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Did you remember to read your Bible?

One Year Bible Reading Plan and Devotional

Today’s Bible Reading: August 8, 2022

Download the full one-year Bible reading plan here:

[Download not found]

Psalm 82-84

Romans 8:19-39

Hope in the Midst of Suffering

A reassuring promise for times of suffering

The promise of Romans 8:28 that God works for our good “in all things” is reassuring. It means that no matter the circumstances, the pandemics, or whatever life throws at us, God is at work in our lives so that all things work together for our good when we love God and have been called according to His purpose.

Yet, for those who have suffered greatly, it can be difficult to imagine what kind of “good” might arise from their tragic situations. What silver lining is there when a couple loses a child to miscarriage? What possible good could come from a father abandoning his family to start over with a new one? Or what “greater good” is God up to when a car accident leaves a teenager paralyzed? What good is there in a pandemic with many who are sick and dying? How can God take chronic anxiety, or depression, and work that for our good?  What about divorce, war, earthquakes, tsunamis…the list is seemingly endless.

The fact remains that there are some really crummy things in the world and in our lives, and many of them can’t be explained away or given a silver lining.

Romans 8:28 should be a verse of comfort. But in the midst of profound suffering, people still feel abandoned by God. Rejected. Cursed. How can things like death and disease work together for our good? In the midst of suffering we can remember five things from Romans 8 to bring hope into our suffering.

When we are suffering, we can remember that What God starts, He will finish

Philippians 1:6 says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”

Paul knows that for those who are suffering, it often feels like you are barely holding on. But in the midst of your suffering, you have this assurance: What God started in you, he’s going to finish. When you feel like you are barely holding on to God, be assured that he’s still holding on to you.

Here are three reasons we can know that God will finish the good work He has started in us:

We are sons and daughters of God

2 Corinthians 6:18 reminds us that God said, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be sons and daughters to Me, says the Lord Almighty.” As his sons and daughters, He love us with an everlasting love. You’ve been adopted into his family. You are a beloved child, and your Father sees you in your suffering. Whatever else is happening in your pain, you can be sure that your Father hasn’t left you alone in it. You are his child, and his heart is bound up with yours. What you feel, he feels. When you weep, he weeps.

God is Faithful

God is a Faithful God, He will never start something and not finish it. We can have faith in God and believe that what He started in your life, he will bring it to completion. The Bible says that God will never leave nor forsake you. So, He will never leave you halfway. Nor will He leave you just as he begins his good work in you.

We are His masterpiece

Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are God’s Masterpiece, created anew in Christ Jesus so that you can do good works that He prepared for you ahead of time. As His masterpiece, He will go above and beyond whatever you can expect or imagine in order to accomplish what he has started in you. He will move mountains and part seas to accomplish the good work he has started in you. God will finish what He started in You. 

When we are suffering, we can remember that All things are for our good – not all things are good

No matter how optimistic you are, some things just horrible.  Things like war, death, human trafficking, and the like are awful. But our God is more powerful than all the forces of evil and all the rotten things that happen in our lives.  God took death itself and used it to redeem all of humanity.  He reached down into the depths of our brokenness and began the restoration process.

People who quote Romans 8:28 often only quote the first part of the verse: “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God.” They overlook the rest of the verse, which may be the most important part: who are called according to his purpose.” Not those who are ignoring his call and disobeying the rules. He uses all things for this good purpose. So, what is that purpose? “For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son …” (Romans 8:29 CSB). The good purpose is that God uses every moment of our lives to make us more like Jesus.

When we are suffering, we can remember that God predestined us to be conformed into the image of His Son

God predestined us to be conformed into the image of His Son

The whole of you is already known by God.  And the the whole of you is already glorified.

That includes all of your mistakes, all of your victories, all of your tragedies, all of the funny little things that make you you, and all of the ordinary stuff that goes into your story.

We can say this because God does not exist in time like we do.  Although we have to live time out as though we are walking on a line, God sees the whole thing.

He sees your whole life. And God takes up that WHOLE story, every little part of it, and redeems it.  He transforms all of you so that you become more like Jesus.

God is redeeming all things

And so, Romans 8:28 does not mean that all things are good, but rather that God is redeeming all things. He is “making all things new” (Isaiah 43:19; Revelation 21:5). God is taking all of creation, even the broken stuff, and renewing and redeeming it. We can know that God is bigger than all our tragedies, all our losses and our failures.  Evil doesn’t win. In fact, in Christ’s death and resurrection, God enter into our brokenness and he redeemed the whole of it.

Even Christ suffered as He endured the cross. Can you imagine what the disciples thought on the day that Christ was crucified?  They were not expecting a bodily resurrection.  They thought that they were defeated.  And yet God surprised them.  He used torture and death to bring about new life.  Jesus was raised from the grave in order to defeat death itself.

God’s purpose is to make you more like Jesus

Because He is redeeming all things that means that God’s purpose in your life is to make you more like Jesus. The “good” Romans 8 talks about is not giving you better circumstances—as if every bad event will automatically lead to a greater one later on. The “good” of Romans 8 is God making you more like Jesus. At every moment of your life, God is working toward that.

We have to remember that “for our good” does not necessarily mean “for our pleasure” or “for our comfort and security”. God is transforming us into new creatures. He is making us into creatures who exist in harmony with him.  And this often involves suffering.  It involves the death of our self-will, that little voice inside us that wants to remain in control and be comfortable and secure. If we are to be conformed to the image of Christ, then we should expect that we will have to endure some things that we don’t like, some things that perhaps don’t make sense to us at the time.

When we are suffering, we can remember that Our story ends with a redeemed and glorified body

Paul says that “creation has been groaning together with labor pains until now … we also groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for adoption, the redemption of our bodies” (Romans 8:22–23).

There is a physical redemption coming, and our bodies literally groan for it. For a young, healthy, privileged person, this may not sound that fantastic. But for the elderly, for the sick, for the hurting, this groaning is a daily reality.

In Christ, our groaning is a promise that our bodies will one day be redeemed. And not just back to the days of our youth, but to a body like Christ’s resurrection body. We won’t ache or get sick or even struggle with weight gain.

While the Bible does give us some descriptions of what heaven is like, our human minds cannot comprehend the splendor and glory waiting on us in heaven. Yet, Paul says that in light of the glory experienced there, even the worst things we experience now are going to seem like a “momentary light affliction” (2 Corinthians 4:17).

Paul isn’t trying to minimize your present suffering. (He was, after all, a man who suffered greatly himself.) He’s trying to give you hope for a day when that suffering will be swallowed up in something greater – eternal life in the presence of God.

When we are suffering, we can remember that We may not see the “good” in this life

You may not see it in this life, but not a single second of your suffering is wasted. Not one thing happens in your life that the goodness of our God will not one day transform into glory. In a world consumed by pain, corruption, and futility, this is hope you can cling to for life. We have to take the long view when it comes to all things working together for our good.

The fruit of “all things work together for good” may not be seen in this life.  Because this life is not all that there is.  We are promised bodily resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:42).  We are promised more. Everything that happens to us here and now helps to shape our souls into creatures who bare the image of Christ and find joy in following God’s lead and submitting their own will to God.

If we cannot make sense of our suffering at the moment we go through it (or even for some time after), then we can at least rest assured that God will never leave us forsake us. In Isaiah 43:2, God promised: “I will be with you when you pass through the waters, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. You will not be scorched when you walk through the fire, and the flame will not burn you.”

If we submit our wills to God, then he will take the entirety of our life, all the stuff that makes us us, and he will redeem it; he will transform us into a new creation who have been conformed into the image of Christ.


Click here to listen to our devotions on Spotify be sure to follow us.

Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.


Week 31: August 1-7


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Romans 8:37 – Kneels Before God

Romans 8:37 says, “No, in all these things we are more than victorious through Him who loved us.” Our victories come when we are on our knees praying.

True Story

Scatter Kindness

Ephesians 4:32 says, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.” Kindness never goes out of style. Scatter some wherever you go.

Visit our YouTube Channels for Christian playlists and our short animated devotionals.

Animated Devotionals

Contemporary Christian Music Playlist

Southern Gospel Playlist

Just Hymns


God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars

by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on
  • Conversation Starters
    • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
    • Romance Builders
    • Relationship Builders
    • Personal reflections
    • Date ideas
    • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples

Now in the WCM Store! Buy your copy today for only $24.95

paperback edition

Also available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

Westbow logo
Christian book logo
amazon logo
Barnes and Nobel logo
walmart logo


 Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.


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Hope in the Midst of Suffering

One Year Bible Reading Plan and Devotional

Today’s Bible Reading: August 8, 2022

Download the full one-year Bible reading plan here:

[Download not found]

Psalm 82-84

Romans 8:19-39

Hope in the Midst of Suffering

A reassuring promise for times of suffering

The promise of Romans 8:28 that God works for our good “in all things” is reassuring. It means that no matter the circumstances, the pandemics, or whatever life throws at us, God is at work in our lives so that all things work together for our good when we love God and have been called according to His purpose.

Yet, for those who have suffered greatly, it can be difficult to imagine what kind of “good” might arise from their tragic situations. What silver lining is there when a couple loses a child to miscarriage? What possible good could come from a father abandoning his family to start over with a new one? Or what “greater good” is God up to when a car accident leaves a teenager paralyzed? What good is there in a pandemic with many who are sick and dying? How can God take chronic anxiety, or depression, and work that for our good?  What about divorce, war, earthquakes, tsunamis…the list is seemingly endless.

The fact remains that there are some really crummy things in the world and in our lives, and many of them can’t be explained away or given a silver lining.

Romans 8:28 should be a verse of comfort. But in the midst of profound suffering, people still feel abandoned by God. Rejected. Cursed. How can things like death and disease work together for our good? In the midst of suffering we can remember five things from Romans 8 to bring hope into our suffering.

When we are suffering, we can remember that What God starts, He will finish

Philippians 1:6 says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”

Paul knows that for those who are suffering, it often feels like you are barely holding on. But in the midst of your suffering, you have this assurance: What God started in you, he’s going to finish. When you feel like you are barely holding on to God, be assured that he’s still holding on to you.

Here are three reasons we can know that God will finish the good work He has started in us:

We are sons and daughters of God

2 Corinthians 6:18 reminds us that God said, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be sons and daughters to Me, says the Lord Almighty.” As his sons and daughters, He love us with an everlasting love. You’ve been adopted into his family. You are a beloved child, and your Father sees you in your suffering. Whatever else is happening in your pain, you can be sure that your Father hasn’t left you alone in it. You are his child, and his heart is bound up with yours. What you feel, he feels. When you weep, he weeps.

God is Faithful

God is a Faithful God, He will never start something and not finish it. We can have faith in God and believe that what He started in your life, he will bring it to completion. The Bible says that God will never leave nor forsake you. So, He will never leave you halfway. Nor will He leave you just as he begins his good work in you.

We are His masterpiece

Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are God’s Masterpiece, created anew in Christ Jesus so that you can do good works that He prepared for you ahead of time. As His masterpiece, He will go above and beyond whatever you can expect or imagine in order to accomplish what he has started in you. He will move mountains and part seas to accomplish the good work he has started in you. God will finish what He started in You. 

When we are suffering, we can remember that All things are for our good – not all things are good

No matter how optimistic you are, some things just horrible.  Things like war, death, human trafficking, and the like are awful. But our God is more powerful than all the forces of evil and all the rotten things that happen in our lives.  God took death itself and used it to redeem all of humanity.  He reached down into the depths of our brokenness and began the restoration process.

People who quote Romans 8:28 often only quote the first part of the verse: “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God.” They overlook the rest of the verse, which may be the most important part: who are called according to his purpose.” Not those who are ignoring his call and disobeying the rules. He uses all things for this good purpose. So, what is that purpose? “For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son …” (Romans 8:29 CSB). The good purpose is that God uses every moment of our lives to make us more like Jesus.

When we are suffering, we can remember that God predestined us to be conformed into the image of His Son

God predestined us to be conformed into the image of His Son

The whole of you is already known by God.  And the the whole of you is already glorified.

That includes all of your mistakes, all of your victories, all of your tragedies, all of the funny little things that make you you, and all of the ordinary stuff that goes into your story.

We can say this because God does not exist in time like we do.  Although we have to live time out as though we are walking on a line, God sees the whole thing.

He sees your whole life. And God takes up that WHOLE story, every little part of it, and redeems it.  He transforms all of you so that you become more like Jesus.

God is redeeming all things

And so, Romans 8:28 does not mean that all things are good, but rather that God is redeeming all things. He is “making all things new” (Isaiah 43:19; Revelation 21:5). God is taking all of creation, even the broken stuff, and renewing and redeeming it. We can know that God is bigger than all our tragedies, all our losses and our failures.  Evil doesn’t win. In fact, in Christ’s death and resurrection, God enter into our brokenness and he redeemed the whole of it.

Even Christ suffered as He endured the cross. Can you imagine what the disciples thought on the day that Christ was crucified?  They were not expecting a bodily resurrection.  They thought that they were defeated.  And yet God surprised them.  He used torture and death to bring about new life.  Jesus was raised from the grave in order to defeat death itself.

God’s purpose is to make you more like Jesus

Because He is redeeming all things that means that God’s purpose in your life is to make you more like Jesus. The “good” Romans 8 talks about is not giving you better circumstances—as if every bad event will automatically lead to a greater one later on. The “good” of Romans 8 is God making you more like Jesus. At every moment of your life, God is working toward that.

We have to remember that “for our good” does not necessarily mean “for our pleasure” or “for our comfort and security”. God is transforming us into new creatures. He is making us into creatures who exist in harmony with him.  And this often involves suffering.  It involves the death of our self-will, that little voice inside us that wants to remain in control and be comfortable and secure. If we are to be conformed to the image of Christ, then we should expect that we will have to endure some things that we don’t like, some things that perhaps don’t make sense to us at the time.

When we are suffering, we can remember that Our story ends with a redeemed and glorified body

Paul says that “creation has been groaning together with labor pains until now … we also groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for adoption, the redemption of our bodies” (Romans 8:22–23).

There is a physical redemption coming, and our bodies literally groan for it. For a young, healthy, privileged person, this may not sound that fantastic. But for the elderly, for the sick, for the hurting, this groaning is a daily reality.

In Christ, our groaning is a promise that our bodies will one day be redeemed. And not just back to the days of our youth, but to a body like Christ’s resurrection body. We won’t ache or get sick or even struggle with weight gain.

While the Bible does give us some descriptions of what heaven is like, our human minds cannot comprehend the splendor and glory waiting on us in heaven. Yet, Paul says that in light of the glory experienced there, even the worst things we experience now are going to seem like a “momentary light affliction” (2 Corinthians 4:17).

Paul isn’t trying to minimize your present suffering. (He was, after all, a man who suffered greatly himself.) He’s trying to give you hope for a day when that suffering will be swallowed up in something greater – eternal life in the presence of God.

When we are suffering, we can remember that We may not see the “good” in this life

You may not see it in this life, but not a single second of your suffering is wasted. Not one thing happens in your life that the goodness of our God will not one day transform into glory. In a world consumed by pain, corruption, and futility, this is hope you can cling to for life. We have to take the long view when it comes to all things working together for our good.

The fruit of “all things work together for good” may not be seen in this life.  Because this life is not all that there is.  We are promised bodily resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:42).  We are promised more. Everything that happens to us here and now helps to shape our souls into creatures who bare the image of Christ and find joy in following God’s lead and submitting their own will to God.

If we cannot make sense of our suffering at the moment we go through it (or even for some time after), then we can at least rest assured that God will never leave us forsake us. In Isaiah 43:2, God promised: “I will be with you when you pass through the waters, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. You will not be scorched when you walk through the fire, and the flame will not burn you.”

If we submit our wills to God, then he will take the entirety of our life, all the stuff that makes us us, and he will redeem it; he will transform us into a new creation who have been conformed into the image of Christ.


Click here to listen to our devotions on Spotify be sure to follow us.

Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.


Week 31: August 1-7


Visit our three retail experiences:

Bible study and Self Care Resources
Christian Tees, Bags, Mugs & More
We are an affiliate of CBD. We earn a commission on any purchase you make when you enter the store through this link. However, your CBD price is the same. Visit CBD for Bibles, Bible studies, gifts & more

Romans 8:37 – Kneels Before God

Romans 8:37 says, “No, in all these things we are more than victorious through Him who loved us.” Our victories come when we are on our knees praying.

True Story

Scatter Kindness

Ephesians 4:32 says, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.” Kindness never goes out of style. Scatter some wherever you go.

Visit our YouTube Channels for Christian playlists and our short animated devotionals.

Animated Devotionals

Contemporary Christian Music Playlist

Southern Gospel Playlist

Just Hymns


God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars

by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on
  • Conversation Starters
    • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
    • Romance Builders
    • Relationship Builders
    • Personal reflections
    • Date ideas
    • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples

Now in the WCM Store! Buy your copy today for only $24.95

paperback edition

Also available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

Westbow logo
Christian book logo
amazon logo
Barnes and Nobel logo
walmart logo


 Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.


Bible Studies, Bibles, Books & More

Christianbook Distributors logo
Everything Christian for less!

Looking for a Bible Study, Bible, book or Christian gift? We are an affiliate with Christianbook Distributors and receive an 8% commission on any item purchased through one of our links. However, the commission never increases your cost of any item. View some of our favorite items by clicking on the logo and thank you for supporting our ministry.

Christianbook Distributors Search:
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Wellspring Christian Ministries receives an 8% commission on any purchased made from Christian Book Distributors through any affiliate link on this site. Your price for any item is the same as purchasing from CBD directly.


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Did you remember to read your Bible?

One Year Bible Reading Plan and Devotional

Today’s Bible Reading: August 7, 2022

Download the full one-year Bible reading plan here:

[Download not found]

Psalm 79-81

Romans 8:1-18

The Most Deadliest Virus

Did you know there is a much more deadlier virus than COVID-19 on the loose – One with 100% mortality rate? While the variants of COVID-19 is once again in the spotlight, acting the lead role of a villain in a horror movie, there is a more deadlier and contagious problem than Covid-19 on the loose. It has stolen, destroyed and killed so many lives and devastated families since the dawn of man kind. It started in the Garden of Eden and continues to today. No one is exempt. Every single person has it.

What is this deadly virus?

It is the SIN of mankind which eventually results in DEATH. The ever increasing COVID-19 death totals truly scares us. Little do we realize that worldwide, aside from these virus-related deaths, even in normal times 3 people die every second, 180 die every minute, almost 11,000 die every hour, and more than 250,000 perish every day. These statistics are shocking, aren’t they?

We are all living in a fallen, infectious, contaminated world dominated by SIN and all it’s ramifications which ultimately results in DEATH.

Symptoms of the SIN virus

Similar to cancer, the SIN virus spreads silently. Many people lead normal lives with cancer, without seeking treatment, because they don’t know they’re carrying a root of death within themselves. Those who live in sin often lead normal lives as well, without seeking reconciliation with God, because they don’t know they’re also carrying a root within that will lead them to hell.

But, just as cancer and other fatal diseases display symptoms, sin also has its symptoms. And the symptom of sin is disobedience.

A sin can be very well hidden, but the actions and reactions of a disobedient person show that sin is in their heart. The same way an internal disease manifests itself externally, in a visible form, through strange signs in the body, sin will also manifest itself externally through rebellious attitudes, in such a way that, what was invisible becomes visible.

Disobedience may be the tip of the iceberg of pride, malice, envy, racism, arrogance, lack of fear, being apart from God, selfishness, spiritual weakness, greed, sexual immorality, idolatry, and all other sins. 

Who has contracted the SIN virus?

The symptoms of SIN may or may not be visible on the outside, but the Bible tells us that every single person on the earth has tested positive for the SIN. There’s traces of it in our head, heart, and hands, and its effects cut across our body, soul and spirit. Globally, as of July 30, 2021, there have been 196,553,009 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 4,200,412 deaths, reported to WHO. That means that of those who contracted the COVID-19 virus, 2.14% died from the virus world wide. Here in the U.S. the CDC reports a total of 34,926,462 confirmed cases with 610,873 deaths. So, for the U.S 1.75% of those who contracted COVID-19 died from the virus.

But the Bible tells us that every single person that has lived, other than Jesus, has contracted the SIN virus. Romans 3:23 says, “ for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” In fact, Adam and Eve were the first to contract the SIN virus and then they passed the virus down to every other person. One could say it’s in our DNA. Each one of us were born with it.

What is Sin?

Sin is described in the Bible as transgression of the law of God (1 John 3:4) and rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7; Joshua 1:18). Genesis 3 describes Adam and Eve’s rebellion against God and His command. Because of Adam and Eve’s disobedience, sin has been an “inheritance” for all of their descendants. Romans 5:12 tells us that, through Adam, sin entered the world and so death was passed on to all men because all have sinned. This passed-on sin is known as inherited sin. Just as we inherit physical characteristics from our parents, we inherit our sinful nature from Adam.

So, 100% of the world population is infected with the SIN virus. Not only does 100% of the population have the SIN virus, 100% of the world-wide population will eventually die because of SIN. No one is immune and no one can escape the plague of SIN and DEATH.

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death…”

The Origin of the SIN Virus

Since Covid 19 was discovered, there has been much research into where and how the virus started. But the Bible is very clear about the origin of SIN and DEATH. In the beginning God created a beautiful home full of potential for His creation of mankind and He placed the very first family in the Garden of Eden. Looking at everything God created, God Himself declared it all “GOOD.” It was all pure without any contamination. So what happened?

God didn’t create Adam and Eve as puppets on a string, they had A CHOICE, either they could trust and obey God to rule the world according to God’s standard OR they could eat from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil and rule the world according to their own standards. Using their free will they decided to cease living God’s way and chose to live their own way. As a result SIN, and consequently DEATH, starts leaking out into the world. Apostle Paul summarizes it in Romans 5:12. “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned”

Notice the progression in Romans 5:12: sin entered the world through Adam, death follows sin, death comes to all people, all people sin because they inherit sin from Adam.

The SIN Virus is a weapon against humanity

Satan is God’s enemy – but he is also our enemy. In the Garden of Eden, man was deceived to unleash a weapon against himself using his free will by disobeying God. And Satan has dedicated himself to continue deceiving mankind so that we will remove God from our lives. But the result is always the same – death. Proverbs 16:25 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.

Consequences of the SIN Virus

Every choice comes with a consequence. But when we choose to live our way, instead of God’s way, things start falling apart and we begin falling into a downward spiral of moral corruption and rebellion. Generation after generation the intensity and the magnitude of human rebellion increases until it reaches its the results that we see in our world today. The whole world is drowning again in a vicious cycle of Sin and death. It all started with a single act of disobedience and multiplied over the generations to a more destructive and resistant variants. Now what is the status of the good, perfect and uncontaminated world God created. It is all infected with the SIN virus and moving towards eternal DEATH.

God’s plan to rescue humanity

As hard as people have worked to find a vaccine effective against COVID-29, there is no one who can create a cure for the SIN Virus. Nor is there any person who save himself from it. So who is going to bring salvation to mankind? What kind of cure is powerful enough to neutralize the adverse effects of the poison released by the Sin virus? Who is the virologist who can calculate the correct genetic code for the right antivenom to confront and neutralize Sin and cure humanity of its effects? Thankfully, God had a plan to rescue humanity.

Who is capable to save humanity from the SIN Virus?

Even after repeated failures on the part of man, God is faithful to keep His promises. The moment the Sin birus entered into humanity in the Garden of Eden, God promised man that He himself will solve this problem, that God himself will provide THE WAY out for man. Through a promise which will never change God shows mankind a great light at the end of the dark tunnel of sin. God promised to raise THE SEED OF THE WOMAN who will put an end to the SIN and DEATH.

And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Genesis 3:15

No matter how hopeless the situation seems our God can deliver us. A deadly contagious virus has invaded the whole worth but we still have hope. No matter how messed up humanity may seem God is able to bring the answer. And that answer demonstrates the total reckless and extravagant love of God for all mankind. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” That’s right! His Only Son – Jesus – was sent into the world to save humanity from the SIN Virus.

The Antidote to Sin and Death

Yes, Jesus is God’s antidote to the Sin Virus and the death it brings. To understand this, let us refresh our memory on what we learned about producing antibodies for a venom in our science class. For example let’s consider how the antigen is produced to fight snake venom. The venom from the snake is obtained and injected to the host animal. When the uninfected host is injected the venom it’s pure blood forms the antivenom to fight the snake’s venom. The blood from the animal is drawn out the produced antibodies separated then concentrated and injected into the infected person.

Let’s unlock the principle here. An uninfected, pure host has to be injected with the venom of sin and the host’s blood which contains the antidote needs to be drawn out. What do you think would be the status of the host when all this happens?

2 Corinthians 5:11 says, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

The Antidote was made on the Cross

This is what happened on the cross. Jesus lived a perfectly holy life in obedience to God and all His commandments. He never sinned. If He had sinned even once, then He could not have paid the penalty for our sin and become the sacrifice for us. He died as God’s chosen sacrifice to take away the sins of mankind. Our Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to counteract the deadly poison of sin.

The only antidote for sin and death is God’s gift of eternal life through the sacrifice of Jesus our Lord. Because “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), we need a perfect, sinless sacrifice to wash away our sin, something we are powerless to do on our own. Thankfully, Jesus Christ is the Savior from sin! Our sin has been crucified on the cross of Jesus, and now “in Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7). God, in His infinite wisdom, has provided the remedy for the sin we inherit, and that remedy is available to everyone: “Therefore, my brothers, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you” (Acts 13:38).

The Antidote is sufficient

He rose from the grave and proved that His sacrifice alone was sufficient. He ascended to the Father’s right hand and He freely gives the VACCINE, eternal life, to all who repent of their sins and trust Him as Lord and Savior and receive Him by faith. It’s all provided freely, we don’t have to be in the waiting list, stand in line, make an appointment, bribe someone to get it, be scared of the side effects or worry about a second dose. It’s all given to humanity free of charge because Jesus paid the price for us.

So this is it. God provided the WAY, the cure, Jesus the Messiah. God provided the spotless lamb to die on our behalf. He died and His sacrifice gave us life. Humanity is no longer doomed to eternal destruction but we have a WAY out.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)

Our only hope against the SIN Virus

It is obvious the whole world is drowning in a sea of SIN virus. Humanity, along with the whole of creation, is groaning for salvation. I’m afraid the COVID 19 vaccine can’t fix this problem. The only hope for this dying world is to receive salvation, the cure provided by God Himself. Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” There is no other way.

The only question is, have you received the free gift Jesus offers to you that will save your from the SIN virus? There’s no time to waste, now is time to receive Jesus into your heart and give your life to Him. 2 Corinthians 6:2 says, “Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” It is a decision and step of faith that you take in this life. Once you die, it will be too late to decide then. Romans 10:9-19 says, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”

What will you do with the free antidote for the SIN Virus?

Remember earlier we said that every choice has a consequence? What you chose to do with the free antidote to the SIN Virus that God has provided, has eternal consequences. Just as you can chose to get vaccinated against COVID, you can choose to accept the free antidote for sin that God has already provided for you. When you accept by faith that Jesus is God’s antidote and that Jesus paid the price of death for you because of your sin, you will have the victorious consequence of eternal life. But if you chose to reject Jesus as the antidote that saves your from your SIN virus, your consequence is eternal separation from God in Hell. God has graciously provided the antidote. It is His gift to us. You only have to reach out and accept it by faith. What will you do with the free antidote for the SIN Virus?


Click here to listen to our devotions on Spotify be sure to follow us.

Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.


Week 31: August 1-7


Visit our three retail experiences:

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We are an affiliate of CBD. We earn a commission on any purchase you make when you enter the store through this link. However, your CBD price is the same. Visit CBD for Bibles, Bible studies, gifts & more

Romans 8:37 – Kneels Before God

Romans 8:37 says, “No, in all these things we are more than victorious through Him who loved us.” Our victories come when we are on our knees praying.

True Story

Scatter Kindness

Ephesians 4:32 says, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.” Kindness never goes out of style. Scatter some wherever you go.

Visit our YouTube Channels for Christian playlists and our short animated devotionals.

Animated Devotionals

Contemporary Christian Music Playlist

Southern Gospel Playlist

Just Hymns


God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars

by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on
  • Conversation Starters
    • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
    • Romance Builders
    • Relationship Builders
    • Personal reflections
    • Date ideas
    • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples

Now in the WCM Store! Buy your copy today for only $24.95

paperback edition

Also available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

Westbow logo
Christian book logo
amazon logo
Barnes and Nobel logo
walmart logo


 Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.


Bible Studies, Bibles, Books & More

Christianbook Distributors logo
Everything Christian for less!

Looking for a Bible Study, Bible, book or Christian gift? We are an affiliate with Christianbook Distributors and receive an 8% commission on any item purchased through one of our links. However, the commission never increases your cost of any item. View some of our favorite items by clicking on the logo and thank you for supporting our ministry.

Christianbook Distributors Search:
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Wellspring Christian Ministries receives an 8% commission on any purchased made from Christian Book Distributors through any affiliate link on this site. Your price for any item is the same as purchasing from CBD directly.


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The Most Deadliest Virus

One Year Bible Reading Plan and Devotional

Today’s Bible Reading: August 7, 2022

Download the full one-year Bible reading plan here:

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Psalm 79-81

Romans 8:1-18

The Most Deadliest Virus

Did you know there is a much more deadlier virus than COVID-19 on the loose – One with 100% mortality rate? While the variants of COVID-19 is once again in the spotlight, acting the lead role of a villain in a horror movie, there is a more deadlier and contagious problem than Covid-19 on the loose. It has stolen, destroyed and killed so many lives and devastated families since the dawn of man kind. It started in the Garden of Eden and continues to today. No one is exempt. Every single person has it.

What is this deadly virus?

It is the SIN of mankind which eventually results in DEATH. The ever increasing COVID-19 death totals truly scares us. Little do we realize that worldwide, aside from these virus-related deaths, even in normal times 3 people die every second, 180 die every minute, almost 11,000 die every hour, and more than 250,000 perish every day. These statistics are shocking, aren’t they?

We are all living in a fallen, infectious, contaminated world dominated by SIN and all it’s ramifications which ultimately results in DEATH.

Symptoms of the SIN virus

Similar to cancer, the SIN virus spreads silently. Many people lead normal lives with cancer, without seeking treatment, because they don’t know they’re carrying a root of death within themselves. Those who live in sin often lead normal lives as well, without seeking reconciliation with God, because they don’t know they’re also carrying a root within that will lead them to hell.

But, just as cancer and other fatal diseases display symptoms, sin also has its symptoms. And the symptom of sin is disobedience.

A sin can be very well hidden, but the actions and reactions of a disobedient person show that sin is in their heart. The same way an internal disease manifests itself externally, in a visible form, through strange signs in the body, sin will also manifest itself externally through rebellious attitudes, in such a way that, what was invisible becomes visible.

Disobedience may be the tip of the iceberg of pride, malice, envy, racism, arrogance, lack of fear, being apart from God, selfishness, spiritual weakness, greed, sexual immorality, idolatry, and all other sins. 

Who has contracted the SIN virus?

The symptoms of SIN may or may not be visible on the outside, but the Bible tells us that every single person on the earth has tested positive for the SIN. There’s traces of it in our head, heart, and hands, and its effects cut across our body, soul and spirit. Globally, as of July 30, 2021, there have been 196,553,009 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 4,200,412 deaths, reported to WHO. That means that of those who contracted the COVID-19 virus, 2.14% died from the virus world wide. Here in the U.S. the CDC reports a total of 34,926,462 confirmed cases with 610,873 deaths. So, for the U.S 1.75% of those who contracted COVID-19 died from the virus.

But the Bible tells us that every single person that has lived, other than Jesus, has contracted the SIN virus. Romans 3:23 says, “ for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” In fact, Adam and Eve were the first to contract the SIN virus and then they passed the virus down to every other person. One could say it’s in our DNA. Each one of us were born with it.

What is Sin?

Sin is described in the Bible as transgression of the law of God (1 John 3:4) and rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7; Joshua 1:18). Genesis 3 describes Adam and Eve’s rebellion against God and His command. Because of Adam and Eve’s disobedience, sin has been an “inheritance” for all of their descendants. Romans 5:12 tells us that, through Adam, sin entered the world and so death was passed on to all men because all have sinned. This passed-on sin is known as inherited sin. Just as we inherit physical characteristics from our parents, we inherit our sinful nature from Adam.

So, 100% of the world population is infected with the SIN virus. Not only does 100% of the population have the SIN virus, 100% of the world-wide population will eventually die because of SIN. No one is immune and no one can escape the plague of SIN and DEATH.

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death…”

The Origin of the SIN Virus

Since Covid 19 was discovered, there has been much research into where and how the virus started. But the Bible is very clear about the origin of SIN and DEATH. In the beginning God created a beautiful home full of potential for His creation of mankind and He placed the very first family in the Garden of Eden. Looking at everything God created, God Himself declared it all “GOOD.” It was all pure without any contamination. So what happened?

God didn’t create Adam and Eve as puppets on a string, they had A CHOICE, either they could trust and obey God to rule the world according to God’s standard OR they could eat from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil and rule the world according to their own standards. Using their free will they decided to cease living God’s way and chose to live their own way. As a result SIN, and consequently DEATH, starts leaking out into the world. Apostle Paul summarizes it in Romans 5:12. “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned”

Notice the progression in Romans 5:12: sin entered the world through Adam, death follows sin, death comes to all people, all people sin because they inherit sin from Adam.

The SIN Virus is a weapon against humanity

Satan is God’s enemy – but he is also our enemy. In the Garden of Eden, man was deceived to unleash a weapon against himself using his free will by disobeying God. And Satan has dedicated himself to continue deceiving mankind so that we will remove God from our lives. But the result is always the same – death. Proverbs 16:25 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.

Consequences of the SIN Virus

Every choice comes with a consequence. But when we choose to live our way, instead of God’s way, things start falling apart and we begin falling into a downward spiral of moral corruption and rebellion. Generation after generation the intensity and the magnitude of human rebellion increases until it reaches its the results that we see in our world today. The whole world is drowning again in a vicious cycle of Sin and death. It all started with a single act of disobedience and multiplied over the generations to a more destructive and resistant variants. Now what is the status of the good, perfect and uncontaminated world God created. It is all infected with the SIN virus and moving towards eternal DEATH.

God’s plan to rescue humanity

As hard as people have worked to find a vaccine effective against COVID-29, there is no one who can create a cure for the SIN Virus. Nor is there any person who save himself from it. So who is going to bring salvation to mankind? What kind of cure is powerful enough to neutralize the adverse effects of the poison released by the Sin virus? Who is the virologist who can calculate the correct genetic code for the right antivenom to confront and neutralize Sin and cure humanity of its effects? Thankfully, God had a plan to rescue humanity.

Who is capable to save humanity from the SIN Virus?

Even after repeated failures on the part of man, God is faithful to keep His promises. The moment the Sin birus entered into humanity in the Garden of Eden, God promised man that He himself will solve this problem, that God himself will provide THE WAY out for man. Through a promise which will never change God shows mankind a great light at the end of the dark tunnel of sin. God promised to raise THE SEED OF THE WOMAN who will put an end to the SIN and DEATH.

And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Genesis 3:15

No matter how hopeless the situation seems our God can deliver us. A deadly contagious virus has invaded the whole worth but we still have hope. No matter how messed up humanity may seem God is able to bring the answer. And that answer demonstrates the total reckless and extravagant love of God for all mankind. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” That’s right! His Only Son – Jesus – was sent into the world to save humanity from the SIN Virus.

The Antidote to Sin and Death

Yes, Jesus is God’s antidote to the Sin Virus and the death it brings. To understand this, let us refresh our memory on what we learned about producing antibodies for a venom in our science class. For example let’s consider how the antigen is produced to fight snake venom. The venom from the snake is obtained and injected to the host animal. When the uninfected host is injected the venom it’s pure blood forms the antivenom to fight the snake’s venom. The blood from the animal is drawn out the produced antibodies separated then concentrated and injected into the infected person.

Let’s unlock the principle here. An uninfected, pure host has to be injected with the venom of sin and the host’s blood which contains the antidote needs to be drawn out. What do you think would be the status of the host when all this happens?

2 Corinthians 5:11 says, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

The Antidote was made on the Cross

This is what happened on the cross. Jesus lived a perfectly holy life in obedience to God and all His commandments. He never sinned. If He had sinned even once, then He could not have paid the penalty for our sin and become the sacrifice for us. He died as God’s chosen sacrifice to take away the sins of mankind. Our Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to counteract the deadly poison of sin.

The only antidote for sin and death is God’s gift of eternal life through the sacrifice of Jesus our Lord. Because “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), we need a perfect, sinless sacrifice to wash away our sin, something we are powerless to do on our own. Thankfully, Jesus Christ is the Savior from sin! Our sin has been crucified on the cross of Jesus, and now “in Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7). God, in His infinite wisdom, has provided the remedy for the sin we inherit, and that remedy is available to everyone: “Therefore, my brothers, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you” (Acts 13:38).

The Antidote is sufficient

He rose from the grave and proved that His sacrifice alone was sufficient. He ascended to the Father’s right hand and He freely gives the VACCINE, eternal life, to all who repent of their sins and trust Him as Lord and Savior and receive Him by faith. It’s all provided freely, we don’t have to be in the waiting list, stand in line, make an appointment, bribe someone to get it, be scared of the side effects or worry about a second dose. It’s all given to humanity free of charge because Jesus paid the price for us.

So this is it. God provided the WAY, the cure, Jesus the Messiah. God provided the spotless lamb to die on our behalf. He died and His sacrifice gave us life. Humanity is no longer doomed to eternal destruction but we have a WAY out.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)

Our only hope against the SIN Virus

It is obvious the whole world is drowning in a sea of SIN virus. Humanity, along with the whole of creation, is groaning for salvation. I’m afraid the COVID 19 vaccine can’t fix this problem. The only hope for this dying world is to receive salvation, the cure provided by God Himself. Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” There is no other way.

The only question is, have you received the free gift Jesus offers to you that will save your from the SIN virus? There’s no time to waste, now is time to receive Jesus into your heart and give your life to Him. 2 Corinthians 6:2 says, “Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” It is a decision and step of faith that you take in this life. Once you die, it will be too late to decide then. Romans 10:9-19 says, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”

What will you do with the free antidote for the SIN Virus?

Remember earlier we said that every choice has a consequence? What you chose to do with the free antidote to the SIN Virus that God has provided, has eternal consequences. Just as you can chose to get vaccinated against COVID, you can choose to accept the free antidote for sin that God has already provided for you. When you accept by faith that Jesus is God’s antidote and that Jesus paid the price of death for you because of your sin, you will have the victorious consequence of eternal life. But if you chose to reject Jesus as the antidote that saves your from your SIN virus, your consequence is eternal separation from God in Hell. God has graciously provided the antidote. It is His gift to us. You only have to reach out and accept it by faith. What will you do with the free antidote for the SIN Virus?


Click here to listen to our devotions on Spotify be sure to follow us.

Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

Our Verse Mapping download is FREE and includes 6 pages: 3 pages of instructions for using the template and the 2 page template, plus the cover page. If you’re looking to go deeper into God’s Word, learn more about God and develop a stronger spiritual life, Verse Mapping will help you dig into the scriptures. As you apply God’s Word to your life, you will develop a more intimate knowledge and relationship with God.


Week 31: August 1-7


Visit our three retail experiences:

Bible study and Self Care Resources
Christian Tees, Bags, Mugs & More
We are an affiliate of CBD. We earn a commission on any purchase you make when you enter the store through this link. However, your CBD price is the same. Visit CBD for Bibles, Bible studies, gifts & more

Romans 8:37 – Kneels Before God

Romans 8:37 says, “No, in all these things we are more than victorious through Him who loved us.” Our victories come when we are on our knees praying.

True Story

Scatter Kindness

Ephesians 4:32 says, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.” Kindness never goes out of style. Scatter some wherever you go.

Visit our YouTube Channels for Christian playlists and our short animated devotionals.

Animated Devotionals

Contemporary Christian Music Playlist

Southern Gospel Playlist

Just Hymns


God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars

by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on
  • Conversation Starters
    • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
    • Romance Builders
    • Relationship Builders
    • Personal reflections
    • Date ideas
    • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples

Now in the WCM Store! Buy your copy today for only $24.95

paperback edition

Also available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

Westbow logo
Christian book logo
amazon logo
Barnes and Nobel logo
walmart logo


 Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.


Bible Studies, Bibles, Books & More

Christianbook Distributors logo
Everything Christian for less!

Looking for a Bible Study, Bible, book or Christian gift? We are an affiliate with Christianbook Distributors and receive an 8% commission on any item purchased through one of our links. However, the commission never increases your cost of any item. View some of our favorite items by clicking on the logo and thank you for supporting our ministry.

Christianbook Distributors Search:
Christianbook.com

Wellspring Christian Ministries receives an 8% commission on any purchased made from Christian Book Distributors through any affiliate link on this site. Your price for any item is the same as purchasing from CBD directly.


See our other recent posts:

904.239.8937
A non-profit ministry located in Jacksonville, FL 
Follow us on:

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Getting Ready to meet the Groom

by Julia M. Bruce, MSPC, Mental Health Coach,
Keynote Speaker, CEO, Wellspring Christian Ministrie
s

A Bride Prepared

In the last few months, several people I know have had weddings: A staff, a former co-worker, and two nephews. As I read this verse about the wife making herself ready, I thought about all the months of planning the brides did to create their very special, magical moments for their wedding day. The bride chooses a dress, venue, flowers, cake, and caters. She chooses her maid of honor and bridesmaids. She chooses the music for the wedding service and the reception.

On the day of her wedding she sits for hours to get her hair done, carefully puts on her make up or hires someone to do it for this special day. She puts on her dress and veil. Slips on her shoes.  She takes the arm of her father or maybe an older brother or someone who has been a father-figure in her life and starts down the aisle towards her waiting groom to join her life with his.

No bride expecting a full traditional style wedding shows up without any preparations.

The Groom and the Bride

Throughout the Bible, Jesus is often referred to as the groom with His church being his bride. From the moment that Jesus ascended into heaven until the moment he returns for His bride, He has been making preparations to receive His bride. In John 14:2, as Jesus was assuring His disciples and telling them that He would be leaving them to return to His father he said, “I go to prepare a place for you.” He’s getting ready for His bride.

However, most brides and grooms choose a date and time for their wedding. But we, the Church and Bride of Christ, do not know when Jesus will come again. In fact, Jesus does not even know himself. He sits on the edge of his throne waiting for His Father to say, “Now is the time. Go get your Bride.” When that moments comes, what is commonly called the Rapture, the Bride of Christ – all Christians both dead and alive – will be gone from earth in a moment, in a twinkling of an eye (1 Corinthians 15:52). In that extremely brief period of time, we will be changed from earthly bodies to glorified bodies. Since we do not know the date or time of our Groom’s arrival, we should be constantly ready for Him.

The Groom never promised an easy life for His Bride

Persecution and tribulation

While planning for a wedding can be exciting, it is also busy and stressful. As the bride of Christ prepares for her groom, it’s important to remember that Jesus never promised an easy life. In fact, Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:12, “Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” Jesus said in John 16:33, “In the world you will have tribulation.”

Chastisement

We can also expect times of chastisement (Hebrews 12:5-11). As Christians, God is our Heavenly Father and because of his great love for us, he will bring chastisement when we stray away from Him – not out of anger, but to bring us back to Him and restore us to fellowship with Him.

Wars, famines, pestilence and earthquakes

Jesus told us in Matthew 24:6-7, “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.” And in Luke 21:11, Jesus said, “And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.”

Grief beyond comprehension

And sometimes, things happen in this world that we simply cannot understand. I remember the morning my sweet sister-in-law called us to say that our niece’s two-month old son died in his sleep. Our tiny nephew was born 5 weeks premature and he was a fighter. He spent 12 days in the hospital before coming home. But he was doing great. All was well. And then He slipped away – into the arms of Jesus. They buried his tiny body in a tiny casket and still grieve his loss today.

There is no way to understand such a loss. We live in a broken world. When God created the world, it was perfect. But with the sin of Adam and Eve, God’s perfect world became broken and sinful. As a result, death arrived on the scene. But the loss of one so tiny and young is beyond our comprehension.

The minister that spoke at Baby Ben’s funeral shared two scriptures: the first was Deuteronomy 29:29 where Moses said that the secret things belong to the Lord. We can’t understand why some things happen, but we must trust these things to God. The other scripture the minister shared was about the death of David and Bathsheba’s infant son. David said in 2 Samuel 12:23, “I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.” Baby Ben’s family continues to greatly miss him, weep for him, and mourn his loss. We will not see him in this life again, but we know that at the appointed time we will go to him and be with him in eternity. Losing Baby Ben is not a “Goodbye”…it’s “I’ll see you later.”

Our Hope is in the Groom

We all know that life here on earth is not easy. But we have hope and peace when we place our faith in Jesus, believing in His free gift of eternal life. Every single one of us will experience death, unless we experience the rapture. But for the Bride of Christ, death is just the door that takes us to the Groom, the Lamb of God, our Redeemer and Savior.

We can know, without any doubt, that we will see Baby Ben later because of Christ’s sacrificial death and resurrection that paid the price for our sins so that Jesus could offer us the free gift of eternal life. If we accept that gift by faith, then we become the bride of Christ and He is getting ready to bring His bride home.

Jesus told us in John 14:1-7, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.  In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.”

Our groom is getting ready and He is preparing a place for us!

Preparing for the marriage of the Lamb

What are we, the bride of Christ, doing to prepare for the marriage of the Lamb? Are we prepared to take our place beside Him? Have we yielded and surrendered to God so that we are ready when it is time? Are we walking by faith, obediently living for Him? Are we telling others about Him so that we bring them with us to the marriage feast? And are we daily reading His Word and developing a relationship with Him? We don’t often hear of arranged marriages anymore. Could you imagine marrying someone that you met once at the altar of a church but never saw again? We get to know the groom as we study God’s Word, attend church, worship with other believers, and through prayer. How well do you know the groom?

What are you doing to prepare for the marriage of the Lamb? The groom is coming!

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Tee of the Week: Giants

From the song, “Confidence” by Sanctus Reel. As we start a new year, what giants are you facing? What big thing is God asking you to do? Do you need faith like Daniel in the lion’s den? Hope like Moses in the wilderness? A heart like David? Do you need God to be your defense? If you have giants, you can face them with confidence because God is God of the impossibles.

Giants

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