Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Archive for the ‘Decisions’ Category

Grounded Decisions

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-01-20
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 7:24-27 (TLB)

Text:

24 “All who listen to my instructions and follow them are wise, like a man who builds his house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents, and the floods rise and the storm winds beat against his house, it won’t collapse, for it is built on rock.

26 “But those who hear my instructions and ignore them are foolish, like a man who builds his house on sand. 27 For when the rains and floods come, and storm winds beat against his house, it will fall with a mighty crash.”

OBSERVATION:
I believe that Jesus saw men flagging in bad decisions in His day also, so He taught them about what causes those unwarranted decisions, and what they could do about turning that weakness around. This is a lesson for people of all ages to follow, so let’s look at how we might apply this to our lives.
APPLICATION:
Jesus is very deliberate in what He instructed, and He used an example to clarify what He taught about making sound, or grounded decisions, and gave examples of what the results might look like. In the example of building a house on solid ground, this rings real close to home with me, because I come from a country where houses are generally built super strong and deeply grounded, because of the hurricanes that often pass over those islands, The Bahamas. However, Jesus was extremely clear in what he taught, so let’s not get too caught up in the examples that Jesus used, but rather concentrate on the simple truth of His Word. Based on this, I feel like I can safely teach you that your premise for making grounded, or safe decisions that are backed by God, are based on the condition used by Jesus when He said that we are to:

  • Listen to His instructions – this means that: (1) We are to carefully read the Word of God and try to understand what God is saying; (2) We are to speak to Him (pray) for clarity, when in doubt; and
  • Follow His Instructions – this means that as we understand His instructions, we are to obediently follow, or obey those instructions!

Now I believe that many times we will listen and obey God’s instructions and they may not apply to the circumstances at hand. Notice that Jesus didn’t say that we become wise by handling daily situations well. He said that we become wise as we listen and obey His instructions. Remember how important it is for us to teach a child about everyday situations? Even though they don’t need that education for situations they will handle that day, they become wise and able to handle those situations as they arise later in life. And so it is with God, friends! Let’s do what He says, knowing that one day we will act on what we learned. That’s how we make sound, grounded decisions, based on the teachings of our Lord!

PRAYER:
Every day we make decisions, some of which have long-lasting effects on the lives of people that we know, love, and want to see accept You as Lord. Unless we display the love and wisdom of the Lord Jesus Christ, often we will lose their confidence and even sometimes cause them to create a lack of faith in us. Lord, it’s not about us. We want these individuals to clearly see the faith that we have in our all-wise, all-loving God and therefore create a desire in them to know You and accept You as Lord. To do this, please teach us to not only go in Your name, but to stay mindful of, and obedient to, Your teachings, so that our ways, and our thoughts, and our words or instructions, might better align with Yours. This requires that we empty ourselves of self and fill ourselves with You and Your teachings. Please give us the desire to do just that and embolden us to freely share Your love with others. I ask these things in the strong name of Jesus, my Rock and my Redeemer, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the 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!

Slaves to Whomever We Obey

Wednesday, 2016-10-12

Scripture

Bible Reference: Romans 6:15–18

Bible Text:  15 What does all this mean? Does it mean we are free to sin, because we are ruled by God’s wonderful kindness and not by the Law? Certainly not! 16 Don’t you know that you are slaves of anyone you obey? You can be slaves of sin and die, or you can be obedient slaves of God and be acceptable to him. 17 You used to be slaves of sin. But I thank God that with all your heart you obeyed the teaching you received from me. 18 Now you are set free from sin and are slaves who please God.

Bible Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take

I believe it is safe to say that if asked the meaning of the word ‘Slave’, we would probably respond with one of the typical dictionary meanings “a person who is the property of, and wholly subject to another“, and I believe that we would immediately cringe at the connotations represented by that word. However, what do you call it when you go to work every day and do a serious of tasks that you’ve been ordered to do, that are quite contrary to your description of a happy and successful day for you personally? It sounds like you didn’t personally choose to do those tasks because they were the top 10 on your list of favorite things to do. Similarly in marriage, you are expected to change from the things most kids your age find to do together in the name of ‘fun’, to a life of dedication, support and love of another individual. In our verses today, Paul is helping us to understand that although we may have subjected ourselves to the things and leadership of our friends, to do the things that the world calls ‘fun’, our life-direction does not change and we are still destined for Hell. In fact, we become so caught up in the things of the world  (things recommended or promoted by our friends), that we find ourselves doing them without any personal desire or satisfaction. Does that sound just a little like your initial description of ‘slave’? Could it be that you may have become a ‘slave’ to the things of the world? Paul therefore saw where his audience, and many of our friends today, need to be apprised of the only alternative to this dilemma. Jesus came so that we might be free from the hold of this old world, or slavery of this old world. Jesus said that for all who accept Him as Lord and Savior of their lives, He would set them free from the slavery of this world and its ruler, Satan. In fact, Paul likens this to us being determined to become slaves of Jesus Christ, in that we surrender our will to His leadership, so that we might experience the joys of heaven and the promise of everlasting life with He and the Father. This is like comparing night to day; death to life; hell to heaven; everlasting death to everlasting life; children of Satan to a child of the King of all kings; the darkness of hell to the bright and shinning promises of Heaven. Is this really something that you need to stop and consider, or is the choice as straight forward as it appears to me? Think about it friend and make a good choice today. To whom will you commit your allegiance? Unless you decide to follow Jesus, you are a slave to this world and its leader, Satan. Is that really what you want?

Prayer

Lord Jesus, thank You for sacrificing Your life, so that I might live forever with You and the Father in Heaven. You have offered compelling reasons for us to leave the slavery of this old world and its leader of death and destruction, to follow the Savior of this World that leads us to life everlasting in heaven with You and the Father. Thank You Lord Jesus! May this renewed faith, and renewed hope, and brand new life, be so evident in the lives of Your children today that those who are still slaves to sin, will develop a new desire to know You today. May we be obedient to Your will and Your way, so that You may be glorified through us today. I ask these things in faith and because of Jesus, 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!

Find Out What The Lord Says

Tuesday, 2016-09-06

Scripture

Bible Reference: 1 Kings 22:4–5

Bible Text: 4 Then he turned to Jehoshaphat and asked, “Will you join me in battle to recover Ramoth-gilead?” Jehoshaphat replied to the king of Israel, “Why, of course! You and I are as one. My troops are your troops, and my horses are your horses.” 5 Then Jehoshaphat added, “But first let’s find out what the LORD says.

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

I believe that way too often we make decisions and then ask God to ‘buy in’ on our decisions and bless it. Friends, King Jehoshaphat has demonstrated in these verses today that this is not the order of things for the believer. Think about it, if you say that Jesus is Lord of your life, then you proceed into making your own decisions without first asking God and getting His permission, who really is lord of your life? When you make decisions and then ask God to bless your decisions, you are really saying to God that:

  • You are in control, but would appreciate His backing;
  • The decision sounds logical and that it would benefit you, even though you don’t have a clue what will transpire beyond the very moment in which you exist;
  • You know what you want for your future, and this decision seems to fit just right into that projected path. Notice that in all of the planning that king Ahad and king Jehoshaphat had spoken of, they did not include the piece where King Ahad would be killed in battle.

Friends, our insight and personal decisions are based on the facts at hand and the possibilities that exist, and the desires of our heart, based on our own abilities and the physical attributes available to us at that particular time. Let us always remember that God’s ways are not our ways and that His plans are based on eternity for His children, whereas our decisions are always selfish and based on very temporal and physical benefits for ourselves. One results in eternal ‘D&D’ (damnation and death), and the other results in eternity in heaven with Jesus and His Heavenly Father, God. Two completely opposing results – choose you this day whom you will serve, and who will guide your destiny, friend, and then be obedient to your Master.

Prayer

Lord, You have shown us over and over again that You hold the keys to our future and that You should therefore be consulted before making decisions, so that You can best direct us, in order that our path not be impeded. These verses today have served to remind us of this once again. Please patiently work in the lives of Your children once again today and help us to surrender ourselves to Your perfect will. Lord, it is so critical that we be obedient to Your will, and not stumble and fall because of selfish decisions made because we couldn’t possibly know what’s in store for us in the very next moment. You’re in control Lord, and I pray that You will help us to ensure that our lives are always in sync with Your perfect plan for us. May we learn to surrender everything to You, for our ultimate good, and Your eternal glory, 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!

Which Way?

Saturday, 2016-08-06

Scripture

Bible Reference: Revelation 21:6-8

Bible Text:  6 And He said to me, “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the one who thirsts I will give [water] from the fountain of the water of life without cost. 7 He who overcomes [the world by adhering faithfully to Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior] will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son. 8 But as for the cowards and unbelieving and abominable [who are devoid of character and personal integrity and practice or tolerate immorality], and murderers, and sorcerers [with intoxicating drugs], and idolaters and occultists [who practice and teach false religions], and all the liars [who knowingly deceive and twist truth], their part will be in the lake that blazes with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

Bible Translation: Amplified Bible (AMP)

My Take

I understand that one of the hardest things for a man to do, is to stop driving and ask for directions!!! For he tries to work out in his own mind and intuition ‘Which Way’ to go. Of course, choosing the right way will get you to the right place, in best time, and saving the most in fuel costs. And oh, less embarrassment from the wife!!! Now, I believe we all can conclude that choosing the wrong route will cause all of the opposite effects! I am convinced that occasionally we need to be reminded of what the impact that our decisions today have on our eternity. Our all knowing-God took this into effect when He showed John, the author of Revelation, what the impact would be. Thankfully God had John share this with us, so that we could be better informed of what the outcome will be based on our decisions today. In other words, because we are informed, we will go into eternity knowing whether we will be treated as sons and daughters of the Most High, or instead enter into eternal destruction and torment. Friends, the decisions we make today determines our eternal destination. May I remind you that we are naturally inclined to follow the evil desires of our heart. Further, we live in a world that promotes and encourages us to follow these evil ways. How then shall we get from what is natural, to the One who is supernatural? I love the way that this translation reads on verse 7, for it tells us that we are to adhere to the teachings of Jesus Christ. However, we will only do this if we surrender ourselves to that Teacher. For if our natural desire is to sin, we need supernatural power to help us overcome the natural, therefore we need to surrender ourselves to the supernatural One (Jesus), to be led by Him and directed in our path here on earth. Friends, I would encourage you to examine these verses very carefully, for we are given only One Way to change the design and destination of our life. There are no options for just good behavior; attending church; having a good attorney; having good Christian parents, or the such. ONE WAY friends. Please be sure you are on the right track. Please check out my Footnote for help on directions.

Prayer

Thank You dear God for providing THE WAY for us to prepare today for where we will spend eternity. It’s like an open book for us, so we know what it takes and what affects that decision. Please make us bold in making right decisions today Lord, for our desire is to enjoy the glories of Heaven with our Master throughout all eternity. We need You Lord Jesus. 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!

The WARNING Signs

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider feeding even us with His Word! May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for a blessing, friend!………

Today’s Bible Reference: Luke 21:25–28
Today’s Bible Text: 25 “And there will be strange signs in the sun, moon, and stars. And here on earth the nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides. 26 People will be terrified at what they see coming upon the earth, for the powers in the heavens will be shaken. 27 Then everyone will see the Son of Man coming on a cloud with power and great glory. 28 So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for your salvation is near!”
The Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take Away: I am not a meteorologist, but it seems like there are computers that are constantly analyzing the weather events of the past, so that based on certain wind flows and other conditions today, our favorite weather announcer could be prized with being the first to warn us about a predicted upcoming event, for our safety and security. Jesus shared with us in these verses today about various (obvious) WARNING signs that the Holy Spirit will cause us to stand to our feet and look up in full awe and anticipation to welcome our King, our Savior, our Messiah as He comes to take us with Him! Friends, when events such as this occur, there are often some folk who are waiting for the moment and are ready to go with their Master. However, there will unfortunately be those who have procrastinated, or refused, to surrender their life to our Savior. Please consider me your biblical ‘meteorologist’ today, as based on God’s Holy Word, it is written that the first group mentioned above will be taken with Jesus to reside with His Father, our Almighty Father, to live and reign with Him, to worship and adore Him throughout all eternity. This same good book also tells me to warn you that the second group will cry aloud for the Savior at this time, but because the decision was not made prior to His coming, He will have no choice but to disclaim them at that time and leave them behind with their earthly master, Satan. Friends, until the actual return of the Savior, you still have time to surrender your life to Him. However, because His return could be any minute now, you could very easily be totally out of time. May I encourage you to not tarry; please do not procrastinate, but instead make this a priority over anything else you have planned for today. Not sure how to handle this? Please read my ‘footnote’ for further instructions, or respond to me and I will personally give you guidance. This is way too important to procrastinate friend, please heed the WARNING!

Prayer: Father, I am grateful that Your Holy Spirit visited with me and prompted me of the warning signs regarding my eternal destiny. Thank You for convicting me of my sin, and convincing me of my need for a Savior. I hurt today because of the multitude of friends and family that are playing with their commitment because they are not convinced of the warning signs. Lord, Your Word has been so clear and proven so true in so many ways. Please tender the hearts of my readers and those that are near and dear to each one of us today. May this devotional lead to a time of decision making by many as they listen to Your still small voice regarding your return and the certainty of eternity. We can only depend on You oh Lord, our Master and King, 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!

2016

Who Is Jesus To You?

THE HOLY BIBLE (The Living Bible – John 7:40-43): 40 When the crowds heard him say this, some of them declared, “This man surely is the prophet who will come just before the Messiah.” 41-42 Others said, “He is the Messiah.” Still others, “But he can’t be! Will the Messiah come from Galilee? For the Scriptures clearly state that the Messiah will be born of the royal line of David, in Bethlehem, the village where David was born.” 43 So the crowd was divided about him. 

THOUGHTS: Individually we have our own ideas of who Jesus is. So much so that I would imagine if we polled an audience of 50 people, we would probably get 50 slightly different responses. In our pastor’s sermon last week we heard of someone whose life has been radically changed, and how this is so evident in writings or correspondence from this individual, because now it is very evident that words/expressions are coming from very deep in this individual’s heart, compared to his previous educated mind and intelligence. I believe this is representative of what we might hear from an audience as well, but the BIG question today is “who is Jesus to you“? Someone reading this devotional may have only heard about Jesus through curse words used by those with no regard for my Lord. Some may have heard their mom or grandmother talk about this Jesus that they seemed to have known. Some may have accepted Jesus as Lord in their earlier days and have found no room for Him in their adult life, because they have managed to survive on their own and really don’t need Jesus. However, some are passionate about their Lord, because they live and breathe the Word of God daily. They have an intimate relationship with Jesus that incorporates daily talks with Him (prayer), and daily hearing from God as they are faithful to read His Word on at least a daily basis. My Savior might be known as ‘Healer’; ‘Deliverer’; ‘Comforter’; ‘Encourager’; ‘Confidant’ or even as ‘Soon Coming King’ to saints who have a personal, living and vibrant relationship with Jesus Christ. Yes, the crowd is still divided, as the responses are still so varied. However, Jesus is still the same today as He was yesterday and the day before. My God’s Not Dead, for He is very much alive in me each and every day. Please allow me to ask again, who is Jesus to you? May I remind you that there will be a reckoning day soon for each of us, where the answer to this very question will be the determining factor on whether you are allowed into the glories of heaven, or whether your earthly decisions on heavenly questions were unimportant to you, and therefore your destination is predetermined by you to the place of eternal damnation – Hell. Friends, our decision today determines our eternal destination. Our God is not mean and out to get you, He is in fact a perfect gentleman and allows you to decide for yourself where you would rather spend eternity. Being smart enough to read this devotional, also qualifies you to make sensible decisions. Ones that you can live with today, and after you pass from this world into the next. Listen to your heart friend. Invite Jesus in and commit your life to the One who holds the future – your future. I’m waiting for the day when I see the smile of the face of my Lord, and I pray that each of you are ready for the same, God being your helper.

PRAYER: Lord God, this world has taken its toll on mankind and influenced mankind to become so independent, yet terribly influenced by sin and the devil. Your Word is clear, that this leads one to Hell itself and eternal damnation without further access to God. You have given us time up to this very moment to make wise decisions that could lead us to our eternal home in glory with You and Your son Jesus. Unfortunately many have not taken time to make wise decisions, and I am very sad, because many of these are my friends and family, and ones that I would never want to see any harm come to them. Lord, I pray that today will be the day of salvation for them. Please tender their hearts once again, convince them of their sin and remind them of Your love that is available to them. I love You Lord, and ask all these things in the name of Jesus Christ, and for His glory, 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 read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 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, Sebring, FL! 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!

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