I know I'm a few days late, but with it being the New Year and a time for new beginnings, I wanted to do a roundup of the best daily devotionals that I know of. (And here is a picture from my drive home of the frozen Potomac River from the Key Bridge.)
If you're reading this and don't know what a daily devotional is, well, I'll tell you. It's a daily reading, everyday of the year. And it's called a "devotional" because it's about Jesus, and the daily devos help Oh We of Little Faith be devoted to him. He's the man with a plan, and it's good to be reminded of this daily.
A lot of people just read their daily devos and say "that's that," but I've found that it's important not to neglect reading the actual Bible. If you have time to really, truly only read one spiritual something everyday, then make it the Bible. It's how God chooses to speak to us, soooo.... I mean.... if I had the choice.... I'd go with the B-I-B-L-E. Because that's the word for me.
But anyway, daily devos sure do refresh the soul. So here's the list of my favorite devos in no particular order:
Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in his Presence by Sarah Young -- easy to read, easy on the eyes, easy to absorb, and just all around soothing to the soul. I resisted reading Jesus Calling for way too long because I thought it was the typical girly devo that would be fluffy and light. I was entirely wrong.
Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman -- my mom's favorite devotional. She loves it so much that my dad got her a new copy for Christmas because her old copy was in tatters. There are several versions of Streams in the Desert, from the original publication to ones with updated language.
Morning and Evening: Daily Readings by C.H. Spurgeon -- simply a classic! This devo is for the go-getter since it has two (what?!?) readings a day. You guessed it -- in the morning and evening. Michael just started this devo and really loves it so far.
Everyday Prayers: 365 Days to a Gospel-Centered Faith by Scotty Smith -- prayers for those who can't pray for themselves. No, I'm kidding -- that's not true at all. This new(ish) devo looks so great. I actually gave a copy to each of my sister-in-laws for Christmas. I'm still debating getting one for myself as my prayer life could always use a boost (that is topic for another post altogether.)
Joy and Strength by Mary Wilder Tileston -- a devo for the beautifully minded. This devo has a verse or two from Scripture, then a line or two of poetry, and then a quotation from someone like Thomas A Kempis or Harriet Beecher Stowe. I did this devo in college and then it got lost in the back of my car for three years before it surfaced (that says a lot about the back of my car.) I cherish this little book!
My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers -- you know it's gonna be good coming from a man named Oswald. This is another Christian classic, and it happens to be what George W. read everyday of his presidency. (That may not be a ringing endorsement for some, but I promise this devo is worth your time.)
So that's the list, take it or leave it.
One word of encouragement: Don't kick yourself if you fall behind on reading a daily devotional. The worst feeling is when you finally sit down to read today's devo and you realize that you are 5 days (weeks, months, YEARS...) behind. Just start with today and go from there.
Because here's the thing: your righteousness isn't dependent on what you do (or how up-to-date you are with your daily devos,) but on what Jesus already did.
And that, right there, is good news.