Use this devo as you are able, in whole or in part. Don’t feel compelled to read it all. Simply read and meditate upon whatever catches your attention. The goal is enjoying time with God through His Word and in prayer. Questions about the devotional elements?

Call to Prayer

“How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path.” (Ps. 119:103-104)

Prayer of Confession

Providing God, I easily doubt that you’ll provide whatever I need for body and soul, and I can’t imagine how the adversity you send my way could be turned to good. Help me to let go of my need to control and instead entrust my life and future to your care. Keep me fully aware that you have the power to provide because you are almighty God, and the heart to do so because you are my faithful Father through Christ your Son. Amen. (Prayer based on the Heidelberg Catechism, Question 26)

*Prayer borrowed from Philip Reinders’ Seeking God’s Face: Praying with the Bible through the Year

Reading Plan

This reading plan will help you to develop the habit of being in God’s Word each morning and evening. Come to this time with expectation. Expect God to reveal himself to you. Expect that he delights in you being there, even when you’ve wandered away. Growing a spiritual habit is a slow, patient process. So be kind to yourself as you grow! 

Readings are hyperlinked. Simply hover over the passage or click Morning/Evening Reading (email version).

Morning Readings:

Pray Psalm 9 | Read Romans 2

  • Praying the Psalms: Read slowly. Take note of words and phrases. Bring them before the Lord in prayer and personalize the passage as you pray.
  • NT Context:The letter to the Romans is a piece of exuberant and passionate thinking. This is the glorious life of the mind enlisted in the service of God. Paul takes the well-witnessed and devoutly believed fact of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth and thinks through its implications. How does it happen that in the death and resurrection of Jesus, world history took a new direction, and at the same moment the life of every man, woman, and child on the planet was eternally affected? What is God up to? What does it mean that Jesus “saves”? What’s behind all this, and where is it going?Meditate on the passage, noting a few words or a phrase that stood out. Take them to God in prayer.

Evening Readings:

Pray Psalm 10 | Read 2 Chronicles 8

  • OT Context: “Sovereignty, God’s sovereignty, is one of the most difficult things for people of faith to live out in everyday routines…This story makes it clear that it was not God’s idea that the Hebrews have a king, but since they insisted, he let them have their way. But God never abdicated his sovereignty to any of the Hebrew kings; the idea was that they would represent his sovereignty, not that he would delegate his sovereignty to them. Reflect on the passage. Who was the original audience, and what was their situation? How is that relevant to you today?

Sermon Devo

Our Winter series in the Book of James begins this week. Each day we will dig into a different aspect of this New Testament wisdom book which will, by the end of the week, help to give you a fuller portrait of the kind of lives we are called to live as Christians.  passage that will be preached on Sunday.  

Read: James 1:13-18

Last week we saw how (1) suffering in life is inevitable; (2) how James directs us to draw true wisdom from our suffering; (3) that the only way to get this “true wisdom” is by asking God who gladly gives it (that is, he gives it to those who humbly stop pretending they can draw the right conclusions about their suffering on their own).

This week we are going to be in a passage that is primarily about our proclivity toward sin, how trials and temptation intersect, the contrasting ways that sin and God’s life-giving words are conceived in us, and much more. 

But before we explore the depths of this short section of James, let’s take some time to start the week by asking…

  1. What stood out to you as you read today?
  1. What point does James seem to be making?
  1. How does this portion of Scripture connect to what came before? How does it connect to what comes after?
  1. What didn’t make sense? What do you still wonder about? 

Evening Prayer of Examen

  • Where did you move with or feel close to Jesus today?
  • Where did you resist or feel far from Jesus today?
  • Where is Jesus leading you tomorrow? Ask for joy as you follow him.

Benediction

“Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” (Ps. 25:4-5)

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