You Know One Is ‘Religious’ When….

Thursday, 2017-06-30 Scripture Bible Reference: Acts 17:22–23 Bible Text:  22 So Paul, standing before the council, addressed them as follows: “Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, 23 for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an […]

Friday, 2017-06-30

Scripture

Bible Reference: Acts 17:22–23

Bible Text:  22 So Paul, standing before the council, addressed them as follows: “Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, 23 for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an Unknown God.’

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

If you walked into a young man’s bedroom, and he had the walls plastered with large posters of young ladies, some dressed and some barely clothed in a swim suit, might you conclude that the young man is a true ladies’ man, or that he is a good, loyal, faithful husband? How about if this was a young man from your Sunday School class, would you be more, or less convinced that he is a religious person? If you met a store clerk who wore a cross on her chain and appeared to have a great attitude, might you conclude that she was a very religious young lady? How about when you walk into a church on the weekend and see hundreds of attendees, surely they are religious, right? Friends, Paul had to address this misconception of acting ‘religious’ as it could mislead someone into believing that they are a born-again Christian. I believe that the Holy Spirit prompted me to remind this audience that there is only one way by which you are saved, and the only way into heaven is when God is convinced that you are saved. The one way that you are saved is by getting before the Lord Jesus Christ, asking for His forgiveness of your sin, and inviting Him to take charge of your life – total surrender on your part. This is totally scriptural and can be supported by scripture, so it is gospel truth. Somehow, I believe you may have concluded that none of what I have described to you above, matches the biblical description of what a Christian is, or acts like. However, they may sound like the individuals may be ‘religions’, at least in the eyes of some, right? Friends, your connection to the Master of the Universe, and your personal relationship with Him, matters first of all to the Master, then you, then should be obvious to all those you come into contact with. Acting, or pretending to be religious, may very well come across to your friends as you trying to be something that you’re not. When your relationship with Christ is in order, there will be something about your life that others will immediately recognize, without you saying a word, or acting any differently. When the Holy Spirit resides inside of you and works in and through you, your whole demeanor will change and others will see and believe! Please don’t get me wrong friends. I am not saved to prove anything to my friends who truly love me, but because I am saved they can tell from the life I live and the hope that is evident in my character, that I have a hope, I have a future, and it is in heaven with my precious Lord and Savior. Would you please put your mind at ease, and the concern of your friends and family, by seeking out Jesus today? Enough with trying to be ‘religious’. Seek the face of Jesus, look full in to His wonderful eyes, and the things of this world will grow strangely dim!

Prayer

Father God, You are so awesome that You not only created us and gave us a very successful life to enjoy here on earth, but You went a step further by providing the means for us to be assured today about our future with You. Although not automatic, yet You knew that it was not something that we could attain on our own, so You provided Your Son as a living sacrifice for our sin. So that through Him, we might become sons and daughters of the most high! Thank You for loving me with such passion and grace! Thank You for assuring me that it’s OK to share this message with friends who can make the same decision as I did, so that they too might be assured of their salvation. Lord, may this be the day of decision for all who reads this devotional. 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. Allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

A Changed Heart

It was becoming quite a popular thing for people to go down to the river and be baptized by John the Baptist, and John quickly recognized that it was becoming quite the popular thing for folk to do in following the crowd. John felt an obligation to Jesus Christ to make sure that this was not becoming a popularity thing but rather one that followed the teachings of Jesus. We will explore how applicable this is to us today….

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-06-29
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 3:7-9 (MSG)

Text:

7-9 When crowds of people came out for baptism because it was the popular thing to do, John exploded: “Brood of snakes! What do you think you’re doing slithering down here to the river? Do you think a little water on your snakeskins is going to deflect God’s judgment? It’s your life that must change, not your skin. And don’t think you can pull rank by claiming Abraham as ‘father.’ Being a child of Abraham is neither here nor there—children of Abraham are a dime a dozen. God can make children from stones if he wants. What counts is your life. Is it green and blossoming? Because if it’s deadwood, it goes on the fire.”
OBSERVATION:
It was becoming quite a popular thing for people to go down to the river and be baptized by John the Baptist, and John quickly recognized that it was becoming quite the popular thing for folk to do in following the crowd. John felt an obligation to Jesus Christ to make sure that this was not becoming a popularity thing but rather one that followed the teachings of Jesus. We will explore how applicable this is to us today….
APPLICATION:
As a very young child, my daughter saw a friend baptized, and for weeks afterwards she tried to convince her mom and I on why she should be baptized. I believe that there may be lots of younger people that want the attention of parents, Bible School teachers and  friends, or they may run to the pastor without fully understanding the purpose of baptism. There are others that are willing to take this step as a way to get mom, spouse, or perhaps a friend who had been witnessing to them, off their back. In our Scripture reading today we can see how John addressed this, and I’m sure we could follow his example on how to handle similar questions by others. However, we must feel comfortable sharing this in our own words. May I encourage you to click on the Scripture link above and read what Paul taught on this? The main emphasis is that the prospective candidate can clearly tell you how they were Spiritually saved, and also how Jesus has changed their way of living, because now they are about to show witness to the church at large and the world, that there has been a mega change in their life since inviting Jesus to be their Lord and Savior. The candidate must know clearly that baptism has no saving grace, but is scriptural because it demonstrates to the world an inward decision that you made at some point in your life. Friends, in following the commands of Jesus, I pray that you will demonstrate a full understanding of what He demands of you in His Word and not just follow the crowd as the popular thing to do, otherwise God may send another ‘John’ to rebuke you, like he did in this scripture. I encourage you to be brave in declaring to the world that you are a child of the King and that you don’t mind anyone knowing that. Being ashamed of the Lord here on earth might be reason for Jesus to disclaim you before His Father, according to His words in Scripture. If you haven’t surrendered your life to Jesus, then baptism is a mockery to the church and you are telling the world a lie. However, baptism is encouraged for those who have sincerely surrendered their heart and life to Jesus. 
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, You know how much we love baptismal services, because as a church, we celebrate with the candidates the decisions that have been made, and the miraculous change that God has made in their lives! It re-enforces the necessity for the church and personal evangelism. It confirms Your work dear Lord, because only You could truly touch and change broken and sinful lives. May we continue to be about Your work oh Lord, and may You continue to touch the hearts of those that are in need of a Savior. We long to celebrate baptism often as a means of celebrating the wondrous works of our Lord. To You we give hearts filled with glory, honor and praise for all that You do in the center of our family, friends and loved ones. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Jesus – Our ROCK!

It seems very evident that the Psalmist spent some valuable time alone with God. It is also evident that David experienced very intimate times with God, that helped him to conclude that God had not only saved him, but been his rescuer, defender and his very fortress. I am convinced that we serve an awesome God!

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-06-28
SCRIPTURE

From:

Psalm 62:1-2 (TLB)

Text:

1 I stand silently before the Lord, waiting for him to rescue me. For salvation comes from him alone. Yes, he alone is my Rock, my rescuer, defense and fortress. Why then should I be tense with fear when troubles come?
OBSERVATION:
It seems very evident that the Psalmist spent some valuable time alone with God. It is also evident that David experienced very intimate times with God, that helped him to conclude that God had not only saved him, but been his rescuer, defender and his very fortress. I am convinced that we serve an awesome God!
APPLICATION:
Based on our personal experiences with God, I wonder what words we might use to describe our God. Let’s look deeper at the adjectives of David and decide whether we have witnessed any of these same characteristics of God in our lives:

  • Our salvation: Can you thank God for the salvation that you found through the precious gift of Jesus – our Savior and our Redeemer? There is no other way into heaven than through the shed blood of Jesus, my friend. How often do you thank Him for that precious gift, and brag on it before others, as David did in these verses?
  • Our Rock: Solid; impenetrable; immovable; dependable; will not give in or crumble under extreme weight or pressure – these are some of the words that can be used to describe a rock. David described God as his ‘Rock’ because he had seen many of these characteristics and strengths in his relationship with God. Can you add to that list friends? Would you remove any of the same attributes mentioned by David, because you have not experienced them in your relationship with God yet?
  • Our Rescuer: This makes me think of times that one has been in deep trouble and have been noticeably rescued from that trouble because of prayers asked of God to pull you to safety. Having a personal relationship with the God of this universe, means that He can rescue you even when it may seem hopeless in your own eyes. Remember, He’s the one who walked on water; parted the Red Sea for His people to walk safely through and performed miracle after miracle in the lives of many. Surely He could rescue you from any situation you may have gotten into!
  • Our Defender: I tend to think of someone who will defend against those intending to harm us. Our primary worry here on earth is Satan, for his intentions are simply to distract us, and lead us away, from God. In knowing Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we can agree with David on this one, because our God will defend us from the evil one (lead us not into temptation), and deliver us from evil. Asl Jesus to do this, child of God. Then be ready to brag on Him as your Defender, just like David did!
  • Our Fortress: In the Bahamas, and here in Florida, we can find forts that were built to help our ancestors defend against invaders. The walls are several feet thick in some places, and were built to keep our soldiers safe from even an incoming cannon ball. So when the enemy was approaching, they all went to their ‘fortress’. I believe that’s about how David felt, and I believe that’s about how we should feel. In our case, the enemy is waiting to attack every time we turn around, so being safely inside our fortress means that we know the ‘Fortress’ and He knows us and will let us into the safety and security of His loving arms. I trust that today you are very confident in knowing that you can run to the security of your Fortress, safe in the arms of Jesus our Savior and Lord! A stranger knocking on the door of the fortress in the height of battle will not be allowed in, for they personally chose to exclude themselves from that security. Let that not be your case friend. Look full into the eyes of Jesus today and accept His offer to be your Fortress.
PRAYER:
Thank You Father for sending us Your Son to be our Salvation; our Rock; our Rescuer; our Defender; and our Fortress! Lord, I pray that today many will come to the foot of the cross and accept You as Lord and Savior, for all the reasons already mentioned in this devotional. I am proud to know that You accepted my plea for forgiveness and acceptance into Your kingdom, and I thank You from the bottom of my heart for being all of these things mentioned, and much, much more. Lord I look forward to being with You in glory some sweet day, but while allowed to remain here on earth, I ask that You continue to watch over me and lead me to help another beggar looking for bread – the Bread of Life! AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Blessed to Bless Others

It seems like the Psalmist was feeling a sense of despair, but he patiently went before the Lord pleading for help to overcome. In these verses he is celebrating that not only did God see him through his challenging low times, but He placed him at such a solid high point in his life, that he celebrated in what sounded like a new song, from a new heart, because it was coming from a renewed man! This not only brought joy and honor to David, but because of the awesome change in his life, this touched the lives of many others!

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-06-27
SCRIPTURE

From:

Psalm 40:1-3 (GW)

Text:

I waited patiently for the Lord.
    He turned to me and heard my cry for help.
    He pulled me out of a horrible pit,
        out of the mud and clay.
    He set my feet on a rock
        and made my steps secure.
    He placed a new song in my mouth,
        a song of praise to our God.
            Many will see this and worship.
            They will trust the Lord.
OBSERVATION:
It seems like the Psalmist was feeling a sense of despair, but he patiently went before the Lord pleading for help to overcome. In these verses he is celebrating that not only did God see him through his challenging low times, but He placed him at such a solid high point in his life, that he celebrated in what sounded like a new song, from a new heart, because it was coming from a renewed man! This not only brought joy and honor to David, but because of the awesome change in his life, this touched the lives of many others!
APPLICATION:
How often do we feel so despondent, and really down and out? How often do we feel like there is little hope for us, because we feel so low and forgotten by God and friends? The Psalmist teaches us from his experience that we are in no position to demand anything of God, for we are to wait patiently before God. We have to remember that God always answers our prayer, so we need not feel despondent if He does what’s best for us at the time and answer differently than what we might be wanting or expecting. So when we ask of God, let’s remember our manners and always thank God for His love and awesome wisdom in answering right! Friends, if God always answered everything we ask of Him in the way that we demand it, we would be in a heap of trouble, and we would quickly lose value in God because He simply rubber stamped everything we told Him. Remember, His ways are way above ours ways, His knowledge way exceeds ours and even to His thoughts – they are way above ours. He is the creator of everything we touch, see or experience. So our most urgent and impossible requests are but a speck of dirt to Him. Let us therefore go confidently and patiently before the Lord, knowing that He loves us as His very own child, and will answer us at the best time with the very best resolution for us, and that would bring glory to Himself. We are also reminded that as we wait for the Lord, and celebrate His response to our prayers, others will celebrate with us and grow from our experience. I bet you never thought you would be an evangelist as easy as that, did you? Seek to glorify God friends, and watch how it helps others! 
PRAYER:
Precious Lord, we are such impatient and selfish individuals. Please help us to communicate (pray) openly with You about our blessings, our needs and our desires. But Lord, help us as we pray to realize that we are not God, so the reason that we ask is because we admire the wisdom, love and generosity of our awesome God. Please remind us to always ask, and then to be patient as You answer in a way that is perfect for us and that will result in glory to Yourself. Lord, as we are blessed by You, I pray that we will be filled with such celebration that others around us will also be blessed and drawn to You. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Do Not Fear – God’s Got This!

In this chapter Matthew talks about the many fears that people have. He assures us that we only need to fear the One who could destroy both body and soul – God Himself. But the only reason we would have to fear Him is if we have disowned Him here on earth, and pledged our allegiance to other masters who could order our death without giving it a second thought. However, to those who claim Jesus as their Lord, we have nothing to fear! Praise the Lord!

Post Date:

Monday, 2017-06-26
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 10:29-31 (Voice)

Text:

29 Look, if you sold a few sparrows, how much money would you get? A copper coin apiece, perhaps? And yet your Father in heaven knows when those small sparrows fall to the ground. 30-31 You, beloved, are worth so much more than a whole flock of sparrows. God knows everything about you, even the number of hairs on your head. So do not fear.
OBSERVATION:
In this chapter Matthew talks about the many fears that people have. He assures us that we only need to fear the One who could destroy both body and soul – God Himself. But the only reason we would have to fear Him is if we have disowned Him here on earth, and pledged our allegiance to other masters who could order our death without giving it a second thought. However, to those who claim Jesus as their Lord, we have nothing to fear! Praise the Lord!
APPLICATION:
At home we ‘fear’ our parents, because they take care of us and therefore control our lives, and therefore demand our obedience and best behavior. At work we may ‘fear’ our boss, because if we are not obedient to what they ask of us, they could fire us. For those that have no regard for the Lord Jesus Christ, and saw no importance in allowing Him kingship over your earthly lives, your destination is clear and your eternal master is clearly defined in scripture, so you may start to worry now about the effects of Hell and the severity of it’s ruler – Satan. If instead you have chosen to accept the Lord Jesus – my Lord and Savior, as your King, then this very Scripture that’s quoted in this devotional assures us that we have nothing to fear, for He cares for us and has prepared a home in heaven for us where we will spend eternity together with He and His Father – God. Until that time He is intimately involved in our lives, for He knows every little detail about us and will care for us and protect us no matter what we may face. So friends, to know that we have a Savior who loves us beyond anything we could imagine, watches over us through every little detail of life, comforts us when we are down and out, and has our eternal home prepared for our homecoming, what is there to fear? May I encourage you to give thanks in all things, knowing that our Father, who knows ALL things, has a plan already worked out for us. We serve an awesome God friends! Let us worship Him and thank Him for His mighty works and His preparations for us, even while we still have breath to do so!
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, thank You for the hope of eternity and also for the assurance of Your love and care for us while still here on this earth. Please touch the hearts of Your people today Lord, may they be reminded that there is nothing to fear when they have placed their faith and trust in You. Lord, may this also speak to the hearts of those who have yet to surrender their lives to You, for they have yet to experience the lack of fear in knowing that You have everything under control for those who have entrusted their lives wholeheartedly to You. Thank You Lord for being my Savior, My Lord, and my soon coming King. Whom then shall I fear, when You are on my side? There is none like You heavenly Father, and I thank You for that assurance today, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Our Hope is in The Lord

The Psalmist had just come through a very upsetting time where, had it not been for losing his witness in the presence of the wicked, he probably would have exploded. It was at this point that he asked God to please open his mind and his understanding about what is really important in life. He went through multiple thoughts about what humans consider important, but it all boiled down to a strong relationship with the Master, because it was the only hope that resulted in strength, stability and any sort of meaningful eternity with any sort of hope. 

Post Date:

Saturday, 2017-06-24
SCRIPTURE

From:

Psalm 39:3-7 (TLB)

Text:

…. Then at last I spoke and pled with God: Lord, help me to realize how brief my time on earth will be. Help me to know that I am here for but a moment more. 5-6 My life is no longer than my hand! My whole lifetime is but a moment to you. Proud man! Frail as breath! A shadow! And all his busy rushing ends in nothing. He heaps up riches for someone else to spend. And so, Lord, my only hope is in you.
OBSERVATION:
The Psalmist had just come through a very upsetting time where, had it not been for losing his witness in the presence of the wicked, he probably would have exploded. It was at this point that he asked God to please open his mind and his understanding about what is really important in life. He went through multiple thoughts about what humans consider important, but it all boiled down to a strong relationship with the Master, because it was the only hope that resulted in strength, stability and any sort of meaningful eternity with any sort of hope. 
APPLICATION:
Like the Psalmist I believe that today we become all heated and bothered over lots of things that, in the end, really boils down to holding no value in eternity. Things such as our employment, our church, politics, family and our friendships. This Scripture reminds us that should we really concentrate on our key relationship with our Lord Jesus, we will not only secure our eternity with He and the Father, but all these other temporal things that we tend to worry back will fall into place, because we will start to look at them from a heavenly perspective instead of a worldly one. Friends it is nothing less than amazing when we take on a new perspective about the way we look at things. From a selfish, greedy, worldly view, we tend to look at things from a very self-centered way. With Jesus in our heart directing our path, giving us wisdom, and a mind fixed on serving Him and being like Him in every way, we tend to respond and act in ways that reflect the love of Jesus and the exemplified life that He portrayed for us to follow. The way that our world is headed right now, we will self destruct to the detriment of our family, friends and ourselves. Recognizing the hope that we have in our Lord Jesus, and in faith accepting His kingship, could lead us towards a mighty revival in our land that demonstrates to the world that our God reigns and that it is obvious from our actions that He reigns and rules in our hearts. Friends, it’s all about Jesus, and not us. Let’s treat those around us with the unconditional love that He showed for us. Our only hope lies in Jesus, and I am convinced that He could revive us to be just like Him. Are you prepared to give Jesus a chance to prove Himself? Our world will be so much better off, and so will we!
PRAYER:
Thank You for Your Word Lord Jesus, and thank You for Your direction in this Scripture on how we could help in making this a better world, through giving You full reign in our lives. Please forgive us for the times that we have messed up and done things in our own strength and in our own way. Your ways are perfect, because You have such a committed and perfect love for mankind. For those of us that know You personally, I pray that it would be very evident to those around us that we are resting our hope in You and allowing You to rule and reign in everything we do or say. Have Your perfect way in our lives oh Lord, and may You touch the lives of those that we will witness to today, so that Your will might be revealed in them also. You are our only hope oh Lord! We acknowledge that today and seek Your guidance so that we might also spread that hope to this lost world. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Thoughts on Listening To God

God had miraculously rescued Israel from their slave masters in Egypt and had taken care of their every need during their 40 long years in the wilderness as they traveled to the land of milk and honey that God promised to them. Yet right up to the very end of their journey they were still rebellious and obstinate about listening to God. Learning from the lessons of the Israelites, surely we have this obedience thing under control today, right? ….. we’ll see…..

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-06-22
SCRIPTURE

From:

Psalm 81:8 (NLT)

Text:

“Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings.
    O Israel, if you would only listen to me!
OBSERVATION:
God had miraculously rescued Israel from their slave masters in Egypt and had taken care of their every need during their 40 long years in the wilderness as they traveled to the land of milk and honey that God promised to them. Yet right up to the very end of their journey they were still rebellious and obstinate about listening to God. Learning from the lessons of the Israelites, surely we have this obedience thing under control today, right? ….. we’ll see…..
APPLICATION:
Evidence of more obedient people today because we have learned from the lessons of the Israelites, might be: Children of God who are in the Book every day seeking direction from God; Christians who spend quality, quiet time with God in prayer at least once every day; Getting along with everyone because of being taught by God to follow His example; Churches filled to capacity as indicators of so many being filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit; Obedience to the Word of God and the Spirit of God causing others to see Jesus in every fiber of our being. Friends it is virtually impossible to accomplish any of these things under our own power, for to fight spiritual battles, we must surrender earthly things, and assume a right relationship with the God of this universe, the One who has all spiritual power, the One who guides us to do things that He commands, and say things ordained by Him. To be like God, we must spend more time with Him than we do with the leader of this world, Satan. God told us in vs 14-16 that if His people would humble themselves and pray and seek His face, then He would intervene and save them and bless them. In verse 8, let’s try removing the word Israel and replacing it with our name, or the name of our church, or our city or state or country. This is what it takes to replace the evil of our land with the good, the blessings and the peace of God that surpasses all human understanding. Are you willing to let it start with you and I? God never said that it would take an army to get His attention or His action, I am convinced that He would move mountains for just one or two, if that’s all that are prepared to follow His commands.
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, You have proven Your love for us in so many ways, and I thank You again for that amazing love. You sacrificed the most dearest thing to Your Father, to prove Your love for us, yet we are so lackadaisical in commitment to You and in our walk for You. When troubles or challenges come, we try every idea thrown at us before we bow the knee in humility before You and seek Your face and Your miraculous touch. Please forgive us Lord, and as reminded in this Scripture today, please help us to listen carefully and follow Your perfect will for our lives so that we might honor You and allow You priority in our lives. I have every reason to believe that You will send opportunities to us today where someone will need to hear about Jesus, or feel Your sincere love, or be guided by Your all knowing and powerful hand. Fill us with so much of Yourself Lord, that we may be usable vessels for You in this world today, AMEN! 
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

A Warning Sign

Mary and Joseph had been forewarned that the child born of Mary would be the Son of God, but they were still astonished by what Simeon shared with them. The awe of a newborn baby sometimes put the parents into a dreamsicle world, where all they could think of is the awesome child this will turn out to be, and the pride that will fill the hearts of the parents! But to hear so early in the process that Jesus could lead to the fall of many, hurt like a dagger through the heart of Mary. This was all very shocking to both Mary and Joseph. We will examine how this is still very real in our world today.

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-06-21
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 2:33-35 (CEV)

Text:

33 Jesus’ parents were surprised at what Simeon had said. 34 Then he blessed them and told Mary, “This child of yours will cause many people in Israel to fall and others to stand. The child will be like a warning sign. Many people will reject him, 35 and you, Mary, will suffer as though you had been stabbed by a dagger. But all this will show what people are really thinking.”
OBSERVATION:
Mary and Joseph had been forewarned that the child born of Mary would be the Son of God, but they were still astonished by what Simeon shared with them. The awe of a newborn baby sometimes put the parents into a dreamsicle world, where all they could think of is the awesome child this will turn out to be, and the pride that will fill the hearts of the parents! But to hear so early in the process that Jesus could lead to the fall of many, hurt like a dagger through the heart of Mary. This was all very shocking to both Mary and Joseph. We will examine how this is still very real in our world today.
APPLICATION:
Simeon said that the presence and ministry of Jesus would be as a ‘warning sign’ to the people. Think about warning signs that we see today and how we react to them. Take for instance the school zone warning signs: some are very respectable of those signs and they slow right down to the designated speed limit while watching diligently for children trying to get to school, that may themselves walk dangerously across the street in their rush to be on time. Other drivers are on a mission to catch up for lost time at home, while still trying to get to work on time. However while rejecting the posted warnings, flashing lights and reduced speed limits, they may be brought to their senses and corrected for their actions by a cop monitoring the area. Unfortunately there are members of our family, our team mates at work and our circle of friends and possibly even at our churches, that make every effort to ignore the warning signs and Biblical teachings of Jesus’ return. This hurts those of us that care, because we know the outcome on the day that they meet Jesus face-to-face. For it saddens us to think that because they never knew Him here on earth, He will disown them when they arise from the dead, and then point them to their home of eternal damnation – Hell. This hurts a mother’s heart, a friend’s heart and all those who knows someone who refuses to listen and honor the sacrifice made for their eternal hope and salvation, yet they make a deliberate choice to do life their own way in spite of the consequences. What has been your personal choice to the ‘Warning Signs’ presented by Jesus? A choice to concede to the Master and follow His commands results in a glorious life in Heaven for all eternity with Jesus and His Father – God. Selfish desires, disobedience and rejection of Jesus Christ means that you would prefer to take your punishment and spend your eternity in Hell with Satan and all of his demons. If you have never made either of these choices, then by default you are assigned to the latter, because accepting Jesus is a deliberate, personal act that you must make for yourself. So it’s up to you friend. My wish for all who will read this devotional is that you have surrendered your life to Jesus and that there is assurance that we will meet in Heaven’s portals one day! If not 100% assured of that, please follow the tips in my Footnote. This is way too important to ignore or delay.
PRAYER:
Dear God, thank You for loving us enough that You provided the WAY and the means for us to be assured of our time in heaven with You one day! You also provided Warning Signs for us to know that we need a Savior. Lord, there are many who are still living dangerously through those Warning Signs and taking the risk of consequences, including Hell. Please touch each one reading this devotional, each family member, and each friend or acquaintance, that they would meet with You and clarify their position with You. This is way too important to ignore, friend. May God be glorified today, because You listened to and followed His Warning Signs, AMEN! 
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Faith Like That of The Shepherds

God had a plan in action, with the miraculous birth of His Son through a virgin named Mary. Everything went just as God had revealed to Mary, Joseph and Elizabeth. Now God was working in the lives of those that were praying for this Savior to come and save them and their country from the awful stain of sin, corruption and destruction. Let’s have a closer look at the shepherds, whom God chose to reveal Himself to, resulting in them being one of the first groups to visit the newborn infant and God’s servants, Mary and Joseph.

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-06-20
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 2:8-12 (NCV)

Text:

That night, some shepherds were in the fields nearby watching their sheep. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them. The glory of the Lord was shining around them, and they became very frightened. 10 The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I am bringing you good news that will be a great joy to all the people. 11 Today your Savior was born in the town of David. He is Christ, the Lord. 12 This is how you will know him: You will find a baby wrapped in pieces of cloth and lying in a feeding box.”
OBSERVATION:
God had a plan in action, with the miraculous birth of His Son through a virgin named Mary. Everything went just as God had revealed to Mary, Joseph and Elizabeth. Now God was working in the lives of those that were praying for this Savior to come and save them and their country from the awful stain of sin, corruption and destruction. Let’s have a closer look at the shepherds, whom God chose to reveal Himself to, resulting in them being one of the first groups to visit the newborn infant and God’s servants, Mary and Joseph.
APPLICATION:
Some may assume that I am getting wrapped up in the Christmas story way early this year, and while I totally love the story of our Savior’s birth, I am merely reading through the Bible and got to this Scripture today! I believe that way too often we hear the Christmas story, and because we have always loved the story of Jesus’ birth, we remember the story vividly and therefore never stop to meditate on particular servants or scenes, because we feel like we have heard it all so many times over the years. In the case of the shepherds, they were keeping watch over their sheep to protect them from the wild animals that may have been looking for a quick way into the pasture to grab one for dinner! It seems like these were godly men who prayed for a deliverer, and probably looked into the night sky while on watch, just praying some more and imagining what it might be like if that deliverer might come during their lifetime. I believe that many Christians probably do something very similar when they look at the challenges with politics in their own country. I love the outdoors, so I have often looked into the dark skies lit only by God’s perfect candles (stars) and imagined what it would be like to witness the return of Jesus Christ when He comes to take fellow Christians and myself up to our heavenly home to live eternally with Him! What if that night silence and dark sky was broken one night and God sent His angels to come and take us home? Of course you will immediately cry out for family and friends for whose salvation you’ve been praying, but can you even imagine the joy that will fill your heart to even imagine going to live with your blessed Redeemer for whom you’ve been loving, serving and anticipating for years? In fact, this may all have crossed the minds of these shepherds as they saw something bright and glorious appear before them in the dark sky. I’m sure they were in so much shock and awe that they probably had trouble concentrating on what was being told to them, but they gathered enough from the good news that they quickly decided to go and see this child that the angels spoke of. But let’s be sure that we get this. Imagine being a part of a group considered the lowest of the lowest in society, and now you are convinced that the Almighty God sent an angel to tell you about the birth of His Son? Furthermore, you are witnessing this group dropping everything, and risking to walk a distance to see if this is for real? As part of that group, what will you tell someone along the way who may ask about your travel destination? Friends, I believe you could see that while we classify people based on our perception, God is no respecter of persons. Some of us create separations by country, by race, by political party, by church denomination, etc. But I truly believe that God looks at us as His precious children, period. Being no respecter of persons, God could give someone that we least expect, a message that He would like for us to adhere to, or be encouraged by. Are we seriously looking for a word from the Lord each day, no matter who God decides to use as His delivery boy? Are we seriously looking forward to His return? What if it was today? Are you truly ready and waiting for His return? Let’s try to be like the shepherds who, when told about Jesus, dropped what they were doing and went to worship Him!
PRAYER:
Lord God, You are so awesome in every way, and I praise You for who You are to me. In being reminded today of Your willingness to minister to ALL mankind, I am humbled and reassured that I can stand boldly before the throne and worship You and bring my petitions before You. Lord, for those who will read this and doubt about their worthiness in Your sight, please reassure them of Your love for all mankind – all who were made by You, in Your image and for Your glory. The shepherds glorified the arrival of their long awaited King and Savior, because their world was so challenging and filled with hatred and crime. Sounds like a mirror of what we face today Lord, so we plead that You might hear our cry for help and send us relief that only You could imagine or make possible. We have hope in You oh Lord, please help us to remain faithful until You are ready for us in heaven, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

No Room For Jesus

Very familiar verses that we hear a lot during the Christmas season. Notice that similar words were echoed throughout the physical reign of Jesus Christ, for although the people begged His power as desired, yet He was rejected and mocked at almost every venue throughout His ministry. His closest partners in ministry denied Him when placed under pressure, and He was arrested and crucified because of the good He did for others. Surely all of this must have changed after He arose victoriously, like He said He would. Let’s examine this prospect….

Post Date:

Monday, 2017-06-19
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 2:6-7 (NCV)

Text:

While they were in Bethlehem, the time came for Mary to have the baby, and she gave birth to her first son. Because there were no rooms left in the inn, she wrapped the baby with pieces of cloth and laid him in a feeding trough.
OBSERVATION:
Very familiar verses that we hear a lot during the Christmas season. Notice that similar words were echoed throughout the physical reign of Jesus Christ, that there was no room, or time for Jesus. Although the people begged His power as desired, yet He was rejected and mocked at almost every venue throughout His ministry. His closest partners in ministry denied Him when placed under pressure, and He was arrested and crucified because of the good He did for others. Surely all of this must have changed after He arose victoriously, like He said He would. Let’s examine this prospect….
APPLICATION:
It is so easy to look down our pious noses and criticize the Jews for what they did to Jesus, because He didn’t fit their mold of what their king should look and act like. It is so easy for Christians to look down their pious noses at unbelievers and strongly criticize them for rejecting our Savior and Lord. But I would like for us to stop and consider both groups in this devotional:

  • Unbelievers – We often hear excuses like: I would like to have all of my earthly fun before surrendering my life to Jesus, or in other words: before I could find room or time for Jesus; I see so many cases where those ‘Christians’ have just as many struggles as I have, plus most of them are hypocrites anyway; I have way too much to do with my time than all this church stuff; The church can’t relate to us younger folk, because there are so many traditional, old-heads running the church; etc, etc. It all boils down to you not wanting to find time or availability for Jesus, and you are not willing to make it a priority;
  • Christians – Unfortunately, we hear many of the same excuses as listed above, because there is a ‘human’ aspect living inside both groups. However, it is sad to ask a Christian for their testimony and they can’t share the point in time that they truly accepted Jesus. We hear a lot about how they’ve attended church all of their life, so they know Jesus, or they hung around ‘good’ people and that ‘goodness’ rubbed off on them and they therefore now know Jesus. Compare this to your marriage and see if you can get away with telling a friend something similar in the presence of your spouse! Consider what you are saying to Jesus when you can’t find time, or you can’t be bothered to spend time each day communing with Him. Try this friend, each evening before bed try saying a simple prayer of truth along these lines to your Savior: Thank you for dying for me Lord Jesus. I apologize that I didn’t make it a priority in my day to even say thank You, or welcome You to guide my day. You see, it’s not a matter of ‘time’, it’s a matter of ‘priority’. It’s the same as saying something similar to what the innkeeper said to Joseph and Mary, so sorry but there is no room here for Jesus.

Jesus sacrificed His very life for you friend. What’s the minimum that you are planning to do for Him today? Do you have room for Him in your time, your life, your work, or your marriage? I believe He is waiting to bless you, if you can make time and room for Him today!

PRAYER:
Thank You Lord Jesus for the awesome sacrifice You made, so that those of us that could make room for You in our lives, could one day worship You endlessly in the glories of heaven. Please forgive us Lord for the times that we ‘shut the door’ on You because we have no room for You at the time. Please open our eyes and our understanding to allow You full reign in our lives, for we need You every hour of every day dear Lord. Please help us to always make room for You, so that others may see Jesus and believe. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could 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 Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to 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, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!