Book Review Friday: Streams in the Desert Devotional

I have to admit, my copy of Streams in the Desert holds a lot of weight. Inside the front cover is the first initial and last name of my grandfather, and opposite on the front page is my mother’s name. Knowing their stories, their personal struggles and picturing their searching fingers thumbing through these pages, the book itself takes on more depth. However, I would recommend this devotional even without all these invisible familial fingerprints. I would recommend it for the tired, the weary, the despondent, the inquisitive, but especially the tired, because that is when I received this book from my mother when she came down for a visit over a year ago. This is the book I laid hands on every morning along with my Bible and the words in this book know hurt, they know despondency, and take it up boldly with every other emotion.


This devotional is authored by L.B. (Lettie) Cowman, wife of Rev. Charles B. Cowman, who was the founder of the Oriental Missionary Society. This organization was founded in with the purpose of setting up native ministries in Japan, Korea, China, and Formosa. Rev. and Mrs. Cowman served in Asia from 1901 to 1917 until Rev. Cowman’s failing health forced them to return to their home in California. Lettie Cowman turned her attention to caring for her husband until his death six years later. Out of these experiences, out of her heartbreak, came this book in 1925, which has a companion, Springs in the Valley. During the next twenty-five years, Mrs. Cowman inspired several nationwide Scripture distribution campaigns and wrote seven more books.


The words of L.B. Cowman from the introduction: In the pathway of faith we come to learn that the Lord’s thoughts are not our thoughts, nor His ways our ways. Both in the physical and spiritual realm, great pressure means great power! Although circumstances may bring us into the place of death, that need not spell disaster–for if we trust int he Lord and wait patiently, that simply provides the occasion for the display of His almighty power. “Remember His marvelous works that He has done; His wonders and the judgments of His mouth.” (Psalm 105:5)

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