Devotionals by Stuart, Jill & Pete Briscoe

Praise the LORD, I tell myself, and never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He ransoms me from death and surrounds me with love and tender mercies. - Psalm 103:2-4

Genuine appreciation is enthusiastic—it eagerly enrolls others in joyful acknowledgement and celebration. David is a good example. He said, “The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything” (103:19). David found this so encouraging and such a reason for rejoicing that he took delight in praise and exhorted the whole created order to recognize and rejoice that God is firmly on the throne.

The only problem with visions of God, high and lifted up on his throne, is that he can appear to be remote and inaccessible, removed from us and unmoved by the vicissitudes of life that we endure. But nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, the wonder of the divine-human relationship is that the transcendent Lord is immanent (close by). He who rules the heavens and the earth is neither unaware of nor unconcerned about the intimate details of our lives.

So tender are God’s thoughts toward us that he continually bears in mind that we are frail, fallen, and finite. “The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. For he understands how weak we are; he knows we are only dust” (103:13-14). God is painfully aware of our limitations. He knows all about our sinful disposition, and he recognizes how tenuous our hold on life is. So he deals with us accordingly—both firmly and tenderly.

This does not mean that God overlooks our failings or excuses our sin. On the contrary, he holds us responsible, but he makes a way for us to be forgiven through the gracious work of Christ on the cross. In fact, “He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases” (103:3). We should remember that our sins will finally be forgiven, our diseases will finally be healed, and we will be finally ransomed from death when we are finally with him in heaven. All this is because of Christ. In the meantime, we can say with David, “He fills my life with good things” (103:5)—and we can be grateful.

We need to keep telling ourselves of God’s tender mercies because we have an ingrained tendency to forget. We must take steps to “never forget the good things he does” for us (103:2). As we consider these things, each of us, whatever his frame of mind, should stop and say, “As for me—I, too, will praise the Lord” (103:22). Recollecting God’s tender mercies makes for warm hearts, and warm hearts warm up other hearts to “praise his holy name” (103:1).

For Further Study: Psalm 103  

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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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