Jim Burns Homeword Daily Devotional for Parenting and Christian Family

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HomeWord - November 30, 2012

 Basics Are Important

This devotional was written by Jim Liebelt

So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have. —2 Peter 1:12

The story has been told of an old ship captain. Every morning the captain would walk into his office, approach a locked desk drawer, take a key out of his pocket, unlock the drawer, take out a book, read and then replace the book and re-lock it in the drawer. He would then go about his duties for the day. For years, the captain’s lieutenant watched him go through this daily ritual.

Upon the captain’s retirement, the lieutenant was promoted to become the new captain. As part of the changing of the ship’s command, the old captain handed over the key to the desk drawer and said, “Guard your ways well, sir, that you follow the advice given in the book. If you do so, you will succeed.

The new captain couldn’t wait to see what the book contained that had so inspired the old captain and provided so much wisdom all of those years. He anticipated finding the words of another great sea captain, perhaps those of a great philosopher, or even the wisdom of the Scriptures. So he rushed right away to the office, unlocked the drawer, pulled out the book, and opened it. In the book he found only one page with writing upon it. On that page were two sentences:

“Port is left.”

“Starboard is right.”

This story is a simple reminder of how some of the basic things in life cannot be overlooked. Living as a Christ-follower is no different. While the Scriptures do challenge us to move towards maturity in our faith, the call to remember the basics is also found. There are some very basic components of the Christian life that we should remind ourselves of repeatedly in order to make sure that we don’t forget and move away from important areas like simple, loving devotion to Christ.

Today, reflect for a moment on how your life might be different if every day when you wake up you remind yourself of the basic truth that you are dead to sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus. This kind of daily reminder might just make a world of difference!


1. Why do you feel it is important to repeatedly remind yourself of the basics of following Christ? How do you address this need in your life?

2. What part of Christianity do you think you too easily overlook or forget? What can you do to regularly remind yourself of this area?


[2 Peter 3:1Romans 6:11-142 Corinthians 11:3Hebrews 5:11-14]

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