Our Daily Bread — Grace Amid the Chaos

Bible in a Year:

They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven.

Psalm 107:30

Today’s Scripture & Insight:

Psalm 107:23–32

I was drifting off into an impromptu nap when it hit me. From the basement, my son ripped a chord on his electric guitar. The walls reverberated. No peace. No quiet. No nap. Moments later, competing music greeted my ears: my daughter playing “Amazing Grace” on the piano.

Normally, I love my son’s guitar playing. But in that moment, it jarred and unsettled me. Just as quickly, the familiar notes of John Newton’s hymn reminded me that grace thrives amid the chaos. No matter how loud, unwanted, or disorienting the storms of life might be, God’s notes of grace ring clear and true, reminding us of His watchful care over us.  

We see that reality in Scripture. In Psalm 107:23–32, sailors struggle mightily against a maelstrom that could easily devour them. “In their peril, their courage melted away” (v. 26). Still, they didn’t despair but “cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress” (v. 28). Finally, we read: “They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven” (v. 30).

In chaotic moments, whether they’re life-threatening or merely sleep-threatening, the barrage of noise and fear can storm our souls. But as we trust God and pray to Him, we experience the grace of His presence and provision—the haven of His steadfast love.

By:  Adam Holz

Reflect & Pray

When have you experienced God’s haven of peace in other people? To whom might you offer similar encouragement?  

Father, help me to remember to call out to You when the waters of life are rising, and help me to offer hope to others.


Grace to You; John MacArthur – Satan’s Conqueror

“Since . . . the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might deliver those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives” (Heb. 2:14-15).

Christ came to break the power of Satan which He did by conquering death.

To be free to live with God and share in all His blessings, someone had to shatter Satan’s death grip on us. Sin is what gives Satan his powerful hold on us, but the power itself is death.

Satan knew that God required death for us because of sin. He knew that all died in Adam—that death became a certain fact of life. And he knew that men, if they remained as they were, would die and go out of God’s presence into hell forever. So he wants to hang onto men until they die because once they are dead, the opportunity for salvation is gone forever.

To wrest the power of death from Satan’s hand, God sent Christ into the world. If you have a greater weapon than your enemy, then his weapon is useless. You can’t fight a machine gun with a bow and arrow. Satan’s weapon is death, but eternal life is God’s weapon, and with it Jesus destroyed death.

How was He able to do it? He rose again, proving He had conquered death. That’s why He said, “Because I live, you shall live also” (John 14:19). His resurrection provides the believer with eternal life.

Nothing terrifies people more than the fear of death. But when we receive Christ, death in reality holds no more fear for us since it simply releases us into the presence of our Lord. We can say with Paul, “To me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Phil. 1:21). Rejoice that you have placed your hand into the hand of the conqueror of death, who will lead you through death and out the other side.

Suggestion for Prayer

Ask God to give you a greater realization that He has conquered death to help you live life more fully to His glory.

For Further Study

Read 1 Corinthians 15:50-58. How are we to live our lives based on what we know about death?

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur


Joyce Meyer – Help for the Weary

I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched. My eyes fail, looking for my God. Those who hate me without reason outnumber the hairs of my head; many are my enemies without cause, those who seek to destroy me….

— Psalm 69:3-4

Clearly, David the psalmist was weary when he penned the words of today’s scripture. He actually says, “I am worn out.” All kinds of situations can drain our physical and emotional resources, and too much stress over a long period of time definitely causes weariness.

When we are weary, we need our strength restored, and the Bible says that God will help us: But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:31 NIV).

I believe we can make ourselves weary through the way we think and talk about the situations we face in life. No doubt, some of them are draining because of all they demand from us, but we can make them better or worse with our thoughts and words.

The Holy Spirit is available to help, strengthen, and restore us. He will not help us complain or be negative about the pressures we face, but He will help us think and speak about them according to God’s Word. He will give us wisdom to deal with our problems effectively. He will give us grace and make things easier than they would otherwise be. He will strengthen us in faith, and He will help us hope in the Lord, which, according to Isaiah 40:31, is where we will renew our strength.

Prayer of the Day: Lord, when I am weary, give me the grace to hope in You, trusting You to renew my strength, amen


Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – All Things Made New

God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.

Revelation 21:3-4

The whole idea of a new heaven and a new earth is hard to comprehend. But we can say with absolute certainty that God is going to take what is present and transform it, and He’s determined that no one and nothing will be capable of destroying His perfected kingdom. We can say this with such certainty because He is the God who is powerful to keep His promises, seen most gloriously of all at a wooden cross and an empty tomb. Right now, behind the scenes of what we call history, God is preparing to bring His kingdom in all its fullness—and it is, in fact, something He has been preparing from all of eternity. When Christ returns, He will usher in this new kingdom, a new heaven and earth in which righteousness dwells.

When God’s perfected kingdom is finally established, sin will have been punished, justice will have been satisfied, and evil will have been destroyed. There will be no more death, mourning, crying, or pain. Those will all be merely “the former things” that will have “passed away.” When God brings His kingdom to fruition, when His perfect plan unfolds, no one and nothing will be able to spoil it.

The word “new” as it is used to describe the new heaven and new earth in Revelation is not describing time or origin; it’s describing kind and quality. In other words, God is going to transform creation so that it reflects all the glory and magnificence that He originally intended for it. Satan will not get the satisfaction of watching God destroy His creation. Rather, God is going to use fire to purify it, just as He once used water in the days of Noah (2 Peter 3:5-7).

So the new earth will still be earth. It will be a physical place inhabited by physical people, but now it “shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:9). No wonder, then, that the whole of creation stands on tiptoe, longing to be liberated from its bondage to sin and decay (Romans 8:19-22)!

This new creation is worth waiting for. It is worth living for and even dying for. God is going to renew all things—our souls, our minds, our bodies, and even the environment in which we live. None of the things which currently spoil life on earth will be present, and all that is hoped for, all that is anticipated, will find its fulfillment.

So “we wait eagerly” (Romans 8:23). There is never a need to despair, no matter how dark life may become—for the day God wipes your tears away lies ahead. And “we wait for it with patience” (v 25). There is never a need to seek to seize all you think you need now, no matter how tempting that may be—for the day when God brings all the joy and satisfaction you could imagine lies ahead. Let eagerness and patience be your watchwords today.


Romans 8:18-25

Topics: Heaven Hope Kingdom of God

Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotional by Alistair Begg, 


Kids4Truth Clubs Daily Devotional – When the Wicked Are Planning, God Is Laughing

“The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnasheth upon him with his teeth. The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.” (Psalm 37:12-13)

Does it ever seem like the disobedient kids you know get all the attention? Everyone knows who they are, and it can seem as though they get chosen to receive special attention. At least, the teacher spends extra time with them. If you’ve ever noticed this before, you probably agree with the psalmist in Psalm 73:3 when he says, “For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.” The psalmist had begun to feel a little bit jealous, because he had been trying so hard to keep doing what was right – yet it seemed to him that those who were habitually sinning were getting rewarded for wrongdoing!

But the psalmist’s jealous heart changed when he began to think about the real situation that wicked people are in. His psalm goes on to say that he stopped being jealous of the way the wicked seemed to be prospering. He talked to God about how he had been feeling, and God made it clear that the wicked were soon going to be destroyed – destroyed quickly and completely (Psalm 73:19).

God’s Word reveals clearly that He is laughing at the wicked. He is a merciful God, and He is a kind God. In one sense, God is open to the wicked and invites them to change their ways: If wicked people were to repent of their sins and trust Christ as Savior, God would gladly and graciously welcome them into His family. But there is another sense in which God delights to see justice brought upon unjust people. If there are wicked people who seem to be “winning” here on Earth while people who love and obey God seem to be “losing,” you can trust that God is aware (He knows) and that God will see that justice is done.

That’s why the Bible says God laughs when the wicked plot (plan evil things to do) against His people. God laughs because He knows what the wicked people cannot know. From His view in heaven, God can see everything happening – past, present, and future – and He knows the future of wicked people. For a little while, it may appear that wicked people are blessed while obedient people suffer. But that is not how it will always be. One day, God Himself will destroy those wicked people who do not repent of their wrongdoing. He knows about the destruction of the wicked. He also knows how He will one day bless those who are being faithful to Him.

God laughs at the wicked because He knows that their destruction is coming soon.

My Response:
» Am I one of the wicked ones who God is laughing at? If yes, should I confess that to Him and ask Him to help me change?
» Am I jealous of the wicked? If yes, should I confess that to God and ask Him to give me faith in His faithfulness?

Denison Forum – Pelé, perhaps the greatest soccer player in history, dies at 82

Pelé, called the “global face of soccer” by the New York Times, has died after a battle with cancer. After canceling more than 2,300 of its flights yesterday, Southwest Airlines plans to return to normal operations today “with minimal disruptions.” As Ukrainians face freezing winter temperatures, Russia has launched what appears to be one of its largest strikes to date on their energy infrastructure.

Police in Buffalo, New York, arrested ten people for looting amid the deadly winter storm that buried much of western New York. And 85 percent of rural land in California is now at a “high” or “very high” risk for wildfires, according to a new analysis.

Why did I begin today’s Daily Article with these stories? I never watched Pelé play soccer. I have no current plans to fly on Southwest Airlines. Nor do I live in Ukraine, western New York, or rural California. But you and I were made by God as empathetic, communal beings: “It is not good that the man should be alone” (Genesis 2:18). The happiness or pain of some is experienced as happiness or pain by the rest of us.

The same is true of experiences long past. Millions will sing “Auld Lang Syne” tomorrow evening with its question, “Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?”

And we seek happiness not just in the present and from the past but for the future. We will wish each other a “Happy New Year,” all the while wishing we could do more than wish for such happiness.

It turns out, we can. But only if we look in the right place.

Our souls need “seven rests”

According to an American Psychological Association survey, more than a quarter of Americans say they are so stressed most days that they cannot function. And more than one in five Americans report feeling serious anxiety or depression.

How should we respond?

Counselors tell us that some of our anxieties are avoidable and are due to hunger, sleep deprivation, being over-caffeinated, and medical issues. We can take practical steps such as addressing burnout and enhancing our well-being through a workout. We can free ourselves from “task paralysis” by breaking tasks down into small, tangible steps and rewarding ourselves when we complete them, and we can identify our wellness nonnegotiables such as coffee in the morning.

We are encouraged to face our crises with people we can trust who are navigating the same issues. And psychologists advise us to seek “seven rests”: physical, mental, sensory, emotional, social, creative, and spiritual.

The last “means connecting on a deeper level with something greater than ourselves,” which “can mean adding prayer, meditation, or purpose to our lives” through “a church, a volunteer program, community outreach, or even nature retreats.”

Life as a chest of drawers

In my survey of news sources regarding happiness, I was struck by their secularity. Even the paragraph on spirituality in the article on “seven rests” points us to “something greater than ourselves” with no suggestion that this “something” could be a Someone.

In Jesus the Great Philosopher: Rediscovering the Wisdom Needed for the Good Life, Jonathan T. Pennington notes that “our modern lives are often built like a chest of drawers, with distinct compartments for each area. Even as we keep our socks, underwear, exercise clothes, and jeans in different drawers . . . so too our lives have distinct compartments—health, relationships, money, education, leisure, religion.”

He adds: “Christian people have a specific drawer for Jesus. For some it is a low-placed half drawer that is only opened once a week or maybe twice a month on Sundays. For others—especially pastors and missionaries—the Jesus drawer is big and probably at the top of the cabinet with well-oiled rollers. Most Christians’ ‘Jesus drawers’ are somewhere in between.”

Pennington cites theologian Peter Leithart, who observed that many Christians are dualists, mistakenly living our lives like a layered cake with supernatural truths on the top layer of an otherwise natural cake. In this worldview, according to Leithart, the “church adds a spiritual dimension to my life but leaves my natural world more or less intact.”

While we have a “Jesus drawer” others do not, it is only one drawer among many.

How to “experience meaningful happiness”

Our culture has been compartmentalizing us into body, soul, and spirit since the ancient Greeks. Why is this bad for us?

According to Pennington, “Humans are organic beings who thrive only when the many parts of our lives are connected together. . . . We cannot treat our lives as if the various parts are unrelated and expect to experience meaningful happiness and the flourishing life that Jesus talks about.”

So, if we want happiness for ourselves and others in the coming year, we will need to travel the ancient pathway: “Delight yourself in the Lᴏʀᴅ, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4). How do we do this? The psalmist explains: “Commit your way to the Lᴏʀᴅ; trust in him, and he will act” (v. 5).

Your “way” in the Hebrew refers to your “journey” today. When you “commit” or surrender it to God, you can “trust in him” to “act” in ways that “give you the desires of your heart.” C. S. Lewis was therefore right to claim, “God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.”

James Clear advised us: “You just need to have the courage to eliminate everything that doesn’t directly feed what you really want.”

What do you “really want” in the coming year?

Denison Forum