Day 10: The Silence of the Lions
"My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me." (Daniel 6:22)
The impatient lions had not eaten in days and were starving. Suddenly, a scent in the air and a noise outside the den captures their attention. Looking up, the lions see their next meal dangling over the edge. Daniel.
There is a loud thud and groan as Daniel hits the floor of the cave, and the little shaft of light slowly disappears as the guards roll a stone over the entrance to seal his tomb. The lions immediately move in for the kill. They circle. They size up their prey. They joust over who goes first. They growl and roar, and paw the dirt. And then something marvelous happens. Just before the lions were about to pounce, God sends an angel down into the cave and shuts the lions' mouths!
Notice that the angel did not grab Daniel and pull him out of the cave. No, the angel left Daniel in the cave with the lions where he stayed all night. The lions found themselves muzzled. They circled. They stalked. Their stomachs growled, but they could not. They were powerless to do anything against Daniel.
You see, the trial you are facing now is determined by God to last a certain amount of time, and He has drawn a line in the sand marking how far the enemy may come against you and what he can do to you. God is allowing that trial in your life, whatever it may be, to perform a wonderful work in you that will bring you forth as pure gold. He wants to do something marvelous in your heart, to cause you to grow in faith, and to perfect you.
Peter instructed us in his first epistle to cast all of our care upon Jesus, for He cares for us. Be sober. Be vigilant. Why? Peter says, "Because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist stedfast in the faith." (1 Peter 5:8). After you have suffered a while, Peter says, the God of all grace will make you perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you (1 Peter 5:10).
God did not say He would pull us out of the fire. But He did promise that we would not be burned while we walked through the fire. God did not promise that He would pull us out of the depths. But He did promise that He would be with us when we pass through the waters (Isaiah 43:2).
And like Paul, God may not remove our problems from us immediately, though we may cry out and pray over and over (2 Corinthians 12:8-9). But He did promise that His grace would be sufficient. We may still have to spend the night in a dark cave watching the lions circle us, be we can rejoice in knowing that God has shut their mouths! They cannot harm us!