Daily Devotionals

Just as He Had Done Before

Just as He Had Done Before

Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before. (Dan. 6:10) Imagine you are a pastor in a closed country. Your phone rings, it is the secret police. They order you to come to the police station without any...
Our Humility Honors God

Our Humility Honors God

You save the humble but bring low those whose eyes are haughty. (Ps. 18:27) I HAD A SUPERVISOR when I worked in a retail store who was always talking about how great he was, how much the company loved him, and the fact that he was the favorite among the regional...
What Not To Do

What Not To Do

And those who walk in pride he is able to humble. (Dan. 4:37) LEADERSHIP HAS ITS CHALLENGES. For me, one of these challenges has been in the area of pride. Recently, I stepped down from a leadership position I held at my church because God was leading me into other...
The Path to Restoration

The Path to Restoration

I was restored to my throne and became even greater than before. Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and glorify the King of heaven. (Dan. 4:36–37) YOU KNOW THE FEELING you get after you have had a falling out with a loved one? Now, think of the feeling you get...
Humility Leads to Repentance

Humility Leads to Repentance

At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven. . . . Then I praised the Most High . . . and glorified him who lives forever. (Dan. 4:34) I WAS IN MY EARLY TWENTIES and found myself experiencing the negative results of a few decisions I had...
Consequences Become Reality

Consequences Become Reality

Immediately what had been said about Nebuchadnezzar was fulfilled. (Dan. 4:33) “GOD’S TIMING IS PERFECT.” This statement is something that I not only say but wholeheartedly believe. I talk about God’s timing in regard to my own life as well as others’. Even this past...
Remember the Instructions

Remember the Instructions

The words were still on his lips when a voice came from heaven . . . “Your royal authority has been taken from you.” (Dan. 4:31) AS A CHILD, I liked pushing limits. My parents have told stories about times when I was given specific instructions not to do something but...
Undeserved Glory

Undeserved Glory

He said, “Is not this the great Babylon I have built . . . by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty?” (Dan. 4:30) WORKING IN MISSIONS, I get to walk alongside individuals, couples, and families in their journeys as they explore the possibility of a career in...
A Worry-Free Commute

A Worry-Free Commute

Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods. (Ps. 40:4) MY WIFE’S CAR has been a tremendous disappointment. We bought a brand-new vehicle this time because I reasoned that the higher sticker...
Being a Good Follow

Being a Good Follow

“They trusted in him . . . and were willing to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except their own God.” (Dan. 3:28) I STUDIED THE ARGENTINE TANGO IN COLLEGE. The male partner customarily leads, but my trainer insisted that I learn to follow too....
It’s a God Thing

It’s a God Thing

They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed. (Dan. 3:27) I WAS CONFUSED when a friend insisted on providing my family a sumptuous holiday feast, claiming God had impressed upon her to do so. We live on a tight budget, but...
Pyriscent Faith

Pyriscent Faith

He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.” (Dan. 3:25) IT’S EERIE DRIVING through the ancient Lost Pines Forest near my home in central Texas. Years ago the woods were ravaged by the...
Facing the Burn Zone

Facing the Burn Zone

The king’s command was so urgent and the furnace so hot that the flames . . . killed the soldiers who took up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. (Dan. 3:22) I’VE SEEN THE INSIDE of our brick plant’s industrial kiln. If you peer through a tiny opening in the door, you can...
Rehearsal Room Trust

Rehearsal Room Trust

“The God we serve is able to save us. . . . But even if he does not . . . we will not serve your gods.” (Dan. 3:17–18) A GOOD CONDUCTOR makes his or her mark in the rehearsal room not the concert hall. The audience sees the conductor merely keeping time for the...
No Stock Deities

No Stock Deities

“Whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.” (Dan. 3:6) I REMEMBER A BILLBOARD I used to pass on my morning commute. It promoted the services of a local spa and featured the image of a smiling, attractive young woman. It...
See Me

See Me

Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O Lord. (Ps. 25:7) WHEN I GET AN IDEA, I like to do something about it. So when I decided that the living room should be a different color, I went to the...
It’ll All Work Out

It’ll All Work Out

In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom. (Dan. 1:20) “IT’LL ALL WORK OUT.” That line is somewhat of a classic in our house, sort of a...
For a Purpose

For a Purpose

To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds. (Dan. 1:17) I WAS A BOOKISH SORT OF GIRL. My brothers had to be called in from the barn for supper. I had...
The Good Life

The Good Life

At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. (Dan. 1:15) AS A YOUNG PERSON, I often had the opportunity to hear speakers at my church who had dramatic conversion stories—former drug addicts,...
Standing Behind God

Standing Behind God

“Please test your servants for ten days.” (Dan. 1:12) WEARING EYEGLASSES when you have four small children poses a problem. Anything a young mother owns is going to be grabbed, dropped, sat on, and played with—especially if it’s sitting on the front of her face. I...
It’s Not You

It’s Not You

Now God had caused the official to show favor and sympathy to Daniel. (Dan. 1:9) MY PARENTS ARE INCREDIBLE PEOPLE. Though they didn’t start out with much—both were immigrants from Europe to Canada after World War II—they built a wonderful life, successful career, and...
Resolve vs. Permission

Resolve vs. Permission

But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. (Dan. 1:8) FALL IS THE TIME for electioneering, and I have to be honest with you: I can’t stand it! I’ve long since...
Hope and Dependability

Hope and Dependability

But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love. (Ps. 33:18) WHENEVER OUR CHURCH was in a tight spot—relational, financial, or spiritual—everyone looked to Charlie to offer godly wisdom. He was a great listener. He was...
New Hope, Fresh Start

New Hope, Fresh Start

“I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.’” (Ezek. 37:14) MY GRANDMOTHER NEARLY gave up on being married to my grandfather, and no one...