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Despairing of Life

Some time ago a man just dropped in my office who obviously was despairing of life. It did not take long for me to know that he had virtually come to the end of his rope. He had no meaning, no purpose in existence. I had just been teaching to our church the Roman road of salvation and I decided that I would use that plan of salvation on him. I took that little book of...

Bored with Life

George Sanders, the cynical and sinister film star for over 30 years, took his own life in 1972. In his characteristically simple way he explained in his suicide note, “I am leaving because I am bored.” Increasingly, there are people who are either so bored with life or so pressed down by the circumstances of life that they do not find life worth living....

Overcoming Suffering thro...

I read with great interest some time ago an article in Texas Monthly about Georgi Vins, that Russian Baptist pastor who spent eight years in a Siberian prison camp because according to the Russians, he had injured the health of Russian people by preaching religious doctrine. His book, Testament from Prison, is characterized by simple joy. There is no word of complaint...

Focus on God

Some time ago, a man came to Norman Vincent Peale to share with him the problems of his life. The man was the manager of a hotel. He had a nervous breakdown early in his life, and he was afraid that he was about to have another one. He began to share all of his problems and his burdens with Dr. Peale. The more he shared those problems and burdens, the more uptight he...

How Satan Works

You know a Christian without assurance of his salvation is about as useless, about as ineffective as a person who has no salvation for he can never be joyous and he can never be positive and he can never be aggressive. If Satan can’t keep you from being saved he’ll try to keep you from knowing for sure that you are saved. And if he can’t do that, the...

Don’t You Quit!

Kim Linehan was one of the greatest long-distance swimmers in the world. She held the world record in the 1,500-meter freestyle competition from 1979 to 1987. According to her coach Paul Bergen, Kim did endless exercises and swam seven to 12 miles a day. The hardest part of her regimen? “Getting in the water,” she said. If getting in the water is the hard...

Great People Suffer

Great men are born out of hardship. If you read enough biographies you will get to thinking that there can’t be a great man except he who suffers. God knows that you can’t develop strong men in easy places. The man who has never had his faith tested doesn’t know whether he has faith. God wants to make you and me into men like Christ and he allows us...

Today's Devotional

Applied Christianity

I once talked with a man who was convinced that Christianity was a failure. His conclusion was based on the fact that while our cities are full of churches and preachers, our world is getting worse and worse.

If you think about this criticism, you must agree that there is much religion in America that has little effect on the daily lives of people. While the number of church members may grow each year, so does lawlessness and immorality. But does this mean that Christianity is a failure? No. At the close of World War I a soap manufacturer, walking down the street with his pastor, was bemoaning the “failure” of Christianity. He said to his pastor, “After 19 centuries of preaching and teaching Christ, there is still so much evil in the world. I don’t see how you can go on preaching the Gospel.” 

“I don’t see how you can go on manufacturing soap,” retorted the pastor. “Look at the little urchin playing in the gutter. Neck and ears filthy. There’s still so much dirt in the world. Soap is such a failure.”

“But,” countered the soap manufacturer, “If people will just apply the soap, they’ll be clean.”

“Yes,” concluded the pastor, “and if men will but apply Christ to their daily living, they will also be clean.” 

The evil of today’s world is not due to Christianity’s failure, but to our failure to apply our Christianity. As writer G.K. Chesterton said, "Christianity has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult and not tried."

Attend church Sunday, listen to God’s word, then apply it to your daily life and you and the world will both be better because of it.

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