Thursday, September 1, 2011


During our lifetime many of us face verbal attacks, gossiping, lies being told of us, and others out to ruin our reputations. All of these circumstances can leave us feeling despondent, hurt, angry, as if we have no control, and maybe feel like giving up on life, feel like life is overwhelming and out of control and maybe eventually bitter at people and/or life.

I recently met a young woman (now 31 years-old) who was diagnosed with epilepsy (later to find out it was a brain tumor) during high school. She had seizures at school and many of the students would make fun of her, mock her, point to her, and say many hurtful words. When speaking to the young lady about school, it seemed obvious that bitterness had set in about her previous experiences. Talking about them invoked vulgar words, a heightened volume in her voice, and angry feelings.

This young lady experienced a very hurtful situation in which she felt attacked from many sides. Throughout the past thirteen years, she held onto the devastation she felt in high school and appeared to continue to struggle with it.

Lions are predatory animals that are at the top of the food chain. They are armed with curved and elongated teeth; sharp claws; camouflaged coloring; incredible power, strength, and agility. One of the only flaws of the lion is their lack of stamina in chasing prey; therefore, in order to have foraging success they must hide and intently watch their prey. As their prey look away or down to eat, the lion creeps closer, for this is vital to its success in catching its prey. Once it is at a striking distance (between 65-100 feet), it pounces and ends its chase quickly.

There have been times in my life where I felt like Daniel. Because of Daniel’s faithfulness to the Lord and his honesty and integrity, he was second in command of the kingdom. The other government officials were very jealous of Daniel and set a trap for him. They knew that Daniel went into his room three times a day to pray, so they persuaded King Darius to enact a law forbidding worship of anyone but the king. The government officials had been waiting and watching Daniel praying. Then they told the king, "That man Daniel, one of the captives from Judah, is ignoring you and your law. He still prays to his God three times a day.” (Daniel 6:13). The king was then legally required to punish Daniel for continuing to pray to his God. So he reluctantly threw Daniel into the lion’s den. The next day the king found Daniel alive and unharmed for God had "sent his angel to shut the lions' mouth so that they would not hurt me...(Daniel 6:22).

It seemed because I was a Christian and very vocal about my faith, many of the people around me seemed to be watching me intently, like a lion does before pouncing on its prey, to see when I was going to make a mistake to give them an excuse to say that I was no different as a Christian because my choices were not perfect and I made the same mistakes they had or had seemingly made poorer choices than they. Have you ever felt like that? It's like a camouflaged lion waiting for you, in the tall grassland, to use his strength, power, sharp claws and teeth to get a hold of you and then pounce on you, so that they can gossip about you, point fingers at you, ruin your reputation, yell angry words or spread rumors about you. During those times it may seem that everything is beyond your control, your world is falling apart, and the foundation that you once stood on is falling from under you, but then you stand your ground, be faithful and consistent, love others regardless of their faults. Most of all remember that God is always in control and with His help we can gain a victory over our "roaring lions" as Daniel did when...the next day the king found Daniel alive and unharmed for God had "sent his angel to shut the lions' mouth so that they would not hurt me...(Daniel 6:22).

As the young woman in the story above, many of us have or will have experienced a similar situation in which it is difficult to allow God to heals us; however, we must choose to give the "roaring lions" of hurt, bitterness, and anger inside of us, to God. As David said in Psalm 22 when he felt like the enemy was surrounding him like a heard of bulls and "like roaring lions attacking their prey, they come at me roaring and tearing into their prey" (vs. 13), we must "then declare the wonder of your name to my brothers and sisters. I will praise you among all your people" (vs. 22). Because David cried out to God, God delivered David, and then he publicly praised the Lord for his deliverance. As Daniel trusted in God so must we, for our God is a God who will help us gain the victory!

Put your trust in the Lord today, for He can deliver you in any situation. Remind yourself that you must put your confidence in him for He is in control of all things.

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