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Saturday, November 29, 2014

An Attitude of Praise

(Bible Translation and Location: New Living Translations – Psalm 34:1-3)
Thoughts:
We have just celebrated Thanksgiving, a day set aside on our calendars just to give thanks; a holiday given by most employers to enable us to gather together with family and give thanks! However as I read these verses I was reminded that God wants us to know, through His servant David, that we have daily blessings and should therefore be in an attitude of thanksgiving at all times. Now I know that will sound strange to many, because intentionally trying to be in an attitude of praise, even when things may not be going as planned, or desired, is at best very challenging. You know, I once heard that instead of whining and complaining about a broken arm, try thanking God for the other, whole arm that you have. Friends, God is so good to us, yet we find so much to complain about. I am not exempt from this scolding, but oh how I wish that I could have the desire and will-power to always be like David and his teaching in this Psalm. Let us always acknowledge the glory, wisdom, power and love of our God at all times, and let us give thanks always, friends! What a Mighty God we serve!
Prayer:
Lord Jesus, thank You for your love and Your goodness to us! You are so good to us! Please help us to realize and always acknowledge how blessed we are, and to stop whining about things that we don’t really need. We are a sorry bunch, dear Lord, yet because of your awesome hand upon us, we should be so appreciative and so filled with thankfulness and praise at all times. Please continue to mold us into a thankful people, and may Your love shine through us to help others that we come into contact with. I love You Lord, and I lift my voice, to worship You, with all that I am or ever hope to be. I praise You, ask Your forgiveness for my littleness and look forward to lifting up my voice in praise to you on a regular basis, for I ask this in the precious name of Jesus, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Praise God For The Women In Our Lives!


The Holy Bible

28 Her children show their appreciation, and her husband praises her.
29 He says, "Many women are good wives, but you are the best of them all."
30 Charm is deceptive and beauty disappears, but a woman who honors the Lord should be praised.
31 Give her credit for all she does. She deserves the respect of everyone.
(Bible Translation and Location: The Good News Translation – Proverbs 31:28-31)

Thoughts:

If after reading the subject of this devotional, you panic and look at your calendars to make sure that it's not Mother's Day, Then I believe I can confidently say that my whole purpose for sharing this message would have been achieved! As I read this scripture I was reminded of a few things that I wanted to share with you:
  • Whether it is the woman who gave birth to you, or the woman that raised you, or the women in your life that impressed Biblical and moral values upon you, I believe that you will acknowledge that there is an undaunting love there that is very hard to explain, because these ladies loved you when most folk felt you were unlovable. They sacrificed to share with you even when you felt like no one even cared. There is just that motherly attachment that is virtually impossible and/or unlikey to be broken. A love second only to that of Jesus' love for you.
  • For myself, and perhaps many of you, there is also another lady in our lives for which this wise advice applies. For at a point in our lives we found a lady who fell in love with us, yes even mean old us! I can agree with the Proverb quoted in verse 29, that no matter how special and invaluable you may feel your wife is to you, mine is the best of all! Guys, we struggle to express the kind of love that we see expressed through our wives. As I age, I find where I get pretty miserable and challenging to get along with, especially when the heat (stress) is on. Yet, if we avoid abuse to our wife, she is the one that understands our frustration and is quick to respond in helping us overcome that frustration. Because of this quality, I am convinced that our wives help us overcome many obstacles and, because of their undying love for us, they help us to succeed in life. May I encourage you to join me in finding more opportunities to praise our wives for what they do to make us better men? They truly deserve our continued praises!
I realize there are other ladies involved in our lives also (work, church, etc.) but I am convinced that it is because of the two mentioned in my key points that we are what we are today. Therefore, if this Thanksgiving Day has passed by without you giving your mother and/or wife credit, then I would humbly point you to verse 31 and ask you to be obedient to the Word of God!

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, thank You for the mother that You have blessed me with. Always loving, kind, protective and caring to me. May I faithfully endeavor to care for her in return as she ages gracefully? She was patient and caring for me even during my young days when most people would have given up on me. Please help me to also be patient and caring with mom now as she especially needs help from her children. Thank You also for my wonderful wife, dear Lord. Having seen me at my best and, unfortunately, at my worst throughout our 39 years of marriage, and yet to still love and care for me in spite of all that, I am truly thankful to You, and to her for allowing You to grace her with power from above for her earthy ambitions and responsibilities. I am truly a blessed man, thank You Oh God! Now may Your power and Your peace rest with each man that may meditate on this devotional today, and may Your wonderful grace continue upon our mothers and wives, for I ask this in the name of Jesus, my wonderful Lord. AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Our Lives – An Expression of Whose We Are


The Holy Bible

Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not "mine," but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that.
Is it not clear to you that to go back to that old rule-keeping, peer-pleasing religion would be an abandonment of everything personal and free in my relationship with God? I refuse to do that, to repudiate God's grace. If a living relationship with God could come by rule-keeping, then Christ died unnecessarily.

(Bible Translation and Location: The Message – Galatians 2:20-21)

Thoughts:

As in Paul's day, I believe that today we find some Christian leaders who are in the church ministry business for an income, a place to work, prestige, or in some cases just to find an opportunity to use their knowledge from years of Bible College that their parents forced upon them. However, I also believe that we have some Christian leaders who, like Paul, are pastoring or leading various ministries because of a deep, fully committed relationship with the Lord, and obedient to the special call on their life by the Master of this universe. The difference will be obvious to those being served, for one will be speaking and acting from the learned, head knowledge, while the other will be responding to a deep, spiritual, personal relationship with the God that they follow, and serve. One will be committed to pleasing the ones that they serve and receive their paycheck from, while the other will be committed to serving the Lord God Almighty who distinctly called them into the ministry. Now the latter personality, while serving God and faithfully following Him, will also faithfully minister and serve the children of God, as that exemplifies exactly what God demonstrated to them/us. I believe that the difference will be very evident in the pulpit and in personal relationships with the congregation. The eye opener here for you and I, Mr. and Mrs. Layperson, is that individually we fall into one of these same two personalities. Using Paul's analogy, you might say that in one person we might find ourselves committed to rule-keeping, and peer pleasing but without true dedication to the things of the Lord. While another person might be so filled with God that the fruit of the Spirit is being wonderfully and miraculously expressed through us. The big question is: Do others see enough of Jesus in you to convict, or accuse you of being a follower of Jesus Christ, and a faithful servant of His? Are you bearing fruit that family, friends and acquaintances will recognize your source of life?


Prayer:

Lord and Savior, Jesus my Lord. I just want to thank You for not only creating me and placing me on this earth to follow the same evil actions of those that I come into contact with, but instead, You loved me enough to show me through Your Word, and demonstrate for me though Your life while here on earth, the way that is pleasing to the Father. Please continue Your marvelous work in me, and please also speak to the hearts of those that might meditate on this devotional today. May we seek to serve You and You alone, without the need or desire of praise from those around us, for we want serve You oh God. May the people see Jesus in everything we do, say or think so that they may be drawn to You and not repulsed by us. Have Your will and way in the lives of those that claim You as Lord today, is my prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, AMEN!

 
FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Confidence in Troubled Times


The Holy Bible

4 I cry aloud to the Lord,
and He answers me from His holy mountain. Selah
5 I lie down and sleep;
I wake again because the Lord sustains me.

(Bible Translation and Location: Holman Christian Standard Bible – Psalm 3:4-5)

Thoughts:

So often we share stories about things that have occurred in others' lives, but have you ever noticed the difference when someone is telling you an experience from their own life? There's a whole lot more passion, intimacy and convincing truth about what they are telling you from first-hand experience. Psalm 3 is one of these cases, for David was running from the onslaught of his son Absalom who had many warriors chasing his father to murder him. However, instead of the panic that most of us would find ourselves in, David finds peace and rest in the Creator of this universe, the One that David had proven as his God, even though everyone around him was telling him quite the different (see verse 2). Friends, it is virtually impossible to gain confidence in a stranger – someone you are meeting or addressing for the first time. So my first advice to you is to have a personal relationship with the one in whom you run to in times of trouble and despair. If you don't know Jesus intimately, I would suggest that you follow the guidelines in my footnote. Secondly, you will quickly forget a person you've met if you don't keep open communication with that person. Communication with God is through His Son, Jesus, and is possible through prayer, Bible study, praise and worship, fellowship with other saints, and acknowledging His presence and character in all things created. Through regular communion with God, You will quickly recognize His answers to your prayer requests, and you will learn to acknowledge His works rather than luck, chance or nature itself. In building this type of confidence, you too will be able to rest in God's presence, know that He is God, and that He will work all things out for good, to those who place their faith and trust in Him.


Prayer:

Lord Jesus, You alone are God, why then should we fear? I believe that for your saints, You have our very best interest at heart. Therefore may I ask that You humble me each day into accepting this truth and Your ultimate love for me. Help me to remember that my ways are not Your ways, so there will be times that You will direct my path in ways that I may never have even thought of, or asked for. Please help me to be more like David and to rest in the peace that You are God and I am not. That You will work things out for good and in ways that would bless me and not harm me. Life seems so challenging even to Christians who have a Father to rest their faith in. I struggle to imagine the enormous stress of my friends that try to do life all by themselves and without the advantage of having You, oh God, to lead them, protect them, comfort them and love them unconditionally. Please humble my family members that don't yet know You so that they may refocus their lives towards You. Please speak gently to my friends who can't see beyond their struggles to see a God who loves them beyond all measure. Having the confidence in the King of all kings, and the Master of this universe is more than we deserve, but all that we need oh God. Thank You for being my God! I praise You and ask all of these things in the wonderful and matchless name of Your Son, Jesus. AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Missed Opportunities


The Holy Bible

As for those who were considered important in the church, their reputation doesn't concern me. God isn't impressed with mere appearances, and neither am I. And of course these leaders were able to add nothing to the message I had been preaching. It was soon evident that God had entrusted me with the same message to the non-Jews as Peter had been preaching to the Jews.
(Bible Translation and Location: The Message – Galatians 2:6-8)

Thoughts:

The small statement that I bolded is also translated "God has no favorites" (NLT) or "God does not judge by outward appearances" (GNT). However, how often do we snub our noses at that person who is trying to minister to us, because they're not dressed the way that we picture a pastor, or worse still, how often do we miss ministry opportunities because we just can't be seen associating with a known drinker, or just a sinner in general – you know the kind of folk that Jesus died for? What do we find to say to Jesus when He questions us on our actions? How do we feel when we hear about that same person dying without anyone else ever having the opportunity to share the gospel with them? Missed opportunities sting a lot friends. Most of us have such a fear about sharing with others, because we feel inadequate. First of all, we are inadequate, as we should never attempt witnessing without giving God the lead. Please don't make it a 'me' thing! Secondly, fearing what others may think or say was actually covered in my reading in the Proverbs this morning: "It is dangerous to be concerned with what others think of you, but if you trust the Lord, you are safe." (GNT - Proverbs 29:25). Let's be careful to give God praise for all His mercies, and let's stop focusing attention on ourselves. God, in His infinite mercy saved us, and it is He that could use us to minister to others, but we must be available to Him. Let's use this week of Thanksgiving celebrations to truly open ourselves up to God, so that He might bless our family gatherings and each member present, in spite of what we know them to be away from the family! God so loved the world that He gave His only Son so that ALL might come to know Him! Let's let Him do His thing in and through us this Thanksgiving holiday time!


Prayer:

Father, I am thankful for all that You have done for me, especially the sacrifice You made for me at Calvary, and I am also thankful for Your watchful, protective hand over me each and every day that I live. Please help me to not allow those blessings to just channel up inside, but to openly share with those in need. Those who see no hope for their future. Those who have no hope because they don't even know You. Thank You for sending Paul to minister to so many in his day, and that his written words, under Your inspiration, can continue ministering to us today. Paul encountered challenges, but he quickly allowed You control of his situations. Lord, may we also surrender ourselves to You so that Your perfect will might be accomplished, and not just our selfish desires. My greatest desire is that all my family, friends and acquaintances will come to know You and live for You, so that we may one day all celebrate around Your throne in glory! I realize that You are all powerful and can touch the lives of each of these, but please empower me to do my part and to be obedient to Your voice and Your instructions, regardless of my impressions of the person. You are all powerful dear God, and I'm not, so I humbly ask that You answer my prayer today, for it's in the name of Jesus, my merciful Savior that I ask all this, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Monday, November 24, 2014

God Chose Even You!


The Holy Bible

I'm sure that you've heard the story of my earlier life when I lived in the Jewish way. In those days I went all out in persecuting God's church. I was systematically destroying it. I was so enthusiastic about the traditions of my ancestors that I advanced head and shoulders above my peers in my career. Even then God had designs on me. Why, when I was still in my mother's womb he chose and called me out of sheer generosity! Now he has intervened and revealed his Son to me so that I might joyfully tell non-Jews about him.
(Bible Translation and Location: The Message – Galatians 1:13-16)

Thoughts:

When we recognize quality Christian leadership in a child today, and we happen to know that he is the son of a church leader, we almost instinctively whisper to our spouse, or friend, "there goes our next pastor", right? However, have you ever been inspired to earmark a child for a future pastorate who may cause the worst problems in his school or is a terror in church, and possibly a mother's nightmare? In these verses, Paul reminds us that we should never give up on a child, and might I dare say on an adult. You see, Paul (or Saul, as he was known in his previous life of sin) was every pastor's nightmare, because he was dreaded by their church members for the evil and persecution that he brought to towns where he located himself. And it was in this setting that God chose Saul/Paul to become a follower of His, and to use those leadership and evangelistic qualities to serve God and not the opposing team leader, Satan. We read in scripture how Paul became quite the success for God's ministry both to the early church, and to us through the many New Testament books that he authored. So let's bring this into perspective. What type of evil is it that you are involved in for which you have been trying to convince God that He could never love and/or accept you? Who is that person that you have given up hope on, and that you have been trying to convince everyone about, that they are a 'nobody'? When someone is at their worst, and we have totally given up on them, could God possibly reel them in, convict them of their sin, and use them to be a great leader for Him? Based on what we know about Paul, I believe that we can be encouraged to know that yes, God can convict even the chief of sinners, turn their lives around and use them for His ultimate glory! Think about it Christian, God chose even you and I while we were yet sinners, acting and looking quite the contrast compared to His perfection. Let's not under-sell the future possibilities for that Brother or Sister that we have been praying for. God's not dead and still very much in control of this world! Let's trust Him for the possibilities He sees in us, not just the ones that we can see or imagine with our own eyes!
 

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, I want to thank You for seeing me for more than I deserved to be. Although not a murderer or criminal, yet my life was terrible amiss compared to the perfection that You had set before me in Your Word. Praise God, You saw me as a creation of Yours with the possibility of accepting You and serving You. In spite of this miracle in my life, and I'm sure in the lives of many of my readers, yet we still look on others and write them off, instead of witnessing to them about the love of Jesus that is also available to them. Please forgive me Lord for not seeing the possibilities that others can become, with You as their Guide and personal Savior. Please teach us to see others as You see them: sinners who, after being touched by Your hand, can become prime ministers of Yours to use their energies to reach the remained unsaved family and friends who also need You. Father, You are awesome, and I thank You for being such a forgiving, loving God! Please hear my prayer and answer within the confines of Your perfect will, for I ask this in the name of Jesus, Your Son, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Promised Relief From This World!


The Holy Bible

May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. Jesus gave his life for our sins, just as God our Father planned, in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live.
All glory to God forever and ever! Amen.
(Bible Translation and Location: New Living Translation – Galatians 1:3-5)

Thoughts:

We see and hear so much in advertising about all that various products and vacations can do for us, but isn't it interesting how we never see where something might help relieve our stresses about crime, hatred, personal vendettas, robberies and other things that trouble us every day? That's why I believe God spoke to me so clearly and demanding in these verses today. Just imagine, God saw our stresses coming to the level where we're at today, so He created a plan to rescue us out of this mess and take us on to glory with Him. To accomplish this, He had to provide a means for those who develop a desire for change. So at that first Christmas He arranged for His Son to be born, knowing that He would later allow Him to undergo intense pain and suffering, even to the point of death. However, God also provided a miraculous resurrection, so that those of us who believe on Him, would have our key to salvation from this wretched world, and would also rise again to be with the Lord! Oh What A Savior! Oh what a love! So are you ready for that kind of peace today friend? Yes, in the midst of our busyness, our fears, our disappointments and our uncertainties. This peace, this Savior that I already know, can be your Lord and Savior today. This is a peace that passeth all understanding or explanation, no matter how much I might try to convince you. Click on the link "To Know Jesus' below and allow God to minister to you through the Bible verses included, for you too can also know Jesus in a very personal way!
 

Prayer:

Come Lord Jesus and give us relief from the stresses of this world, and the effects of sin on our lives. Thank You for patiently loving us, caring for us, directing us and providing the means for us to be with You eternally. Lord, You are good! Thank You! I am concerned for family and loved ones that have still not accepted You as their Lord and Savior, and therefore have no promise for tomorrow, and no hope for this life or the next. Please tender their hearts even now and draw them to You, their Creator, the only path to the Father. Jesus, I love You and so look forward to one day being relieved of all worry and concern, and replace that with full-time worship at Your feet! I ask this believing, in the name of Jesus, the Christ, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that I can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. I would also recommend the following resource to you: "To Know Jesus". Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at my church home, Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Your Defense Against Satan


The Holy Bible

16 At all times carry faith as a shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One.
(Bible Translation and Location: Good News Translation – Ephesians 6:16)

Thoughts:

I believe that our country is well prepared in defending us from the evil that others may want to inflict upon us because of hatred for one reason or another. However, as individuals, how prepared are we in defending ourselves against the evil, temptations and trials that come our way each day? Normally we would think of 'burning arrows' as something an enemy might shoot into the camp of an opposing group, and we could apply this verse, if taken out of context and on its own. However, the 'faith' being referenced in this verse is part of the armor of God that Paul is teaching us to put on each day so that we may remain protected and strong against the enemy, Satan. If taken literally, you might say that you've never been hit by an arrow! Therefore let me suggest to you what some of these 'arrows' might be that would cause Paul to suggest how we might defend ourselves:
  • Depression – I believe that there are probably more folk depressed today than ever before in history. Whether it's due to their concern about their health, family, job, finances or any number of things;
  • Discouragement – It is so discouraging for us to work our buns off for 8-16 hours per day, and still wind up broke at the end of the pay-week, or feel unappreciated by our supervisor, or not to receive a raise for our hard work;
  • Disappointment – You didn't win the award or the promotion that you worked so hard to achieve. You are not pleased with the spouse your child found to spend their lives with. You can't retire as early as you had hoped to.
There are numerous other 'arrows' that Satan may send our way to distract us from the path to righteousness and faith in our Lord and Savior. However, as children of God, refreshed by the Word daily, we know that God is in control of our lives and the circumstances that might impact it. The ability to take hold of these promises and know that God will be, and do, all that He said He would, is accomplished through our faith in our Creator. This 'faith' is possible through our first-hand knowledge and trust in the God of this universe, please read 'To Know God', and our daily walk, or relationship, with Jesus. With this 'faith' we can move mountains, per scripture, and we can put Satan at bay knowing that he is not in control of our lives, but instead Jesus, the Son of the living and all-powerful God is! Praise His holy name forever!!

Prayer:

Jesus, Savior, Lord, Son of God, we are often overwhelmed by the fiery arrows of Satan. Please help us to stay focused and know that our Deflector of those arrows, and our Defender is so much stronger, loving, caring and very capable of handling our defense against Satan. Please soften the hearts of those who might feel like their decision to accept You as Lord is one that is made and forgotten. Please encourage them into a daily, relational, personal interaction with You, and give them knowledge to know that it is only in, and through You, Your grace and Your power that we could ever expect to defend ourselves against the evil one. Lord, may this be a day that Your children will seek You, know You and worship You in all spirit and truth. May we renew our relationship with You and maintain a sweet daily communion with You so that our faith may be energized and reinvigorated to overcome Satan in his daily attacks on us. You are God alone, and in You I place my trust oh Lord! I ask all this in Your precious and most worthy name, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that I can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. I would also recommend the following resource to you: "To Know Jesus". Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at my church home, Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Test Yourself


The Holy Bible

5 Examine and test and evaluate your own selves to see whether you are holding to your faith and showing the proper fruits of it. Test and prove yourselves [not Christ]. Do you not yourselves realize and know [thoroughly by an ever-increasing experience] that Jesus Christ is in you—unless you are [counterfeits] disapproved on trial and rejected?
(Bible Translation and Location: The Amplified Bible – 2 Corinthians 13:5)

Thoughts:

I believe that the best way to prepare for a test of any kind is to practice responding to mock questions of what you feel will appear on the actual test. After all, you have read the material upon which the test is based, therefore you can, hopefully, answer almost any question around that particular subject. Similarly, in our Christian walk I believe that because we have:
  • Followed God's instructions on 'how to become His child';
  • Stayed in close communion with God, through regularly reading His 'Book of Instructions', the Bible;
  • Built a close relationship with Him through daily prayer;
  • Developed trust in your new-found Savior through answers to your prayers and your learned knowledge of Him, and
  • Showed evidence of being related to the One that you serve through talking and walking like Him
Then I believe that you can respond very positively, should Paul pose the same question to you that he did to his Corinthian church. Friends, just how you might have an occasional thorough exam by your doctor, I feel like this type of thorough spiritual checkup is also very important. For I believe that it will sever to highlight any cancers (sin) that might have eased its way into our lives, and it will help us to get alone with God and examine ourselves without any outside influences such as: the church, good Christian friends, or even those friends whose faith is questionable – as they will try very hard to convince you that your actions are fine. God's Word says that by 'our fruit' (our Godly actions, - the fruits of love, peace, joy, forgiveness, etc. as detailed in the Bible) the world will know us. Unless we are convinced of our faith, how can we possibly and effectively convince others? If we are to be obedient to God's Word and be constantly going and convincing others of their need for our Savior, then we must be on top of our game, friend! Why not join me in committing to this test today!

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, what a sobering thought that Paul presented to his church, and to us today. Way too often we can see the faults and shortcomings in others, but seldom do we stop and compare ourselves to the ultimate source – Your Son, Jesus Christ. Lord, I believe that almost everyone who might meditate on this devotional today will agree that we daily strive for perfection, however I don't believe that often enough do we stop and compare ourselves to the only true 'Perfect One'. Please humble the hearts of Your children today so that we may find the need to: read Your Word regularly; pray often; practice the fruits of the Spirit that You detailed in Your Word, and imitate You, our role model, in every way possible. All this is only possible because of the strength, wisdom, love and direction that only You can offer dear Lord, so I humbly ask this in Your precious and holy name, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Importance of Integrity


The Holy Bible

14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist…
(Bible Translation and Location: The New International Version – Ephesians 6:14a)

Thoughts:

In this chapter of Ephesians, Paul is warning the church, and I believe that since Paul's words are inspired by God for our benefit, that we also are being warned, to be prepared for challenging times. I find it interesting that the first thing we are warned to have in order, is our integrity. For Paul says that it is vitally important that we represent Truth, and that we will stand for Truth in every circumstance of life. I believe it is outstanding how the New Testament backs up and supports those things prophesied in the Old Testament, for in Isaiah 11:5 we were told that "Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist." and this was referring to Jesus Christ! Now, if we are to be 'little Christs', how much more important it is that we also always have Truth as our foundation? I believe that it all boils down to integrity, for if we had found where Jesus didn't always stand for Truth, we would have lost all faith in Him as our divine Savior. Do you suppose that the reason we may not be winning the lost for Christ is that we have lost our integrity in their eyes? Are they seeing someone different outside the four walls of our churches than they see when worshiping with us in church? God saw integrity of vital importance for His Son, Jesus, to have prevalent in His life. Paul saw it of super importance in his life. May I challenge you to join me in also making this of utmost importance in our lives? We will be put to the test daily friend. Be sure that the world can clearly see whose you are in every scenario, if you ever expect to be a witness to them for Jesus.


Prayer:

Lord Jesus, thank You for showing us the way of truth, and for living a consistent life of truth, in spite of the circumstances that You were forced into by very evil people. Most of us have never been pushed to the limits that You have, because we want so badly to please others, and are so filled with greed, that we often cave in to the ways of the world. Please forgive us Lord, and raise up a multitude of saints that will stand firm for what they believe in Your Word and let the world know what it truly means to be a follower of yours. This may sometimes place us in unpopular situations, because we may have to go to the back of the line, or our choices may cost us more money. Father, please help us to always evaluate our decision based on our loyal servitude to You vs being more concerned about this old world, Satan or even our friends. Please fill us with boldness and confidence to stand for Truth in every circumstance of life, so that there will be no doubt about whose we are. Only You can give us this strength dear Jesus, so I ask all this humbly in Your precious and holy name, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

God's Grace is all you Need!


The Holy Bible

7 So that I would not become too proud of the wonderful things that were shown to me, a painful physical problem was given to me. This problem was a messenger from Satan, sent to beat me and keep me from being too proud. 8 I begged the Lord three times to take this problem away from me. 9 But he said to me, "My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you." So I am very happy to brag about my weaknesses. Then Christ's power can live in me.
(Bible Translation and Location: New Century Version – 2 Corinthians 12:7-9)

Thoughts:

How often do we stand before our mighty and powerful God and question Him about all that is allowing to happen in our lives, and in the lives of His holy children? But wait a minute, isn't that questioning the ways of God, the reasoning behind His decisions, His perfect will and design for us? I found it very humbling to be reminded of what Paul said in this scripture today, because I believe that God patiently waits for us to get over ourselves and totally surrender to Him so that He may actually have a chance to prove Himself to us. Friends, when we accept Jesus as Lord and King of our lives, it's not for the purpose of a security blanket, although we are very secure in the blanket of His arms around us and the warmth of His love for us. Instead, we actually enter into a Father and son/daughter relationship with Him. Let's remember that when we are totally surrendered to God and open to His powerful hand upon us, He can then have the freedom to bless us in ways that we would never have imagined or asked for. Friends, I was reminded that instead of beating my head against the wall when everything around me is collapsing and spinning out of my control, I need to remember that God's grace is enough for me and through that weakness/trial/temptation, His mighty hand is still in charge and needing to take control of my situation. Oh that we can learn to surrender ourselves to Him much sooner than later! When we consider the pride we (dads) have when we see our children succeed and do well, to a great part because of our love and persistence in their lives, I cannot begin to imagine how proud God must be of His children who takes full advantage of His grace, His love and His instructions to live more noble and praiseworthy lives – the way that He designed us to be, and rejoice in seeing every day. So if our Father has full control, and loves us enough to have sent His only Son for our redemption, tell me again what might cause us to be down in the mouth and depressed in our souls? We are blessed beyond all words friends, let's act that way and praise God with that in mind!


Prayer:

Dear Lord, please continue to impress upon us the need to live like Your blessed and admired children! We are covered by the sacrifice You made for us and the invitation we accepted to allow Your grace into our lives. We are loved enough that warranted You sacrificing Jesus so that we might live eternally with You. Oh that we may 'get it'. The fact that we are blessed and loved children of the Almighty God! Lord, may Your power become perfect in us today, so that we may go on to be powerful ambassadors for You, is my prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Savior, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Monday, November 17, 2014

When Life is At Its Toughest


The Holy Bible

When life is heavy and hard to take,
    go off by yourself. Enter the silence.
Bow in prayer. Don't ask questions:
    Wait for hope to appear.
Don't run from trouble. Take it full-face.
    The "worst" is never the worst.
(Bible Translation and Location: The Message – Lamentations 3:28-30)

Thoughts:

I believe that we all respond differently to trials, struggles, and life when it seems to be at its toughest crossroads. I also believe that we have become a people who will go insane when faced with total silence! We seem to turn the television on while we work, just for the extra noise. We listen to music to calm us and help us go to sleep. We have music turn on automatically as our daily alarm. Our cars are filled with music or perhaps the spoken Word while we drive to and from work. However, in this scripture, we are told that when life seems to be tough and perhaps even at its worst for us, we need to slip away by ourselves and at some point in that silence bow in prayer before our heavenly Father. Friends, He knows exactly what we are going through and wants very much to help us through our challenging times, but He wants us to initiate the request for help. This teaches us patience, submission, humility and a heart full of respect for the Creator of this earth to care that much about us. I found it interesting that this was not just something that God thought to throw out just for us weaklings, because in the New Testament we are told that Jesus himself went to the garden to pray alone. While He could have easily prayed in the presence of His disciples, He chose to follow the pattern taught in this scripture, He went off into the garden alone to pray. Life was at its toughest for Him, and He followed this direction to give God His undivided, private, and full attention. I can't be sure about you friend, but with me it seems like I can use this solution at least on a daily basis, due to the stresses, worries and concerns of life today. There is another verse that also comes to mind: Be still and know that I am God. I receive peace and resolve from knowing that God is not only available to me, but is also right beside me ready and willing to help me when I ask because of a need. He just loves me that much! What an awesome God that I serve! Friend, this same God is also available to you. Please consider this, and learn to lean on Him as Your everlasting Father.
 

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, thank You for reminding me that I don't need to wait until I have exhausted all personal efforts before coming to You for help and direction. Thank You for being available to Your children at all times. Thank You for reminding me that You needed time with the Father during the tough times of Your life. How much more do I need You in my life today? I have friends who seem to be at wits end with all of their challenges also. Please give us all a yearning for You on a daily basis, so that You might be the first one that we turn to, rather than the last alternative. Thank You Lord for Your faithfulness, love and provisions so that I may live life to its fullest, without stress, and in line with Your perfect will! Bless those that might meditate on these words today, is my humble prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Lord, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Change


The Holy Bible

38 Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that everything comes — both calamity and blessing?39 Why should any living person complain when punished for his sins?40 Let us carefully examine our ways, and let us return to the Lord.41 Let us lift up our hearts and our hands to God in heaven
(Bible Translation and Location: The New English Translation – Lamentations 3:38-41)

Thoughts:

I have always been told that the truest meaning of insanity is: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results! In verse 40 we are reminded that there should be a reckoning day where we have a serious, honest day of inflection with ourselves, especially when we realize that we the reason for our struggles and/or hardships might be because we are being punished by the Almighty because of our sin. For God is telling us that we should then stop, carefully examine our ways (compared to the ways taught by God in His word – not compared to your neighbor, coworker or your best friend), and return to the Lord. Now, I believe it is very evident to see that for us to redirect our lives from something that God dislikes, or something that is contrary to His Word and His will for our lives, then 'Change' has to take place. Otherwise we will continue doing the wrong thing knowing that we are living out of the will of God and contrary to His commands. The next verse (41) helps us to understand how we might achieve this change. In this world, whenever someone is caught doing something wrong, they are asked to surrender themselves to the authorities. When we lift up our hearts and hands to God, we are surrendering ourselves to His authority. To truly come before a righteous and holy God, we must first seek a cleansing from Him, and agree to accept the change that He might dictate to us, in order to be like Him. When last have you placed yourself before the God of all creation and asked Him to examine your very thoughts and to cleanse you from all unrighteousness, so that You may be more in line with His will for your life? To truly represent Him, be His child and be more like Him, we must surrender the ways (sin) of this wicked world, seek His face, and return to the ways of God. Anything less than this will merely be lip service and life as it is right now. Please let us commit to 'Change', right now!


Prayer:

Lord Jesus, Your Word achieves its purpose every time. It drives deep inside and causes us to see our unfaithfulness and our sin, the reason for our separation from You, the reasons why our loved ones and friends are not being impacted by us for You. Please forgive us. Please don't give up on us, but continue to patiently direct us towards all that You need us to see, and all that You need us to understand and follow in Your Word. Thank You for loving me enough to care about my future with You in Heaven. Thank You for providing The Way of us to enter Heaven's portals one day and worship You in person. You are Holy, Almighty and worthy of our praise oh Lord. I thank You for Your amazing grace and Your indescribable love. Please touch each one reading this devotional today. Direct them to the areas of their lives that must be affected by 'Change' for them to know You personally, and/or draw closer to You, if they already know You. My prayer is asked in humility and thanksgiving, for I ask it in the precious name of Jesus - Lord, Savior, Almighty God and Everlasting Father, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Give As An Indication of Whose You Are


The Holy Bible

25 Lazy people who refuse to work are only killing themselves; 26all they do is think about what they would like to have. The righteous, however, can give, and give generously.
(Bible Translation and Location: The Good News Translation – Proverbs 21:25-26)

Thoughts:

I have found wisdom in the book of Proverbs, but found it challenging to find something in them to share in these devotionals. However, God challenged me in these two verses that we are centering on today. For I believe that in today's society, even Christians have obligated themselves financially to a state that they have to be totally, and perhaps even overly committed to earning the next dollar instead of relaxing in the peace of God's love. In fact, I am convinced that most of us are working such stressful jobs and extended hours, and we are so tired when we finally get home, that several things are impacted:
  • Family structure – Look at how the family is so stressed that there is little time for love, devotion, sharing and worship? Divorce rates are at an all-time high. Kids are leaving homes often to do 'their worldly thing' that often excludes churchgoing, but often includes criminal mischief.
  • Daily time with the Lord - Often due to stress and tiredness, our family and friends are spending more time in bed and excluding time with the Lord. One of the most important things that we should do, yet it is getting neglected.
  • Biblical Practices - You can't teach what you don't practice yourself – Imagine trying to encourage your child to pray, when they never see you on your knees. Or force your child to attend church, but it is evident that church attendance is at the very bottom of your priority list. Or to read their Bible for their godly instruction, but you're having trouble finding yours because you hardly ever use it.
These things that I mentioned are just a few of the things that show evidence of whose we are friends. The Bible says in Luke 12:27 that we should be as free to worship, and to give and spend time with the Lord as the lilies. What have we done to ourselves friends? Could Satan be getting too deep into our lives through things we have, or would like to have, that he is pushing out our desire to spend the necessary time with God? Remember, God is the giver of all good things in our lives, but He is a jealous God. Let's not expects His gracious gifts but give our allegiance to Satan and all of his tactics to distract us. Let's re-learn the art of giving to God, both of ourselves and of our gifts that He has blessed us with.
 

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, I come humbly before You today guilty of much of the above. You have blessed me immensely, however there are parts of my life that indicate my total allegiance might be a bit skewed. Please help me to get back on track, to re-learn the art of total allegiance to You and not to be so attached to this world that brings nothing but stress and heartaches. Please touch the hearts of my readers today that they too might be inspired to examine their lives and to give of themselves and their finances unreservedly to You and Your causes. Lord, I believe that our churches should be the one thing that survives all financial stresses, as You continue to go to give liberally to us even through earthly financial depressions. Oh that this might be evident in our lives and in the life of our churches today, is my humble prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Lord, AMEN!

 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Passion of Ministry


The Holy Bible

10 As surely as the truth of Christ is in me, no one in all of Greece will ever stop me from boasting about this.
(Bible Translation and Location: The New Living Translation – 2 Corinthians 11:10)

Thoughts:

I hope that no one will be turned off from the subject of today's devotional, thinking that 'Ministry' is reserved only for your pastor, priest or congregational leader. For I believe that God's Word is clear in designating each of His faithful children as His ministers, or imitators, or promoters, or believers responsible for sharing what we know about God. About the reason for our Joy, our Hope and our Eternal Destination! What really caught my attention in this short verse, is the point Paul made about not allowing anyone to stop him in what he was doing! Wow, do you realize how little the interruption might be that stops us from simply attending church? Can you recall how simple the reason was that prevented us from witnessing to that friend who was hurting and needing our Savior in their life? Isn't it amazing how we tend to stay clear of those in a crowd who tend to openly witness? We hardly want to be seen associating with such a 'freak' or fanatic. Sad isn't it? Interesting how we would probably place ourselves in harm's way to protect a friend from danger, yet we would just as soon see them die and go to eternity in Hell with Satan and his cohorts, rather than simply sharing the joy in our hearts because of Jesus. Friends, time is short. Jesus could come today! That friend you've always felt God pointing you to share His salvation with, could go for his/her last drive or flight today and die in route to their destination. Please don't let an opportunity pass by to share God's love with them before it's too late. Like Paul, don't let anything or anyone stop you from sharing your passion, your ministry, your love for the Lord, with someone that God leads you to on this day!


Prayer:

Dear Father, You allowed Your very own Son to bear the shame of crucifixion as a sign of Your love for us, and as a sacrifice for us that enables us to one day be with You in glory! What amazing love! You sent men of passion to share Your Word with a world undeserving of the sacrifice they made, yet they did it because of Your love for them, and their dedication to, and love for, You. In spite of all that, today You have given us the choice to openly share the joy of our salvation with unbelieving family, friends and coworkers with a passion like that of Paul, or to simply hide the light and source of our happiness, and allow these ones to go on thinking that we are just that 'good' or 'holy'. Please forgive us Lord. Please place a new boldness and passion in us that would ignite a new fire of desire and passion to openly share the source of our joy with all that we might come into contact with. Lord, may others have a desire to know You today, because of the change You will make in our lives. It's all about You oh Lord, not us. I humbly ask this in the wonderful name of Jesus, AMEN!


FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Things to Do While We Wait


The Holy Bible

The end of the world is coming soon. Therefore, be earnest and disciplined in your prayers. Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay.
(Bible Translation and Location: The New Living Translation – 1 Peter 4:7-9)

Thoughts:

Living in a hurricane prone area of the world, we know how to be prepared for the often short notice about an approaching hurricane. However, when warned, we quickly hit the streets and pay a visit to our grocery stores and possibly to hardware stores for last minute items to make sure we are fully ready for eventual power cuts or breaks in deliveries to our local stores. Similarly, living in this world and having taken the first step of readiness for God's eminent return, God, through Peter, is warning us of some last minute things we should really be doing to avoid any regrets when we stand before Him. Here are some things that we should be doing right now friends:
  • Be earnest and disciplined in our prayers – A Christian living in a world stained by sin, and where sin abounds, must stay close to God and constantly seek His guiding and protective hand to help us to stay on track and not be distracted by the sin that initially entrapped us and kept us at bay from God. "Being earnest and disciplined at it" gives me the impression that we are to make this a priority even when we don't feel like it, but like vitamins and food itself, do it because we are told to, and because we know that we need it;
  • Show deep love one for another – Generally we will exude what's inside of us. If God has filled us with His love, then we should have no trouble showing love for one another. However, I believe that just how a perfect God chose to love imperfect people like us, God wants us to love even those who might otherwise be unlovable. Ones we despise because they believe different to us, or act in ways that we have overcome (with God's help). Ones that have hurt us, or who we may have hurt, because the Word says that this kind of love will be greater than the hurt, and also help us to overcome the hurt. Loving those who are different to us is much like what God was faced with when He looked down on us – sinners, yet He loved us anyway. Praise the name of the Lord!
  • Freely share your home and your food – Who blessed us with what we have, friends? Therefore, because all that we have, became possible because of our loving God, we should therefore pass the blessing along and bless others with it! Let's truly be an example of the Savior that we worship and adore!
Friends, we are God's very own and He has blessed us way more than we could ever imagine or deserve. As He has blessed us, let us therefore bless others! Let's learn to pass along the blessings and not just hog them up to ourselves.

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I thank you for giving me Your Word to plainly tell me what I should be doing right now. As I was obedient in Your call upon my life to accept You as my Lord and Savior, please continue to nudge me along with reminders to live according to Your book of instructions so that I might do what You require of me on a daily basis. These verses today are excellent reminders of what I should be doing as I wait for Your return. Please give me strength today, and a willing and obedient heart as I strive to obey You and do Your will. Please allow Your Word to make an indelible imprint on the minds of Christians that read this today so that they also might be realigned to obedience. For others that You may point to this devotional today, please work a miracle in their life so that as they see the need to surrender their life to You, they may also catch a glimpse of Your expectations after their initial decision. Thank You for being so gracious to even me dear Lord. May I now be gracious and obedient in response to You. I am asking this in Your awesome, powerful and loving name, Jesus my Lord, AMEN!


 

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day's devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

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