The reading rates for the LifeSpring Devotional Guide are low. Part of that is due to the desperately low rates of reading-interest in our world right now. Getting folks to read for their well being is an uphill battle. For that reason, I would like to give you three big reasons why you should not ignore the devotional guide.
The biggest reason is that it will give you several ways to enter the idea of the upcoming sermon. For example, this coming week’s sermon is an introduction to the Seven Deadly Sins. The devotional guide explores the ideas and texts used in the sermon so that when the sermon is delivered on Sunday you will have already been thinking about the subject. Think of it as a week-long introduction to a spiritual idea. Food for thought. A way to embed scripture in your heart. The devotional guide gives a way to avoid the all-too-common practice of “going to church” to get a weekly shot of religion instead of letting the word dwell in you richly as Paul said in Colossians 3:16.
Second, the devotional attempts to acquaint the reader with poetic presentation of the idea as seen in some old hymnody. In this week’s devotional, you will find Grace Greater Than Our Sin, a wonderful hymn with lovely language. God placed poetic creation in the heart of mankind, and it is good to see what expression this God-given gift makes.
Third, the devotional contains thoughtful articles that have been written on the subject being considered. This week’s article is from Sarah Stirman, an occasional runner, reflects on the disciplines of running as an apt way to think about the Christian life and its disciplines. It’s good to read what others are thinking in regard to their discipleship.
Finally, the devotional guide contains six texts, including the sermon text, which support the sermon and may even be used in the sermon. It adds weight and depth to the sermon and is a worthwhile read, especially since it is lifted straight out of the Bible. Paul reminded Timothy of Scripture’s usefulness in developing spiritual maturity, and it’s a good reminder to us as well. 2 Timothy 3:14-17.
The devotional guide is not a random collection of ideas, but it is, rather, focused and intentional in its message and theme. It may be read in one sitting or throughout the week in serial fashion; it’s not long. Plus, the texts can be printed and carried in your Bible or car as a way to think about them throughout the week.
Think of the Devotional of the Week as your own private spiritual tutor. Figure out a way to make it a part of your week. You’ll be amazed at what bubbles up as you think about God during the week.