2021.04.29 Daily Devotional
The Upper Room devotional reflection for Thursday, April 29, 2021 comes to us from Pàl Tünde of Pest, Hungary
John 3:14-21 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
I grew up without going to church or learning about God. As an adult, when I was expecting my third child, I found my dad’s Bible among his things after his death.
After finding the Bible, I looked at the verses he had underlined hoping to know him better. John 3:16 was one of the underlined verses. I read today’s quoted verse too and learned that if I did not believe in the name of Jesus Christ I was under judgment. But then I wondered, Why should I believe? When I once asked God for something, I got no answer.
The word judgment was often in my thoughts after that. I could not remember all that I had read from the verses, but that word stood out. I started to dwell on it. I began to worry about terrible things happening to me as a result of God’s judgment, like dying in childbirth or losing my son. I dreamed about it at night. For months, these thoughts brought me misery.
But then my child was born healthy. When I came home from the hospital, I read John 3 again and came upon verse 16: “For God so loved the world …” It was as if I had missed those words before! For several months, I had been afraid of something I had misunderstood. Now when I read the Bible and do not understand something, I bring it before God in prayer.
Prayer Focus: Mothers of Newborns
Prayer: Loving God, as I read the Bible, help me to understand your word. Amen.
Thought for the Day: Today I will seek new understanding from familiar scriptures.
— Cathy Lee Taylor
What scriptural passages inform and strengthen your faith, perhaps inspire you? Are there any passages that frighten you?
Cathy Lee Taylor reminds us that, no matter which scriptures we are focusing on, we must always remember the phrase, “God so loved the world”.