Prayer – Our Most Powerful Tool!

Unlike many of us that may spend less than 3 minutes in prayer, this whole chapter in Daniel highlights most of the content of Daniel’s conversation/prayer to God, for he was burdened for his people and his land and he knew that the only one who could do anything about the stubbornness of hearts, would be the Eternal God. Daniel took God seriously at His Word, that ‘If my people, who are called by my name, would humble themselves and pray, then God……’.  True to His Word, Daniel found out that the minute he humbled himself, opened his mouth in prayer, then God began acting in response!

Post Date:

Friday, 2018-06-08
SCRIPTURE

From:

Daniel 9:20-23 (TLB)

Text:

20 Even while I was praying and confessing my sin and the sins of my people, desperately pleading with the Lord my God for Jerusalem, his holy mountain, 21 Gabriel, whom I had seen in the earlier vision, flew swiftly to me at the time of the evening sacrifice 22 and said to me, “Daniel, I am here to help you understand God’s plans. 23 The moment you began praying a command was given. I am here to tell you what it was, for God loves you very much. Listen and try to understand the meaning of the vision that you saw!
OBSERVATION:
Unlike many of us that may spend less than 3 minutes in prayer, this whole chapter in Daniel highlights most of the content of Daniel’s conversation/prayer to God, for he was burdened for his people and his land and he knew that the only one who could do anything about the stubbornness of hearts, would be the Eternal God. Daniel took God seriously at His Word, that ‘If my people, who are called by my name, would humble themselves and pray, then God……’.  True to His Word, Daniel found out that the minute he humbled himself, opened his mouth in prayer, then God began acting in response!
APPLICATION:
A question often asked in Christian circles is: ‘Does God really listen to my prayers, and is it possible that He would ever act on ‘my prayers’? Fortunately we don’t control God, or the prayers that He chooses to answer. But as for our prayers, I would suggest a few tips that I believe Scripture teaches:

  • Don’t go to God as a stranger out of desperation. Go before Him reverently, acknowledging that He is God (in charge) and that you are His humble servant, saved only by His grace, in need of Him, once again today/this week/etc;
  • When no personal relationship exists, it is very challenging to have a sincere, meaningful conversation with someone – especially God. Relationships flourish when there is ongoing conversation between both parties; when there’s giving sacrificially to the other party, and receiving humbly from that party. God is no different, honor His Word by reading it daily and allowing God to speak with you and direct your paths; Pray to God about everything and be willing to accept His response, that may not always agree with our personal desire;
  • Be willing to act on what God directs you to do – obedience;
  • Learn to go before God looking at His face, and not for His outstretched hand. Yes, I believe He wants to give you the desires of your heart, but looking into His face will encourage you to worship Him and recognize Him for who He is. Then if you are in need of something, you will recognize that you are placing your most private thoughts and most urgent needs before a very worthy God.

God does answer prayer, friends. Do your part to ensure that you are asking of a very personal God with whom you have a very deep relationship with. Daniel did this and God acted immediately. Our God’s not dead, He’ll do the same for you!

PRAYER:
Lord, thank You for answered prayer! Thank You Lord for accepting me as Your precious child, and for Your continued care and answers to my prayers. On behalf of all who may read this devotional and myself, please continue to work on us with building a closer and stronger relationship with You. I believe that You care about every little concern of ours, so I pray that we will present our cares of all sizes at Your feet and seek Your will and Your blessing. Thank You for being there in so many ways for Daniel and thank You for the promise that You will be with us always. Praise to our wonderful 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!

The Cost of Disobedience

The Israelites complained about there not being any water to drink, and that soon they and their animals would die of thirst. Moses and Aaron petitioned before God for relief to this problem, and they were given specific directions on how God would miraculously produce water from a huge rock. However, pride set in and Moses decided to add some theatrics to the miracle by smiting the stone with his rod. God still allowed water to spring from the stone, but He dealt severely with Moses and Aaron.

Post Date:

Thursday, 2018-06-07
SCRIPTURE

From:

Numbers 20:12 (ERV)

Text:

12 But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “You did not trust me enough to honor me and show the people that I am holy. You did not show the Israelites that the power to make the water came from me. So you will not lead the people into the land that I have given them.”
OBSERVATION:
The Israelites complained about there not being any water to drink, and that soon they and their animals would die of thirst. Moses and Aaron petitioned before God for relief to this problem, and they were given specific directions on how God would miraculously produce water from a huge rock. However, pride set in and Moses decided to add some theatrics to the miracle by smiting the stone with his rod. God still allowed water to spring from the stone, but He dealt severely with Moses and Aaron.
APPLICATION:
I wonder how guilty we are of praying for someone, seeing God answer our prayer, then allowing the individual to praise us beyond anything we deserve. As we read God’s Word, and encounter Him daily, we must always remember that He created us to worship Him and to lift Him up. God sent His own Son so that we may again recognize His love for us and have even more reason to praise Him endlessly. When friends ask why we are so happy – it’s because the King of this universe loves us and cares for us, not because we lost weight, or our wife had a baby, or you just got married, although each of those things would place you on cloud 9 and smiling throughout the day, however when you know Jesus as Lord, and you’ve been praying for each of these things, your happiness is not necessarily in the results, but in the Savior who heard your cry and answered your prayer. Moses could have used yet another opportunity to give God praise in the presence of his people, but instead he made himself and his rod to be his hero. We are given opportunities to share the love of Christ when God answers our prayers, let’s aim at giving Him the glory friends, for without Him we are totally helpless. Remember, He is God, and we are merely His humble servants doing what He says, and what He gives us power to do. To God be the glory for all that He does through even us!
PRAYER:
Thank You heavenly Father for working through even us to carry Your message to the lost and discouraged. Thank You for also using us when You see the need for physical hands or bodies to be present for some to believe. Have Your perfect will in our lives Lord Jesus and bless as only You can, so that all glory goes to You. May we learn to always stand behind the cross, so that the world will see 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 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!

He’s Watching You

At the conclusion of the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon summed up the whole book with the above verses. That tells me that all that he wrote in 12 chapters could be summed up into these final words, so I believe they are intended as a recap to open our eyes, and open our ears to the words of this wise man. As these words are also God-ordained, I believe they are also critically important to our walk with Christ. Let’s dig in and meditate on these words……

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 (ERV)

TEXT:  …  The most important thing a person can do is to respect God and obey his commands, because he knows about everything people do—even the secret things. He knows about all the good and all the bad, and he will judge people for everything they do.

OBSERVATION:   At the conclusion of the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon summed up the whole book with the above verses. That tells me that all that he wrote in 12 chapters could be summed up into these final words, so I believe they are intended as a recap to open our eyes, and open our ears to the words of this wise man. As these words are also God-ordained, I believe they are also critically important to our walk with Christ. Let’s dig in and meditate on these words……

APPLICATION:   I would like for us to pull these verses apart so that we can look at the critical parts of what Solomon (and his Inspiration Giver – God) wanted to say to us. First of all let’s look closely how we are drawn to these words because of their importance. I bolded the words that drew my attention to this. Notice that we are told that we must respect God and obey Him. This was not a ‘perhaps it would be a good idea for you to respect and obey…’ So why might this be so important? Well, in 12 chapters Solomon not only shared words of wisdom with us, but he very carefully explained that even to those mundane things that we see and do every day, they are important in the Kingdom, so do them with all fervor and respect for God. In fact, our lives should be living examples of the God who created us, and His Son who set an example by living among us. The second important thing for us to remember is that God is not only with us while we attend church, but when He sends His Holy Spirit to live inside those who claim to be His followers, then that means that He is with us every second of every day. So whether it is at church, or any other place that we find ourselves, let’s remember that it’s then plural – for it’s us and God, not just ourselves. Does that cause you to be guilty about some of the places you used to visit? Perhaps. But oh what a joy it is to know that Jesus is as close as the mention of His name in every circumstance of life. You know, when you accept Jesus as Savior, he takes away the desire to visit places that might not bring glory to His name, or that may be embarrassing to the Holy Spirit that lives within us. Furthermore, if Jesus is your all-in-all why would you go to a place where He may not be welcomed? Are you looking for other joys to fulfill your lack of communion with the Lord Jesus Christ? Our verses confirm the existence of the Holy Spirit by declaring that He knows even those things that we’ve always kept a secret from the rest of the world. Friends, this is not meant to frighten you, but instead to give you peace of mind that when you invite Jesus to be Your Lord and Savior, He takes that very seriously and He sticks with you closer than a brother, mother or father. Remember, you’re His and He will love, protect, guide and comfort you through every circumstance of life. He is one that you can always count on! 

PRAYER:   Oh what a joy and a peace to know that my Savior loves us, even at times when it feels like no one cares for us. Lord we need You more each day, as trials here on this earth seem to increase with each passing day. Lord, please touch our hearts in such a way each day that we would be reminded of Your love, mercy, care and omnipresence. Lord this world needs You. In fact, many of my family and friends need you. Please continue to bless us, so that we may bless others, and as they are touched may they extend hands, arms and hearts out to the King of all kings and Lord of all lords. It’s You that deserve all of our praise and our ongoing worship, 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 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!

 

A Brand New You

Paul recognized that many of those he had led to the Lord were still living their same old lifestyles as before they were saved. Our verses today helped his church get back on track, and I believe that it will also help us to be all that God has called us to be.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Ephesians 4:22-24 (ERV)

TEXT:  22 You were taught to leave your old self. This means that you must stop living the evil way you lived before. That old self gets worse and worse, because people are fooled by the evil they want to do. 23 You must be made new in your hearts and in your thinking. 24 Be that new person who was made to be like God, truly good and pleasing to him.

OBSERVATION:   Paul recognized that many of those he had led to the Lord were still living their same old lifestyles as before they were saved. Our verses today helped his church get back on track, and I believe that it will also help us to be all that God has called us to be.

APPLICATION:   In today’s society, if a lady goes out and has her hair, fingernails and toenails done, and then come out of her bedroom all decked out in a new dress, we would know right away that she is going somewhere important, because she looks like a totally different lady than what you saw working in her yard yesterday. However, Paul is not talking about physical appearances, but instead about much deeper changes that occur in a person’s life. Changes that impact attitude; speech; willingness to help others; or speaking the truth in love. These are the types of changes that others will recognize as a change in you, without you having to tell them why you are so different today vs yesterday. I’m sure you heard the old adage, what goes in contributes to what comes out. In your old life, no doubt you enjoyed the things of this world, so your life was filled with its actions, attitudes and even its words. I believe that many of those things might be offensive to the Holy Spirit that now resides inside of you. Have you done something about that? God has provided His Word to us, so that we might not only have the best reading material in the world, but it is also our guide throughout this life; our encouragement as we reflect on the many scenarios where Jesus helped folk just like us thru issues just like ours; It is filled with example after example of how Jesus responded to various circumstances, and how His miracles encourage us that the same God of yesteryear is also the same God that we serve today! God has also opened up an avenue for us to have conversation with Him and to bring our needs and concerns to Him. In His Word, God spoke of His church and the importance of the church to Him. Mankind has formed many churches, so I would encourage you to connect with a good Bible Teaching and Preaching church near you, so that you may share in all that God is blessing you with, and in turn be blessed by all that God is blessing others with. Friends, let me encourage you to always chat with God about what you are doing or saying. Allow Him to help you control your life, so that the fruit of the Spirit may be evident in your life, that would result in God receiving all the glory and honor from all that you do or say!

PRAYER:   Lord, I believe it is harder for us to live in a way that mirrors Your attitude and actions today, than it was for the Ephesian church, because of all that is thrown at us by social media, television and other social events. Please prompt us to always seek Your will for our lives, and to try and determine what You would have done in various scenarios. Lord we want to bring glory to You, and we want our lives to reflect You in every way. We need You to help us be that kind of Christian, please? 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!

 

Blessed So That We May Bless Others!

Several points of encouragement in these verses: Our God is one who could heal more so than any drug or doctor we could recommend; He’s our Guide, our Partner and our Friend when we face hard times; We are worthy of His confidence in comforting others facing similar challenges to what God has brought us through. What a Mighty God we serve!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (MSG)

TEXT:  3-5 All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. We have plenty of hard times that come from following the Messiah, but no more so than the good times of his healing comfort—we get a full measure of that, too.

OBSERVATION:   Several points of encouragement in these verses: Our God is one who could heal more so than any drug or doctor we could recommend; He’s our Guide, our Partner and our Friend when we face hard times; We are worthy of His confidence in comforting others facing similar challenges to what God has brought us through. What a Mighty God we serve!

APPLICATION:   When we are going through challenging times in life, as all of us do at times, we either call a friend, or a trusted counselor, like a pastor or Christian Brother or Sister. Isn’t it rewarding to read what God inspired Paul to write in these verses, and be reminded that He is:

  • A God of all mercy – which means that He will listen to even us as we petition before Him. Think about it, what have we done to deserve anything from a perfect and holy God?;
  • A God of healing counsel – I believe that this encourages me that no matter what may be going on physically or mentally with us, God designed us and He therefore has the power to heal us, and/or give us counsel for whatever is needed. I love to attend a physician that has a photo showing Jesus looking over the doctor’s shoulder, indicating that He is counselling the doctor on what is best for us – the patients!
  • A God who stands by us, guides and protects us – I see this as not only being our pilot in our autos, but also as we walk or drive along dangerous roads, and as we wander in the woods or make decisions at work. Friends, with God by our side, what have we to fear?

The biggest takeaway for us, is that God will often cause us to walk alongside someone who could benefit from our experiences where God has been so gracious and loving to us. I recently had a doctor who was going in for back surgery, with the same facility that I had used about 8 times. His spirits were lifted as I shared first hand experience with him, and what he might expect along each step of his surgery and recovery. This is the same scenario as in any other experiences in life, for it opens the door for you to share how God has blessed you. I hope that you are looking for those opportunities and sharing as much as you could. Promoting the God we love is always a good thing friends!

PRAYER:   We are once again reminded of Your love Lord Jesus and Father God, and oh how sweet the name of Jesus is to a believer’s ear! There is no shortage of friends and family who need encouragement from us, and as You guide us to those individuals today dear Lord, please fill us with Your Holy Spirit so that we may have the words and gentleness of heart to share in a way that would draw that individual unto yourself. I ask these things in the powerful 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!

 

Reasons for Uncertanties

There are a few powerful lessons here in this Scripture, beginning with the audacity of the paralyzed man’s friends to get their friend in front of Jesus in spite of any obstacles that might present itself. The second thing is to notice that Jesus’ first priority was to meet the man’s greatest need – forgiveness of his sin. Let’s apply this to our challenges of today….

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Ecclesiastes 7:14 (TLB)

TEXT:  14 Enjoy prosperity whenever you can, and when hard times strike, realize that God gives one as well as the other—so that everyone will realize that nothing is certain in this life.

OBSERVATION:   When something becomes a certainty, we tend to take it for granted, because we believe that it will occur just like it did the last time. Depending on the season, or the time zone you’re in, we know when to expect daylight. So we build our schedules around that. So why would God indicated in His Word that there might be some uncertainty to things like that? Let’s meditate on that for a few moments….

APPLICATION:   Although Solomon was the wisest, and the richest, and the ruler of a large nation, yet he knew that only God was in control of most things that he depended on daily. We are much the same today friends, but let’s ponder what the reason might be for that. Beginning with the thought: what if I had control of everything for a day? Can you see disaster looming in the darkness, as I look for my backup alarm to awaken me in time to get that huge light (the sun) going? Oh, but where is the light switch again? What did you say? I must set this whole process in motion with the click of a finger? Oh boy, I wasn’t taught that little trick! I know, it sounds like I’m turning this whole thing into a humorous story. But do you begin to see the complexities of all this? Yet God has all of this under His powerful control! Think with me about a newlywed couple. The husband arrives home at 5pm each day, and the wife is seen opening the door to welcome him home. Then one day the husband is 5 minutes, 10 mins, 15 mins late and the wife goes into panic mode worrying that he may have gotten into an accident. And by the time he walked in the door after 30 minutes of deep agony, pacing the floors, calling friends along his route home, and on the verge of a nervous breakdown, the husband waltzes singing a tune he heard on the radio during his delayed drive home. If this type incident didn’t happen, would you soon begin to believe that you live in a bubble in this perfect world where everything is controlled to your liking? In case you haven’t figured this out yet friends, our spouse could be in the same boat as a friends spouse last week who never returned home because of a terrible wreck that took his life of the way to work. I believe that God shows us the uncertainty of things to make sure that we are ready to meet Him when He comes back to earth for His bride – the church. When will that be? Only God Himself knows, so the onus is on us to be ready at all times. Are you, my friend? Jesus could return at any moment to collect us, and because I want to be in that number, I have committed my life to the care of my Savior. If there is uncertainty in your mind, please click on the link ‘To Know Jesus’ in my Footnote and allow the Bible to speak truth into your mind and soul.

PRAYER:   Lord Jesus, thankfully we know that You created us; You accepted my request for forgiveness and saved my soul; You’ve shown me in Your Word, that You have prepared a new home called Heaven for other saints and myself; and I believe that You might even be waiting with opened arms waiting for my arrival to my eternal home! Regardless of the time lines on any of these events, I have a future that You have promised to those who have accepted You as Lord. I am standing by in deep anticipation, praise the all powerful name of Jesus, my Savior!  Lord, please open the eyes and hearts of my readers. Please call those to You, who will read this and push it aside because they can’t fathom this connection with You while here on earth. However I pray that You will give Joy and everlasting happiness to those who know, without a shadow of doubt that they belong to You as defined by Scripture. As I look forward to That Day, please bless me as Your servant and witness to others, 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!