Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Archive for March, 2012

God our Protector

Scripture: Psalm 91.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Psalm 91:9-12 (HCSB)

9 Because you have made the LORD—my refuge, the Most High—your dwelling place,

10 no harm will come to you; no plague will come near your tent.

11 For He will give His angels orders concerning you, to protect you in all your ways.

12 They will support you with their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

This Psalm reminds me that although some may place their faith in bank accounts and riches, some in government or military protection, some in parents or those in supervisory positions over them, but for those of us that place our faith and trust in Jesus, we can be assured that: all things work together for the good of those who love God—those whom he has called according to his plan. (Romans 8:28). Friends we can reflect on each day and see how awesome God has been in our lives. Many times all we need to do is look beyond the little hiccups/temptations and trials, and concentrate on the mighty works of God, to realize how wonderful it is that we are so important in His eyes that He would watch over us, provide for us and protect us. In fact, the Psalmist said that our God would give orders to His angels on how to best protect us, even to the extent that we would not bump our toes on a stone. Wow, this is the God of our universe, yet He loves even me to the degree that He would watch over me in such detail and love! Father, I adore You today, and thank You for being my Savior and Lord. How could I ever say “thank You” sufficiently?


PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Lord Jesus, You gave up Your life so that I may live eternally with You in Heaven. You provide life itself in abundant ways each day. You display love to me in these ways and numerous other ways. Thank You for reminding me of the ways that You protect me as well. Wow, What A Mighty God I serve! Thank You Lord for loving me in so many ways! May this be a day that I may share my faith with others, that I show Christian love to others, that I reflect the Lord that saved me from a life destined for Hell. Thank You for providing for me every day.

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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Let the Praises rise to the Author!

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 10.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Corinthians 10:17-18 (NLT)

17 As the Scriptures say, “If you want to boast, boast only about the LORD.”

18 When people commend themselves, it doesn’t count for much. The important thing is for the Lord to commend them.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

There are many of God’s warriors that sink a lot of time into ministry. However, we must all be on guard for times when we see God moving so mightily in areas in which we are involved, to not shove our chest out and try to take any credit for all that is being done. I know that in many instances around work, and maybe even around home, if we don’t speak up for ourselves many things that we do will go unnoticed. I am reminded from this passage though, that what I do in God’s name and for His sake and ministry, it is for God’s glory and not mine. I was privileged to see this expressed so vividly in a church service on Monday evening, when a wonderful choir raised the roof in expression of wonderful praise and worship to our King, however when the lead singer completed the song and the whole church congregation was clapping and praising God, he simply raised his hands and told us to send the praises up to God, not to him. Wow, that’s what it’s all about friends! Thank God that He still uses broken vessels such as us, so pass the glory on to Jesus for any good that results.

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Father, please help us to not become prideful, for pride comes before a fall. I acknowledge that in and of my own self, I am worthless. However filled with Your Holy Spirit, I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me and gives me wisdom and health to be His workman and messenger. Praise be to God for the great things that He accomplishes each and every day, and especially for the things that He might work through me to accomplish. All glory to God on high!

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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Honor God by Giving Generously to Him

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Corinthians 9:10-15 (GW)

10 God gives seed to the farmer and food to those who need to eat. God will also give you seed and multiply it. In your lives he will increase the things you do that have his approval.

11 God will make you rich enough so that you can always be generous. Your generosity will produce thanksgiving to God because of us.

12 What you do to serve others not only provides for the needs of God’s people, but also produces more and more prayers of thanksgiving to God.

13 You will honor God through this genuine act of service because of your commitment to spread the Good News of Christ and because of your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else.

14 With deep affection they will pray for you because of the extreme kindness that God has shown you.

15 I thank God for his gift that words cannot describe.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Paul, God’s messenger, told the Corinthians that as they give towards the work in Jerusalem and to the benefit of Christians there, that they in turn would be blessed. I’m sure that many times non-Christians look at all that God’s people give in tithes, offerings and in their time in ministry, and they question why? Obedience and trust are probably two of the most important characteristics in a relationship. As Christians, we are taught in God’s Word that because God blesses us in so many ways, so we are to bless Him, His work and his workers, by giving freely to them. In fact, in terms of finances, a minimal command of 10% is given in the Word for us. I think too often we look at that amount and think back to the days before we became a follower of Christ, and compare that $1.00 that we dropped in the offering plate to the amount we now calculate as 10% and we start to reason within ourselves how we need that money a whole lot more than the church. Friends, God didn’t give any conditions to the command of tithing. He expects us to give, because He has given to us. Let’s get used to the idea that only 90% of our income belongs to us (and the government!!), so we must adjust our spending/expenses accordingly. Let’s not count on the portion that don’t belong to us. Also, it is not our concern what the church spends that money on. Now, as a member of a church, I want to be a part of business meetings to be sure that we are being good stewards of the monies that God has given to us through tithes and offerings, because He will hold us accountable for the way that we spend His money. As a church, our budgets should reflect more money towards ministry to others rather than fun, games and luxuries for ourselves. So give as you are blessed by God. I love verse 11: God will generously give us more so that we can continue to bless others, so that they can continue to produce thanksgiving to God. Count your blessings this week by what you give!

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Father, You bless me immensely. How can I ever give enough to show my appreciation? My blessings are especially recognized when I look at those that are sick, those that have lost their jobs, those that are unable to work because of health issues. I am being blessed beyond my ability to fully express my appreciation. Thank You for having Paul remind me this morning about all that You give to me so that I may freely give to You, and that others may offer up prayers of thanksgiving to You because of how they have been blessed by the church. All my praise is directed towards You oh Lord, because it is only through Your grace and because of Your love that I can now give in return. Thank You for Your blessings! Please touch the hearts of those that may not please You in the amount they give, or in the manner in which they give. Please use Your Word to touch lives and open the eyes of those that may not recognize the author of all good things in their lives. You give freely to us each day, help us to be obedient in return.

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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JOY for Those Who Trust God

Scripture: Psalm 84.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Psalm 84:10-12 (NLT)

10 A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God than live the good life in the homes of the wicked.

11 For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.

12 O LORD of Heaven’s Armies, what joy for those who trust in You.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Looking at the title of this devotional you may wonder if I am strictly a ‘positive teaching’ kind of guy. Well, you may not be far off in that assumption, because as in the case of David, I believe that for those of us that have surrendered our hearts to the Lord, we can rejoice in the good times or in the bad times, knowing that our destiny is in heaven with Jesus. After all Christians, let’s consider what David said in verse 11:

  1. God is our sun and our shield;
  2. God gives us grace and glory;
  3. God will withhold no good thing from those of us that do good, and as Christians, we should live our daily lives so intertwined and aligned with the life of Jesus that we should be doing what is right in God’s eyes every day.

In consideration of the above, I can’t see any good reason why I shouldn’t believe that there is JOY for me every day, as I trust in God. Friends, if you know my Savior as Lord, then I encourage you to trust wholly in Him; live your life like He teaches us and have exampled for us; do what is right in God’s sight, then you too can celebrate the JOY that Jesus will fill your heart with as you trust in God! If you don’t know this Savior of whom I speak this morning, please contact me via email (below) and I will gladly work with you.

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Father God, in a world of total chaos, unlimited pressures, and total disregard for the teachings, thoughts and examples of Christ, it is extremely challenging to rise above that and do what is right and pleasing in Your sight. But Lord, that’s where I am at today, for I want to rise above these earthly temptations, trials, backbiting, envy and strife and I want to exemplify You in everything that I do, say and practice. I want to reflect Your love. I want to sound so much like You that others will see and hear Jesus. While I am excited about the prize of overwhelming JOY, I want to live this kind of life in obedience to the call You have placed on my life and the decision I have made to follow You. Please give me the wisdom and strength to be Your follower today and represent You well before an unsaved world.

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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The Gift of Giving

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 8.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Corinthians 8:1-2 (NLT)

1 Now I want you to know, dear brothers and sisters, what God in his kindness has done through the churches in Macedonia.

2 They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity.

2 Corinthians 8:7 (NLT)

7 Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us—I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving.

2 Corinthians 8:11-12 (NLT)

11 Now you should finish what you started. Let the eagerness you showed in the beginning be matched now by your giving. Give in proportion to what you have.

12
Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

The theme of this whole chapter is on giving. Too often non-Christians are turned off from church because they feel like, and even fear, that the church begs for money too much. This is so unfortunate, for ‘church’ was never started so we would have a place to give, even though it is the place that we give to show our obedience to God and our love and appreciation to Him for all that He has given to us. The primary function of the church building is to give every opportunity to the people attending to know our Lord and Savior, and this is done through a non-believer surrendering their lives over to Jesus and accepting Him as Lord of their life. Secondly, it is a place where those who have accepted Jesus as Lord can grow that love in a deeper and even more meaningful way by learning more from God’s Word and applying it to our daily lives. It is out of these two acts that Christians want to be obedient in giving to God, according to His Word, and it is from the overflow of abundant joy in our relationship with God that we give generously to the Lord – generally for the ongoing work of the Lord in and through the church and/or its mission work. Now a few things about this giving:

  1. How much do I give? – Monetarily, God’s Word teaches that we give a tithe of 10% of our income. Example might be that if you earn $500 per week, you give $50 to the Lord. This should be based on what you earn, not what your net take home pay is, or what is left over after you pay all of your bills. For many of us, this is a matter of trust and strict obedience, for from our perspective we can find many reasons to tell God that we just can’t afford to give that much. Friend, I can tell you from personal experience that when you give to God out of obedience, and because of your love and relationship with Him, you will not be short with what you have left to meet your expenses. God will provide for your ‘needs’! In fact, we find that we can cover a whole lot more with the 90%, than we could ever think of covering with the 100% if we withhold from God!
  2. How can I be assured that the church will be wise in spending the money given by tithers? – There are several references in this chapter to giving to God, and in neither of them do we see that this (what the church does with the money) is a prerequisite of the giver. God has blessed me with a job, with salvation and in numerous ways, so I give in obedience to Him. He will hold churches and their leaders responsible for the manner in which they use funds given for His work.
  3. I don’t have much to give, what should I do? – There is a story about a woman who gave a penny to the Lord, because it was all she had. In God’s Words He told the leaders that she was the biggest giver that day. In verse 11 we are reminded that we give in proportion to what we have. Therefore some can only give a penny, while others may be able to give $1,000. One gift is no more valuable than the other in God’s eyes, because He is looking at the heart in which you gave – honesty, appreciation, love, etc.
  4. Money is not mentioned in this chapter, so why talk about money? – It is sad to say, but too often God’s people will reflect their heart by what they give monetarily. But money is not the only form of giving to the Lord, for we should also give to him as Paul did, through our works to ensure that others who are without Christ, might come to know Him as Lord. This means that we should also give of ourselves for furthering God’s kingdom.

Friend, God is good to us every day. Join me in showing appreciation to Him though giving hearts!

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Thank You Father for giving the ultimate gift – Your only son, Jesus. Because of Your gift, I can look forward to spending eternity with the Master of this universe, the One who expressed love for me in such a sacrificial way that has never been witnessed again by humankind. Thank You for loving me so much to give so generously. Please continue to impress upon me the need to give back to You in all that I do and with all that I have.

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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He’s Still God!

Scripture: Psalm 78-80.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Psalm 80:19 (NLT)

19 Turn us again to yourself, O LORD God of Heaven’s Armies. Make your face shine down upon us. Only then will we be saved.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

As I read these chapters I would have thought that I was reading a newspaper article from today’s church leaders, if I wouldn’t have known any difference. For David brought back to memory all that God had done for His people in bringing them through the wilderness, and yet they turned their backs on God. This is the same with us today. We go into very sincere prayer when we are in need, but when our prayers are answered and things are on the up-swing, we are generally nowhere to be found. Yes friends, I realize that God is especially good to us when we are in our valleys and in deep prayer before Him, but don’t you find that it is so much easier to praise Him and adore Him when everything is going well for you? Let’s always remember that God is there for us in the good times and in the bad; on the mountain top and in the valley; when we are at our best and praising Him all day long and at those times that we are just not sure how we will ever make it through the rough times that we may be going through. No matter our circumstances, let’s remember that He’s still God and that He will never leave us or forsake us. He loves us too much for that, praise be to God!

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Lord, please make Your face shine down on us today so that we may be saved from the vile of Satan, so that we may represent You well in all that we say and do. We need Your touch, O God.

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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Be Holy as God is Holy

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 7.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Corinthians 6:16-18 (NLT)

16 … We are the temple of the living God. As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people.

17 Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD. Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you.

18 And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty.”

2 Corinthians 7:1 (NLT)

1 Because we have these promises, dear friends, let us cleanse ourselves from everything that can defile our body or spirit. And let us work toward complete holiness because we fear God.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

I fell in love with verse 1 of chapter 7, but for me to share that with you I had to pull in the promises that Paul was referring to in verse 1. Paul told the Corinthians that there really was no reason for them to be living the way they were, after all God had been so gracious to them and blessed them in so many ways. We are no different today friend. God sacrificed His one and only son, Jesus, so that we might have a way to enter heaven’s gates and enjoy eternity with Him. That’s the ultimate expression of love, but what has happened since that? Do we witness the love of Jesus in other ways? Of course we do, for God blesses us beyond measure each and every day. You might quickly retort that I must be thinking of someone else who receives daily blessings. No friend, God gave me a roof over my head and I enjoyed a good night’s sleep. He blessed me with a partner so that I wasn’t alone. He gave me strength to arise this morning, clothes to wear and His Word to be reminded of His love and provisions. I could go on and on, but many times the things I mentioned are taken for granted and it causes us to feel like we deserve those blessings for being a part of the community in which we live. No friend, it is God that provides our every blessing. Therefore, in verse one Paul reminds the Corinthians, as we are reminded today: Because we have been blessed in all the ways that we can sit and enumerate, let us clean up our act and get rid of everything that might hinder us, everything that may cause us to think and act negatively – things that defile, or negatively impact our Christian walk. Any and everything that blocks us from being holy, before a holy and righteous God, should be laid aside. Only I can say what those things are in my life, so I will seek God’s forgiveness, guidance and strength to help me in that respect. If you are facing a similar scenario in your life today friend, I encourage you to seek God’s face and His help to lay those things aside so that you might look full into the eyes of Jesus with a clear and unobstructed mind. Search me O God, may You find no wicked way in me.

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Father, You are so good to me. You bless me in so many ways, yet I allow the things of this world to find its way into my life and disrupt the joy that You give to me. Please help me this day to stay focused on Your goodness. Please forgive me for letting my mind stray and sometimes lose my focus of Your love and goodness to me. In my efforts to be more like You every day, I must seek out ways to be clean and holy, for I represent a God who is ultimately ‘Holy’ and just. Please guide me into Your path of righteousness every day.

 

àWords underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com.
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