How have you fallen into the tempting trap of materialism? How can you be more intentional about humbly serving the vulnerable of the world?
- Daily Devotional, May 12, 2011 "Strange Love"5/12/2011 - For many years I served as an itinerant Bible teacher and traveled to different cities to teach God’s Word. Usually, I would stay in a local church family’s home during my visit—believers in Jesus whom I met for the very first time. Showering me with simple creature comforts, these hospitable people gave me “a home away from home.” I often marveled that my hosts would risk inviting me, a complete stranger, into their lives.
- Daily Devotional, May 11, 2011 "Gaining Strength"5/10/2011 - After 20 years in youth ministry, my husband has weathered his fair share of injuries on the job. Most recently, he was involved in a competitive outdoor game when he twisted his foot. Playing through the pain, he conceded to his injury only after winning the contest. He limped to a nearby place to sit down and carefully remove his sock, only to see his ankle quickly swelling past the size of an orange.
- Daily Devotional, May 10, 2011 "A Symbol of Forgiveness - Sheila Walsh"5/9/2011 - On a Sunday morning in 2009, Pastor Fred Winters was brutally gunned down as he delivered a sermon in front of his church congregation. The story made national headlines not only for the story itself, but also for his wife Cindy's forgiveness of the man who pulled the trigger.
- Daily Devotional, May 9, 2011 "Bold, Faithful Friends"5/8/2011 - Jesus had returned to His base in Capernaum after a preaching trip. When the locals heard that He was back, they ran to where He was staying (probably Peter’s house) and swarmed around it. So many people crowded into the house that there was no way a paralyzed man, brought to the door by his concerned friends, could get in. But his friends would not be hindered! They hatched a dangerous, unconventional plan.
- Daily Devotional, May 6, 2011 "Divine Detours"5/5/2011 - Last summer, my boys and I took some memorable bike rides. One path that runs alongside a local river became the boys’ favorite. There are numerous spots to stop, toss their helmets aside, and explore along the riverbank. Their most celebrated discovery was a pool of tadpoles. In contrast to my boys, I don’t like to stop while riding, and I don’t search for tadpoles.
- Daily Devotional, May 5, 2011 "Pillar of Truth"5/4/2011 - My friend doesn’t like the idea of attending church. She says, “People leave their brains at the church doors.” A contemporary poet describes the church this way: “Outwardly splendid as of old; inwardly sparkless, void and cold. Her force and fire all spent and gone, like the dead moon she still shines on.”
- Daily Devotional, May 4, 2011 "Amplified"5/3/2011 - Despite the recent economic meltdown, most people would agree that free markets have improved the lives of billions of people. Many people today are living longer and wealthier than anyone ever has, in large part because free markets incentivize us to create products that other people want to buy. Entrepreneurs who knew that they would profit from their efforts invented vaccines, computers, microwaves, and indoor plumbing.
- Daily Devotional, May 3, 2011 "A Symbol of Forgiveness - Promises, Promises"5/2/2011 - Promises, Promises: When you think of promises, you don’t want to think of what’s broken, of brokenness. It’s human nature to want a sure thing and for someone to back up the certainties, guaranteed, no questions asked. But it’s just like God to think of the unthinkable, to show us that the impossible is possible, that there is one kind of brokenness that holds everything together and in which promises are kept.
- Daily Devotional, May 2, 2011 "Jonathan's Example"5/1/2011 - When Matt Damon hit it big in Hollywood, he bought two Jeep Grand Cherokees—one for him, and one for his best buddy, Ben Affleck. In an interview with People magazine, he said, “That was our dream car. We flipped a coin on the color. We both wanted hunter green and I won; he got black.” I had to smile when I read that story. Friends dream together. Friends celebrate together. Friends stick together.
- Daily Devotional, April 29, 2011 "Friend of Sinners"4/28/2011 - Jesus’ teachings can seem to be paradoxical. Exhibit A: He requires a standard of living that’s even more rigorous than the Old Testament. Jewish law condemned adultery (Ex. 20:14); Jesus said that even looking at someone lustfully was wrong (Matt. 5:27- 28). Jewish law allowed for divorce (Deut. 24:1); Jesus condemned it except for marital infidelity (Matt. 5:32).
- Daily Devotional - April 28, 2011 "Searching"4/27/2011 - Recently, archaeologist Eilat Mazar found fortifications that were built in Jerusalem some 3,000 years ago. She believes that they were constructed by Solomon, as described in the Old Testament. Her unearthed evidence strongly rebuts what secular scholars believe: “that David’s [and Solomon’s] monarchy was largely mythical and that there was no strong government to speak of in that era.” Eilat’s passionate digging and searching made for one amazing find!
- Daily Devotional, April 27, 2011 "Wanted"4/26/2011 - Two weeks ago, our friends traveled to Ethiopia to meet and bring home their newly adopted daughter. For a couple of years, our friends have prayed for little Lilia, saved thousands of dollars to pay the adoption expenses, and then waited months and months until they could welcome her into their life. But before they knew who would be their daughter and before they knew her name or face, they were already waiting for her. They wanted her.
- Daily Devotional, April 26, 2011 "Orderly Arrangement"4/25/2011 - A group of children were asked, “How can a wife submit to her husband?” An 8-year-old named Mary said, “My mom could mow the yard, feed the dogs, work in the garden, and help us with our homework instead of making my dad do it. She could also make food for special occasions, go grocery shopping, take us to doctors’ appointments, pick out our clothes every morning, and fix our breakfast, lunch, and supper.”
- Daily Devotional, April 25, 2011 "too big to fail"4/25/2011 -
- Daily Devotional, April 22, 2011 Good Friday4/21/2011 - In this devo, I will write about a subject of which I must say—with great confidence—is an area of expertise. Yes, I will be boasting here. For I’ve been well-trained and have lots of experience in it. My subject? Failure. No one wants to experience it, but you and I have both come to know it up close and personal. The apostle Peter knew what it felt like to fail Jesus
- Daily Devotional, April 21, 2011 "Adrenaline For The Soul"4/20/2011 - Using contemporary language, while attempting to capture the depth and vitality of the original words that moved and inspired early believers in Jesus, Eugene Peterson translated Hebrews 12:2-3 this way: Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how He did it. Because He never lost sight of where He was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—He could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever.
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