God’s Hand of Healing: Day 3

“The king of Aram had great admiration for Naaman, the commander of his army, because through him the Lord had given Aram great victories. But though Naaman was a mighty warrior, he suffered from leprosy.

At this time Aramean raiders had invaded the land of Israel, and among their captives was a young girl who had been given to Naaman’s wife as a maid. One day the girl said to her mistress, ‘I wish my master would go to see the prophet in Samaria. He would heal him of his leprosy.’

So Naaman told the king what the young girl from Israel had said. ‘Go and visit the prophet,’ the king of Aram told him. ‘I will send a letter of introduction for you to take to the king of Israel.’ So Naaman started out, carrying as gifts 750 pounds of silver, 150 pounds of gold, and ten sets of clothing. The letter to the king of Israel said: ‘With this letter I present my servant Naaman. I want you to heal him of his leprosy.’

When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes in dismay and said, ‘Am I God, that I can give life and take it away? Why is this man asking me to heal someone with leprosy? I can see that he’s just trying to pick a fight with me.’

But when Elisha, the man of God, heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes in dismay, he sent this message to him: ‘Why are you so upset? Send Naaman to me, and he will learn that there is a true prophet here in Israel.’

So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and waited at the door of Elisha’s house. But Elisha sent a messenger out to him with this message: ‘Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River. Then your skin will be restored, and you will be healed of your leprosy.’

But Naaman became angry and stalked away. ‘I thought he would certainly come out to meet me!’ he said. ‘I expected him to wave his hand over the leprosy and call on the name of the Lord his God and heal me! Aren’t the rivers of Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better than any of the rivers of Israel? Why shouldn’t I wash in them and be healed?’ So Naaman turned and went away in a rage.

But his officers tried to reason with him and said, ‘Sir, if the prophet had told you to do something very difficult, wouldn’t you have done it? So you should certainly obey him when he says simply, ‘Go and wash and be cured!’” So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child, and he was healed!

Then Naaman and his entire party went back to find the man of God. They stood before him, and Naaman said, ‘Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. So please accept a gift from your servant.'” 2 Kings 5:1-15, NLT

12-Step Devotional from the Life Recovery Bible

Step 1: We admitted that we were powerless Over our problems—that our lives had become unmanageable.

It can be very humiliating to admit that we are powerless, especially if we are used to being in control. We may be powerful in some areas of our lives, but out of control in terms of our addictive/compulsive behaviors. If we refuse to admit our powerlessness, we may lose everything. That one unmanageable part may infect and destroy everything else.

The experiences of Aramean army commander Naaman illustrate how this is true. He was a powerful military and political figure, a man of wealth, position, and power. He also had leprosy, which promised to bring about the loss of everything he held dear. Lepers were made outcasts from their families and from society. Ultimately, they faced a slow, painful, and disgraceful death.

Naaman heard about a prophet in Israel who could heal him. He found the prophet, and the prophet told him that in order to be healed he needed to dip himself seven times in the Jordan River. Naaman went away outraged, having expected that his power would buy him an instant and easy cure. In the end, however, he acknowledged his powerlessness, followed the instructions, and recovered completely.

Our “diseases” are as life threatening as the leprosy of Naaman’s day. They
slowly separate us from our families and lead toward the destruction of everything important to us. There is no instant or easy cure. The only answer is to admit our powerlessness, humble ourselves, and submit to the process that will eventually bring recovery.

Take a look inside the Life Recovery Bible

Be an Example

“Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them. Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.” 1 Timothy 4:11-12, NLT

Notes from the Life Application Study Bible

Timothy was a young pastor. It would have been easy for older Christians to look down on him because of his youth. He had to earn the respect of his elders by setting an example in his speech, life, love, faith, and purity. Regardless of your age, God can use you. Whether you are young or old, don’t think of your age as a handicap. Live so others can see Christ in you.

Apparently Timothy needed some encouragement. Most likely, so do you and others around you. Each day we have opportunities to support and inspire family members, fellow workers, friends, neighbors, pastors, and even total strangers. People need help and affirmation in their daily lives. Paul modeled five important principles to help us encourage others:

  1. Begin with positive statements. People who know we will speak kindly to them will be happy to work with us.
  2. Develop expectations of others with consideration for their skills, maturity, and experience. People will reject or fail to meet expectations that do not fit them. Be patient with distracted or slow learners.
  3. Monitor your expectations of others. Changing circumstances sometimes require revised or reduced expectations.
  4. Clarify your expectations with others. People are not likely to hit a target that no one has identified.
  5. End with a statement of gratitude. People love to be thanked for a job well done.

See the Personality Profile of Timothy from the Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition

The Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition, is available in Personal Size, Full Size, and Large Print. Learn more

The Unlikely Beginnings of the #1–Selling Life Application Study Bible

by Molly Jo Nyman, freelance writer

It started with dissatisfaction.

Notes written by Bible scholars in Ron Beers’s study Bible were full of facts but left 25-year-old Ron uninspired.

“All the notes were information,” Ron recalls. “In Genesis 41, I learned that ‘all the Egyptians were clean shaven, so it was important that Joseph appear that way in the presence of Pharaoh.’ Well, that’s interesting but . . . so what?”

With gifted storyteller and author V. Gilbert Beers as his father, Ron was used to being inspired. Family meals were served with Bible stories so engaging that no one zoned out. His young life was rich with experiences that helped him lean in and expect the Bible to connect to everyday life.

Ron had an unusual response to his dissatisfaction: He studied his study Bible.

And his discovery was startling.

After a thorough review of the study Bible he owned, along with a few others, Ron found zero help in connecting daily struggles and needs with the wisdom of Scripture. No notes on how to deal with worry, priorities, doubts, or relational conflict. Not one connection to personal application.

He began to wonder if there could be a study Bible that was more helpful. He thought about what it might look like. Then he became convinced that a completely new and different kind of study Bible was needed.

This new kind of study Bible would continue to provide accurate information, but it would also connect to inspiration. It would help people not just to know but also to do so that they could experience the transformative power of God’s Word. It would connect the dots.

As luck—or rather God—would have it, Ron was working at the national headquarters of Youth for Christ in Illinois on new product development (primarily books). It was a front row seat not only to see the need for an application-oriented study Bible but also to observe the approaches—what worked and what didn’t in helping people connect God’s Word to everyday life.

Youth for Christ was passionate about reaching young people with the gospel and helping them become “lifelong followers of Jesus who lead by their Godliness in lifestyle . . .” (as quoted in their mission statement). And in the mid-1980s, youth ministry was thriving with hundreds of high school kids showing up for club meetings.

With crazy crowd breakers and hilarious games, meetings were fun but also focused on felt needs and common youth issues. Topics like loneliness or fear were opportunities to show kids that Jesus cared about them personally and how his Word could actually help them.

When the Bible was taught, the focus wasn’t on Bible literacy, cultural context, and historical facts. It was focused on the exact thing Ron wanted this newfangled study Bible to do.

“All around us people were asking, ‘If God really cares about me and my daily life, my community, my nation, my world, then shouldn’t the Bible put forth a clearer blueprint for how to navigate daily challenges? Shouldn’t its transformative power be more obvious?’ That’s what we wanted to get at,” recalls Ron.

“Because when people see how amazingly relevant the Bible is to any issue they’re facing, they’ll hunger and thirst to devour the Scriptures, deepening their relationship with God and transforming their relationships with others.”

Ron brought the idea of an application-oriented study Bible for high school students to his boss, Bruce Barton, vice president of the ministry service division and the force behind Youth for Christ’s new publishing emphasis at the time, and he also shared it with others.

According to Jim Galvin, Youth for Christ’s national training director at the time, the idea germinated and grew as most new ideas do—with a little bit of conflict and bashing.

“We would meet to brainstorm products for Youth for Christ, and Ron kept bringing [the idea for a youth application study Bible] up. I was the most vocal against it,” Galvin said. “High school students didn’t use study Bibles. We worked with high school students; we knew them. And they never, ever open a study Bible.”

But that didn’t stop Ron from continuing to bring it up. So to squash the idea, Galvin wrote a detailed memo.

“It basically said, if we’re going to do a study Bible for high school kids, it has to be done right, and it has to include profiles of Bible people, charts, a Bible outline, study notes, and a whole bunch of features,” Galvin recalled. “I was hoping Ron and others would say, ‘This is way too much work. High school kids wouldn’t use this product, anyway.’

“Talk about backfiring. When Ron got the memo, his reaction was, ‘Now that’s what I’m talking about!’”

Fun fact: Notes and feature in your Life Application Study Bible were written, revised, and reviewed by writers, editors, and scholars at least 17 times. As the story of its creation is told, you can trust its guidance even more.

The Life Application Study Bible is now available in Personal Size, Full Size, and Large Print. Learn more

God’s Hand of Healing: Day 2

“Some time later the woman’s son became sick. He grew worse and worse, and finally he died. Then she said to Elijah, ‘O man of God, what have you done to me? Have you come here to point out my sins and kill my son?’

But Elijah replied, ‘Give me your son.’ And he took the child’s body from her arms, carried him up the stairs to the room where he was staying, and laid the body on his bed. Then Elijah cried out to the Lord, ‘O Lord my God, why have you brought tragedy to this widow who has opened her home to me, causing her son to die?’

And he stretched himself out over the child three times and cried out to the Lord, ‘O Lord my God, please let this child’s life return to him.’ The Lord heard Elijah’s prayer, and the life of the child returned, and he revived! Then Elijah brought him down from the upper room and gave him to his mother. ‘Look!’ he said. ‘Your son is alive!’

Then the woman told Elijah, ‘Now I know for sure that you are a man of God, and that the Lord truly speaks through you.'” 1 Kings 17:17-24, NLT

Elijah Profile from the Beyond Suffering Bible

Asking others for help is humbling and can be life changing for everyone involved. If the person you ask has little available to give, your request may seem selfish or insensitive. But what if God told you to ask that person for assistance?

Elijah had a word from God directing him to go to Zarephath, where he would meet an impoverished widow and single mother who had no way of knowing that God was about to set in motion a miracle—one that would not only provide for her needs, but also impact her faith forever.

This story plays out in three acts.

Act One. Elijah instructed the widow to use her meager supplies of flour and cooking oil to bake some bread to feed him first, then her and her son. Elijah acted with God’s assurance that there would be enough food from that day until the new rains and crops arrived (17:14). The widow followed the prophet’s instructions, and there was just enough flour and oil to meet their daily needs. The promise of God was fulfilled.

Act Two. When the widow’s son became sick and died, the desperate woman turned to Elijah for help. He carried the child to his own room, where he prayed. Elijah’s first prayer was a complaint: “Why bring this tragedy on a poor woman who is simply struggling to stay alive? How can this be fair?” His second prayer was a request: “Give back the child’s life.” And God did.

Act Three. The grieving mother was given back a healthy, living son. The woman’s response went beyond simple joy or relief—she acknowledged the activity of God in the life and words of his prophet. Elijah was obedient, willing to trust God and humble himself to ask for help, even when it made no sense. The result? An abundant provision came through an unlikely source, and a struggling woman’s faith was strengthened.

Look inside the Beyond Suffering Bible

God’s Hand of Healing: Day 1

“When Isaac grew up and was about to be weaned, Abraham prepared a huge feast to celebrate the occasion. But Sarah saw Ishmael—the son of Abraham and her Egyptian servant Hagar—making fun of her son, Isaac. So she turned to Abraham and demanded, ‘Get rid of that slave woman and her son. He is not going to share the inheritance with my son, Isaac. I won’t have it!’

This upset Abraham very much because Ishmael was his son. But God told Abraham, ‘Do not be upset over the boy and your servant. Do whatever Sarah tells you, for Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted. But I will also make a nation of the descendants of Hagar’s son because he is your son, too.’

So Abraham got up early the next morning, prepared food and a container of water, and strapped them on Hagar’s shoulders. Then he sent her away with their son, and she wandered aimlessly in the wilderness of Beersheba.

When the water was gone, she put the boy in the shade of a bush. Then she went and sat down by herself about a hundred yards away. ‘I don’t want to watch the boy die,’ she said, as she burst into tears.

But God heard the boy crying, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, ‘Hagar, what’s wrong? Do not be afraid! God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. Go to him and comfort him, for I will make a great nation from his descendants.’

Then God opened Hagar’s eyes, and she saw a well full of water. She quickly filled her water container and gave the boy a drink.

And God was with the boy as he grew up in the wilderness. He became a skillful archer, and he settled in the wilderness of Paran. His mother arranged for him to marry a woman from the land of Egypt.” Genesis 21:8-21, NLT

Hagar Personality Profile from the Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition

Escape of some kind is often the most tempting solution to our problems. Hagar was a person who used that approach. When the going got tough, she got going—in the other direction.

However, it is worthwhile to note that the biggest challenges Hagar faced were brought on by other people’s choices. Sarah chose her to bear Abraham’s child, and Hagar probably had little say in the matter.

It isn’t hard to understand how Hagar’s pregnancy caused her to look down on Sarah. But that brought on hard feelings, and Sarah consequently punished Hagar. This motivated her first escape. When she returned to the family and gave birth to Ishmael, Sarah’s continued infertility must have contributed to bitterness on both sides.

When Isaac was finally born, Sarah looked for any excuse to have Hagar and Ishmael sent away. She found it when she caught Ishmael teasing Isaac. In the wilderness, out of water and facing the death of her son, Hagar once again tried to escape. She walked away so she wouldn’t have to watch her son die. Once again, God graciously intervened.

Have you noticed how patiently God operates to make our escape attempts fail? Have you begun to learn that escape is only a temporary solution? God’s continual desire is for us to face our problems with his help. We experience his help most clearly in and through conflicts and difficulties, not away from them. Are there problems in your life for which you’ve been using the “Hagar solution”? Choose one of those problems, ask for God’s help, and begin to face it today.

Take a look inside the Life Application Study Bible

How to Study the Bible

From the New Believer’s Bible

One thing you will want to do on a daily basis is study the Bible. You may, however, have some questions about this. For example, you may ask yourself, How do I study the Bible? Or, Where do I begin reading? This feature will answer those questions and give you the information you need to develop the basic techniques necessary for effective Bible study.

Pray for Wisdom and Understanding. The most often overlooked and undervalued aspect of Bible study is prayer. Yet prayer is essential to gaining wisdom and understanding when you read God’s Word. Through prayer, you can approach God and acknowledge your incomplete knowledge of his Word, as well as your need for him to open your heart to his instruction. Therefore, determine to begin each study with prayer. Only God can give you the wisdom to understand his Word.

Read in an Orderly Manner. If you received a letter and read only a few sentences here and there, the letter would not make much sense to you. But if you read the letter in order, you would understand it. The same holds true when you read the Bible.

Sadly, many Christians do not realize the shallowness of this approach when applied to reading the Bible. They read a portion of Matthew, a story from Daniel, a verse or two from Exodus, and then a chapter or so from Revelation and wonder why they do not have a good understanding of God’s Word. Furthermore, they end up misinterpreting the meaning of these passages because they have failed to grasp the context from which they came.

To avoid developing this poor habit, you need to discipline yourself to read the Bible in an orderly manner. One way to do this is to use an established reading plan. A reading plan lists Scripture passages to be read in a certain order. Many of the existing plans were created with a goal in mind. Some plans break the whole Bible down into 365 daily readings. Others help you read through he Bible in the order that the events actually happened. For now, you may want to use the following plan as your reading guide. Start with the Gospel of John. This Gospel was written so that we might believe that Jesus is the Son of God (John 20:31). Then, after you have finished reading John, read the rest of the New Testament. Once you have finished the New Testament, you should read the books of the Old Testament. There you will see the coming of Jesus foreshadowed and learn all about God’s people, the Israelites.

Finish What You Start. In life, the benefits of doing anything are often not realized until the task is completed. The same is true when reading a book from the Bible. Once you choose a book to read, read it from beginning to end. Although you may benefit spiritually by reading a verse from one book or a story from another, you will benefit more by reading the entire book from which the verse or story came. Reading the entire book puts each verse and story in its proper context. Thus, you will have a better understanding of what each verse and story means. In addition, by reading books from beginning to end you will become more familiar with the Bible as a whole. You may even discover passages that will one day become your favorites.

Meditate on God’s Word and Ask Questions. Thinking about what you have read cannot be overemphasized. Meditating on what you have read helps you to discover the importance of the passage. It also helps you to examine your life in light of what God reveals in his Word. One of the best ways to begin meditating on God’s Word is to ask questions. Here are a few questions to help you get started:
• What is the main subject of the passage?
• To whom is this passage addressed?
• Who is speaking?
• About what or whom is the person speaking?
• What is the key verse?
• What does this passage teach me about God?

To see how the text might apply to you personally, ask yourself these questions:
• Is there any sin mentioned in the passage that I need to confess or stop
• Is there a command given that I should obey?
• Is there a promise made that I can apply to my current circumstances?
• Is there a prayer given that I could pray?

Invest in a Few Good Resource Books. The Bible mentions or assumes that
you know about many ancient customs that are completely unfamiliar to us today. Much of the subtle meaning behind these references that would give us greater insight into and appreciation for God’s Word is therefore lost to us. To understand the culture in which the Bible was written, you may want to purchase a few good biblical resource books. There are two types of resource books you should look into purchasing: (1) a
one- or two-volume commentary on the whole Bible and (2) a Bible dictionary.

Most one- or two-volume commentaries are concise. They give you the necessary information on important words, phrases, and verses from the Bible. They will not give you commentary on each verse, and they will not go into detailed explanations on any one verse. But they are good resources to help you begin to understand God’s Word. The price for such a commentary can range from twenty-five to forty dollars per volume. Bible dictionaries contain short articles (in alphabetical order) on people, places, events, and objects found in the Bible. Some Bible dictionaries also contain maps, diagrams, and pictures of biblical cities, regions, and artifacts. Bible dictionaries cost between twenty-five and thirty-five dollars. You can find these resources wherever Christian books are sold.

If you apply these practices to your daily personal Bible study, you are bound to develop habits that will help you grow in your faith.

Take a look inside the New Believer’s Bible

Free Bible Resources to Bring You Closer to God

Though this COVID-19 crisis has caused many of us to physically isolate ourselves from people we love, we are finding comfort in remembering that God is always with us. For us here at Tyndale Bibles, a light that has shined through this darkness is the coming together of the community of believers to be innovative in sharing God’s love in a time when so many desperately need it.

If you follow us on social media, you will know that we have done several reading plans together these weeks. We also have created some additional free resources we wanted to share with you. Please continue to join us in reading God’s Word, praying, and bringing God’s hope. We are thankful for each of you and pray you feel God’s loving arms around you.

Shelter in Place with Joni: A 7-Day Devotional Reading Plan
During this difficult season of social distancing, economic upheaval, and panic about the COVID-19 pandemic, Joni shares her biblical perspective on suffering. Instead of being fearful as we huddle at home, Scripture shows us that the only place to find true comfort is in the arms of our good and wise God, who remains our sovereign Savior. Drawing from the Beyond Suffering Bible, this reading plan will encourage you to focus on Jesus in troubled times.

Who Is Mary Magdalene?

“Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. ‘Dear woman, why are you crying?’ the angels asked her. ‘Because they have taken away my Lord,’ she replied, ‘and I don’t know where they have put him.'” John 20:11-13, NLT

Profile from the Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition

The Absence of women among the 12 disciples has bothered a few people. But Jesus’ close followers clearly included many women. Also clear is the fact that Jesus did not treat women as others in his culture did; he treated them with dignity, as people with worth.

Mary of Magdala was an early follower of Jesus who certainly deserves to be called a disciple. An energetic, impulsive, and caring woman, she not only traveled with Jesus but also contributed to meeting the needs of his group. She was present at the Crucifixion and was on her way to anoint Jesus’ body on Sunday morning when she discovered the empty tomb. Mary was the first to see Jesus after his resurrection.

Mary Magdalene is a heartwarming example of thankful living. She was miraculously freed by Jesus when he drove seven demons out of her. In every glimpse we have of Mary, she was acting out her appreciation for the freedom Jesus had given her. That freedom allowed her to stand under Jesus’ cross when all the disciples except John were hiding in fear. After Jesus’ death, she intended to show his body every respect. Like the rest of Jesus’ followers, she never expected his bodily resurrection—but she was overjoyed to discover it.

Mary’s faith was not complicated; it was direct and genuine. She was more eager to believe and obey than to understand everything. Jesus honored her childlike faith by appearing to her first and by entrusting her as the first messenger of the Good News of his resurrection.

Strengths and accomplishments:

  • Contributed to the needs of Jesus and his disciples
  • One of the few faithful followers present at Jesus’ death on the cross

Notable facts:

  • Had to have seven demons driven out of her by Jesus
  • First to see Jesus after his resurrection

Lessons from her life:

  • Those who are obedient grow in understanding.
  • Women are vital to Jesus’ ministry.
  • Jesus relates to women as he created them—as equal to men and as bearers of God’s image.

Vital statistics:

  • Where: Magdala, Jerusalem
  • Occupation: We are not told, but she seems to have been wealthy
  • Contemporaries: Jesus, Jesus’ disciples, Mary, Martha, Lazarus, Mary (Jesus’ mother)

Key verse: “After Jesus rose from the dead early on Sunday morning, the first person who saw himwas Mary Magdalene, the woman from whom he had cast out seven demons.” (Mark 16:9)

Mary Magdalene’s story is told in Matthew 27–28; Mark 15–16; Luke 23–24; John 19–20. She is also mentioned in Luke 8:2.

Take a look inside the Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition

Holy Reading Reading Plan Day 7: The Resurrection of Jesus

“The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. And as they went, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they ran to him, grasped his feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.’” Matthew 28:8-10, NLT

Article from the Illustrated Study Bible

Scripture unanimously depicts the personal and bodily resurrection of Jesus from the dead by the power of God, but numerous other attempts to explain it have emerged:

(1) Jesus never really died—instead, he lost consciousness and regained it after being laid in a cool tomb (the swoon theory); (2) the disciples of Jesus stole his body and then lied about a resurrection (28:12‑15); (3) the disciples had hallucinations and dreams that they mistakenly confused with a physical resurrection; and (4) the resurrection is a personal experience in the heart of faith, not an event in history.

Behind such suggestions lies a deep-seated skepticism toward the supernatural, or at least toward whether a miraculous event could have happened. Such suggestions fail to take into account the fact that for NT authors and their audiences, the term “resurrection” could only have meant the literal reanimation of a dead corpse (see 1 Cor 15).

The historicity of Jesus’ resurrection and the historical reliability of the biblical accounts are supported by (1) the evidence of an empty tomb; (2) the presence of women as witnesses (no one would have made up a story with women as witnesses, since the testimony of a woman was considered to be less reliable than that of a man); (3) the varied but basically unified accounts of Jesus’ postresurrection appearances; (4) the transformation of the disciples from a fearful band into fearless followers; and (5) the disciples’ ability to overcome the scandal of following a crucified man (Deut 21:23 indicates that one who dies such a death has fallen under God’s curse).

Judaism had no concept of a dying and rising Messiah that could conveniently be applied to Jesus. Inventing something no one would find conceivable would have made little sense. The most reasonable conclusion is just what the NT announces: that Jesus did, in fact, rise from the dead.

Take a look inside the Illustrated Study Bible

Holy Week Reading Plan Day 6: Never Alone

“When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth.” John 16:13, NLT

Devotional from the Beyond Suffering Bible

After years spent with Jesus, the disciples were devastated to hear him say,
“I am going away” (16:5). They had been living with him for years. They had come to place their faith in him as their Messiah. He was their hope. Now he was leaving? This couldn’t be!

We will all lose people who are close to us. This is one of the most painful experiences of life. However, Jesus did not want the disciples to dwell on his impending death. He revealed that something very significant would happen once he left them: He would send an Advocate, the Holy Spirit, to guide his disciples.

Although it would be great to walk and talk with Jesus, we discover as believers that God in his wisdom has given us a greater gift. As children of God who have been given the Holy Spirit, we have God himself dwelling within each of us. Jesus was restricted by time and space as an embodied person, but the Holy Spirit isn’t—he is with us always. He helps us in our weakness (Rom 8:26) and serves as a guarantee of our inheritance as God’s children (Eph 1:14). Think about it. No matter what our circumstances—whether disabled, alone, suffering, or confused and afraid—God is with us in the person of the Holy Spirit. Jesus did not leave the world because he wanted to return to heaven. He departed so that he could send the Holy Spirit to be with us always.

Take a moment to thank the Lord for sending his Holy Spirit to empower you to overcome any obstacle and to accomplish the work of God. Allow the Spirit to guide you in your relationship with God and others. This is a lavish gift from God to his people; resolve to be sensitive to the leading of the Spirit in your life.

Take a look inside the Beyond Suffering Bible