Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.” Daniel 10:12
What a powerful verse. I came across it this past fall, and it stopped me in my tracks. It’s amazing. Daniel set his heart to understand, and his words were heard… by God! I have an index card notebook, so I quickly jotted down this verse. I also wrote the stirring words in my journal. I was thoroughly moved and captivated by this new verse. But wait a minute… hadn’t I taken the Beth Moore study on the book of Daniel several years earlier? Yes, I sure did. So I must have read Daniel 10:12 then. And come to think of it…. it’s a pretty well-known verse. In fact, it’s likely that I ran across this verse several times in my life. But you know what? I didn’t remember it. When I read it this fall, it felt like the very first time.
Which brings me to what I want to write about today. This week, a dear friend brought up the spiritual markers of both our lives. She mentioned that she wanted to keep a spiritual marker journal, so that the BIG things God does won’t get lost in the mix. I actually had a similar thought about a month ago, but thought about making a timeline to show the BIG things. However, I’ve sat still. And now that it’s been brought to me again, I think God means for me to do it. Because what my friend said is true. A journal is a great tool, but depending on how much one journals, it would be hard to find the BIG things amidst hundreds/thousands/millions of words. And in my journal, it’s really hard to find something because I star and underline just about everything!!! For me to find those God moments, I would have to sit down and read every single word. So thanks, dear friend, you’ve given me a new direction… backward. Which is funny, because I’ve been looking back for a couple of years now.
This past fall, God pointed out just how easy it is to lose our spiritual markers. Oh, how quickly we forget! Fortunately, as I said yesterday (I think), God never forgets. It was this past September that He brought something to my mind. He wanted me to realize something HUGE. So He pointed me backward. He wanted me to face something specific from my past, but in a roundabout way I was brought right back to the Spring and Summer of 2010 (when everything really took off with God & me).
I’m sure you’ll soon notice I mention the Spring and Summer of 2010 quite a bit. It actually branches out into the fall. That’s because I believe a span of about six months was one spiritual marker in my life. That time period is when I had my God & me moment, it’s when I came to the realization that God is my homeland, and it’s also when I purposed to know Him. It’s when I purposed my heart to understand. And Daniel 10:12 assures me that my words were heard… by God!
Sure enough, when I look through my journal from September of 2010, there it is… Daniel 10:12. It spoke to me this past fall, and quite clearly, it spoke to me two years prior. How could I have forgotten? It was a major spiritual marker in my life. Perhaps it didn’t compute then. Maybe it’s only in looking back through our journals that we can find those defining moments. But the fact is, they’re there. We have to look for them. And when we find them, we need to remember them. Perhaps in a special book, as my friend suggested. Because how comforting would it be to pull that out when we’re feeling discouraged… and how amazing to see His very hand upon our lives.
Journals. I’m an advocate. I didn’t start one until the New Year of 2010. My first entries are sporadic at best, but over time, the pages get fuller and fuller. Later on, the writings include stars and underlines and circles. Yes, there’s a lot in there, and I’m eager to read them again. I’m excited about the task set before me. Although I read through them not that long ago, I must have missed something. Because God says to do it again. And so this time, I’ll look with fresh eyes. Through my own handwriting I’ll see proof of how the very hand of God has touched my life. And I can hardly wait to see what’s next. Because every day is a new day. With each new dawn, we’re given another chance. We can once again set our hearts to understand and come humbly before Him. And when we do, our words will be heard… by Him.