Arts and Culture
More from Google
Add by RSS Feed
Get the Android app
Get the iOS app
Guidelines For Living Devotional
Start your day off right by spending some time with God. In this daily, 5-minute devotional, you'll get encouragement from the Bible along with practical tips on how to live out your faith.
12 hours ago
Lest We Forget
When we fail to remember the past, we are condemned to repeat our mistakes and failures, whether it be nationally, personally, or spiritually. Do you believe that? Even before the alphabet was developed in the Tigris-Euphrates river valley, parents passed on to their children the truths which they wanted preserved. Oral history, we call it today. Sometimes the stories were myths but most of them were factual—who did what and what happened to whom. Those oral traditions included God's dealings with people, and family history—battles that were fought, marriages which produced offspring, and cataclysmic events such as earthquakes, famines, and floods.
1 day ago
When We Fall Short
It was not without some scientific basis that the prophet Micah, some seven centuries before Christ, exclaimed, "Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance?" Micah believed that God would have compassion and would "hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea" (Micah 7:18-19).
2 days ago
Overcoming A Major Blunder
Long ago the writer of Scripture told us that he who does not offend in word or deed is a perfect man; and obviously, none of us qualifies. No matter how loving or kind you are, sooner or later you offend someone. You say or do something you know is wrong. More likely it is a protracted dalliance with your conscience, but then you crash and burn. That's when you come to the fork in the road. Do you do what is convenient and try to deny the whole issue, or admit it and find help? Sweeping the wrong aside, justifying yourself as being "human," is the path of convenience, and it's a well trod one, but it isn't a lasting solution which heals your brokenness.
3 days ago
The Boy Who Saved Paul’s Life
What you say can get you into far more trouble than what you do! Have you discovered that? It's much like the advice that the mother whale gave her young: "It's when you are spouting that you always get into trouble!"
4 days ago
Since the days that Christians worshipped in the catacombs to avoid persecution, the fish has been a symbol of Christianity, just as the star of David is a symbol of Judaism and the crescent symbolizes Islam. Visitors to the Calixitus catacombs outside of Rome, see the symbol carved in the limestone walls where Christians once met and worshipped. Many throughout the world still display the fish—whether it is lapel pin or a small insignia on the bumper of a car—to indicate their faith as Christians.
Jan 8, 2021
Nearly 3,000 years ago the psalmist, David, wrote, "I praise Thee because I have been fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous is Thy workmanship as my soul is well aware" (Psalm 139:14). But just how wonderfully made man really is has come to light only in the past century as science has began to unlock the secrets of the human body. The human body, according to medical science, contains 37 trillion cells that reproduce themselves every seven years. Each one of the 37 trillion cells performs 10,000 different chemical functions, according to the late Dr. Ralph Byron of the City of Hope Cancer Clinic, yet all of them just work together to produce a healthy body.
Jan 7, 2021
Challenged Faith: Walk In Obedience
Have you ever cried out, "Lord, I just can't handle this!"? Maybe you have never said those words audibly, but you have felt that way in your heart. Eventually it happens to everyone. I have suggested some guidelines that can help you when you feel like crying out, "Lord, I can't handle this." Guideline #1: Strengthen your faith by going to the Word of God, which cannot fail. Guideline #2: When your faith is challenged, refuse to relinquish what you know to be true. Guideline #3: When your faith is challenged, turn to the Lord, but do not turn on the Lord.
Jan 6, 2021
Challenged Faith: Turn Toward God
Henrietta Mears, an outstanding Christian leader whose life inspired thousands of men and women, used to say that a college student who gave up his faith had not lost his or her faith. She contended that the person never had any faith to begin with. Life has a way of challenging the foundation of your faith, whether it is by circumstance or factors over which you have no control, and you cry, "Lord, I just can't handle this!" When your heart cries out in pain, there are some things you must do to undergo spiritual rehabilitation.
Jan 5, 2021
Challenged Faith: Remember What You Know
What do you do when your faith is tested? Do you blame God and run the other way? Or do you begin spiritual rehabilitation and look beyond the immediate challenge for strength and help which you do not possess? I suggest that the first thing to do when your faith is challenged is to turn to the pages of God's Word and identify with people who have problems such as you have, and have found an answer. But do not stop there.
Jan 4, 2021
Facing Challenges To Faith
Eventually your faith will be challenged, no matter how strong or how weak it is. It may be challenged by an agnostic professor; or perhaps more likely it will be challenged by the trials of life. Sooner or later something happens and your heart cries out, "Lord, I just cannot handle this." It may be a child's illness, or a marriage that turns sour, or a business deal which has not gone well.
Jan 1, 2021
The One Thing To Remember About The New Year
Today is the first day of the year, and to be honest with you, it's almost a bit scary staring another year in the face. Looking behind we think, "What happened to the good intentions and resolutions we made a year ago—ones which we have not only failed in attaining but can't even remember what they were?"
Dec 31, 2020
3 Ways To Make Next Year Better Than This One
Another year is history, and the firm but often unseen hand of God has written another chapter in the history of mankind. Like the knots in a sailor's rope, or the trickle of sand through the hourglass, or the fenceposts along the highway, the coming of a new year is a marker in your life, in everyone's life. Interested in making this coming year better than the one past? Then today's three guidelines are just for you. Three phases: forget, remember, and press on.
Dec 30, 2020
A Prayer For The New Year
I did something I rarely do: I wrote a letter to God about the year that is upon us. I suspect some of my thoughts may mirror yours as well. Listen in.
Dec 29, 2020
Do It Now!
Michael Landon was a regular in the Sala household for many years. Every Sunday night after church, we headed for MacDonalds and then raced home in time for the program, Bonanza. Landon, who died in his prime, once said, "Whatever you want to do, do it now. There are only so many tomorrows." He’s right.
Dec 28, 2020
There Is Hope For Every Day Of The Year
Christmas is over, at least it is for most of you. However, in some places such as in Russia, Christmas is observed in early January. But no matter when you celebrate Christmas, there comes a time when it is over; and when it is over, it is over.
Dec 25, 2020
God Is With Us!
The two were arrested and thrown into prison. Days turned into weeks and weeks into months. China is a vast country, but what many do not realize is that in the northern part of China it gets very cold as the Siberian winds come whistling from the north.
Dec 24, 2020
The Ten Wonders Of Christmas
Over 365 names and inscriptions are found in the Bible referring to Jesus Christ, but none is more lovely than the one found in Isaiah where the prophet said, "His name shall be called WONDERFUL" (Isaiah 9:6, KJV). As a light that sparkles on a tree, the wonder of Christ can hardly be reduced to a treatment of a few minutes, but in that length of time I can give you the ten wonders of Christmas.
Dec 23, 2020
How Can I See God’s Glory?
When an American missionary wandered into an off-limits area of Burma, he was arrested and interrogated. Accused of being a CIA spy, he was placed in solitary confinement. After a few days, his captors gave him a Bible. For more than 80 days, Bob Purdue had nothing to do but sit on a prison cot and read the Bible.
Dec 22, 2020
Why God Chose A Baby
"I have often wondered," wrote Guy Duffield, "why the Roosevelts, the Rockefellers and the Kennedys wanted to go through all the agony and conflict of seeking and holding public offices. They certainly did not need the money. I think I have found the answer; it is self‑expression. It has been the desire of every human heart throughout history. A Michelangelo did it in marble; a Shakespeare with pen and ink; a Sir Christopher Wren achieved it in the more than 50 churches he designed and built."
Dec 21, 2020
What Mary And Joseph Knew
Childbirth is surely one of the most uncomfortable times in any woman's life. It's a time when a husband, at a loss to help with the actual birthing process, would want to provide the most comfortable environment for his laboring wife. But the Christmas Story, the accounts given us in the four Gospels, indicate that few comforts were Mary and Joseph's as they stopped in Bethlehem at a very vulnerable and physically uncomfortable time.
Dec 18, 2020
Are You Actually A Christian?
It was an old historic church and I was a young preacher who was honored to have been invited to speak for the Sunday service. My host was a gray-haired gentleman who had been in that church for more than 60 years so it was only natural that I wanted to extract as much wisdom and personal experience from him as I could muster.
Dec 17, 2020
Can God Really Do Anything?
Is there anything too hard for the Lord?" Some three times, that question is asked in Scripture. But how would you answer it? Today we are faced with a quandary. Either we nod our heads and say, "Yes! God can do anything," unsure of whether we really believe this, or else we are confronted with empty hands and hearts, wondering why God didn't step in and reverse some troublesome situations confronting us.
Dec 16, 2020
Here Is The Touch That Heals
Once you have seen the hand of God that reaches out towards His created subjects, you will never forget it. I'm thinking of the tremendous work done by Michelangelo in the Sistine chapel. In that simple depiction is the story of the entire Bible--God reaching out to touch us at the point of our needs. All theology only puts meaning to that truth. All history only demonstrates it. Unlike angry deities who must be satisfied with blood sacrifice--sometimes even the life of your firstborn--the God of the Bible is a loving God who reaches out to touch you at the point of your need, where you hurt.
Dec 15, 2020
How Do I Find God’s Will?
A certain woman wanting to join her church group going to Israel wondered if she should spend the money. "God," she prayed, "please give me a sign and show me what I should do." Placing the glossy brochure on her table beside the bed, she drifted off to sleep. Waking the next morning, she noticed the digital clock read 7:47 AM. "Didn't the brochure say we were traveling on a Boeing 747?" she asked herself as she picked up the brochure for another look.
Dec 14, 2020
What Is A Creed?
The industrialist Henry Ford used to say that he knew the Church was a divine institution because, contended Ford, no other organization so poorly organized and run would have survived for 2000 years. Going beyond the satire of what he said, there is a measure of truth behind that statement.
Dec 11, 2020
What To Look For In A Mate
"Keep your eyes open before marriage; half-shut afterwards," advised Ben Franklin many years ago. Keeping your eyes open before you are married is pretty good business. The fact is that most people don't really know the person they meet at the marriage altar, and then after the honeymoon, wake up and say, "This is not the person I thought I was marrying." Before you say, "Yes!" to marriage, ask yourself ten questions which can well help you determine if your relationship has what it takes to make a good marriage. If you are married, working through these ten issues can make yours a much better marriage.
Dec 10, 2020
Even God’s Best Get Depressed
If you are depressed, you may feel that no one else has been right where you are. You may think that if you were spiritual enough, you wouldn't struggle with depression.
Dec 9, 2020
When You Become A Victim Of Evil
After an arsonist burned down his church, Pastor Ted Cole picked his way through the charred rubble still smoldering from the fire and sat down at the piano. Defiantly he began playing an old hymn written more than four centuries ago by a man who knew trouble as well, Martin Luther. Cole began gently singing from memory the third verse of Luther's, "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God," which goes: "And tho this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us,/ We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph thru us."
Dec 8, 2020
Here Are The 3 Possible Answers To Prayer
Yes, No, and Wait! Those are the three possible answers to your prayers, so says conventional wisdom. I have thought a lot about the three-compartment answer‑‑ yes, no, and wait. At the introduction of today's Guidelines, I freely acknowledge that God does not answer all of my prayers the way I would like. Sometimes, in fact, He flatly denies what I have asked for. And I, for one, am quite glad that God does turn down some of my ardent requests, because as I later look back on some of the things I once asked for, I now realize that if God had given me just what I asked for I would have been most unhappy later on.
Dec 7, 2020
Is God Responsible For Everything That Happens?
"There is a divinity that shapes our ends, rough-hew them how we will," wrote William Shakespeare some 450 plus years ago. The Bard of Avon was not new in his contention that God has a will in the affairs of men and women—which puts to rest the idea that things happen by chance or by fate.
Dec 4, 2020
Why Our Tendency To Label People Is Wrong
When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her." John 8:7 Philip Yancey tells how he once visited a prison, and observed that the men who were incarcerated there were caged like animals behind doors of steel, but what left the lasting impression on him was that over each door was a sign stamped in large black letters which read: Murderer, Rapist, Armed Robber, Child beater, and on and on. The strange thing about human nature is that we all try to package and label people, and in so doing, we trap them inside a box as certainly as though we slammed the steel door shut, pinning the sign overhead. Was that not the same rationale when a sign was affixed to the cross in Latin, Greek, and Hebrew reading, "This is Jesus, the King of the Jews"?
Dec 3, 2020
Is There Such A Thing As Fate?
Is there such a thing as fate, or is fate simply the whipping-boy of human experience, a catch-all for what we cannot explain? The Mirriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary defines fate as "that which remains destined to happen." Our English word comes from the Latin fatum which meant something ordained from the gods. It grew out of a story from Greek mythology which involves three goddesses. The first, Clotho, or the Spinner, was supposed to weave the thread of life while the second, Lachesis, or the Disposer of Lots, determined the length of the thread. It was the third in the trilogy, Atrophos, or the Inflexible One, who allegedly cut the thread of life causing fate to strike its sinister blow.
Dec 2, 2020
Why You Should Cultivate Excellence In Your Life
The greatest accomplishments in life--believe it or not--are made not by the smartest people in the world but by those who didn't know enough to quit. They were the ones who kept plodding, who kept practicing, who kept investigating until they stumbled onto success. That fact was driven home to me when I was studying in the university. There were two men in my classes who were geniuses. Their IQs were way up there. At the end of a class, they slapped their books shut and didn't open them. They were smart.
Dec 1, 2020
God Gives Strength In The Broken Places
Ernest Hemingway, wrote, "The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places." In this, Hemmingway was right. Ours is an imperfect, broken world. You discover your spouse has been unfaithful to you for years. A doctor breaks the news that you have inoperable cancer and will lose your leg. Your son is arrested for drunk driving. Or, the promotion that you deserved went to someone less qualified.  Hemmingway, Ernest. "A Quote from A Farewell to Arms." Web. 29 Oct. 2020.
Nov 30, 2020
The 5 Critical Questions You Need Answers To
When a youth lost his way and ended up having squandered the inheritance he had received from his father, he came to his senses and said, "I'm starving here; I'm going home to my father." Jesus told the story. We call it the parable or the story of the lost son.
Nov 27, 2020
Finding Gratitude After Loss
John Wesley was all of six years old when fire broke out in the frame house where he and his large family lived. It was one of the most vivid memories of his life. John was trapped on the second floor, unable to get out. He stood there at the window terrified, afraid to jump.
Nov 26, 2020
3 Things Everyone Can Be Thankful For
"Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus," wrote a man who had known more than his fair share of difficulties. His name? We know him as Paul, the Apostle of Jesus Christ. In one sentence Paul gives us the key to unlocking the door to a relationship of blessedness and gratitude. He is saying in simple terms that thanksgiving is not a holiday to be celebrated but an attitude of your heart to be daily observed because no matter how difficult the circumstances of your life—whether you are in a hospital bed or enjoying health, wealth, and happiness—God is in control.
Nov 25, 2020
Don’t Forget To Give Thanks For This
Do you ever say, "Thank you, God!" for what could have happened to you but did not? The human tendency is to say, "Thank you!" for the wonderful things that happen like when you get a raise at work, or when someone gives you a well-deserved compliment, or your child's team wins; but what about giving thanks for what could have happened, but did not?
Nov 24, 2020
What To Forget And What To Remember
"In some parts of Mexico," writes James Hewett, "hot springs and cold springs are found side by side—and because of the convenience of this natural phenomenon the women often bring their laundry and boil their clothes in the hot springs and then rinse them in the cold ones." On one occasion a tourist, watching nature's laundromat, commented that "Mother Nature is pretty generous to supply such ample, clean hot and cold water here side by side for their free use." To his great surprise, however, the friend replied, "No señor, there is much grumbling because she supplies no soap."  James. S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1998), 262.
Nov 23, 2020
Are You Disagreeing Over Money?
There are only three things you can do with it: spend it, save it, or give it away. Only three choices. Yet when it comes to the bottom line of disagreements, you'll probably find it, almost every time. It's money! No matter how much they have, or how little they have, people don't agree on how it's spent. Playing a prominent part in at least 85% of all broken homes, the handling of money is one of the most explosive issues that confront people today, especially in times of recession and inflation.
Nov 20, 2020
What God Thinks About Tolerance
Question: On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the greatest, how tolerant are you? "Tolerant of what?" you might ask, thinking of politics, religion, sports, or intelligence. Most of us think of ourselves as being quite tolerant, and certainly if we are in the minority, we demand tolerance and respect as a kind of sacred right.
Nov 19, 2020
What Do You Believe About Hell?
There is something about believing in hell which is repugnant to the modern mind. Heaven? Sure! That's consistent with the picture of a loving God, one who cares far too much about us to turn anyone away from His door. Yes, we can abide the thought that God may punish His errant children as we human parents have to do--at least for a bit; but the idea of fire and brimstone, smoke, and torment reminds us more of the graphic imagery of Dante's The Divine Comedy than of John 3:16.
Nov 18, 2020
5 Steps To Growing In Grace
When Peter came to the end of writing the second book which bears his name, he gave some very practical advice. He ended by saying, "Be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men…" and "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." Notice the two words: guard and grow. That was the practical advice of a fisherman who knew that he had to defend his fishing grounds, but he couldn't spend all of his time keeping others out of what he felt belonged to him. He had to fish. He had to grow.
Nov 17, 2020
What Does It Mean To Take Up My Cross?
When Jesus called people, He interrupted their goals, their plans, their life works and their consciences as well. The more they know Him, the more they came to understand that following Jesus was not a part-time vocation but an absolute, all-encompassing commitment. And that is why on more than one occasion, some turned away and ceased to follow him.
Nov 16, 2020
Here Is How To Have Enough
Probably no other generation in history has been more committed to living for the moment than is our present one; or put in somewhat less refined terms, no generation has been more committed to squeezing every ounce of pleasure and fulfillment out of living than the present one. Now all of this is not bad, but the constant emphasis on self produces a distorted picture of the individual's true worth. The end result is a selfishness that produces a marked disregard for others, and totally distorts a person's actual importance. Nothing is much smaller than an individual's world who shuts others from the heart as well as the hand and purse.
Nov 13, 2020
JEHOVAH TSIDKENU: God, The Righteous One
As the darkness that shrouded Russia under Communism began to lift, thousands of people began to search for their spiritual roots. The following letter was sent to a fellow Christian broadcaster: "I do not know how to address you, that is, I do not know your name; but I do not think that is important. The fact is that I want to know definitely whether there is a God or are you just deceiving the people. If you are as certain about God's existence as you preach and sing about Him, then I straightway would want to believe in Him the same way as you do." The listener then begged for a Bible so he could read the record for himself.
Nov 12, 2020
JEHOVAH SHAMMAH: God, Who Is Present
Only those who have been through very difficult hard times can understand the reality of knowing that God had his hand on their lives, that He is the one who sustained and preserved them. That realization, of course, is humbling because when you have been through the fire and you made it, you know it wasn't your cleverness or your strength that brought you through. It had to be God.
Nov 11, 2020
JEHOVAH RA-AH: God, My Shepherd
"What I believe about God," said A. W. Tozer, "is the most important thing about me." He was right, but the problem is that most of us aren't really sure what we believe about Him. Most of our knowledge and images of God are second-hand leftovers from our parents, or bad experiences that we conclude are reflections of God.
Nov 10, 2020
JEHOVAH SHALOM: God Our Peace
In 1904 a massive, bronze statue of Christ with his arms outstretched to the harbor of Buenos Aires was erected. Known as the "Christ the Redeemer of the Andes," standing at an altitude of 13,000 feet, it towers over the whole area. Christ's left hand holds a cross. His right hand is extended in blessing. On the base of the great statue is a quotation from Paul's letter to the Ephesians which reads, "He is our peace who has made both one."
Nov 9, 2020
JEHOVAH RAPHA: God Our Healer
You may have seen one of them yourself. A number of independent studies are showing a definite relationship between prayer and--are you ready for this? Physical healing. In some cases, individuals pray for themselves. In others elders in a local church lay hands on someone and the person is healed. But in some situations, reports a physician in San Francisco General Hospital, the individuals themselves who recovered didn't even know anyone was praying.