In modern times, devotional literature has taken its place as the cornerstone of Christian spiritual practices. In the past, even philosophers such as Saint Augustine who were writing what could be called Christian devotional literature were not accessible to the majority of people. Since then, it was because of mass literacy and improvements to education that we are able to read and learn from them today. Nowadays, most of us can read and write, and Bible study devotionals are a huge part of our growth in our personal beliefs.
This is a really great advancement. Even when Christian literature became more common among communities, individual Christians had to do a lot of intellectual digging in order to fully understand the depth and meaning of the Bible's teachings. The purpose of daily devotionals was to make those verses more accessible to us and to show us how they matter personally in our day to day lives. In short, they make learning from the Bible that much easier!
Daily scripture reading is something that has inspired us throughout the years, and that is why it is our great pleasure to share daily devotionals with you at Spiritual Bridge. Learn more about daily Bible study and what Spiritual Bridge has to offer you below.
1. What is a Bible Study Devotional?
Bible study devotionals are generally divided into two parts. First, there is a daily Bible verse that you can read or memorize on your own. After the Bible verse, there is a short passage on the meaning of the verse. These passages generally include useful applications as well as short lessons we as Christians can learn quickly and easily.
Life is sometimes filled with struggle, difficulty, trials, and tribulations. When Jesus talks about redemption, the Father, and salvation, it can be too easy for us to believe that this only applies to other people who appear to us to be spiritually perfect. They seem to do everything exactly as God would want it to be done. Paradoxically, if such people exist at all, God would not inspire the Bible to be written for them. Nor did He sacrifice His only begotten Son for their sake. The Bible and the Word of God is actually meant for real people who make real mistakes. It’s for people who understand guilt, pain, and conflicting impulses. A daily devotional is for those who seek help from God and are fully devoted to becoming closer to Him regardless of how imperfect they feel.
“Perfect” people actually don’t exist. This is because “perfect” people are those who don’t need a savior. They certainly don't require redemption or the greatest sacrifice of all time in order to be redeemed. 1 John 1:7-9 states, “If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” God is okay with us being imperfect people and He loves us anyway!
That is why a daily devotional can be so important for us. Daily devotionals teach us that redemption is not something that happens once and for all time. It is a process which occurs over and over again in our lives. Bible scriptures teach us that there is no sin that is so absolute that it will cause God to turn our backs on us, and daily Bible study can encourage us during our darkest hours, reminding us that God is there for us, regardless of whether we have turned our backs on Him. Ephesians 2:4-5 explains, “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved.”
Of course, we have to make some effort too. The Bible was written for us through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The book alone will do a person no good if it is not read. The Bible scriptures alone won’t do you any good if you don’t read them! Additionally, wisdom alone is not enough if you don’t actually follow or apply it to your life. This is what daily devotional readings are all about. They seek to inspire and encourage. Even when our lives seem to be falling into place, and everything is great, a daily devotional can help us to help others, which is what the teachings of Christ are all about.
2. Strengthening your relationship with God
While religious doctrine and the Church all have their role to fill in the Christian world, the real spiritual work is done in our day to day lives. Whether we are at work or home with our family, the ministry of Jesus Christ and his gospels are there with us. It is our job to see that what we learn through our daily scripture readings remains with us all day long!
This is precisely what daily Bible readings and helpful devotionals seek to achieve. It's a great way to start your morning. You can read a daily devotional as you drink your morning coffee and eat your breakfast, and you'll find yourself carrying that message with you everywhere you go throughout the day. Or you can read a daily Bible verse while you’re on your lunch break, or just before bed. What’s great about a daily devotional is that it’s perfect for any short space of time in your day.
Too often in our modern lives we are taught to compartmentalize the values that are most influential and important to us. We find that our own personalities and attitudes change depending on who we are spending most of our time with. We wear identities which are often in conflict with one another to work or when we're out with our friends. Without a solid foundation in the Lord, it becomes easy to forget who we are in the first place.
Romans 12:2 states, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Christian spirituality is not something you perform in Church once a week. It is meant to be the very bedrock which guides our decisions in life. It is meant to define who we are, even when we are with others who may bring us down. There are numerous benefits to remembering this passage and applying it to your daily walk with the Lord. One of the biggest benefits of daily Bible reading is that it will greatly deepen your relationship with God.
The worst experiences and most difficult times may put us at a crossroads. However, there's a more insidious way that people lose touch with their faith. The doldrums and repetition of modern living can erode our faith in God and our spiritual awareness little by little over time. People who are often experiencing this describe themselves as “tired” or as if they're only going through the motions. In fact, they feel like there's no one there at all to guide them. They feel as though they've become automatons on autopilot. The truth behind this is that God has not left them behind. In fact, He is the only thing that remains behind to keep them going. It is they who have abandoned Him and in so doing have abandoned themselves. Realization of this can itself be a crossroads. So, what should you do when this happens to you?
This experience of desolation is common to us all. Perhaps they make you feel distant, withdrawn, and tired all the time. Maybe your family members or close friends have begun to notice. What they see is an individual who was once vibrant and engaged turned off as if a light has gone off. This is where a Bible verse of the day and daily prayer can help you immensely. It isn't necessarily the big trials of our lives that discourage us. It can also be the small trials that wear us down a little bit at a time, sapping our spiritual strength and leaving us feeling as if we're gazing through a window, watching our lives go by.
It’s important to remember, however, that when we feel “stuck” or vulnerable, God has not abandoned us. Here are just a few Bible verses to keep in mind:
- 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Leave all your worries with him, because he cares for you.”
- Deuteronomy 3:18 states, “The Lord himself will lead you and be with you. He will not fail you or abandon you, so do not lose courage or be afraid.”
- 1 John 3:1 says, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”
- Philippians 4:6-7 explains, “Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart. And God’s peace, which is far beyond human understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with Christ Jesus.”
A lot of times this feeling of depression or unhappiness is a signal to us that something is wrong or missing in our lives. One of the major aspects of the Christian faith is to meditate on our relationship with God. So, the question is: How are we spending our time with God? In addition to that, how are we sharing our quality time with others? Where we spend our time is also where we indicate what is most important to us.
John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” When it seems as though we lack time to get everything done, God is asking us to make a choice for ourselves about what is most important in our lives. Time is in many ways like money, as the old adage goes. The best way is to learn how to “budget” our time and on the values that are most important to us and our spirituality as Christians. By doing so, we invest in our energies in the eternal instead of the ephemeral.
Spiritual Bridge offers daily Bible devotionals to inspire and to encourage us. It helps to know that God has your back no matter what obstacles life puts in your path. Our lives are full of ups and downs, and sometimes it is only through the strength of God that we can carry on and face the challenges. Daily prayer is important too. It is our time alone to talk to God. You can think of daily Bible study as God's time alone to talk to you, and yours to listen.
Like all relationships, a relationship with God is a two-way street. If we want God to listen to us, then we must also listen to God. The most apparent way that God speaks to us is through the Bible scriptures. This is why daily devotional reading has become so popular with many Christians and why they have found it so rewarding. It reminds and encourages us that God is with us throughout the day. So no matter what curve balls the world throws at you, you know that you don't have to face them alone. This is incredibly encouraging to hear!
God has shown us many excellent examples of spiritual goodness through His Word. This includes examples of men and women who consciously chose to walk in the light of God and away from the darkness. When we read stories of these great men and women, we are actually reminded of what is really important in this world. The Bible reminds us that if we are not using our spiritual gifts to help one another, then our work is not satisfying our spiritual needs. A daily Bible verse can help us to remember what is truly important in life.
That doesn't mean that everyone has to go out and heal the sick and feed the homeless for a living. It does mean that we can take some time out of our lives to help those who do. Volunteering, for instance, is a great way to practice the teachings of Jesus in our daily lives. Donating your time and money has been shown to have both spiritual and psychological benefits. In fact, 1 Corinthians 12:4-6 states, “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.” It actually doesn’t matter what kind of work you do – God has given us different gifts and we can use them in unique ways for His service.
Though Bible study is not the only way in which God speaks to us, it has the decided advantage of being accessible to anyone who is interested in listening. It is a necessary tool for anyone who wants to deepen their relationship with God, and this is why daily scripture readings are a fun, easy, and convenient way to accomplish that very task. No matter how busy your life may seem, you can always click on our site and check out our Bible verse of the day and daily Bible reading. A daily scripture reading will help you as it has helped us throughout the years get through tough times and inspire you through moments when you've lost touch with yourself and your faith.
Psalm 118:14-16 says, “The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things! The Lord’s right hand is lifted high; the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!” He is always there to help us through every moment as long as we entrust ourselves to Him.
It's so important, now perhaps more than ever, to carry the teachings of Christ with us throughout the day. It becomes too easy in a world where we have so many different roles to compartmentalize our faith and put our relationship with God on the back burner as we go about out days. We don't say this as some kind of rebuke. We know this because we've gone through it ourselves, and devotional literature, a Bible verse of the day, and daily prayer were what got us through those difficult times. So we created a site that we hoped would do the very same for you.
Spiritual Bridge’s mission is to use our gifts to increase the faith of believers everywhere. We seek to glorify God and encourage His people. Reading a daily Bible verse and a daily devotional is meant to accomplish this very goal.
3. Deepening your relationship to God's teachings with Daily Bible Reading
It may seem like sitting down and reading the Bible scriptures is a daunting task. You wouldn't be wrong. The Bible is a thick, densely written, and sometimes hard to interpret. That's why daily Bible verse readings have become so popular with the advent of the internet. They’re short and easy to read! This is especially true if you own a laptop, smartphone, or tablet. You can now bring Bible scriptures with you wherever you go. Even though smartphones and tablets have in some ways alienated us from one another, they can still be a useful tool to help us connect. You can easily access and read a daily devotional while you sip your morning coffee and get ready for the day ahead.
Daily Bible study helps remind us of what is truly important in our lives. Each day we are tested with hundreds of small details or pressures that can overwhelm us or cause us to behave in ways which are contrary to Christian values. That is why it is so important to maintain the right example.
This is especially true if you have children. Children may hear what we say, but they “listen” to what we do and how we act. That, more than anything, becomes the template for their future interactions. Though the script is never set in stone, if we set a bad example for them, then that is one more trial they will have to face alone. It will complicate their lives, add to their sorrows, and make it that much more difficult for them to succeed in the world. Life is difficult enough without parents compounding the trials their children will have to face, and Christ shows us a better way to deal with these difficulties than the example that all too often was set for us. Make a habit to read a Bible verse of the day with your child to set a positive example.
Deuteronomy 6:5-9 states, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. Take to heart these words that I give you today. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you’re at home or away, when you lie down or get up. Write them down, and tie them around your wrist, and wear them as headbands as a reminder. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” By choosing to engage in daily Bible study we are able to teach our families to know and love the Lord just as much as we do.
It also helps to remember that we ourselves are not perfect. We will slip up from time to time and fail to meet God's expectations for us. The question is, how do we respond to each slip-up? Do we blame others for causing us to lash out in anger? If we do, we teach our children a very dangerous lesson: that it is acceptable to act out of rage simply because someone else has “caused” us to behave in such a way. We then blame the individual who “caused” our anger for the actions we took by indulging in that anger.
God teaches us that though we are human, and we may not always be able to control how we feel, we do have free will, and so we can choose how we respond to those emotions. When we teach our children that they or someone else is to blame for angry or even violent behavior, we teach them that we, and people in general, are neither to blame nor in control of their own actions. The consequences of this misguided belief can be devastating in this world. Still, God teaches us that the power to overcome this false belief is always in our hands, and he also gives us the required guidance and tools to do exactly that.
This is another reason why daily prayer and daily Bible study are so vital. They help us keep the ministry of Jesus in the back of our heads. For those who aspire to live ethically and in the path of our Lord, it is an indispensable tool for deepening our relationship with God. Though the results may not always be readily apparent in the short term, in the long term, you will find yourself realizing the simple truth, that living the way Jesus taught us, can bring joy to your life in a myriad of ways.
One of the things almost everyone should learn is the belief that we're in control of what happens to us. The only thing that we are gifted to control is ourselves and our actions, and that is hard enough to manage. The rest is up to God. It may feel as though we're giving up our power, but the truth is it wasn't ours to give up in the first place. We should be dependent upon God because we are dependent upon God. Every breath we take is a gift from God. Every time the sun rises in the East, it is God's hand that made it so. Acknowledging this merely sets us in harmony with the way things are. In the end, nothing is given up but the illusion of our own control.
Daily devotionals are about reminding us of the simple truths of the Bible. We know your lives are busy. You may not have time to sit and study through the Bible line by line and word for word, but you can still engage in daily Bible study. We are human, and our secular day to day lives may teach us one set of principles about how to be a good employee, or how to have a good time, but if these teachings are not in accord with Bible scriptures, we will find that we have sacrificed our long-term happiness for short-term rewards. Of course, this is why that path is so seductive in the first place. It is also why God sent humanity an instruction manual to guide them through this world of trials. Lastly, it is why Spiritual Bridge has created this website with a daily Bible reading. Reading a Bible verse of the day reminds us of who we are as believers in the Word of God and Christians.
4. Applied Christianity
We say that following the teachings of Jesus in our everyday lives is good because there are rewards waiting for us in Heaven. What we don't generally mention or acknowledge is that there are plenty of rewards in this life too. Colossians 3:23-24 says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”
Those aspects of our lives which are most important to us, our marriage, our family, our jobs, they all benefit from the spiritual wisdom God offers us through the spiritual ministry of Jesus Christ and within the pages of the Bible. When people practically apply Christian principles to their daily living they describe a phenomenon that many Christians feel: things sort of naturally seem to fall into place because we are more in accord with God’s teachings. This happens because we have made room for them by leaving all the details up to God.
We're human, so it’s only natural that we get caught up in the details. But as the timeless adage goes, that's where God is, and by extension that is His domain. This is why, when we pray, it is important to leave the details up to God. There is nothing wrong with praying to God to find a future spouse, for example. The problem comes into play when we focus on a specific man or woman and ask God for that. We are setting ourselves up for disappointment if we ask God to make sure that everything we want in this life is magically solved. God sees infinitely more than we do and knows our hearts better than we do. We may pray to God for one particular outcome, and when that doesn't happen, it becomes too easy to say that God didn't listen to our prayers. That’s actually not the case at all. God knew that there was something better in store for us if we would open up our heart to it.
When we ask God for something specific, we are attempting to force an outcome. As Christians, we are taught to surrender our will to God. Daily prayer is important, however. When we ask for serenity, strength, courage, wisdom, redemption, or something which is abstract and non-corporeal, we are going to get just that. We are making room for God to enter our lives and inspire us. On the other hand, when we ask for something material-like, for instance, to win the lottery, or our biggest crush to notice us, we aren't making room for God; we're trying to manipulate Him.
As Christians, we come to learn that when we live by our own devices, we set ourselves up for failure. It isn't really our fault either. We can't see everything and we can't know everything. We see from our own perspective, but what God sees from His is infinitely more vast. That is why surrendering our control to Him is so important. People often say that love comes into their life when they least expect it. It's mainly because they've realized that their own attempts to find it have resulted in disappointment and sorrow. Yet the prayer has still not gone unanswered. But when you've made room for it, and not been overly attached to any single outcome, love has found its way to you. Things have “fallen into place.” However, before we can do any of that, it is necessary for us to make an effort to see God in the design of our everyday lives.
5. Our Daily Devotionals at Spiritual Bridge
The daily devotional readings that we provide come from an eclectic group of guest writers and staff. These are men and women who have dedicated their lives to studying the Bible scriptures and God's teachings, and seek to share their insight and wisdom with others. Their readings explore a wide range of topics that are meant to keep God and our faith in the foreground of our thoughts throughout the day. There is no place, nor time, nor role we play, where God should not occupy the center of our thoughts or be relieved of His place as the director and author of our lives.
Every day you can log on to Spiritual Bridge and find a new daily devotional that will help guide your choices throughout the day. Our devotionals will help focus your attention toward God's mission for you as a Christian, and prevent you from falling into bad habits and destructive patterns of behavior that lead to periods of desolation in our lives.
God wants us to be happy, to feel fulfilled, and most importantly to experience joy. It is too easy for us to pout and pity ourselves when things don't go our way. We could all use a friendly reminder that this is not God trying to punish us, but that He is trying to make us stronger so that our trials don't destroy us. We can do this by focusing on all the things that God has given us that we have to be grateful for.
To use an example, gratitude is one topic that keeps coming up in our daily devotionals because it is so important to our spirituality as Christians. Without it, we end up take our life for granted. The things we take for granted in this world are often the most important to us because they are the closest to us. When spouses take each other for granted, they put their whole family in jeopardy. When spouses feel that they are appreciated, they go out of their way to help one another, and the entire family is rewarded.
Colossians 3:15–17 says, “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
Even if God was indifferent toward our happiness, there would be an essential truth to the concept that gratitude and appreciation lead to more rewarding lives and relationships. Of course, we know that God does love us. He designed a universe where gratitude and appreciation have very obvious benefits, and then He inspired a book to be written just so we would understand how this universe works and how we can live in accord with that and be happy. God isn't just the creator of this universe, He's a good father to mankind, and He shows us that he loves us by teaching us right from wrong.
He's not a meddlesome father, however. He allows us to see how the consequences of our actions impact others and ultimately hurt ourselves as much as anyone. If you take the people you care about for granted, you will teach them to feel bad about doing nice things for you. You will eventually be forced into appreciating the things that they do for you because they won't be there in your life any longer. Even secular psychology has recognized these essential truths which are passed down to us in the Bible. Gratitude has become a part of modern behavioral therapies and cognitive development.
Spiritual Bridge offers devotionals that are meant to align you each day by putting thoughts of God into your mind and heart. This is especially true for when we feel angry, disappointed, or hurt. However, all of these emotions are normal and are a part of everyone’s lives. It’s not necessarily a sin to feel this way. The difference is how we bring these feelings to the Lord. That's why keeping God's message in our hearts all day every day is so important. It is so easy to fall into a pit of self-pity, or respond out of anger, or take the people we love the most and the lives we live for granted. The consequences of doing so, however, are never good.
So what we've done here at Spiritual Bridge is create a resource for our readers who want to deepen their relationship with God by fortifying their spiritual practice and tempering it with God's teachings. We offer you strong insight into the Bible scriptures and the encouraging words that have meant so much to us throughout the years.
Not only do we offer a daily devotional from a wide variety of authors from different backgrounds, but we also have devotional books that you can buy online from various authors. If you're looking for inspiration to start a new chapter of your life, you'll find we have articles that provide you with passages meant to inspire you as you begin afresh.
We have devotional readings for married couples, for parents, for children, for family life in general, for spiritual wellness, as well as devotionals particular to men and women. Our readings will help you focus your intentions, and keep the spirit of God's Word in your heart throughout the day. There are all kinds of informative articles that tie in Bible scriptures to the modern daily lives of men and women.
For instance, we have a wonderful piece on how to use teaching a child to brush their teeth on a daily basis as a lesson in Christian spirituality. We tie this into broader themes of parenting and discuss why it is so important to get your children into the routine of having healthy habits at a young age. It's our broader mission to show how Christian spiritual practice can be integrated into every aspect of our daily lives; even something as mundane as brushing your teeth can be used as an example of how God wants us to behave and how making the moral choice is the correct choice both for God and for us.
Christians from all walks of life will find our articles insightful and thought provoking and we hope that by providing this service we can deepen their relationships not only with God, but with each other as well.
6. Spiritual Bridge's Ministry
Our ministry at Spiritual Bridge is to make the Bible accessible to anyone who wants to deepen their relationship with God. We provide a broad spectrum of articles on a wide array of Christian spiritual topics with the goal in mind of fostering a deeper spiritual connection with the world around you. Our writers offer new and interesting perspectives that will help you live in accord with the Bible's teachings.
We offer spiritual advice concerning parenting, inquiries into the history of the Christian religion, and tips for spouses to keep their marriages fresh and as strong as they were when they began. We focus a great deal of our articles on the family because that is the center of many Christians' lives. Our articles and devotionals are particularly useful for husbands, wives, and parents to navigate the difficulties of having and caring for a family by employing the practical guidance the Bible has to offer on the subject.
Our daily devotional readings will help you make your way through each day and focus your energy on those things in your life that are truly important. Our readings from the Bible will focus on a number of issues everyday people face when navigating their modern lives.
The morals and teachings of the Bible scriptures are not some esoteric historical narrative that was only relevant to our lives before we invented computers and television. Though culture and technology may change and advance and our lives may seem to bear no resemblance whatsoever to the folks we meet within the pages of the Bible, the same essential truths and wisdom endure, and remain very much relevant today.
Many of us come to the teachings of Jesus during the most difficult periods of our lives. That's true for many of the people you will find writing for Spiritual Bridge. It is during our darkest moments that we go out in search of something that will guide us to a better place. In so doing we have already taken the first step. We have admitted that we are not the ones who are authoring the script of our lives, and every attempt at having done so has brought us to this moment now, seeking out a light in the darkness.
It was during these periods that a daily Bible reading and a daily devotional began to occupy a central role in our lives. Not only did it broaden and deepen our appreciation for God's Word and the Bible's teachings, but it also deepened our appreciation for life and small miracles that are happening every day around us. We began to understand that living in accord with God's teachings was not just something you did to be a “good person.” There was a practical rationale behind why it was so rewarding to live in this manner. We see the real life benefits of helping others, of gratitude, of giving up control to God.
Many of God's teachings may on the surface appear to us as paradoxical. We give up our attempts to achieve true power over our lives through faith. We help others and behave selflessly, and all the things we want seem to be provided for us. Spiritual Bridge responds to difficult situations with appreciation and gratitude, and suddenly they become blessings in disguise. Certainly, such a spiritual awareness is contrary to every instinct that we have and defies the rules of logic. Yet it is not God's way to make everything simple, and He is not bound by the rules of logic.
It is because daily devotional literature has been so rewarding to our spiritual journey as Christians that we wanted to create a place where others can come and hopefully it will inspire them as much as it has inspired us. Our work at Spiritual Bridge is the ministry of paying it forward from the school of hard knocks. We know how difficult life can get, how many cruel temptations there are in this world, and how important it is to have a light in the darkness to guide your path home.
That, in essence, is our ministry.