"While I was still speaking in prayer, then the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision previously, came to me in my extreme weariness about the time of the evening offering. 22He gave me instruction and talked with me and said, “O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you insight with understanding. 23“At the beginning of your supplications the command was issued, and I have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed;" (Daniel 9:21-23)
It would be good enough to get an answer to prayer while you are still praying but to hear the words, "...for you are highly esteemed..." would certainly be exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we could ask or think.
What kind of a man gets that kind of an answer to prayer? First of all, he must understand that he became a man of God by the grace of God. So we do well to thank God for Daniel. The man God made Daniel into was a man who would not defile himself.
"But Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself with the king’s choice food or with the wine which he drank; so he sought permission from the commander of the officials that he might not defile himself." (Daniel 1:8)
He was a man willing to go out on a limb to avoid defilement. He made a deal with the commander, give plain food, and see if God doesn't keep me well. Not only did He keep him well, but God also made Daniel healthier than the rest. Couldn't we all use that kind of faith right now?
WE could say much about Daniel but for the time we will constrain ourselves to his humility. In chapter nine where we read of his receiving the most specific prophecy in all scripture, he was also the most humble.
"So I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes. I prayed to the LORD my God and confessed and said, “Alas, O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments, we have sinned, committed iniquity, acted wickedly and rebelled, even turning aside from Your commandments and ordinances. “Moreover, we have not listened to Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings, our princes, our fathers and all the people of the land." (Daniel 9:3-6)
Daniel speaks of keeping God's commandments and sinning side by side. He was able to keep things straight and unconfused in his head and heart. In chapter ten we see his humility pushed to high gear.
"In those days, I, Daniel, had been mourning for three entire weeks. I did not eat any tasty food, nor did meat or wine enter my mouth, nor did I use any ointment at all until the entire three weeks were completed." (Daniel 10:2, 3)
It is in chapter ten that Daniel, a humble, devout man, who fasted for three weeks was given an angelic vision that placed him in extreme fear. It was at that time he learned again he was highly esteemed and his prayer took long because of spiritual warfare. A war that took place between an angel and a demon.
I was once asked, why do you ask men to come out at 3 AM to pray? My reply was simple, to do something exceptional is never without a cost.