All Christian disciples have one thing in common: as they carry the gospel across the ocean and across the street, difficulties and persecution will become the norm for those who choose to follow Jesus. How believers respond both in the face of persecution and when God asks the seemingly impossible of us reveals everything about their level of faith and obedience.
Some of Jesus’ instructions sound uncomfortable and are potentially dangerous. We may be initially encouraged by His declaration, “I am sending you out.” But how are we to respond when He then tells us that He is sending us out “like sheep among wolves"? And what do we do when He asks us to deny ourselves and take up a cross to follow Him? How can we embrace casual faith in light of the radical commands of Jesus which are anything but casual? Even when God asks us to do something that seems insane to us, we are to step out in full-fledged obedience, relying on and trusting Him.
The adult Bible Reading Plan is listed in detail below. To read the daily passage, simply click on the Bible reference.
For a printed version of the adult plans, click this link: Insanity of Obedience
For the Preschool & Children's Bible Reading Plan, click here.
Adult Bible Reading Plan
A strong personal faith and trust in God is needed in order to be a blessing to others. Whenever God allows our faith to be tested, we can trust that it is for a good purpose. Trials and tests reveal our obedience to God and the genuineness of our faith and trust in him. Develop your faith and trust in God through personal spiritual practices
Day 1 Genesis 22:1-19; Hebrews 11:19
Reflect: Where do you see the depth of Abraham’s faith and trust in God in this story?
Apply: How easy is it for you to obey God, especially when it doesn’t make sense?
What do you need to sacrifice in your own life to follow God more closely?
Pray: Lord, is there any area of my life where I am not obeying You? Help me to
live in obedience to Your ways.
Day 2 Judges 7:1-15
Reflect: How did God test Gideon’s and his men’s faith? Why?
Apply: How has God demonstrated His trustworthiness to you personally?
Pray: Lord, I praise You that when I am feeling outnumbered or need immediate
intervention, I can trust in You.
Day 3 James 1:2-4
Reflect: What is the outcome of facing trials and tests? How should we face them?
Apply: In what ways can you mature and increase your faith and trust in God?
Pray: Father, help me to stand strong in faith, knowing that You do great works
in the midst of trials.
Day 4 2 Peter 1:5-11
Reflect: Why is it important that we make efforts to continue to grow in our faith?
Apply: How have you stumbled in faith? What godly traits do you need to develop?
Pray: Lord, give me an added measure of faith today and the power to live Your way.
Day 5 Galatians 5:22-25
Reflect: What has to happen in order to develop the fruit of the Spirit? (refer to v. 24)
Apply: With which characteristics of the Christian life do you struggle most?
Pray: Jesus, I ask that the fruit of Your Spirit will grow in me so that Your love flows
out of me and into the lives of others.
God uses persecution and suffering for His purposes. Faithfulness today, as in the Bible, requires spiritual discernment and psychological strength in the midst of suffering. Pray for confidence in the face of adversity as you are being obedient in the mission to make God known to all nations.
Day 1 Acts 16:20-34
Reflect: What is unique about Paul and Silas’ interaction with the
prisoners and with the jailor? Why is this story a key to
Apply: What does this teach about our own witnessing to others?
Pray: Lord, thank You that my suffering is an opportunity to share
the gospel with others. Help me to focus on You.
Day 2 Daniel 3:1-28
Reflect: How did the three men respond to the questions the king asked
them? What is noteworthy to you about their response?
Apply: How do you relate to the story of the fiery furnace, even if it is a
completely different circumstance?
Pray: Lord, where do I need to take a stand because of my faith?
Help me to trust You.
Day 3 John 15:18-21
Reflect: Of what does Jesus remind the disciples in this passage?
Apply: How and why does the world treat people differently depending
on their faith?
Pray: Lord, I pray for faithful obedience to Your Word and help in not conforming to social pressures. Keep me focused on sharing You with others.
Day 4 Isaiah 43:1-2
Reflect: Though God does not always save His people from physical harm, what hope does the promise in Isaiah give you?
Apply: When have you felt the presence of the Lordwith you in trials?
Pray: Lord, I praise You that I can live with confidence even in the
midst of trials because of Your presence and faithfulness.
Day 5 Romans 12:1-2
Reflect: How do these verses speak to the realities of adversity as a Christian? How do these verses reassure Christians?
Apply: What are some areas in your life that are not acts of worship? In what ways are you seeking to know God’s will?
Pray: Help me to live each day as an act of worship in obedience to
Your good and perfect will.
Giving helps us to become what God wants us to be. God uses our giving to change the world for His purposes, and God uses our giving to change us spiritually. While giving is not always easy, we should be obedient and determined to use all God has given us to advance His kingdom.
Day 1 2 Corinthians 8:1-7
Reflect: What was the condition of the Macedonian churches and what did
they do in the midst of it?
Apply: How have you excelled in the grace of giving? What things hold you
back from giving?
Pray: Father, forgive me for the times when I hold back from giving. I pray
for a giving, generous and grateful heart.
Day 2 2 Corinthians 9:1-15
Reflect: What happened as a result of the generosity of the people in Achaia? What should be our attitude towards giving?
Apply: When has God prompted you to give even when it didn’t make sense? How has sacrificial giving impacted you?
Pray:Lord, help me to show my love for You by sacrificially sharing with
others with a cheerful and gracious spirit.
Day 3 Acts 4:32-37
Reflect:What resulted from the unity and the sharing of possessions?
Apply: What ideas do you have regarding sharing of resources that could impact our church?
Pray: God, with thankful hearts toward You, give us a tender compassion to share with those around us who are hurting or in need.
Day 4 Acts 20:32–35
Reflect: What example did Paul set for the people to follow? Why?
Apply: When have you experienced the blessing that comes from giving? From receiving?
Pray: Father, if needed, change my attitude towards giving. I know that
all things come from You, and it is from the abundance You have
graciously given me that I am giving back to You.
Day 5 1 Timothy 6:17-19
Reflect: In what should we place our hope and why? What is the promise
for a generous lifestyle?
Apply: What would it take for you to give more than you think you can give?
Pray: Help me to walk by faith, not swayed by my mountainous problems, but trusting You as my Supplier and Supply.
No matter where you are, how old you are, or what you are doing, God is at work and has a plan to use you in that work. He calls us first to be in a relationship with Him, and then He sends us out to bless others. The challenge isn’t merely to go, but to model obedient and sacrificial faith among people who need to be blessed by hearing the gospel.
Day 1 Genesis 12:1-5; 17:1-5
Reflect: In what way is this story of the Lord commanding Abraham to
“go” a key in understanding God’s mission?
Apply: How do you relate to the story of Abraham? When have you heard God say go?
Pray:Lord, give me courage to step out in faith and to be a blessing
wherever You choose to use me.
Day 2 Hebrews 11:8-16
Reflect: Though Abraham literally left his home, what does it mean to live
for a better city and for a heavenly home?
Apply: What freedom exists in knowing that this world is temporary?
Pray:Lord, I have strength and peace to endure temporary hardship
because You have promised my eternal home is with You.
Day 3 Jonah 1:1-15
Reflect:Compared to Abraham’s story, what are the similarities and differences to Jonah’s story?
Apply: When have you felt like Jonah? What happened?
Pray: Lord, instead of running away, l want my first response to be running to You.
Day 4 Matthew 28:16-20; Acts 1:1-11
Reflect: What is the role of the Holy Spirit in God’s mission to go to the
nations? Summarize Jesus’ words in Acts 1:7-8.
Apply: In regard to what the angels said at the end of the passage,
in what ways are you standing around instead of going to
Pray: Lord, thank You for the work You have given me to do for
Your kingdom. Give me the strength and abilities to see it
through to completion.
Day 5 Matthew 9:35-38
Reflect: According to Jesus, what group of people are too few in number? Why?
Apply: How can you help in the harvest?
Pray: Holy Spirit, in Your power send me wherever, whenever to
speak to whomever to make disciples for You.
During Jesus’ life, no one really understood His mission. Even His closest friends did not fully grasp the significance of His life and teachings until seeing the big picture in light of His death and resurrection. In the resurrection we all now see the ultimate victory over sin and death; we must remember that crucifixion came before resurrection, and that the resurrection gives us hope and confidence to live victoriously.
Day 1 Acts 9:20-31
Reflect: How did people view Paul after he died to his old way of life?
Apply: What would motivate you to speak boldly in the name of Christ?
Pray:Lord, I pray for confidence and boldness to make known
the name of Jesus .
Day 2 John 3:1-21
Reflect: How did Nicodemus reveal a lack of understanding in vs. 1-15?
How did Jesus promise His victory and ours in vs. 16-21?
Apply: Describe your personal encouragement, conviction or application.
Pray:Lord, thank you that even though I was dead in sin, You died and
gave me new birth into a life of hope. Who needs to hear about
Day 3 John 17:13-26
Reflect:What role does the Word of truth have for remaining faithful to the mission in the world? What victory did Jesus promise for those who believe?
Apply: How does Jesus’ prayer help you fulfill the gospel mission?
Pray: Jesus, make me an answer to Your prayer by extending the influence of God in the world.
Day 4 Romans 8:18, 35-39
Reflect: From where does Paul get his confidence and sense of victory for
his mission of spreading the gospel?
Apply: What overwhelming situations are you or someone close to you
currently facing? How do the words here give you hope?
Pray: Father, thank You for the security You give in Your great love.
Let Your love be the thing that fuels my own love for You through
the challenges of life.
Day 5 1 John 5:1-5
Reflect: What should we be doing as children of God? How do we
overcome the world and live in victory?
Apply: Where are you in your love and commitment to God? Is there a
command from God that you need to step out in faith to obey?
Pray: Lord, I declare You Lord over every area of my life. With love and
faith, help me to say yes to Your direction.
When Jesus sent His disciples out to do ministry in His name, He said it would be as sheep among wolves, and some of the ‘wolves’ would even be family members. He reminded them that following Him was to be their priority, and that they were to acknowledge Him before others no matter the cost. For us today, our mission is the same: to share and model a life in Christ with everyone, starting with our family. Even though at times family is an insanely hard audience, we must persevere in prayer and in action, removing any hindrances that keep faith from moving from one generation to another.
Day 1 Matthew 10:1-39
Reflect: Regarding family, about what was Jesus warning the disciples?
Why was this important for Him to reveal?
Apply: How have you experienced life as a sheep among wolves?
Pray: Lord, in the midst of criticism or hostility, empower me to speak
out boldly, confident in the Holy Spirit.
Day 2 John 1:29-42
Reflect: In what way is this story a key to understanding God’s work in
Apply: Why is it essential to identify Jesus as both the Savior who takes away our sin and the Teacher whom you follow?
Pray: Lord, forgive me when I neglect to love and lead my family in discipleship. Bring salvation and Christ-like love into my home.
Day 3 Deuteronomy 6:4-9
Reflect: How frequently should we seek to make disciples within our own families?
Apply: How has the presence or absence of family discipleship affected your life? How are you doing with impressing the Word on hearts?
Pray: Lord, work in and through my family to grow as disciples and to pass on our faith to succeeding generations.
Day 4 Mark 3:33-35
Reflect: How does Jesus identify His family?
Apply: What does this description about family reveal about true faith?
Pray: Father, thank You for adopting me into Your family through Your Son.
Day 5 Psalm 145:1-13
Reflect: What kinds of things are we to pass on to the next generation?
Apply: Reread verses 3-7 and make a list of the kinds of things you can
share with your family so they may know of God’s might acts.
Pray: Lord, may discipleship transform families so that the gospel spreads to each generation.