Verse of the Day – Luke 5:26

Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”

Luke 5:26

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Jesus forgave a man who was lame, then showed he had authority to forgive by healing him. As exciting and important as this healing was, the most important thing was the reaction of those who witnessed it; they praised God out of a sense of amazed awe. They recognized that Jesus had come to minister as God’s very presence. When we understand who Jesus is and what he has done for us and will continue to do for us, we do the same thing today — we offer our praises with a sense of amazement and awe.

My Prayer…

Almighty God and Heavenly Father, I glorify your name and thank you for your grace which you so lavishly poured out on me through your Son and my Savior, Jesus, in whose name I offer this praise. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.


© 1998-2020, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. | Privacy Policy

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Sweeter Than Honey

His topic was racial tension. Yet the speaker remained calm and collected. Standing on stage before a large audience, he spoke boldly—but with grace, humility, kindness, and even humor. Soon the tense audience visibly relaxed, laughing along with the speaker about the dilemma they all faced: how to resolve their hot issue, but cool down their feelings and words. Yes, how to tackle a sour topic with sweet grace.

King Solomon advised this same approach for all of us: “Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones” (Proverbs 16:24). In this way, “The hearts of the wise make . . . their lips promote instruction” (v. 23).

Why would a powerful king like Solomon devote time to addressing how we speak? Because words can destroy. During Solomon’s time, kings relied on messengers for information about their nations, and calm and reliable messengers were highly valued. They used prudent words and reasoned tongues, not overreacting or speaking harshly, no matter the issue.

We all can benefit by gracing our opinions and thoughts with godly and prudent sweetness. In Solomon’s words, “To humans belong the plans of the heart, but from the LORD comes the proper answer of the tongue” (v. 1).

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Verse of the Day – John 5:25

I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.

John 5:25

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Aren’t you glad that not even death can stop us from hearing Jesus’ promised words to us: “RISE!”? We will hear his voice and live with him forever. That sure puts a lift in my future plans; what about you?

My Prayer…

Thank you, Almighty God, that Jesus’ resurrection demonstrated your power to destroy death. I have confidence in your Son’s promises to return, to raise me from the dead if I die before his return, and to take me home to be with you. In the Savior’s name. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.


© 1998-2020, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. | Privacy Policy

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Remembering

On Memorial Day, I think of many former servicemen but especially my dad and uncles, who served in the military during World War II. They made it home, but in that war hundreds of thousands of families tragically lost loved ones in service to their country. Yet, when asked, my dad and most soldiers from that era would say they were willing to give up their lives to protect their loved ones and stand for what they believed to be right.

When someone dies in defense of their country, John 15:13—“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends”—is often recited during the funeral service to honor their sacrifice. But what were the circumstances behind this verse?

When Jesus spoke those words to His disciples during the Last Supper, He was about to die. And, in fact, one of His small group of disciples, Judas, had already left to betray Him (13:18–30). Yet Jesus knew all of this and still chose to sacrifice His life for His friends and enemies.

Jesus was willing and ready to die for those who’d one day believe in Him, even for those who were still His enemies (Romans 5:10). In return, He asks His disciples (then and now) to “love each other” as He has loved them (John 15:12). His great love compels us to sacrificially love others—friend and foe alike.

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Verse of the Day – Galatians 5:24

Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.

Galatians 5:24

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

When we became Christians, we died to the old person of sin and were raised up a new person. While we have many of the same battles with temptation, we also now have the power of the resurrection and the Holy Spirit at work within us to help us.


VerseoftheDay.com related video by Phil Ware:


My Prayer…

Righteous Father, help me keep the dead and cast-away sin of my past far away from my heart and out of my life. May my life be a holy sacrifice that is pleasing to you. In the name of my Savior, Jesus, I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.


© 1998-2020, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. | Privacy Policy

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Talking Tables

Loneliness is one of the greatest threats to our sense of well-being, affecting our health through our behaviors on social media, food consumption, and the like. One study suggests that nearly two-thirds of all people—regardless of age or gender—feel lonely at least some of the time. One British supermarket has created “talking tables” in their store cafés as a way to foster connection between people. Those looking for human interaction simply seat themselves at a table designated for that purpose, joining others or indicating a desire to be joined. Conversation ensues, providing a sense of connection and community.

The people of the early church were committed to shared connection too. Without each other, they would likely have felt very alone in the practice of their faith, which was still new to the world. Not only did they “[devote] themselves to the apostles’ teaching” to learn what following Jesus meant, they also “[met] together in the temple courts” and “broke bread in their homes” for mutual encouragement and fellowship (vv. 42, 46).

We need human connection; God designed us that way! Painful seasons of loneliness point to that need. Like the people of the early church, it’s important for us to engage in the human companionship our well-being requires and to offer it to those around us who also need it.

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Verse of the Day – 1 Thessalonians 5:23

May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Thessalonians 5:23

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

We know that true righteousness and holiness are qualities possessed perfectly by only God. Amazingly, God uses his Spirit to make those qualities a growing reality in our lives when we will yield to his leadership. Yesterday, we committed to let the Spirit work on maturing us in our weakest areas. Let’s take an extra five or ten minutes sometime today, open God’s Word, and read several passages of Scripture that apply to our specific vulnerabilities. Then, let’s ask God’s Spirit to transform us in these areas to be more like Christ!

My Prayer…

Dear Father, may Jesus come soon with grace and glory! May I be found blameless on that day, dear Father, not by my power and effort, but because of your transforming power at work within me. In Jesus’ name I ask this. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.


© 1998-2020, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. | Privacy Policy

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Keepers of the Light

They call them “Keepers of the Light.”

At the lighthouse on the cape of Hatteras Island just off the North Carolina coast of the United States, there’s a memorial to those who’ve tended the light stations there since 1803. Shortly after the existing structure was moved inland because of shoreline erosion, the names of the keepers were etched on the old foundation stones and arranged into an amphitheater shape facing the new site. That way—as a placard explains—today’s visitors can follow in the historical keepers’ footsteps and “watch over” the lighthouse as well.

Jesus is the ultimate light-giver. He said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). That’s a radical thing for anyone to claim. But Jesus said it to affirm His relationship with His heavenly Father, the Creator of light and life who sent Him.

When we look to Jesus for salvation and follow His teaching, we are restored in relationship with God, and He gives us new power and purpose. His transforming life and love—“the light of all mankind” (1:4)—shines in us and through us, and out to a dark and sometimes dangerous world.

As followers of Jesus, we become “keepers of the light.” May others see His light shine from us and discover the life and hope He alone can give!

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Verse of the Day – Galatians 5:22-23

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Where the Holy Spirit lives, human character is changed and spiritual fruit can be seen. Certainly this maturity isn’t found overnight! It is, however, noticeable over the long haul of life. What fruit is the Spirit bearing in your life? In what ways have you matured? In what areas do you want the Spirit to exercise greater control? Why not take a moment and consciously yield those areas in which you struggle to him now, as you pray?

My Prayer…

Almighty and ever-present Father, thank you for empowering positive changes in my life as I seek to be more like Jesus. Please bring to full maturity the fruit the Holy Spirit is growing in my life. You know very well that I continue to struggle with __ in my life. I intentionally turn over that part of my life to your Spirit to redeem and fully sanctify. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.


© 1998-2020, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. | Privacy Policy

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Take Your Tears to God

Last summer, an orca named Talequah gave birth. Talequah’s pod of killer whales was endangered, and her newborn was their hope for the future. But the calf lived for less than an hour. In a show of grief that was watched by people around the world, Talequah pushed her dead calf through the cold waters of the Pacific Ocean for seventeen days before letting her go.

Sometimes believers in Jesus have a hard time knowing what to do with grief. Perhaps we fear that our sorrow might look like a lack of hope. But the Bible gives us many examples of humans crying out to God in grief. Lament and hope can both be part of a faithful response.

Lamentations is a book of five poems that express the sorrow of people who have lost their home. They’ve been hunted by enemies and were near death (3:52–54), and they weep and call on God to bring justice (v. 64). They cry out to God not because they have lost hope, but because they believe God is listening. And when they call, God does come near (v. 57).

It’s not wrong to lament the broken things in our world or in your life. God is always listening, and you can be sure that God will look down from heaven and see you.

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