Daily Devotional

The Words of Hope Devotional is a non-profit, donor-supported publication whose goal is to encourage readers to grow in faith through the practice of daily Bible reading and prayer.

Today's Devotional: 
August 2, 2021

What Martha Missed

Read: Luke 10:38-42

One thing is necessary. (v. 42)

“If you’ve come to see the house, come another time. If you want to visit Mom, make yourself at home.” That’s what Jenny’s daughter said nearly every time I visited. The house was by no means unkempt. They just marched to a different beat. Nearing 100, with eyes failing and her body weak, Jenny spent most of the day on her sofa listening to the Bible and the Words of Hope devotional. If ever I met a “Mary,” Jenny fit the bill. To visit her was to visit with one who had spent much time at Jesus’ feet.

To be clear, it is impossible for us to spend every moment of our lives like Mary listening at Jesus’ feet. And Jesus is not suggesting that Martha was a bad person for serving. What Martha missed was the point of Jesus being in her home: to spend time with him. This was the “one thing” that was necessary. Martha welcomed Jesus into her home (v. 38) but became distracted by all the doing.

We followers of Jesus can be so busy doing good for Jesus, we miss the joy of being with Jesus. We receive Jesus into our hearts as Savior and Lord but then occupy ourselves serving him and somehow miss being with him. In John 15, Jesus called his disciples friends rather than servants (v. 15) and invited them to abide in him (v. 7). Abiding results in the bearing of fruit. Before we do for Jesus, let us be with him. This is the “good portion” (Luke 10:42). —Jon Opgenorth

As you pray, enjoy the presence of Jesus.

Tammy DeRuyter

What’s in a Name?

Read: Genesis 17:1-8, 15 No longer shall your name be called Abram, but . . . Abraham. (v. 5) Abram became Abraham, Sarai became Sarah, and Saul became Paul. Repeatedly, God emphasizes the power and importance of a name, from

Tammy DeRuyter


Read: Psalm 91 You will not fear the terror of the night. (v. 5) From the living room we could hear the intermittent voice in the bedroom. Were they talking again? Strange. The boys had been kissed goodnight hours ago.

Tammy DeRuyter

Tender Goodbyes

Read: 2 Timothy 1:1-14 I long to see you, that I may be filled with joy. (v. 4) In our family we hug and say “I love you” frequently as we come and go throughout the day. Perhaps you and

Tammy DeRuyter

Winning, Losing, and Love

Read: 1 Corinthians 13:1-11 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (v. 7) The dodgeball game was intense, fast, and furious. Both sides propelling the balls with competitive force and accuracy as laughter, mixed

Tammy DeRuyter

The Comparison Game

Read: Matthew 18:1-11 Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? (v. 1) “Am I the fastest runner you’ve ever seen? Am I the strongest kicker? Am I the highest . . . the lowest . . . the

Tammy DeRuyter

Pragmatic Faith

Read: Luke 14:28-36 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost . . . ? (v. 28) Through the sliding glass door, I could see all three children as they

Tammy DeRuyter

Indifference Betrays the Soul

Read: Mark 14:39-50 And they all left him and fled. (v. 50) A box full of cards and letters said it all: “Welcome to the family, Ben! Love you already!” “I can’t wait to be your new Mom! I love

Tammy DeRuyter

Ordinary Stuff

Read: 2 Timothy 4:6-18 When you come, bring the cloak . . . also the books, and above all the parchments. (v. 13) The drive was blissfully uneventful as we pulled the empty trailer behind our car—two hours’ drive away

Tammy DeRuyter

The Vote

Read: John 15:7-17 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. (v. 13) In my mind, this experience was over. It was just too hard. This had been my vision and I


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