Jesus has a wonderful way of restoring us when we fail Him! He does not humiliate us. He does not criticize us. He does not ask us to make a resolution to try harder. Rather, He takes us aside and asks us to reaffirm our love for Him.
Jesus does not need your resolutions, your recommitments, or your promises to try harder this year. If your resolve to obey God last year did not help you to be faithful, it will not make you successful this year. Jesus asks for your love. If you truly love Him, your service for Him in the new year will be of the quality that He desires.
– January 1, Experiencing God Daily Devotionals
Point Of No Return
“… we can never go back in time… We can look back and remember, but we cannot retrace a single moment of the year that is past.” – Ray Stedman
… we need not remain chained to our old memories because we can move ahead focused on God. Just as the Lord watched over the land and His people, so His eyes will be upon us.
God’s faithful care will extend to every day of the new year. We can count on that promise. – David McCasland.
God holds the future in His hands
With grace sufficient day by day;
Through good or ill He gently leads,
If we but let Him have His way. – Rohrs
The “what” of our future is determined by the “Who” of eternity.
– December 31, Vol. 16
Leadership has its privileges, but more important – it comes with huge responsibilities.
When God removes His hand of blessing because a leader engages in ungodly activity, everyone suffers. That’s why it’s so important for every Christian in a leadership position to strive daily to keep his heart attuned to God and His Word.
Stay close to God. Give Him the glory and honor due His name. Obey His Word. Worship Him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). Don’t risk losing the Lord’s blessing by causing trouble at the top. – Dave Branon
They truly lead who lead by love
And humbly serve the Lord;
Their lives will bear the Spirit’s fruit
And magnify His Word. – D. De Haan
Follow the leader who follows Christ.
November 25, Vol. 18
The caption in USA Today read, “Physicists find the missing piece in a universal puzzle.” The “tau neutrino,” an incredibly tiny particle, was the last theorized member of the family of particles that make up the universe. It has now been proven to exist.
Philip Schewe of the American Institute of Physics said, “It’s like finding the Z in the alphabet of fundamental particles … [This study] doesn’t save lives or fill stomachs, but it does investigate the most fundamental structures … out of which everything, including ourselves, is made.”
Imagine finding the smallest known piece of the universe! It’s even more amazing to know the Designer of the universe – the Creator of those tiny bits of matter – and the reason they hold together. In Colossian 1:17 we read the Jesus “is before all things, and in Him all things consist.” One Bible scholar defines the word consist as the “principle of cohesion,” adding that Jesus make the universe “a cosmos instead of a chaos.”
Jesus Christ is more vital to our existence than the “tau neutrino.” He feeds us spiritually, as well as physically. He saves us from our sins, as well as protects us from evil. He brings order to our inner chaos. May we ever worship the One who holds everything together. – Dennis De Haan
My times are in His hand,
A hand so safe and strong,
A hand which holds the sea
And guides the stars along. – Anon
When your world seems to be falling apart, look to Jesus who holds everything together.
November 13, Vol. 18
“The world is full of “experts.” There are people everywhere who want to convince you of the wisdom of their opinion. Yet God says that it is not the one who declares his viewpoint the most loudly or vociferously who is the wisest, but the one who is vindicated over time.
Wisdom is not proven by argument or debate. Wisdom is proven over time. Some people adamantly proclaim that their opinion is best. Regardless of how convincingly these people defend their viewpoint, time is the best judge of their wisdom. The result of a practice proves its validity, not how loudly is it promoted.
When you seek to obey what God has told you, you will sometimes meet resistance and criticism from others who disagree with the wisdom of your actions. Your immediate response may be the urge to vindicate yourself. However, if you wait patiently, time will reveal the wisdom of your actions better than you could through argument.
Through the ages, the wisdom found in God’s Word has been tested and proven true. It is critical that you measure everything you hear against the Scriptures. Trends in psychology and philosophy come and go, but God’s Word is timeless. Whenever you share an opinion in counseling someone else, make sure that it comes from the Scripture and not merely from your best thinking. As long as you base your life choices on the Word of God, time will be your defender and will validate the wisdom of your choices. If, over time, you clearly see you are wrong, ask God’s forgiveness and seek a fresh word from God through the Scripture. Then obey that word and watch to see God confirm His wisdom in your life.”
– November 5, Experiencing God Daily Devotionals
“Human nature tells us to use the cover of anonymity to avoid taking the blame for the bad things we do. God, however, tells us something else. He wants us to use anonymity to avoid taking credit for the good that we do.
When we volunteer our service or make donations to churches and organizations that do good work in the name of Jesus, we receive something much better than honor from our peers. We receive rewards from God, and God receives glory from others.” – Julie Ackerman Link, November 1, Vol. 16, Our Daily Bread
” One hindrance to hearing a word from God may be our own wisdom. Wisdom, like success, can delude us to think we should take the role of teacher rather than student. Our knowledge lulls us into thinking we have sufficient wisdom to meet any challenge. Believing we are wise tempts us to evaluate the shortcomings of others, yet be unaware of how much growth is still required in ourselves.
When religious leaders experience spiritual failure, their downfall is often met with surprise. It shouldn’t be. Religious people with the most knowledge are sometimes the ones least responsive to God’s Word. Knowledge can easily lead to pride, and pride impedes us from seeking God.
How do you know if you’re a “Pharisee”? When you do not have a teachable spirit. When you become defensive if a fellow Christian shares a concern about your spiritual condition. When you do not seek to hear from God, believing you already know what He thinks. When you feel that you are capable of helping others in their spiritual lives, but no one can teach you anything. Don’t allow the limited knowledge you now have to blind you to the great truths God still wants to reveal to you.”
– October 22, Experiencing God Daily Devotionals
The fundamental premise of Christianity is that God knows what is best better than we do. When we are experiencing God’s blessing, it is easy to believe that God knows what is best. But when God allows sickness and sorrow in our lives, we may be tempted to question His wisdom.
God knows what is best. Whether your circumstances are easy or difficult, you can completely trust His guidance.
– October 8, Experiencing God Daily Devotionals
“It seems that our struggles revolve around wanting something we don’t have and having something we don’t want. Our deepest longings and our greatest challenges are deeply rooted in trying to see the hand of God in these two facts of life.
… the value of a trusting heart that accepts the mysterious ways of God and the presence of His mighty hand, no matter how perplexing our circumstances may be.” – David McCasland
For the Christian, testing cannot be separated from trusting.
– December 14, Our Daily Bread, Vol. 14
“Does God determine our value by how busy we are? Does He calculate our worth by how much we accomplish? Does He reward us for living on the edge of exhaustion and not taking care of ourselves?
Accomplishing a lot for God my make us feel important, but what makes us important to God is what we allow Him to accomplish in us – conforming us into the image of His Son(Romans 8:28-30). – Julie Ackerman Links
Christ never asks of us such busy labor as leaves not time for resting at His feet; the waiting attitude of expectations He often counts as service most complete. – Anon.
Our value is not measured by what we do for God but by what He has done in us.
– Our Daily Bread, October 4, Vol. 17
“Human strength is a strong deterrent to trusting in Christ. When we rely on our own strength and knowledge, we assume we can handle situations without help from God. We tend to divide problems into two categories: problems that we know require God’s help and problems we think we can handle on our own.
If you feel strong in an area of your life, beware! Often your strength, rather than your weakness, hinders you from trusting God. God will bring you to a point of weakness if that is what it takes to bring you to trust in Him. Do not despise your weakness, for it leads you to trust in God’s strength.” – October 9, Experiencing God Daily Devotionals
“We cannot earn our way to heaven by word or work or worth; but if we trust in Christ to save us, we will receive new birth.” – Brown, Our Daily Bread, August 31, Vol. 18
“Salvation is a gift, not a paycheck.” – Our Daily Bread, August 31, Vol. 18
“Education and experience are of little value in predicting how well an applicant will do in particular position. What makes a person either fit or unfit for a job are the inner aptitudes (quickness and ease in learning or a natural tendency to do something well, especially one that can be further developed) for certain types of work. The right kind of giftedness is also essential to our effectiveness in the Lord’s work. Secondary factors such as talent and experience have their place. We function best and accomplish the most for the Lord when we do what we’ve been gifted to do. It’s fruitless and frustrating to try to do something we are not. God wants each of us to discover and confirm our gifts. Some of us might feel uncomfortable talking about our strengths, but these are not abilities we can take credit for. the Creator Himself has put gifts within us to benefit and build others and to fulfill His purposes.” – Mart De Haan, Our Daily Bread, July 15, Vol. 18
“While we obsess over our work, God quietly does His . He keeps the earth rotating, the planets revolving, and the season changing. Without any help from us. He makes the sun rise every morning and set every evening. Every night He changes the pattern of night lights in the sky. He turns out the light so we can sleep, and turns it on again so we can see to work and play. Without lifting a finger, we get to enjoy sunrises and sunsets. Every year the seasons change on schedule. We don’t need to pray about it or tell God that it’s time to send spring. All that He does reminds us He is good (Acts 14:17). Life will at times be difficult, often it is painful, and for now it is imperfect. But still it is good, for in all these things nothing can separate us from God’s lavish expressions or love (Romans 8:39).” – Julie Ackerman Link, Our Daily Bread, September 5, Vol. 16
“God’s grace is immeasurable; His mercy inexhaustible; His peace inexpressible.” – Our Daily Bread, September 5, Vol. 16
“When we are doing God’s will, He will be with us even without our asking. If we’re not doing His will, we need to ask for His forgiveness, change our course, and follow Him.” – Julie Ackerman Link, Our Daily Bread, August 3, Vol. 19
“No greater confidence will ever come to you or to any other Christian than the confidence of knowing you are doing God’s will. God will not commission you to do anything without ensuring your success. God does not promise you victory in every task you devise, but He does promise that you will be successful whenever you follow His will (Deut. 28:7,25). God will not allow anyone or anything to prevent His children from accomplishing His purposes.” – Experiencing God Daily Devotionals, Aug. 2
“We cannot know the future. But we can know this: No matter what comes, we are under the loving, caring, watchful eye of our great Shepherd, who also happens to be the Son of God!” – Dave Egner, Our Daily Bread, August 24, Vol. 19
“There is freedom that comes in having nothing to hide. Living a life of integrity allows you this freedom. Your integrity is measured not by what you say about yourself but by what God and people say about you. It takes courage to open life up to the scrutiny of others. If you have mistreated others, you cannot change the past, but you can choose to live with absolute integrity from this day forward. Living righteously frees you to face any person unashamedly, knowing you have behaved in a Christlike manner.” – Experiencing God Daily Devotionals, Aug. 10
“Money changes hands – just be sure it doesn’t change the rest of you!” and “If people say you’re made of money, you should work on your personality.”
“You can be “well off” when it comes to worldly treasures and yet be in dire poverty in your soul. Or you can be poor in terms of earthside stuff and be lavishly rich by God’s standards. It’s not the Jesus is against wealth. It’s just that He is grieved by anything that we value more than Him. We can work hard and make money, but when those things are the main pursuit of life, then Jesus isn’t. Placing Him first and foremost in our lives is the key to true prosperity.” – Joe Stowell.
“Don’t let riches – or the pursuit of riches – derail your pursuit of Jesus. – Our Daily Bread, August 17, Vol. 17
“Many people don’t want to admit that life tomorrow is not guaranteed. We don’t know if we’ll live until tomorrow, or for 50 more years.” – Dave Branon
“Death could come at any time – so we must be ready all the time.” – Our Daily Bread, July 20, Vol. 18
No matter what our situation, God sees, knows, and cares.
If God sees the sparrow’s fall, paints the lilies short and tall, gives the skies their azure hue, will He not then care for you? – Our Daily Bread, July 12, Vol. 16
The Bible calls the pursuit of more stuff “greed.” The “good life” cannot be found in things. Poverty in purpose is worse than poverty in purse. – Our Daily Bread, July 12, Vol. 14
“The measure of greatness in the kingdom of God differs vastly from that of the world. Our society idolizes the right, the powerful, the beautiful, and the athletic. We even make celebrities out of those who brazenly flaunt their immorality. The world claims it is demeaning to serve others. However, God’s kingdom completely rejects the world’s measure for esteem, giving the greatest honor to the one who serves the most. The person who serves selflessly, lovingly, without complaint, and without seeking recognition is highly regarded in the kingdom of God.
The world will estimate your importance by the number of people serving you. God is more concerned with the number of people you are serving.” – Experiencing God Daily Devotionals, June 23
“It’s better to be a quiet, honest sage who, though forgotten, leaves much good behind, than a swaggering, strident fool who, though many applaud him, ‘destroys much good’ (Ecclesiastes 9:16). What matters in the end is not the recognition and gratitude we receive for the Bread, June 22, Vol. 17
“Time isn’t marching on – it’s running out! We want to remain young, but Scriptures reminds us that the years pass and death will one day arrive.”
“You can’t control the length of your life, but you can control its depth.”
“Our vigor is fleeting, our best years are brief, our youth passes quickly – time’s ever a thief, but hope yet becomes us – death’s sting holds no power, we have a Redeemer – an unfailing Tower” – Gustafson
– Our Daily Bread, June 20, Vol. 17
“We refuse to leave our comfort zones. We like to stick to the familiar, the predictable, the usual. We tend to stay where we feel unthreatened, among people who make us feel accepted and loved.” – Our Daily Bread, June 24, Vol. 18
“Our main tasks – worshiping our awesome God. And we can do it in the following ways:
Meditate on HIs many attributes.
- Exalt God for He is faithful, eternal, all-knowing, just, unchangeable, gracious, holy, merciful, longsuffering, impartial, and infinite. Our God is perfect. Exalt God by realizing that He is all-powerful, almighty, personal, righteous, unsearchable, wise, triune, accessible, self-existent, glorious, and compassionate.
Contemplate His names.
- Exalt God, for He is Creator, Love, Redeemer, Shepherd, Savior, Lord, Father, Judge, Comforter, Teacher, I AM. Our God is the Mighty One.
Dwell on His identity.
- God is our shield, stronghold, light, strength, sustainer, rescuer, fortress.
Adore Him.Respect Him.Honor Him.Love Him.Exalt Him.”
– Our Daily Bread, February 13, Vol. 19
“Our generation is preoccupied with methods. When we find a package that works in one business, we immediately want to package and distribute it so that it will work for others. This attitude carries over into the spiritual life as well. We spend much energy looking for spiritual disciplines, books, seminars, or conferences that “work” in order to feel satisfied with out Christian life. God does not want us to trust in methods. He wants us to trust in Him.
Trusting in methods rather than in a Person seriously limits the way we experience God. When we expect Him to speak to us only in predictable ways, we forget that God is much more complex than our perception of Him.
Don’t limit yourself to a method, expecting only to hear from your Father in predictable ways. Rather, open yourself up to other means by which God wants to commune with you. Allow the Holy Spirit to sensitize you to God’s message at all times, in every location, under any circumstance. Then you will experience God in entirely new dimensions as you are receptive to His voice.” – Experiencing God Daily Devotions, June 8
“Bad things happen – tragic and horrible things. Good things happen – amazing and miraculous things. And all this happen randomly to us. But it is not random to the God who cradles our aching hearts. He knows. . . . Suffering will come. But God is …. larger than the events that seem to contradict God’s goodness.”
“We will experience sickness, accidents, sorrow, and death. But we are not on our own. God is in control (Psalm 34:19).”
“God is always in control behind the scenes.” – Our Daily Bread, June 6, Vol. 14
“In Christ’s kingdom, humility trumps pride every time.” (Luke 14:11) – Our Daily Bread, June 23, Vol. 19
“We may successfully fool others, but God knows our hearts.” (1 Samuel 16:7) – Our Daily Bread, June 4, Vol. 17
“Sin may be hidden from others, but never from God.” (Psalm 69:5, Hebrews 4:13, Luke 12:2-3) – Our Daily Bread, June 1, Vol. 19
“Prayer should be our first response rather than our last resort.” – Our Daily Bread, June 2, Vol. 17
“When we have nothing left but God, we find that God is enough.” – Our Daily Bread, May 26, Vol. 18
“Worry can do a lot of things to you; prayer can do a lot of things for you.” – Our Daily Bread, May 27, Vol. 18
“Think before you act; think twice before you speak.” – Our Daily Bread, May 18, Vol. 18
“Victory and great accomplishments are not necessarily a sign of God’s presence. Do not assume that your good health, your profitable business, or the growth of your ministry is due to the presence of God. It may be that you have you have inadvertently chosen success over your walk with the Lord. Success in the world’s eyes are not a sign of God’s blessing. It may, in fact, indicate that you have chosen a substitute for intimate fellowship with God.” – Experiencing God Daily Devotionals, May 10
“A friend multiplies our joys and divides our sorrows.”
“Love gives others the benefit of the doubt.” (1 Corinthians 13:7) – Our Daily Bread, May 7, Vol. 19
“A Christian who is willing to do little things for others can do great things for the Lord.” – Our Daily Bread, May 9, Vol. 17
“God is the master of turning burdens into blessings.” – Our Daily Bread, May 8, Vol. 16
“There is no place or time we cannot pray.” – Our Daily Bread, May 5, Vol. 19
“We must pray even when I don’t see the need. We need God just as much when we’re being blessed as when I am in crisis.” – Julie Ackerman Link (Our Daily Bread, May 8, Vol. 17)
“It’s easy to forget to talk to God when everything is going our own way; but that’s the time we really need Him most, lest we depart from Him and go astray.” – Hess (Our Daily Bread, May 8, Vol. 17)
“There is never a day when you don’t need to pray.” – Our Daily Bread, May 8, Vol. 17
“Whatever yo do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus.” – Colossians 3:17
“Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. – Matthew 6:1
“Duty alone is drudgery; duty with love is delight.” – Our Daily Bread, May 7, Vol. 17
‘God is never too busy to listen to His children.” – Our Daily Bread, May 6, Vol. 17
“Sinful choices create their own kind of junk – unintended consequences.” – Dennis Fisher (Our Daily Bread, April 29, Vol. 14)
“In God’s eyes, true greatness is serving others.” – Our Daily Bread, May 2, Vol. 16
“When all you have is God, you have all you need.” – Our Daily Bread, May 2, Vol. 17
“A friend multiples your joy and divides your sorrows.”
“God may calm the storm around but more often He’ll calm the storm within you.” – Our Daily Bread, April 13, Vol. 18
“We lost the joy of living in the present when we worry about the future.” – Our Daily Bread, May 24, Vol. 19
“Worry doesn’t improve the future, it only ruins the present.” – Our Daily Bread, April 26, Vol. 18
“In a fight no one ever wins. Both are losers.” – M. R. De Haan (Our Daily Bread, April 30, Vol. 18)
“What matters is no how long you live, but how well you live. It’s not the quantity of life but the quality of life and what we accomplish for the Lord that makes life meaningful.” – M. R. De Haan (Our Daily Bread, April 25, Vol. 18)
“It’s better to add life to your years than to add years to your life.” – Our Daily Bread, April 25, Vol. 18
“There’s no bigger hypocrite than the person who pretends he doesn’t need Jesus.” – Our Daily Bread, April 17, Vol. 18
“The biggest hypocrite of all, is the man or woman who refuse to come to Christ because there are so many hypocrites in the church. Such a person is inconsistent. Business is full of hypocrites, but that does not stop him from doing business. Society is full them, but he does not decide to become a hermit. Hell is full of hypocrites, so if a person doesn’t like hypocrites he had better sure he’s not going there.” – M. R. De Haan (Our Daily Bread, April 17, Vol. 18)
God does not save us by grace so that we may live in disgrace. – Faber (Our Daily Bread, April 30, Vol. 19)