What is a Devotional?

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All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching,rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17, NIV)

Superhero Son asked me what “devotional” means.  He asked because he heard me talking about the upcoming book, With Unveiled Face, which is a daily devotional.  I tried to explain and found that my explanation was crazy complicated.  I decided my explanation better fit my adult audience rather than a four year old.

We learn from the Bible, Psalm 1 for example, that reading scripture allows a life source into our daily routine.  This life source is like a tree growing near a river.  The constant flow of information sustains us throughout our lives.

Devote means to concentrate upon or dedicate to something.  It comes from a Latin word from which we get the word “vow.”  I always thought of a vow as being a promise.  Therefore, if we are devoting our lives to living for God, we are promising to follow Him.  He explicitly tells us over and over to dive into scripture.  The New Testament tells us that scripture is “God-breathed.”  Whether you believe that God guided the hands that wrote the Bible or guided the decisions of which books to include in the Bible, does not matter. What matters is whether or not you devote your time to reading His Word.

A daily devotional assists us in that promise.  I don’t always use a daily devotional.  Sometimes I work my way through a Bible study or simply read through certain books of the Bible.  I bet you could have guessed this, but Proverbs is among my favorite books.  I am currently working through a study from my Bible app on my tablet.  I love technology!

My revised explanation for Superhero Son was that a devotional is a book we read everyday that helps us understand the Bible.  He proceeded to tell me that I wouldn’t need it if my Bible had pictures like his does.  If only it were that simple!

Do you study the Bible daily?  How has it impacted your life?


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