Israel, Daniel, and Our Hope in Crushing Times

On the heels of my father’s death, we learned my father-in-law had lung cancer. Shortly after that we received two more rounds of bad news. I wrote in my journal, “Lord, I feel like a squished grape.”

Have you ever been flattened by bad news? God gave Daniel a vision of the end times that flattened him for three weeks. But God didn’t leave him there. He sent an angel to strengthen him and interpret the vision.

Then the one who looked like a man touched me again, and I felt my strength returning. ‘Don’t be afraid,’ he said, ‘for you are very precious to God. Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!’” (Daniel 10:18-19 NLT).

Daniel was able to witness the fulfillment of some of his prophecies. Other prophecies were fulfilled after his death through such conquerors as Alexander the Great. But the terrible vision that flattened Daniel—is yet to come.

Many have questioned the authenticity of the book of Daniel because of how accurately and clearly it foretold future details. However, after the discovery of the ancient Qumran documents (The Dead Sea Scrolls), the book’s genuineness can no longer be reasonably disputed. The book of Revelation amplifies Daniel’s terrible vision of the last days.

Many prophecy scholars are connecting current events to the last days. The world embracing one currency, one economy, and one ruler promising peace no longer seems remote. The October 7th attack on Israel uncovered shocking world-wide antisemitism. Who would have ever pictured the unleashing of such vile hate against this small group of people? God did.

The Hope Related to Birth Pangs

Jesus said that wars, rumors of wars, and earthquakes are the beginning of birth pangs (Mark 13:7-8). In the birth process, contractions start out weak and build in duration and intensity.

I vividly remember the transition phase of my children’s births and my prayers for relief. I believe the transition phase corresponds to the seven-year tribulation. As labor pains produce new life, the tribulation will end in the new era of Christ’s reign.

Regardless of where we are on the prophetic calendar, the angel’s words pertain to us. We must be strong—in love, faith, courage, character, and readiness to meet our Lord.

We may not know the day or the hour Jesus will return, but after listing end time signs (that some believe point to Israel’s establishment as a nation in 1948), Jesus said, “In the same way, when you see all these things, you can know his return is very near, right at the door” (Matthew 24:33 NLT).

For those whose names are written in the book of life, we can look up with hope, for our redemption is drawing near. But we must also be strong, for we are living in times of wide-spread deception and diluted faith.

The day bad news flattened me, the Lord reminded me that He was with me and for me. Despite whatever bad news or bad times we face, like Daniel, we can draw hope and strength from the Lord’s presence and His sure words.

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away” (Mark 13:31 NIV).

Discover hope and resilience in the face of crushing news as we explore Daniel's profound vision and its relevance to our challenging times. #strength, #hope Share on X

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  1. Michele Morin

    Daniel’s story is a true light in a dark time—demonstrating to us that we need not possess political power or be in the majority to wield influence!

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      He’s one of my favorites, Michele!

  2. Diane A

    Such a good word Debbie. Thank you.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Thank you, Diane!

  3. Ann Musico

    These are crazy times but we know Who is still on the throne!!!

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Ann, what a comfort to know He knew this would happen so long ago!

  4. Linda Stoll

    Debbie, sometimes this can be the best prayer – ‘“Lord, I feel like a squished grape.” Thank You, Lord, that we can be completely honest with You, knowing that You already know our troubled souls

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Linda, I’m so glad we can be honest with God and not have to explain!

  5. Annie Yorty

    Our hope is in God alone, and He’s more than enough. Thank you, Debbie for this timely reminder.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Amen! Thank you, Annie.

  6. Barbara Harper

    Feeling like a squished grape is such a vivid way to express how bad news steamrolls us. I’m thankful for God’s strengthening hand and words when that happens. I agree about the signs of the times.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Barbara, I’m also thankful for how He meets us where we are and already knows the future. Thanks for reading.

  7. J.D. Wininger

    Such an encouraging post Ms. Debbie. Not surprised by that at all, but grateful for your encouraging words to us. These are challenging, peace-draining times my friend, but as you point out, we need to shift our focus from here to there. And God promises that if we are His. If we are grafted into His family through our true relationship with Christ in salvation, then our “There” is guaranteed, and it will be more than we can even imagine. Let’s keep playing chess my friend, and put our focus on the end game, not the next move. God’s blessings ma’am.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      J.D., I like your analogy and am so thankful God has let us in on the end game!

  8. Katy Kauffman

    I’m so grateful nothing surprises God and He knows how to work good out of hard, hard things.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Me too, Katy! Knowing Jesus is certainly an anchor in hard times.

  9. Joanne Viola

    These are challenging days in which we are living. “But we must also be strong, for we are living in times of wide-spread deception and diluted faith.” We need to be strong and discerning so that we can keep ourselves and others from deception and diluted faith. We truly need to be students of the Word. Your posts always bring encouragement and hope. Blessings to you, Debbie.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Joanne, in this world of deception we need the Word to wash and renew us daily. Thanks so much for your encouragement and thoughts.

  10. Barbara Latta

    I am thankful that in the midst of all the bad news, God gives us hope. His Word is ever sure and will uphold us the way He did for Daniel.

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      How thankful I am that we have access to the whole counsel of God! Thank you, Barbara.

  11. Nancy E. Head

    Some things are so difficult, but God reminds us that He walks with us through good times and bad. Thanks for reminding us as well, Debbie. God bless!

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Thank you, Nancy!

  12. Paula Short

    So wonderfully spoken Debbie.
    Visiting today from Joanne’s

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Thank you, Paula!

  13. Katherine Pasour

    I’m thankful we know the One in charge. These are scary times, but it is our Father who has the Master plan. Praying!

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      Yes, such a comfort to know the One who knows and who loves us. Thanks, Katherine.

  14. Donna Reidland

    Debbie, while we don’t know the exact time when Jesus will come for His people, it does seem more and more possible that the time could be near. All the more reason to pray for those we know who may not believe. But what an encouragement to know He cares and looks out for those of us who know Him even when we feel like a squished grape. 🙂

    • Debbie W. Wilson

      I agree, Donna! Thank you.

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