Tag Archives: Charles Stanley

In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – Faith: A Fixed Focus

 

Genesis 39:1-20

Abiding in God’s will requires a steady, trust-filled focus upon Him. The life of Joseph is a good example.

Joseph’s brothers hated him so much that they sold him to a caravan on its way to Egypt. There, he became the slave of Potiphar, captain of Pharaoh’s guard. Despite all of his misfortune, Joseph performed his duties with excellence and as a result was promoted to oversee Potiphar’s household. Throughout it all, Joseph kept his gaze centered on the Lord.

Focus helps us choose godliness over temptation. Potiphar’s wife attempted to seduce Joseph, but he rejected her advances. When he refused to sin against God (Gen. 39:9), she falsely accused him, and her lies were believed. Ignoring Joseph’s record of hard work and faithful service, Potiphar imprisoned him. Had we been in Joseph’s place, we might at this point be asking our heavenly Father why this happened. However, Joseph endured and continued believing God had neither abandoned him nor lost control of the situation.

In stressful times, we discover how much we really trust the Lord. If doubt about His promises takes root in our thinking, it can lead us off His chosen path. But with steady belief, we can recognize God’s presence and persevere wherever we are.

Bible in One Year: Deuteronomy 12-14

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – Trust God in Troubling Times

 

Psalm 46

If you listen to the news, no doubt you’ve heard scary stories of political upheaval, global threats, and natural or man-made catastrophes. Although people around you may be fearful and stressed, there is no reason a child of God should feel this way. For Christians, the Lord is a refuge and very present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1).

While today’s passage describes a variety of disasters, the writer’s intention was certainly not to cause fear. Rather, these words are a reminder of our Father’s supremacy over everything that happens, His protection of His people, and the ultimate victory that results in His kingdom’s rule on earth. In light of this, we are told to let go of worry and efforts to protect ourselves—and instead trust Him. Our comfort and security are found not in frantically running around, trying to make sure we are safe, but in knowing God. Whatever trouble we experience, He is sufficient to help us through it.

The key to courageously facing the future is confidence in the Lord. He’s your shelter, strength, and help in trouble. To increase your trust in Him, read through the psalms, looking for words and phrases that affirm His protection, steadfastness, and care.

Bible in One Year: Deuteronomy 9-11

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – Passionate Obedience

 

Acts 5:17-42

Yesterday, we studied passionate obedience and how it develops over time. The apostles reached the pinnacle of submission. Without being compelled by fear or the hope of reward, they faced shame, pain, and death. Why? Because they loved Christ too much to stay quiet.

People who receive salvation and then sit back, content that they’ll go to heaven when they die, have missed the point. Salvation isn’t just about heaven; it also allows us to be used for God’s glory here on earth. He lives through us, expressing His life-changing truth so that we can impact others. The only hindrance is the restriction we set on our own usefulness.

Limitations and passionate obedience can’t coexist. Life might seem easier if we choose when to obey God, but that type of existence won’t ever prove totally satisfying. Instead, we will tend to wonder why the Lord doesn’t use us or bless us more.

Passionate obedience begins with commitment. Our dedication may at first be based on the promised reward, which is acceptable because blessing is part of obedience. But as we mature, we’re likely to experience increasingly difficult challenges relative to our submission. And then our devotion also grows until we, too, can rejoice when we suffer for Jesus’ name.

Bible in One Year: Deuteronomy 6-8

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – A Passion to Obey

 

Romans 6:16-23

A passion to obey God doesn’t come naturally. Salvation may spark love and a desire to please Him, but a passionate fire is built slowly from the timbers of spiritual knowledge, faith, and devotion.

Obedience usually begins with a fear of the consequences of disobeying. That is, newer believers can at least enjoy the safety of avoiding repercussions until they develop better reasons to follow God. Thankfully, as we mature and build a scriptural foundation, fear is replaced by both recognition of God’s sovereignty and submission to His wisdom.

Over time, following the Lord becomes less about consequences for disobeying and more about blessings for obeying. Once we taste His goodness, we learn that obedience and God’s best are natural partners—good derives from following divine commands, while suffering results when we demand our own way. This irrevocable principle plays out in the Bible as well as in day-to-day life, and the more we observe it, the more we realize the Lord’s will is the wisest choice.

All the promised blessings in the world cannot make a believer follow God into some frightening places. But that’s where love for our Father comes in, as it compels us toward obedience no matter what is at stake.

Bible in One Year: Deuteronomy 3-5

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Sunday Reflection: Trust in the Lord

 

To get the most out of this devotion, set aside time to read the Scripture referenced throughout.

In looking back at your Christian journey so far, when did you experience the most spiritual growth? For many of us, it was during seasons of great discomfort. Jesus tells us we will encounter difficulties in the world (John 16:33), but that doesn’t mean we should just go about our life with resignation, waiting for something awful to happen.

Instead, we should try to think of waiting as an act of endurance—something that makes us more like Christ. And yet endurance looks different for each of us. Some people may become more active in serving their community, while others need to shift their focus inward—increasing in prayer, seeking wise counsel, and more consciously creating practices of giving thanks. Whatever it is, let us be encouraged to “run … the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus” (Heb. 12:1-2).

THINK ABOUT IT
• Think about your seasons of greatest spiritual growth— or even the experience of coming to faith in Jesus. Was there a specific change or important occurrence in your life? Reflecting like this might help you identify the way God works—and perhaps see your circumstances differently, too.

Bible in One Year: Deuteronomy 1-2

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Bigger God, Smaller Problems

 

Jeremiah 32:17-22

No one enjoys illness, conflicts, or difficulties. Such stressors tend to demand attention and drain energy, narrowing our focus until our troubles become larger and all else is pushed to the side. What we need at such times is a glimpse of the greatness and majesty of the Lord. Looking at Him helps us see our problems from the proper perspective.

During the captivity, when Jeremiah was confined in the guard house and Jerusalem was about to fall into enemy hands, the Lord’s promised restoration of the land seemed far away, if not impossible. But Jeremiah turned his eyes to God. He remembered the Lord’s great power, unfailing love, assurances to Israel, and omniscience about everything taking place.

The good news is that the words of Jeremiah’s prayer to the Lord—“Nothing is too difficult for You” (Jer. 32:17)—are still true today. Although we may want our difficulties resolved immediately, what we really need is a bigger vision of God, not fewer problems. The larger and more accurate our understanding of the Lord is, the smaller our troubles will seem. Even better, our confidence in His ability to handle our trials will increase.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 33-36

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – When We Don’t Understand

 

Job 23

Starting at a very early age, children will repeatedly ask their parents the question Why? And this desire for reasons isn’t something we outgrow. As adults, especially during dark times when we cannot figure out what the Lord is doing, we tend to think, If I could just know whythen it would be easier to bear.

In his extreme suffering, Job experienced pain and frustration at God’s silence. He longed to present his case and hear what the Lord had to say. But when God did not immediately respond, Job nevertheless clung to Him and relied upon what he knew to be true: “He knows the way I take; when He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).

Like Job, we should channel our emotions and responses through the truth of God’s Word. Otherwise, we might be tempted to doubt our Father’s goodness and love, since they aren’t readily visible in times of hardship. But if we trust in what the Scriptures reveal about God’s character and ways, we can endure affliction faithfully, whether or not He ever explains why. After all, God never guaranteed us answers during our time on earth, but He did promise to be with us.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 31-32

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – The Power of Consistency

 

Daniel 6

We live in a noncommittal world, where perseverance is all too rare. If a job is difficult or boring, people often think, Why not find another one? Or when a marriage becomes unhappy, many wonder, Should I be with someone else?

Sadly, this mindset is also found among believers. At the first sign of conflict, some Christians hop to another church instead of working through difficulties with their local body of believers. And when it comes to our personal walk of faith, many of us struggle to maintain a consistent quiet time with the Lord.

Daniel was a man of steadfast loyalty. Not even the awareness that he could be killed interfered with his practice of praying three times a day. Such commitment to the Lord was noted by others. Jealous officers and governors used Daniel’s consistency to trap him, but the king made a remarkable statement: “Your God whom you constantly serve will Himself deliver you” (Dan. 6:16). Apparently, he believed Daniel’s devotion would be the key to the young man’s deliverance

Daniel’s victory in the lion’s den led to great influence, as it inspired the king’s decree to worship the Lord. Have you considered that the Lord was able to use him because of his unwavering obedience and worship? Imagine what God can do with you when you also commit yourself to Him.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 28-30

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – The Influence of Our Convictions

 

Daniel 1

Although our circles of influence vary in size, we all have the power to affect people at home, in church, or in the world. The fact is, our life is always on display, whether we’re aware of it or not.

Daniel didn’t set out to impress others, but his convictions had an effect on everyone who came in contact with him— from lowly servants to kings of empires. He clung to the truth of the Scriptures. When he was taken to Babylon’s royal court, he “made up his mind” not to defile himself with the king’s food (Dan. 1:8), because he knew that eating meat offered to idols was forbidden by the Mosaic law.

The important thing to notice is that Daniel’s convictions, not his environment, determined his behavior. One can always find some reason to give in, but being sure of our beliefs ahead of time can help us stand firm in obedience to God. Although the world may mock our values, people actually lose respect for us when we waffle and yield to temptation. What’s worse, our witness for Christ is damaged.

Conviction about God’s truth is like an anchor holding you steady in the waves of temptation and the winds of opinion. Don’t underestimate your obedience to the Lord—it can powerfully influence others.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 26-27

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – The Fruitful Giver

 

2 Corinthians 9:6-15

Have you ever had the chance to visit Israel? There is a stark contrast between the Jordan River and the Dead Sea. The banks of the Jordan are surrounded by trees and greenery, but very little grows in the vicinity of the Dead Sea because there’s no outlet—water can only evaporate. This process leaves salt minerals behind and makes the water so salty that it’s unfit to nourish the land, which is dry and barren.

Christians are to be like rivers, not stagnant lakes. The blessings God gives us are to be shared instead of hoarded. This applies to every area of life, including our financial resources. As God’s provision flows in to bless us, He wants us to extend the blessing to those who are in need. The result is a fruitful life centered on glorifying the Lord and building His kingdom.

We never have to fear that we will run out of resources, because the Lord promises to take care of us (Matt. 6:31-33). Believers can trust Him to provide both the means to live and enough extra so we can be generous with others. Best of all, God will increase our righteousness and use us to supply the needs of fellow believers, who will thank and glorify God because of our obedience (2 Corinthians 9:10-13).

Bible in One Year: Numbers 23-25

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – God’s Guidance for Finances

 

Malachi 3:7-12

When God created the heavens and earth, He carried out His plan with purpose. Nothing was haphazard, late, or uncertain. The same could be said regarding His plans for each of His children. Every aspect of our life, including our finances, is under His watchful eye and providential care. But despite His perfect record of faithfulness, money is one of the most difficult things for us to entrust to Him. We foolishly think that we can do a better job of handling our money than the omniscient, all-powerful God.

In Malachi’s time, the Jews had stopped trusting the Lord. One indication of the people’s distrust was their failure to give the tithes required by biblical law. God accused them of robbing Him, and they were suffering financial hardship as a result.

Sometimes Christians find that believing the Lord for salvation is easy, and yet they doubt He’ll keep His promise when it comes to money. Our willingness to give God the first portion of our income or resources is a test of our trust in Him. And the truth is, we can fully rely on Him because He promises to meet all of our needs (Phil. 4:19). Take a step of obedience today, and discover how faithful God is.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 20-22

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Sunday Reflection: Turning to God in Times of Frustration

 

To get the most out of this devotion, set aside time to read the Scripture referenced throughout.

In the book of Hebrews, we find encouragement for God’s people to persevere and draw near to Him. (See Heb. 10:19-22.) When facing all kinds of difficulties, many of us have a tendency to power through in our own strength. But the reality is, that’s never effective—at least not for long. Instead, God wants us to come closer to Him.

All too often, our frustrations about life impact our ability to submit to God and be intimately connected with Him. Trusting our Father requires humility—we must remember He alone knows all. But we also need to keep in mind that He loves us more than anyone can grasp.

When we stay focused on Jesus, we can take comfort in knowing He’ll lead us through the hard places (Isa. 41:10-13). As you continue walking with Him, trust that He already knows what will happen in your life—and that regardless of what lies ahead, He will never leave you.

THINK ABOUT IT
• This week, set aside a few minutes of extra prayer time to ask God to reveal His care for you—especially any situations or relationships where you’ve possibly overlooked His presence. You may be surprised just how active He is in your daily life.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 17-19

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Our Amazing Bible

 

Psalm 119:97-104

We often take our Bibles for granted. But have you ever considered how astounding it is that the God of the universe cared enough about humanity to give us His written Word so we could know Him? The Scriptures record God’s thoughts, words, desires, and purposes as well as His interventions in human history. The climax of His revelation is encompassed in the coming of His Son as our Savior, His plan of redemption, and Christ’s future return as King of Kings.

Amazingly, the Scriptures were compiled from the writings of more than three dozen people, recorded over period of about 1,400 years! Each book of the Bible reflects its human author’s personality, background, and vocabulary, yet every word was inspired as God Himself spoke through each writer (2 Peter 1:20-21). What’s more, though written by multiple hands over multiple centuries, Scripture is a cohesive compilation: Its message is consistent in truth, purpose, and prophecy.

Without God’s Word, we would know very little about Him and nothing about redemption. So never take your Bible for granted. Each time you open it, you are hearing God’s voice speaking directly to you. Take advantage of this privilege and read it regularly.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 14-16

 

 

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In Touch Ministries; Charles Stanley – Accepting God’s Solution

 

2 Chronicles 20:14-25

When we pray about a matter that is very important to us, it’s easy to begin telling the Lord how to answer our request. We’ve all done this, haven’t we? We start out asking God for help, but as our emotions enter in, we become more passionate about explaining what we want Him to do about it.

God promises to answer prayer (Mark 11:24), but sometimes His answers don’t satisfy us. Oftentimes we want relief from pain and difficulty rather than an extra measure of grace to endure in a manner that glorifies God.

King Jehoshaphat may have expected the Lord to answer his prayer by giving the army supernatural strength to win the battle, but God’s solution was entirely unexpected. His method was to send the choir out singing praises. Then God took care of the enemy without any help from Judah’s soldiers.

Instead of dictating a solution, Jehoshaphat trusted God to answer the prayer as He saw fit. And we should do likewise. Prayer is an opportunity to bring our concerns to the Lord and trust that He will answer in a way that brings glory to Him, not to us.

Bible in One Year: Numbers 11-13

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Sunday Reflection: A Light to Your Path

 

To get the most out of this devotion, set aside time to read the Scripture referenced throughout.

Electric lamps weren’t invented until the 1800s, so traveling in the first century at night would have been precarious. To navigate in the darkness, travelers carried lanterns to illuminate the area just ahead of them, but their view was still limited. This is what the psalmist was referring to when he said, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105).

Imagine just how deep darkness is without any surrounding light from nearby buildings or the city. It’s dangerous. A rural community like the one listening to Jesus as He preached the Sermon on the Mount would have understood the sense of direction and bearing a city glowing in the distance can offer. Jesus calls His followers to be a light in the world, a shining city on a hill (Matt. 5:14). Remember, in situations of increasing darkness, light becomes more brilliant.

Think about it
• When you find yourself seeking direction in your spiritual life, do you think of God’s Word as a light unto your feet? What helps you find your bearings?

  •  What are some ways you can be a light in your family, neighborhood, or workplace?

Bible in One Year: 1 Timothy 1-3

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Ending Habitual Sin

 

Ephesians 6:10-17

In the old testament, a stronghold was a place of safety and protection from enemy attack. We frequently see the term used to describe God in David’s writings—as, for example, in Psalm 18:2, Psalm 31:2, and Psalm 59:16.

A stronghold is also useful to the devil, but the kind he builds isn’t for refuge. (See 2 Corinthians 10:4.) Rather, it’s a prison to keep us locked in habitual sin—a place of constant deception and temptation.

For a believer, breaking out of this kind of stronghold may be difficult, but it’s not impossible. That’s because Christ has set us free from the dominion of sin, and God has provided spiritual armor for our protection. So why do we still struggle with habitual sin? The reason is because we receive temporary comfort, pleasure, and satisfaction from these ingrained patterns of behavior. However, any “benefit” is deceptive, and guilt and shame will eventually follow.

Just thinking about giving up a sinful habit brings some people to the brink of despair, even though they long to be free. But the Holy Spirit’s power is enough to enable any believer to walk out of Satan’s stranglehold and into God’s stronghold.

Bible in One Year: 2 Thessalonians 1-3

 

 

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Charles Stanley – The Changing Battle of Faith

 

James 1:2-8

Have you ever felt as if your Christian life swings back and forth like a pendulum between faith and doubt? This is a fairly common problem, especially in trying situations. Although you know what God’s Word says, your feelings may tell you something different.

The question is not if we’ll experience this, but when—and how long we’ll remain on one side or the other. Three factors can influence whether we lean toward faith or doubt: the state of our faith at the time of the trial; our knowledge and understanding of God; and our experience with failure or success in past trials.

To grow in faith, it is important that we …

  • Trust in God’s divine nature and wisdom.
    • View difficulties from a scriptural perspective.
    • Set our mind on God’s promises.
    • Reflect on the Lord’s past faithfulness, both in Scripture and personal experience.

We can stabilize our faith by choosing to trust God rather than circumstances or human wisdom. Our perspective of the world is limited and unreliable, but the truth of Scripture stands firm. You can know with certainty that the Lord is faithful and will see you through every situation.

Bible in One Year: 1 Thessalonians 1-5

 

 

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Charles Stanley – Confidence Amidst Distress

Psalm 46

It seems as if the world today is constantly changing. This might cause us to be filled with anxiety unless we remember that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1). Disturbing times should remind us we are only pilgrims on this earth. Our citizenship is in a heavenly kingdom that can never be shaken.

The commotion of this current world is nothing unprecedented. I remember 1944 being a year of tremendous turmoil in our country because of World War II. Many people anxiously listened to the evening news, fearing the death of loved ones as battles in various locations were reported.

When times are frightening and uncertain—whether personally, nationally, or globally—the place to find comfort and assurance is the Bible, especially the book of Psalms. Scripture helps us look at circumstances from God’s perspective. That reassures us of His love and care for us and lifts our eyes to a higher hope than anything this world can offer.

We all want to find peace, and the first step is to cease striving (Psalm 46:10). Remember that the Lord is always with you, and know that His kingdom is coming.

Bible in One Year: Colossians 1-4

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Charles Stanley – Working in God’s Kingdom

1 Corinthians 12:4-11
Though we may gather at church every week, Christians shouldn’t remain within its four walls. God has chosen to work through His body of believers to accomplish His gospel mission on earth. To borrow a biblical metaphor, we are the workers sent out to cultivate and harvest His fields (Matt. 9:36-38). No one is a bystander in God’s kingdom.
The Lord has given every single believer a spiritual gift to aid in the work of His kingdom. These aren’t natural abilities but instead are the Holy Spirit’s power manifested through us—a special enablement that helps us serve according to His plan.
Paul reminds us that we are the Lord’s “workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Eph. 2:10). We should always remember that God’s power works through our gifts so there is no reason to shy away from the opportunities He opens up for us, even if they seem daunting.
Don’t spend your life just sitting in a pew! Experience the joy of participating in God’s kingdom work. The Holy Spirit will empower you to obey the Lord in whatever He calls you to do.
Bible in One Year: Philippians 1-4

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Charles Stanley –Learning Obedience Through Suffering

 

Hebrews 5:7-9

Have you ever wondered why Jesus had to suffer so much when He came to earth as a man? One might expect that the Son of God should have a comfortable life and a quick and easy death. After all, wouldn’t His blood have paid for our sins whether it was shed painlessly or with great agony?

Jesus took on human flesh so that He could die and pay the horrendous price of mankind’s iniquity. The pain He experienced reflects the great consequences of human transgression. In fact, all suffering originates from the entrance of sin into the world through Adam and Eve. Therefore, our Savior also had to suffer in order to redeem us from sin and its far-reaching damage.

The holy Son of God, who had never yielded to sin, struggled with the prospect of being the sin bearer on the cross. Yet Jesus submitted and “learned obedience from the things which He suffered” (Heb. 5:8). And as the source of eternal salvation, He faithfully completed God’s plan of redemption.

When it’s challenging for us to obey the Lord, we need the help of the One who suffered on our behalf. If His difficult obedience resulted in such a great benefit, surely ours has purpose as well.

Bible in One Year: Ephesians 4-6

 

 

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