Joyce Meyer – Do What the Crisis Demands

Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place].

— Ephesians 6:13 (AMPC)

When you are in a difficult situation, do what you know to do, but don’t feel pressured to take action if you have no direction from God. Ask God to open your mind to new ways of doing and seeing things. If He shows you something, then do it, and if He doesn’t, then remain peaceful and trust that He will work for you and do what you cannot do.

Think and speak, “It is not shameful to not know what to do, nor should I feel pressured that I must ‘do something.'” Nobody has all the answers, all the time, except God. Stay peaceful and stand firmly in Christ, trusting Him to guide you.

Prayer of the Day: Father, thank You for Your guidance and direction. Thank You for the reminder that it is not shameful to not know what to do. Please open my mind to new ways of doing and seeing things. May Your will be done in my life, amen.

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg –A Mark of True Godliness

Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

1 Peter 5:5

True godliness grows in the soil of humility. We may have great giftings, wonderful abilities, great aspirations, tremendous passion, and the utmost diligence, and we may even apparently be successful and useful—but all of that amounts to nothing if we lack humility.

So, what is humility? Genuine humility reveals itself in keeping short accounts in regard to sin: coming continually to God with a repentant heart and recognizing ourselves to be in desperate need of God’s help every day and for every occasion. It lies in understanding that our need of Jesus and His transforming power in our lives is not partial; it’s total. As Jesus Himself told us, “Apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). Humility recognizes that the very breath we breathe, all that we possess, and all that we are result from God’s grace and goodness to us.

Humility means serving rather than being served. It means giving rather than taking. It means responding to the leadership of others rather than always insisting upon our own. It means fitting into others’ arrangements rather than demanding that everyone fit into ours.

Yet the humility of those who serve Christ is not merely an absence of pride or an awareness of our limitations. The opposite of self-love is not self-denigration but love for God. The answer to our being puffed up is not to hate ourselves or to deny the gifts God has given us; it is to steel our focus on the Lord Himself, recognizing, as the psalmist says, that God has exalted above all things His name and His word (Psalm 138:2).

The only people whom God will ultimately lift up are humble people—those who have recognized who they are, what they are, and how great their need of God is. Through the prophet Isaiah God declared, “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit” (Isaiah 57:15, emphasis added). Later, He added, “This is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word” (Isaiah 66:2).

Keep your eyes on the Lord Jesus, and He will look to you. You did not make yourself. You did not save yourself. You did not gift yourself. You are utterly dependent upon God’s grace. Look to Him, and He will lift you up. And when you know yourself to be lifted up in His loving sight, then you are ready to serve His people with all that He has given you.

Questions for Thought

How is God calling me to think differently?

How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?

What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?

Further Reading

Luke 1:46-55

Topics: Dependence on God Humility Service

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

Kids4Truth Clubs Daily Devotional – God Has Everlasting Arms

“The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” (Deuteronomy 33:27)

The highlight of each fall in Andrew’s hometown is attending the Riley Days Festival downtown. Every year, their town has a parade, live entertainment, craft booths, and yummy food filling the streets surrounding the courthouse. Andrew’s family always looked forward to Riley Days, and they would usually set aside the entire weekend for attending the festival.

During one of these Riley Days evenings, Andrew was having a hard time keeping up with the rest of the family. He had sprained his neck during a dodge ball game earlier that day, and it was really starting to bother him as their family walked around the festival.

Finally, Andrew asked his dad, “Will you carry me?” His dad was glad to carry him, and Andrew was so relieved. It was wonderful to let his body go limp in his dad’s arms. Andrew did not have put out all that energy to hold his head up. He could trust in his dad’s strength to carry him in a time when he was very weak.

In the same way that Andrew’s dad was glad to carry him around the festival that night, your heavenly Father will carry you through difficult times. When you are facing troubles and feel overwhelmed by the weight of them, let God carry you through them. He commands us to cast our care upon Him. Why? Because He cares for us. When you are weakest, He is always strong. Read His Word, and take comfort in His promises to you. God’s “arms” will never get tired (His strength and comfort and grace will never wear out) as He carries you through those difficult times. The Bible says that He has “everlasting arms.”

If you are facing difficult circumstances and have been trying to work hard in your own strength–stop it! Crawl into your heavenly Daddy’s arms; trust Him; and let Him carry you.

God is a refuge, and He has everlasting arms.

My Response:
» Have you been overwhelmed by troubles, rather than resting in God’s everlasting arms?
» Can you handle all your own problems?
» How can you help others learn to trust in the God of the Bible?

Denison Forum – “Abortion can be a powerful act of love”: The danger of performative truth

“We have become a nation that is more focused on the right to kill than the right to live.”

This is how California Gov. Gavin Newsom responded to the mass shooting in Allen, Texas, as he criticized Congress for not passing gun control reform. However, given his passionate support for elective abortion and efforts to bring women from other states to California’s abortion clinics, pro-life supporters like me find his statement tragically ironic.

On the same theme, I found this headline in a recent Time article jarring: “If someone you love has an abortion, give them a gift.” The writer thanks “friends and neighbors who dropped off big pots of soup [and] home-baked brownies and ice cream” when she had her abortion.

She writes: “Abortion can be a powerful act of love—for one’s self and one’s own future, for one’s existing children and family, for the pregnancy being released and thus spared from the circumstances informing the pregnant person’s decision, and often for a combination of all these things.”

This is the first time I’ve seen abortion called “a powerful act of love” for the unborn baby whose life it ends.

I promise to write tomorrow’s Daily Article

Merriam-Webster defines a “performative” speech act as “an expression that serves to effect a transaction or that constitutes the performance of the specified act by virtue of its utterance.” An example is my promise to write tomorrow’s Daily Article: this act brings something into being that did not exist until it was stated in words.

By contrast, a “constative” utterance “is capable of being judged true or false” on its merits. An example is my claim to have written yesterday’s Daily Article: you can check the article’s authorship on our website or in your inbox. If you are still skeptical, you can investigate further by consulting our editorial staff.

We now live in a culture dominated by “performative” truth claims. In this view, if I state that I am a female, even though I was born a biological male, my statement must be true even though I have no empirical way to verify it. If the Supreme Court discovers and proclaims a “right” to same-sex marriage in the Constitution, even though it overturns millennia of cultural consensus and practice in so doing, its declaration must nonetheless be true.

We have now progressed (or regressed) to the point that even performative statements that clearly contradict facts and evidence are to be taken as truth. For example, the Time article normalizing abortion claims, “Abortion has always existed on the same spectrum as birth, miscarriage, infertility, and so many other human experiences.” This is simply untrue: leaders across twenty centuries of Christian history consistently considered elective abortion to be intrinsically immoral. But the writer wants it to be true, so for her, it is.

Such “performative” reality pervades our politics as well, as Chris Stirewalt explains: do something to get covered by the media, then coverage drives polls, polls drive the media narrative, and that narrative drives reality.

“The heart wants what it wants”

Emily Dickinson described the foundational fact of fallen human nature: “The heart wants what it wants.” It is therefore unsurprising that our culture persists in confusing performative and constative truth claims, substituting our personal preferences for objective morality and calling them “our truth.”

When we can abort an unwanted pregnancy and locate our decision on “the same spectrum as birth, miscarriage, [and] infertility,” we get to do what we want while claiming moral status for our unbiblical decision. When we redefine gender, marriage, and the right to die under the guise of personal truth, we tolerate the unbiblical decisions others make, so they will tolerate the unbiblical decisions we make.

However, God knows the reality behind our performative truth claims: “Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lᴏʀᴅ looks on the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). In the end, his assessment of right and wrong is the only one that matters: “We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil” (2 Corinthians 5:10).

“They have brought this evil on themselves”

I am reading the book of Isaiah as part of my personal Bible study these days and am consistently troubled about my nation as a result. Because neither divine nor human nature changes, what was true for ancient Israel is true for America today.

Consider this prophetic statement, substituting our nation for Israel: “[America] shall be redeemed by justice, and those in her who repent, by righteousness. But rebels and sinners shall be broken together, and those who forsake the Lᴏʀᴅ shall be consumed” (Isaiah 1:27–28).

Because God is holy, he must judge sin: “The haughty looks of man shall be brought low, and the lofty pride of men shall be humbled, and the Lᴏʀᴅ alone will be exalted in that day” (Isaiah 2:11). Consequently, “Jerusalem has stumbled, and Judah has fallen, because their speech and their deeds are against the Lᴏʀᴅ, defying his glorious presence” (Isaiah 3:8).

For this reason: “They proclaim their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! For they have brought evil on themselves” (v. 9). By contrast, “Tell the righteous that it shall be well with them, for they shall eat the fruit of their deeds” (v. 10).

“The fire of the Lᴏʀᴅ fell”

I am leading a study tour of Israel this week. Today our group will visit Mt. Carmel, where the prophet Elijah faced 450 prophets of Baal who cloaked horrific sexual immorality in the guise of their false religion (1 Kings 18:22).

You remember what happened: the one true God honored Elijah’s sacrifice when “the fire of the Lᴏʀᴅ fell and consumed the burnt offering” (v. 38). As a result, “When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, ‘The Lᴏʀᴅ, he is God; the Lᴏʀᴅ, he is God’” (v. 39).

In a broken world, God still uses courageous individuals to turn the tide. Does America need more Elijahs?

Will you be one today?

Denison Forum

Hagee Ministries; John Hagee –  Daily Devotion

Proverbs 18:22

He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the LORD.

In honor of Mother’s Day and in fulfillment of Proverbs 31:28, Pastor Matt Hagee shared this sweet story regarding his wife, Kendal. She was born at Santa Rosa Hospital in San Antonio on May 10. Just a few months later in July, Pastor Matt was born at the same hospital. In anticipation of things to come, he assured us that she left her name and number at the nurse’s station.

In 2001, he was not married, was not dating, and his parents were getting worried. He took matters in hand, and on October 21, 2001, he wrote and taped this note into his study Bible:

“Dear Heavenly Father, these things I promise to pray every day without ceasing until You provide the desire of my heart, a wife.

That she would love You and Your kingdom with all of her heart, her soul, her mind, and her body.
That she would love me for me and nothing else.
That she would have a good understanding of family because I’ve got a big one.
That her parents would value and cherish marriage.
That she loves children.
That she loves people.
That she has a servant’s heart.
That I could trust her with my heart.
That I would be able to tell her anything.
That I could be me in front of her.
That she’d never be ashamed of me or what God has called me to be.
That she would be pure under the blood of the Lamb.
That she would have a deep hunger for God.
That she would love to be treated like a queen.
That she would have dark hair and blue eyes.

… when God heard me praying for a wife, He answered my prayers with you, [Kendal].”

If you are single and longing for a spouse with whom to share your life, if you are married and yearning for a child to hold in your arms, even if Mother’s Day has little to do with you and your dreams, follow this simple step. Take your longings, yearnings, and dreams and write them down, make them plain, and pray them out to our loving Heavenly Father. He knows how to answer those prayers.


Heavenly Father, I write down my desires as plainly as I know how. These things I promise to pray every day, without ceasing, until You send the answer. In Jesus’ name… Amen.

Today’s Bible Reading: 

Old Testament

1 Samuel 8:1-9:27

New Testament 

John 6:22-46

Psalms & Proverbs

Psalm 106:32-48

Proverbs 14:34-35

Turning Point; David Jeremiah – Spiritual and Material

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.
Psalm 103:2

 Recommended Reading: Psalm 103:1-5

We live in a world that is both material and spiritual. On the material side, we access our world through our five senses: sight, touch, taste, smell, and hearing. It is no wonder the apostle John warned about “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life”—“all that is in the world” (1 John 2:16). It is easy to be enticed by the things of this world, to think they will bless our life.

But the Bible says that God’s blessings are both material and spiritual. He forgives our sins, heals our diseases, redeems us from destruction, loves us, shows compassion to us, satisfies our life with good things, and renews our youth (Psalm 103:3-5). The world cannot offer anything to compare with the dual dimensions of God’s blessings—spiritual and material. When we are tempted to seek blessing and contentment in the things of this world, we need to look to God’s promised blessings.

Look around you today and count your blessings. Thank God for His provision and commit all your needs to Him.

The vast majority of mankind never gives a thought of gratitude towards God for all His care and blessings.
Donald Grey Barnhouse

Harvest Ministries; Greg Laurie – Ready to Listen

 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! 

—John 15:7


John 15:7 

Did you know that it’s possible to read the Bible out of pure duty—and not remember anything? We may read three chapters, but if the words don’t affect our lives, and if we don’t understand what we’ve read, then we would be better off reading three verses instead.

In Psalm 1 we find a description of those who walk with God: “They delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do” (verses 2–3 NLT).

To meditate means to ponder or chew on something. It means to think something over.

When it comes to God’s Word, how do you listen? Whether you are distracted or paying attention will make all the difference in your life.

Jesus said, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!” (John 15:7 NLT). The New King James version of this verse begins, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you . . .”

Think of a deeply rooted tree that is soaking up the nutrients from the soil and growing every day. In the same way, to “remain” or “abide” refers to staying in a given place. It’s staying in fellowship with Jesus.

As we do this, as we start sinking our roots deeply into Christ, we will start praying for what God wants us to pray for. That is the objective of prayer. It isn’t getting God to do what we want Him to do. Rather, it’s doing what God wants us to do.

When Jesus’ words remain in us, it means that, ultimately, they affect our thinking, our living, and everything that we do.

Our Daily Bread — Known by God

Bible in a Year:

[Mary] turned toward him and cried out . . . “Rabboni!”

John 20:16

Today’s Scripture & Insight:

John 20:11–18

After two brothers were separated by adoption, a DNA test helped to reunite them almost twenty years later. When Kieron texted Vincent, the man he believed was his brother, Vincent thought, Who is this stranger? When Kieron asked him what name he’d been given at birth, he immediately answered, “Tyler.” Then he knew they were brothers. He was recognized by his name!

Consider how a name plays a key role in the Easter story. As it unfolds, Mary Magdalene comes to Christ’s tomb, and she weeps when she finds His body missing. “Woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asks (John 20:15). She didn’t recognize Him, however, until He spoke her name: “Mary” (v. 16).

Hearing Him say it, she “cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (Which means ‘Teacher’)” (v. 16). Her reaction expresses the joy believers in Jesus feel on Easter morning, recognizing that our risen Christ conquered death for all, knowing each of us as His children. As He told Mary, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God” (v. 17).

In Georgia, two reunited brothers bonded by name, vowed to take “this relationship to the next level.” On Easter, we praise Jesus for already taking the utmost step to rise in sacrificial love for those He knows as His own. For you and me, indeed, He’s alive!

By:  Patricia Raybon

Reflect & Pray

How does it feel knowing that Jesus rose again and knows you by name? How can you know Him better?

Your knowledge of me is humbling, dear Jesus. Thank You for the sacrificial gift of Your knowing love.

Grace to You; John MacArthur – Known by God

Bible in a Year:

[Mary] turned toward him and cried out . . . “Rabboni!”

John 20:16

Today’s Scripture & Insight:

John 20:11–18

After two brothers were separated by adoption, a DNA test helped to reunite them almost twenty years later. When Kieron texted Vincent, the man he believed was his brother, Vincent thought, Who is this stranger? When Kieron asked him what name he’d been given at birth, he immediately answered, “Tyler.” Then he knew they were brothers. He was recognized by his name!

Consider how a name plays a key role in the Easter story. As it unfolds, Mary Magdalene comes to Christ’s tomb, and she weeps when she finds His body missing. “Woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asks (John 20:15). She didn’t recognize Him, however, until He spoke her name: “Mary” (v. 16).

Hearing Him say it, she “cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (Which means ‘Teacher’)” (v. 16). Her reaction expresses the joy believers in Jesus feel on Easter morning, recognizing that our risen Christ conquered death for all, knowing each of us as His children. As He told Mary, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God” (v. 17).

In Georgia, two reunited brothers bonded by name, vowed to take “this relationship to the next level.” On Easter, we praise Jesus for already taking the utmost step to rise in sacrificial love for those He knows as His own. For you and me, indeed, He’s alive!

By:  Patricia Raybon

Reflect & Pray

How does it feel knowing that Jesus rose again and knows you by name? How can you know Him better?

Your knowledge of me is humbling, dear Jesus. Thank You for the sacrificial gift of Your knowing love.

Joyce Meyer – How Being Happy Glorifies God

 Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart.

— Psalm 37:4 (AMPC)

What would you say if I told you we have an obligation to be as happy as we can possibly be? I believe we glorify God the most when we are the happiest in Him. Look at Psalm 37:4 again: It says we are to delight ourselves in the Lord.

I have striven for many years to learn how to do just that. Because of the way I was raised, I had the idea it was wrong to enjoy myself, until I saw that Jesus said He came so we might have joy in our lives and have it in abundance (see John 10:10, 16:24, 17:13). He wants our joy to be full!

The belief that holiness and happiness are at odds with each other is tragic. Let me assure you that you can live a life that is holy and pleasing to God and thoroughly enjoy your life at the same time. Smile, laugh, be happy and enjoy each moment that God gives you while you serve Him with your whole heart.

Prayer of the Day: Dear Lord, help me to always delight myself in You and to find joy in the life You have given me, knowing that holiness and happiness are not at odds with each other. Thank You, amen.

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – You Have a Shepherd

They went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves. Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they ran there on foot … When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things.

Mark 6:32-34

Christian, you have a Shepherd.

Jesus had a pattern of slipping away from time to time to rest, refresh himself, and talk with His heavenly Father. He also encouraged His disciples to take up this same practice in Mark 6, after they had labored in ministry, telling them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while” (Mark 6:31). Yet on this occasion, just as Jesus and the disciples arrived at their destination to rest, a great crowd formed. If this crowd was not necessarily unwanted, it was certainly unsought. There would be no possibility of rest. But Jesus did not lash out in frustration, seeing these people as an intrusion. Instead, He “had compassion on them.” Literally, as the Greek puts it, His bowels churned. We might say our stomach lurched.

Jesus was stirred to the very core of His being by this crowd. Why? “Because they were like sheep without a shepherd.” Indeed, they may literally have looked like sheep: thousands of people in their light-colored Middle Eastern clothing, scattered against the landscape. But, more importantly, they were in need of a shepherd for their souls. They needed help navigating safely through life and securely through death. Jesus had come to be that Shepherd, looking for the lost sheep—looking for you and for me.

Jesus went on to feed the crowd, physically and spiritually, proving Himself to be the Shepherd who makes us lie down in green pastures, leads us beside still waters, and restores our souls (Psalm 23:1-3). Here is the King inviting people into His kingdom, the Shepherd inviting sheep into His fold. Where the disciples said, Send them away, Jesus said, Sit them down (Mark 6:36, 39). This is what Jesus does for us: He sees us, hungry and thirsty, straying and lost, and He welcomes us, even at the cost of His own life. Where else can we find a love so true?

Souls of men, why will ye scatter
Like a crowd of frightened sheep?
Foolish hearts, why will ye wander
From a love so true and deep? [1]

Today, see the leading of your Shepherd not as an imposition on your life but as an act of grace toward you. If you are confused about your way forward, trust Him to guide you through, in this life and to the next. When you struggle to love others, ask Him to give you His heart of compassion for fellow lost sheep in need of a heavenly Shepherd. Christian, you have a Shepherd.

Questions for Thought

How is God calling me to think differently?

How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?

What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?

Further Reading

Psalm 23

Topics: Jesus Christ Love of God Restoration


1 Frederick William Faber, “Souls of Men, Why Will Ye Scatter” (1854).

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

Kids4Truth Clubs Daily Devotional – God Always Provides

“And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.” (I Kings 17:4)

During the days of Elijah the prophet, God sent a drought–a long period of time without rain–to the land of Israel. God was punishing Israel because the wicked rulers, King Ahab and Queen Jezebel, were causing the people to stop serving the Lord and to worship idols. Even though Elijah had warned King Ahab that God would punish them, Ahab did not listen. So God did not send any rain to Israel for a long time, and food could not grow. The people of Israel, including Elijah, soon became hungry and thirsty. Even though Elijah trusted in the Lord, he must have wondered where he would find food and water.

But God still took care of Elijah. Even though there was no rain and little food or water, God provided for the needs of His faithful servant. God knew where to find water, and He told Elijah to go to a little brook that still had water to drink. God also knew where to find food, and He commanded the ravens to bring bread and meat to Elijah. What a surprising way to meet the prophet’s needs! Twice a day, the black birds delivered food to him. Even though the people who worshipped idols were hungry and thirsty, Elijah always had enough to eat and drink. God always provided for the needs of His servant.

God will always take care of you, as well. If you truly know the Lord, He will always provide for your needs, just like He did for Elijah’s. Sometimes, like Elijah in the drought, you may find yourself in the middle of a hard situation. Maybe one of your parents has lost a job, and your family needs money. Or maybe you have moved to a new school, and you need to find good friends. Whatever your need, God will never forget about you. Like in Elijah’s time, God knows where to find the things you need (Matthew 6:8). He will always be faithful to provide for you–sometimes in surprising ways!

God will always meet your needs.

My Response:
» What are some needs I have?
» Am I trusting the Lord to provide for my needs?

Denison Forum – “You should write your obituary”: Why I disagree with Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, which owns dozens of companies. He has been extremely benevolent over the years, donating hundreds of millions of dollars to charitable causes. Forbes estimates his net worth at $1141 billion dollars. My net worth is several zeroes less.

Who, then, am I to disagree with the famed “Oracle of Omaha” when he gives advice?

The ninety-two-year-old was asked at Berkshire’s recent annual shareholder meeting how to avoid mistakes in business and in life. His response: “You should write your obituary and then try to figure out how to live up to it. It’s not that complicated.”

With all due respect to Mr. Buffett, it is. Or at least, it should be.

We can “write our obituary” without God’s help and, depending on what we choose to write, “figure out how to live up to it.” Or we can seek God’s best for our lives, knowing that we must then have his power if we are to fulfill his purpose.

There is an eternally significant chasm between these two options.

Almost a third of high-school girls considered suicide in 2021

Western secularism has been trying for generations to follow the path of self-reliance. As American playwright Tennessee Williams observed, “Snatching the eternal out of the desperately fleeting is the great magic trick of human existence.”

How is our “magic trick” working for us?

A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reports that mental health-related visits to emergency rooms by children, teenagers, and young adults have risen sharply in recent years. The worst escalation was for suicide-related visits, which increased fivefold.

According to recent data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly a third of female high-school students said they considered suicide in 2021. Nearly 60 percent said they felt sad or hopeless—the highest number in a decade. Depression became more common among young people across the past decade; in 2015, the suicide rate among teenage girls hit a forty-year high.

New York Times opinion columnist David French reminds us that politics cannot fix our deepest problems, such as pervasive loneliness, the crises of suicide and drug overdoses, and our yearning to love and be loved. The WHO can end its emergency declaration for COVID-19, but as Wall Street Journal writers Betsy McKay and Brianna Abbott note, “The pandemic has shattered an illusion that humanity has control over its environment.”

Rather that writing our own obituary and trying to live up to it, what if we allowed God to define our life mission and then partnered with him in fulfilling it? How would we do this?

One: Admit your need for divine grace

Our first step into such a life of empowered purpose is to admit our need for what only God can do in our lives. Billy Graham wrote: “Why can’t we live together in peace? The reason is that our hearts are selfish and filled with anger and greed and a lust for power. Until our hearts are changed, we will never know lasting peace.

“Tragically, we are a planet in rebellion against God. That is why the world’s greatest need is to turn to Christ. Only he can change us from within by his Holy Spirit. But even when wars rage, we can have peace in our heart as we open our life to Christ. Ask God to give you that peace—and pray that others will know it, too.”

Take a moment now to ask God to guide your life and your day into his peace for you. Pray for his Spirit to control and empower you as you step into his best (Ephesians 5:18).

Two: Partner persistently with God

St. Augustine noted that before we became Christians, it was not possible for us not to sin. Now it is: “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions” (Romans 6:12). God’s Spirit will help us, but we must want the holiness he empowers us to experience.

Paul asked regarding sin, “What fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed?” (v. 21). Remember that because Satan hates us, temptation must always cost more than it pays. Charles Spurgeon’s advice is relevant here: “When thou sleepest, think that thou art resting on the battlefield; when thou walkest, suspect an ambush in every hedge.”

One of Satan’s subtle strategies is to suggest that the persistence of temptation means it cannot be defeated. This is not true. Paul testified, “I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand” (Romans 7:21), yet he also stated, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). After Jesus’ victory, the devil “departed from him until an opportune time” (Luke 4:13), but he remained sinless (Hebrews 4:15). Persistence is vital to godliness.

Three: Live today for eternity

Today is the only day there is: “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring” (Proverbs 27:1). It is not “carpe diem” (“seize the day”) but “cedere diem” (“yield the day”) to God (cf. Matthew 11:29).

Live this day fully for the sake of eternity, remembering that every act of obedience on earth echoes in heaven (cf. Matthew 16:27).

“An endless day that knows no night”

St. Maximus of Turin (ca. 380–465) noted in a sermon: “The light of Christ is an endless day that knows no night.” As a result, “The coming of Christ’s light puts Satan’s darkness to flight, leaving no place for any shadow of sin. His everlasting radiance dispels the dark clouds of the past and checks the hidden growth of vice.”

St. Maximus then likened Christ’s glory in heaven to his power on earth: “The celestial day is perpetually bright and shining with brilliant light; clouds can never darken its skies. In the same way, the light of Christ is eternally glowing with luminous radiance and can never be extinguished by the darkness of sin.”

Will you walk in “the light of Christ” today?

Denison Forum

Hagee Ministries; John Hagee –  Daily Devotion

1 John 4:4

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

In today’s verse, John the Apostle writes to the believers at Ephesus to make a very important point. Greatness lies within them. They did not need to go in search of greatness, and neither do we. As believers of Jesus Christ, we have received His greatness by virtue of Him living in our hearts.

All around us, creation testifies of His magnificence. From the rising to the setting sun, from the tiniest atom to the far-flung galaxies, there is no one like Him — no one above Him or beside Him. He laid the foundations of the earth. He established the boundaries for the oceans and told their proud waves where to stop. He stores up snow in heaven’s treasuries (Job 38). That same God Who hung every star and called it by name knows your name (Psalm 147:4). He keeps count of the hairs on your head (Luke 12:7).

Before you were born, God masterfully wrote on the blank pages of your life. He inserted beauty, pain, struggle, tears, joy, and, yes, greatness — some verses and chapters that you might have chosen to omit. Every day has been recorded in His book! (Psalm 139:16)

If you choose to surrender to His quill — His plot line with its twists and surprises, your divine destiny — He will redeem all the pages and weave together a story of adventure, passion, mystery, and the greatest of loves. He will make you His living love letter to the world (II Corinthians 3:1-3), pointing them to the author and finisher of our faith of our faith (Hebrews 12:2).

Before He even formed you in your mother’s womb, He knew what you would need for this life. He has equipped you with great gifts and talents to use to bring glory and honor to His name. Most importantly, He has brought all that He is and all that He has to live inside of you.

He empowers you to do the impossible! Not only are you His workmanship — His masterpiece — He will show you the way to complete the good works that God has planned for you, the unique purposes for which He created you (Ephesians 2:10). Look no further. You have Greatness inside!


Heavenly Father, I am in awe that the Creator of the universe has come to live inside of me. In the daily humdrum of life, help me to be aware that there is greatness inside of me. Whatever I face, let me face it in the power of that greatness. Whatever I do, let me do it with the excellence of that greatness. Whomever I meet, let that greatness be extended to them. In Jesus’ name… Amen.

Today’s Bible Reading: 

Old Testament

1 Samuel 5:1-7:17

New Testament 

John 6:1-21

Psalms & Proverbs

Psalm 106:13-31

Proverbs 14:32-33

Turning Point; David Jeremiah – Cost Comparison

So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life.”
Mark 10:29-30

 Recommended Reading: Luke 14:25-27

We usually hear it in the context of athletics, but it applies to all areas of life: “No pain, no gain.” We tell our children that in order to make an A in history, they will have to sacrifice time spent on other activities and commit to studying. In order to have funds to live on in retirement, we have to sacrifice purchases now and commit to saving.

Jesus had to convince His early followers that any cost to following Him would be rewarded later: “a hundredfold now in this time… and in the age to come, eternal life.” Such a commitment required trust. To prioritize Jesus over family and property was a big decision. But Jesus was proving Himself to be trustworthy, and His early disciples took Him at His word.

 When the cost of following Jesus seems to go up, consider the cost in light of the return.

And all thou spendest, Jesus will repay.
Mary Ann Thompson

Harvest Ministries; Greg Laurie – Examples to Follow

 And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ. 

—1 Corinthians 11:1


1 Corinthians 11:1 

In the Great Commission, Jesus gave the command to “go and make disciples of all the nations” (Matthew 28:19 NLT). But we cannot take someone any further than we have come ourselves.

Sometimes people who have been Christians for ten or twenty years are still spiritual babies. They haven’t learned to feed themselves spiritually. They haven’t become as mature as they ought to be.

Writing to believers in Colosse, the apostle Paul said, “So we tell others about Christ, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all the wisdom God has given us. We want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ” (Colossians 1:28 NLT).

Some of us are not as far down the road as we should be as followers of Jesus. Yet we ought to be living godly lives to the extent that we could say, as Paul did, “And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1 NLT). In other words, “Follow my example.”

Maybe you’re thinking, “We should never ask people to follow our example. We should tell them to follow Jesus.” But that would be a cop-out.

Like it or not, people are looking at us as visible representatives of Jesus Christ. They are making evaluations about God according to the way that we live. Yes, it’s a lot of pressure. But it’s also part of being a disciple.

Being a disciple is walking with Jesus in such a way that you can say, “Follow my example.”

So, what if the church were filled with people just like you? Would it be a Bible-studying church? Would it be a worshipping church? And would it be an evangelistic church? What if everyone in the church walked and talked and dressed like you? What would the church be like?

Yes, we will mess up sometimes. But that doesn’t excuse us from being examples.

Our Daily Bread — Truth Seekers

Bible in a Year:

[Having] carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you.

Luke 1:3

Today’s Scripture & Insight:

Luke 1:1–4

A woman once told me about a disagreement that was tearing her church apart. “What’s the disagreement about?” I asked. “Whether the earth is flat,” she said. A few months later, news broke of a Christian man who’d burst into a restaurant, armed, to rescue children supposedly being abused in its back room. There was no back room, and the man was arrested. In both cases, the people involved were acting on conspiracy theories they’d read on the internet.

Believers in Jesus are called to be good citizens (Romans 13:1–7), and good citizens don’t spread misinformation. In Luke’s day, numerous stories circulated about Jesus (Luke 1:1), some of them were inaccurate. Instead of passing on everything he heard, Luke essentially became an investigative journalist, talking to eyewitnesses (v. 2), researching “everything from the beginning” (v. 3), and writing his findings into a gospel that contains names, quotes, and historical facts based on people with firsthand knowledge, not unverified claims.

We can do the same. Since false information can split churches and put lives at risk, checking facts is an act of loving our neighbor (10:27). When a sensational story comes our way, we can verify its claims with qualified, accountable experts, being truth seekers—not error spreaders. Such an act brings credibility to the gospel. After all, we worship the One who’s full of truth (John 1:14).

By:  Sheridan Voysey

Reflect & Pray

Why do you think conspiracy theories spread so quickly? How can you be a truth seeker?

Father, help me discern truth from error as Your Spirit guides me.

Grace to You; John MacArthur – Trials’ Lessons: Confidence in Heaven

“To obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:4).

We can rejoice after enduring a trial because our hope in Heaven will be renewed.

The joy a Christian experiences as a result of trials can be the best kind he will ever know. But so often we allow the everyday stress and strain of financial difficulties, health problems, unrealized goals, and many other trials to rob us of our joy in Christ. True joy stems from spiritual realities that are much greater than temporal circumstances.

In today’s verse Peter gives us one strong reason for rejoicing—the confident hope that as Christians we have inherited a place in Heaven. This confidence can be so powerful that Peter, who was writing to believers suffering persecution, describes it as a truth we ought to “greatly rejoice” in (v. 6). This expressive, intense word is always used in the New Testament in relation to the joy of knowing God, never of shallow, temporal relationships.

Jesus’ disciples had a difficult time seeing that trials could be related to the certainty of going to Heaven. In teaching them about His upcoming death, Christ told the Twelve, “Therefore you, too, now have sorrow; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one takes your joy away from you” (John 16:22). And that is exactly what happened when they saw the risen Savior and understood the impact of His work.

We can have two responses to trials, just like passengers riding a train through the mountains. We can look to the left and see the dark mountainside and be depressed. Or we can look to the right and be uplifted by the beautiful view of natural scenery stretching into the distance. Some believers even compound their sadness by continuing to look to the mountain shadows of their trial after life’s train has moved away from the threatening peaks. But they would not forfeit their joy if they simply looked ahead to the brightness and certainty of their eternal inheritance.

Nothing in life can take away the wonderful promise of Heaven’s glory: it was reserved by God, bought by Christ, and guaranteed by the Spirit (see Eph. 1:11-13).

Suggestions for Prayer

Ask the Lord to help you meditate today on the glories promised for you in the future.

For Further Study

Read Revelation 21 and note the primary living conditions that will be true of Heaven.

From Strength for Today by John MacArthur

Joyce Meyer – You Can Be Content in All Circumstances

 …I have learned how to be content (satisfied to the point where I am not disturbed or disquieted) in whatever state I am.

— Philippians 4:11 (AMPC)

People of God should be peaceful, joyful, thankful, and content. In Philippians 4:11 (AMPC), Paul said he learned how to be content. Well, I don’t know about you, but I spent many years, even as a believer, before I learned contentment, and I believe there are many others who struggle as I did trying to find it. You may be one of them.

I knew how to be satisfied if I was getting my own way—if everything was working exactly as I had planned—but how often does that happen? Very rarely, in my experience.

I knew absolutely nothing about how to handle even the ordinary trials that come along in most every person’s life. I didn’t know how to adapt to other people and things. I found out that a person who can only be satisfied when there are no disturbances in life will spend a great deal of time being discontented.

I finally desired stability enough that I was willing to learn whatever it took to have it. I wanted to be satisfied no matter what was going on around me.

The Amplified Bible defines the word content as “satisfied to the point where I am not disturbed or disquieted in whatever state I am in.” I appreciate this definition, because it does not say that I must be satisfied to the point where I don’t ever want change, but I can be satisfied to the point that I am not anxious or disturbed. I desperately wanted, and now enjoy, that kind of peace. How about you?

Trusting God and refusing to complain during hard times greatly honors Him. It is of no value to talk of how much we trust God only when all is well. But when difficulty comes, then we should say and sincerely mean, “I trust You, Lord.” He delights in a contented child. I have come to believe being content is one of the greatest ways we can glorify Him. Be content where you are while you are waiting for what you want or need.

Prayer of the Day: Father, help me learn to be content in every circumstance, to trust in You during difficult times, and to glorify You through my contentment, amen.

Truth for Life; Alistair Begg – Our Only Boast

Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”

Jeremiah 9:23-24

We live in a culture of self-promotion which encourages us to trust in ourselves instead of our Creator. Aware of our need to battle against self-reliance, God speaks to us through His word, encouraging us to boast—to find our confidence—in Him alone.

In an attempt to find wisdom apart from God, some pursue instead education and knowledge. Some are prone to rely primarily on physical strength or beauty, ignoring the reality that our bodies will decay and eventually fail us. Still others are enticed to look to money and riches rather than God as their ultimate provider.

It’s a delusion, though, says Jeremiah, to think even for a nanosecond that we can boast in an agile mind, a healthy body, or a fat portfolio. Where, then, are we to place our confidence? The prophet’s answer is clear: we are to place our trust in God Himself.

We can trust God because He is a God of justice. He rules in equity, He deals in truth, and He is not arbitrary in what He does. We can have full assurance that His actions are always in keeping with His character.

We can trust God because He is characterized by His steadfast covenant love for His people—a love made known to us in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. And because of the depth of the Father’s love for us, we are “called children of God” (1 John 3:1)! Therefore, we are to take refuge in His righteousness, not our own. Our confidence rests in Jesus, who fulfilled the Father’s will so that we may know Him and love Him as our Creator and Sustainer, as our Savior and King.

A biblical worldview does not denigrate people’s aspirations in the pursuit of wisdom, the exercise of physical prowess, or the ability to earn. But it does stand against the idea that our identity, satisfaction, or salvation can successfully be based on any of these things. There is still a glory that outshines these lesser lights. Our lives should proclaim purposefully, graciously, and straightforwardly that God created us to give Him glory by our walking humbly before Him and enjoying Him into eternity. Where is your confidence for today, for tomorrow, and forever? What do you look to to get you through difficult days? Let it be the loving, just, righteous Lord of all, and know that as you trust Him, He delights in you.

Questions for Thought

How is God calling me to think differently?

How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?

What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?

Further Reading

Galatians 6:12-16

Topics: Character of God Humility Materialism

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

Scriptures, Lessons, News and Links to help you survive.