The Listening Ear of Our Awesome God

The evidence of a stubborn child who was given lots of power at a young age, is evident in the first 11 verses of this chapter. A young man who watched his dad rule most his life under the watch-care of the Almighty God, yet Manasseh joined in with those who opposed God and together they turned their country totally around to serve the evil one. As a last resort in trying to regain the hearts of Manasseh and his people, God was forced to the very extreme. He sent the Assyrian army in to capture Manasseh and to totally disrupt his people. In spite of all his evil doings, Manasseh finally called out to God during his awful punishment by the Assyrians. And in spite of all that Manasseh did, God still listened to his cry, forgave him, and took him safely back home. Did you ever think that your deeds were much too evil to approach a holy God?

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 33:12-13 (Voice)

TEXT:  12 From this position of complete powerlessness, Manasseh finally humbled himself and begged the forgiveness of the Eternal God of his fathers. 13 He heard Manasseh’s prayer and found it sincere; He returned Manasseh to the throne in Jerusalem. From that day forward, Manasseh never doubted that the Eternal was the True God.

OBSERVATION:   The evidence of a stubborn child who was given lots of power at a young age, is evident in the first 11 verses of this chapter. A young man who watched his dad rule most his life under the watch-care of the Almighty God, yet Manasseh joined in with those who opposed God and together they turned their country totally around to serve the evil one. As a last resort in trying to regain the hearts of Manasseh and his people, God was forced to the very extreme. He sent the Assyrian army in to capture Manasseh and to totally disrupt his people. In spite of all his evil doings, Manasseh finally called out to God during his awful punishment by the Assyrians. And in spite of all that Manasseh did, God still listened to his cry, forgave him, and took him safely back home. Did you ever think that your deeds were much too evil to approach a holy God?

APPLICATION:   Can you think of a time that you felt like you were so far from God, that you felt estranged from Him, and you wondered who you could possibly call on now? If we were to be honest, I believe that we would all agree that there were certain times in our life since accepting Jesus as Lord, that this occurred to us. What a distant feeling. What a lost and alone time for us. A time that we felt like no one cared what happened to us. So what caused this, friends? Do you supposed there was a purpose in this by God? I believe that all too often we know very well why God is disciplining us individually. To the outside world, they have seen only the side of you that you opened up to them, but with God, there are no secrets. For He knows the very hairs on our head, and He knows the very innermost thoughts that we have. Isn’t that scary? Or shall I say, mind-sobering to the extent that we realize that we can remove the ‘wall’ that we’ve been hiding behind, or sheltering ourselves behind, from those that we would just as soon not be privy to those actions, words or thoughts. So why do you suppose that God finds it necessary to make us go through these challenging times in life? Allow me to give you a real life  example: last week a retired missionary asked for prayer for her grandson who told his missionary parents that he felt haunted by an evil spirit, who was following him around. The church body gathered around and prayed over these grandparents on behalf of their troubled grandson. I followed up on that request this week, and the grandmother shared about a strange encounter that her daughter had with a lady she met over recent days who shared a concern about her son being troubled by what felt like an evil spirit following him around! The daughter explained to this non-christian how the prayers of her family and home church prayed to God for the same thing that was happening to her son, and how God removed those thoughts from her son! So why does evil things come our way at times? Well, they came to Manasseh to open the door for God to work in his life, for the good of his nation and for the glory of God. Why did this evil spirit interfere in this your grandson’s life, it could have been for the sole purpose of opening the eyes of this nonbeliever and to draw her to the God who loves her and her son who was impacted by an evil spirit. It is not our jobs to question dear one, but rather to open our hearts to Jesus and allow Him to have His perfect will in our lives, for His precious glory, and for the eternal welfare of those that He touches, even through us.

PRAYER:   Precious Lord, have thine own way in us today. You took Manasseh to a very low point in his life in order to get his attention, and to turn his eyes towards the living God. His redirection in life caused his people to worship his God in lieu of the many gods they knew and worshiped. I pray that we might learn from this experience with our ancestor, and consecrate our lives wholly and solely to the one true God, who has our best interest at heart. In turn, I pray that God will start a new work within us and through us, so that He might be glorified through everyone that we come into contact with. 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 Sebring, 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!

 

When We Seek God

King Hezekiah may not have had the best army, and he may not have been highly regarded by the leaders of his neighboring countries, but I believe that God saw one of His children who was first of all ‘a child of the King’ and then a king of his country. He saw a man who put God first in everything and who shared his personal concerns with God for the best resolution. I wonder how our world would change if we sought God first in everything, and we waited for His response and direction!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 31:20-21 (NLT)

TEXT:  20 In this way, King Hezekiah handled the distribution throughout all Judah, doing what was pleasing and good in the sight of the Lord his God. 21 In all that he did in the service of the Temple of God and in his efforts to follow God’s laws and commands, Hezekiah sought his God wholeheartedly. As a result, he was very successful.

OBSERVATION:   King Hezekiah may not have had the best army, and he may not have been highly regarded by the leaders of his neighboring countries, but I believe that God saw one of His children who was first of all ‘a child of the King’ and then a king of his country. He saw a man who put God first in everything and who shared his personal concerns with God for the best resolution. I wonder how our world would change if we sought God first in everything, and we waited for His response and direction!

APPLICATION:   As we read the Scripture that leads up to our chosen verses, we see quite a contrast between King Hezekiah and his neighboring kings reigning at that same time. There was evidence of self pride, selfishness, mockery of God, and a display of selfish power, compared to a humble heart, a serving spirit and an obedient servant. There was self dependence and lots of soldiers, compared to a man that sought the power and leadership of His God. I love the way the verses are translated in the New Living Translation, for it indicates that because of Hezekiah’s wholehearted dedication to God, he was very successful. This tells me that because Hezekiah dedicating his life to; having total faith in; and trusting wholeheartedly in the King that he served, God made him successful in all that he did. So where do we fail in similar scenarios to those that Hezekiah faced? Friends, I believe that it begins with making the God, who gave His only Son to die on a cross for our sin, a top priority in our lives. This means that if we get nothing else done in our day, we make time to be alone with God – to praise Him for all that He does for us, and to place our concerns at His feet asking to take charge of those things. Further, that you calendar out all meetings that you feel will draw you closer to God, and manage all other invitations as secondary – after all who is your priority? Seek God for all small life decisions, but also the huge decisions. Allow God to be your God, and ready yourself to worship and praise Him as you see Him actively involved in your life. Look at the Scripture again: because of Hezekiah’s wholehearted devotion to God, He made him very successful. Let me encourage you to repeat this statement frequently: ‘because of ____________ (your name) devotion to God, I know that He will meet my needs and make me successful.’ Praise the precious name of Jesus!

PRAYER:   Lord, please touch the hearts of Your children and make us wholly devoted to You. Help us to understand true devotion, and that it’s not measured by the number of times that we attend church in a week, but by our total devotion , trust and obedience in You. May we be children of the Book, and may it be evident whose we are, through the things that we say, do and think. I ask these things in the strong name of Jesus, 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 Sebring, 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!

 

Come Back

King Hezekiah had done an awesome job in restoring the temple, getting the priests back to the temple to prepare themselves before God, and then inviting the people to join him for the Passover. Just like today, when someone has drifted away from the Lord, there is great hesitance in returning to Him, because they are so afraid that God would not accept them back. Hezekiah assured his people in much the same way that I can assure you today, that if you return to God, He is kind and merciful, and will return to you!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 30:9 (ERV)

TEXT:  …. The Lord your God is kind and merciful. He will not turn away from you if you come back to him.

OBSERVATION:   King Hezekiah had done an awesome job in restoring the temple, getting the priests back to the temple to prepare themselves before God, and then inviting the people to join him for the Passover. Just like today, when someone has drifted away from the Lord, there is great hesitance in returning to Him, because they are so afraid that God would not accept them back. Hezekiah assured his people in much the same way that I can assure you today, that if you return to God, He is kind and merciful, and will return to you!

APPLICATION:   I believe it is important for us to think about what brings separation between God and man in the first place. Our first tendency is to believe that God gave up on us. But friends I believe you can look at the Scripture inside and out, and you will never see where God walked out on any of His children. In this case of King Hezekiah, he came to the throne after years of seeing his people worship idols and perform all sorts of public sin against God. However Hezekiah was determined in his heart to worship the God of this universe, and he wanted to see his earthly kingdom do the same. In our world today, we don’t see things quite as clear cut as I just explained, but we often come across folk who would admit that many years ago I attended that church, or I taught Sunday School, or I was a deacon in my church, BUT…….. Then you might hear 1001 excuses why they stopped coming to church. I can assure you that none of the excuses have anything to do with God walking away from them. I heard someone say at one time that such a person allowed the gossiping woman at church to get nearer to God than them, since they are the ones who drifted away from God! So let’s cover this idea of abstaining from church attendance, being the equivalent of drifting away from God. Based on the excuses I hear, let me say that I know you can worship God in your back yard, or out in the middle of the lake with a rod active in the water, or in your hunting stand with your rifle cocked, but do you really think that happens often? Furthermore, what do you respond to God when you read in His word about not forsaking the getting together with other believers to worship Him? If I might be totally honest with you, I believe that God does everything possible to encourage His children to get along with others and to worship their Father together. On the other hand, I believe that Satan does just the opposite. Nothing he loves more than to see Christians fighting and separating from the church of Jesus Christ. So to all my readers who may read this particular blog today, and who might be struggling with church attendance, or getting along with other believers, let me use the same words of Hezekiah in saying to you, come back home dear one. I truly believe that if you come back to Jesus and allow Him to guide your steps, your heart, your tongue, and your daily walk, He will come back to you in a very powerful way. He loved you enough to die for you, please allow Him to show that same kind of love in helping you to draw closer to Him, and to His children.

PRAYER:   Lord there are so many that drift away from You for very trivial reasons, although some have been hurt by others who should know better. Our relationship with You is far more important than any of the stones that can be thrown at us by other struggling saints, so please work on each of us today dear Lord. To the saints in relationship with You, that we may seek the mind of Christ and live like He did. This will draw mankind unto You and in Christian love with one another. To those that feel hurt and have allowed that hurt to separate them from You, please call them back home to You dear Lord. May they reunite with You and allow Your love to cleanse their hearts so that they may love their fellow man. I ask these things in faith, believing in the awesome love of my Lord and Savior, 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 Sebring, 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!

 

Think About Your Life Work

Our challenge is: Children, don’t drag your feet in this! God has chosen you to take your place before him to serve in ___________________ – this is your life work; make sure you do it and do it well.”

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 29:11 (MSG)

TEXT:  Children, don’t drag your feet in this! God has chosen you to take your place before him to serve in conducting and leading worship—this is your life work; make sure you do it and do it well.

OBSERVATION:   Our challenge is: Children, don’t drag your feet in this! God has chosen you to take your place before him to serve in ___________________ – this is your life work; make sure you do it and do it well.”

APPLICATION:   Friends, I believe that God has a work for each of us to do, so I would encourage you to fill in the blank above, then repeat that verse as many times as you care to, so that God’s message might get through to each of us today, that He has a work for us to do, and He wants us to consider it a life work, because He wants to see us commit to doing it well! I’ve heard friends say: but I’m not a preacher; and – but I can’t stand in front of people and teach; and – but I can’t even pray in public; and – but the preacher will have to talk to them about salvation, because I’m not intelligent enough to do that. Now I realize that there is a comeback for each of these excuses, but I will only encourage you today to simply tell your story. If God leads someone to you, then I believe that He obviously has a plan for you to share something about your faith with them, so that He might be glorified. Think about this: if God leads someone to you and you tell them that you really can’t share with them the secret of God’s grace, or how He saved you, they may wonder if what you think you have is real. Ask any of us if we are married, when we got married, where we got married and how long we’ve been married, and most spouses could respond in a heartbeat. But we can’t answer the same questions about our relationship with the Savior of the world? May I dare say that your latter relationship must either be a farce, or you are a puppet who simply did something or said words dictated to you, or you receive no nourishment and/or companionship from the relationship? Friends, your testimony/story should include what your life was like before Jesus; How you met Jesus; and what your life has been like after accepting Jesus. If you then invite your friend who is asking to know this Savior of yours, then you have just done the equivalent of what pastors do week after week in our pulpits. I believe you can share your story, if you want to and if there is a story to tell. Please don’t talk yourself into being a Christian because of peer pressure or any outside influence, as that will create false hope. There is only one way – invite the Lord Jesus to forgive you of your sin and become Lord and Master of your life, through your faith in this simple act. You will grow in your faith through studying the Word of God, so that He could speak to you; have an active prayer life, so that you could speak to God; and fellowship with other believers (most believers do this through obeying God’s Word – where He tells us to not forsake the assembling of ourselves together). In doing the latter we grow from each other and remind each other of the wonderful works of our awesome God! Friends, God has placed us here on earth to complete His work for His glory. This is our life work that he expects us to do for His glory until the very end. Let’s do it well!

PRAYER:   Lord, thank You for blessing Your children beyond anything that we could wish or ask for, beginning with Salvation itself. Help us to activate the love you have instilled in us, and be willing to share the many blessings that You have given to us. Lord, if you see fit to bless us in return, like you promised to the sons of Hezekiah, then we will be forever thankful, but please help us to bless others, and be diligent about our life work. 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 Sebring, 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!

 

All Eyes on Jesus!

King Uzziah, a descendant of King David, had a great mentor in the person of Zechariah. This not only led Uzziah close to God, but also served as an accountability partner for the king. As long as Zechariah was around, King Uzziah depended on God, and he in turn, was successful. However, it soon got to the point where Uzziah started to feel totally capable on his own. This was a fatal mistake, as anytime we take our eyes off Jesus, we are going down, much like in the case of Peter walking on the water towards Jesus. So let’s look inward and determine if our eyes are on Jesus, or off.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 26:5; 16 (MSG)

TEXT:  5 He (King Uzziah) was a loyal seeker of God. He was well trained by his pastor and teacher Zechariah to live in reverent obedience before God, and for as long as Zechariah lived, Uzziah lived a godly life. And God prospered him.    16 But then the strength and success went to his (King Uzziah’s) head. Arrogant and proud, he fell.

OBSERVATION:   King Uzziah, a descendant of King David, had a great mentor in the person of Zechariah. This not only led Uzziah close to God, but also served as an accountability partner for the king. As long as Zechariah was around, King Uzziah depended on God, and he in turn, was successful. However, it soon got to the point where Uzziah started to feel totally capable on his own. This was a fatal mistake, as anytime we take our eyes off Jesus, we are going down, much like in the case of Peter walking on the water towards Jesus. So let’s look inward and determine if our eyes are on Jesus, or off.

APPLICATION:   Business owners often look deep for reasons why their business is doing so well, and of course, why the business might be struggling. This helps to direct management into correcting the things that seem to be causing harm to the company, and they try to tweak those things that are helping their success, hoping that they will do even better. Throughout the Old Testament we read of kings who did what pleased the Lord, or ones who did not. Normally there is a wide contrast between what each one accomplished, but it could often be associated with how much access the king gave God to their leadership. We may have all heard a parent say to an adult child that struggled in business, well son, I saw that coming, because I have never seen a business person establish himself in quite the same way that you did. I wanted to suggest things to you, but I wanted you to ask first. Friends, this is exactly the way that God works. Yes, He’s always with us, but He wants us to stay in communion with Him. I believe that as empty vessels we run to the Master to be filled. I believe that we are being taught in this Scripture today that if we have truly surrendered our lives to the Master, then we will seek His face for all decisions in life, for only God knows what we need, when we need it and how much we need. Furthermore, do we expect failure if God directs our business-plan? But let’s think a bit more deeply about how this works. I’m sure that no one expects to arrive at work one day and find God arranging the inventory on the shelves, or continue on to the accounting department and find God there balancing the books. You see, God works through His children – those who have invited Him to be Lord and Savior of their lives. When a business owner knows God personally, and he daily speaks with Jesus about his blessings, and his concerns about his business, I believe that Jesus will be mindful of the man’s concerns – period. Therefore when he arrives at work and needs to make important decisions, he is still under God’s leadership, and those business decisions will be aligned with God’s will for him and his business. King Uzziah was encouraged to serve God faithfully, as long as Zechariah the priest was there as his support and mentor. Who do you have standing with you as your mentor? Who is your ‘Zechariah’? If you have one already, you are a very blessed person! If you don’t, may I encourage you to find an accountability partner who will support you in your effort to be a faithful servant of our most high God?

PRAYER:   Lord You are good to us in so many ways! You know our strengths, and unfortunately, You also know our weaknesses. Please help us to celebrate our blessings often in our praises of thanksgiving to You. Please also help us in our struggles, both at home and at work. I don’t believe You have Your love separated between our home life and our business life, because I believe that You care about us individually. Please help us to find good accountability partners where we could pray for each other, with one another, and be that encourager for each other, as we walk through the ups and downs of this earth. Lord, I am eternally thankful to You, please continue to bless both personally and in my work place. 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 Sebring, 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!

 

The Impact of Sin by Our Leaders

It is terrifying for God’s people to sit and watch while their leaders worship idols and foreign gods, because we know that our God is a jealous God and that He deserves all of our praise. However it is an awful thing when our leaders ignore God’s warnings and continue in sin to the point that God demands the punishment of all people under their rule. In our Scripture today, God was very angry with the people under the reign of these leaders, and I believe that it’s because they sat idly by while the leaders took the whole country to Hell with them. Don’t we feel the same way even today? Let’s look to the Scriptures!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 24:18 (NLT)

TEXT: 18 The king and these leaders stopped worshiping in the Temple of the LORD, the God of their ancestors. Instead, they began to worship the Asherah idols and other idols. Because they did wrong, God was angry with the people of Judah and Jerusalem.

OBSERVATION:   It is terrifying for God’s people to sit and watch while their leaders worship idols and foreign gods, because we know that our God is a jealous God and that He deserves all of our praise. However it is an awful thing when our leaders ignore God’s warnings and continue in sin to the point that God demands the punishment of all people under their rule. In our Scripture today, God was very angry with the people under the reign of these leaders, and I believe that it’s because they sat idly by while the leaders took the whole country to Hell with them. Don’t we feel the same way even today? Let’s look to the Scriptures!

APPLICATION:   Growing up we were warned about staying away from certain kids, because we are known in our community based on those we hang around with. There are many other things that parents wisely share with their children about our relationship with the wrong crowd: guilty by association; you will quickly become like those you hang around with; their evil intentions will rub off on you a lot quicker than your good intentions will impact them. So how then do we have any control over our leaders? Good question, right? Because we can disassociate from our friends, but we can’t as easily disassociate from our country, or our state, or city or church. Friends, I believe that it all comes back to the level of commitment we have with our Father. A ‘Christian’ who accepted Jesus because of peer or family pressure, will probably struggle with standing firm in their faith that they have supposedly committed their lives to. Compared to a saint that was called by God, and they accepted His call to be Master and Lord of their life. However friends, there are many times in the Bible where Jesus stood up for what was right, and publicly denounced what was wrong. Does congress have a clue that there are Christians out there that disagrees with a law they are about to enact? If your senator came to your city and stood on a street corner where there was open opposition to something you joined other believers in asking him/her to promote in congress, can you speak the truth in love at that public meeting? Because of the way our Scripture is worded, I really believe that God punished the two nations because they sat back and allowed these two leaders to do whatever they pleased, knowing full well that their actions would impact each citizen. When last have you prayed for the leaders of your respective country, state, city or church? If you haven’t, then God is answering your desire to care less about what these leaders do, or how it may impact you. If we don’t pray for our leaders, then we show that we don’t care about them or about how their actions may impact each of us. Friends, I believe it is clear that no matter how much we want to stay out of politics, we are obligated by Scripture to pray for those who rule over us. I believe it is also clear from today’s Scripture that there are consequences when we disobey God’s commands. 

PRAYER:   Lord, thank You again today for Your Word. May our minds always be opened to sharing our faith and praying for our leaders, so that the decisions they make may be influenced by You, and that they may ultimately serve to bless Your children while living here on earth. Give us boldness oh Lord. For I ask all this in the precious and strong name of Jesus, 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 Sebring, 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!

 

How To Live Freely and Unconcerned

Our God is so caring about us, that He recognizes when we are getting at the end of our rope on life’s issues. Extraordinary issues normally require extraordinary attention and care, and normally by someone or something outside of your daily routine, since that’s what caused you to become despondent in the first place. Our God is an awesome God, and no one cares for us like He does, so let’s look to Him for answers on this dilemma.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Matthew 11:28-30 (MSG)

TEXT:  28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.

OBSERVATION:   Our God is so caring about us, that He recognizes when we are getting at the end of our rope on life’s issues. Extraordinary issues normally require extraordinary attention and care, and normally by someone or something outside of your daily routine, since that’s what caused you to become despondent in the first place. Our God is an awesome God, and no one cares for us like He does, so let’s look to Him for answers on this dilemma.

APPLICATION:   I’m sure that many of us can identify with being tired, for we all seem to be over-committed and overworked. And what do we tend to do about that, see a doctor or a therapist? But don’t they most often recommend that we exercise more, and try to distract our brains from the same old routine – which may stress some folk out even more? The other matter addressed in verse 28 speaks to being burned out on religion. For those heavily involved in church work, I bet you can identify with this one, for it seems like we are often involved in one ministry and often multiple ministries. Outside of that we often are committed to more than one committee with several projects or concerns at one time, correct? Well you see what today’s Scripture reads, but let me share an example for you to consider: A friend, who was a pastor at one time, started a new ministry as a result of something he felt led to try with his church leaders. He planned a weekend retreat, and here’s what he did: He and his group arrived at the retreat location with an empty sheet for the agenda. He shared with the group, that they will seek God’s face through His all-powerful Word (the Bible), and they would pray as they are led to do so by God, or they would sing praises to God as also led by Him. From an empty agenda, they were soon inundated with Scripture, prayer and singing out on a mountain top with no cell phones or other matters to worry about, but merely one-on-one time with God. Friends, when God says to us that we should learn to get alone with Him and share our burdens and concerns with Him – perhaps about why we feel so tired, or worn out, or so overwhelmed in ministry. Perhaps then we might see His wonderful face and be reminded through His love and care, why our mission is so important and understand more clearly that when we allow God to be a vital part of our lives and ministry, how rewarding it is. Oh that we might see people in our church, our community, our family and our friends reaching out to the Creator of this universe! I believe that not only will God be glorified, but this will bring peace, contentment, and rejoicing to us, instead of added stress with its associated burdens. It’s all about God friends. Let Him be God. Allow Him to use us in the process of winning people to the Lord and rejoicing in Him as we see Him glorified by all the people! Let’s strive for peaceful times with God, away from the hustle and bustle of this world, so that we might enjoy times of freedom and contentment in Him. Oh that we might be encouraged and prompted along in the ministry in which He has placed us to serve.

PRAYER:   Dear Lord, thank You for being so available to us. Thank You for caring enough for Your children that You encouraged us to find peace in You for You alone are our Shepherd, our Lord, our Majesty, our King and our Deliverer. As we seek to draw close to You, we will live in freedom and without the burdens of this world. Thank You Lord for helping us to find that peace, especially in the stresses of life that bombard us each day. Glory be to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, 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 Sebring, 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!

 

Allow God To Own the Problem

King Jehoshaphat was extremely concerned about the large army heading his way, so he had a very serious prayer meeting together with his people, asking God to protect them. However, God spoke through a Levite named Jahaziel, who then went to Jehoshaphat and shared the words in our Scripture today. What a message, and oh how applicable it is to us today!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 20:15 (VOICE)

TEXT:   Jahaziel: 15 Listen to me, all Judah, citizens of Jerusalem, and King Jehoshaphat. The Eternal has responded to your pleading: “Do not fear or worry about this army. The battle is not yours to fight; it is the True God’s.

OBSERVATION:   King Jehoshaphat was extremely concerned about the large army heading his way, so he had a very serious prayer meeting together with his people, asking God to protect them. However, God spoke through a Levite named Jahaziel, who then went to Jehoshaphat and shared the words in our Scripture today. What a message, and oh how applicable it is to us today!

APPLICATION:   Take your time and think about your most urgent prayer request. You’ve shed many tears over the matter, and you’ve made this the top priority in your personal prayer time for days.  You’ve asked your pastor to join you in prayer; you may have asked the church elders to anoint you with oil and pray over you; and your family knows exactly what you’re burdened about. What must you do now? Friends, reflect on our verse today, and spend some time letting that sink in. Our God’s not dead, and you’ve given your problem to Him. You’ve asked Him to hear your prayer, know your concern and please heal your body, or guide you into saying the right thing to your relatives in need of a Savior. But wait a moment, we can all hear doubt in your mind. In our Scripture verse, the king and the people were told that God had responded to their prayers (their pleading), so they needn’t worry any longer. What’s different with you? Oh that’s right, God is not doing what you told Him to do. Child of God, may we all be reminded today that our God is not a puppet. Yes, He still a prayer answering God, and yes, He will guide you in the right path. But always be reminded that we are asking God for His will to be done. Let me share a story from a friend, that may serve to illustrate my point. He had a relative who had been in a bad wreck. The family prayed endlessly that God would keep this young man alive. They had their church join them in the same request of God. Years later in reflection, my friend questioned if they prayed the right way for this younger family member, as the young adult lived many more years, but was a mere vegetable. Friends when we plead with God in prayer, let’s please be willing to ask God for His perfect will in the situation, and as His obedient children, let’s respect His decision. It may be right in line with what we are asking, but I believe that the end result will cause us to shout praises to our Lord and King, for He alone is worthy of our praise. Can you imagine saying, in response to questions from an unsaved loved one, that God allowed my daughter to live; or God wanted this to happen in order to get our attention; or God wanted to remind us that He’s in charge, and what he responds to this problem or any other situation, is the best for them and us, plus it will ultimately create an atmosphere of praise to God for all that He will achieve through His touch on their life. Remember, the battle, the dire situation, the urgency of the situation we took to Him – it’s all His, once we are willing to surrender it to Him.

PRAYER:   Oh Lord, please give us the faith to surrender our needs to You at all times. Just like any kid would do to their parent, may we be willing to plead with You for our needs and concerns, and to always return thanks and offer up praises for Your response to our requests. Lord, help us to be so attuned to placing our needs before You, that when we come with the urgent, earth shattering cases, that You would recognize our voice, and that we would be comfortable in presenting yet another case at Your feet, knowing that You will hear our prayer and respond in Your way and in Your best timing. Please help us to be comfortable in surrendering our battles to You, knowing that You’re in charge of everything that goes on in this world, yet our humble request is a top priority to You, because of Your love for each of us. Thank You Lord for saving my soul! You’re my 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 Sebring, 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!

 

Careful to Pass on God’s Judgments

King Jehoshaphat appointed judges, and issued them the decree quoted in our text today. While we have judges today, and yes, we could easily ask our congress to apply this standard to their job description and court rooms, but I believe that God wanted me to apply this to all jobs that may bring along with it a sense of judging.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 19:6-7 (MSG)

TEXT:   “This is serious work; do it carefully. You are not merely judging between men and women; these are God’s judgments that you are passing on. Live in the fear of God—be most careful, for God hates dishonesty, partiality, and bribery.”

OBSERVATION:   King Jehoshaphat appointed judges, and issued them the decree quoted in our text today. While we have judges today, and yes, we could easily ask our congress to apply this standard to their job description and court rooms, but I believe that God wanted me to apply this to all jobs that may bring along with it a sense of judging.

APPLICATION:   Never having been a judge, I believe it would be easy to study the law, compare it to the offense brought before you, that has been confirmed by witnesses and attorneys, and then pass judgment based on the variances. I realize that it is not as simple as it appears, because I believe that a judge will also take into account all that he/she has been told about the individual, to help determine if the offense was habitual, premeditated, etc. But what I want us to think about today, is that we make judgment calls in our home, at work, in church leadership and even in our every day walk of life. We may tend to believe that most daily decisions, or every day judgment calls, are just a necessity in life that requires little thought. However, I would like for us to think for a moment about the parts of our being that’s responsible for making these calls – our bodies, our soul and our mind. Can you see where many other conflicting ideas muddy the waters for us? I believe that our decisions might be more sound, and appropriate for the kingdom, if we take today’s Scripture to heart. Think about it. If we fill our hearts with so much of God’s Word, don’t you know that our decisions and our judgment calls will be made based on what the Word of God teaches? Think about how others will look to God and question why He just passed certain judgment on their friend(s), instead of allowing them to live the rest of their lives being mad at the message deliverer, perhaps the judge, or even one of us. I’m afraid that when we stray, and when we are not saturated in the Word, we are way more apt to make decisions based on our own biases, prejudices, bribery, partiality or just plain dishonesty. May I encourage you friends, to seek God’s face daily, because you have no idea what sorts of decisions you will be forced to make today. Ask for the guidance and wisdom needed to be God’s representative today. Allow those decisions and judgment calls to be His, and not your human, selfish, sometimes twisted decisions that may be impacted by a number of personal biases.

PRAYER:   Lord God, we are quick to look at others and the decisions they make, but seldom do we reflect on the decisions we made personally, without involving You. Lord, if we are to represent You in every way in our lives, then it is important that we place our daily decision making before You and ask for Your wisdom, guidance and direction. You know the right answers and You can direct us to making right decisions, but Lord we need You daily to humble us so that we would be more dependent on You. I know that works totally opposite to our normal tendencies to be independent, but Lord we want You involved, and we want You to receive the honor and glory from Your people for all that You do. We surrender today to You Lord. May the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer! 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 Sebring, 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!