Archive for June 2012

A Priority on Prayer

June 28, 2012

Scripture: 1 Timothy 2.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

1 Timothy 2:8 (NLT)

8 In every place of worship, I want men to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from anger and controversy.

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

One of the least attended services at a church is Prayer meeting. Paul, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, told Timothy that men are to dedicate themselves to prayer. Now, some will argue that Paul said this and not Jesus. Friend, these words would not be in the Holy Book if they were not inspired by, authorized by and blessed by God. This is God’s Holy Word, so I believe that it is actually Him speaking through Paul to Timothy. However, because it is in God’s Word, then I also believe that it is there for our spiritual nourishment, direction and benefit. When we see how men are failing in their responsibility to God and His commands, is it any wonder why we see a country rapidly going downhill in morals and Godly living? Friends, we must do our part and be the Christian men that God expected us to be. We can’t always control the direction of our government or the direction of our country at large, but we can commit to do what God ordered and allow Him to take care of the larger things. Men, please commit with me today to do our part – lift up holy hands – free from anger and controversy, and pray to the Master. Let’s do our part!

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

Lord Jesus, You know how busy we have made ourselves and how little priority we place on You, Christianity and the church. Please begin a new work in me – a priority to make You first in everything, especially my Christian walk and talk and meeting with other believers to worship and pray. You gave everything for me, please help me to give in return so that You may bless others through my giving.

 

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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How Appreciative Are We?

June 27, 2012

Scripture: John 12.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

John 12:1-3 (NLT)

1 Six days before the Passover celebration began, Jesus arrived in Bethany, the home of Lazarus—the man he had raised from the dead.

2 A dinner was prepared in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, and Lazarus was among those who ate with him.

3 Then Mary took a twelve-ounce jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard, and she anointed Jesus’ feet with it, wiping his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance.

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

In this passage we should remember that this dinner occurred just a short while after Lazarus was raised from the dead by Jesus. We should also remember that Martha was the one who went out and greeted Jesus when He came to raise Lazarus from the dead. Some of the comments by Martha show us that she doubted that Jesus could do anything about her brother’s death at this late stage, for he had been in the grave for four days. Now let’s study these verses in light of this background. I have read this passage so many times, yet God spoke to me so directly this time. I had to assume that a loved one had passed away and that Jesus came into town and raised that person from the dead – something that we generally don’t even think to ask for in prayer. A few days later I am at a dinner meeting or even at church and Jesus is there. What would I do to show: (1) My remorse for having doubted that He could bring life into a dead person, or (2) My appreciation for Him bringing my loved one back to life, and (3) My amazement that He loved me so much, that in spite of my doubt, yet He would come and dine in a place where even I would be. Yes I was provoked to think about what I might do that may truly reveal my love for Jesus, my thankfulness to Him and my reassurance of His power, His mercy and His grace. Friends, I believe that all Jesus demands back from us is that we truly love Him and commit ourselves fully to Him and that we treat Him and love Him as our everlasting, ever loving, all powerful Father. Do you know Him in this kind of personal way? If you are troubled in any way by this, please contact me via email and allow me to pray with you about this.

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

Lord Jesus, I am convinced that You are the same all powerful Savior that I read about in this passage this morning. Martha gave up everything she had to show her appreciation and love to You. I pray that I will learn to do the same each day of my life. Please especially help me today to share Your love with someone who may not know You as Lord and personal Savior. Please touch the hearts of those who may read this devotional and work a miracle in their lives today. Thank You for loving me so much that You gave. May I also give back to You out of a heart of love today. Thank You for Your Word, and especially thank You for opening my eyes to the truths revealed through Your Word.

 

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 a Prime Example of What God Did For You

June 26, 2012

Scripture: 1 Timothy 1.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

1 Timothy 1:15-17 (NLT)

15 This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”—and I am the worst of them all.

16 But God had mercy on me so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners. Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life.
17 All honor and glory to God forever and ever! He is the eternal King, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God. Amen.

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

These are some challenging words for us this morning. Think about it. God saved us from the sin and evil deeds that we were involved in, and He is able to use us as an example to others going through the very same thing, so that they would realize that they too can learn the power of God and see proof that He could help them leave that type of life. Wow, that means that He can use each of us to help work out the salvation in others, maybe even those that we may have felt were impossible to reach. I am reminded of a song/hymn “He who began a good work in me…” and I give God the glory for any good that He might accomplish through me for His glory. There is a phrase that a previous pastor of my church stuck on the pulpit so that he would be reminded of it each time that he preached: “Oh that they may see Jesus”. I pray that I might live that type of life!

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

Father, what a reminder that You were able to use Paul – a persecutor of Christians, but converted to an enabler of Christian churches in the towns within his reach. I pray that You will benefit from everything accomplished by me and that lives will be positively affected by Your witness through me. May today be filled with opportunities to let my light shine and that it may be received by others in a way that would have an impact on their decision to accept and serve You.

 

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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Rebelled Against God?

June 25, 2012

Scripture: Isaiah 1.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Isaiah 1:2-4 (NLT)

2 Listen, O heavens! Pay attention, earth! This is what the LORD says: “The children I raised and cared for have rebelled against me.

3 Even an ox knows its owner, and a donkey recognizes its master’s care— but Israel doesn’t know its master. My people don’t recognize my care for them.”

4 Oh, what a sinful nation they are— loaded down with a burden of guilt. They are evil people, corrupt children who have rejected the LORD. They have despised the Holy One of Israel and turned their backs on him.

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

I believe that every person would rather hear a message of “Well Done, Good and Faithful Servant”, rather than we are sinful, loaded with guilt, evil, corrupt, rejected the One who created us and cared for us. Although this passage was directed to Judah and the condition in which God saw them at the time, yet I can’t help but think how much worse we are today than they were. God reminded us that even an ox knows its owner and a donkey recognizes its master’s care, yet His people, who are called by His name, created in His image, promised life eternal with Him, yet we ignore the lovely name of Jesus, and many totally reject the Lord. It’s no wonder Jesus said that because we are lukewarm and because we reject Him, He would spew us out of His mouth. Friends, I don’t know about you, but I can’t begin to think about hearing the words, “depart from me you doers of iniquity, I never knew you”. My life is committed to living according to the teachings and commands of Jesus. I am determined to a life of dedication to my Master, Creator, Friend and soon coming King. How about you friend? Do you know Jesus in a very personal way today? Have you surrendered your will and life to Him? Will you be proud to meet Him on the day He calls you out of this world? Please contact me if there is any need for prayer or counsel in this regard by using the link below.

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

Lord Jesus, thank You for making a way for me to one day be with You in glory! I want to also say thank You for providing daily help for me to face the trials and temptation of this world. I pray for continued strength, guidance and wisdom each and every day so that my walk and my talk will be pleasing to You and representative of You in every way. Please touch the heart of those that may read this devotional. Open their eyes to see their weaknesses in following You in accordance with Your instructions. Draw them to You and help them to make decisions today that may affect their eternity with You. May I be careful to recognize You in every walk of my life, and may I allow You to impact my life and my walk in ways that will please You and represent You in every way.

 

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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Unconditional Commitment

June 21, 2012

Scripture: 2 Thessalonians 3.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Thessalonians 3:11-13 (NLT)

11 Yet we hear that some of you are living idle lives, refusing to work and meddling in other people’s business.

12 We command such people and urge them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and work to earn their own living.

13 As for the rest of you, dear brothers and sisters, never get tired of doing good.

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

I have heard statistics that reveal: 20% of the people do 80% of the work in a church. Paul saw this same issue in the early church and he ‘hit the nail on the head’ with what he suspected the 80% were wasting their time doing – meddling in other people’s business. This may even sound funny to us today, but before we comment on it to anyone, let’s stop and think about what our current church must be doing, you know – the inactive members. If they show up to church at all, they sit and watch to gather enough to hit the gossip charts, and the complaint headlines and the excuses that may serve to avoid their involvement. I believe that we can easily see where this sector of the congregation will tear down/hold back/prevent the growth of the Kingdom. The unfortunate part of this whole thing is that the 20% who do most of the work often fall into the trap of feeling overwhelmed and/or superior to the others and then they begin to gossip and tear down. I could easily see where this would have frustrated Paul, and I could also see where pastors today might become despondent over these same frustrations. I feel like this all boils down to our total commitment to the Lord. When we have promised God that as a result of Him saving us and giving us eternal life with Him in heaven, we will faithfully serve Him all the remaining days of our lives, then we should consider that to be unconditional and not dependent on the efforts of others around us, or the lack of their efforts. It is so vital for us to share the gospel with others. The same gospel that saved us. Join me in recommitting ourselves to doing that unconditionally.

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

Lord, please direct Your people today to lead lives that are indicative of You, and help us to do that regardless of the efforts or attitudes of others. Lord, I long to see You and I pray that until that day, You use me to promote the name of Jesus and share Your love with all that I come into contact with. All for the glory of Christ!

 

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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‘Love’ Defined for Husbands

June 20, 2012

Scripture: Ephesians 5.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Ephesians 5:25-28 (NLT)

25 For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her

26 to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.

27 He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault.

28 In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself.

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

During my study for a Father’s Day Bible Study lesson that I taught, it was revealed to me that just as Jesus loved the church so much that He died for it to make it holy so that He could present it to the Father without spot or wrinkle, so husbands are told to treat their wives. Men, I believe that God is saying to us that we must take our responsibilities seriously as husbands and as fathers. So much so that when we are called to Him in glory, we could present our wife and family to Him with pride, in saying that we have done all within our power, and in the power of prayer, to present them to God without spot or wrinkle and in all holiness before Him. In a recent podcast that I listened to, I was reminded that I am the pastor of my household and must take that responsibility very serious for my ‘church members’ are looking to me for spiritual leadership, Godly advice and direction. This should be to the extent that I can stand before Christ and boldly present them to Him feeling accomplished in all that He has commanded of me as their spiritual leader. Men, we must be the kind of men that God designed us to be and expects us to be. This is the only way that we will ever slow the stem of broken homes and injured families that are so evident today. Won’t you join me in this?

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

Father, You have demanded a whole lot from us as men, but let me quick to also say that I believe that You have given us a whole lot and directed us in ways that we could accomplish the tasks laid out for us. As I place my faith and trust in You today, I pray that You will reassure me of Your presence, Your power and Your direction. I realize that I can do nothing in my own power, conversely, I can do ALL things through You who strengthens me! Praise the name of Jesus!

 

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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Fear and Obey God

June 19, 2012

Scripture: Ecclesiastes 12.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 (NLT)

13 That’s the whole story. Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty.

14 God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.

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

The book of Ecclesiastes cannot be interpreted correctly without reading these final verses. No matter what the mysteries and apparent contradictions of life are, we must work toward the single purpose of knowing God. In Ecclesiastes, Solomon shows us that we should enjoy life, but this does not exempt us from obeying God’s commands. We should search for purpose and meaning in life, but they cannot be found in human endeavors. We should acknowledge the evil, foolishness, and injustice in life yet maintain a positive attitude and strong faith in God.

All people will have to stand before God and be judged for what they have done in this life. We will not be able to use the inequities of life as an excuse for failing to live properly. We need to:

  1. Recognize that human effort apart from God is futile,
  2. Put God first—now and throughout our life span,
  3. Receive everything good as a gift from God, and
  4. Realize that God will judge every person’s life, whether good or evil.

How strange that people spend their lives striving for the joy that God gives freely.

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

Thank You Father for creating wise saints like Solomon! Thank You for giving him the wisdom shared with us in Your Word, and especially these parting words at the end of Ecclesiastes. After all of the wise sayings and advice given by Solomon, yet he pulled us back in to help us realize that the only thing that really matters is that we love and respect You, as our Creator, and obey all that You have taught us in Your Word. Father, I pray that Your words will resonate in every decision that I make and every discourse that I may have. Not for any credit of my own, but that You may be glorified in and through me. Please use me as Your instrument to touch a life today!

 

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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Is God Being Honored by the Way You Live?

June 18, 2012

Scripture: 2 Thessalonians 1.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 (NLT)

11 So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do.

12
Then the name of our Lord Jesus will be honored because of the way you live, and you will be honored along with him. This is all made possible because of the grace of our God and our Lord Jesus Christ.

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

I believe that the ultimate achievement that any of us can desire is to live our lives pleasing to God and that He would be honored because of the way we live. However, as we consider this we realize that He is perfect, and that we are far from being perfect. Notice that Paul, Silas and Timothy promised that they were all praying for their church members to live such lives with anticipation of God enabling them to live such lives. Often we get so hung up on praying for medical conditions of our brothers and sisters that we seldom stop to pray for their spiritual wellbeing, unless we notice something very obvious going on in their lives. Notice also that for us to live holy lives that represent the Savior, we must not forget where the power source is for such a desirable objective. In verse 11 it is very plain that it takes God enabling us to live such holy lives. While the results of living such lives might obviously be to encourage others to live similar lives or even provoke them into asking about the source of our strength to live such lives, I was encouraged by the words in the middle of verse 12 – that in living such a life honoring to the Lord Jesus, that I might be also be honored with Him. Wow, imagine hearing God honor His Son, and in the same breath honor one of us for also living a life pleasing to Him? I can hardly imagine that! Let’s not forget friends, we live our lives pleasing to God so that He might receive glory and honor, not that we might get puffed up. Do it for Him!

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

Lord Jesus, You know better than I do how challenging it is to live a holy life here on this earth. Thank You for reminding me this morning of the power source that would enable me to meet such a desirable feat. Please glorify yourself through my actions that lift up the name of Jesus. Please enable me to overcome the weaknesses of this earthly life and give me strength, wisdom and fortitude to pursue righteousness and holiness in all that I attempt to do. Lord, may You receive honor and glory through my actions today!

 

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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Guidelines for Holy Living

June 14, 2012

Scripture: 1 Thessalonians 5.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

1 Thessalonians 5:12-22 (NLT)

12 Dear brothers and sisters, honor those who are your leaders in the Lord’s work. They work hard among you and give you spiritual guidance.

13 Show them great respect and wholehearted love because of their work. And live peacefully with each other.

14 Brothers and sisters, we urge you to warn those who are lazy. Encourage those who are timid. Take tender care of those who are weak. Be patient with everyone.

15 See that no one pays back evil for evil, but always try to do good to each other and to all people.

16 Always be joyful.

17 Never stop praying.

18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

19 Do not stifle the Holy Spirit.

20 Do not scoff at prophecies,

21 but test everything that is said. Hold on to what is good.

22 Stay away from every kind of evil.

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

I believe that the love Paul had for the church at Thessalonica is very evident in what he shared and commanded with them, especially in these few verses. The lessons we are to learn from this is that because God ordained this to be included in His Holy Word, then He obviously wanted His children from all future generations to also pay particular attentions to these words, and obey the direction given to the Thessalonians. While I don’t feel the need to repeat what is already spoken in the verses above, I would encourage all that share in this devotional with me, to give particular attention to each of these items. Let’s make them into a list, to remind us of what is expected of us. Think about it: for us to be successful in our secular jobs, we ask for a job description. We then do our very best to follow those job responsibilities and we are graded on our performance to see if we are worthy of the calling for which we were hired. I am reminded today that one day there will be accountability with God also. Like any successful person will do all within their power to accomplish raving reviews of their performance. With God’s help and direction, I long to hear the words from my Father “Well done good and faithful servant”. Will you join me in this endeavor? Contact me if you would like to join hearts and hands in this effort so that we may encourage one another along this path of life!

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

Thank You Father for Your Holy Word. I have truly been blessed with direction this morning and feel reminded of my responsibility as a child of the King at to what You would have me do today and every day in order to be the ‘Jesus-like’ example in this world. Please give me strength, boldness and the guidance to be this kind of witness. May I represent You well in my walk, in my talk and in my actions Dear 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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Life – A Gift From God

June 13, 2012

Scripture: Ecclesiastes 5.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 (NLT)

18 Even so, I have noticed one thing, at least, that is good. It is good for people to eat, drink, and enjoy their work under the sun during the short life God has given them, and to accept their lot in life.

19 And it is a good thing to receive wealth from God and the good health to enjoy it. To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life—this is indeed a gift from God.

20 God keeps such people so busy enjoying life that they take no time to brood over the past.

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

Way too often we go through this life with such a burden that we reflect back on time and all we can remember or see are the hard times, the sad times, the embarrassing times, etc, etc. Friends, please allow me to remind you today that every day that you are blessed to open your eyes, there are blessings to praise God for. I might have a broken leg, but praise to God Almighty, I have one good leg and all other parts in tact that I can thank Him for. I may despise the job that I have (and I don’t) but when I consider the many that are jobless today and wishing they could keep up with their bills and provide for their families, I MUST praise God for His faithfulness to me. Am I somebody special that God should bless me so? Like you, I am a design of God, and I am one of the many that He loved so much that He allowed His precious Son, Jesus, to die on a cross so that I might have the means of reuniting with Him in glory when this old life fades away here on earth. Yes, He loves me today and I am so thankful for that! Friends, no matter your circumstances, God loves you too! Surrender your will to Him today and allow Him to guide, protect and love you unconditionally!

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

Father, thank You for loving even me. Thank You for not just promising me a life in heaven with You, but for blessing me with so much to enjoy each and every day while here on this earth. May I freely allow Your blessings to flow through me to bless others that I come into contact with!

 

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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