17 For how can the servant of this my lord talk with this my lord? for as for me, straightway there remained no strength in me, neither is there breath left in me. 18 Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, 19 And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.
Have you ever been thoroughly exhausted from what appears to be absolutely nothing? Or maybe you are exhausted because you cannot turn your brain off and you can’t keep up with them all. Or maybe it is from the emotional toll of fighting off the fear that accompanies the endless steam of “what ifs” we so often entertain in our minds.
I’ve dealt with all of them, sometimes all at once, or so it felt. Getting out of bed was too taxing an effort for me, especially since that meant dealing with other people and more of my own thoughts. Talking to friends or relatives only seemed like a waste of precious energy. I wouldn’t even want to work, because I felt it was all for nothing anyway.
But have you ever noticed that one Word from the Lord can make all the difference in the world? I don’t mean any old word. I mean a written word spoken directly to ME and my situation. This kind of word makes me feel like I have not been forgotten by Him. He knows how I feel and what is going on, and He has taken the time to respond to my desperate time of need. Somehow, this gives me strength to keep going, and the hope that tomorrow will be better.
Daniel said that no strength remained in him. But Jesus touched him personally, and Daniel felt strength seep into his body. Then, Jesus spoke to him, and more strength flowed into him. If just one touch and one statement can do so much for Daniel, why can’t it do the same for us?
What did Jesus say to Daniel that did so much for him? First, he told Daniel that Daniel was beloved. How would you feel if Jesus came and touched you and told you that you were beloved by Him? Secondly, Jesus told him not to fear. He knows how fear robs us of our strength by first overwhelming our brains and then paralyzing our bodies.
Thirdly, He spoke peace into Daniel’s life, which would be the absence of striving. If there is nothing to fear, there can be peace, because we are not spending all of our time and mental energy trying to figure a way out of our present situation, as if God knew and cared nothing about us. Then Jesus told him to be strong. Now this wasn’t a trite statement on Jesus’ part. If there was no way for Daniel (or us) to be strong in reality, Jesus wouldn’t say to be strong. He doesn’t ask us to do something we cannot do, or that He will not empower us to do. When He says to be strong, He will find a way to make it happen.
For us, the most likely way that Jesus will speak directly to us is when we are talking/praying with Him, or reading His word. It doesn’t have to take an hour of effort to reach God’s heart and hear something from Him, but it most likely will take SOME time, and means you have to take the initiative. Isn’t it worth dragging out your Bible, or reading that email scripture of the day, or taking some time to pray in order to be strengthened by Him? Make that one move toward Him, even when (or specifically when) you are exhausted and see if He doesn’t speak to you in some way.