Title:          "God's Way Day by Day"
Author:      Dr. Charles Stanley
Publisher:  J. Countryman

There seems to be a deluge of daily devotional books in the stores these days.

Devotionals for all occasions and all ages. Devotionals for any time of day – morning, noon or night. Devotionals for any occupation. And probably most of us have plenty of them gathering dust on our coffee tables, night stands and bookshelves at home.

When a new one comes along, I am not usually inclined toward looking it over to consider a review. Especially if it's an attractive little gift book. I just figure it's mostly Christianity-lite and people buy them for gifts when they don't know what else to buy. Nothing wrong without that, but I write devos regularly for one monthly magazine and occasionally for another. And in my book (pun intended), devos are supposed to be deep. And books are most assuredly supposed to be read.

Well, here's a new daily devotional that begs to be read: "God's Way Day by Day" (J. Countryman, 2004). First of all, the fact that it's packed with thoughts from Dr. Charles Stanley is reason enough to make us pay attention.

Second, it is an attractive volume. Admit it, we often pick up a book to browse through it based on its visual appeal. This one is by J. Countryman, the inspirational gift book division of Thomas Nelson Publishers. It is the top-selling inspirational gift book publisher in the nation.

Third, it has depth. In its pages, Dr. Stanley's wisdom and insights are dispensed in concise yet powerful daily doses. There's one dated for every day of the year. Each day's entry includes only three elements – title, Scripture verse, and two or three short paragraphs of inspiration, challenge or insight.

It's not supposed to replace your daily time in the Word, but it would be a useful tool to keep on your desk or in a drawer at work, in your travel bag or in your auto's glove compartment. Not for reading in traffic, of course, but for waits at the dentist's office, Jiffy Lube or even the grocery check-out line.

When I check out a new devotional book, I always turn to the entries for significant days in my life. For January 10, my mother's birthday, Dr. Stanley wrote:

"The good news about God's wisdom is this: Every person can become wise. That isn't true for fame, fortune or education. Not all people have the intellectual ability to earn college degrees. Not all people have the talents or attributes that contribute to fame. Not all people have the skills and opportunities for acquiring wealth.

But every person can reverence God, can receive Jesus Christ as Savior, and can submit his or her life to God on a daily basis. Every person can become wise."

Those who knew my mom would say that's especially appropriate for her birthday. But it's certainly appropriate for any of us as we struggle sometimes with the inadequacies in our lives.

Charles Stanley is surely one of the our generation's most widely recognized preachers and Bible teachers. His radio/TV program "In Touch" can be heard in every nation on earth via radio, short wave, or television. In the U.S., it is seen on 204 TV stations and seven satellite networks. It is heard on 458 radio stations.

His is a voice that commands respect wherever it is heard. A daily dose of Dr. Stanley can go a long way toward maintaining our spiritual health.


Randall Murphree, a regular contributor to AgapePress, is editor of AFA Journal, a monthly publication of the American Family Association.

© 2004 AgapePress.  All rights reserved.  Used with permission.