your life. When have you seen God take the initiative in your life? 
  • What makes it difficult for you to consistently listen to the Lord as you study his Word?
  • The time to learn how to pray during a crisis is before the crisis begins. Why do you think that is important?

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This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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