Remember to Humbly Praise
The true leader humbly admits what he or she does not know. They confess that they didn’t rise to prominence by their own brains, brawn, and determination. They confess that they are not in control of time or more specifically, of those special moments that elevated them to the top, and they realize that in an instant they could be stripped not only of their position but of their life.
We know that the blow hard constantly telling us that they are superior and able to make all the right decisions is a liar and a fool, but history shows that this self-possessed arrogant leader often sits in the power position. In the sixth century Nebuchadnezzar was telling this self-made story.
Before he even ascended to the throne he destroyed the Egyptian army, and then after his father died, he became king, quickly returned west, surrounded Jerusalem, and laughed at the Jewish God as he stole the Temple vessels and deposited them in his temple back in Babylon. Then suddenly in the second year of his reign a nightmare shook him.
His own dream specialists couldn’t reveal one detail of his dream, so he lost his temper and issued the order to execute them all. That’s when Daniel asked for some time, got his friends to pray with him, and that night in a vision the true God gave Daniel all the details he needed to bring to light the king’s secret. But before he called for an audience with the Babylonian king, he spent some time in the presence of the King.
“Daniel praised the God of heaven and began his prayer like this: ‘May the name of God be praised from eternity to eternity. Wisdom and power belong to him. He changes times and seasons. He sets up kings and strips away their reign. Wisdom he gives to the wise and knowledge to one who knows how to make sharp discerning decisions. He is the one who reveals deep unfathomable secrets and the hidden things. He makes known what lies in the darkness, and light dwells with him. To you, O God of my fathers, I give thanks and praise. You have given to me wisdom and power. You have now made known to me what we asked. You’ve made known to us the king’s dream.’” Daniel 2:19-23
There’s no selfish pride here. Only praise for the true divine King and good reasons for worship: God’s control of time from eternity to eternity and everything in between, acknowledgement that God is the source of true, wise decision making and that he controls when rulers get inaugurated and when they are stripped of their power. He alone knows the secret about what will happen in the future.
As we live in this story, the writer is challenging us to decide whether we will throw in our lot with the pride, power, success, and control Nebuchadnezzar portrays, or will we choose, like Daniel, to humbly give thanks and praise to God alone. And then as the events unfold we will get concrete evidence about which choice was the right one.
LORD, as I begin this week and turmoil swirls around like a threatening summer storm, I praise and thank you that you’re still sovereignly in control. O how steadying it is to rest like Daniel in your mercy and desire to care for us as your children. Help me to stay with Daniel humbly on my knees.
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!