Devotionals by Dr. Stephen Davey

“Memento Mori”

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. 
Since the island nation of Japan is vulnerable to tsunamis, it has developed one of the most sophisticated warning systems in the world.  When a tsunami was approaching the city of Sendai, warning signals were triggered but the citizens who heard it had only fifteen minutes to respond.
I watched surreal footage taken from a helicopter as that towering wave swept toward many unsuspecting villagers who hadn’t heard the warning. The coverage showed people in cars and on motorcycles riding casually down the road, having no clue that in a matter of moments they would be swept away by a massive wall of water and debris.
Most life-threatening accidents or natural disasters come without warning. And all it takes is one financial hit, one tornado, one illness, and life can change forever.
Go to a cemetery and read the dates on tombstones.  While you’re there, consider the fact that the people buried there never planned to die on the date written on their marker.
Go to the nearest hospital and walk through the emergency room. Do you think any of those people woke up expecting their day to include a trip to the ER . . . perhaps as they or a loved one battled for their very life?
James wants us to remember that since every second is a gift from God and we don’t know how many more He’ll give us, we must make the most of every moment. He compares our lives to steam surging upward from a kettle on a stove—it appears for a little while and then vanishes away. He doesn’t beat around the bush. His words are full of realism and urgency, challenging us to see the aerial view of our lives—see how short they really are.
An article in USA Today told of an undefeated high school basketball team that was playing its last regular-season game. The team’s star player was 6’ 2” and 215 pounds.
The game was tied in overtime and the clock was running down. The star was given the ball with only seconds left to play. Hundreds of excited fans watched as he dribbled down the court and popped a jump shot right before the buzzer sounded. It was right on target . . . nothing but net.
His teammates immediately lifted him onto their shoulders and carried him around the gym as the crowd cheered enthusiastically.  Seconds later, he toppled from their shoulders as he went limp, then died of cardiac arrest.
It doesn’t matter how young or old, healthy or sick you are right now. No one escapes death . . . and no one knows exactly when the tidal wave will sweep over our heads.
Businessmen during James’ day often wrote the Latin motto Memento mori on the front page of their accounting books. The words meant “Remember your mortality.” They wrote those words to remind themselves that life was not just about commerce and the business of the day.
In the spectrum of eternity, we have but a few moments to live. We only have one lifetime to offer our Lord Jesus Christ.
While growing up, my father often said, “If you had ten lives, you might choose to waste one of them.  But since you only have one, you can’t afford to throw it away. And James would add one simple, inspired word . . . Amen!
Prayer Point: Pray with the Psalmist, Lord, teach me to number my days that I may present to You a heart of wisdom (Psalm 90:12). Then recommit the time you have left to God.  
Extra Refreshment: Read these passages that remind us of the brevity of our lives and God’s providential care for us: Job 13–14; Psalm 90; Isaiah 40.

I Pledge Allegiance

As citizens of two kingdoms, Christians face the unique challenge of determining where their allegiance should lie. Do believers pledge allegiance to one nation or to one God above all nations? The Church finds itself in a similar crisis: Is its mission to reform politics or to redeem people?

In this exposition of Romans 13:1-7, Stephen clarifies the believer’s responsibility as a dual citizen of heaven and earth. He also examines the difficult relationship between Church and State, encouraging the Church to focus more on saving Americans than saving America.

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About Wisdom for the Heart

Wisdom for the Heart is an international Bible-teaching ministry based on the sermons of Dr. Stephen Davey. The broadcast Wisdom for the Heart is heard on more than 300 radio stations throughout the United States, as well as transmitted to the Middle East (Arabic), Europe (English), Latin America (Spanish), and Africa (Swahili).


About Dr. Stephen Davey

Stephen Davey is the son of missionary parents and was raised to love Christ, His Church, and His Word. In his last year of high school, Stephen committed his life to serving Christ and prepared for a life of servant-leadership at Liberty University, Tennessee Temple University, Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary, and Dallas Theological Seminary.

Following graduation from Dallas Seminary in 1986, Stephen and Marsha trusted Christ for His provision and moved with their infant twin sons to Cary, NC, to plant Colonial Baptist Church. From the beginning, Stephen preached verse-by-verse, while Marsha created the nursery and children’s programs. In those early days, word of this new church’s commitment to Bible exposition spread rapidly around town, and the fellowship was soon overflowing with attendees.

After worshipping in a school for six years, Colonial moved into its first building, located on seven acres. Within a year, the church not only outgrew its first building but the entire master plan. Nine years later Colonial moved to its present location on forty acres, where several buildings have been designed to maximize outreach, discipleship, community, and worship. The church family currently engages in more than 100 ministries carried out by several thousand volunteers and led by an excellent, Christ-honoring administrative support team and pastoral staff. Their united global vision remains front and center as the Word of God continues to be expounded — and applied.

Stephen also serves as the president of Shepherds Theological Seminary, a young and exciting seminary which has already earned accreditation with TRACS and associate membership status with ATS. With an outstanding faculty and growing student body, Shepherds currently meets on the beautiful campus of Colonial. Stephen enjoys interacting with the students, as well as teaching Pastoral Theology and Creative Bible Teaching.

As the Bible teacher of Wisdom for the Heart, Stephen takes the message of the Gospel around the world. Spanish programming is currently broadcast on 90 radio stations and can be heard throughout Central and South America, reaching an estimated 70 million people. The people have responded hungrily to the teaching of God’s Word.

The Arabic translations are being aired on stations located throughout the Middle East, covering much of Iraq, Kurdistan, Jerusalem, Jordan, and Palestine, reaching an estimated 10 million listeners daily in their own language. In the Middle East, there are 300 million Muslims who need to hear the Gospel.

Swahili is now reaching a potential African audience of more than 50 million listeners. Like the Arab world, spiritual darkness encompasses daily life. Most of the 180 million who use Swahili daily are Muslim; life is governed by Islamic tradition and the teachings of the Koran.

Print and audio resources are available in book and transcript form, CDs, MP3s, and podcasts. Everything Stephen has preached throughout his ministry is now available at no charge in transcript and audio formats at We are praising God for the things He has done—and the things He is doing!

Stephen and Marsha have been married 31 years and have been blessed with twin sons Benjamin [wife Caroline], and Seth; daughters Candace and Charity.

Contact Wisdom for the Heart with Dr. Stephen Davey

Mailing Address
Wisdom for the Heart
PO Box 5729
Cary, NC 27512
Toll-free Phone