Devotionals

This short series of devotionals is more than a glimpse into who God is. It is also a window into how knowing certain aspects of His character can change the lives of people who love Him.

Welcome to 78:4 Season 1!

Season 1 is more or less a journey. In our first episodes, we center on how our relationship with God influences the ways we perceive ourselves, the ways we perceive Him, and how that affects the ways we live with Him. Next, we look at ways to grow in our relationship with the Lord. And finally, we look at some of the actions that flow from our growing relationship with Him.

Psalm 78 tells what happened to one of the tribes of Israel when they'd forgotten all that God had done for them. But in verse 4 the author, who has learned from their mistakes, emphatically says, "We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord, about his power and his mighty wonders." Well, that's what this podcast is all about. Listen to Matt and Bob as they describe what you'll hear this season. 

 


To many, freedom means being able to do whatever you want. To others, it means not having to bow down to some external oppression or slavery. But true freedom goes much deeper than that. That’s why some prisoners are free even though they’re behind bars, while many people who are technically free are walking about in prisons of their own making. As Thoreau said, they’re leading “lives of quiet desperation.” In today’s episode, we’ll talk to three people who have unique takes on what it means to be truly and completely free.

Ward Coleman and Butyrka Prison   3:16 – 5:46

Tyrone Thompkins “Will we ever be slaves again?”   6:39 – 9:47

Kathleen Dooley “Forgiving freed me”  10:34 – 13:52

 

What It Means to Live Free

“To experience the freedom that is in front of me, I need a reminder.”

 

Ninth-Story Blues

 “God freed me from my guilt.”

 

The Source of a Changed Life

 “I wanted to be one of the freest people in the whole world.”

 

View from a Butyrka Prison window.

Photos by Joel Dasalla

 

Ward Coleman (right) meets Victor, who is in his prison cell. 

 

Victor's crucifix made from chewed up bread. He used coffee, ink, vegetables, and medicines to color it. 

 


Merriam-Webster lists 17 definitions for the word "broken"; among them are "shattered," "not working properly," and "violated by transgression." A piece of pottery broken beyond repair is thrown away. But what about people? What happens when we're broken beyond repair? Does God throw us away when we're broken, or can He fix us? In today's episode, we'll hear from three deeply broken people who were not only repaired but transformed.

Darryl Smith “Against All Hope”  2:12 – 8:36

Elizabeth Schenkel “Addicted: The God Drug"  9:59 – 15:50

Dr. Harvey Elder  17:18 – 25:00

 

But Christians Aren’t Supposed To Be Broken

“Accepting my brokenness turned myself and my sin into a gloriously tiny trickle, and it turned His cross and His grace into the magnificent ocean in which I was now near-drowning with grateful glee.”

 

4 Things To Remember When You’re Discouraged

 “We will always be flawed as human beings, but it's when we begin to think we can handle things on our own that we start to fail.

 

The Forgiveness God Offers

 “Do you sometimes find it difficult to believe that you have total forgiveness of your sins in Jesus Christ?”

 

Worthless pottery, cracked and broken

 

made useful and beautiful by the potter.

 

Kintsugi



Does God care? He has an entire universe to take care of, wars and famines to deal with; does He even have time to care that you have a flat tire and are going to be late for a job interview? Or that you don't know what to do about a big decision and you need advice? Or that someone you love has cancer? The world laughs at you for thinking He does care, but God has something else to say about that. Today, we'll hear from three people who have experienced God's love and care on deeply personal levels.

Josh McDowell “Father, Is My Mom In Heaven?”  1:46 – 5:12

Leonard Mahoe “Dora’s Disney Prayer”  7:10 – 10:14

Roxanne Hershey “Does God Even Care?”  13:08 – 17:09

 

When God Seems Silent

“As Christians, we are not always going to hear God's voice, but from Job we can learn a few practical things to do when God seems silent.”

 

Does God Care Who Wins?

 “But God most certainly does care who wins—just not at all in the same way we do and certainly not in the way implied by most post-game interviews.”

 

Gay, Lesbian, God’s Love

 “But God is able to love you perfectly. He loves us because it is his nature to love, and it never changes, never stops.”

 


We’ve all heard the calls to give God your best, but what if you don’t have a best? What if the best you have to give to God is your brokenness? Is there still a place for me in His kingdom? In today's episode we'll hear from three people who found out that God delights in working through us no matter what condition we're in.

Josh McDowell “Can God Really Use Me?”  1:45 – 6:35

Jane Cook “Redeeming what was Lost”  8:15 – 12:31

Roger Randall “But I’m Just a Kid”  13:59 – 20:14

 

Tiffany Found Pure Joy

“I am not perfect. I never will be, and that’s okay because God IS.”

 

Jesus Gives Power For Living

 “Therefore, it is no longer what we do through our own self-effort, but what He does supernaturally, because He is the one who provides the power, and we are merely the instruments through which He releases that power.”

 

Be A Mirror

 “And as we are transformed, we will light up the world around us.”

 

Josh’s Bio

 

Ways to serve

If you're looking for ways to serve, this site has loads of information on mission trips, internships, and career opportunities.

 

 


Miracles don't happen anymore. Or do they? Today we'll hear from three people who have seen God move in ways that are nothing short of miraculous.

Andre Kole “A Holy Hush”    3:13 – 8:15

George Ninan “A Circle of Light”   13:15 – 15:21

Elizabeth Schenkel “Back from the Dead”   16:29 – 21:52

 

The Magicians 5 Miracles

“Every one of these wonders was absolutely impossible in the eyes of man and yet I am convinced more than ever that God wants us to be obedient and completely dependent on Him and He will demonstrate his power in signs and wonders that bring us and others closer to Him.”

 

The Miracles of Jesus

“The miracles of the Bible go beyond anything that any magician or illusionist could ever perform, but greater than any physical miracle was the ability of a man named Jesus to bring purpose and meaning to the lives of millions of people throughout the centuries.”

 

Miracles Along the Road

“Waving machetes, they screamed, ‘We are going to kill you and every infidel with you!’

 

Andre Kole

JESUS Film

 



If we're honest, we're all afraid of something. For some, it's monsters under the bed and things that go bump in the night. Most of us, though, are fearful of things like failure, of not being able to pay your bills or the death of someone you love. The Bible tells us over and over again not to be afraid, but how do we do that? Today, we'll hear from a crime victim, a battle-tested soldier, and a missionary who all had to learn the secret of courage.

Joanne Austin “I’m Tired of Being Afraid”   02:30 - 9:26

Jeff Struecker “Fear and Courage”   11:29 - 15:55

Jane Cook “Breaking Fear Barriers”   16:51 - 21:11

 

No More Fears

"No fear is too small for Christ to handle, and certainly, none is too large."

 

When the World Feels Unsafe

"But God meets us in our fears and promises to usher believers on to a tear-free eternity."

 

4 Practical Things to do Instead of Worrying

"Worrying less starts with knowing who God is."

 

 


Jesus said he came to give us abundant life, a life to its fullest, better than anything we could ever dream. But is that true of your life? Let's face it; living the Christian life isn't hard. It's impossible. And that's no fun. Our mistake comes when we try to do it on our own. God never intended us to live our lives alone. That's why He gave us His Holy Spirit to guide us, comfort us, correct us, and empower us. 

In today's episode, we'll take a look at Spiritual-breathing, the first essential step in living an abundant life.

Vonette Bright "The Spirit-filled Life"   4:19 – 9:18

Rick Schell "The Secret of Sin"   11:53 – 20:56

Bailey Marks "The Spirit breathes when the body is weak"   23:30 – 25:40

 

The Spirit Filled Life Resource Kit

Matt and I can't recommend this highly enough. It has loads of materials to help you dig deeper into who the Holy Spirit is and how He works in your life. 

 

Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life?

"Every day can be an exciting adventure for the Christian who knows the reality of being filled with the Holy Spirit and who lives constantly, moment by moment, under His gracious direction."

*This is the resource Vonette talked about

 


How is it some people seem to have incredible lives of joy and purpose, and God is using them in powerful ways, while other Christians seem to be slouching toward eternal mediocrity? The answer is found in the Holy Spirit. Today, we'll take a look at walking in the Spirit, the key to the dynamic Christian life. 

Mark Gauthier “The Sweet Spot of Surrender”   1:52 – 5:43

Marf Meister “Paralyzed and Pregnant”   9:01 – 10:50

Dick Purnell “Speaking with the Lord”   12:16 – 20:56

 

The Spirit Filled Life Resource Kit

Matt and I can't recommend this highly enough. It has loads of materials to help you dig deeper into who the Holy Spirit is and how He works in your life. 

 

Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life?

"Every day can be an exciting adventure for the Christian who knows the reality of being filled with the Holy Spirit and who lives constantly, moment by moment, under His gracious direction."

*This is the resource Vonette talked about

 


Sharing your faith - evangelism - can be intimidating. But it also brings incredible joy. God has called us to do it, but how do we? In today's episode, we hear from three people who learned the secret of telling others about God's love and forgiveness.

Thomas Abraham "A huge Man in a Green Bikini"   5:01 – 9:58

Gladys Hillman "Way of Life Evangelism"   11:26 – 19:08

Paul Eshleman "Get Off the Fence"   20:58 – 28:49

 

Share the Gospel

This page is loaded with all kinds of resources, including "Evangelism Tools," links to apps, and articles on everything from strategies to "Preparing Your Personal Testimony" to how to handle difficult questions. 

 

JESUS Film Project: Tools and Strategies

Strategies, apps, and tools, including the JESUS Film in more than one thousand languages, and a variety of short films to equip you to reach people.

 

Legacy on YouTube: Sharing Your Faith

These are videos we've produced to show you how other people handle sharing their faith. These were all edited by Matt. 

 

 


This whole planet needs help. We all know it, but what can one person do?  In today's episode, we'll listen to three people who did what they could to change the world around them. And as a result, the whole world is a better place because of they did. 

Jim Wunder "We Angelic Monsters"   3:30 – 9:34

Cathy Douglass "Love Thy Neighbor"   11:32 – 16:38

Mike Christian "Put a Body to Christ"   19:54 – 23:51

 

Unto

Relieve suffering. Restore dignity. Reveal hope. 

 

Help Others Grow

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." 

 

Legacy: Community Outreach

Watch stories of how different people have worked to reach their community. 

 

Making Your Life Count

This site offers you simple, practical and powerful ways to help you make your life count.

 

 

 


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