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

Archive for May, 2014

Live According To The Hope Within!

God’s Word Says….

Acts 24:15-16 (NCV)
15 I have the same hope in God that they have—the hope that all people, good and bad, will surely be raised from the dead. 16 This is why I always try to do what I believe is right before God and people.

My Thoughts…..
There are several things worth noting in the passage surrounding these verses highlighted today:
Paul was being presented before the governor (Felix) on charges that he was inciting the people and causing an uproar in the temple and the town. The easiest and safest thing for Paul to have done, was to either keep quiet to avoid further incrimination, or to blast out against his opposers. Instead, Paul chose to use this public forum to further speak the Word of God and so that these hearers, who under normal circumstances may not have visited the temple, would know of the hope that lies within him! Wow, commendable!
Paul had no regrets. If Felix demanded his death, like Tertullus wanted, Paul knew that his conscience would be clear and that he could stand before Jesus without guilt and embarrassment.

Challenge……
How is it with us, friend? Are we consistent with our testimony? Our witness? Our teaching? Our preaching? Can we truly share the Word in an open setting without the worry of fingers being pointed back at our actions on the same subject? Can we stand before God, the One who knows and sees all things, and face Him with without embarrassment that we lived the life He demanded in His Word, and that we honestly shared the Word openly and without guilt ourselves? I know we are not perfect, especially as long as we live here on planet earth, but the question today is “Do we live our lives according to the blessed hope that we possess?” I believe that opposition to what Paul was claiming would have been lies by his openents/accusers. Would we be as confident about the same scenario friend?

Prayer……
Lord Jesus, I pray that I would live my life in total honesty to You, and before all my family and friends. I pray that what they see is exactly what You know to be the case also. Please help me to avoid pretense. Like Paul, may I live, and may I present myself before You with no regrets or embarassment. Please also touch the heart of my friends that might meditate on this devotional so that they too may present themselves before You without regret. May we be the image and voice of You dear Lord to this evil and lost world in which we live. Father, all this is only possible through Your intervention, grace and power, so I ask this in Your awesome name and for Your glory, AMEN!

Action…..
In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

Where Can we search for wisdom?

In the whole chapter of Job 28, Job gives examples of where people might search for wisdom. However, beginning in verse 23 he gets to the point of where most people are today. For most of us have exhausted our efforts in finding wisdom, before we look to the creator of everything that exists, the One who gives undiluted wisdom, God almighty. Friends, we can save so much time, and avoid so many heartbreaks, if only we would look to the Creator for ALL things in life. Let’s acknowledge Him as Lord over everything in our lives, for He created us and has given us everything we need for life and everyday living. We owe it ALL to God. Wisdom is something we all should desire, so let us go to the root of wisdom and ask for it in its purest form. Why waste your time looking in such areas as described by Job in the first part of this chapter? Ask for it straight from its source! Praise God that I know Him personally and can ask anything of Him. Do you, friend?

Job 28:23–28 (NCV)
Only God understands the way to wisdom, and he alone knows where it lives, because he looks to the farthest parts of the earth and sees everything under the sky. When God gave power to the wind and measured the water, when he made rules for the rain and set a path for a thunderstorm to follow, then he looked at wisdom and decided its worth; he set wisdom up and tested it. Then he said to humans, ‘The fear of the Lord is wisdom; to stay away from evil is understanding.’ ”

Feel free to contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com if you would like for me to pray for you, or if I might introduce you to the God of whom I referenced above. It would be my joy!

For Conscience Not To Be Affected

God’s Word Says….

Job 27:2-6 (NCV)

“As surely as God lives, who has taken away my rights, the Almighty, who has made me unhappy, 3 as long as I am alive and God’s breath of life is in my nose, my lips will not speak evil, and my tongue will not tell a lie. I will never agree you are right; until I die, I will never stop saying I am innocent. I will insist that I am right; I will not back down. My conscience will never bother me.

My Thoughts…..

If only we would have the determination of Job! After all he had been through, and even after being upset with God for allowing so much to happen to him, yet in verses 4-6 he proclaimed that he would never turn his back on God. He was so sure of himself that he said, hey, my conscience will never bother me – not even before God who knows all things. What a bold statement! Can we begin to imagine that type of loyalty, and how that type of determination and persistence could have a major impact on our churches? Imagine the members who might say that no matter what may come our way, our minds are made up and we will not falter? Wow, if our churches were made up of only 10% of men with that type determination, I can hardly imagine the impact the ministry of that church would have on our community. It is so unfortunate that anytime we hear reference to a church, we hear about the beautiful building, or the great pastor (orator), or the food ministry or possibly its effective Bible teaching, but how often do we hear someone actually refer to the ‘church’ itself? In other words, the ‘church’ is its members and attendees, so how often do we hear “oh do you mean that church located at ???? where so many of its members are filled with God’s Holy Spirit and its ministry is so impactful that you feel God working on you as you enter the church doors?” Unfortunately we tend to hear more of the opposite – “you mean that church with all those hypocrites?”

Challenge……

While I would never want us to undergo the temptations and trials that Job went through, I sure wish that we had the bold determination to live as God’s child right until the end of our lives, regardless of life’s circumstances! How is it with you friend? Can you identify with Job? Would you commit to live your life determined to represent God in all walks of life and through every circumstance of life before Christians and those who have no knowledge of God? I believe that we will see our world change when they see a changed church – people that really represent God at all times and in every circumstance of life. You alone can do this, and you can only change yourself. Don’t worry about the Brother next to you, although pray for him. Leave that Sister alone with her sinful actions, get yourself in order and let your life for Christ impact her. Get yourself in order, and pray consistently and persistently for others.

Prayer……

Lord, I plead with you to help me be so determined in my walk that I would have the kind of clear conscience that Job spoke about in verse 6! Lord, I believe this could have a serious impact on our churches, if only we could be the type of persistent Christian that Job was. Please deal in my heart as I may tend to waiver from that, and please work on the hearts and lives of those that claim You as their Lord. May we commit to serve You, in spite of our circumstances. For I ask all this in Your precious and holy name, Lord Jesus, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

The Awesome Power of My God!

God’s Word Says….

Job 26:7&14 (NCV)

God stretches the northern sky out over empty space and hangs the earth on nothing.

14 And these are only a small part of God’s works. We only hear a small whisper of him. Who could understand God’s thundering power?

My Thoughts…..

As we meditate on these verses, I want to remind you that this is Job speaking to one of his encouragers! For he had been beaten up on and robbed of everything by Satan, yet he knew deep inside that no matter what happened to the flesh, his God still loved him and cared for him! Wow! In fact, although I only chose to show two verses, the whole chapter of 14 verses are filled with the many praises of Job! He showed us that no matter what earthly trials come our way, let us never lose sight of the mighty hand of God, whose love constantly abides within us and is available to us.

Challenge……

Wow, what an example for those of us that whine and complain our whole day. We just have to look outside of our personal problems, many of which we have brought on ourselves. Instead, we have to look for the ways that God has provided for us, especially when we see so many needy around us. We have to thank God for the good health we enjoy, especially when we look at the number in our hospitals and the numerous sick people who are much worse off than we are. We must remind ourselves of the serious need for diet in our lives, while we reflect on the number of persons that go to bed hungry worldwide. We have so much to be thankful for that it would take much more than 14 verses to truly reflect our praises. So much to be thankful for, that we should never have time to complain! We should express so much praise from our thankful hearts that others who truly have needs would be encouraged by just listening to our praises, and there would be ample proof to those praying for sincere needs in their life that they would pray in renewed confidence, knowing that they are praying to a God who cares and loves them, as much as we are constantly bragging about. God is truly, extremely good to us friend!

Prayer……

Lord Jesus, I praise You this morning for who you are! Not just someone I have read about, although I have read the praises of Job, but I too can testify of Your love and goodness towards me! Not just for the love that I read about, or that the pastor preached about, but for the genuine love that I feel deep inside when reminded of the sacrifice that You made for mankind (especially myself) when You hung on that cruel cross at Calvary, with all the power to totally reverse the scene, but yet You chose to show Your love towards all mankind, by suffering under the hands of those You were dying for. Please forgive me Lord for my ungrateful spirit. Please help me to always look for the ways You have blessed, and still are blessing, and that I might exalt You for Your active role in all these things. You have created us with a free choice, please always remind us that we have a choice to praise You or to complain. I pray that we will always make the right choice to praise You in our storms of life, and let You control and help us to overcome the difficulties. I ask all this in Your loving and wonderful name Lord Jesus, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

God’s Reassurance!

God’s Word Says….

Acts 23:10-12 (NCV)

10 The argument was beginning to turn into such a fight that the commander was afraid some evil people would tear Paul to pieces. So he told the soldiers to go down and take Paul away and put him in the army building.

11 The next night the Lord came and stood by Paul. He said, “Be brave! You have told people in Jerusalem about me. You must do the same in Rome.”

12 In the morning some evil people made a plan to kill Paul, and they took an oath not to eat or drink anything until they had killed him.

My Thoughts…..

Have you ever been in doubt about whether you were doing God’s will, when suddenly you receive a revelation, or confirmation that you are sure came from God? This is what happened to Paul. His very life was threatened because of his honest words before the Sadducees and Pharisees. The commander saw this coming, so he locked Paul up, for his own protection. However, this gave the people more time to plan a strategy that would lead to murdering Paul. As for Paul though, the Lord came and stood by Paul’s side that night in captivity and reassured him of the next phase of his ministry. Now, did the Lord know what the evil ones was conjuring up in their minds, and their subsequent plans for the next day? Of course He knew, and therefore felt it was imperative to visit with Paul to comfort him (for He stood by Paul’s side), and to give reassurance about his next steps. Was it coincidence that this occurred the night before Paul’s nephew would run to him and tell him about a plot to kill him? Of course not, this was deliberate especially because of the next day’s expectation. Paul then knew that in spite of what the world had planned to do with him, God’s will would be accomplished.

Challenge……

Wow, to imagine that we have that same reassurance as Paul was given! Why do we fear? Why do we worry? Why do we take the concerns of this world on our shoulders? God is in control, no matter what the world or its leaders may have in mind! What a peace is ours dear friends! I plead with you that you join me in building this type relationship with our Savior, that no matter how dismal a situation may seem, be reassured that God is on your side and will accomplish His will in and/or through you. Although I believe that God wants to hear from His children on the desires of their heart, I believe that He is even more interested that we relax and allow Him to be God in our lives and in all of life’s situations. Have you ever stopped and said to yourself, “well I don’t know where to go from here, for I have done everything I know to do”? It is often times like that when we throw our hands up and turn a situation over to God, isn’t it? I believe this lesson is teaching us to allow God in on the very ground level, and if things are about to get out of control, at least in our minds, that God would whisper reassurance to us. In what form might this come today? Friends, our communication lines today are just as they were in Paul’s day. Stay in close communion with God through His Word (the Bible), through prayer, and close communion and fellowship with other believers. Remember that old song, “God will make a way, where there seems to be no way”? Remind yourself of that when you have done all that He demands of you. Friend, let Him be God!

Prayer……

Lord Jesus, how reassuring to know that You are by my side, when life appears to be a daily joy, and when I struggle to see how tomorrow could possibly be any worse than today. You have shown Your presence in so many ways through so many situations in my life already, and You have always come through in so many ways for me. I pray that I might be quick to realize this when Your will may sometime be in opposition to what I envision for me. I pray that I might always be open to, and accepting of, Your will for me, regardless of my plans and my desires. Friends meditation on this devotional with me might be challenged with a day or night of frustration where life here on this earth appears impossible, and especially in their area of ministry. Please stand by their side today, as You did for Paul, and encourage them. Nudge them on their way and show them hope in all that You would have them do for You here on planet earth. Continue to accomplish great things in and through Your willing servants today, is my humble pray that I ask in the precious name of Jesus, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

Live With The End In Mind!

God’s Word Says….

Acts 23:1 (NCV)

Paul looked at the council and said, “Brothers, I have lived my life without guilt feelings before God up to this day”.

My Thoughts…..

Sometimes we may feel like we could get away with saying something like Paul did in the above verse when we appeared before Ananias and the chief priests, but we may select our audience, because we know that our best friend, or spouse, or parent(s) may know us too well, so we would never be bold enough to say it in front of them, for fear of correction. Friends, let us never forget that God knows every little detail about our actions and even our thoughts, so we can’t fool Him. In our church service yesterday we meditated on a verse that offered a similar challenge: 1 John 2:28 “Yes, my children, remain in union with him, so that when he appears we may be full of courage and need not hide in shame from him on the Day he comes”. (GNT).

Challenge……

I believe that this helps me to understand that the more we feel that we can share the truth contained in our highlighted verse today with family and friends, the more comfortable we will feel when we stand before Jesus! In other words, I am reminded that my life actions are an open book to my Lord every day, so I had best seek His guidance daily and ask for strength and wisdom to always do His will, so that I may always live with the end in mind. Our goal is to be ‘little Christs’. Are you on target friend?

Prayer……

Lord Jesus, You are the creator and designer of this earth and all that is upon it. You have also created our future home – a place called Heaven, where we will live eternally with You. Lord, I praise You for watching out for us in such wonderful ways, thank You! I am reminded that our testing days are here on this earth where we are expected to live as You lived. While we go about our way living the ‘good life’, please help us to be ever mindful that we can’t fool You, for You know our every action and our thoughts, so You know what reaction we will have to certain events and the, sometimes, stupid stuff that we say. Please help us to be great examples of Yours, so that You may impact the hearts of those that we come into contact with, for Your glory and Your honor. Lord, may we be Your honorable servants, willing to follow Your commands and do Your will while here on this earth. There is coming a day when we will meet You face to face, Lord, may You proudly proclaim, “Well done good and faithful servant”. This is only possible through You oh Lord, so I ask this in Your precious name and for Your sake alone, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

Careful How You Judge Others!

God’s Word Says….

Job 22:21-22 (NCV)

21 “Obey God and be at peace with him; this is the way to happiness. 22 Accept teaching from his mouth, and keep his words in your heart. 23 If you return to the Almighty, you will be blessed again.

My Thoughts…..

In these verses, one of Jobs friends who came to comfort Job, listened to Job’s ramblings and feeling sorry for himself, then responded as if Job didn’t know the Lord, and perhaps that was the reason for all these bad things happening to him. Similarly, our friends and onlookers will jump to their own conclusions as to why certain things are happening to us. We’ve heard it before: it’s because of the evil they allowed in their lives in their younger day, or it’s because of the sin of their parents, or they have even more punishment to look forward to in response to all the evil things they have done in their lives, etc. Friends, the point is, that God can correct and test us at any time He sees fit to do it. Who are we to question the creator and sustainer of this universe? I heard someone say recently, that God will have to turn up the heat even more on a certain individual in order to get their attention focused on Him. Job was a true man of God, but God allowed Satan to test Job in order to quiet Satan down and to once again show him who is in control. Job had proven himself over and over again, but in using Job in this way, I believe God also knew that the extra testing would only strengthen Job’s faith and draw him closer to God.

Challenge……

Instead of judging others as to what may have caused God to lift His hand of protection and love from them, think about praying for the individual and encouraging the individual. Remember, judging and gossiping are not two of the gifts of the Spirit! Use your gifts to do as I suggested above. I believe you will be blessed and better prepared to handle similar situations in your life, should they occur, plus it will help the individual overcome the many evil thoughts that may come to mind while undergoing these things. Jesus was tempted and tried, won’t we? I believe we can bank on it. Like a long distance runner that strengthens their chance of winning by exercising daily, we must daily strengthen our relationship with God through meditating on God’s Word; prayer and keeping ourselves better aligned with the Savior that we are to imitate every day. When we build this strength, we will be able to handle the tough times, because we will depend on God – just like we did in the best times.

Prayer……

Lord Jesus, in Your precious name, I ask that You would bless us with Your power, strength and wisdom to handle the challenging times in our lives much like You did, and in the humbleness and boldness that Job did. When we see friends going through these types of scenarios, please help us to pray, and then follow the commands You may lay upon our hearts. My desire is to please You in all that I say or do, and that’s a tall order in these challenging and sinful times in which I live, but mighty Savior I know that You can do ALL things, so I ask this in Your precious Name and for Your glory. Knowing how easily I could find myself in similar situations as Job encountered, may I always be understanding and empathize with a Brother who may have a Job experience, or a Sister who just feels like throwing in the towel because of scenarios much like Job’s. I am reminded that You, being in control of this world and my circumstances, really means not only in all the good times, but also in those that may seem unpleasant to me. Having some health issues recently has really opened my eyes to recognize how insignificant my problems are, when compared to the enormous challenges that friends are encountering every day because of their ill health. Lord Jesus, again I ask that You always work on me and prepare me to be more like You every day in every area of my life, and may my friends meditating on this devotional today have similar personal desires, and Your subsequent responses to them, so that Your army might be best prepared to handle this world with its many challenges to our faith. Please grant this for Your glory and in accordance with Your holy will, for it is in Your name that I ask, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.

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