Sought to understand it

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Reading: Daniel 8:1-27; Proverbs 24:3-4

READ (verse chosen for meditation)
Daniel 8:15-16
15 When I, Daniel, had seen the vision, I sought to understand it. And behold, there stood before me one having the appearance of a man. 16 And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of the Ulai, and it called, “Gabriel, make this man understand the vision.”

When Daniel saw the vision (as described in Daniel 8:1-14), the very first thing he did was that he sought to understand it. He did not make any flippant guesses about what the vision could be, but he sought to understand it. He did not go and tell it to his neighbours, but he sought to understand it. He did not post it on social media so that everyone could “like” it, but he sought to understand it. Daniel sought to understand the vision because he knew that it was from the Lord. Daniel knew that the vision needs to be explained by God Himself. For Daniel’s consistent faithfulness, God answered Daniel’s seeking. God sent His very own archangel Gabriel to explain the vision to Daniel. In the end, the vision affected Daniel so much that he fell ill for several days (Daniel 8:27).

When I am given a vision from God, do I seek Him first for understanding? Or do I get so excited that I begin to invent theories on what the vision could be? Or would I get so prideful that I post it on social media for friends to “like” it and secretly hoping that people will conclude that I am “highly favoured” by the Lord? Along the same line, when I am given the privilege to witness a miracle from the Lord, do I praise Him for who He is and be encouraged? Or do I think that I am better than everybody else?

I believe I was given a vision by the Lord in the year 2007, during a time of prayer with several men in ministry. In that vision, I saw an eagle flying towards me. The vision was so clear and detailed that I know it is from the Lord. Initially, I did not know what to do. Secretly, I felt encouraged that God would put such a vision to me; for I assumed that it was something good. Later, by the grace of God, I came to realise that I was just being prideful. I should, like Daniel, sought to understand it first. Who knows? Maybe it was a warning for me to turn from my sins! Through some years of prayer, seeking and affirmation. I came to realise that the vision was an encouragement from the Lord as I prepared to go into full time church work.

I believe God do give visions or allow us to witness or experience miracles. Question is: Are we allowing these experiences to draw us closer to God? Are we seeking to understand God even more? Or do these only serve to make us prideful? May we be like Daniel, who sought to honour God in everything.

Lord my God, help me to honour you like Daniel; even in the wonderful visions and miracles you have allow me to see and witness. Amen.

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