Year: 2019

Freedom by Faith

Today’s Bible Reading: Hebrews 12:2–3

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. -Hebrews 11:1

Many listeners imagine heaven when they hear the old gospel song, “Come and Go to That Land.” This song also recalls the journey Black Americans took out of bondage: “the Great Migration.” Black individuals’ journeys North were faith excursions, too,…

Oh, Victory

Today’s Bible Reading: Hebrews 11:32–12:1

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses . . . let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us. -Hebrews 12:1 (nrsv)

In summertime in mid twentieth-century Black America, many headed from morning worship to the ballpark. Crowds in their Sunday best filled stands at local Negro League games. Black players…

Sing the Freedom Songs

Today’s Bible Reading: Ephesians 5:18–20

Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord. -Ephesians 5:19 (nkjv)

Most African American churches sponsor a Black History Program at least annually, to commemorate culture. This year, my daughter Candacee coordinated a presentation with a group of junior high students. She did an excellent job…


Today’s Bible Reading: 1 Corinthians 11:23–26

This observance will be for you like a sign on your hand and a reminder on your forehead that this law of the Lord is to be on your lips. For the Lord brought you out of Egypt with his mighty hand. You must keep this ordinance at the appointed time year after year. -Exodus 13:9–10

I grew…

Set Free

Today’s Bible Reading: Acts 16:22–31

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom. -2 Corinthians 3:17

Oppression, unjustified criticism, and overwhelming anxieties filled our hearts as we entered mid-week prayer fellowship. After kneeling quietly before the Lord, we lifted our voices in songs of praise to Him. Soon peace that only the Holy Spirit can…

Enduring to Conquer

Today’s Bible Reading: Acts 12:1–10

Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I know without a doubt that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches.” -Acts 12:11

In 1965, Amelia Boynton Robinson’s image flashed across media. The first African American woman to run for Congress in Alabama in 1964, the news images revealed her painful campaign for freedom…

He Did What He Could

Today’s Bible Reading: Psalm 81

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” -Matthew 11:28

Jacob Burkle was an unusual abolitionist in Memphis, Tennessee. After immigrating to the United States from Germany in the 1840s, this businessman faced pressure to participate in the Southern slavery system, in order to be successful. So Jacob Burkle came up…

Led by His Word

At the BBC in London, Paul Arnold’s first broadcasting job was making “walking sounds” in radio dramas. While actors read from scripts during a walking scene, Paul as stage manager made corresponding sounds with his feet—careful to match his pace to the actor’s voice and spoken lines. The key challenge, he explained, was yielding to the actor in the story, “so the two of us were working together.”

A divine version of such cooperation was sought by the author of Psalm 119, which emphasizes living by the precepts of God’s Word. As Psalm 119:1 says: “Blessed are those whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord.” Led this way by God and following His instructions, we can remain pure (v. 9), overcome scorn (v. 23), and escape greed (v. 36). He will enable us to resist sin (v. 61), find godly friends (v. 63), and live in joy (v. 111).

Theologian Charles Bridges commented on verse 133: “When I take therefore a step into the world, let me ask—Is it ordered in God’s word, which exhibits Christ as my perfect example?”

Walking this way, we show the world Christ. May He bless us today to walk so closely with Him that people glimpse in us our Leader, Friend, and Savior!