OK, here's the plan (if God is willing):

1) Every day will be a new devotional. I have enough devotionals for every day for three years

2) Also as I can, I'll be posting on my new political blog (see bottom of page).

Some other housecleaning:

A) If you'd like to just get new postings sent to your email, just submit your address in the box on the left just below. There's just one possible downside, though. Occasionally I'll add a music video at the end that's relevant to the devotional, and you won't get them in the email sent to you. If I add a video though, I'll make sure to mention in the posting, so you'll know to come to the site to see it if you'd like.

B) I actually finished writing new blog posting for the TAWG at the end of 2016. So what I'm doing now is at the beginning of every month, I'll move the earliest month from 3 years ago ahead so that a "new" posting appears every day. That's why you won't find any postings for January 2014, for example.

C) When I started this Blog, I was using the 1984 edition of the NIV, and that’s what I linked to on the Biblegateway site. However, in 2011 Zondervan updated its edition and thus reworded a lot of the NIV translation. Therefore, all the links which went to the 1984 edition now redirect to the 2011 edition, which often has slightly different wording. Thus, part of my editing process has been to update my Scripture quotes in my postings. But I might have missed some, in which case you might see my quote in the posting as a little different from what comes up when you click on my citation link, since that redirects to the 2011 edition on the Biblegateway site. It's a good thing that we realize that the work of translation never ends, but it can be a kind of a pain on a site like this. If you see any difference in verbiage between my quote and what shows up as a link on the Biblegateway site, or if you hover over a link and it has "NIV1984" at the end of it, please notify me and I'll correct it.

D) I can't believe I have to say this, but here goes. At the end of every posting is a suggested short prayer that has to do with what we discussed. This is actually what I've prayed when I finished writing it. In no way am I asking you to pray the exact verbiage of my suggested prayer. It's just a springboard for your own prayer, nothing more. Quite frankly, I've never been a fan of praying rote prayers written by someone else. As with everything else I do here, to the degree it helps, great; to the degree it doesn't, chunk it.

As always, thank you so much for reading, even if it's to read one post. God bless.

[Oct 05]--Unsung Hero: Andrew

John 1:35-42

I’ve always had a soft spot for people who have famous siblings. If your brother is, say, the President of the United States, how do you live that down? It must be really tough, having people flock around someone you used to have squabbles with on a daily basis. In that spirit, I’d like to nominate for the status of “Unsung Hero” a man named Andrew. He had to face down all the petty jealousy and bitter envy which would've naturally arisen by having Peter (yes, that Peter) as his brother.

We don’t know much about him, but what we do know really appeals to me. I learned in Sunday School at a very early age that every time we see him in Scripture, he’s bringing someone to Jesus. I mean that literally: He introduced A) his brother Peter, B) the child with the loaves and fish, and C) some Greek seekers who wanted to meet his Savior.

But it’s his relationship with his brother that I want to focus on today. Andrew was originally a disciple of John the Baptist, but when the Baptist pointed towards Jesus as the “Lamb of God,” he started following the Man from Nazareth instead. He and another man (probably the author of this Gospel) literally followed Jesus to where he was staying and spent the day with him. This was enough to erase any doubt in his mind that Jesus was the long-awaited Messiah they'd been looking for. Once he placed his trust in Christ, he immediately thought of his brother and introduced one to the other.

Why is this so important? Not just because of what Andrew did, but because of what he didn’t do. He’s listed among the Twelve, so apparently he performed miracles in Jesus' name, but after one casual mention in the beginning of Acts (where he's listed along with other apostles), he 's never mentioned again in the Bible. There are some traditions that he preached some sermons, but nothing definite or world-famous. He never made a big name for himself, and he fades into history pretty quietly.

His brother, on the other hand, was a pillar of the church. When Jesus wanted to do something extraordinary but not share it with all of his disciples, he usually took aside Peter along with James and John. Every listing of the apostles in the Gospels has Peter's name first, and he was the natural spokesman for the rest of the Twelve. He made the great confession at Caesarea Philippi, and Jesus singled him out for a special one-on-one appearance after the Resurrection. In Acts chapter 2 he’s once again the spokesman, and proceeds to preach a sermon that led 3000 people to salvation in one day. Only Paul gets more attention in the book of Acts, and only Paul has more miraculous events listed as associated with him. And finally, Peter wrote two books of the Bible, adding to God's inspired word which will be last for all time.

But with all that happened later in his life, all that God did through Peter, he owed to Andrew. This is why I wanted to focus on him for a day. You might not be called to preach sermons that lead 3000 people to Christ at a sitting, but maybe God wants to use you to be an “Andrew” and introduce another “Peter” to Jesus. Are you willing to do the small task, no matter how insignificant it seems? When you are, it might turn out to be more significant than you thought.

Lord Jesus, whatever task you have for me, please prepare me for it. Whether anyone outside of my small circle ever knows my name, or whether I become world-famous as a mighty servant, it doesn’t matter to me. I’m doing this for an audience of One, right?

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