Archive for August 2017

Your Church – House of ‘Prayer’?

August 31, 2017

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-08-31
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 19:45-47 (NLT)

Text:

 45 Then Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out the people selling animals for sacrifices. 46 He said to them, “The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be a house of prayer,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves.”47 After that, he taught daily in the Temple….
OBSERVATION:
In the verses immediately preceding these, Jesus entered into Jerusalem and wept over the city because of all that He saw going on there. The sadness stirred His anger as He walked into the temple, a place set aside for prayer, as declared in Isaiah 56:7. Jesus immediately thought of the prophecy by Jeremiah where he declared that the house of God would be turned in a den of thieves (Jer. 7:11). Let’s see how this impacts us today….
APPLICATION:
In our study yesterday, we looked at the results of the Israelites ‘crying out to God’. My interpretation of that is: they were pleading earnestly with God in prayer for Him to rescue them. Throughout the Bible we see example after example where successful, dedicated men of God pleaded earnestly with God for His protection, guidance and wisdom. Would you dare say that each of our churches are more dedicated to prayer than anything else in our ministry? I believe that I can safely say that churches today are more geared towards praise and worship, preaching the Word, youth and children’s programs and adult ministries that may, or may not, be linked to a Bible Study or prayer. For those churches who still have prayer meetings, it is one of the least attended services of the week, with very few exceptions. So this makes me question, can God look at our church as a real Isaiah 56:7 church? I believe,  that we can attribute this to the heart of our people during the week. If we pray and meditate during the week, we will certainly miss that, and demand it for the church at large, during corporate worship, or even that we hold special prayer meetings. I heard one old saint say that if all we were going to do on Wednesday nights is pray, he just won’t come, for he wanted to hear the Pastor teach! This may be the heart set of many, but yet we call it ‘Prayer Meeting’! Jesus said in 2 Chronicles 7:14 that ‘if my people would humble themselves and pray, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven….’ Friends, I believe this is telling us that we need God’s help to turn from our wicked ways; we need His power to heal our wicked, sinful land; and we know for sure that He is the only one capable of touching the heart of mankind and creating within them a desire to accept Jesus as Lord. This all starts with prayer! Please give this a much higher priority in your home, in your church, and in your life! As God heals our land, you will be among that crowd! 
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, just as You cleansed the temple before You taught, please cleanse me of all my sin so that You may also teach me Your truths and give me opportunities to share that with others. Lord, I would also ask that You work in the lives of our church leaders to assume the primary focus of Your intent for the church, that it be a place of prayer, where we sometime preach, and teach, and have fun times, and have great praise teams, etc. May the main thing be the main thing in my church oh Lord, my Rock, my Redeemer; and soon coming King, 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!

God Hears and Acts on the Cry of His People

August 30, 2017

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-08-30
SCRIPTURE

From:

Judges 3:9-10; 15 (NLT)

Text:

 But when the people of Israel cried out to the Lord for help, the Lord raised up a rescuer to save them. His name was Othniel, the son of Caleb’s younger brother, Kenaz. 10 The Spirit of the Lord came upon him, and he became Israel’s judge…..

15 But when the people of Israel cried out to the Lord for help, the Lord again raised up a rescuer to save them. His name was Ehud son of Gera, a left-handed man of the tribe of Benjamin.

OBSERVATION:
God overcame many obstacles for the Israelites and provided them a land that they described as ‘flowing with milk and honey’. However, when they settled and became happy in all that they had, they assumed their old habits and turned their face against God. When they did this, God allowed them to become servants of the very ones that God left in the land to teach them, by opposing their religion and their beliefs. When they felt like they could take no more, they made 2 Chronicles 7:14 their very own and sought the face of God. In just a few verses we recognize the fact that God never gives up on us and hears our cry when we cry out to Him.
APPLICATION:
When I meditated on these verses, I was reminded of a popular verse that is often quoted in times of national or large scale crisis, 2 Chronicles 7:14, where the Lord told us that if we humble ourselves and pray and seek His face, then we can be assured that He would hear from heaven and heal our land….. In our Scripture today, we see where God was teaching the Israelites a very difficult lesson, and I might add that it very much applies to us today. God rescued His people from Egypt in a miraculous turn of events, and allowed two men whose main qualifications were trusting in God and allowing Him to lead their every move. God brought these thousands of people through some very testing and challenging times, but He lovingly took care of them for 40 years as they plundered through the wilderness to their final destination near the Jordan River. By the time of their arrival, God was dealing with a whole new generation, so there were some important lessons that He needed to teach them. So He left some of the original inhabitants in place, while giving some strict rules to the Israelites about their interaction with them. In very similar fashion to most of us reading this blog, the Israelites had their needs met by God, and very soon they fit right into the culture and sins of those that God warned them about. Unfortunately, I believe that we are more like the Israelites, that we read about in the Old Testament, than we might care to believe. In our times of crisis, we know where to run. But as soon as we see that God is in control, we lessen our commitment to Him and wander off again. Friends, Jesus said that not even to He knows the day and time of God’s return to take His remaining saints home to glory. However, what we all know, is that He will come to take only His saints with Him. These are ones who have surrendered their lives to the lordship of Jesus Christ and are seriously committed to Him. Do you remember the day that you made that commitment to Jesus? If you have never done this, then you are unprepared for that great evacuation. Yes, God sent a savior for the Israelites when they cried out to Him. God also sent a Savior for those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. In both cases, only those who believe in the mighty works of the one sent, will be saved. If you have any doubt at all about where you will spend eternity, if Jesus returns today, please read my Footnote and look up the Scriptures quoted in the link for ‘To Know Jesus’. Please follow my suggestions, and then contact me so that I might pray with you, and rejoice with you about your decision!
PRAYER:
Lord, You took the Israelites to their knees after suffering for years under the leadership of the enemy. Many in our family and network of friends have drifted off to the leadership of the enemy – Satan. Lord we cry out to You today for saints to be totally committed to You, if they have truly surrendered their hearts to You. Please show them how important this is in their witness to unbelievers. I also ask that You would once again humble the hearts of those who need to make a decision to accept You today. Lord, may this be the day – PLEASE? I ask these things in faith and through the wonderful name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. 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!

Things that Anger God

August 29, 2017

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-08-29
SCRIPTURE

From:

Judges 2:10-14 (TLB)

Text:

 10 But finally all that generation died; and the next generation did not worship Jehovah as their God and did not care about the mighty miracles he had done for Israel. 11 They did many things that the Lord had expressly forbidden, including the worshiping of heathen gods. 12-14 They abandoned Jehovah, the God loved and worshiped by their ancestors—the God who had brought them out of Egypt. Instead, they were worshiping and bowing low before the idols of the neighboring nations. So the anger of the Lord flamed out against all Israel. He left them to the mercy of their enemies, for they had departed from Jehovah and were worshiping Baal and the Ashtaroth idols.
OBSERVATION:
God had been so patient with the Israelites. Rescuing them miraculously from Egypt; Bringing them through the wilderness, feeding them, defying nature to defeat their enemies; and held back rivers of water so that they could walk across on dry land to their destination. God did this while having to deal with their sin every time that Moses and Aaron turned their heads. However, in our Scripture today we will see where at one time God gave in to their wishes and left them to their own vices. Why would such a ‘loving’ God allow His people to suffer like this? Let’s have a look, and also see if this applies to us today…..  
APPLICATION:
One of the hardest things for a parent to do, is to let go of their grown children and allow them to grow from their own experiences. I believe that one of the more satisfying things a parent might hear from their grown child is: “You warned me over and over that this might happen, and yes it happened just as you said. I wish I didn’t have to deal with the consequences,” Friends, this is exactly how God works. He sent His very own Son to die a cruel death, but to satisfy the debt of our sin if we ask for God’s forgiveness. He provided us a Book of Instruction by which the child of God might learn what pleases God and what creates a stench in His nostrils. So why then would we be in danger of Hell and damnation you might ask. Well, how are you doing with your admission of guilt? How submissive are you? Are you willing to surrender self control and allow God to lead you in the right paths of life? Where’s your Bible? Is it accumulating dust or do you use it way too often for that to occur? Do you bring up your kids in the fear of the Lord and understanding God’s Word to be their guide for life? Remember, we agreed a long time ago that we don’t want our school system spoiling them with that good stuff? That last one is interesting, because since that decision was made, there seems to be no end, or surprise to the quantity and variety of sins that are occurring right inside of our schools. If it starts there, do you think for a moment that it gets better when these kids hit the streets and have no supervision at all? Friends, the Israelites suffered from their rebellion and as a result of their sin. Might the things that are happening in our land and in our world be a reflection of our sin? More and more people tend to find solace in their own little world building their own little kingdoms. Fewer and fewer attend church, and more and more kids are getting into trouble because of imitating all that they see and hear from their adult counterparts. More and more churches are closing its doors while more and more prisons are needed to handle their overcrowding. Our God is in control. I believe that He will quickly and gladly hear your cry of forgiveness and accept you as His very own child. However, I believe that He will also regrettably allow you to wander and sin if you reject Him. Sin cannot enter heaven, so if you choose the latter, know that the only alternative is eternity in Hell. If you haven’t decided yet what you will do with Jesus, may I recommend Him to you friend? I have known Him personally for over 40 years and I live as a complete example of what He can do with a sinner saved by His grace! Make your decision today friend, for my Lord can return at any moment. It is at that point that He will decide to do with you. You can make that decision today and live in peace throughout eternity. Do it friend!
PRAYER:
Lord God, I can’t imagine going to the airport knowing that I am going to a dreaded place where I will live in misery with lots of regrets. But many of my friends, family, and perhaps some of my readers, live this way every day. Please tender hearts today, so that they might be reminded of the urgency of getting their hearts right with You and allowing You kingship over their lives. Use Your Word to minister to their hearts, I pray, in the all powerful name of Jesus, Your precious Son, 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!

Godly Results from Obedience

August 28, 2017

Monday, August 27, 2017

Scripture

Bible Reference: Proverbs 3:1–4

Bible Text: 1 My child, never forget the things I have taught you. Store my commands in your heart. 2 If you do this, you will live many years, and your life will be satisfying. 3 Never let loyalty and kindness leave you! Tie them around your neck as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart. 4 Then you will find favor with both God and people, and you will earn a good reputation.

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

In our scripture today we are given some pointers on how we might be blessed by God. Let me share these things in a very simple format so that we might easily get the point and begin to align our lives for blessings from our awesome God:

  • ACTION: Never forget the things taught to you by your parents; your Bible School teachers; your Pastors; the Bible. In fact, store those things deep in your heart so that your words, and your actions will reflect what you have stored, and not what the world teaches or expects from you.
    • REWARD: You will live many years, and your life will be satisfying. So many people live in misery, because they have no hope, or because they have caved in to every whim of this world. Let me encourage you to be obedient to the above ‘Action’, and live in expectation of your rewards from God. 
  • ACTION: Be loyal and kind. Some translations also use the characteristic ‘love’. These are so important, that God instructed us through the writer to tie these around our neck and write them deep into our heart. I find that the easiest way for me to do this with a Bible verse, is to type it out and place it on my computer screen, the refrigerator door, or somewhere that will catch my attention throughout my day. To embed these things into our heart is best done through memorization or reading the words repeatedly throughout your day. 
    • REWARD: You will find favor with God and those that you hang around. Your character will then earn you a good reputation by those who know you. I don’t believe there is anything that a Christian would desire more, than to know that our lives are pleasing to God. Re-read the above ‘Action’ and practice it every day friends!

Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for giving us Your Word so that we might catch a glimpse of Your heart for us. It is evident that you want so bad for us to succeed in our Christian walk that You have given us everything we need to know about what pleases You. Lord, we long to live in total obedience to You. Please touch our hearts and help us to be strong and determined to shun Satan and to live our lives in total obedience to You. May these commands today impact us so that we might willingly live totally obedient lives to Your will and way. Forgive us Lord for our inadequacies and unwillingness of the past. 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!

Commitment to Whom You Will Serve

August 26, 2017

Post Date:

Saturday, 2017-08-26
SCRIPTURE

From:

Joshua 24:14-15 (MSG)

Text:

 14 “So now: Fear God. Worship him in total commitment. Get rid of the gods your ancestors worshiped on the far side of The River (the Euphrates) and in Egypt. You, worship God.
15 “If you decide that it’s a bad thing to worship God, then choose a god you’d rather serve—and do it today. Choose one of the gods your ancestors worshiped from the country beyond The River, or one of the gods of the Amorites, on whose land you’re now living. As for me and my family, we’ll worship God.”
OBSERVATION:
Joshua knew that he was dying, and he wanted to have one last meeting with the leaders and heads of families, to reemphasize the importance of them giving their full commitment to God, the One who had brought their forefathers out of Egypt; provided for them while traveling through the wilderness for forty years; won all the battles in ousting the residents of the Promised Land so that they could live there in peace; and provided good godly leaders who were totally obedient to lead the people during these long journeys. In leading them to a commitment to whom they will serve, Joshua led the way by committing right up front who he and his family would serve. Let’s see how God would have us apply this to our lives today! 
APPLICATION:
Joshua did what most pastors do at our services today. They show us where we were; where God brought us from; how He got us to where we are; how we may be living contrary to God’s Word that may deter us from moving forward with Him; and what we need to do in order to achieve our final goal – heaven. Like the Israelites, if we stop and honestly ponder we will quickly conclude that God has graciously brought us through so many things, and we can reflect back on so many miracles, yes miracles in our own lives. But where are you at now Brother? Are you standing strong, and just as committed to God as you’ve always been? Are you convinced that if Jesus came this very moment that He would be proud of where you stand with Him? Are you living the life that an unsaved person could easily follow and find Jesus? Joshua was willing to commit to every leader that he was speaking to, that he and his household were committed to God and that they would worship the Lord God. Although the text doesn’t say it, I believe Joshua meant that commitment to be from that day forward. Are you committed enough to take that stand? I believe this lost world is looking for committed Christians that they cannot classify as hypocrites. What will they conclude about you Brothers and Sisters? Remember they only see what you allow them to see, but God knows your innermost thoughts and feelings. So as you go to God, be honest and confess all your sin before Him.
PRAYER:
Lord God, please touch the hearts of myself, and all those who might read this devotional today. Please help us to examine our hearts before You and seek Your forgiveness as necessary. Lord, we need clean hearts that we might commit right back to You, so that we may live godly lives that will testify of Your goodness and Your forgiveness. We have nothing to brag about, for it’s by Your grace alone that we are made whole and live our lives pleasing to You.. But we want to do that Lord, so please humble us, and give us boldness to step into Your presence and allow You to work in us. Let us be followers of Joshua’s example and commit to You that as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord! 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!

Qualities of a Child That Adults Need

August 24, 2017

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-08-24
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 18:16-17 (TLB)

Text:

 16-17 Then Jesus called the children over to him and said to the disciples, “Let the little children come to me! Never send them away! For the Kingdom of God belongs to men who have hearts as trusting as these little children’s. And anyone who doesn’t have their kind of faith will never get within the Kingdom’s gates.”
OBSERVATION:
Men has a predetermined idea of the qualities needed to do a job, and the type of person to do it – perhaps even the age of the person. Jesus tried to break that idea by showing that there are qualities even in a child, who has not really experienced a lot in life yet, that we need to take note of. Let’s have a closer look at those qualities and see what we might learn from them.
APPLICATION:
It is so challenging for a group of adults to sit in a room and come to a unanimous decision. Even more challenging for a group working on a project and agreeing to accomplish the necessary tasks in unity. Jesus pointed out two qualities that He recognized in children that, I believe, we need to have a closer look at:

  • Trust: When our child was very young, we were told that it was the best time to teach her to swim, because she had not built up the fear of the water yet. I believe it was more like, she knew that her mom and the teacher were keeping such a close eye on her that she felt safe. Put a child on a wall and tell them to jump to you, and generally they will jump without a second thought, because they trust their mom or dad, who’s asking them to jump. You tell a child about God, and although, like us, they never see God, they are convinced that God is always there watching over them. Listening to a child’s prayer will blow you away, because you could easily tell how much trust they have developed in God.
  • Faith: Although very similar to trust, a child’s faith seems to never waiver or fail – until they are old enough to see our weakness in faith! Think about this, we tell children about God before they could ever talk back to us, and they have faith to believe it, even though they have never seen Him. We tell them about Santa, and every Christmas they are excited with anticipation about him coming. Friends, we sing hymns and we hear Bible teachers and preaches say it often: have faith in God. This means that: We should easily believe that God exists, even though we have never seen Him; We should easily believe that heaven is real, even though we have never seen it; However, when we approach God with things we think are impossible, we tend to believe that it is impossible with Him also. Friends, my God is the One who parted the waters of the Red Sea and the waters of the Jordan River so that His people could march across on dry land! What is it again that you feel He cannot handle for you? Is your faith where it needs to be? Draw close to God, and He will draw close to you friend.
PRAYER:
Father God, Creator of heaven and earth, All powerful and almighty in strength and power, we exalt You and we lift up Your name on high. We come before You with thanksgiving, knowing that we serve an awesome God who loves and cares for His children. Please enhance our faith Lord, so that we may trust You with all of life’s ups and downs. Lord we need You every day and in every circumstance. We need You every hour dear Lord. Thank You for Your faithfulness and love. 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!

Persistent in Faith and Prayer

August 23, 2017

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-08-23
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 17:6-7 (TLB)

Text:

6 Then the Lord said, “If even an evil judge can be worn down like that, 7 don’t you think that God will surely give justice to his people who plead with him day and night? 8 Yes! He will answer them quickly! But the question is: When I, the Messiah, return, how many will I find who have faith and are praying?”
OBSERVATION:
Jesus used an example of an unkind judge who gave a kind answer to a lady who came before him persistently. Jesus likened this to those who come before Him persistently in prayer, but He seemed skeptical about how many He would find like this when He returns. 
APPLICATION:
Our first read of this scripture might result in us saying “of course we pray”. But the question may arise ‘But how persistent are you in prayer?’. Pastors and church leaders become very discouraged by the number that shows up for prayer meetings and even fewer who are comfortable speaking publicly to God  at those meetings? But you know what’s really scary? God knows the hearts of each one attending prayer meetings, and those who never make the effort. I don’t believe He is as concerned about how loudly they speak out in prayer to impress the leaders and attendees, as He is about their heart’s condition. You see, it is easy for most folk to pray when they are accustomed to doing it habitually. Prayer is not reserved for just Wednesday nights, or when the pastor asks you to bow your heads in prayer. The woman in the scripture verses today went before the judge persistently, before he finally got it, or really heard her heart’s cry. A child will ask for something once, and we take it as a wish. A child who asks persistently will get our attention and cause us to act. I’ve heard of employees getting hired because they constantly followed up on their application. It showed the employer that they seriously want the job. Does God know the request closest to your heart, based on how much you’ve asked Him for it? I believe that those of us who are persistent in our faith, knows that God can do what He says He could do, and those of us who are persistent in our prayer knows that God is hearing each time we ask, and that He will answer when the timing is just right for Him to receive the glory in response.  Let me encourage you to develop a persistent habit of prayer, so that God will know that you are serious about what you are asking. Then be persistent in your faith, knowing that God’s timing is always right and that He will never let His children down.
PRAYER:
We are such an instant world anymore Lord, and we crop such an attitude when our prayers are not instantly answered the way that we ask. Please forgive us Lord, and may we never treat You like a microwave or a drive-thru restaurant, but like the Savior of this world. The King of all kings. Majestic in glory and Creator of this whole universe. May we never forget who is in charge, who has the power to raise the dead, make the blind to see again and so much more – including the simple things that we bring before You that overwhelms us. Thank You for being patient with us and loving us anyway dear Lord. For I ask these things in Your name and for Your glory, 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!

Not ‘Eclipse’ but ‘Apocalypse’!

August 23, 2017

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-08-22
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 17:30-36 (TLB)

Text:

 30 Yes, it will be ‘business as usual’ right up to the hour of my return.
31 “Those away from home that day must not return to pack; those in the fields must not return to town— 32 remember what happened to Lot’s wife! 33 Whoever clings to his life shall lose it, and whoever loses his life shall save it. 34 That night two men will be asleep in the same room, and one will be taken away, the other left. 35-36 Two women will be working together at household tasks; one will be taken, the other left; and so it will be with men working side by side in the fields.”
OBSERVATION:
The word “apocalypse” comes from the Greek word apokalypto, meaning “to appear,” that occurs here. Jesus’ sudden appearing at the Second Coming will constitute the greatest apocalypse in history. When it begins it will not help to flee for cover – like many did yesterday in the USA with the eclipse. Everyone was told not to look at the sun during the time that the eclipse occurred. At the time of the apocalypse it will matter whether you have been looking forward to the return of the SON and whether you know Him as Savior and Lord. In the eclipse you stood a chance of losing your eyesight if you were careless about looking at the sun without eye protection. With apocalypse you stand to lose your life if you are unprepared to receive the King of all kings, Jesus Christ.
APPLICATION:
The most common answer for most people to the question “How was your day?”, is ” It was business as usual”. Interesting, because those are the words used by Scripture to drill into us what our state of readiness should be for the return of Christ. I believe this means that my work calendar may not be as critical as it appears to be every day. In other words, if I don’t remember an appointment, a reminder will pop up on my computer screen reminding me of that meeting. My lunch hour is marked on my calendar so someone doesn’t make a vain trip to my office during that time. I prepare ahead for most of my meetings, and I prepare well ahead by packing a lunch and taking it with me each morning. Why we could have even put the eclipse on our calendars, and purchased protective glasses in advance, because scientists had calculated precise times for various points in the country. To the contrary, Jesus said that not even He knows the day or the hour of His return, however He teaches throughout Scripture that when He appears (apocalypse), He will gather those who are prepared and ready to go. Then how and when should we be ready for that? I’m so glad you asked, because an apocalypse sounds nothing like the Hurricane Tracking Station watching a weather disturbance begin off the coast of Africa, then turn into a tropical depression several days later, then a hurricane that appears to be heading for a highly populated area of our country, giving us several days of warnings and preparation time. If God is the only One who knows when His Son will appear, and we know from His Word that He is returning for a prepared people, then it behooves us to be ready right now, in case He decides to return before breakfast, or perhaps while we’re at lunch or even in that important long scheduled meeting this afternoon. There’s nothing to pack, like we would for a trip or a long absence from home. There’s no planning for boarding the pets or announcing to the neighbors. The Bible says that Jesus will come for one purpose only – to take His children home to glory. ‘His children’ are composed of those who accepted His lordship before He returns. If you have done that, then you are ready for the apocalypse. If not, your chance will end in a instant – when He appears. There is nothing we can prepare ahead of time, other than our heart. Be obedient to the call of Jesus and accept Him as Lord and Savior, and you will be saved – according to the Scripture. Your changed life will overflow with evidence of that and Jesus will include you in the number that He will return to take with Him to heaven. Those who fail to do this will not remain with business as usual, for Satan will begin turning up the heat as he introduces you to your new home – Hell. I write this blog everyday hoping that you will not be left behind friend. Please read my Footnote and take advantage of the hyperlinks to help you change your life today, please?
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus Your Word is clear that You will return to collect Your own to spend eternity around Your throne in heaven with You and the Father. You have given us, what seems like an eternity, to recognize our need for the Savior, and to surrender our life of sin to the only One capable of washing our slate clean, and therefore presenting ourselves holy and righteous before our awesome God. Thank You for the provision dear Jesus, and thank You for hearing my heart’s cry for forgiveness. Please guide me to be an ambassador for You before a lost and dying world. I ask that You also touch the heart of each reader today, so that they may have the same assurance as I do, so that together we may meet at Your heavenly throne as we bow before You and the Father. Should You return before this blog hits the internet highway, or at any time You decide. May we be ready to go! May Your name be exalted today by Your children, and may You be sought earnestly by those who have doubts about their state of readiness. This is my heart-cry today oh Lord. 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 Faith That Heals and Saves

August 21, 2017

Post Date:

Monday, 2017-08-21
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 17:14-19 (MSG)

Text:

 14-16 Taking a good look at them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.”They went, and while still on their way, became clean. One of them, when he realized that he was healed, turned around and came back, shouting his gratitude, glorifying God. He kneeled at Jesus’ feet, so grateful. He couldn’t thank him enough—and he was a Samaritan.

17-19 Jesus said, “Were not ten healed? Where are the nine? Can none be found to come back and give glory to God except this outsider?” Then he said to him, “Get up. On your way. Your faith has healed and saved you.”

OBSERVATION:
This is known as the story of the Ten Lepers. Leprosy is a dreaded decease where those afflicted were placed outside the city gates in order not to infect others. However these 10 lepers had heard about Jesus, and had some hope that He would heal them, if only they could get close enough to let Jesus know their heart’s cry. This happened as they had hoped and wished for, but the healing demanded a lot of faith from the lepers. Let’s examine this closer and see what God might say to us through His Word….
APPLICATION:
For every person that passed within eye-shod  of these lepers, I’m sure that 99.99% of them turned their heads and went on their way to avoid any type of contact with this dreaded decease. However, just as He does when He looks at the sinner today, Jesus looked beyond the physical needs of these lepers and saw the cry of their hearts; their desperate need; and their sincere need of salvation and healing. For the lepers, I could only imagine that the words of an old gospel hymn may have been written based on their mindset: ‘Where could I go but to the Lord’. I want us to look very carefully at the way this healing was performed. Without anything changing in their lives, the lepers were told by Jesus to go and show themselves to the priests. To humanly look at their skin, nothing had changed, yet they obeyed Jesus by going to the priests, as demanded. How many of you would be prepared to do that? Imagine that in one of your church services, one comes forward for prayer with obvious signs of an incurable skin decease, and I have researched and found that in spite of today’s excellent research and medical advancements, there are still incurable skin deceases. So after much prayer by your pastor, elders and leaders of your church, the pastor jumps up and demands that the afflicted ones leave at once and confirm with their doctors that they have been completely healed. As the afflicted look at their skin and notice that nothing has changed, what do you suppose they will do? As the congregation looks on, do you suppose they will stop praying and start celebrating? The Bible says that nothing occurred until the lepers started their journey towards the priests to whom they were sent, but the important lesson is that they acted on their faith in the healing process. If they had not, they would have gone back to their caves and brushed aside all they had heard about Jesus as a farce. Friends, if we believe on the One who died for our sin, then we must be willing to act on our faith. When we do, we will earnestly pray for those in need of healing, and when we ourselves are pressed with hardship and affliction, we will quickly follow the Master’s commands, in faith, knowing that only Jesus can heal, and only He can love the vilest sinner as His very own righteous son/daughter. Do you know this Jesus of whom I have spoken in this blog, friend? If you don’t, or are unsure, please click on the link in my Footnote entitled ‘To Know Jesus’, otherwise follow the other tips noted in my Footnote. Jesus loves you friend, and He want’s You to place your trust in Him. Whether you have never accepted Jesus as Lord, or if you are facing leprosy, cancer or some other decease, Jesus loves you and would like to see you surrender your life and your circumstances to Him. May I encourage you to seek the face of Jesus today for whatever you may be facing? 
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, thank You for loving us in spite of who we are and all that we may have done in our lifetime. You cared about the lepers who cried out to You, and I am convinced that You care for each of Your children who call on You today. Thank You for loving us unconditionally. Please guide us to a love like that, so that we may not only love You in the same way, but also our fellow man. Your willingness to heal men who were rejected by society, is yet one more reminder that You also love each of us today, and would be willing to heal us if we call on You. Oh that we will show our appreciation by allowing You control of our lives. 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!

Willing To Forgive

August 19, 2017

Post Date:

Saturday, 2017-08-19
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 17:1-4 (CEV)

Text:

 Jesus said to his disciples: There will always be something that causes people to sin. But anyone who causes them to sin is in for trouble. A person who causes even one of my little followers to sin would be better off thrown into the ocean with a heavy stone tied around their neck. So be careful what you do.

Correct any followers of mine who sin, and forgive the ones who say they are sorry. Even if one of them mistreats you seven times in one day and says, “I am sorry,” you should still forgive that person.

OBSERVATION:
Jesus knew that there were believers who looked down on others, and even in the case of other new believers they would do things to temp them, rather than offer a hand up, or an encouraging word to help them overcome. Additionally, Jesus knew that there were some who struggled with forgiveness, especially when being asked for forgiveness more than once. I bet if you hadn’t read the Scripture reference you may have thought that this was a sermon addressed to Christians today! Let’s look into the application.
APPLICATION:
I believe that as each of us read scriptures such as this one today, we quickly reflect on that relative that struggles with similar issues to those addressed by Jesus, or perhaps a neighbor or a friend. I’m sure there are folk who told us, or told the church, that they had given their hearts to the Lord, and we walked away thinking “right, I’ll have to see it to believe it”. Jesus wanted to make sure that He expects us to help lift that young Christian up, encourage them, love on them so that they may be assured of the fellowship of the saints – brothers and sisters of the same Father. Knowing that Jesus has perfect insight into a person’s heart, and that He died on the cross so that ALL might come to Him for salvation, He doesn’t expect us to understand or even analyze how Jesus could possibly accept this person or that person. For His ways are not our ways. We tend to look at how a change of heart might affect that person’s relationship with us, but Jesus looks at that person just as He looked at us when we came to Him for salvation. We all came to the cross in just the same condition – sinners. Jesus saved us and redeemed us of our sin, so that we are all equal at the foot of the cross. Who are we to look down our noses and think otherwise? Jesus gave a pretty serious warning for those who try to cause a young Christian to stumble – the consequence would be as serious as death, for He said that it would be just as if you were thrown overboard with a heavy rock around your neck. Jesus went on to warn us of another sin that could be very serious for us. I’ve heard fellow believers say that a Christian Brother or Sister hurt them and later sought forgiveness. They forgave them once, but they will never trust them again or get close to that person again. I believe verse 4 is telling us that it’s not our job to bring judgment on another believer. If they ask forgiveness, it is our Christian obligation to forgive them. In fact, if they don’t ask forgiveness, it is our Christian responsibility to approach them as a friend, a helper, a prayer warrior, a brother or sister, who will work with them and pray with them to overcome the thing that we see going on in their life. I’m afraid that we could teach this lesson at least once a day to ourselves and others who would acknowledge similar challenges in their lives. What about you friend? Will you be able to stand in front of our Father shoulder to shoulder with that brother or sister that you felt on earth was not the perfect Christian and handle the rebuke from the Father? I would much prefer hearing God say, ‘well done good and faithful servant, for you did what I commanded’.
PRAYER:
Lord I humbly approach Your throne today, knowing that these very things taught in the Scriptures seem impossible to us, because our culture has led us in to a very selfish and judgmental lifestyle. Lord, we need more of You in more of us, so that our families, our churches, our towns, states and country will live more aligned with Your teachings and commands. My readers and I acknowledge that You are the only way, and in believing that we have an obligation to live according to Your commands. Lord, this is contrary to the ways of this world in which we live, so this becomes very challenging. Please work with us and guide us to all truth and give us wisdom and strength to be obedient to You in every way. All glory to You oh King eternal. 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!