Weather permitting, I have my devotions on my front porch.
I’ve intentionally outfitted it with comfortable outdoor furniture, pillows, plants, candles, and a soft wind chime, so that it will be an inviting retreat for private devotions or family time.
One morning last week, as I lay on the wicker couch there listening to the breeze, chimes, and birdsong, I thought how lovely it was that I could read my Bible and pray aloud in absolute comfort and ease. I never need worry about hiding my faith, as Christian brothers and sisters in many countries do. It’s unfathomable to think that Christianity is illegal in some Muslim countries, and believers there can be jailed or even killed.
On Sunday, a visiting evangelist taught our junior church kids from the book of Daniel, focusing on the familiar tale of Daniel in the lions’ den.
As the story goes, King Darius was tricked into signing a law decreeing that for thirty days, he alone could receive prayers and petitions. No other God or gods were to be worshiped.
In his vanity, the king did not consider the habits of his trusted friend and adviser, Daniel, whose routine of praying three times daily was well known.
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime. – Daniel 6:10
Consider the wording of the verse: “Now when Daniel knew…” As soon as Daniel knew about the law, without hesitation, he prayed as he always had: three times each day, windows open for all the world to see.
He didn’t stop praying, or even pray in secret. He kept his regular appointment with God in his usual way.
We ought to obey God rather than men. – Acts 5:29b
I wonder, were Christianity ever to be outlawed in America, would I hide my faith?
Would I deny it?
I’ve prayed that I and my children will never need to face that issue. But considering that question reminds me to pray for those who are forced to deal with it every day.
My husband receives a publication called “Voice of the Martyrs,” which shares stories and prayer requests of persecuted Christians around the world. You can visit their web site here.
Where do you retreat to have your devotions? Have you considered the plight of persecuted believers around the world?