DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-06-19
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: 2 Corinthians 5:16-17
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)
BIBLE TEXT: 16 So stop evaluating Christians by what the world thinks about them or by what they seem to be like on the outside. Once I mistakenly thought of Christ that way, merely as a human being like myself. How differently I feel now! 17 When someone becomes a Christian, he becomes a brand new person inside. He is not the same anymore. A new life has begun!
OBSERVATION: Ever heard someone referred to as ‘one whose life has been totally changed from the inside out’? What about ‘a leopard who could never change their spots’? Or perhaps ‘that young man has a demon inside of him and I don’t know that anyone could get through to his heart’? I am inviting you to meditate with me today on the Scriptures, where Paul is telling his church at Corinth, and God is subsequently telling us, that when His Holy Spirit entrees into the heart of man, ‘A New Life Begins’! This is exciting, and something each of us would want to see in some of our friends who seem so hard to reach for Jesus.
APPLICATION: I love to sit and watch the TV show ‘Fixer Upper’! It seems about impossible, the transformation that an old house that could easily be chosen by many to knock down and destroy, yet the hosts of the show will catch a glimpse of what they could do to transform that old house into a very desirable and valuable home for a new owner! But what about you and I? With all of our imperfections and sin, yet when we stand before the God of this universe, who is perfect in every way, yet He is able to reach out His hand and, soften our hardened hearts and call us to Himself! Friends, when you think about our God, I would strongly encourage you to lay aside such words as: a). Coincidence – for our God is best at strategizing our appointment with Him. This might be through you bumping into an old pastor unexpectedly in the grocery store without realizing that he had been praying for you through recent trials in your life; b). Good luck – you know, the kind where we attribute the recent gift to be just out of mere luck, while mom saw your need and was praying hard that God would meet that need for you! Or c). A hardened heart was melted – you had gotten so hardened about God after you felt like He took your spouse away from you at a time when your children needed their parent most. Yet recent circumstances have been very obvious that God had sought you out and been calling you to Himself very loud and clear. Friends, from the very beginning, when God created us in His own image, He wanted us to be just like Him, and He wanted us to center our lives and our worship around the One who created us. By placing us on this earth, we quickly adopted its sinful ways. But this didn’t catch God by surprise, He already had a plan in place to redeem us of our sin, if we sought after it. This redemption, or salvation, is meant to cleanse us of our sin and return us to ‘like new’ condition. In fact, people would look at us and wonder if it’s the same person. The process would also cleanse our heart in such a way that we would no longer love the things of that would lead us into temptation, nor to lie in order to get our own way. In fact, our contacts may become confused between us and the Savior of the Word that they had heard so much about. Friends, I believe the Scripture is telling us that God did not create us to make us comfortable in the ‘old skin’ of sin and shame. Instead He has already prepared a home for those of us that listen to God, seek His forgiveness and allow Him to make us ’like new’! I made that decision many years ago, and my aim every day is to imitate Jesus in every way. For those who haven’t surrendered to this truth yet, please know that you have no assurance as to the day God will take you out of this world. To know Him intimately will assure you a place in heaven. To do nothing is accept the ongoing kingship of the world – Satan – And his domain is a place called Hell. The decision is yours my friend. My prayer is that I will see each of you in Heaven at the throne of my Savior and Lord!
PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, thank You for Your wondrous love for each of us. You have opened the doors to heaven, and You have shown us the necessary steps to accept Your precious gift and walk through those doors. Although many who will read this devotional have made this most important decision to accept You as Lord and Savior, I know that many have procrastinated or have made many other excuses to explain the unimportance of this. Please speak through Your Word today. Please use this blog to open the minds and hearts of many that will happen across this. Please soften hardened hearts so that right decisions will be made, even today. Thank You Lord for saving my soul. May my life be an inspirations to others that will serve to open blinded eyes and soften hearts towards the truth of Your Word. 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!
Praise and Thanksgiving: I am in recovery from a very serious and intensive surgery on June 9th, and thanks to God Almighty and my readers, I am doing especially well. Each day is a journey, but I seem to feel stronger and more alert to seek God’s face; open His precious Word and read it with with a sense of clarity. I will try to continue as often as I could, but would ask that you pray extra hard for me over the next few weeks. I believe God wants His children to hear from Him and receive direction for the path He would have us take each day, so that He might work in the lives of those that we come into contact with. Be blessed Brothers and Sister as we continue to meditate together through this medium.