Reading devotional books has enriched my life as a girl, woman, student, wife, mother, friend, teacher, coach and writer. When I was a young teenager, a friend gave me a book entitled A Diary of Private Prayer by John Baillie. Each time I read one of the devotional prayers my own desire to pray grew. I jotted my personal thoughts and prayers in the margin of each one-page devotion.
Devotions Encourage Power to be Courageous and Change
Then on that New Year’s Eve when Richard and I shared our marriage vows, we received the devotional bookStreams in the Desert as a wedding gift. Repeatedly I read this compilation of the daily thoughts and scriptural insights from Mrs. Charles Cowman and her friends.
Year later as I faced burnout, a Christian co-worker gave me a copy of My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers. I read the daily devotions and slowly gained courage to make some much-needed positive changes.
Sharing the Power of Devotions
I’ve experienced the power of short encouraging messages from other writers to open my eyes to God’s truths. Because we tend to minister to others in the same ways in which we’ve been helped (note the number of Christian therapists who were themselves helped by a good therapist), writing devotionals has become a natural overflow of my own grateful heart.
Perhaps that’s one reason why I wrote a series of one-page devotions for children and their parents calledDevotions for Little Boys and Girls and a book of 365 devos (for grown-ups!) titled Meditations for Christians Who Try To Be Perfect and have now partnered with Regal Books for the release of It’s a Wonderful (Imperfect) Life: Devotional Readings for Women Who Strive Too Hard to Make it Just Right.
Devotions Encourage Relationship Beyond Performance
God is teaching this once overwhelmed and self-critical teenager (who grew up to be an overwhelmed and people-pleasing adult) that He loves and cherishes me whether or not I read the right books or pray just the right prayer or have perfectly consistent faith and emotions. He assures me it’s about our relationship, not about my performance. Reading devotions, along with the Bible, has helped me want to know God more intimately and to share with others. I’ve found power in that. How about you?
How has reading devotions helped you?