Devotionals by Stuart, Jill & Pete Briscoe

This is the day the LORD has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it. . . . Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. - Psalm 118:24, 29

When the Green Bay Packers defeated the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl in New Orleans, the streets of the French Quarter were soon filled with joyous fans celebrating the victory. It was striking, therefore, at the end of the game to see Reggie White, the All-Pro defensive end of the Packers, and a number of other players kneeling in the stadium and giving thanks to the Lord. Not everybody appreciated this show of devotion; some people wondered aloud if God would have been thanked if the Packers had lost. But there is a marked contrast between those who celebrate victory with partying and those who celebrate with thanksgiving.

Psalm 118 records the celebration of a military victory. The triumphant leader has brought his troops to the Temple, and the priest calls the people of Israel to give thanks to the Lord (Ps. 118:1-3). Then the leader addresses the people: “In my distress I prayed to the Lord, and the Lord answered me and rescued me” (118:5). As a result of this experience, he exclaims, “It is better to trust the Lord than put confidence in people . . . [or] princes” (118:8-9). The “strong right arm of the Lord,” says the leader of the triumphant army, “has done glorious things . . . [and] is raised in triumph” (118:15-16).

The leader asks permission to enter the Temple (118:19), and as the gates are opened, he says, “those gates lead to the presence of the Lord, and the godly enter there” (118:20). Upon this, the choirs burst into song, praising the Lord for the wonders he has done in snatching the leader from the jaws of defeat and giving him the victory. “This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous to see,” they sing (118:23). This day of celebration “is the day the Lord has made.” So they proclaim, “we will rejoice and be glad in it” (118:24). The victorious leader asks for a blessing from the priests, who respond, “We bless you from the house of the Lord” (118:26). The psalm ends with the leader honoring the Lord by encouraging the people to “give thanks to the Lord” (118:29).

Most men will never win a battle or even play in a Super Bowl, but all men can win smaller victories in life. What they do then speaks volumes about the kind of men they are. If they go out to get drunk, they lack perspective—as well as balance! If they take a knee and thank the Lord, they stand tall.

For Further Study: Psalm 118  

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About Telling the Truth

Telling the Truth exists to make available sound biblical teaching, practically applied, with a view to producing lives that glorify God and draw people to Christ. The whole of our ministry is to encourage, console, strengthen, teach, and train.

About Stuart, Jill & Pete Briscoe

Stuart Briscoe uses wit and intellect to target your heart, capture your attention and challenge you to grow! You will find his logic compelling as he brings a fresh, practical perspective to the Scriptures. Born in England, Stuart left a career in banking to enter the ministry full time. He has written more than 50 books, received three honorary doctorates and preached in more than one hundred countries. He was senior pastor of Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wisconsin, for thirty years, and currently serves as minister-at-large.

Jill Briscoe was born in England and found Christ when she was 18 years old. She never looked back. Upon graduating from Cambridge University, she began working as a teacher by day and had a vigorous street ministry to the youths of Liverpool by night.

She met Stuart at a youth conference and they married in 1958. In the 50 years since, Jill has become a highly sought-after Bible teacher and author who travels around the world ministering to under-resourced churches and speaking at international seminars and conferences. Since 2000, she and Stuart, who was formerly senior pastor of Elmbrook Church for 30 years, have had the joy of equipping and encouraging believers across the globe in their roles as ministers-at-large for Elmbrook.

Jill has authored more than 40 books including devotionals, study guides, poetry and children's books. Her vivid, relational teaching style touches the emotions and stirs the heart. She serves as Executive Editor of Just Between Us, a magazine of encouragement for ministry wives and women in leadership, and served on the board of World Relief and Christianity Today, Inc., for over 20 years.

Jill and Stuart call suburban Milwaukee, Wisconsin their home. When they are not traveling, they spend time with their three children, David, Judy and Peter, and thirteen grandchildren.

Pete Briscoe, youngest son of Stuart and Jill, was also born in England but grew up under his father's ministry in Milwaukee. While getting his Masters of Divinity degree at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, IL, Pete had a professor tell him that it was "a sin to bore people with the Bible." He has taken that to heart as he has served since 1992 as senior pastor of Bent Tree Bible Fellowship in Dallas, TX. Pete and his wife, Libby, have three children.

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