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Our Daily Bread Daily Devotional for 2023


Friday, June 30, 2023

Parting Words

Bible in a Year: Job 17–19, Acts 10:1–23

The Lord is not slow...He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish.
2 Peter 3:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Samuel 12:1, 19–24

As he neared the end of his life, John M. Perkins had a message for the people he would leave behind. Perkins, known for advocating racial reconciliation, said, “Repentance is the only way back to God. Unless you repent, you will all perish.”

These words mirror the language of Jesus and many other people in the Bible. Christ said, “Unless you repent, you too will all...More

Thursday, June 29, 2023

The Gospel in Unexpected Places

Bible in a Year: Job 14–16, Acts 9:22–43

Many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him.
Mark 2:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: Mark 2:13–17

Recently, I found myself someplace I’d seen in movies and on TV more times than I could count: Hollywood, California. There, in the foothills of Los Angeles, those enormous white letters marched proudly across that famous hillside as I viewed them from my hotel window.

Then I noticed something else: down to the left was a prominent cross. I’d never seen that in a movie. And the moment I left my hotel room,...More

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

When You’re Lonely

Bible in a Year: Job 11–13, Acts 9:1–21

You are with me.
Psalm 23:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 23

At 7 p.m., Hui-Liang was in his kitchen, eating rice and leftover fish balls. The Chua family in the apartment next door was having dinner too, and their laughter and conversation cut through the silence of Hui-Liang’s unit, where he had lived alone since his wife died. He’d learned to live with loneliness; over the years, its stabbing pain had become a dull ache. But tonight, the sight of the one bowl and pair of chopsticks on his table pierced him...More

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Heaping Coals on Enemies

Bible in a Year: Job 8–10, Acts 8:26–40

Give [your enemy] food to eat...In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.
Proverbs 25:21–22

Today's Scripture & Insight: Proverbs 25:18–23

Dan endured daily beatings from the same prison guard. He felt compelled by Jesus to love this man, so one morning, before the beating was about to begin, Dan said, “Sir, if I’m going to see you every day for the rest of my life, let’s become friends.” The guard said, “No sir. We can never be friends.” Dan insisted and reached out his hand.

The guard...More

Monday, June 26, 2023

Easy Money

Bible in a Year: Job 5–7, Acts 8:1–25

Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Matthew 6:21

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Kings 5:20–27

In the late 1700s, a young man discovered a mysterious depression on Nova Scotia’s Oak Island. Guessing that pirates—perhaps even Captain Kidd himself—had buried treasure there, he and a couple of companions started digging. They never found any treasure, but the rumor took on a life of its own. Over the centuries, others continued digging at the site—expending a great amount of time and expense. The hole is now...More

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Remembering the Sacrifice

Bible in a Year: Job 3–4, Acts 7:44–60

Whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
1 Corinthians 11:26

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Corinthians 11:23–28

Following the Sunday morning worship service, my Moscow host took me to lunch at a restaurant outside the Kremlin. Upon arrival, we noticed a line of newlywed couples in wedding garb approaching the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier outside the Kremlin wall. The happiness of their wedding day intentionally included remembering the sacrifices others had made to help make...More

Saturday, June 24, 2023

He Makes Us New

Bible in a Year: Job 1–2, Acts 7:22–43

Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.
John 6:12

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 6:5–13

As a traveling executive, Shawn Seipler wrestled with an odd question. What happens to leftover soap in hotel rooms? Thrown out as trash for landfills, millions of soap bars could instead find new life, Seipler believed. So he launched Clean the World, a recycling venture that has helped more than eight thousand hotels, cruise lines, and resorts turn millions of pounds of discarded soap into sterilized, newly molded...More

Friday, June 23, 2023

God’s Mighty Power

Bible in a Year: Esther 9–10, Acts 7:1–21

When the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord...[they] put their trust in him.
Exodus 14:31

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 14:21–23, 26–31

The seemingly impossible happened when hurricane-force winds changed the flow of the mighty Mississippi River. In August 2021, Hurricane Ida came ashore on the coast of Louisiana, and the astonishing result was a “negative flow,” meaning water actually flowed upriver for several hours.

Experts estimate that over its life cycle a hurricane can expend energy...More

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Faith Comes from Hearing

Bible in a Year: Esther 6–8, Acts 6

Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.
Romans 10:17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 10:8–17

When Pastor Bob suffered an injury that affected his voice, he entered fifteen years of crisis and depression. What, he wondered, does a pastor do who can’t talk? He struggled with this question, pouring out his grief and confusion to God. He reflected, “I only knew one thing to do—to go after the Word of God.” As he spent time reading the Bible, his love for God grew: “I’ve...More

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Step by Step

Bible in a Year: Esther 3–5, Acts 5:22–42

How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!
Psalm 133:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Peter 4:7–11

A dozen teams, each including three people standing shoulder to shoulder, prepared for the four-legged race. Each outside person bound to the person in the middle by colorful rags at their ankles and knees, every trio locked their eyes on the finish line. When the whistle blew, the teams lunged forward. Most of them fell and struggled to regain their footing. A few groups chose to hop instead of walk....More

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

True Religion

Bible in a Year: Esther 1–2, Acts 5:1–21

Religion that God our Father accepts...is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress.
James 1:27

Today's Scripture & Insight: James 1:19–27

The summer after my sophomore year of college, a classmate died unexpectedly. I’d seen him just a few days prior and he looked fine. My classmates and I were young and in what we thought was the prime of our lives, having just become sisters and brothers after pledging our respective sorority and fraternity.

But what I remember most about my classmate’s death...More

Monday, June 19, 2023

Live in Freedom

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 12–13, Acts 4:23–37

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.
Galatians 5:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Galatians 5:1–7, 13–15

In Texas, where I grew up, there were festive parades and picnics in Black communities every June 19. It wasn’t until I was a teenager that I learned the heartbreaking significance of Juneteenth (a word combining “June” and “nineteenth”) celebrations. Juneteenth commemorates the day in 1865 when enslaved people in Texas learned that President Abraham Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation...More

Sunday, June 18, 2023

Fixing Go-Karts

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 10–11, Acts 4:1–22

I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name.
Ephesians 3:14–15

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ephesians 3:12–19

The garage of my childhood home holds many memories. On Saturday mornings, my dad would roll our car down the driveway so we had room to work—with my favorite project being a broken go-kart we’d found. On that garage floor, we gave it new wheels, attached a sporty, plastic windshield, and—with Dad on the street looking out for traffic—I would race down the...More

Saturday, June 17, 2023

The Power of Voice

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 7–9, Acts 3

I have put my words in your mouth.
Jeremiah 1:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: Jeremiah 1:4–9

The most powerful orators in history are often those leaders who’ve used their voices to bring about positive change. Consider Frederick Douglass, whose speeches on abolition and liberty spurred a movement that helped lead to the end of slavery in the United States. What if he’d chosen to be silent? We all possess the capacity to use our voice to inspire and help others, but the fear of speaking out can be paralyzing. In the moments when...More

Saturday, June 17, 2023

The Power of Voice

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 7–9, Acts 3

I have put my words in your mouth.
Jeremiah 1:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: Jeremiah 1:4–9

The most powerful orators in history are often those leaders who’ve used their voices to bring about positive change. Consider Frederick Douglass, whose speeches on abolition and liberty spurred a movement that helped lead to the end of slavery in the United States. What if he’d chosen to be silent? We all possess the capacity to use our voice to inspire and help others, but the fear of speaking out can be paralyzing. In the moments when...More

Friday, June 16, 2023

God’s Unfailing Memory

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 4–6, Acts 2:22–47

I will not forget you!
Isaiah 49:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 49:13–16

A man owned more than $400 million in bitcoin, but he couldn’t access a cent of it. He lost the password for the device storing his funds, and disaster loomed: after ten password attempts, the device would self-destruct. A fortune lost forever. For a decade, the man had agonized, desperately trying to recall the password to his life-altering investment. He tried eight passwords and failed eight times. In 2021, he lamented that he had just two...More

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Putting the Pieces Together

Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 1–3, Acts 2:1–21

He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Philippians 1:3–6

While our family quarantined due to the global pandemic, we took on an ambitious project—an eighteen-thousand-piece puzzle! Even though we worked on it almost daily, often we felt like we weren’t making much progress. Five months after we began, we finally celebrated adding the final piece to the nine-by-six-foot puzzle that covered our dining room...More

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Texts, Troubles, and Triumphs

Bible in a Year: Ezra 9–10, Acts 1

We do not belong to those who shrink back...but to those who have faith and are saved.
Hebrews 10:39

Today's Scripture & Insight: Hebrews 11:32, 35–40

Jimmy hadn’t allowed the reality of social unrest, danger, and discomfort to keep him from traveling to one of the poorest countries in the world to encourage ministry couples. The steady stream of text messages to our team back home revealed the challenges he encountered. “Okay, boys, activate the prayer line. We’ve gone ten miles in the last two hours. . . . Car has overheated a...More

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

It’s Empty Now

Bible in a Year: Ezra 6–8, John 21

How deserted lies the city, once so full of people!
Lamentations 1:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Lamentations 1:1, 12–13, 16–20

My brothers and our families spent the day moving our parents’ belongings from our childhood home. Late in the afternoon, we went back for one last pickup and, knowing this would be our final time in our family home, posed for a picture on the back porch. I was fighting tears when my mom turned to me and said, “It’s all empty now.” That pushed me over the edge. The house that holds fifty-four years...More

Monday, June 12, 2023

Freeing Obedience

Bible in a Year: Ezra 3–5, John 20

You are free...but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Genesis 2:16–17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 2:15–25

The look on the young teen’s face reflected angst and shame. Heading into the 2022 Winter Olympics, her success as a figure skater was unparalleled—a string of championships had made her a lock to win a gold medal. But then a test result revealed a banned substance in her system. With the immense weight of expectations and condemnation pressing down on her, she fell multiple times...More

Sunday, June 11, 2023

God’s Garden

Bible in a Year: Ezra 1–2, John 19:23–42

He has given us new birth into a living hope.
1 Peter 1:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Peter 1:17–25

A reminder of the beauty and brevity of life grows outside my front door. Last spring, my wife planted moonflower vines, so named because of their large and round white blooms that resemble a full moon. Each flower opens for one night and then withers in the bright sun the following morning, never to bloom again. But the plant is prolific, and every evening presents a fresh parade of flowers. We love watching it as we come and...More

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Leap of Faith

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 34–36, John 19:1–22

In all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Proverbs 3:5–8

As I prepared to ride a zip line from the highest point of a rainforest on the Caribbean Island of St. Lucia, fear welled up inside me. Seconds before I jumped from the platform, thoughts of everything that could go wrong filled my mind. But with all the courage I could muster (and few options for turning back), I released. Dropping from the pinnacle of the forest, I whizzed through the lush...More

Friday, June 9, 2023

Our Place of Safety

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 32–33, John 18:19–40

The Lord watches over you—the Lord is your shade at your right hand.
Psalm 121:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 121

Retired teacher Debbie Stephens Browder is on a mission to convince as many people as possible to plant trees. The reason? Heat. Extreme heat in the United States is the number one weather-related cause of death. In response, she says, “I’m starting with trees.” The canopy of heat protection that trees provide is one significant way to protect communities. “It’s life or death. It’s not...More

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Strengthened through Trials

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 30–31, John 18:1–18

We know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.
Romans 5:3–4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 5:1–5

The memories flooded back when I rustled through some envelopes and glimpsed a sticker that said, “I’ve had an eye test.” In my mind I saw my four-year-old son proudly wearing the sticker after enduring stinging eyedrops. Because of weak eye muscles, he had to wear a patch for hours each day over his strong eye—thereby forcing the weaker eye to develop. He also...More

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

A Loving Warning

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 28–29, John 17

If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you.
Matthew 18:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 18:15–20

In 2010, a tsunami struck the Indonesian island of Sumatra, killing more than four hundred people. But the deaths could have been prevented or minimized had the tsunami warning system been working properly. The tsunami detection networks (buoys) had become detached and drifted away.

Jesus said His disciples had a responsibility to warn fellow disciples of things that...More

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Places of the Heart

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 25–27, John 16

You shall not make for yourself an image.
Exodus 20:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 20:1–6

Here are some vacation tips: The next time you’re traveling through Middleton, Wisconsin, you might want to visit the National Mustard Museum. For those of us who feel that one mustard is plenty, this place amazes, featuring 6,090 different mustards from around the world. In McLean, Texas, you might be surprised to run across the Barbed Wire Museum—or more surprised there is such a passion for, well . . ....More

Monday, June 5, 2023


Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 23–24, John 15

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.
Ecclesiastes 3:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ecclesiastes 3:1–14

I recently came across a helpful word: wintering. Just as winter is a time of slowing down in much of the natural world, author Katherine May uses this word to describe our need to rest and recuperate during life’s “cold” seasons. I found the analogy helpful after losing my father to cancer, which sapped me of energy for months. Resentful of this forced slowing down, I...More

Sunday, June 4, 2023

Courage to Stand for Jesus

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 21–22, John 14

Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
Matthew 10:38

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 13:36–38; 21:18–19

In ad 155, the early church father Polycarp was threatened with death by fire for his faith in Christ. He replied, “For eighty and six years I have been his servant, and he has done me no wrong. And how can I now blaspheme my king who saved me?” Polycarp’s response can be an inspiration for us when we face extreme trial because of our faith in Jesus, our King.

Just hours...More

Saturday, June 3, 2023

Within God’s Reach

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 19–20, John 13:21–38

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
Psalm 139:7

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 139:1–12

After an officer searched me, I stepped into the county jail, signed the visitor’s log, and sat in the crowded lobby. I prayed silently, watching adults fidgeting and sighing while young children complained about the wait. Over an hour later, an armed guard called a list of names including mine. He led my group into a room and motioned us to our assigned chairs. When my stepson sat in the...More

Friday, June 2, 2023

Uniting Nations

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 17–18, John 13:1–20

He will judge between the nations.
Isaiah 2:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 2:1–5

The longest international border in the world is shared by the United States and Canada, covering an incredible 5,525 miles of land and water. Workers regularly cut down ten feet of trees on both sides of the boundary to make the border line unmistakable. This lengthy ribbon of cleared land, called “the Slash,” is dotted by more than eight thousand stone markers so visitors always know where the dividing line...More

Thursday, June 1, 2023

In God’s Hands

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 15–16, John 12:27–50

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:24

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Thessalonians 5:12–28

Turning eighteen ushered in a new era in my daughter’s life: legally an adult, she now had the right to vote in future elections and would soon embark on life after graduating from high school. This shift had instilled in me a sense of urgency—I would have precious little time with her under my roof to impart to her the wisdom she’d need to face the world on her own: how to manage...More

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Sorrow and Joy

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 13–14, John 12:1–26

No one could distinguish the sound of the shouts of joy from the sound of weeping.
Ezra 3:13

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ezra 3:8–13

Angela’s family reeled with sorrow as they experienced three bereavements in just four weeks. After the one involving the sudden death of their nephew, Angela and her two sisters gathered around the kitchen table for three days, only leaving to buy an urn, get takeout, and attend the funeral. As they wept over his death, they also rejoiced over the ultrasound photos of the new life...More

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

The God Who Restores

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 10–12, John 11:30–57

I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.
Ezekiel 37:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ezekiel 37:4–14

On November 4, 1966, a disastrous flood swept through Florence, Italy, submerging Giorgio Vasari’s renowned work of art The Last Supper under a pool of mud, water, and heating oil for more than twelve hours. With its paint softened and its wooden frame significantly damaged, many believed that the piece was beyond repair. However, after a tedious fifty-year conservation effort, experts and volunteers...More

Monday, May 29, 2023

Hope That Holds

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 7–9, John 11:1–29

I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.
Habakkuk 3:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Habakkuk 3:11–19

“I know Daddy’s coming home because he sent me flowers.” Those were my seven-year-old sister’s words to our mother when Dad was missing in action during wartime. Before Dad left for his mission, he preordered flowers for my sister’s birthday, and they arrived while he was missing. But she was right: Dad did come home—after a harrowing combat situation. And decades later, she still keeps...More

Sunday, May 28, 2023

What Only the Spirit Can Do

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 4–6, John 10:24–42

All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
Acts 2:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 2:1–13

During the discussion of a book on the Holy Spirit written by a ninety-four-year-old German theologian named Jürgen Moltmann, an interviewer asked him: “How do you activate the Holy Spirit? Can you take a pill? Do the pharmaceutical companies [deliver the Spirit]?” Moltmann’s bushy eyebrows shot up. Shaking his head, he grinned, answering in accented...More

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Small But Great

Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 1–3, John 10:1–23

Who dares despise the day of small things?
Zechariah 4:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: Zechariah 4:4–10

Will I make the Olympics? The college swimmer worried her speed was too slow. But when math professor Ken Ono studied her swim techniques, he saw how to improve her time by six full seconds—a substantial difference at that level of competition. Attaching sensors to the swimmer’s back, he didn’t identify major changes to improve her time. Instead, Ono identified tiny corrective actions that, if applied, could make...More

Friday, May 26, 2023

Jesus Is the Answer

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 28–29, John 9:24–41

Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.
Daniel 3:25

Today's Scripture & Insight: Daniel 3:15–28

The tale is told that after yet another stop on Albert Einstein’s lecture tour, his chauffeur mentioned that he’d heard enough of the speech that he could give it. Einstein suggested they switch places at the next college, as no one there had seen his picture. The chauffer agreed and delivered a fine lecture. Then came the question-and-answer...More

Thursday, May 25, 2023

All for Jesus

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 25–27, John 9:1–23

Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.
Colossians 3:17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Colossians 3:15–24

When Jeff was fourteen, his mom took him to see a famous singer. Like many musicians of his era, B. J. Thomas had gotten caught up in a self-destructive lifestyle while on music tours. But that was before he and his wife were introduced to Jesus. Their lives were radically changed when they became believers in Christ.

On the night of the concert, the singer began...More

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Blessed Routine

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 22–24, John 8:28–59

Without [God], who can eat or find enjoyment?
Ecclesiastes 2:25

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ecclesiastes 2:17–26

Watching the morning crowd pour onto the train, I felt the Monday blues kick in. From the sleepy, grumpy faces of those in the jam-packed cabin, I could tell no one looked forward to going to work. Frowns broke out as some jostled for space and more tried to squeeze in. Here we go again, another mundane day at the office.

Then, it struck me that just a year before, the trains would have been...More

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Not a Dream

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 19–21, John 8:1–27

Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.
Ephesians 5:14

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 12:1–11

It’s like living in a dream you can’t wake up from. People who struggle with what’s sometimes called “derealization” or “depersonalization” often feel like nothing around them is quite real. While those who chronically have this feeling can be diagnosed with a disorder, it’s believed to be a common mental health struggle, especially during stressful times. But sometimes the feeling...More

Monday, May 22, 2023

Tell the Story

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 16–18, John 7:28–53

We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us.
1 John 1:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 John 1:1–4

Robert Todd Lincoln, son of US president Abraham Lincoln, was present for three major events—the death of his own father as well as the assassinations of presidents James Garfield and William McKinley.

But consider that the apostle John was present at four of history’s most crucial events: the last supper of Jesus, Christ’s agony in Gethsemane, His...More

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Our Choices Matter

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 13–15, John 7:1–27

But he refused.
Genesis 39:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 39:1–12

A swimming instructor in New Jersey saw a car sinking into Newark Bay and heard the driver inside screaming “I can’t swim” as his SUV quickly sank into the murky waters. As a crowd watched from shore, Anthony ran to the rocks along the edge, removed his prosthetic leg, and jumped in to rescue the sixty-eight-year-old man and help him safely to shore. Thanks to Anthony’s decisive action, another man was saved.

Our choices...More

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Keep in Touch

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 10–12, John 6:45–71

Pray to your Father.
Matthew 6:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 6:5–9

Madeleine L’Engle made it a habit to call her mother once a week. As her mother moved into her later years, the beloved spiritual writer called more frequently, “just to keep in touch.” In the same way, Madeleine liked her children to call and maintain that connection. Sometimes it was a lengthy conversation filled with significant questions and answers. Other times a call simply making sure the number was still valid was sufficient. As...More

Friday, May 19, 2023

You Are Heard

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 7–9, John 6:22–44

He turned his ear to me.
Psalm 116:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 116:1–7

In the book Physics, Charles Riborg Mann and George Ransom Twiss ask: “When a tree falls in a lonely forest, and no animal is nearby to hear it, does it make a sound?” Over the years, this question has prompted philosophical and scientific discussions about sound, perception, and existence. A definitive answer, however, has yet to emerge.

One night, while feeling lonely and sad about a problem I hadn’t shared with anyone, I...More

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Grandmother Research

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 4–6, John 6:1–21

He will take great delight in you.
Zephaniah 3:17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Zephaniah 3:17–20

Researchers at Emory University used MRI scans to study the brains of grandmothers. They measured empathetic responses to images that included their own grandchild, their own adult child, and one anonymous child. The study showed that grandmothers have a higher empathy toward their own grandchild than even their own adult child. This is attributed to what they call the “cute factor”—their own grandchild being more...More

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

God Remembers Names

Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 1–3, John 5:25–47

Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
Isaiah 43:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 43:1–7

The Sunday after I’d started working as a youth leader at a church and had met several of the young people, I spoke to a teen seated next to her mom. As I greeted the shy girl with a smile, I said her name and asked how she was doing. She lifted her head and her beautiful brown eyes widened. She too smiled and said in a small voice: “You remembered my name.” By simply calling that...More

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Who Am I?

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 24–25, John 5:1–24

To all who did receive him...[Jesus] gave the right to become children of God.
John 1:12

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 1:6–13

In 1859, Joshua Abraham Norton declared himself Emperor of the United States. Norton had made—and lost—his fortune in San Francisco shipping, but he wanted a new identity: America’s first emperor. When the San Francisco Evening Bulletin printed “Emperor” Norton’s announcement, most readers laughed. Norton made pronouncements aimed at correcting society’s ills, printed his own...More

Monday, May 15, 2023

Exploring the Stars

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 22–23, John 4:31–54

Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one.
Isaiah 40:26

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 19:1–6

In 2021, a multination effort led to the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope—deployed nearly a million miles from Earth to better investigate the universe. This marvel will peer into deep space and examine the stars and other celestial wonders.

This is indeed a fascinating astronomical piece of technology, and if everything works, it will...More

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Loving Leadership

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 19–21, John 4:1–30

We dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children.
1 Thessalonians 2:11

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Thessalonians 2:7–12

A viral video of a mama bear trying to get her four energetic little cubs across a busy street brought a knowing smile to my face. It was delightfully relatable to watch her pick up her cubs one-by-one and carry them across the road—only to have the cubs wander back to the other side. After many seemingly frustrating attempts, the mama bear finally corralled all four of her cubs, and...More

Saturday, May 13, 2023

For Love’s Sake

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 17–18, John 3:19–36

Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Romans 12:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 12:9–18

Running a marathon is about pushing yourself, physically and mentally. For one high school runner, however, competing in a cross-country race is all about pushing someone else. In every practice and meet, fourteen-year-old Susan Bergeman pushes older brother, Jeffrey, in his wheelchair. When Jeffrey was twenty-two months old, he went into cardiac arrest—leaving him with severe brain damage and...More

Friday, May 12, 2023

How’s My Driving?

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 15–16, John 3:1–18

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.
James 1:19–20

Today's Scripture & Insight: James 1:19–26

“ARRRGH!” I yelled as the repair truck cut in front of me.

That’s when I saw the message: “How’s My Driving?” And a phone number. I picked up my phone and dialed. A woman asked me why I was calling, and I vented my frustration. She took down the truck’s number. Then she said, wearily, “You...More

Thursday, May 11, 2023

God Sees, Understands, and Cares

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 13–14, John 2

Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.
Psalm 147:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 147:1–5

Sometimes, living with chronic pain and fatigue leads to being isolated at home and feeling alone. I’ve often felt unseen by God and others. During an early morning prayer-walk with my service dog, I struggled with these feelings. I noticed a hot-air balloon in the distance. The people in its basket could enjoy a bird’s-eye view of our quiet neighborhood, but they couldn’t really see me. As I continued...More

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Stolen Gods

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 10–12, John 1:29–51

You have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.
Genesis 32:28

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 31:19–21; 32:22–30

A carved wooden figure—a household god—had been stolen from a woman named Ekuwa, so she reported it to the authorities. Believing they had found the idol, law enforcement officials invited her to identify it. “Is this your god?” they asked. She said sadly, “No, my god is much larger and more beautiful than that.”

People have long tried to give shape to their concept of...More

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Known by God

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 7–9, John 1:1–28

[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...More

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Hunt for Inner Healing

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 1–3, Luke 24:1–35

He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted.
Isaiah 61:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 61:1–3

Always a busy guy, Carson hunted, fished, rode dirt bikes, and skateboarded. He loved everything outdoors. But he was in a motorcycle accident and became paralyzed from the chest down. Soon depression sank in, and he didn’t see much of a future. Then one day some of his buddies got him to go hunting again. For a time he forgot about his injury as he enjoyed the beauty around him. This experience brought him inner healing and...More

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Thankful Hearts

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 21–22, Luke 23:26–56

Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?
Luke 17:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 17:11–19

Hansle Parchment was in a predicament. He caught the bus to the wrong place for his semifinal in the Tokyo Olympics and was left stranded with little hope of getting to the stadium on time. But thankfully he met Trijana Stojkovic, a volunteer helping out at the games. She gave him some money to take a taxi. Parchment made it to the semifinal on time and eventually clinched the gold medal in the 110-meter...More

Friday, May 5, 2023

Grace and Change

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 19–20, Luke 23:1–25

Moses was afraid and thought, “What I did must have become known.”
Exodus 2:14

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 2:11–15

The crime was shocking, and the man who committed it was sentenced to life in prison. In the years that followed, the man—in solitary confinement—began a process of mental and spiritual healing. It led to repentance and a restored relationship with Jesus. These days he’s been allowed limited interactions with other inmates. And, by God’s grace, through his witness some fellow prisoners have...More

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Operating with Prayer

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 16–18, Luke 22:47–71

Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord.
2 Chronicles 20:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Chronicles 20:1–12

When my son needed orthopedic surgery, I was grateful for the doctor who performed the operation. The doctor, who was nearing retirement, assured us he’d helped thousands of people with the same problem. Even so, before the procedure, he prayed and asked God to provide a good outcome. And I’m so grateful He did.

Jehoshaphat, an experienced national leader, prayed too during a crisis. Three nations...More

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Tired Tents

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 14–15, Luke 22:21–46

While we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened.
2 Corinthians 5:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 4:16–5:5

“The tent is tired!” Those were the words of my friend Paul, who pastors a church in Nairobi, Kenya. Since 2015, the congregation has worshiped in a tentlike structure. Now, Paul writes, “Our tent is worn out and it is leaking when it rains.”

My friend’s words about their tent’s structural weaknesses remind us of the apostle Paul’s words regarding the frailty of our human...More

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Life Everlasting

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 12–13, Luke 22:1–20

Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
John 17:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 17:3–12

“Don’t be afraid of death, Winnie,” said Angus Tuck, “be afraid of the unlived life.” That quote from the book-turned-film Tuck Everlasting is made more interesting by the fact that it comes from a character who can’t die. In the story, the Tuck family has become immortal. Young Jesse Tuck, who falls in love with Winnie, begs her to seek immortality too so...More

Monday, May 1, 2023

Seeds of Faith

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 10–11, Luke 21:20–38

Always be prepared to give an answer...for the hope that you have.
1 Peter 3:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Peter 3:8–16

Last spring, the night before our lawn was to be aerated, a violent windstorm blew the seeds off our maple tree in one fell swoop. So when the aerating machine broke up the compacted soil by pulling small “cores” out of the ground, it planted hundreds of maple seeds in my yard. Just two short weeks later, I had the beginnings of a maple forest growing up through my lawn!

As I...More

Sunday, April 30, 2023

Wagging Tails and Tongues

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 8–9, Luke 21:1–19

The words of a gossip are like choice morsels.
Proverbs 18:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Proverbs 18:1–8

The newspaper declared that Pep had taken the life of the cat belonging to the governor’s wife—but he didn’t do it. The only thing he may have been guilty of was chewing the sofa at the governor’s mansion.

Pep was a rambunctious young Labrador retriever owned by Pennsylvania’s governor Gifford Pinchot in the 1920s. The dog actually was sent to Eastern State Penitentiary, where his mug shot was taken...More

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Always Trustworthy

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 6−7, Luke 20:27−47

The Lord is trustworthy in all he promises.
Psalm 145:13

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 145:9−13

I’m a worrier. Early mornings are the worst because I’m alone with my thoughts. So I taped this quote from Hudson Taylor on my bathroom mirror, where I can see it when I’m feeling vulnerable: “There is a living God. He has spoken in the Bible. He means what He says and will do all He has promised.”

Taylor’s words came from years of walking with God and remind us of who He is and all He can do through...More

Friday, April 28, 2023

Laughing Out Loud

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 3–5, Luke 20:1–26

God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.
Genesis 21:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 21:1–7

Comedian John Branyan said, “We didn’t think up laughter; that wasn’t our idea. That was given to us by [God who] knew we were going to need it to get through life. [Because] He knew we were going to have hardship, He knew we were going to have struggles, He knew . . . stuff was going to happen. . . . Laughter is a gift.”

A quick look at the creatures God made can bring...More

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Watering The Weeds

Bible in a Year: 1 Kings 1–2, Luke 19:28–48

So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
Galatians 5:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: Galatians 5:13–26

This spring, weeds attacked our backyard like something out of Jurassic Park. One got so big that when I tried to pull it out, I feared I might injure myself. Before I could find a spade to whack it down, I noticed that my daughter was actually pouring water on it. “Why are you watering the weeds?!” I exclaimed. “I want to see how big it will get!” she replied with an impish...More

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Strong and Good

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 23–24, Luke 19:1–27

The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.
Psalm 118:22

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 118:13–14, 22–29

The young campus minister was troubled. But he looked conflicted when I dared to ask if he prays . . . for God’s direction . . . for His help. To pray, as Paul urged, without ceasing. In reply, the young man confessed, “I’m not sure I believe anymore in prayer.” He frowned. “Or believe that God is listening. Just look at the world.” That young leader was “building” a ministry in his...More

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Let It Go

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 21–22, Luke 18:24–43

Do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.
Romans 13:14

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 13:11–14

Augustine’s autobiographical Confessions describes his long and winding journey to Jesus. On one occasion, he was riding to the palace to give a flattering speech for the emperor. He was fretting over his deceptive applause lines when he noticed a drunken beggar “joking and laughing.” He realized the drunk already had whatever fleeting happiness his shifty career might bring, and with much less...More

Monday, April 24, 2023

String Too Short to Use

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 19–20, Luke 18:1–23

I will rain down bread from heaven for you.
Exodus 16:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 16:21–30

Aunt Margaret’s frugality was legendary. After she passed away, her nieces began the nostalgically bittersweet task of sorting her belongings. In a drawer, neatly arrayed inside a small plastic bag, they discovered an assortment of small pieces of string. The label read: “String too short to use.”

What would motivate someone to keep and categorize something they knew to be of no use? Perhaps this person...More

Sunday, April 23, 2023

Loving Like Jesus

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 16–18, Luke 17:20–37

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
1 John 3:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 John 3:11–18

While waiting for a train at a station in Atlanta, Georgia, a young man wearing dress pants and a button-down shirt sat on a bench. As he struggled with his tie, an older woman encouraged her husband to help. When the elderly man hunched over and began teaching the young man how to knot the tie, a stranger took a photo of the trio. When this photo went viral online, many viewers left...More

Saturday, April 22, 2023

The Power of Forgiveness

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 14–15, Luke 17:1–19

You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.
Psalm 86:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 18:23–35

A 2021 news reports told of seventeen missionaries that had been kidnapped by a gang. The gang threatened to kill the group (including children) if their ransom demands weren’t met. Incredibly, all the missionaries were either released or escaped to freedom. On reaching safety, they sent a message to their captors: “Jesus taught us by word and by His own example that the power of...More

Friday, April 21, 2023

Discovering Creation

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 12–13, Luke 16

In his hand are the depths of the earth.
Psalm 95:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 95:1–7

Krubera-Voronja, in the Eurasian country of Georgia, is one of the deepest caves yet explored on planet Earth. A team of explorers have probed the dark and scary depths of its mostly vertical caverns to 2,197 meters—that’s 7,208 feet into the earth! Similar caves, around four hundred of them, exist in other parts of the country and across the globe. More caverns are being discovered all the time and new depth records are being...More

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Pressing On in Jesus

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 9–11, Luke 15:11–32

Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on.
Philippians 3:13–14

Today's Scripture & Insight: Philippians 3:12–16

On a run in the forest, I tried to find a shortcut and went down an unfamiliar path. Wondering if I was lost, I asked a runner coming the other way if I was on the right track.

“Yup,” he replied confidently. Seeing my doubtful look, he quickly added: “Don’t worry, I’ve tried all the wrong routes! But that’s okay, it’s all part of the...More

Wednesday, April 19, 2023


Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 6–8, Luke 15:1–10

“For whom am I toiling,” he asked, “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?”
Ecclesiastes 4:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ecclesiastes 4:7–12

For many around the world, life is getting lonelier. The number of Americans who have no friends has quadrupled since 1990. Certain European countries have up to 20 percent of their population feeling lonely, while in Japan, some elderly folks have resorted to crime so they can have the companionship of inmates in jail.

Entrepreneurs have come up with a...More

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Future Faithfulness

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 3–5, Luke 14:25–35

I will give them all the prosperity I have promised them.
Jeremiah 32:42

Today's Scripture & Insight: Jeremiah 32:37–44

Sara lost her mother when she was just fourteen years old. She and her siblings lost their house soon after and became homeless. Years later, Sara wanted to provide her future children with an inheritance that could be passed down from generation to generation. She worked hard to purchase a house, giving her family the stable home she never had.

Investing in a home for future generations is an...More

Monday, April 17, 2023

Remembering to Praise

Bible in a Year: 2 Samuel 1–2, Luke 14:1–24

I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord.
Isaiah 63:7

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 63:7–9

When our congregation built our first building, people wrote thankful reminders on the wall studs and concrete floors before the interior of the building was finished. Pull back the drywall from the studs and you’ll find them there. Verse after verse from Scripture, written beside prayers of praise like “You are so good!” We left them there as a witness to future generations that regardless of our challenges, God had been...More

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Greater Love

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 30–31, Luke 13:23–35

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
John 15:13

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 15:9–17

Just days before Holy Week, when Christians around the world remember Jesus’ sacrifice and celebrate His resurrection, a terrorist stormed into a supermarket in southwest France opening fire and killing two. After negotiation, the terrorist released all but one hostage, whom he turned into a human shield. Knowing the danger, police officer Arnaud Beltrame did the unthinkable: he...More

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Reconciling Relationships

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 27–29, Luke 13:1–22

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4:32

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ephesians 4:22–32

My sister and I clashed frequently when we were younger, but one time especially stands out in my memory. After a bout of yelling back and forth where we’d both said hurtful things, she said something that in the moment seemed unforgivable. Witnessing the animosity growing between us, my grandmother reminded us of our responsibility to love each other: “God...More

Friday, April 14, 2023

Uphill All the Way

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 25–26, Luke 12:32–59

Let him do to me whatever seems good to him.
2 Samuel 15:26

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Samuel 15:13–14, 23–26

Christina Rossetti, a poet and devotional writer, found that nothing came easily for her. She suffered from depression and various illnesses throughout her life and endured broken engagements. Eventually she died of cancer.

When David burst into Israel’s national consciousness, it was as a triumphant warrior. Yet throughout his life, David faced hardship. Late in his reign, his own son, along...More

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Tears of Praise

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 22–24, Luke 12:1–31

Sing the praises of the Lord, you his faithful people; praise his holy name.
Psalm 30:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 30

Years ago, I cared for my mom as she was in hospice. I thanked God for the four months He allowed me to serve as her caregiver and asked Him to help me through the grieving process. I often struggled to praise God as I wrestled with my mixed emotions. But as my mom breathed her last breath and I wept uncontrollably, I whispered, “Hallelujah.” I felt guilty for praising God in that devastating...More

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

God Speaking to Us

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 19–21, Luke 11:29–54

Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.”
1 Samuel 3:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Samuel 3:3–10

I received a phone call from an unknown number. Often, I let those calls go to voicemail, but this time I picked up. The random caller asked politely if I had just a minute for him to share a short Bible passage. He quoted Revelation 21:3–5 about how God “will wipe every tear from their eyes.” He talked about Jesus, how he was our assurance and hope. I told him I already know Jesus as my personal...More

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Seize the Opportunity

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 17–18, Luke 11:1–28

Do the work of an evangelist.
2 Timothy 4:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Timothy 4:1–5

While waiting to enter the university, twenty-year-old Shin Yi decided to commit three months of her break to serving in a youth mission organization. It seemed like an odd time to do this, given the COVID-19 restrictions that prevented face-to-face meetings. But Shin Yi soon found a way. “We couldn’t meet up with students on the streets, in shopping malls, or fast-food centers like we usually did,” she shared. “But we...More

Monday, April 10, 2023

Strength in Weakness

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 15–16, Luke 10:25–42

The Lord said to Gideon, “You have too many men.”
Judges 7:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Judges 7:1–9

When my son was nearly three, I needed an operation that would require a month or more of recovery. Prior to the procedure, I imagined myself in bed while stacks of dirty dishes accumulated in the sink. I wasn’t sure how I’d take care of an active toddler and couldn’t picture myself standing in front of the stove to cook our meals. I dreaded the impact my weakness would have on the rhythm of our...More

Sunday, April 9, 2023

Deeper Healing

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 13–14, Luke 10:1–24

By his wounds we are healed.
Isaiah 53:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 53:4–6

On Easter Sunday 2020, the famous Christ the Redeemer statue that overlooks Rio de Janeiro in Brazil was illuminated in a way that appeared to clothe Jesus in the attire of a physician. The poignant portrayal of Christ as a doctor was in tribute to the many frontline health-care workers battling the coronavirus pandemic. The imagery brings to life the common description of Jesus as our Great Physician (Mark...More

Saturday, April 8, 2023

Running to Jesus

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 10–12, Luke 9:37–62

Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.
John 20:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 20:1–10

On a trip to Paris, Ben and his friends found themselves at one of the renowned museums in the city. Though Ben wasn’t a student of art, he was in awe as he looked upon the painting titled The Disciples Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre on the Morning of the Resurrection by Eugène Burnand. Without words, the looks on the faces of Peter and John and the position of their hands speak...More

Friday, April 7, 2023

Drops of Red

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 7–9, Luke 9:18–36

His sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.
Luke 22:44

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 22:39–44

Walking through the Scottish National Gallery, I was drawn to the strong brushwork and vibrant colors of one of many Olive Trees paintings by Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh. Many historians believe the work was inspired by Jesus’ experience in the garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives. What especially caught my eye on the canvas of the painting were the small red splotches of paint among the ancient...More

Thursday, April 6, 2023

The Challenge to Serve

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 4–6, Luke 9:1–17

The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve.
Matthew 20:28

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 13:3–15

Although just thirteen years old, DeAvion took up a challenge to serve others. He and his mom had heard a story about a man who called on kids to mow fifty lawns for free during their summer break. Their focus was to assist veterans, single moms, people with disabilities—or anyone who just needed help. The founder (who had mowed fifty lawns in fifty states) created the challenge to teach the importance of work...More

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

More Than a Little Piece

Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 1–3, Luke 8:26–56

Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
Matthew 16:24

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 16:21–28

We all leave a bit of ourselves behind when we move to a new place. But to become a long-term resident of Villas Las Estrellas, Antarctica, a cold and desolate place, leaving a piece of yourself behind is a literal thing. With the nearest hospital 625 miles away, a person will be in serious trouble if their appendix bursts. So every citizen must first undergo an appendectomy...More

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

At Home in Jesus

Bible in a Year: Ruth 1–4, Luke 8:1–25

Remain in me, as I also remain in you.
John 15:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 15:1–11

Several years ago, we brought home an adult black cat named Juno from the local animal shelter. Truthfully, I only wanted help thinning our mice population, but the rest of the family wanted a pet. The shelter gave us rigorous instructions on how to establish a feeding routine that first week so Juno would learn our house was his home, the place he belonged and where he’d always have food and safety. This way, even if Juno might roam, he...More

Monday, April 3, 2023

Finding Strength in God

Bible in a Year: Judges 19–21, Luke 7:31–50

I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 12:9–10

Soccer player Christian Pulisic faced several injuries that influenced his career. After learning he wouldn’t be in the starting lineup of the Champions League semifinals game, he was disappointed, but he described how God had revealed Himself to him. “As always, I reach out to God, and He gives me strength,” he said. “I feel like I always have Someone...More

Sunday, April 2, 2023

Bluestone Church Bells

Bible in a Year: Judges 16–18, Luke 7:1–30

I tell you,...if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.
Luke 19:40

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 19:37–42

Bluestone is a fascinating variety of rock. When struck, certain bluestones will ring with a musical tone. Maenclochog, a Welsh village whose name means “bell” or “ringing stones,” used bluestones as church bells until the eighteenth century. Interestingly, the ruins of Stonehenge, in England, are built of bluestone, causing some to wonder if that landmark’s original purpose was musical. Some researchers...More

Saturday, April 1, 2023

More Than Skin Deep

Bible in a Year: Judges 13–15, Luke 6:27–49

Oh, what joy for those...whose sin is put out of sight!
Psalm 32:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 32

José, a young believer in Jesus, was visiting his brother’s church. As he entered the sanctuary prior to the service, his brother’s face fell when he saw him. José’s tattoos, covering both arms, were visible since he was wearing a T-shirt. His brother told him to go home and put on a long-sleeved shirt, for many of José’s tattoos reflected the ways of his past. José suddenly felt dirty. But another man overheard...More

Friday, March 31, 2023

Rest Assured in God

Bible in a Year: Judges 11–12, Luke 6:1–26

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.
Isaiah 26:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 26:1–6

Researchers in Fujian, China, wanted to help intensive care unit (ICU) patients sleep more soundly. They measured the effects of sleep aids on test subjects in a simulated ICU environment, complete with bright, hospital-grade lighting and audio recordings of machines beeping and nurses talking. Their research showed that tools like sleep masks and ear plugs improved their...More

Thursday, March 30, 2023

To Do or Not to Do

Bible in a Year: Judges 9–10, Luke 5:17–39

I do not do the good I want to do,...I keep on doing [evil].
Romans 7:19

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 7:15–20

When I was a kid, a decommissioned World War II tank was put on display in a park near my home. Multiple signs warned of the danger of climbing on the vehicle, but a couple of my friends immediately scrambled up. Some of us were a bit reluctant, but eventually we did the same. One boy refused, pointing to the posted signs. Another jumped down quickly as an adult approached. The temptation to have fun outweighed...More

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

God Had Other Plans

Bible in a Year: Judges 7–8, Luke 5:1–16

Pharaoh’s daughter...named him Moses, saying, “I drew him out of the water.”
Exodus 2:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 2:1–10

Their precise ages are unknown. One was found on the steps of a church; the other knew only that she’d been raised by nuns. Born in Poland during World War II, for nearly eighty years neither Halina nor Krystyna knew about each other. Then DNA test results revealed them to be sisters and led to a joyful reunion. It also revealed their Jewish heritage, explaining why they’d been abandoned....More

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Stress to Peace

Bible in a Year: Judges 4–6, Luke 4:31–44

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Philippians 4:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Philippians 4:4–8

Moving ranks as one of the biggest stressors in life. We moved to our current home after I’d lived in my previous one for nearly twenty years. I’d lived alone in that first home for eight years before I got married. Then my husband moved in, along with all his things. Later, we added a child, and that meant even more...More

Monday, March 27, 2023

God Is Listening

Bible in a Year: Judges 1–3, Luke 4:1–30

The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
James 5:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: James 5:13–16

Chuck, an actor and martial artist, honored his mother on her hundredth birthday by sharing how instrumental she’d been in his spiritual transformation. “Mom has been an example of perseverance and faith,” he wrote. She raised three boys on her own during the Great Depression; suffered the death of two spouses, a son, a stepson, and grandchildren; and endured many surgeries. “[She] has prayed for me all my...More

Sunday, March 26, 2023

The Telling Room

Bible in a Year: Joshua 22–24, Luke 3

Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself.
1 Samuel 18:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Samuel 18:1–4

Northern Spain produced a beautiful way of expressing communion and friendship. With the countryside full of handmade caves, after each harvest some farmers would sit in a room built above a cave and inventory their various foods. As time passed, the room became known as the “telling room”—a place of communion where friends and families would gather to share their stories, secrets, and dreams. If you...More

Saturday, March 25, 2023

The Reboot of Grace

Bible in a Year: Joshua 19–21, Luke 2:25–52

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22–23

Today's Scripture & Insight: Lamentations 3:16–33

Over the last several decades, a new word has entered our movie vocabulary: reboot. In cinematic parlance, a reboot takes an old story and jumpstarts it. Some reboots retell a familiar tale, like a superhero story or a fairytale. Other reboots take a lesser-known story and retell it in a new way. But in each...More

Friday, March 24, 2023

Recognizing God’s Voice

Bible in a Year: Joshua 16–18, Luke 2:1–24

I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
Acts 20:32

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 20:22–32

After years of research, scientists have learned that wolves have distinct voices that help them communicate with each other. Using a specific sound analysis code, one scientist realized that various volumes and pitches in a wolf’s howl enabled her to identify specific wolves with 100 percent accuracy.

The Bible provides many...More

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Why Do This?

Bible in a Year: Joshua 13–15, Luke 1:57–80

The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul.
Psalm 19:7

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 19:7–11

As I was helping my sixth-grade grandson, Logan, with some tough algebra-type homework, he told me of his dream of becoming an engineer. After we returned to figuring out what to do with the x’s and y’s in his assignment, he said, “When am I ever going to use this stuff?”

I couldn’t help but smile, saying, “Well, Logan, this is exactly the stuff you’ll use if you become an engineer!” He...More

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Permission to Rest

Bible in a Year: Joshua 10–12, Luke 1:39–56

God had finished the work...so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.
Genesis 2:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 1:31–2:2

We sat atop some beach boulders, my friend Soozi and I, watching the foam send up sea spray in arched curls. Looking at the incoming waves crashing one after another against the rocks, Soozi announced, “I love the ocean. It keeps moving so I don’t have to!”

Isn’t it interesting how some of us feel we need “permission” to pause from our work to rest? Well, that’s...More

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Spiritual Renewal

Bible in a Year: Joshua 7–9, Luke 1:21–38

Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
2 Corinthians 4:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 4:16–18

Chinese medicine has practiced pearl powder exfoliation for thousands of years, using ground pearls to scrub away dead cells resting at the top of the skin. In Romania, rejuvenating therapeutic mud has become a widely sought-after exfoliant that’s purported to make skin youthful and glowing. All over the world, people use body care practices they believe will renew even the...More

Monday, March 20, 2023

Catching Contentment

Bible in a Year: Joshua 4–6, Luke 1:1–20

I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content.
Psalm 131:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 131

In a psychiatrist’s advice column, he responded to a reader named Brenda, who lamented that her ambitious pursuits had left her discontented. His words were blunt. Humans aren’t designed to be happy, he said, “only to survive and reproduce.” We’re cursed to chase the “teasing and elusive butterfly” of contentment, he added, “not always to capture it.”

I wonder how Brenda...More

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Brother Saul

Bible in a Year: Joshua 1–3, Mark 16

Placing his hands on Saul, [Ananias] said, “Brother Saul, the Lord...has sent me.”
Acts 9:17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 9:10–19

“Lord, please send me anywhere but there.” That was my prayer as a teenager before embarking on a year as a foreign exchange student. I didn’t know where I would be going, but I knew where I didn’t want to go. I didn’t speak that country’s language, and my mind was filled with prejudices against its customs and people. So I asked God to send me elsewhere.

But God in His...More

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Weeding Out Sins

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 32–34, Mark 15:26–47

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins.
1 John 1:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 John 1:5–2:2

When I noticed a sprig budding next to the garden hose by our porch, I ignored the seemingly harmless eyesore. How could a little weed possibly hurt our lawn? But as the weeks passed, that nuisance grew to be the size of a small bush and began taking over our yard. Its stray stalks arched over a portion of our walkway and sprouted up in other areas. Admitting its destructive existence, I...More

Friday, March 17, 2023

We’re Not Alone

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 30–31, Mark 15:1–25

I stand at the door and knock.
Revelation 3:20

Today's Scripture & Insight: Revelation 3:14–22

In Fredric Brown's short story thriller “Knock,” he wrote, “The last man on Earth sat alone in a room. There was a knock on the door.” Yikes! Who could that be, and what do they want? What mysterious being has come for him? The man is not alone.

Neither are we.

The church in Laodicea heard a knock on their door (Revelation 3:20). What supernatural Being had come for them? His name was Jesus,...More

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Scripture Training

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 28–29, Mark 14:54–72

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.
2 Timothy 3:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Timothy 3:1–9, 14–17

In the late 1800s, people in different places developed similar ministry resources at the same time. The first was in Montreal, Canada, in 1877. In 1898, another concept was launched in New York City. By 1922, some five thousand of these programs were active in North America each summer.

Thus began the early history of Vacation...More

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Still Before God

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 26–27, Mark 14:27–53

Be still, and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 46

The first photograph of a living person was taken by Louis Daguerre in 1838. The photo depicts a figure on an otherwise empty avenue in Paris in the middle of an afternoon. But there’s an apparent mystery about it; the street and sidewalks should have been bustling with the traffic of carriages and pedestrians at that time of day, yet none can be seen.

The man wasn’t alone. People and horses were there on the busy Boulevard...More

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Game of Change

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 23–25, Mark 14:1–26

Love your enemies.
Luke 6:27

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 6:27–31

The handshake spoke volumes. On a March night in 1963, two college basketball players—one Black, one White—defied the hate of segregationists and shook hands, marking the first time in Mississippi State’s history that its all-White men’s team played against an integrated team. To compete in the “game of change” against Loyola University Chicago in a national tournament, the Mississippi State squad avoided an injunction to stop them by...More

Monday, March 13, 2023

Running for What Matters

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 20–22, Mark 13:21–37

Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
Hebrews 12:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Hebrews 11:39–12:3

It was impossible not to tear up at my friend Ira’s status update. Posted in 2022 only days after she’d left her home in Kyiv, the besieged capital of Ukraine, she shared a past image of herself lifting her country’s flag after completing a running event. She wrote, “We are all running to the best of our abilities a marathon called life. Let’s run it these days even better than that. With...More

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Friends and Enemies

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 17–19, Mark 13:1–20

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
Romans 12:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 12:17–21

Scholar Kenneth E. Bailey told of the leader of an African nation who’d learned to maintain an unusual posture in the international community. He’d established a good relationship with both Israel and the nations surrounding it. When someone asked him how his nation maintained this fragile balance, he responded, “We choose our friends. We do not encourage our friends to choose our...More

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Musical Medicine.

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 14–16, Mark 12:28–44

David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul.
1 Samuel 16:23

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Samuel 16:14–23

When five-year-old Bella was hospitalized for cancer in North Dakota, she received music therapy as part of her treatment. Many people have experienced the powerful effect of music on mood without understanding exactly why, but researchers have recently documented a clinical benefit. Music is now being prescribed for cancer patients like Bella, and those suffering from Parkinson’s...More

Friday, March 10, 2023

Waters of Encouragement

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 11–13, Mark 12:1–27

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
1 Thessalonians 5:11

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Thessalonians 5:4–11

I call it the “lean to green” miracle. It’s happened every spring for more than fifteen years. Coming out of the winter months, the grass in our yard is dusty and brown, so much so, a casual passerby might believe it’s dead. Colorado has snow in the mountains, but the climate on the plains—“the Front Range”—is dry, with most warmer months full of...More

Thursday, March 9, 2023

Comfort on Doorframes

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 8–10, Mark 11:19–33

Write [these commandments] on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
Deuteronomy 6:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: Deuteronomy 6:4–9

As I scanned my social media feed in the aftermath of the 2016 flood in southern Louisiana, I came across a friend’s post. After realizing her home would have to be gutted and rebuilt, my friend’s mom encouraged her to look for God even in the heart-wrenching work of cleaning up. My friend later posted pictures of Bible verses she uncovered on the exposed door frames of the...More

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

God’s Powerful Presence

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 5–7, Mark 11:1–18

The Lord announces the word, and the women who proclaim it are a mighty throng.
Psalm 68:11

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 68:4–14

In 2020, celebrations marked the one hundredth anniversary of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which gave women the right to vote. Old photographs show marchers with banners emblazoned with the words of Psalm 68:11: “The Lord giveth the word. The women that publish the tidings are a great host” (asv).

In Psalm 68, David describes God as the...More

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Never Too Far

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 3–4, Mark 10:32–52

When you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.
Luke 22:32

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 22:31–34, 54–62

Raj had trusted Jesus as Savior in his youth, but soon afterward, he drifted from the faith and led a life apart from God. Then one day, he made the decision to renew his relationship with Jesus and go back to church—only to be scolded by a woman who berated him for being absent for all these years. The scolding added to Raj’s sense of shame and guilt for his years of drifting. Am I beyond hope? he...More

Monday, March 6, 2023

All Alone?

Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 1–2, Mark 10:1–31

God heard the boy crying.
Genesis 21:17

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 21:9–19

Sue’s family was falling apart before her eyes. Her husband had suddenly left the home, and she and her children were confused and angry. She asked him to go for marriage counseling with her, but he wouldn’t because he claimed the problems were hers. Panic and hopelessness set in when she realized he might never come back. Would she be able to care for herself and her children alone?

Hagar, a servant of Abraham and Sarah,...More

Sunday, March 5, 2023

God Knows Us

Bible in a Year: Numbers 34–36, Mark 9:30–50

You know me, Lord.
Jeremiah 12:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: Jeremiah 12:1–3

I recently saw a photograph of Michelangelo’s sculpture Moses, in which a close-up view showed a small bulging muscle on Moses’ right arm. This muscle is the extensor digiti minimi, and the contraction only appears when someone lifts their pinky. Michelangelo, known as a master of intricate details, paid close attention to the human bodies he sculpted, adding intimate features most everyone else would miss. Michelangelo knew the human body in...More

Saturday, March 4, 2023

Listening to God

Bible in a Year: Numbers 31–33, Mark 9:1–29

[Josiah] would not listen to what Necho had said at God’s command.
2 Chronicles 35:22

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Chronicles 35:20–27

Back when I was driving to college and back home again, the road to our house in the desert seemed painfully dull. Because it was long and straight, I found myself driving faster than I should have more than once. First, I was given a warning from the highway patrol. Then I received a ticket. Then I was cited a second time in the very same place.

Refusing to listen can have...More

Friday, March 3, 2023

This Love Is Real

Bible in a Year: Numbers 28–30, Mark 8:22–38

While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 5:6−8

“I felt like the rug had been pulled from under me,” Jojie said. “The shock of the discovery was like a physical blow.” She’d found out that her fiancé was seeing someone else. Jojie’s previous relationship had ended similarly. So when she later heard about God’s love at a Bible study, she couldn’t help wondering: Is this another scam? Will I get hurt if I believe God when He says He loves me?...More

Thursday, March 2, 2023

A Refreshing Oasis

Bible in a Year: Numbers 26–27, Mark 8:1–21

Blessed is the one...who meditates on his law day and night.
Psalm 1:1–2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 1

When Andrew and his family went on safari in Kenya, they had the pleasure of watching a variety of animals frequenting a small lake that appeared in the scrabbly landscape. Giraffes, wildebeests, hippopotamuses, and waterfowl all traveled to this life-giving source of water. As Andrew observed their comings and goings, he thought how the “Bible is like a divine watering hole”—not only is it a source of guidance...More

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Finding Rest in Jesus

Bible in a Year: Numbers 23–25, Mark 7:14–37

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:28

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 11:28–30

The restless soul is never satisfied with wealth and success. A deceased country music icon could testify to this truth. He had nearly forty of his albums appear on Billboard’s country music top- ten charts and just as many number one singles. But he also had multiple marriages and spent time in prison. Even with all his achievements, he once lamented: “There’s a restlessness in my...More

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

A Baboon, a Donkey, and Me

Bible in a Year: Numbers 20–22, Mark 7:1–13

Then the Lord opened the donkey’s mouth.
Numbers 22:28

Today's Scripture & Insight: Numbers 22:21–31

Jack knew how to put trains on the right track. In nine years of work, he never missed a track switch as locomotives drew near the Uitenhage, South Africa, station, indicating by their whistles the direction they were to go.

Jack was also a chacma baboon. He was cared for by railway signalman James Wide, and Jack in turn took care of James. Wide had lost both his legs in a fall between moving rail cars. He...More

Monday, February 27, 2023

Seeing a Need

Bible in a Year: Numbers 17–19, Mark 6:30–56

All the widows stood around [Peter], crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made.
Acts 9:39

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 9:36–42

In the last few days of my dad’s life, one of the nurses dropped by his room and asked me if she could give him a shave. As Rachel gently pulled the razor across his face, she explained, “Older men of his generation like to have a neat shave every day.” Rachel had seen a need and acted on her instinct to show kindness, dignity, and respect to someone. The...More

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Is It a Sign?

Bible in a Year: Numbers 15–16, Mark 6:1–29

I desire to do your will, my God; your law is within my heart.
Psalm 40:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Samuel 24:1–7

The offer looked good, and was exactly what Peter needed. After being laid off, this sole breadwinner of a young family had prayed desperately for a job. “Surely this is God’s answer to your prayers,” his friends suggested.

Reading about the prospective employer, however, Peter felt uneasy. The company invested in suspicious businesses and had been flagged for corruption. In the end, Peter...More

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Keep Talking about Jesus!

Bible in a Year: Numbers 12–14, Mark 5:21–43

Day after day, . . . [the apostles] never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah.
Acts 5:42

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 5:17–21, 25–29, 41–42

In an interview, a musician who’s a believer in Christ recalls a time he was urged to “stop talking about Jesus” so much. Why? It was suggested that his band could be more famous and raise more money to feed the poor if he stopped saying his work was all about Jesus. After thinking it through, he decided, “The entire point of my...More

Friday, February 24, 2023

Praying in Difficult Times

Bible in a Year: Numbers 9–11, Mark 5:1–20

From the ends of the earth I call to you . . . as my heart grows faint.
Psalm 61:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 61

Author and theologian Russell Moore described noticing the eerie silence in the Russian orphanage where he adopted his boys. Someone later explained that the babies had stopped crying because they learned that no one would respond to their cries.

When we face difficult times, we too can feel that no one hears. And worst of all, we can feel that God Himself doesn’t listen to our cries or see our...More

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Water of Life

Bible in a Year: Numbers 7–8, Mark 4:21–41

You would have asked him and he would have given you living water.
John 4:10

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 4:4–14

Andrea’s home life was unstable, and she left at fourteen, finding a job and living with friends. Yearning for love and affirmation, she later moved in with a man who introduced her to drugs, which she added to the alcohol she already drank regularly. But the relationship and the substances didn’t satisfy her longings. She kept searching, and after several years she met some believers in Jesus who reached...More

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Be Humble Day

Bible in a Year: Numbers 4–6, Mark 4:1–20

He humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!
Philippians 2:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Philippians 2:1–11

I’m often amused by the unofficial holidays people come up with. February alone has a Sticky Bun Day, a Sword Swallowers Day, even a Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day! Today has been labeled Be Humble Day. Universally recognized as a virtue, humility is certainly worth celebrating. But interestingly, this hasn’t always been the case.

Humility was considered a weakness, not a...More

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Protect Your Heart

Bible in a Year: Numbers 1–3, Mark 3

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
Proverbs 4:23

Today's Scripture & Insight: Proverbs 4:20–27

Hungarian-born mathematician Abraham Wald lent his skills to the World War II efforts after coming to the United States in 1938. The military was looking for ways to protect its aircraft from enemy fire, so Wald and his colleagues at the Statistical Research Group were asked to figure out how to better protect military aircraft to defend against enemy fire. They began by examining returning aircraft to...More

Monday, February 20, 2023

What’s Truly Needed

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 26–27, Mark 2

You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.
Mark 7:8

Today's Scripture & Insight: Mark 7:8–13

While preparing a meal, a young mother cut a pot roast in half before she put it in a large pot. Her husband asked her why she cut the meat in half. She replied, “Because that’s the way my mother does it.”

Her husband’s question, however, piqued the woman’s curiosity. So she asked her mother about the tradition. She was shocked to learn that her mother cut the meat so it would fit...More

Sunday, February 19, 2023

Revival Comes

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 25, Mark 1:23–45

If my people . . . will humble themselves . . . , then I will hear from heaven.
2 Chronicles 7:14

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Chronicles 7:11–16

Aurukun is a small town in northern Australia—its Aboriginal population drawn from seven clans. While the gospel came to Aurukun a century ago, eye-for-eye retribution sometimes remained. In 2015, clan tensions grew, and when a murder happened, payback required someone from the offender’s family to die in return.

But something remarkable happened in early 2016. The...More

Saturday, February 18, 2023

Prayer Cards

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 23–24, Mark 1:1–22

Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.
Ephesians 6:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ephesians 6:10–20

During a writing conference where I served as a faculty member, Tamy handed me a postcard with a handwritten prayer on the back. She explained that she read the faculty biographies, wrote specific prayers on each card, and prayed as she delivered them to us. In awe over the details in her personal message to me, I thanked God for encouraging me through Tamy’s gesture. Then I prayed for...More

Friday, February 17, 2023

Cleansed Completely

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 21–22, Matthew 28

All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.
Isaiah 64:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 64:1–8

Recently, my wife and I were cleaning our house before having guests over. I noticed some dark stains on our white kitchen tile floor—the kind that required getting on my knees to scrub.

But I soon had a sinking realization: the more I scrubbed, the more I noticed other stains. Each stain I eliminated only made the others that much more obvious. Our kitchen floor...More

Thursday, February 16, 2023

Reflecting Christ’s Light

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 19–20, Matthew 27:51–66

In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.
John 1:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 1:4–9

To capture the beauty of reflective light in his landscape oil paintings, artist Armand Cabrera works with a key artistic principle: “Reflected light is never as strong as its source light.” He observes that novice painters tend to exaggerate reflected light. He says, “Reflected light belongs to the shadow and as such it must support, not compete with the lighted areas of your painting.”


Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Juror Number 8

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 17–18, Matthew 27:27–50

Do not follow the crowd in doing wrong.
Exodus 23:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Exodus 23:1–9

“One man is dead. Another man’s life is at stake,” says the judge somberly in the classic 1957 film 12 Angry Men. The evidence against the young suspect appears overwhelming. But during deliberations, it’s the brokenness of the jury that’s exposed. One of the twelve—juror number 8—votes “not guilty.” A heated debate ensues, in which the lone juror is mocked as he points out discrepancies in the testimony....More

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Rejoicing Love

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 15–16, Matthew 27:1–26

As a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will your God rejoice over you.
Isaiah 62:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 62:1–5

Brendan and Katie beamed at each other. Looking at the pure joy on their faces, you would have never guessed the difficult ways so many of their wedding plans had been dramatically altered due to COVID-19 restrictions. Even with only twenty-five family members present, joy and peace radiated from the two as they said their vows because of their love for each other and expressed their...More

Monday, February 13, 2023

When Hard Pressed

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 14, Matthew 26:51–75

The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.
Psalm 118:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 118:5–14

Many years ago, a friend told me how intimidated she was while trying to cross a street where several roads intersected. “I’d never seen anything like this; the rules I’d been taught for crossing the street seemed ineffective. I was so frightened that I’d stand on the corner, wait for the bus, and ask the bus driver if he’d please allow me to ride to the other side of the street. It would take a long time before I...More

Sunday, February 12, 2023

Information and Evidence

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 13, Matthew 26:26–50

These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.
John 20:31

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 20:26–31

When Doris Kearns Goodwin decided to write a book about Abraham Lincoln, the fact that some fourteen thousand books had already been written about America’s sixteenth president intimidated her. What could be left to say about this beloved leader? Undeterred, Goodwin’s work resulted in A Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln. Her fresh insights on Lincoln’s...More

Saturday, February 11, 2023

An Undeserved Gift

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 11–12, Matthew 26:1–25

Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.
1 Timothy 1:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 Timothy 1:12–16

When my friend gave me a gift recently, I was surprised. I didn’t think I deserved such a nice present from her. She’d sent it after hearing about some work stress I was experiencing. Yet she was going through just as much stress, if not more, than I was, with an aging parent, challenging children, upheaval at work, and strain on her marriage. I couldn’t believe she had thought...More

Friday, February 10, 2023

Come Home to God

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 8–10, Matthew 25:31–46

He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.
Psalm 91:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 91:1−2, 14−16

One early evening while I was jogging near a construction site in our neighborhood, a skinny, dirty kitten meowed at me plaintively and followed me home. Today, Mickey is a healthy, handsome adult cat, enjoying a comfortable life in our household and deeply loved by my family. Whenever I jog on the road where I found him, I often think, Thank You, God. Mickey was spared from living on the streets. He...More

Thursday, February 9, 2023

Seeing Jesus

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 6–7, Matthew 25:1–30

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.
John 14:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 14:1–11

At four months old, Leo had never seen his parents. He’d been born with a rare condition that left his vision blurred. For him, it was like living in dense fog. But then eye doctors fit him with a special set of glasses.

Leo’s father posted the video of Mom placing the new glasses over his eyes for the first time. We watch as Leo’s eyes slowly focus. A smile spreads wide across his face as he truly sees his...More

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

God’s Arms Are Open

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 4–5, Matthew 24:29–51

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins.
1 John 1:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: 1 John 1:5–10

I frowned at my cellphone and sighed. Worry wrinkled my brow. A friend and I had had a serious disagreement over an issue with our children, and I knew I needed to call her and apologize. I didn’t want to do it because our viewpoints were still in conflict, yet I knew I hadn’t been kind or humble the last time we discussed the matter.

Anticipating the phone call, I wondered,...More

Tuesday, February 7, 2023

The Good Shepherd

Bible in a Year: Leviticus 1–3, Matthew 24:1–28

As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock..., so will I look after my sheep.
Ezekiel 34:12

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ezekiel 34:11–16

When Pastor Warren heard that a man in his church had deserted his wife and family, he asked God to help him meet the man as if by accident so they could chat. And He did! When Warren walked into a restaurant, he spotted the gentleman in a nearby booth. “Got some room for another hungry man?” he asked, and soon they were sharing deeply and praying together.

As a...More

Monday, February 6, 2023

The Loneliest Man

Bible in a Year: Exodus 39–40, Matthew 23:23–39

While Joseph was there in the prison, the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness.
Genesis 39:20–21

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 39:11–22

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out of their lunar landing module and became the first humans to walk on the surface of the moon. But we don’t often think about the third person on their team, Michael Collins, who was flying the command module for Apollo 11.

After his teammates clambered down the ladder to test the lunar surface,...More

Sunday, February 5, 2023

I Can Only Imagine

Bible in a Year: Exodus 36–38, Matthew 23:1–22

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.
Ecclesiastes 12:7

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 5:1–10

I settled into the church pew behind a woman as the worship team began playing “I Can Only Imagine.” Raising my hands, I praised God as the woman’s sweet soprano voice harmonized with mine. After telling me about her health struggles, we decided to pray together during her upcoming cancer treatments.

A few months later, Louise told me she feared dying....More

Saturday, February 4, 2023

What’s Your Name?

Bible in a Year: Exodus 34–35, Matthew 22:23–46

Don’t call me Naomi...Call me Mara, because the Almighty has made my life very bitter.
Ruth 1:20

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ruth 1:3–8, 15–21

Jen remarried after her first husband died. The children of her new husband never accepted her, and now that he’s passed away too, they hate her for remaining in their childhood home. Her husband left a modest sum to provide for her; his kids say she’s stealing their inheritance. Jen is understandably discouraged, and she’s grown bitter.

Naomi’s husband...More

Friday, February 3, 2023

We Are Strangers

Bible in a Year: Exodus 31–33, Matthew 22:1–22

The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born.
Leviticus 19:34

Today's Scripture & Insight: Leviticus 19:32–37

Everything felt drastically different in their new country—new language, schools, customs, traffic, and weather. They wondered how they would ever adjust. People from a nearby church gathered around them to help them in their new life in a new land. Patti took the couple shopping at a local food market to show them what’s available and how to purchase items. As they wandered around the...More

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Like Our Great Teacher

Bible in a Year: Exodus 29–30, Matthew 21:23–46

The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.
Luke 6:40

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 6:37–42

In a viral video, a three-year-old white belt karate student imitated her instructor. With passion and conviction the little girl said the student creed with her leader. Then, with poise and attentiveness, the little ball of cuteness and energy imitated everything her teacher said and did—at least she did a pretty good job!

Jesus once said, “The student is...More

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Blessing in the Tears

Bible in a Year: Exodus 27–28, Matthew 21:1–22

Blessed are those who mourn.
Matthew 5:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 5:1–12

I received an email from a young man in England, a son who explained that his father (only sixty- three) was in the hospital in critical condition, hanging on to life. Though we’d never met, his dad’s work and mine shared many intersections. The son, trying to cheer his father, asked me to send a video message of encouragement and prayer. Deeply moved, I recorded a short message and a prayer for healing. I was told that his dad...More

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Sustainer of Blessings

Bible in a Year: Exodus 25–26, Matthew 20:17–34

Remember the Lord your God.
Deuteronomy 8:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Deuteronomy 8:10–18

On January 15, 1919, a huge molasses tank burst in Boston. A fifteen-foot wave of more than two million gallons of molasses careened through the street at over 30 mph, sweeping away railcars, buildings, people, and animals. Molasses might seem harmless enough, but that day it was deadly: 21 people lost their lives with more than 150 injured.

Sometimes even good things—like molasses—can overwhelm us unexpectedly....More

Monday, January 30, 2023

Running on Empty

Bible in a Year: Exodus 23–24, Matthew 20:1–16

They will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:31

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 40:28–31

“I just don’t think I can do this anymore,” my friend said through her tears as she discussed the overwhelming sense of hopelessness she faced as a nurse in a global health crisis. “I know that God has called me to nursing, but I’m overwhelmed and emotionally drained,” she confessed. Seeing that a cloud of exhaustion had come over her, I responded, “I know you feel helpless right...More

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Seven Minutes of Terror

Bible in a Year: Exodus 21–22, Matthew 19

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Hebrews 4:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 11:38–43

When the Mars rover Perseverance landed on that red planet on February 18, 2021, those monitoring its arrival endured “seven minutes of terror.” As the spacecraft ended its 292-million-mile journey, it went through a complex landing procedure it had to do on its own. Signals from Mars to Earth take several minutes, so NASA couldn’t...More

Saturday, January 28, 2023

The Pink Coat

Bible in a Year: Exodus 19–20, Matthew 18:21–35

Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give . . . for God loves a cheerful giver.
2 Corinthians 9:7

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 9:6–9

Brenda was walking toward the mall exit when a flush of pink from a display window caught her eye. She turned and stood spellbound before a “cotton-candy-colored coat.” Oh, how Holly would love it! Finances had been tight for her coworker friend who was a single mother, and while Brenda knew Holly needed a warm coat, she was also confident that...More

Friday, January 27, 2023

Mercy for You and Me

Bible in a Year: Exodus 16–18, Matthew 18:1–20

He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever.
Psalm 103:9

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 103:8–12

One of consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic was the docking of cruise ships and the quarantining of passengers. The Wall Street Journal featured an article that included interviews of some of the tourists. Commenting about how being quarantined provided more opportunities for conversations, one passenger joked how his spouse—who possessed an excellent memory—was able to bring up every transgression he...More

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Love That Forgives

Bible in a Year: Exodus 14–15, Matthew 17

Bear with each other and forgive one another.
Colossians 3:13

Today's Scripture & Insight: Colossians 3:12–14

Eighty years of marriage! My husband’s great-uncle Pete and great-aunt Ruth celebrated this remarkable milestone on May 31, 2021. After a chance meeting in 1941 when Ruth was still in high school, the young couple were so eager to get married that they eloped the day after Ruth graduated. Pete and Ruth believe God brought them together and has guided them all these years.

Reflecting on eight decades of...More

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Fighting “Flashy” Things

Bible in a Year: Exodus 12–13, Matthew 16

Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Proverbs 22:1–6

In the 1960s-era TV series The Andy Griffith Show, a man tells Andy he should let his son Opie decide how he wants to live. Andy disagrees: “You can’t let a young’un decide for himself. He’ll grab at the first flashy thing with shiny ribbons on it. Then, when he finds out there’s a hook in it, it’s too late. Wrong ideas come packaged with so much glitter that...More

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

No Loss

Bible in a Year: Exodus 9–11, Matthew 15:21–29

The kingdom of heaven is like treasure.
Matthew 13:44

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 13:44–46

My friend Ruel attended a high school reunion held in a former classmate’s home. The waterfront mansion near Manila Bay could accommodate two hundred attendees, and it made Ruel feel small.

“I’ve had many happy years of pastoring remote rural churches,” Ruel told me, “and even though I know I shouldn’t, I couldn’t help but feel envious of my classmate’s material wealth. My thoughts strayed to how...More

Monday, January 23, 2023

Lost, Found, Joy

Bible in a Year: Exodus 7–8, Matthew 15:1–20

Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.
Luke 15:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Luke 15:1–10

“They call me ‘the ringmaster.’ So far this year I’ve found 167 lost rings.”

During a walk on the beach with my wife, Cari, we struck up a conversation with an older man who was using a metal detector to scan an area just below the surf line. “Sometimes rings have names on them,” he explained, “and I love seeing their owners’ faces when I return them. I post online and check to see if anyone...More

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Reaching Out

Bible in a Year: Exodus 4–6, Matthew 14:22–36

He reached down from on high and took hold of me.
Psalm 18:16

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 18:16–19

In a recent post, blogger Bonnie Gray recounted the moment when overwhelming sadness began to creep into her heart. “Out of the blue,” she stated, “during the happiest chapter in my life, . . . I suddenly started experiencing panic attacks and depression.” Gray tried to find different ways to address her pain, but she soon realized that she wasn’t strong enough to handle it alone. “I hadn’t wanted anyone...More

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Coffee Breath

Bible in a Year: Exodus 1–3, Matthew 14:1–21

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
Ephesians 4:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ephesians 4:1–5, 25–31

I was sitting in my chair one morning years ago when my youngest came downstairs. She made a beeline for me, jumping up onto my lap. I gave her a fatherly squeeze and a gentle kiss on the head, and she squealed with delight. But then she furrowed her brow, crinkled her nose, and shot an accusatory glance at my coffee mug. “Daddy,” she announced solemnly. “I love you,...More

Friday, January 20, 2023

Love like Blazing Fire

Bible in a Year: Genesis 49–50, Matthew 13:31–58

[Love] burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame.
Song of Songs 8:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Song of Songs 8:5–7

Poet, painter, and printmaker William Blake enjoyed a forty-five-year marriage with his wife, Catherine. From their wedding day until his death in 1827, they worked side by side. Catherine added color to William’s sketches, and their devotion endured years of poverty and other challenges. Even in his final weeks as his health failed, Blake kept at his art, and his final sketch was his wife’s face....More

Thursday, January 19, 2023

But I’m Telling You

Bible in a Year: Genesis 46–48, Matthew 13:1–30

But I tell you, love your enemies.
Matthew 5:44

Today's Scripture & Insight: Matthew 5:43–48

“I know what they’re saying. But I’m telling you . . .” As a boy, I heard my mother give that speech a thousand times. The context was always peer pressure. She was trying to teach me not to follow the herd. I’m not a boy any longer, but herd mentality’s still alive and kicking. A current example is this phrase: “Only surround yourself with positive people.” Now while that phrase may be commonly heard, the...More

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Heart Problem

Bible in a Year: Genesis 43–45, Matthew 12:24–50

The Sovereign Lord says: Repent! Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices!
Ezekiel 14:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Ezekiel 14:1–8

“Do you see it, brother Tim?” My friend, a Ghanaian pastor, flashed his torchlight on a carved object leaning against a mud hut. Quietly he said, “That is the village idol.” Each Tuesday evening, Pastor Sam traveled into the bush to share the Bible in this remote village.

In the book of Ezekiel, we see how idolatry plagued the people of Judah. When...More

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Never Late

Bible in a Year: Genesis 41–42, Matthew 12:1–23

Your brother will rise again.
John 11:23

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 11:17–27

As a visitor to a small West African town, my American pastor made sure to arrive on time for a 10 a.m. Sunday service. Inside the humble sanctuary, however, he found the room empty. So he waited. One hour. Two hours. Finally, about 12:30 p.m., when the local pastor arrived after his long walk there—followed by some choir members and a gathering of friendly town people—the service began “in the fullness of time,” as my...More

Monday, January 16, 2023

Be Filled

Bible in a Year: Genesis 39–40, Matthew 11

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Matthew 5:6

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 58:6–12

The horrific assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. happened at the height of the American civil rights movement of the 1960s. But just four days later, his widow Coretta Scott King courageously took her husband’s place in leading a peaceful protest march. Coretta had a deep passion for justice and was a fierce champion of many causes.

Jesus said, “Blessed are those who...More

Sunday, January 15, 2023

From Lament to Praise

Bible in a Year: Genesis 36–38, Matthew 10:21–42

I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.
Habakkuk 3:18

Today's Scripture & Insight: Habakkuk 3:17–19

Monica prayed feverishly for her son to return to God. She wept over his wayward ways and even tracked him down in the various cities where he chose to live. The situation seemed hopeless. Then one day it happened: her son had a radical encounter with God. He became one of the greatest theologians of the church. We know him as Augustine, Bishop of Hippo.

“How long, Lord?” (Habakkuk...More

Saturday, January 14, 2023

A New Beginning

Bible in a Year: Genesis 33–35, Matthew 10:1–20

Save me, Lord, from lying lips and from deceitful tongues.
Psalm 120:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 120:1–121:2

“Christian consciousness begins in the painful realization that what we had assumed was the truth is in fact a lie,” Eugene Peterson wrote in his powerful reflections on Psalm 120. Psalm 120 is the first of the Psalms of Ascents (Psalms 120–134) sung by pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem. And as Peterson explored this in A Long Obedience in the Same Direction, these psalms also offer us a picture of...More

Friday, January 13, 2023

The Crowd

Bible in a Year: Genesis 31–32, Matthew 9:18–38

I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for [my people’s] sake.
Romans 9:3

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 9:1–5

“Men have been found to resist the most powerful monarchs and to refuse to bow down before them,” observed philosopher and author Hannah Arendt (1906–75). She added, “[B]ut few indeed have been found to resist the crowd, to stand up alone before misguided masses, to face their implacable frenzy without weapons.” As a Jew, Arendt witnessed this firsthand in her native...More

Thursday, January 12, 2023

The Rest of Our Story

Bible in a Year: Genesis 29–30, Matthew 9:1–17

Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, . . . has triumphed.
Revelation 5:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Revelation 5:1–10

For more than six decades, news journalist Paul Harvey was a familiar voice on American radio. He would say with a colorful flair, “You know what the news is, in a minute you’re going to hear the rest of the story.” After a brief advertisement, he would tell a little-known story of a well-known person. But by withholding until the end either the person’s name or...More

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Out of the Lions’ Den

Bible in a Year: Genesis 27–28, Matthew 8:18–34

My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions.
Daniel 6:22

Today's Scripture & Insight: Daniel 6:10–23

When Taher and his wife, Donya, became believers in Jesus, they knew they risked persecution in their home country. Indeed, one day Taher was blindfolded, handcuffed, imprisoned, and charged with apostasy. Before he appeared at trial, he and Donya agreed that they wouldn’t betray Jesus.

What happened at the sentencing amazed him. The judge said, “I don’t know why, but I want to take you out...More

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

The God Who Redeems

Bible in a Year: Genesis 25–26, Matthew 8:1–17

Do not fear, for I have redeemed you.
Isaiah 43:1

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 43:1–7

As part of a sermon illustration, I walked toward the beautiful painting an artist had been creating on the platform and made a dark streak across the middle of it. The congregation gasped in horror. The artist simply stood by and watched as I defaced what she’d created. Then, selecting a new brush, she lovingly transformed the ruined painting into an exquisite work of art.

Her restorative work reminds me of the work...More

Monday, January 9, 2023

The Right Jesus

Bible in a Year: Genesis 23–24, Matthew 7

If someone...preaches a [false] Jesus other than the Jesus we preached,...you [wrongly] put up with it.
2 Corinthians 11:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: 2 Corinthians 11:1–4, 12–15

The buzz in the room faded to a comfortable silence as the book club leader summarized the novel the group would discuss. My friend Joan listened closely but didn’t recognize the plot. Finally, she realized she had read a nonfiction book with a similar title to the work of fiction the others had read. Although she enjoyed reading the “wrong”...More

Sunday, January 8, 2023

More than Conquerors

Bible in a Year: Genesis 20–22, Matthew 6:19–34

In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Romans 8:37

Today's Scripture & Insight: Romans 8:31–39

When my husband coached our son’s Little League baseball team, he rewarded the players with an end-of-year party and acknowledged their improvement over the season. One of our youngest players, Dustin, approached me during the event. “Didn’t we lose the game today?”

“Yes,” I said. “But we’re proud of you for doing your best.”

“I know,” he said....More

Saturday, January 7, 2023

Who Are You, Lord?

Bible in a Year: Genesis 18–19, Matthew 6:1–18

“Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.
Acts 9:5

Today's Scripture & Insight: Acts 9:1–9

At age sixteen, Luis Rodriguez had already been in jail for selling crack. But now, arrested for attempted murder, he was in prison again—looking at a life sentence. But God spoke into his guilty circumstances. Behind bars, young Luis remembered his early years when his mother had faithfully taken him to church. He now felt God tugging at his heart. Luis eventually repented of his sins and came to Jesus.

In the book of Acts,...More

Friday, January 6, 2023

Made for Adventure

Bible in a Year: Genesis 16–17, Matthew 5:27–48

Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it.
Genesis 1:28

Today's Scripture & Insight: Genesis 1:21–28

I recently made a wonderful discovery. Following a dirt path into a cluster of trees near my home, I found a hidden homemade playground. A ladder made of sticks led up to a lookout, swings made from old cable spools hung from branches, and there was even a suspension bridge slung between boughs. Someone had turned some old wood and rope into a creative adventure!

Swiss physician Paul...More

Thursday, January 5, 2023

A Nesting Place

Bible in a Year: Genesis 13–15, Matthew 5:1–26

I am going there to prepare a place for you.
John 14:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: John 14:1–4

Sand martins—small birds related to swallows—dig their nests into riverbanks. Land development in South East England reduced their habitat, and the birds had fewer and fewer places to nest when they returned from their winter migration each year. Local conservationists sprang into action and built an enormous artificial sandbank to house them. With the help of a sand-sculpting firm, they molded sand to create a space for...More

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

New Vision

Bible in a Year: Genesis 10–12, Matthew 4

I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.
Isaiah 43:19

Today's Scripture & Insight: Isaiah 43:18–21

Wearing my new eyeglasses as I stepped into the sanctuary, I sat down and spotted a friend sitting directly across the aisle on the other side of the church. As I waved at her, she looked so near and clear. It felt like I could reach out and touch her even though she was several yards away. Later, as we talked following the service, I realized she was in the same seat she always sat in. I simply could see...More

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Rescue Mission

Bible in a Year: Genesis 7–9, Matthew 3

Lord, I wait for you; you will answer, Lord my God.
Psalm 38:15

Today's Scripture & Insight: Psalm 38:11–22

Volunteers at a farm animal rescue organization in Australia found a wandering sheep weighed down by more than seventy-five pounds of filthy, matted wool. Rescuers suspected the sheep had been forgotten and lost in the bush for at least five years. Volunteers soothed him through the uncomfortable process of shearing away his heavy fleece. Once freed from his burden, Baarack ate. His legs grew stronger. He became more...More

Monday, January 2, 2023

A Small Start

Bible in a Year: Genesis 4–6, Matthew 2

Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small..., out of you will come...[a] ruler over Israel.
Micah 5:2

Today's Scripture & Insight: Micah 5:2–4

The Brooklyn Bridge was considered “the eighth wonder of the world” upon its completion in 1883. But a single, slender wire strung from one bridge tower to the other was essential for the structure to come to fruition. Additional wires were added to the first until a massive cable, along with three others, was woven together. When finished, each cable—composed of more than five...More

Sunday, January 1, 2023

Choose Joy

Bible in a Year: Genesis 1–3, Matthew 1

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!
Philippians 4:4

Today's Scripture & Insight: Philippians 1:12–21

Keith was feeling down as he trudged through the produce aisle. His hands trembled from the first signs of Parkinson’s disease. How long before his quality of life began to slide? What would this mean for his wife and children? Keith’s gloom was shattered by laughter. Over by the potatoes, a man pushed a giggling boy in a wheelchair. The man leaned over and whispered to his son, who couldn’t stop...More

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