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

Archive for the ‘Encourager’ Category

Encourage One Another

Saturday, 2016-10-01

Scripture

Bible Reference: Romans 1:11-12

Bible Text:   11-12 For I long to visit you so that I can impart to you the faith that will help your church grow strong in the Lord. Then, too, I need your help, for I want not only to share my faith with you but to be encouraged by yours: Each of us will be a blessing to the other.

Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

My Take

I believe that way too often we ignore the needs of the person who comes to our rescue and helps us through life’s hardest challenges. Like any good pastor today, Paul was anxious to go and deliver the Word to the Roman church, because he wanted to encourage them in their faith and their ongoing ministry. To ensure that we get the right picture, let me suggest that this may mean our local pastors being so fired up about the Word God has given them to share with us in weekend services, that they can hardly wait for the moment that they stand in our pulpit to preach the Word. Now back to the story – Paul told the people that in spite of the spiritual gift he had for them, he was expecting to also be blessed by their spiritual gift to him. Friends, for the man standing in our pulpit, preaching his heart out and speaking exactly what he feels led by God to share with us, have you ever thought about how you might minister back to him? I believe that after many corporate services, we are in so much of a rush to get to the local restaurant that we never stop to think about patting the pastor on the back to encourage him, or ask him how you might pray for him, or share with him how God is blessing you, and your hope that God would do the same for your pastor. There may be some who show little concern for their pastor, because you look at him as a paid employee who is simply doing what he is paid to do. Friends, I believe that a pastor’s job is very similar to that of a teacher, where it’s more of a heart-for-the-job attitude, than any amount of money they may be paid to do the job. I believe that pastors spend limitless hours ministering to the needs of the sheep, that most parishioners never have a clue about. I believe that most pastors are so underpaid, that they face financial challenges far worst than most of their parishioners. I believe that God is speaking to us through these verses today by simply encouraging us to not settle for what we might receive from His servants, but be constantly thinking about what we might give, or how we may encourage God’s servants – our pastors. This weekend, let’s remember what Paul was asking for, and be encouraged to respond to our pastors with encouragement before they have to ask us for it. I believe that God will especially bless us for encouraging His messengers/servants to continue on in the teaching and preaching of His Word!

Prayer

Thank You Lord Jesus for Your grace, and for Your mercy on even us. Thank You for blessing us with shepherds who have chosen to serve You by serving us and encouraging us. Lord, please touch each and every church attendee this weekend with a spirit of encouragement for our pastors. As they pour their hearts out to us, may we in turn be grateful and encourage them in return. Lord, we want to please You in every thing we do. I believe that by placing Paul’s desire for encouragement in Your Word, You wanted to remind us of the human needs of our pastors also. May we be alert to their needs, so that together we may receive every blessing that You have in store for us. May You be glorified in all that Your churches attempt to achieve this weekend, for I ask these things in the precious name 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!

Good Deeds That Trigger Praise To God

THE HOLY BIBLE (New Living Translation – Matthew 5:13-16): 13 “You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless. 14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. 15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.

THOUGHTS: Jesus always taught using object lessons that His hearers could identify with. Fortunately, we can still identify with many of the things Jesus chose to use in His lessons. Although salt is still important in most kitchens today, I believe that it has developed more of a negative spin from our health conscious contemporaries because of the abuse by many chefs. However, let’s look at why Jesus may have chosen such a key element to demonstrate His point. It was used by the people being taught to preserve food. Without refrigeration, meat was salted to preserve it and stop decay. Then, and now, salt was/is used to flavor food – make it more palatable for the consumer of the finished product to enjoy the meal because of its greatly enhanced taste. So let’s compare this to the Christian’s life: we are a chosen people, and just like salt is not intended to stay on the ground and go unnoticed, but be used to preserve food, we too are designed to preserve the lives of those who would otherwise die and go to hell without a Savior. Our lives are to bring such ‘flavor’ (a sweet aroma, a desired transformation, a comfort, a satisfaction and a calm assurance) to an unbeliever’s life that they would gain a desire for the same attributes, and a desire for the Savior that we would constantly and consistently attribute the origination of our gift(s) to. Friends, I believe that we should have such an impact on those that we come into contact with, that their lives might be enhanced, just life salt enhances food to be more palatable. The other attribute taught by Jesus is ‘light’. Friends, please try this simple little illustration. Make a room totally dark tonight and then try moving around in the room. Then turn on just a very small flashlight, and notice the difference it makes in the large dark room. It makes a huge difference. We too live in a very dark world – darkened by sin. Jesus wants us to be relief to those who struggle in darkness – perhaps no hope, perhaps no light at the end of their dark and dreary tunnel. In the Bible Jesus is known as ‘light’. When the unsaved discovers a ray of hope in us, it reminds them of Jesus, the Light of the world, and it draws them closer to Him. To a mariner, a small light at the top of a lighthouse gives direction and hope. An unbeliever struggling in a dark world will receive a ray of hope and new direction from a Christian who lets the light of Jesus shine out from them in their actions and words. So friends, may I encourage you to allow your life to impact the lives of others like salt impacts the taste of food, and to allow the light of Jesus to shine bright enough through you that the unsaved receives hope when you walk into a room with them? May Jesus be praised today because of the difference you will make in someone’s life!

PRAYER: Dear God, as Your humble servants, may we seek Your face and allow You to impact our lives in such a way that we, in turn, may impact the lives of those that we come into contact with. May we be ‘salt’ to their dull and meaningless lives, and may we be as a ‘light’ in their dark world where there seems to be no hope. We are capable of nothing like this without Your supernatural power in and through us, so Lord I pray that You might be given full reign over us today. Touch the lives of those that You know need refreshment, restoration or a new outlook on life – life eternal. Please use us in Your own special way today is my humble and sincere prayer that I ask in the name 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 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!

The Value of Encouraging One Another

THE HOLY BIBLE: Be careful, brothers and sisters, that none of you ever develop a wicked, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. Encourage each other every day while you have the opportunity. If you do this, none of you will be deceived by sin and become stubborn. (‭Hebrews‬ ‭3‬:‭12-13‬ GW)‬‬

THOUGHTS: As God spoke to me about this passage of scripture this morning, I can only conclude that Satan is very busy among God’s body of believers. In other words, I believe we have convincing information here to show that God would much rather see His people get along; encourage one another; love and respect each other, so that it would be evident to the world to whom we belong. In fact, the writer goes as far as saying that when we (Christians) use every possible opportunity to encourage one another in the faith and in the spiritual condition of each other’s lives, we help prevent sin from hardening into our lives. I believe this means that the encouragement from a Christian Brother or Sister will help us fight off sin, and especially fight towards preventing sin from becoming a permanent part of our lives. Friends, I believe that we have to always be aware that although we might belong to God, Satan is always on our trail, trying every trick in his book to win us back; placing obstacles in our way to hinder our walk with the Lord. However, with God’s help, we are expected to help each other fight against the evil one, by prompting each other towards good works; by promoting the studying of God’s Word so that we might be filled with His righteousness and not the evil promoted by the world and Satan; by encouraging each other in the things of the Lord and not allowing Satan and his cohorts to keep pushing negativism, evil and malice in the face of God’s children. I believe our challenge for the day is to stop and question ourselves whether we are helping our friends to prevent, fight off, or stay away from sin, or are we pushing them towards it. If we are a part of someone’s life, we will have one of these effects on them. Please ask God to make you an encourager that will provoke your friends to love and good works – towards the things of God, and not just a ‘bump on the log’ that causes them to stumble and fall.

PRAYER: Father, I am thankful for the positive influences of folk that You have placed in my life. I am especially grateful for those that encourage me and provoke me towards the things of God. I need Your help today to identify those who need my encouragement, and Your guidance in how I might encourage them. Please help me to repoint them to You and Your Word, for it is the means to life everlasting in glory with You and the Father. As I strive towards staying close to You every day, may I always be made aware that my life is to be a living example of You and an encouragement to others, so that together we may stay strong in the faith and of value to each other while still here on this earth. Thank You for loving me enough to send an encouraging Brother along side of me to show me the cross and lead me towards salvation. May I be that kind of encourager today! Bless those that will meditate on this devotional today, that they also may be encouraged, then prompted to encourage others towards the cross of Jesus Christ, for it is in His name that I ask all this, 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 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 http://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!

Be Encouragers of God’s Messengers

The Holy Bible (The Contemporary English Version – 1 Thessalonians 2:2-6): God gave us the courage to tell you the good news about him, even though many people caused us trouble. 3 We didn’t have any hidden motives when we won you over, and we didn’t try to fool or trick anyone. 4 God was pleased to trust us with his message. We didn’t speak to please people, but to please God who knows our motives. 5 You also know that we didn’t try to flatter anyone. God himself knows that what we did wasn’t a cover-up for greed. 6 We were not trying to get you or anyone else to praise us.

Thoughts: I believe that when one does a job in spite of opposition, or in spite of whining and complaining by those they are trying to help, then we should appreciate that they are specially called for that job, and they are therefore working as a result of their obligation to a higher calling. This is what we see in this message by Paul, and if we are real honest, this is what we see in our pastors and teachers at our local churches. Although they may never openly complain, I believe that our pastors face a lot of correction, ideas, suggestions and self-proclaimed righteousness from their congregations to whom they preach and teach. Please don’t get me wrong friends, I believe pastors welcome your constructive input, because it helps to show them that you were listening and indeed care enough to correct them or encourage them with your words. But let’s try to be careful to be encouragers, and not on the list of ‘trouble makers’ or ‘opposers’ to the gospel. When our pastors have the freedom to share the unfiltered Word of God with us, then perhaps we can hear directly from God. If they have to speak in parables to make sure they don’t hurt the feelings of some, then many of us will totally miss the point! Paul shared that he had no other motive than to see Jesus accepted and God magnified and lifted up by the folk he was ministering to. I believe that we still have men of God who endeavors to do this through their preaching, teaching and actions in their life. I hope that even today we can commit to aiding these gentlemen – these men of God, to be transparent in what God wants to say to us through them, and not be hindered by us in any way. I was taught many years ago that each of us might mess up at times, but let’s learn to look at the heart and see what the other brother’s heart might be. Many times we will be convinced that although he may have said something differently to what we would have said, his intent was to help and/or to magnify God. So where do you best fit in this scenario today: Encourager; Opposer or just don’t listen close enough to care? I believe God wants us to all be encouragers, and we can do this through an encouraging word to our pastors and/or teachers, or we can pray for God’s ongoing hand upon them as they surrender to Him and try to share His Word with us. Let’s commit to improving our stance, so that our pastors might be improved in their walk and their talk!

Prayer: Lord, You have indeed blessed us with great messengers who sacrifice daily so that they might share Your heart and Your will with us. I sincerely thank You for my pastors and teachers and I pray that they might be even more energized by Your touch on their lives today. May they be drawn so close to Your bosom today that they might be reassured of Your love and Your direction for them as they lead us. May they receive a fresh anointing of Your divine Holy Spirit so that as they stand before us this weekend we may hear the unfiltered Word of God and not have to guess what You are trying to say to us through them. May our pastors have the freedom to be transparent in what You might need to say to us through them, is my humble and sincere prayer that I ask in Your precious name, with thanksgiving. 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 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 blogger.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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