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Daily Bread Archive

Title Date
The measure of love

He who loves God must love his brother also. – 1 John 4:21

While visiting a Christian’s home, I saw these words displayed on a wall plaque: "You love Jesus only as much as you love the person you love the least." I squirmed at those revealing words. Later I found similar words in 1 John 4:20, "He who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?"

May 30, 2003 - 12:00am
After first sight

There fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once. – Acts 9:18

In 1991, two operations restored Shirl Jennings’ sight after 40 years of blindness. His family and friends reacted with absolute euphoria, but the next day Shirl’s fiancée recorded in her diary that he was "trying to adjust to being sighted . . . Not able to trust vision yet . . . Like [a] baby just learning to see, everything new, exciting, scary, unsure of what seeing means."

May 29, 2003 - 12:00am
Our work matters

We are God’s fellow workers. – 1 Corinthians 3:9

One of the world’s greatest architects, Sir Christopher Wren, undertook the task of helping to rebuild London after it had been nearly destroyed by fire in 1666. One day he visited the site where a large church building was under construction. He called out to a laborer perched high on a scaffold, "What are you doing up there?" With pride that man called back, "I’m helping Sir Christopher Wren build a cathedral!"

May 28, 2003 - 12:00am
In memory

Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives? – 2 Samuel 23:17

President Harry Truman was once asked to speak at a fund-raising project to help the children of a White House guard who was slain in the line of duty. With great emotion he said, "You can’t imagine just how a man feels when someone else dies for him."

May 27, 2003 - 12:00am

...elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. – 1 Peter 1:2

Many churches celebrate what is known as Trinity Sunday. Someone might say, "Who cares? With all the practical, everyday problems we face, why talk about such a complicated doctrine as the Trinity?" The problem with such thinking is that we cannot clearly grasp the truth of our salvation without having some understanding of the Trinity.

May 26, 2003 - 12:00am
Calm under pressure

In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and confidence shall be your strength. – Isaiah 30:15

At the farewell for a minister who had served his church for 20 years, several preachers eloquently extolled his many virtues. One layman, however, paid a tribute that the pastor considered to be the most gratifying. He said, "I have observed him nearly every day for the past 20 years, and I’ve never seen him in a hurry!"

May 25, 2003 - 12:00am
Our fulltime intercessor

He always lives to make intercession for them. – Hebrews 7:25

It was dawn, and I was painfully aware of being only a few weeks into widowhood. After another restless night, I felt too weary to pray for myself. "Lord," I sighed, "I need someone to pray for me right now."

May 24, 2003 - 12:00am
The art of Lilias Trotter

They immediately left their nets and followed Him. – Matthew 4:20

Few people have ever heard of Lilias Trotter, but it didn’t have to bet that way. A young art student in 19th-century England, Trotter had great talent as a painter. The well-known artist and professor John Ruskin recognized it, took her under his tutelage, and saw her ability blossom over a short time. In a letter he stated that she was "the best of my pupils". She was to become the next Ruskin protégé of renown.

May 23, 2003 - 12:00am
Compelling love

The love of Christ compete us. – 2 Corinthians 5:14

I read a story some time ago about an aspiring young golfer who spent hours in his backyard practicing his golf swing. He wasn’t allowed to use a real golf ball close to the house, only a plastic, practice ball.

One day, when he thought both his parents were gone, he longed to hear the sweet click of a club head meeting a real golf ball. So he went outside, teed one up, took a mighty swing, and accidentally hit the ball through his parents’ bedroom window.

May 22, 2003 - 12:00am
The good life

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him! – Psalm 34:8

Many people associate "the good life" with success, fame, and money. Yet a dying man who had it all told me that his life hadn’t been worth the effort to attain his success.

May 21, 2003 - 12:00am
Murphy’s laws

You shall have no other gods before me. – Exodus 20:3

Murphy’s Laws are observations about life that seem to have the weight of experience behind them. You’ve probably heard this one: "If anything can go wrong, it will." Here’s another one: "You can’t do just one thing; everything has its consequences."

May 20, 2003 - 12:00am
Daily Bread

Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?– Galatians 3:3

I read a humorous story about a man who strolled out of a hardware store with a smile on his face and a brand-new chainsaw in his hands. He was told it could cut down five big oak trees in an hour. Twenty-four hours later, however, his smile was gone. Frustrated, he was back at the store complaining that the saw would never cut five trees in an hour. "It took me all day to cut down five trees," he said.

May 19, 2003 - 12:00am
Home missions

You shall be witnesses to Me . . . to the end of the earth. – Acts 1:8

One morning as I was strolling along the shore of the Gulf of Mexico, I saw a middle-aged man sitting in the water. We exchanged greetings, and then he painfully struggled to his feet and began to talk.

What a story of angry resentment! As a young man, he was about to set up a law practice when he was called into the armed forces during World War II. While in the military, he contracted a disease that left him maimed in body and bitter in soul.

May 18, 2003 - 12:00am
How can we love?

Love never fails. – 1 Corinthians 13:8

First Corinthians 13 is often read at weddings. Yet even optimistic newlyweds will eventually fail to love. The only individual who perfectly fulfills this "love chapter" is Jesus Christ.

Pastor F. B. Meyer (1847-1929) wrote, "Jesus sits for His portrait in these glowing sentences, and every clause is true of Him. Substitute His name for ‘love’ throughout the chapter, and see whether it is not an exact likeness."

May 17, 2003 - 12:00am
My little girl

The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. – Psalm 103:8

Several years ago I read about a girl named Mary who had been born with a cleft palate. When she started school, her classmates teased and taunted her unmercifully because of her scarred and misshapen lip, crooked nose, lopsided teeth, and garbled speech. Mary soon became convinced that no one could love her.

May 16, 2003 - 12:00am
Study to live

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the Word of truth. – 2 Timothy 2:15

May 15, 2003 - 12:00am
Facing danger with prayer

O Lord our God, I pray, save us... that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord God. – 2 Kings 19:19

Trouble lay ahead for King Hezekiah of Judah. He had just received a menacing letter from Assyria’s King Senna-cherib. This marauding monarch had conquered many cities, and Jerusalem was next on his list. In his letter, Sennacherib mocked the God of Israel and threatened to destroy the holy city.

May 14, 2003 - 12:00am
Stop at the start

As charcoal is to burning coals, and wood to fire, so is a contentious man to kindle strife. – Proverbs 26:21

In the spring of 1894, the Baltimore Orioles came to Boston to play the Red Sox in what was expected to be a routine baseball game. But what happened was anything but routine. The Orioles’ John McGraw got into a fight with Boston’s third baseman. Within minutes all the players from both teams had joined in the brawl.

May 13, 2003 - 12:00am
Mother’s laws

Do not forsake the law of your mother. – Proverbs 6:20

As I read Proverbs 6:20, which refers to "the law of your mother", I recall some of my mother’s unique "laws" that have helped me many times.

The first one I call "the law of the warm kitchen". When we got home from school on a cold winter’s day or when the holidays rolled around, the kitchen was always so warm from baking and cooking that the windows were steamed. It was also warm with a mother’s love.

May 12, 2003 - 12:00am
Souls and wallets

Be content with such things as you have. – Hebrews 13:5

May 11, 2003 - 12:00am
Souls and wallets

Be content with such things as you have. – Hebrews 13:5

May 10, 2003 - 12:00am
Going away

They worshipped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. – Luke 24:52

It was the most unusual "going-away party" ever. There stood Jesus, who had recently risen from the grave. And there stood His followers, listening to His teaching as they had on so many occasions. Jesus spoke about the coming of the Holy Spirit (Luke 24:49), and He told them that it would be their task to be His witnesses.

May 9, 2003 - 12:00am
Where is my focus?

Be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful. – Luke 6:36

My mother, who was a single parent in Singapore, employed a nanny to take care of us children while she was at work. Only many years later did I realize how profoundly my nanny had influenced my thinking and behavior. She used to tell us, "If people treat you well, treat them better than they have treated you; but if they treat you badly, treat them worse than they have treated you!"

May 8, 2003 - 12:00am
Is God unfair?

All His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is He. – Deuteronomy 32:4

A couple I knew some years ago questioned God’s fairness after both of their school-aged children were killed in auto accidents within a period of three years. Like most parents, they had anticipated much happiness with their son and daughter. Their friends saw their own children graduate from high school, but these parents were deprived of that joy.

May 7, 2003 - 12:00am
The salt lick

Let the Lord be magnified, who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant. – Psalm 35:27

One spring I put a salt block in the bushes a few yards behind my mountain home. I was hoping to draw in a small herd of deer that grazed at a distance. Each morning I slowly opened the window shades, hoping to see deer gathered around the lick; each morning I was disappointed. I didn’t think the herd would ever find the salt.

May 6, 2003 - 12:00am
Do I care?

When He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them. – Matthew 9:36

Why would Richard Gilder install a fire department gong in his bedroom? As the Tenement House Commissioner in New York City, he wondered what was causing so many fires. But he did more than wonder – he showed genuine concern. Whenever a fire broke out in one of the tenement houses, the alarm sounded and Gilder would rush off to investigate.

May 5, 2003 - 12:00am
Secret service?

Obadiah feared the Lord greatly. – 1 Kings 18:3

Should our service for the Lord always be out in the open for all to see? Or should it sometimes be kept secret to assure its success? This may seem like an irrelevant question to believers who enjoy religious freedom. But it’s the kind of dilemma more and more people are facing as opposition to Christianity grows.

May 4, 2003 - 12:00am
Making a face

We all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image. – 2 Corinthians 3:18

In her book about the history of plastic surgery, Holly Brubach writes: "I myself subscribe to the notion that by the time you’re 50, you have the face you deserve . . . After decades of repetitive scowling or laughter or worry, one’s attitude toward life is etched on one’s face." That’s a vivid reminder that every day we are making a face that tells the world a great deal about us.

May 3, 2003 - 12:00am
‘We just have to talk’

The Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. – Exodus 33:11

Lisa and Sheryl have been friends since grade school. Even though their paths have taken them in different directions since those schoolgirl days in New Jersey, they have maintained their close friendship.

May 2, 2003 - 12:00am
A place just for you

I have filled him with the Spirit of God . . . to design artistic works. – Exodus 31:3-4

A bricklayer whose brother was a famous violinist was talking with the head of the construction company where he worked. "It must be great to have a brother who is known around the world," said the executive. He quickly added, "Of course, we must accept the fact that talent isn’t equally distributed – even in the same family."

May 1, 2003 - 12:00am