Do You Listen To and Care About Others?

Don’t you feel foolish after spending time explaining your deepest feelings, only to find out that your audience were either not paying attention to you, or could care less about your problems? In our Scripture, Jesus shared how one of His closest allies would betray Him. Instead of the disciples feeling apathy for Jesus and looking for ways to love on Him, they instead started bickering among themselves about their personal interests. Are you guilty of this? Let’s try to allow the Word deep within us as we think on these things today?

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2021-10-13
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Luke 22:21-24
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: 21 The one who will betray me is here at the table with me! 22 The Son of Man will die in the way that has been decided for him, but it will be terrible for the one who betrays him!” 23 Then the apostles started arguing about who would ever do such a thing.
24 The apostles got into an argument about which one of them was the greatest. 

APPLICATION: There are times when we share from the heart, and instead of our friends showing how much they care, instead they immediately start up a new conversation, perhaps even with other people in our circle. Kind of like, totally changing the subject. It’s enough for us to throw our hands up as a sign of not even bothering to repeat our words or ask for help from our friends. So how should this impact us? I believe that we could expect to be treated, as we treat others. But if God directs us to share freely with those in our circle, we must strive to overlook them ignoring us. I get the impression that the disciples were acting like our friends mentioned in the above scenario. Think about it. Jesus was intimately sharing with them what He knew would be happening to Him over the coming days, and instead of compassion for their Lord, it seemed like they got in to arguing over different matters that they felt were important. First, over who of their bunch might be the one who would betray Jesus, and this could be somewhat related to what Jesus said, but secondly – who might be the greatest among them, which had absolutely nothing to do with Jesus’ betrayal, death and resurrection. Friends, it is so important that we listen to what others are saying, and also to what they may not be saying but trying to inform us about. I know the later part of what I just shared might sound confusing, but often friends who are considering suicide will speak in riddles to give us tips about what they are planning, but unless we are listening closely and looking straight at them to see the pain in their eyes, we may not receive their message and be able to help them overcome danger or hurt to themselves. A tender, compassionate heart that shows someone that you truly care, could possibly help a friend completely turn from destruction, to feeling cared for and loved. Hearing later that someone gave in to their temptation because they thought that no one cared, is an awful feeling to live with. I pray that you not only love people with your whole heart, but that they know you care, love and respect them. Don’t be distracted while a friend is talking, lean in and let them know that you care enough to listen and care about them. Be the eyes, hands and feet of Jesus while also having His heart – a heart for others who need Jesus. Our Lord said that He preferred that none would perish, but instead have eternal life. You could be a part of this great mission of our King!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Jesus loved and cared enough about His disciples that He didn’t want them to be caught unaware. Be sure that others know how much you care for them!

PRAYER: Lord, You not only showed us on the cross how much You love us, but You also show us every day that You care about us and especially about our soul’s condition. Please tender hearts today that they will find rest in knowing the love of our Savior who not only hears our cry for help, but also knows the pain we feel and the heart that cries out for love and attention. In our attempts to be just like Jesus, we must also show that caring attitude towards others, for often they are reaching out for help and comfort. Please forgive us Lord when our hearts are hardened and callous towards the needs of others. Because we are ‘tough’ and seasoned in life’s ups and downs, we often lose compassion for others who battle with the downside of these things and worry incessantly. Forgive us Lord when we drive others away, for we are often showing that that You don’t care. As a child of the King, may we always represent You well, and show the world how much You first loved us and that You continue to care about our eternal future. The truth is that ’but for the grace of God, we too could be hurting and in need of friends who truly love and care about us. It’s all about You Lord, and if we miss that while in the presence of our friends, we have just missed an opportunity to show them 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. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

God is able to Orchestrate Everything For Our Good!

As we approach the end of the year and begin thinking back to all that has taken place in our lives in 2020, unfortunately others may hear us moaning about the ups and downs of COVID or the hardships brought on because of that dreaded virus. However, there could be a much brighter view if we review the year based on our Scripture today. Join me for a time of reflection on the mercies of our awesome God!

Wednesday, 2020-12-27

Bible Reference: Romans 8:27-28
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 27 Don’t you know that He who pursues and explores the human heart intimately knows the Spirit’s mind because He pleads to God for His saints to align their lives with the will of God? 28 We are confident that God is able to orchestrate everything to work toward something good and beautiful when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan.

OBSERVATION: As we approach the end of the year and begin thinking back to all that has taken place in our lives in 2020, unfortunately others may hear us moaning about the ups and downs of COVID or the hardships brought on because of that dreaded virus. However, there could be a much brighter view if we review the year based on our Scripture today. Join me for a time of reflection on the mercies of our awesome God!

APPLICATION: For some, who may have won the lotto, or been immensely blessed in many ways, it may be easy to reflect on how good God is, and the many ways in which He has blessed. But there are some who may have experienced great life events, that may have involved losing a loved one; or medical challenges that may have almost caused separation from life to death for a precious family member; or losing a house or a car because of devastating financial burdens; or any number of things that you may have wished were more ‘normal’ or in line with others. However, if we look at the year in light of what today’s Scripture is teaching us, how might we answer this question of ‘blessings’ more appropriately, or how might we understand more clearly how God’s hand was right plumb in the middle of our circumstances? Friends, the Word of God says that our Savior is ‘pursuing and exploring our heart’ and petitioning the Father on our behalf that we may stay aligned with His will for our lives. Is it any wonder why we reflect on circumstances and wonder why we chose to take a certain road home in lieu of another, after hearing of the awful accident around the time of our travel home? Or that we chose to go to the hospital for expert medical help, instead of playing doctor and treating our chest pains with aspirin? Or that we chose to share our testimony with our best friend, at a time that God was already working out His salvation plan in her life? Friends, for each of these examples we may easily brush them off as just being something you would have done anyway, or we may call them coincidence or good luck, but please notice again from the Scripture that neither of these words are used – not even in this modern translation of the Bible. There is nothing haphazard about God’s plan, or about His actions in working out His plan in our lives. Remember, we are His workmanship, and for those who have accepted Him as Lord, we are His prized possession on loan only to this world for just a little while longer. So let’s look for, and expect to see His love and His caring touch work through us in miraculous ways. Verse 28 is a commonly recited verse, but I pray that it takes on a more enriched meaning for you as you are reminded of these verses today. I love the way that the Voice has translated the condition in verse 28: ‘when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan’. So friends, whether you reflect on 2020, or look towards 2021, try creating a sense of accountability with God on whether you could honestly say that you have loved Him sincerely, and you have accepted His plan for your life. Learn to praise Him unconditionally for everything that has transpired in your life, even if something devastated you at the time, because you know that He has worked it out with the Father for your good!

PRAYER: Lord You are so good to us! You amaze us with Your love and Your goodness, so much so that we may tend to question ‘why me Lord?’. Thank You for the lessons taught in these special verses today, for we are reminded of Your unconditional love for us, and how You love us enough that You keep us constantly before the Father, for our good. Help us Lord to keep this awesome reminder in mind, especially when things don’t appear to be going our way. May we be encouraged to share that special love with those that we come into contact with today. AMEN!

Show Mercy & Snatch Friends From Danger

I was reminded of a popular old hymn entitled ‘Rescue the Perishing’ as I read this Scripture today, and with everyone locked in and caring about themselves, and possibly their significant other, I wonder how soon we will return to the idea of caring about others, and trying to rescue them from the path on which they are headed. Without the Lord Jesus Christ, one is headed to a dark and burning Hell, but we are called on to rescue them by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Oh that we would have mercy on those we care about, like God had for us.

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-05-02
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Jude 1:20–23
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love. And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.

OBSERVATION: I was reminded of a popular old hymn entitled ‘Rescue the Perishing’ as I read this Scripture today, and with everyone locked in and caring about themselves, and possibly their significant other, I wonder how soon we will return to the idea of caring about others, and trying to rescue them from the path on which they are headed. Without the Lord Jesus Christ, one is headed to a dark and burning Hell, but we are called on to rescue them by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Oh that we would have mercy on those we care about, like God had for us.

APPLICATION: Interesting how God used Jude to not only share this with his church as he prepared to leave them, but also to have this included in His Word for our ongoing benefit. Friends, have you ever stopped and thought real good about the folk that God directs your way for your weekend services? They are looking to escape the cruelty and hatred of their world, and hoping to find the opposite at your church – God’s House. As they walk in, some might look them up and down because their dress code may not be quite like that of your regular church membership, or perhaps they may not have had water turned on at their place, and able to take a shower. I’m hoping that you too may have been touched by this Scripture from Jude. Let’s examine it closely: “Pray in the power of the Holy Spirit”, in other words don’t depend on feelings, or personal ideal you have established, but consider praying under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that is alive in you. I believe God, through His Holy Spirit, will direct your thoughts to be better aligned with His thoughts, so that you might see the heart of that visitor to your church, or that person trying to befriend you, without being impacted by any personal feelings. Fill yourself with God’s Holy Spirit and you will speak His words without having to worry about saying something that may otherwise upset someone. You will quickly see the spiritual need of the individual without being distracted by, or worrying about their immediate physical needs. Friends, Jude also goes on to encourage us to deal with believers from a Spirit filled heart. This is where we show mercy and love towards a Brother who is drifting away and not always living up to the mark. Satan is working seriously on the person and unless you intervene and gently speak to, and love on that person, they will be torn away by the forces of evil. In fact, it will be just like you are snatching that weaker Brother or Sister from the flames of Satan and his wicked and evil judgment. Please focus on the heart today friend. The words and the actions may appear ugly and extremely sinful, but as the heart of the individual is touched, the outside stuff will be cleaned up as they invite God in. At the end of the day, this also helps you to reconcile with God about where your heart is. Interested in the restoration of a soul for Christ, or satisfied to look on in pity as they drift off into eternity with Satan and his demons. People need the Lord, my friend, and unless you tell them about your loving, precious Savior who died and rose again for the forgiveness of your sin, they may never be introduced to your Friend. If they were drowning, or if they were in a burning house, you wouldn’t think twice about snatching them to safety. Please join me as we try to do the same for those who are in danger of dying with hope.

PRAYER: Lord, this is serious business for Your children, for our words and our actions can either serve to help restore one who has fallen, or one who is desperately looking for a better way, OR we could totally turn them off from ever wanting to know You at all. That’s quite a responsibility Lord Jesus, however we have been reminded that we must become better aligned with You, so that Your Holy Spirit may lead us to snatch them from danger of eternal death. My readers and I need You Lord Jesus, because we tend to be so critical of those that just don’t seem to have their act together quite as good as we think we do. Please forgive us for acting this way, for we have seen so often that mankind will fail in and of their own merits. Only things that are done for Jesus will last, and only things directed by Your Holy Spirit will lead to spiritual goodness that could be used for Your glory. Please have Your will and way in our lives this day, Oh Lord. For I ask these things in the all-powerful name of Jesus, my Lord, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

God Will Take Care of You!

No matter what may be the worry, or the concern, or the shortfall today, my God will take care of you! Concerns are many, but it is evident from our Scripture that God will take care of us, even when life seems impossible to us. Stop and meditate with me on this thought today dear friends. I believe that you will be blessed, and encouraged to praise the Lord who has it all under His careful control!

Friday, 2019-08-29

Bible Reference: 1 Kings 17:2-4
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text:  2 Then the Lord said to Elijah, 3 “Go to the east and hide by Kerith Brook, near where it enters the Jordan River. 4 Drink from the brook and eat what the ravens bring you, for I have commanded them to bring you food.”

OBSERVATION: No matter what may be the worry, or the concern, or the shortfall today, my God will take care of you! Concerns are many, but it is evident from our Scripture that God will take care of us, even when life seems impossible to us. Stop and meditate with me on this thought today dear friends. I believe that you will be blessed, and encouraged to praise the Lord who has it all under His careful control!

APPLICATION:  I Love that old gospel song: “Be not dismayed …. God Will Take Care of You“! On reading these verses this morning I was reminded that for all those times that we feel so worn, or so distraught about life’s circumstances – perhaps the loss of a loved one that leaves us wondering how on earth can we possibly go on without them; or perhaps because of financial woes that make us feel so trapped into thinking that we work to satisfy bills only; or perhaps unemployment that makes us look inward and question our own personal worth; no matter the circumstance, we tend to wonder ‘Why me, Lord’ and then question how can we possibly overcome our particular circumstance. Friends, I wish you would take time to read the whole passage linked in the scripture reference, because you will see the reason why God sent Elijah to the Jordan River bank to hang out in the first place, then you will also see what other miracles God performed to take care of Elijah, even beyond this feeding miracle at the Jordan River. Whether Elijah realized it or not, he was at a crossroads to where he may not have survived the drought if God had not intervened and taken care of him. I rejoiced in seeing how God worked through Elijah later on to bring a young man back to life, because it made me realize the importance of not giving up on God, and instead allowing Him to work on us, in us, and through us for the purpose of His greater accomplishments – for the kingdom, and at a time pleasing to God. Friends, our ways are not God’s ways, so we are called on to be faithful and sure in our faith, knowing that what He works out in and through us will serve to benefit Him and bless us tremendously. So may I encourage you dear friend to stand firm in your faith, depend on God, and open yourself to the wondrous things He will do through You. Please know that your personal circumstances may look totally different to what God has in store for you. Trust Him, wait on Him and allow Him to be God in your life. Know that when You place your faith, trust, and total life in His hands, He WILL Take Care of You!

PRAYER: To the loving, caring, awesome God that I serve; thank You Father for watching over me, taking care of me, and guiding my footsteps each and every day. Because I am still alive, I know that Your work is still in progress and I trust in You for whatever You would have me do. Please have Your will and way. Please continue to take care of me, and especially on those days when life seems impossible to me, or the future seems so questionable. Lord, there are many who will stop by to read this devotional today, please reinforce to them how much You care for them, and remind them of the enormous love that You have for them. Lord, I ask these thinks in faith, and in the precious name of Jesus, Your Son and my Savior, AMEN!

On Visiting The Sick and Shut-Ins – Listen!

For those considering a visit to a sick friend, a shut-in or hospitalized, I would challenge you today with the words of Job, please don’t fill the room with chatter but listen to the person. You are visiting to help them feel better, this might very well be best served by listening to them. This reminds me of our times with God, is that time spent mostly allowing yourself time to unload, or do you give yourself time to listen to God?

Monday, 2019-05-13

Bible Reference: Job 13:5-6
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: 
I wish you would just stop talking;
    then you would really be wise!
Listen to my argument,
    and hear the pleading of my lips.

OBSERVATION: For those considering a visit to a sick friend, a shut-in or hospitalized, I would challenge you today with the words of Job, please don’t fill the room with chatter but listen to the person. You are visiting to help them feel better, this might very well be best served by listening to them. This reminds me of our times with God, is that time spent mostly allowing yourself time to unload, or do you give yourself time to listen to God?

APPLICATION:  Ever have someone visit you and they don’t stop talking long enough for you to get a word in about how you are really feeling? Frustrating, isn’t it? I’ve been on both sides, so I believe I can identify with Job’s friends and with Job. As the visitor, we tend to feel like it is our responsibility to visit and make the person feel better. So we gather information about the person, then we either build up a wall of defense, just in case they decide to tear us apart, or we load up our minds with what we think they need mentally to help them feel better. As the sick or hurting person, Job in this case, we need someone that we can talk with and possibly identify with us. So if the visitor would just listen and nod their head occasionally to show they are listening or identifying with us, we would feel like we are not alone in our struggle. The last thing we need is a visitor, friend, pastor, elder or deacon, to visit and beat up on us about what we should have done, or how another church member never overcame the illness that they had similar to ours. We don’t want false hope, because although sick, we can quickly see through lies or false pretenses. Fortunately Job listened to all his friends had to say, but now he is lashing back at them. A visit to the unknown, and this would include a visit to a friend or fellow church member, is like walking into the unknown. Pray and ask God for wisdom, a listening ear and a kind word to encourage the person with. Remember, the sick person has been shut up in a room all day and needs someone to just listen to all they’ve been thinking about. Ask God to take away your desire to make them feel better with unending talk. There may be stuff the sick person would lay on the visitor that they want you to pray for and possibly help them find ways to deal with, like family matters or unresolved differences or best of all, to know Jesus personally! If we don’t listen, we will leave without knowing the heart of the one we visited!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, in Your precious and wonderful name, I ask that You humble us to listen more and speak less. You are the designer and maker of each person, so You know how prone we are to build ourselves up and show off our knowledge and our experiences, yet You placed us here on earth to worship and praise You, and to be a blessing to others. Please help us to get off our ‘soap boxes’ and to show humility in all things, like You did, especially in our dealings with others. Yes, we may have something important to add to a conversation, but I know that we need to be more like You and place You at the very top, or leader of all things, then place others before ourselves. No matter how uneducated the other person is, they are a valued child of our King, please help us to always bear that in mind and learn from them and their experiences. As You lead us with the right words to say, may we be obedient and loving in sharing, so that You may ultimately receive honor and praise from all involved. We can only accomplish this with Your guidance and Your help dear Lord, so I ask this in Your powerful, yet loving name, Jesus my Lord. AMEN!

God’s Plan Orchestrated For Our Good!

As we approach the end of the year and begin thinking back to all that has taken place in our lives in 2018, others may hear us moaning ‘poor me’ because of all that has happened. But let’s reflect on the year based on the focal verses above, and see if we could do any better in our time of reflection!

Wednesday, 2018-12-26

Bible Reference: Romans 8:27-28
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 27 Don’t you know that He who pursues and explores the human heart intimately knows the Spirit’s mind because He pleads to God for His saints to align their lives with the will of God? 28 We are confident that God is able to orchestrate everything to work toward something good and beautiful when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan.

OBSERVATION: As we approach the end of the year and begin thinking back to all that has taken place in our lives in 2018, others may hear us moaning ‘poor me’ because of all that has happened. But let’s reflect on the year based on the focal verses above, and see if we could do any better in our time of reflection!

APPLICATION: For some, who may have won the lotto, or been immensely blessed in many ways, it may be easy to reflect on how good God is, and the many ways in which He has blessed. But there are some who may have experienced great life events, that may have involved losing a loved one; or medical challenges that may have almost caused separation from life to death for a precious family member; or losing a house or a car because of devastating financial burdens; or any number of things that you may have wished were more ‘normal’ or in line with others who were ‘truly blessed’. However, if we look at the year in light of what today’s Scripture is teaching us, how might we answer this question of ‘blessings’ more appropriately, or how might we understand more clearly how God’s hand was right plumb in the middle of our circumstances? Friends, the Word of God says that our Savior is ‘pursuing and exploring our heart’ and petitioning the Father on our behalf that we may stay aligned with His will for our lives. Is it any wonder why we reflect on circumstances and wonder why we chose to take a certain road home in lieu of another, after hearing of the awful accident around the time of our travel home? Or that we chose to go to the hospital for expert medical help, instead of playing doctor and treating our chest pains with aspirin? Or that we chose to share our testimony with our best friend, at a time that God was already working out His salvation plan in her life? Friends, for each of these examples we may easily brush them off as just being something you would have done anyway, or we may call them coincidence or good luck, but please notice again from the Scripture that neither of these words are used – not even in this modern translation of the Bible. There is nothing haphazard about God’s plan, or about His actions in working out His plan in our lives. Remember, we are His workmanship, and for those who have accepted Him as Lord, we are His prized possession on loan only, to this world for just a little while longer. So let’s look for, and expect to see His love and His caring touch work through us in miraculous ways. Verse 28 is a commonly recited verse, but I pray that it takes on a more enriched meaning to you as you were reminded of verse 27. I love the way that the Voice has translated the condition in verse 28: ‘when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan’. So friends, whether you reflect on 2018, or look towards 2019, try creating a sense of accountability with God on whether you could honestly say that you have loved Him sincerely, and you have accepted His plan for your life. Learn to praise Him unconditionally for everything that has transpired in your life, because you know that He has worked it out with the Father for your good!

PRAYER: Lord You are so good to us! You amaze us with Your love and Your goodness, so much so that we may tend to question ‘why me Lord?’. Thank You for the lessons taught in these special verses today, for we are reminded of Your unconditional love for us, and how You love us enough that You keep us constantly before the Father, for our good. Help us Lord to keep this awesome news in mind, especially when things don’t appear to be going our way. May we be encouraged to share that special love with those that we come into contact with today. AMEN!

Here’s Why Jesus Was Born

Jesus taught us great lessons throughout His ministry. In this Scripture today, when Jesus was being tried by the authorities, He still showed His compassion; His calmness; and He declared His whole purpose for coming to this world. I wonder what we would say is our whole purpose on earth?

Thursday, 2018-12-06

Bible Reference: John 18:37
Translation: Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: ^37 Pilate said, “So you are a king.” Jesus answered, “You are right to say that I am a king. I was born for this: to tell people about the truth. That is why I came into the world. And everyone who belongs to the truth listens to me.

OBSERVATION: Jesus taught us great lessons throughout His ministry. In this Scripture today, when Jesus was being tried by the authorities, He still showed His compassion; His calmness; and He declared His whole purpose for coming to this world. I wonder what we would say is our whole purpose on earth?

APPLICATION: At different stages of our lives we may have sat and declared what our purpose in life is. For example, the transition from high school or college into the working world, you may have committed to be a doctor or an accountant, etc. When you got married, you made have declared what kind of spouse you would be. When you got saved, you may have promised God a drastic change in your lifestyle or in your habits. But was there ever a time that you declared what your whole purpose in life is…..? You see, Jesus was known as ‘Truth’, and for that reason we can measure absolute ‘Truth’. I sincerely believe that the Truth that Jesus spoke of here is the absolute Truth that He represents in being God’s precious Son. In other words, looking at Jesus and hearing His words, were just like seeing and hearing His Father – God. With that in mind, what is the real truth that others experience in you? Do they experience with you, what they really hear from you? Do you have to tell them that you are a Christian, or do they see that in you, and hear that from the words that you speak? As ‘little Christs’, our aim here on earth should be much like that of Jesus – to represent Him completely; honestly and wholly, so that the world may know and believe in the One who saved us from our sin and condemnation. To the unbeliever reading this blog today, let me assure you that God loves you also, and He wants you to come to Him believing in His precious Son. Seek His forgiveness my friend and give Him control of your life. He would love for you to experience His love; His forgiveness; and His caring – just like a real loving father would do for that very favorite son or daughter.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I pray that Your love will shine so strongly through my life that it will be evident to the world that You are having an awesome impact in my life, then may You be glorified by all that I come into contact with. Thank God for the grace and power expressed through His gracious Son. Thank You Jesus for accepting me as Your gracious son. May I represent you as well, so that others may see and believe. AMEN

Concerned Enough To Pray

Thursday, 2018-11-10

Scripture

Bible Reference: Nehemiah 1:2–4

Bible Text: Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that had survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem. They said to me, “Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.” When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven

Bible Translation: New International Version (NIV)

My Take

Ever shared your burden with a friend, and they promised to pray for you, but never followed up with you to see how you’re doing? Ever stood in a line of folk entering or exiting a church, and while telling one parishioner that you will be praying for them, you are already looking at the next person and greeting them? I am not your judge on whether you follow through with those promised prayers for someone, but I can honestly share with you that I have said those words many times before and now stand ashamed before God acknowledging that I have often not followed through with praying for the needs that I promised someone I would pray for. Nehemiah’s actions in verse (4) really spoke to me, but what equally ministered to me, was the action that he took in verse 2, where he asked about the condition of his Jewish brothers who had survived the exile. How many times do you leave church upset that the pastor never even asked you how you were feeling? Now, may I ask you a more challenging question, how many times in the last 4 weeks have you asked how things are going at the church at a very high level, or how might you pray for your pastor? Friends, too often we want to know what’s going on because we want every little piece of gossip we could get. I believe that Nehemiah is teaching us to settle for an answer like “I am really struggling today, please pray for my health”, or “I am feeling discouraged today, please pray for me”, or a pastor may say “I am feeling overwhelmed today because I am concerned about so many parishioners who are hurting emotionally or perhaps sick”. I believe that if we could settle for prayer needs such as that, instead of needing to know every little detail, then more pastors and/or Brothers and Sisters would share their high level prayer requests with us. But remember, most won’t share their prayer requests with us if we don’t care enough to ask. Now let me draw our attention to the depth of Nehemiah prayer. For he not only cared enough to ask about the condition of his people, but he followed through with days of mourning, fasting and praying before God for the needs of his people. Some months ago I took part in a prayer chain, where I committed to enter into God’s presence for one hour, praying over some heartfelt concerns. Because I have been accustomed to short, quick conversations with God, that hour felt like an eternity. Look at the condition of Nehemiah’s heart over this concern for his people – he mourned, he fasted and he prayed for days. May I challenge you to dig deep into your heart, yes even those of you that are trying to have hearts like your Master, the Lord Jesus Christ, and consider the last time that you were burdened enough about your church, or pastor, or unsaved loved one that you found it more important to pray than to eat, and your heart was so burdened for the need that you wept uncontrollably before God in prayer for hours and days before you felt a breakthrough? Let’s care enough to actually pray about those things that concern us, and/or concern those that we love and care about. The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man/woman avails much. Communion with God will best prepare us for dealings with mankind!

Prayer

Lord Jesus, please touch Your people once again. Draw us unto Yourself so that with Your heart and Your love and Your concern for Your children, we too might become more devoted to caring for one another and praying sincerely for the needs of others. Regrettably, we have become such an instant, fast-paced people that we hardly leave time for showing deep concern for one another, for our pastors and for our churches. Please forgive us Lord, and teach us to pray in a way pleasing to You, and that consequently reaches the hearts of those that we pray for. Our prayers are to You and for Your glory, so help us to never lose sight of our Savior by slacking in our prayer life. The world needs You, heavenly Father, and Christians need more of You to be effective witnesses for You. Please renew a right spirit within us, beginning with me, so that the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart will be acceptable in Your sight, oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. AMEN!

Footnote

If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Jesus Can Calm The Storms of Your Life

In our verses, the disciples were frightened by the storms all around them, for the waves were much bigger, and more powerful than their boat. Furthermore they had responsibility of keeping the Savior of the world safe, and they weren’t sure how much longer they could do that. However, after they woke Jesus up from His nap, He calmly stood and beckoned to the waters, that His Father had created, to quiet down and be still. Read the Application to see how this might apply to other storms we have in life.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Mark 4:38-40 (ERV)

TEXT: 38  ….. “Teacher, don’t you care about us? …..” 39 Jesus stood up and gave a command to the wind and the water. He said, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind stopped, and the lake became calm. 40 He said to his followers, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

OBSERVATION:   In our verses, the disciples were frightened by the storms all around them, for the waves were much bigger, and more powerful than their boat. Furthermore they had responsibility of keeping the Savior of the world safe, and they weren’t sure how much longer they could do that. However, after they woke Jesus up from His nap, He calmly stood and beckoned to the waters, that His Father had created, to quiet down and be still. Read the Application to see how this might apply to other storms we have in life.

APPLICATION:   There are times that we feel like we are in a storm that’s way beyond our understanding or ability to overcome, and we call out to Jesus, knowing that He is the only one who could help us through our storm, or He may even calm our storm for us. In our Scripture, the storm was at sea, and these storms still occur – so some may still call on Jesus to protect them from the angry waves and the boisterous winds. However, for some of us, our overwhelming storms of life might involve work; financial; family; friends; medical issues; or even loved ones who need more care than you can offer them. These are times that we feel like the overwhelming waters are about to flood over our heads, and we need help. But from whom? For relatives and friends are just as bad, or even worse than us. Friends, let me remind you that just as Jesus used His supernatural power to reach out and calm the powerful waters, He can also reach out and calm you down on the issues you feel so overwhelmed with. He may not see the need to make you a millionaire, but He can place the funds at your disposal to meet your needs. He may not do exactly what you ask, in the same fashion as the way you want it to happen, but He knows what’s even better for us. May I encourage you to know my Jesus personally, so that He will recognize the sound of His ‘sheep’ when we have the need to call on Him? May I suggest that you start depending on Jesus for small and large ‘waves’ or struggles in life. Call upon Him while He is near my friend. He’s still God, He will love you without limits, and He still hears our cry for help even today. 

PRAYER:   Dear God, we are lost without you, just as the disciples were , when they began to feel overwhelmed by the waves hitting their boat that night on the Sea of Galilee. So many times in life today we feel like the waves of doubt; overwhelming financial issues; or just the stress of so many health challenges are about to consume us… but then we remember the God who created these things that worry us, and we remember that He loved us so much that He sent His very own Son to rescue us from a world of sin. Then we come to our senses and recognize that we are loved beyond anything we could ever expect or deserve. Lord, may we be quick to surrender our cares and concerns to You and allow You to calm our ‘stormy seas’ – our worrying minds and our overwhelmed spirits, so that You – the only One who can, will resume charge and calm us to do Your work under the power and authority of the Holy Spirit. Lord, have Your will and way in our lives 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 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!

 

Concerned Enough To Actually Pray

Thursday, 2016-11-10

Scripture

Bible Reference: Nehemiah 1:2–4

Bible Text: Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that had survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem. They said to me, “Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.” When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven

Bible Translation: New International Version (NIV)

My Take

Ever shared your burden with a friend, and they promised to pray for you, but never followed up with you to see how you’re doing? Ever stood in a line of folk entering or exiting a church, and while telling one parishioner that you will be praying for them, you are already looking at the next person and greeting them? I am not your judge on whether you follow through with those promised prayers for someone, but I can honestly share with you that I have said those words many times before and now stand ashamed before God acknowledging that I have often not followed through with praying for the needs that I promised someone I would pray for. Nehemiah’s actions in verse (4) really spoke to me, but what equally ministered to me, was the action he took in verse (2) by asking about the condition of his Jewish brothers who had survived the exile. How many times do you leave church upset that the pastor never even asked you how you were feeling? Now, may I ask you a more challenging question, how many times in the last 4 weeks have you asked how things are going at the church at a very high level, or how might you pray for your pastor? Friends, too often we want to know what’s going on because we want every little piece of gossip we could get. I believe that Nehemiah is teaching us to settle for an answer like “I am really struggling today, please pray for my health”, or “I am feeling discouraged today, please pray for me”, or a pastor may say “I am feeling overwhelmed today because I am concerned about so many parishioners who are hurting emotionally and/or sick”. I believe that if we could settle for prayer needs such as that, instead of needing to know every little detail, then more pastors and/or Brothers and Sisters would share their high level prayer requests with us. But remember, most won’t share their prayer requests with us if we don’t care enough to ask. Now let me draw our attention to the depth of Nehemiah prayer. For he not only cared enough to ask about the conditions of his people, but he followed through with days of mourning, fasting and praying before God for the needs of his people. I recently took part in a prayer chain, where I committed to enter into God’s presence for one hour, praying over this certain heart-felt concern. Because I have been accustomed to short, quick conversations with God, that hour felt like an eternity. Look at the condition of Nehemiah’s heart over this concern for his people – he mourned, he fasted and he prayed for days. May I challenge you to dig deep into your heart, yes even those of you that are trying to have hearts like your Master, the Lord Jesus Christ, and consider the last time that you were burdened enough about your church, or pastor, or unsaved loved one that you found it more important to pray than to eat, and your heart was so burdened for the need that you wept uncontrollably before God in prayer for hours and days before you felt a breakthrough? Let’s care enough to actually pray about those things that concern us, and/or concern those that we love and care about. The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man/woman avails much. Communion with God will best prepare us for dealings with mankind!

Prayer

Lord Jesus, please touch Your people once again. Draw us unto Yourself so that with Your heart and Your love and Your concern for Your children, we too might become more devoted to caring for one another and praying sincerely for the needs of others. Regrettably, we have become such an instant, fast-paced people that we hardly leave time for showing deep concern for one another, for our pastors and for our churches. Please forgive us Lord, and teach us to pray in a way pleasing to You, and that reaches the hearts of those that we pray for. Our prayers are to You and for Your glory, so help us to never lose sight of our Savior by slacking in our prayer life. The world needs You, heavenly Father, and Christians need more of You to be effective witnesses for You. Please renew a right spirit with us, beginning with me, so that the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart will be acceptable in Your sight, oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. AMEN!

Footnote

If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!