The Importance of ‘Seeking’ God

In our 2 verses today we could see a recap of the reign of king Rehoboam. It seems like a sad, almost failed attempt at ruling a nation, because he tried to do it on his own terms and couldn’t really see a need for God. It’s really sad, because thousands of citizens probably lost their lives because of his stubbornness and disregard for the God of all nations. As we meditate on this, I believe we are bound to see a lot of similarities in our rulers today, and I believe you will see where they might be almost as bad in our stubbornness.

Friday, 2020-02-28

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 12:13-14
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: 13-14 King Rehoboam regrouped and reestablished his rule in Jerusalem. He was forty-one years old when he became king and continued as king for seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city God chose out of all the tribes of Israel as the special presence of his Name. His mother was Naamah from Ammon. But the final verdict on Rehoboam was that he was a bad king—God was not important to him; his heart neither cared for nor sought after God.

OBSERVATION: In our 2 verses today we could see a recap of the reign of king Rehoboam. It seems like a sad, almost failed attempt at ruling a nation, because he tried to do it on his own terms and couldn’t really see a need for God. It’s really sad, because thousands of citizens probably lost their lives because of his stubbornness and disregard for the God of all nations. As we meditate on this, I believe we are bound to see a lot of similarities in our rulers today, and I believe you will see where they might be almost as bad in our stubbornness.

APPLICATION: I am reminded that our God created all things, and He knows all things – even before we have the slightest inkling that something could, or will occur. I am also reminded how silly it is of us not to seek God and to understand His ways and His message to us, so that we might do it right the first time, with His help and direction. Based on the Word of God, I believe that God is looking at us with outstretched hands waiting for us to surrender to self and seek His perfect will for our lives. Being a father to a young adult, I could appreciate how it must feel for God to look at us and see some of the decisions that we make, and the stupid actions that often follow, because it is easy for me to feel the same frustration when my years of experience here on earth has helped me gain insight into the decisions that my daughter might fumble over. Jeroboam knew of God, but he allowed his world to dictate and influence him into making decisions that were based on popular belief, instead of based on the foundation of an all-knowing God. What are you seeing in your country leaders today? Do you suppose they are making decisions based on the direction and knowledge of our God? What about you? What might your life’s recap sound like? Any different to that of Rehoboam? Based on my life’s experiences, I am convinced that God not only listens to our cry for help and for direction, but I have found where God looks out for His prayed up saints. For you see, I have reflected back on decisions that I made and realized that I never had opportunity to seek God’s voice on, before making certain decisions. Yet I could see from the outcome that He was there all the time. Believe me friends, I’m not a saint, but having asked God to direct my day, and help me make sound decisions that are pleasing to Him and in line with His perfect will, I am just crazy enough to believe that He will honor the prayers of His people in His time. And I know that His timing is always perfect. Throughout the chapter in which our focal verses come from, we could see where God honored His people when He saw them humble themselves before Him, but He allowed attack and destruction when their leaders led them on an ungodly path. Our God is a just God, and He will not allow sin or disobedience to have their way in the lives of His people. Just as good parents do today: when their children, who they bore and raised according to their house rules, decide to walk away from their direction, they will allow them to feel the brunt of bad decisions. However, obedient children who are willing to follow the direction of their parents, will be honored, lifted up, praised, and looked after for life. Our God is superior to our earthly parents in every way! What an awesome God we serve! Do you know Him, my friend? If not, or if you’re not sure, please read through my Footnote, and especially dig into the link ‘To Know Jesus’. Please be assured that your relationship is such that others will be impacted positively by your decisions and actions.

PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for the places you have entrusted us to serve in Your kingdom work. Please direct our paths so that others may be impacted positively for You, and may we never be a stumbling block in their path, nor misguided in any way as we minister in Your name. May we be faithful in listening, obeying, serving and leading, so that You might be recognized, praised and glorified in all that we say or do. AMEN!

PRAYER:

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 might 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 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 encourage you to attend my home church. 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!

Turn to God For Unconditional Love!

Thursday, 2020-02-27

Bible Reference: Titus 2:11–14
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: God’s readiness to give and forgive is now public. Salvation’s available for everyone! We’re being shown how to turn our backs on a godless, indulgent life, and how to take on a God-filled, God-honoring life. This new life is starting right now, and is whetting our appetites for the glorious day when our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, appears. He offered himself as a sacrifice to free us from a dark, rebellious life into this good, pure life, making us a people he can be proud of, energetic in goodness.

OBSERVATION: Ever heard a spouse, or a girlfriend or boyfriend say to their partner “And you did that for me?” You know – they are in shock that someone loves them enough to make a sacrifice on their behalf, just because they love them? It tends to put a whole new level of trust in that person, and a strong belief in your relationship! Suddenly you realize that they must truly love you! In our scripture today, Paul wants Titus to center his message around the love that Jesus showed for all who heard him preach. A message still very relevant today dear friend!

APPLICATION:  it seems like Paul felt it was important for the ministry of Titus that no matter what he felt the people already knew about Jesus, that he should remind them again that there is no secret about how much God loves them, and about the awesome sacrifice Jesus made at Calvary to prove His love for them. I feel compelled to share with you today the same message given to Titus, for it seems like depression in our friends and family is worsening, and impacting even children today. Don’t you realize friend that no matter how undeserving you may feel, there is only one place where you can look, or depend on for unconditional, everlasting love? It’s not on the internet, not in the nightclubs or local bars, or those friends who find answers in all the wrong places. God is ready to forgive you, and give you eternal life, filled with His wonderful love that is beyond human understanding or description? Don’t you know that you can be saved from your life of sin and disregard of God and take on a blessed, God-filled and God-honoring life? Don’t you know that this new life can begin right now, even though it may only be a sampling of the glorious life you will enjoy with Jesus when you leave this world that is so saturated with sin? Don’t you know that in spite of your present tendency to be mean and unforgiving towards others, that God will make you into a person energized in goodness? Friends, the above is not just vain promises that this Brother is offering to entice you into a relationship with God, although I wish there would be such an enticement possible, but I have merely expanded on the actual scripture written by Paul under the leadership and direction of the Holy Spirit. Please consider allowing that same Holy Spirit to guide you in your decisions today friend!

PRAYER: Father, You are merciful and so forgiving. For while we were still sinners, You went to the cross of Calvary as a statement of Your love for us, and faced public shame and disgrace by the same folk that You would later forgive them of their sin. Unfortunately we are no better than most of them that tortured You that dark day, because in spite of Your love for us, yet we openly sin and disgrace Your precious name. Please consider once again forgiving us of our sin dear Lord. Please go to the extreme once again to melt our hardened hearts and convince us of our sin and our need for the Savior. Lord, I pray that You would have Your perfect way in our lives today and in the lives of those that we love. May this be the day of salvation for many who will read this devotional today, I pray this in the precious 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 might 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 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 highly recommend to you 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 Knows Our Need for Reassurance

Ever been discouraged, because it seemed like the more you did in kingdom work, the more you felt like the people hated you and didn’t appreciate your sacrifice and hard work? As we read through the New Testament we could see that Paul was especially hit hard by the people he ministered to. In fact you might wonder, how on earth did he keep on going? Well, we see in today’s Scripture that the God he served, was also the God who cared for him and encouraged him. Meditate with me, for you might also need this reassurance as you participate in kingdom work here on earth.

Wednesday, 2020-02-26

Bible Reference: Acts 23:10-12
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: 10 The argument was beginning to turn into such a fight that the commander was afraid some evil people would tear Paul to pieces. So he told the soldiers to go down and take Paul away and put him in the army building. 11 The next night the Lord came and stood by Paul. He said, “Be brave! You have told people in Jerusalem about me. You must do the same in Rome.” 12 In the morning some evil people made a plan to kill Paul, and they took an oath not to eat or drink anything until they had killed him.

OBSERVATION: Ever been discouraged, because it seemed like the more you did in kingdom work, the more you felt like the people hated you and didn’t appreciate your sacrifice and hard work? As we read through the New Testament we could see that Paul was especially hit hard by the people he ministered to. In fact you might wonder, how on earth did he keep on going? Well, we see in today’s Scripture that the God he served, was also the God who cared for him and encouraged him. Meditate with me, for you might also need this reassurance as you participate in kingdom work here on earth.

APPLICATION: Have you ever been in doubt about whether you were doing God’s will, when suddenly you receive a revelation, or confirmation that you are convinced, came from God? This is what happened to Paul. His very life was threatened because of his honest words before the Sadducees and Pharisees. The commander saw this coming, so he locked Paul up, for his own protection. However, this gave the people more time to plan a strategy that would lead to murdering Paul. As for Paul though, the Lord came and stood by Paul’s side that night in captivity and reassured him of the next phase of his ministry. Now, did the Lord know what the evil ones was conjuring up in their minds, and their subsequent plans for the next day? Of course He knew, and therefore felt it was imperative to visit with Paul to comfort him (for He stood by Paul’s side), and to give reassurance about his next steps. Was it coincidence that this occurred the night before Paul’s nephew would run to him and tell him about a plot to kill him? Of course not, for Paul was reminded that in spite of what the world had planned to do with him, God’s will would be accomplished. Wow, now stop and imagine that, as children/servants of God, we have that same reassurance as Paul was given! So why do we fear? Why do we worry? Why do we take the concerns of this world on our shoulders? God is in control, no matter what the world or its leaders may have in mind! What a peace is ours dear friends! I plead with you that you join me in building this type relationship with our Savior, that no matter how dismal a situation may seem, we could rest easy in knowing that God is on your side, and He will accomplish His will in and/or through us. Although I believe that God wants to hear from His children on the desires of their heart, I believe that He is even more interested that we relax and allow Him to be God in our lives and in all of life’s situations. Have you ever stopped and said to yourself, “well I don’t know where to go from here, for I have done everything I know to do”? It is often times like these when we throw our hands up and decide to turn a situation over to God, isn’t it? I believe this lesson is teaching us to allow God in on the very ground level, and if things are about to get out of control, at least in our minds, that God would whisper reassurance to us. In what form might this come today? Friends, our communication lines today are just as they were in Paul’s day. Stay in close communion with God through His Word (the Bible), through prayer, and close communion and fellowship with other believers. Remember that old song, “God will make a way, where there seems to be no way”? Remind yourself of that when you have done all that He demands of you. Friends, let Him be God!

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

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 might 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 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 encourage you to visit my home church, 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 Is Attentive to The Prayers of His People

Tuesday, 2020-02-25

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 7:13-14
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: If I ever shut off the supply of rain from the skies or order the locusts to eat the crops or send a plague on my people, and my people, my God-defined people, respond by humbling themselves, praying, seeking my presence, and turning their backs on their wicked lives, I’ll be there ready for you: I’ll listen from heaven, forgive their sins, and restore their land to health. From now on I’m alert day and night to the prayers offered at this place. 

OBSERVATION: I believe that way too often we read into the Scriptures what we want to hear, or perhaps we might use the content of a verse to make sure that it is understood in the manner we feel it should read. Re-reading these frequently used verses might remind us of the emphasis God places on ‘HIS’ people. As we meditate on these verses today, please allow the Word of God to penetrate your heart and speak to your very soul.

APPLICATION: For so long I have heard reference to verse 14, but when you read the preceding verses, especially verse 13, it becomes very evident that God is saying that He may very well withhold blessings from us when we stray, or when we sin. However, He also tells us that when we pray, and when we repent of our sin, and when we turn away from our sin, then praise God, He will hear our prayer, forgive us of our sin and make us (our land) prosperous again. It seems so out of sorts the way that we try to make this work. God is the Master and He dictates how it will work. We are the servants, the followers, the beggars, we need to listen and obey, to see the results of God’s response to our prayers! I don’t believe that these verses were intended that the lost might awaken from their sin, surrender their lives to God and then see Him work miraculously in their lives, although I believe that God is very capable of doing that. I have the distinct impression that God told Solomon that the new temple was dedicated in service for the work of the Lord. However, he should let the people know that there may come a time when God may choose to strike their farms, or even send a plague among his people. This is not a time for the people to strike out against the evildoers or the Satan followers, but rather it is a time that believers should look to God and seek His forgiveness for their sin, their pettiness, their ugliness to their family, friends and coworkers. A time that they must look inward and face God in shame for their lack of obedience to His commands, their lack of caring about the elderly and those in need, their shame for keeping the King of all kings bottled up inside – their sin, yes be sorry for their own sin, and to seek the Master for forgiveness and for strength to serve Him, worship Him, and exemplify Him in ever fiber of their being. Friends, I believe that God is saying that we are to look inward as a church, and get our act together, so that we might represent Him honorably before a lost world. In other words, let’s get inside the four walls of our churches squeaky clean before we feel like we could be an influence to those on the outside. Many might respond that they are not dirty, they are not evil, they don’t hate others, but let me remind you that we are to compare ourselves to, and aim to live a perfect life like, the only begotten Son of God – Jesus our Lord. When you do that, can you see where God might want us to clean up our act? God told Solomon, that when we – the church, do what we are called to do, then He will hear from heaven and bless our land. This reminds me of an old Christian song, ‘It’s me, it’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer. It’s not my brother or my sister, but it’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer’. Fellow believers, join me in drawing closer to God today. I believe that He wants to bless our land, but He said that He wants us to have our house in order before He does so. Let’s not be a stumbling block in the good work of the Lord.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, I pray that my readers will join me today in being obedient to Your precious Word. May we humble ourselves, turn from our wicked ways, pray, and seek Your face, like we seriously want a move from You, and like we seriously want You to heal our land of its sin, its deceases, its wickedness, and its lack of desire for our King. Please heal us – Your church, and draw us unto Yourself, so that You may eventually heal our land. We are tired of the crime and many sins that are evident and that seem to worsen every day, and we are frightened by the unknown deceases for which our doctors fail to find a cure. Our land is in much need of a touch from You oh God. Please begin by healing Your children – even today, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might 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 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 encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

Paul’s Story Vs Our Story

Monday, 2020-02-24

Bible Reference: Acts 22:7-11
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ I asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ The voice said, ‘I am Jesus from Nazareth whom you are persecuting.’ Those who were with me did not understand the voice, but they saw the light. 10 I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ The Lord answered, ‘Get up and go to Damascus. There you will be told about all the things I have planned for you to do.’

OBSERVATION: Like Paul, we have a ‘story’ that we should share with folk. Often in conversations we step up to the plate and tell a story about an incident in our lives that we believe is far greater than anything said so far by anyone else. Imagine the quiet that would fill the room if, in the middle of discussions about sports, or hunting or family, we jump in and share our story about our conversion? This is basically what happened with Paul!

APPLICATION: There are several miraculous things about this experience shared by Paul:
~ It was Personal – Paul didn’t share a story with the group arresting him about a friend of his, or a story he had read in ancient transcripts, he shared his story;
~ Recognized it was God speaking – Paul’s first response to the voice he heard was “Who are you, Lord?” When God gets our attention, we know that it is divine, holy and very personal;
~ It was transformational – Paul, a persecutor of Christians and a destroyer of churches, immediately recognized it was God, and instead of cursing God, as he had been doing, he asked for further instructions!
~ It was shared without regard to the place or occasion – Paul didn’t wait until he was in the synagogue, or among fellow believers, or until it was church time. In fact, this seemed like a very odd time to share his testimony, but Paul shared his story anyway!

I believe that the whole purpose of Paul sharing his story was that his captors’ eyes would not only be opened to the fact that he was a fellow Roman citizen, but also that they might hear, understand and come to know the God that touched, and ministered through, Paul. He was a true evangelist, both in the pulpit and out of it. Among all the confusion and excitement of calming the crowds and making an arrest, Paul asked for a moment to share his story. Wow! Friends, God can use us for His glory in any circumstance that He chooses, if we let Him. But it will only be impactful if we share our story for His ultimate glory and not ours. So why do you suppose that we don’t do that more often, friend? We need to do this as often as we can, because we have no promise of a future moment with that individual or group that we are meeting with. Don’t be shy or afraid, God will never lead you into a situation that He will not help you through! Allow Him to do His great work through you!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, in Your precious and holy name, I come humbly before You to first say thank You for getting my attention back in 1976 and leading me to accept You as Lord of my life. Thankfully, You have since lead me through many situations and given me ample opportunities to share Your saving power with many people. Please forgive me for lost opportunities, and give me wisdom, humility, boldness and power to share my story with many more folk in all walks of life, so that others might see the glow of Your presence in and through me, and subsequently want to also accept You as Lord. Father God, it is only through Your continued grace that the wicked and lost of this earth can come to know a holy and righteous God, so I ask that You touch lives that I interface with today so that in something that I might say or do, You might impact their lives for Your ultimate glory. I ask all this in the name above all names, King of all kings, Your one and only Son, 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 might 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 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 highly recommend to you 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!

What We Deserve

I know it would be easy to pray that God would give a Brother or Sister what they deserve, but would you dare pray that about yourself? We ask God for a lot of things, but as we meditate today, let us consider what things would be like, if God truly gave to us what we deserve.

Sunday, 2020-02-23

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 6:29-31
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: 29 … if your people Israel pray about their troubles or sorrow, raising their hands toward this Temple, 30 then hear from heaven where you live, and forgive. Give your people what their actions deserve, for you alone know each human heart. 31 Then they will fear you and walk in your ways as long as they live in the land you gave to our ancestors.

OBSERVATION: I know it would be easy to pray that God would give a Brother or Sister what they deserve, but would you dare pray that about yourself? We ask God for a lot of things, but as we meditate today, let us consider what things would be like, if God truly gave to us what we deserve.

APPLICATION: I have a friend who, when asked how he’s doing, will always respond ‘better than I deserve’. That in itself is a very sobering statement, as the individual realizes that should God bless in accordance with what he may have done or said, he would be in big trouble. You know, similar to what we do as parents for our children, for we spoil them with way more than they deserve. Another example that might help us bring this idea to the forefront of our minds is: I have friends that will often make reference to the pastor and how he is not ‘feeding’ them richly from the Word of God. My first question is to ask how much did they pray for the pastor before the service? I will often receive a blank steer, to which I would respond ‘then you got as much from the sermon as you prayed for’. In our Scripture, Solomon prayed that his people would receive forgiveness when they prayed, but he also prayed that, in order for his people to be awaken and actually walk in the ways of the Lord, that they should receive what they deserve. Be reminded dear friends, that you might fool some of the people some of the time, but God knows your heart, and if He decides to bless in response to what He knows, that will not only include the good things that other friends see us do, but God could also reach into our thoughts and actions that others will never see. A real scenario in too many churches revolve around members who stop giving because a decision was made by the church leaders to go down a line of work that the giver disagreed with. I have good friends who will not attend certain services at church, because they are not in agreement with the servant sent to them by God, to minister to his people in our community. What if God blessed these friends in response to their actions against God? Friends, please don’t misunderstand me. I believe that what God did at Calvary, and what He continues to bless us with, is from a heart filled with love like we could never imagine. Do we always deserve it? Absolutely not. But our God is one who not only see our actions, hears our words spoken in love and in anger, but He also knows our very thoughts. Please join me in desiring to worship Him; honor Him in our praises and thanksgiving; and loving those that He created who could sometimes be just as evil-minded as we are. I believe that when we decide to depend on God alone, love Him with all our heart, and look forward in great anticipation to His return, then perhaps we could look beyond the pettiness of everyday strife, envy, revenge and hatred, so that we might fix our eyes on Jesus, our true and everlasting deliverer and author of our faith. Wouldn’t it be awesome for our Father to look at His creation in love, and see that we seek nothing more than to return our love to Him in all that we are and all that we say? God has prepared a home for us. Let us live like children of that heavenly kingdom, and not as its greatest adversary.

PRAYER: Thank You Father for creating us just like You. Thank You for giving us the freedom to live like You intended, even among a people who will try in every way to distract us from that perfect path. Lord, today many of us will decide whether to attend church or not. Many of us will be strong enough to respond in love to those that may deceitfully use us, while many will strike back in revenge and with intent to harm. While I want to pray like David that you might respond to us as we deserve, I also realize how serious that might be. Please open our eyes Lord, so that we might once again be reminded of Your love, Your power to forgive, and Your desire to bless us beyond anything we deserve. Please help us to desire that kind of love, and grant us the power to forgive and be strong in our faith. May others see Jesus in our character, our will, our words and especially in the way that we love others. May You be glorified in and through us 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 might 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 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 encourage you to attend my home church. 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!

Teach Me Your Ways, Oh Lord

Way too often we claim to know more than almost any other person around us, and we are not afraid to let everyone know that! David was a man after God’s own heart, yet in our Scripture today, he asked God to teach him His ways, and to help him center his heart towards praising His holy name. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let us consider what this might look like to those that we come into contact with each day.

Thursday, 2020-02-20

Bible Reference: Psalm 86:11-12
Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: 11 Lord, teach me your ways,
    and I will live and obey your truths.
Help me make worshiping your name
    the most important thing in my life.
12 My Lord God, I praise you with all my heart.
    I will honor your name forever!

OBSERVATION: Way too often we claim to know more than almost any other person around us, and we are not afraid to let everyone know that! David was a man after God’s own heart, yet in our Scripture today, he asked God to teach him His ways, and to help him center his heart towards praising His holy name. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let us consider what this might look like to those that we come into contact with each day.

APPLICATION: Ask anyone what they see in you and you will receive multiple answers. Some may be afraid to ‘crush’ you with the truth, while some may not want to ‘swell your head’ by telling you how great you are, yet others will tell you what they think you want to hear in order to keep the peace! I got the impression from this Psalm that right in the middle of this sweet encounter with God, David may have simply emptied himself of everything one might recognize as a ‘David’ characteristic and instead he asked God to just teach him, fill him, and show him the right way. Friends, I doubt if you are very different to me, so if we are honest with ourselves, we tend to show so much of ourselves, and desire so much attention, that it probably becomes very challenging for anyone to really see where our inspiration, direction and help comes from. I looked at this passage in various translations, so the exact words may differ a little from the version that you have in front of you. However, it is obvious that David acknowledged to God that he preferred knowing what God wanted, over anything that he felt like he already knew to say or do. I believe that a follower of Christ who allows the overflow of Jesus’ love and words to go forth from his/her lips, or through every action, results in family and friends seeing Jesus, instead of the old sinful man who is poisoned every day by the ugliness of this old world. Friends, unsaved people need Jesus, not more of you or me. Lord help us if the world becomes entrenched with more of us, for we are sinners saved only by the grace of God. David’s additional plea from God, was that He might help him to prioritize worshiping Him. Now we might quickly retort that this is not an issue for Christians today, right? Let me just add that I would disagree with you. For I believe that we should pray just like David, that God might instill a desire to make worshiping Him a priority in our lives. Notice I used the word ‘worship’ and not ‘church’. Lord, please help us if we only worship You on those occasions that we go to church. Some of us do that on occasion to satisfy a nagging mom or spouse. Some of us do that as a ritual habit that we did since childhood. While some of us attend church because our friends, or our constituents attend a certain church. I believe that when we pray the type prayer that David prayed, we might be asking God to help us recognize Him and worship Him as we start our day, for God gave us a comfortable place to lay our head, and He kept us safe throughout the night. We might worship Him for the food that He provided so that we might stay healthy. We might worship Him for blessing us with a job and a great bunch of people to work with. For all the beautiful sunsets, sunrises, and landscapes that we have always taken for granted, we may be encouraged by the Holy Spirit to give God thanks for these, and just one more reason to worship and praise His holy name. Friends, when we worship God throughout our daily lives, wouldn’t it be natural that we would have a super-charged worship service when we meet together each week with other believers?

PRAYER: Precious Lord, how patient You must be with Your creation, thank You. Considering that You created us, provided everything possible for us, and loved us enough that you showed evidence of that on the cross at Calvary, how shameful that we must now ask You in much the same way as David did, to help us make worshiping You a priority in our lives. Please Lord, open our eyes so that we could see the wonder of Your love. Please remove the scales from our eyes so that we might see Your handiwork and be reminded of Your goodness, so that we will have every reason to worship You in everything that we do or see. 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 might 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 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 encourage you to attend my home church. 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!

We Are Worth Dying For!

Paul tried to tell the church leaders at Ephesus how important their job was, and he not only based that importance on his dedication and hard work, but he also explained that the value of the church to God was such that He was willing to have His Son die for it. Many of my readers are probably workers in the church, or involved in ministry in one way or another. How seriously are you taking that work? Ever have to sacrifice for those whom you are serving in God’s church?

Wednesday, 2020-02-19

Bible Reference: Acts 20:28
Translation:  Amplified Bible (AMP)

Bible Text: 28 Take care and be on guard for yourselves and for the whole flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you as overseers, to shepherd (tend, feed, guide) the church of God which He bought with His own blood.

OBSERVATION: Paul tried to tell the church leaders at Ephesus how important their job was, and he not only based that importance on his dedication and hard work, but he also explained that the value of the church to God was such that He was willing to have His Son die for it. Many of my readers are probably workers in the church, or involved in ministry in one way or another. How seriously are you taking that work? Ever have to sacrifice for those whom you are serving in God’s church?

APPLICATION: Paul was passionate about the ministry and had traveled to many places sharing the story of Jesus with all who would listen. It is apparent from this Scripture that Paul felt very responsible for the work that he started, and as he shared with the leaders being charged with continuing the work, we could easily tell that it was difficult for Paul to pass along this responsibility. However, I was reminded of a current day parallel to what Paul faced. Think about a new mom who is about to leave her child at the daycare for the first time. There is usually a lot of concern that the daycare workers would know what to expect from this new infant, and there would be detailed steps for them to follow, to make sure that the child is well taken care of after the mother goes on to work. The mother is looking for very caring attention, with responses that would assure her that her child is being left with professionals who would take the same care with the newborn as the mother would do. I love the extra commentary added by the Amplified Bible, for it helps us to really understand the heart of Paul for the church. So of course this made me think about the church today. God uses the foolishness of preaching and the worship of His people to draw men to Himself. Then He turns to His caretakers in the church – the pastor, elders and other church leaders and teachers, and He says like He did through Paul: Now take care of these dear children. Love on them; meet their needs; teach them my Word; correct them spiritually and lovingly, as needed; and don’t think twice about it, because I want you to remember how much I loved the church. And if you want to live just like me, then I believe you will want to love the church and do everything you can for it, just like I did. How obligated are you feeling about all that you do for the church? Don’t we often feel that way? But if we loved the church like Jesus did/does, should there be a feeling of obligation; stress; ungratefulness; with no return to us for all we do and/or give? I believe that this Scripture should open our eyes to do all that we could for the church – all of it’s members, because we love the church just like Jesus does. We’re His followers, His imitators, and undeserved recipients of His love. Why shouldn’t we love the church unconditionally? This will result in Christ-Followers having a desire to be just like their Master. Is He your Master and Lord dear friend? Please read through my Footnote and visit the links that I have included, perhaps the information will be helpful for you as you seek to respond to Jesus after reading this Scripture and my blog today.

PRAYER: Oh to be like Jesus, is all that I ask of Him. To do His will, as reminded by Paul in this Scripture today, will not only bless my readers and myself, but as we react from the impact of God’s Word in our lives, others will come to know Him and want to serve Him faithfully in all that they do. Please speak to the hearts of Your children again today dear Lord. May we shine forth in our work for You without any feeling of obligation or remorse. May You be glorified in Your church today Lord, and may we complete the work You have assigned for us to do. 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 might 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 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 encourage you to attend my home church. 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 Lord Has Chosen You To…

In verse 10, particularly the words bolded above, you will see that David shared with his son Solomon that his lecture outlined in the preceding verses, was to draw his attention to the important task assigned to him by God – to build a temple. For many who will read this devotional, I believe that God is knocking on your heart to do a certain work for Him. Are you prepared spiritually and relationally with God to do His work? Think about this as we delve into these verses today dear friend.

Tuesday, 2020-02-18

Bible Reference: 1 Chronicles 28:9-10
Translation: The Amplified Version (AMP)

Bible Text: “As for you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father [have personal knowledge of Him, be acquainted with, and understand Him; appreciate, heed, and cherish Him] and serve Him with a blameless heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts and minds, and understands every intent and inclination of the thoughts. If you seek Him [inquiring for and of Him and requiring Him as your first and vital necessity] He will let you find Him; but if you abandon (turn away from) Him, He will reject you forever. Consider this carefully, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary. Be courageous and strong and do it.”

OBSERVATION: In verse 10, particularly the words bolded above, you will see that David shared with his son Solomon that his lecture outlined in the preceding verses, was to draw his attention to the important task assigned to him by God – to build a temple. For many who will read this devotional, I believe that God is knocking on your heart to do a certain work for Him. Are you prepared spiritually and relationally with God to do His work? Think about this as we delve into these verses today dear friend.

APPLICATION: David had continued the rule of his ancestors and did a fine job, with the help of God. Wouldn’t you tend to think that any of his sons would be well trained and suitable for the ongoing job as king of Israel? David had already began the awesome job of gathering supplies for the construction of the temple, so wouldn’t you think that either of his sons would be great for taking charge of the actual construction? This all makes sense to us, because this is the way that we generally make decisions today. We want the most recognized men in society on our boards and we want them to be prominent leaders in our churches. Would that be because they are the most godly and best ‘called’ men in our churches? What if we asked our church leaders today to take a month or two and consider all that David outlined in verse 9, before telling us if they feel called to the position we want them to fill? But this study is not intended to be a pick on church leadership. I feel like God spoke to me and had me consider how I might be doing with Him, based on verse 9. I wanted to share this with my readers, because I believe that God might be speaking to you about filling some of the vacant positions in His church. Are you prepared? Do you have personal knowledge of the Master? Are you personally acquainted with Him? Do you understand Him, appreciate Him, heed to His commands, and cherish Him with all your heart? Do you serve Him with a blameless heart and a willing mind, knowing that the Lord searches all hearts and minds, and understands every intent and inclination of our thoughts? Let’s all remember, that if we seek Him, by inquiring of Him, and requiring Him to be our first and vital necessity, He will let us find Him; but if we abandon, or turn away from Him, He will reject us forever. Solomon made an awesome king and was blessed immensely by God, so David’s advice paid off and encouraged his son in his relationship with God. Don’t you know that our churches will also be blessed beyond our understanding if we also followed this wise advice from David? God placed it in His special Book of Instructions just for us, because He wanted us to take note and follow in the footsteps of His servant Solomon. I pray that God’s Word will guide our every step today. Consider this carefully, for the Lord has chosen you to …… – what might He have chosen you to do, dear friend?

PRAYER: In the name of the Father, and in the name of the Son, Lord we come. We come asking for your people to receive Your Word, and to follow, as instructed, here on earth so that Your work might be accomplished in Your way and for Your glory. Lord, please help us not to allow this evil world to sneak into Your holy work in Your holy institution because of our lack of knowledge and commitment to You. Lord, we want Your work to continue in our midst. Please help us to not be stumbling blocks of that great work. We want to be just like You, Lord. May we seek Your will and follow Your commands, while allowing Your Holy Spirit to have His way in 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 might 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 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 encourage you to attend my home church. 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!

Make Room For God

While I believe there was a lot of value in these verses for Israel and the people of Jerusalem and Judah, I believe that this passage of scripture was included in God’s Word to us for self-application also.

Monday, 2020-02-17

Bible Reference: Jeremiah 4:1-3
Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

Bible Text: The Lord said: Israel, if you really want to come back to me, get rid of those disgusting idols.     2 Make promises only in my name, and do what you promise! Then all nations will praise me, and I will bless them. 3 People of Jerusalem and Judah, don’t be so stubborn! Your hearts have become hard, like unplowed ground where thornbushes grow.

OBSERVATION: While I believe there was a lot of value in these verses for Israel and the people of Jerusalem and Judah, I believe that this passage of scripture was included in God’s Word to us for self-application also.

APPLICATION:  I believe that God spoke to me as I read this, and had me substitute ‘Israel’ with the family and friends that I am praying for. At times when I feel distant from God, I believe that this passage also applies to me. Friends, I want you to read this carefully to make sure that you too understand that when God seems far away from you, it may be time to examine your lives and see what idols (priorities; things) you may have allowed to step in the way of your open communication and dependence on God. The kinds of things that get in our way might be:
* Work – for we can become so absorbed in our job that we have no quality time to spend with God;
* Church – yes, even church. We can become a slave to the work of the church and exclude our study and worship time with the Lord, for whom we are presumably working;
* Family – even though this item is of super importance, if we’re not careful, Satan can use this as a tool to keep us away from God. Let’s learn to take our family to church, instead of feeling an obligation to spend quality time with them on our Sabbath. After all, we had other opportunities during the week to spend time with them, but with Satan’s help, we chose not to. Men/dads this is our responsibility as God’s leader in our homes;
* Activities – we all know that the beach is always better on our Sabbath day than any other day of the week, right? But does it fit with God’s command of what we should be doing on our Sabbath?!!;
* Sports – why would we consider giving our time to sports on our Sabbath day rather than assembling ourselves together to worship God and to encourage one another?;
* Weariness – the toils of the week have left us so worn out that giving one hour of our time to refuel spiritually, and to give God thanks for our jobs, and the good health to do our jobs, seems to be challenging for us – at least until we lose our job or some other crisis comes up;

Friends, I’m not judging, for that is God’s job. I merely listed a few things that may cause us to think about the possible idols that stand in our way of communion with God. May I encourage you to examine your own life and see if there is anything that distracts you in your walk with the Lord? Be honest with God as you consider this, for He knows your heart and your very circumstances, and He is willing to help you tear down those idols, so that you may be drawn closer to Him. Remember, sin must be removed from our heart, before our hearts will be opened for God’s mighty hand. The good news with this whole thing is that others will follow us, and God will bless us! Read verse 2 again! Imagine, your actions might actually revolutionize the world!!

PRAYER: Father, You know our hearts and You know our thoughts and our schemes. It is so unfortunate that in spite of Your goodness to us, we allow Satan to feed our thoughts, that often leads us to scheme and find reasons to not find time in the Word, in prayer and even church attendance. Please forgive us for our ingratitude and our unfaithfulness. You sacrificed Your very Son for our salvation, yet we find it challenging to make time to spend with You and/or Your people in corporate worship. Often this is just not a priority in our lives. Please forgive us oh Lord. Please touch the hearts of Your children who will read this devotional today, may they also be made aware of ‘idols’ that have become obstacles in their walk with You. Lord Jesus, we respect You and all that You stand for, however if we are to be true and honest representatives of Yours, we too must imitate you in every aspect of our lives. We can only do this with Your help, direction and wisdom oh Lord, and we humbly seek that today. For this is my humble and gracious plea before You oh God, in the name of Your Son 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 might 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 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 highly recommend to you 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!