Today’s Bible passages are: Exodus 22, John 1, Job 40, and 2 Corinthians 10

John 1 by Erin LeighBy Erin Leigh

Today’s art is a response to John 1:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

 

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

 

The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

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Today’s Bible passages are: Exodus 11, Luke 14, Job 29, and 1 Corinthians 15

By Hannah Anderson

Job 29 image“Why do bad things happen to good people?” If you’ve ever asked yourself this question, let me assure you that you are not the first. Human beings have been wrestling with the question of suffering and personal choice since the Fall, and most of the time, coming up miserably short.

For example, in the face of Job’s suffering, his three friends assumed, like many today, that it was the result of personal sin. When Job tries to assure them that he has no known sin in his life, Bildad responds in typical fashion, “Yes, but who can really be righteous?” (chapter 25) In today’s language, “Okay, but we’re all sinners and so anything bad that happens to us is deserved anyway.” The bottom line? Your suffering is always your fault. And by extension, when other people suffer, in some way, it is their own fault too.

I think a lot of us see the weakness in this answer. We’re experienced enough to know that life is complicated, that some of us are born with certain privileges, that not all suffering is the result of bad choices.… Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Exodus 10, Luke 13, Job 28, and 1 Corinthians 14

By Stacy Sharpe

Job 28The morning of January 24, 1848 would forever change the landscape of California.

As carpenter, James Marshall, inspected the water-powered sawmill he was building for a guy named John Sutter, he happened to spot some shiny flecks of metal in the river below that “made my heart thump, for I was certain it was gold.”

Confirmation that there really was gold in them thar hills soon ushered a stampede of epic proportion to the Golden State.  The only prescription for the ensuing gold fever proved getting a piece of the action.  Throughout 1849, thousands of would-be miners across the nation borrowed money, mortgaged their property or spent their life savings to make the arduous journey to California and stake a claim.

In my home state, this lure of quick money which created an historical scramble for mineral wealth, is commonly referred to as The Gold Rush.

Momentarily forgetting his sorrows in chapter 28 (and sounding a lot like King Solomon), Job vividly recounts such earnest efforts to tap Creation for its priceless God-given resources:

“He (man) tunnels through the rock;
his eyes see all its treasures.

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Today’s Bible passages are: Exodus 1, Luke 4, Job 18, and 1 Corinthians 5

Luke 4By Amylee Weeks

Today’s art is a response to Luke 4:

And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.’” And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, “To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written,

“‘You shall worship the Lord your God,
and him only shall you serve.’” (Luke 4:1-8, ESV)

Today’s Question: What things are you tempted to worship and serve, instead of worshiping and serving God?Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Genesis 46, Mark 16, Job 12, and Romans 16

job 12 - 1By Kelli Campbell

Today’s art is a response to Job 12:

“But ask the beasts, and they will teach you;

the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you;

or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you;

and the fish of the sea will declare to you.

Who among all these does not know

that the hand of the Lord has done this?

In his hand is the life of every living thing

and the breath of all mankind. (Job 12:7-10, ESV)

job 12 - 2


Kelli’s thoughts on her art follow:

This passage speaks to me as a photographer—one more comfortable observing the natural world than struggling through a scholarly treatise on nature. Recently, I have been slowly chewing on The Gospel According to Job by Mike Mason, and in reference to these verses he states, “nature still stands as His first and sufficient revelation, His first Gospel” (p 143.) The Bible tells us in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God,” and again in Romans 1:20, “For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world.” Job got it.… Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Genesis 43, Mark 13, Job 9, and Romans 13

genesis 43By Lisa Velthouse

ONE

Look at today, and you will see a woman getting ready. Clothes, hair, makeup, these shoes not those, snacks tossed into a purse for the kids, pile into the minivan, drive.

Look at today, and you will see that she and they are going to visit her husband, their daddy, at work.

***

Now, take a step outward and look again. Her dress is new and maybe a smidge more expensive than normal. She got up an hour early to ensure there’d be enough time for everyday mothering fiascoes and hair and makeup. The shoes are perfect. The snacks are favorites. The minivan has even been cleared out and vacuumed.

They are going to visit her husband, their daddy, at work. They drive through the security gate and make their way toward the parking lot.

***

One more step outward.

The dress is his favorite color. Her hair and makeup are styled just the way he likes it best. The shoes are a great match, sure, but (equally importantly) they’re great for running and for seeing above a crowd. Snacks will be essential—they’ll help burn time while fueling these unending excited jitters.… Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Genesis 40, Mark 10, Job 6, and Romans 10

mark 10By Brenda Chance

If you met up with me in an airport, commanding your attention would be my luggage; it is large and in charge. I’m the little girl with the big bag.

Friends snicker. The family rolls their eyes. The rental car agent is indignant when I need a car with a more spacious trunk. I endure the ridicule of my bigger-than-me baggage because when others find they’ve left behind toothpaste, socks, or a matching purse, I will have them. In travel and in life, I like to be prepared for anything…and everything.

Or at least that’s my positive spin. Truthfully, I’m a control freak.

Like most control freaks, I have fancy ways of dressing up my controlling ways: I’m efficient. I’m conscientious. I’m a pursuer of excellence.

However, like the quickly fleeting green flash at sunset, I sometimes glimpse a truer picture of who I am: I am a self-proclaimed ruler doing everything I can to keep my little kingdom going. Having everything in its place, lacking nothing, and leaving no space for surprises are the intangibles of my rule. Never panic. Never beg. Keep calm and carry on.Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Genesis 35-36, Mark 6, Job 2, and Romans 6

mark 6By Patty Kirk

The account of Jesus’ rejection by the people of his own town gets at a faith problem a lot of us struggle with: not really understanding and accepting our own power as believers. Mark writes that, after Jesus preaches in Nazareth—among the people he grew up with, including his own sisters and brothers—“many who heard him were amazed.” So amazed, we learn a few lines later, that “they took offense at him” (Mark 6:2-3 NIV).

A few lines after that in Mark’s story, Jesus is also “amazed at their lack of faith” (Mark 6:6). He’s probably offended too, judging from what he tells them. “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town,” he remarks disgustedly, even “among his relatives and in his own home” (Mark 6:4).

The word “amazed,” here, is actually two different words in the Greek of Mark’s account, but translators appear to regard the Greek words as synonyms, since most translations don’t significantly distinguish Jesus’ and the Nazarenes’ reactions from each other. If you ask me, though, in neither instance does our English word amazed—or astonished or astounded, as some translations have it—get at what’s really at issue here.… Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: Genesis 17, Matthew 16, Nehemiah 6, and Acts 16

01152014_ELBy Erin Leigh

Um, how have I never noticed this before?
Peter. Stumbling, bumbling Peter says
You are the Son of the LIVING God.
He gets it. He gets that this God of ours
who became flesh so that we might catch a glimpse of his glory here on earth,
he gets that this Jesus is LIVING and active and transforming.
he gets that apart from Him, I can do nothing.
And before Jesus has been raised from the dead
He gets that Jesus has come so that he can breathe life into this body of flesh.
He didn’t come so that I would follow the rules better.
He didn’t come to make me feel bad that I can’t follow the rules.
He came for me, because I can’t follow the rules good enough.
ever.
He came that I would have LIFE,
and have it in ABUNDANCE.
He came so that when he asks me,
“I don’t really care what everyone else is saying about me,
Who do you say that I am {with your life}?”
I start by answering,
“Um, I’ll be better. I’ll be nicer and I’ll get another Compassion child.… Continue Reading

Today’s Bible passages are: 2 Chronicles 19-20, Revelation 8, Zechariah 4, and John 7

By Erin Leigh

Zechariah 4

Today’s post is a response to Zechariah 4:
And the angel who talked with me came again and woke me, like a man who is awakened out of his sleep. And he said to me, “What do you see?” I said, “I see, and behold, a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and seven lamps on it, with seven lips on each of the lamps that are on the top of it. And there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left.” And I said to the angel who talked with me, “What are these, my lord?” Then the angel who talked with me answered and said to me, “Do you not know what these are?” I said, “No, my lord.” Then he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts. Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it!’” (Zechariah 4:1-7, ESV)
Following are Erin Leigh’s thoughts on the passage:

This verse always speaks to my flesh.… Continue Reading