Daily Hope Devotional

  • Too Busy for Jesus?

    One year when our children were young, my wife decided that I would get to choose where the family went on vacation. I decided I wanted to do a totally spontaneous vacation with no planning whatsoever. As a pastor and leader, every day of my life is planned out. Planning a vacation doesn’t sound like fun!

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  • Jesus’ Christmas List

    For more than 50 years my family has kept a tradition of holding a birthday party for Jesus. It started when I was 3 years old and asked my mom, “What is Christmas?” My mom told me it was Jesus’ birthday. With terrific 3-year-old logic, I said, “We should have a birthday party!” And we did, complete with a birthday cake, Kool-Aid, songs, cake, and candles.

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  • Jesus Is Worth the Journey

    Searching for truth isn’t a part-time job. It takes everything you have. The Wise Men teach us this in the Christmas story. The Wise Men were willing to go to any length to find truth. Matthew 2:1 says, “When Jesus was born, some wise men from the east came to Jerusalem” (NCV). We can assume that the Wise Men traveled many miles from the Far East to the Middle East at great expense to find Jesus.

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  • Word to the Wise

    Look at any nativity scene, and you’ll likely see one set of characters that doesn’t seem to fit in the barn: the Wise Men. We’ve become used to them, but if you look at the scene closely, they appear out of place with their fancy clothes and special gifts. But to me, they’re the most fascinating people in the Christmas story. We don’t know much about them. We don’t know who they are or where they are from. The Bible calls them “magi.” Magi were a combination of philosophers, scientists, and astronomers. They were quite wealthy and well educated. But that’s really all we know about them.

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  • Share the Joy of Your Salvation

    If you want to get your joy back, you 1) admit it’s gone, then you 2) analyze the cause. Then, 3) correct what’s wrong, and 4) get an attitude of gratitude. There are three more steps to recovering your joy that we’ll talk about today.

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  • Obedience Is the Secret to Joy

    Joy is an easy thing to lose, but it’s also an easy thing to get back. After you admit that you’ve lost your joy, you need to analyze the cause. You have to look at your life and ask yourself, “How did I lose my joy? What is robbing my joy?”

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  • Finding Your Lost Joy

    What’s the easiest thing for you to lose? Your glasses? Your keys? Your mind? The easiest thing of all to lose is your joy. You can lose it with one phone call or email, a letter or conversation. You can watch a commercial on TV and lose your joy. It’s the easiest thing in the world to lose. And a lot of people in a lot of circumstances are conspiring to rob it from you.

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  • Joy No Matter What

    You have a fundamental need for joy in your life. Life without joy is overwhelming, overburdened, and oppressive. Studies have actually shown that the more joy we have in our lives, the more productive we are. I read an article in "US News and World Report" that said that corporations hire "joy consultants" to build up the joy in peoples’ lives so that employees can be more productive. It is true that you have more energy, more creativity, and more productivity when you have joy in your life.

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  • Enjoy Your Life

    You may be under a lot of stress right now because of the economy, but God still wants you to enjoy life. As a Christian, you can enjoy life because your conscience is clear. You can enjoy life because you are secure within God’s love. You can have fun and laugh in church. You can enjoy friends who don’t manipulate you because they are learning to be like Jesus, and that means they are learning to look out for the interests of others.

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  • The Spiritual Act of Journaling

    If you want to hear God speak, you need to withdraw to a quiet place, wait patiently and expectantly, ask God to give you a picture of what he wants to say to you, and then write down God’s responses to your questions. In the book of Habakkuk, the Lord commands the author to “write down clearly on tablets what I reveal to you, so that it can be read at a glance” (Habakkuk 2:2 TEV).

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The Hope of Christmas Audio Series

For too many people, Christmas has become a long to-do list that leaves them weary and wishing for Dec. 26. In this series of messages, Pastor Rick wants to help you remember the reason you celebrate Christmas and why it should change not just the way you celebrate the holidays but the rest of your life as well.

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