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Bible teachers have a long history of portraying the stories of scripture two-dimensionally — as flat characters moving across small landscapes and making familiar, predictable choices. That's how we often perceive the people who populate God's story. We don't always read their stories with awareness of the pressures they faced, the doubts they had, the assumptions they made, or the alternatives they could have chosen. We miss many of the layers of their lives.
The devotional readings in this Bible explore those layers because we have more in common with these people than we might think. We wander through the wilderness of life too, and we see the challenges around us, just as they did. But with the eyes of faith, they were able to envision something of God and his purposes. They not only survived their deserts; they learned to dance in them. We can too.