Follow My Example

We’ve heard the words of Jesus when calling His disciples ‘Come, Follow Me’. In our Scripture today, Paul also told those to whom he preached ‘Follow me – just as I follow Christ’. Are you at a point in your Christian life yet where you might encourage someone to follow in your example, as you are sold out and following Jesus Christ? Meditate with me today as we consider these words of Paul, and how God may have us apply these words to our life.

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2022-06-01
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 1 Corinthians 10:31-32; 11:1
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: 31 So if you eat, or if you drink, or if you do anything, do it for the glory of God. 32 Never do anything that might make other people do wrong…..
11 Follow my example, just as I follow the example of Christ.

APPLICATION: The more prevalent phrases we hear today is ‘Don’t follow me, for I’m also lost’ or ‘Follow Christ, for He is the only perfect One’ or ‘I’m a sinner saved by grace, just like you. So don’t follow me, but God’ But what if we brought up our kids like that? Wouldn’t they soon learn that they could do whatever they want, as long as they say the right thing? This would also be the case with pastors and church leaders, if they stood in our pulpits each weekend and told us what the Word of God says, but include the disclosure that we obey the sermon, not follow after what they do when not occupying the pulpit. Friends, Jesus said that He would only say what His Father told Him to say, and He would only do what God told Him to do. In becoming a ‘Christian’, believers are expected to follow Jesus’ example and look to God for all things, including what we say and do. But how do we do that, shall we stop and ask before we speak or before every action? That would be a great idea, but God has also made a few provisions for us, in order to help us follow in His example: For the child of God, we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us as our Guide, our Wisdom, our Protector and as a constant reminder that the Love is our God; through prayer – where God hears the cries of our heart, if only we will stop and talk to Him about our challenges and our need for help; and God inspired writers to pen His words so that we might know His will for our lives, and He gave us the invitation to read His Word so that the Holy Spirit might point us to all truth, wisdom and direction for our existence and for every thing that we do or say. If we are unfaithful in these things, I can assure you that the world is seeing more itself acted out through us. For this to be a better world, and to enable others to see Christ here on earth, it is incumbent upon us to be the hands a feet of Jesus. I feel strongly that before we hold up our Christian flag to tell others to whom we belong, then we need to insure that we hold no other hold on this world. We must be sold out to Jesus in order to show the world who He is and what He is capable of achieving through His earthly servants. This may be a work in progress until Jesus returns, but please be careful to not let Jesus down by showing the world only a partial and incomplete picture of who He truly is and what He stands for. Perhaps we should consider telling our unsaved friends, come follow me as I endeavor to follow Jesus every day, God being my helper. I encourage you to look closely at the proof of whose I am, and in seeing the evidence, trust in Him, just as I have done. Ask God to help you never mislead anyone, but that you are depending heavily on Him to show the world Jesus.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: I believe that if we stake our hope in Jesus Christ as Lord of our lives, and we depend on Him to guide us in the path that points to Him, through obedience we will be instrumental in pointing others towards the cross, and we could therefore comfortably invite others to follow us, as we follow Christ!

PRAYER: I wonder what our purpose on earth is, dear Lord, unless we are firm in our faith and can comfortably show others the way to eternal life. Please keep us focused on the cross, and on all that You have done for us so that our sins would be forgiven and our destination secured. Please teach us to share our faith, and may our actions and words speak so strongly that our words will be few. It is only what done for Jesus that will last and will matter. May our lives be worth the living because others saw the light of Jesus in us. 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!

Guilty Of Following Christ’s Example

Like me, I bet you also heard your parents use the phrase ‘Practice What You Preach’ at every applicable opportunity! In today’s scripture Paul is also using this principle in his teaching to the Jews, and because it is God’s inspired Word, I believe it serves as a reminder to us as well. Paul noted that the behavior of God’s chosen people, the Jews, had a very negative impact on the Gentiles to whom he was trying to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I’m afraid that this may still be a real problem even today, so perhaps we should stop and meditate on what God had to say through His servant, Paul.

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2022-03-21
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 2:21-24
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 21 … you teach others—then why don’t you teach yourselves? You tell others not to steal—do you steal? 22 You say it is wrong to commit adultery—do you do it? You say “Don’t pray to idols” and then make money your god instead. 23 You are so proud of knowing God’s laws, but you dishonor him by breaking them. 24 No wonder the Scriptures say that the world speaks evil of God because of you.

APPLICATION: I cringe when I hear folks say things like “your actions speak so loudly that I can’t hear what you are saying”. Because, unfortunately these folk are often right in saying these things. It hurts me deeply when I hear of church leaders caught in certain acts of sin, because they often have such a large following who is looking to them as a role model. No matter how often we tell folk that they should model their lives after Christ, not man, yet we see more fall out from church members when a pastor leaves, or a church leader is caught in an act of sin. The bottom line is that we all should be guilty of following Christ’s example so closely that people around us would see no difference between our actions and those they expect from Christ. When we surrender Lordship of our lives to Jesus, we ask Him to guide our footsteps every day so that we may walk like Him; guide our tongues each day so that we may talk like Him, and care so much for us each day that we may, in turn, love others like He would. Without Jesus Christ, it is virtually impossible to follow His ways each day in this world we live in, however, rest assured that in Christ, ALL things are possible. If friends of yours never read the first thing about the Bible, but they trust you enough to follow in your footsteps and obey your verbal instructions to them, who would they look like, Jesus Christ or the world? Remember, we are to be little ‘Christ’s’, so our friends following us could ultimately look the same! How are you doing? Do you have portions of your life still left to surrender to God, or are you comfortable that your life is in line with Jesus Christ? Please don’t let Jesus say to you on Judgment Day what Paul said to his fellow Jews, that people are cursing Christ because of you. As a parent we gloat at the times when others praise our children, because we feel a sense of pride in the job that we did in parenting. Let’s live our Christian lives following the same formula, so that Jesus may one day say “Well done good and faithful servant, when these children of Mine followed you, it was the same as them following Me, receive now the crowns I have prepared for you”! Let’s live with the end in mind friend!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I respectfully ask that I not be a stumbling block to anyone here on this earth. I pray that others may see enough of You in me that they will not be disappointed over their expectations of You. Lord, may I always represent You in ways that might lead others towards You. Please gently speak to my friends that may meditate on this devotional today, and lead them into a time of soul-searching and revival in their personal lives. Lord, it’s You that we live for. May that be evident in our words and actions today, is my humble prayer that I ask in Your very precious and holy name, 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!

Shall They Follow The God Evident In Your Life?

The king declared a decree based on what he saw had happened in Daniel’s life. I wonder if we paused at the end of the day and reflected on our lives – the ups and down, the attitude, the loss of temper, etc, that may have taken place that day, would we have something to celebrate with God, or would we be ashamed of it? What about others, would they have gained wisdom or godly example from us, like the king did of Daniel, or would they stay far enough away from us? Let’s meditate some more on this…

DATE POSTED Thursday, 2021-11-18
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Daniel 6:26-27
TRANSLATION: The Voice Translation (Voice)

BIBLE TEXT: 26 I decree that all people everywhere who live under my sovereign rule ought to tremble before and fear the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, and He will endure forever. His kingdom will never be overthrown; His reign will know no end. 27 He saves and rescues those who fear Him, performing signs and wonders in heaven and on earth; For He has rescued His servant Daniel from the power of the lions.

APPLICATION: Isn’t it interesting how we look at the characteristics and mannerisms of a family member and we commit to never repeat much of what we see? As young teenagers, we tend to be especially critical of our parents and the things they do that embarrass us! ‘Never will we do that’ is what we say about their mannerisms, for we clearly see the flaws!! But isn’t it interesting to look back in our maturing age and see how we are so much like our parents?!! In our Scripture today we see an example of a hardened king whose heart was changed because of the faithfulness of a true, earnest and faithful son of the Almighty. Like many of us, the king was accustomed to telling his subjects what they should must do, and if they disobeyed, or took too long getting it done, their life was abruptly ended. However, when Daniel was brought into the picture, King Darius noticed something different about him, much like I would hope that others notice with true followers of Christ today. For Daniel came with his life already under the command of one King, and he was so faithful to that King that he was not about to be redirected against those principles, even to the point, and threat, of death, when commanded by an earthly king. Friends, this man’s faith caused a hardened king to not only recognize the power of the King of all kings to whom Daniel answered, but he went as far as using that experience to command his kingdom to also respect and honor the King/God of Daniel. This stopped me in my tracks, and caused me to question what someone might say at the end of a day that they may have spent around me. What about you friend? Would there be some traits that your friend(s) might consider adopting? Do you suppose that they saw Jesus at all that day? Would they be drawn towards the God you serve, or would they try with all their power to go in the opposite direction? To each one reading this devotional, may I suggest that you consider this today in the things that you say and in the things you do? Seek God as you start your day and ask Him to give you opportunities to let your light so shine, that others might catch a glimpse of your Master. It’s all about Him, my faithful friend! Let others see Jesus in everything you do, say or think. People still need the Lord! May their hardened hearts be turned towards your God because they saw evidence of Him in you!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Others are watching you, not for any good qualities of your own, but hoping to see the influence Jesus made in you!

PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, may Your light so shine through my readers and I today, that those to whom we come into contact with, will react much like King Darius did in observing Daniel. May others desire a relationship with our King and want to adopt Your commands and characteristics. I believe that as they do, and prove You faithful, they will feel compelled to draw close to You and give You full reign in their lives. May You be recognized and glorified through us today dear Lord, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. 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!

In Preparation For Your Mission

It appears to me like Paul was given great wisdom in helping those that he mentored in the ministry. In fact, I believe that God used Paul powerfully in his ministry, so that he could be an effective mentor to Timothy. I wonder who’s following in our footsteps? I wonder if our lives are suitable for others to follow, and they go out to be God’s representative and minister? Let’s look at some of the ways Paul felt prepared for the task at hand.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Timothy 2:14-17 (VOICE)

TEXT:  14 …... Warn them before God to stop their useless bickering over words. After all, splitting hairs does no good; it only ruins those forced to listen to their meritless arguments. 15 Timothy, do everything you can to present yourself to God as a man who is fully genuine, a worker unashamed of your mission, a guide capable of leading others along the correct path defined by the word of truth. 16 Stay away from ungodly babbling because it will only lead deeper into a godless lifestyle. 17 Once these empty voices start to speak, Timothy, they infect and spread; and soon the body is consumed with its cancer….

APPLICATION:   I’m not sure how many of us will ever be blessed to have the honor of mentoring someone entering into a ministry role, like Paul did, but we are often part of a church where new workers are called into ministry each year, and some of us may also be blessed to be part of a commissioning service for a new minister of the gospel, like Timothy was. This advice given by Paul is great for us to consider as we look into our own lives. Hopefully as we live these out personally, we will be in a much better position to say like Paul did in one of his other teachings: “now follow me, as you try to live a godly life” or as you endeavor to serve in your new assignment. You see, it is hypocritical to suggest that a new minister, teacher, worker, do some of these things, if we are personally doing an awful job at these things ourselves. For example, how can we suggest that they not get in arguments over words, or split hairs over individual interpretations, if we are so bad at doing that ourselves? Or that they should be genuine in their walk, if we are personally accused of living a double life? Or to not be ashamed of the gospel, if we are often embarrassed to have others know that we are involved in the ministry of our local church? So friends, I would encourage you to not brush this off by thinking that we now have some good advice to give ministers and/or workers entering into the ministry of Jesus Christ, but instead that we live out these principles ourselves so that we might give sound advice as we suggest that they follow, just as we follow Christ. I believe that only then, will the church of Jesus Christ see effective workers in the local church, and well prepared ministers and/or missionaries that we send out from our local churches. Lost people are anxious to see genuine Christians. Just as we aim to be exactly that, will we be effective and genuine in sending others out, just like us.

PRAYER:   Lord, please have Your perfect will and way in the hearts of each one that will meditate on this devotional today. May the words of our mouth and the meditation of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. May Your kingdom become richer as a result of us sharing our genuineness with others who will be impacted today, with the character and form of the One true God. 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!

How To Test For The Genuine Spirit of God

Ever been questioned, or have you ever questioned whether a Brother is genuine, or a Sister is sincere in her faith and teaching? I was in awe this morning as I read the Word, for John gives us pointers about this very matter.

Tuesday, 2021-03-16

Bible Reference: 1 John 4:2–3
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: Here’s how you test for the genuine Spirit of God. Everyone who confesses openly his faith in Jesus Christ—the Son of God, who came as an actual flesh-and-blood person—comes from God and belongs to God. And everyone who refuses to confess faith in Jesus has nothing in common with God.

OBSERVATION: Ever been questioned, or have you ever questioned  whether a Brother is genuine, or a Sister is sincere in her faith and teaching? I was in awe this morning as I read the Word, for John gives us pointers about this very matter.

APPLICATION: Not only will this help us identify the Spirit of God in others, but I believe this also helps us to examine ourselves and the kind of witness we portray to others. Some of the key points we are to consider and/or portray to determine, or prove, the genuine Spirit of God are: (1) Confesses openly about his/her/my faith in Jesus Christ; (2) Acknowledges that Jesus is the genuine, only Son of God; (3) Believes and declares that Jesus came to this earth in human form; (4) Believes that Jesus Comes from God; Belongs to God; And, as verified in other scriptures, He is also God. Friends, we are well aware of the awful feelings we have when we discover that we’ve been given a fake check, or a fake currency note, or perhaps encounter a person claiming to be someone they truly are not. The latter is comparable to us bringing damnation on ourselves when we claim to be a messenger, or witness, or representative of God, without having a first-hand experience with His Son Jesus. Friends, others will see straight through our fake-ness. Our Christianity is evidenced on the outside from a heart experience on the inside. Have you given Your heart to Jesus? Has He been allowed to control Your innermost emotions, convictions and decisions? Have you invited Jesus to take charge and to speak and work through you wholeheartedly? Can others see and feel the Spirit of God working in and through you on the outside and confirm the points suggested by John? Will they know you are a child of the King, or do you need to tell them? Will you commit to speak to God about this? He deserves genuine believers, because He showed His genuine love for us on Calvary in that He offered Himself, in obedience to His Father, to be a sacrifice for those who despised and hated Him. He showed real, genuine, love beyond anything mankind has ever experienced. He loved us with wide, outstretched arms! Do you love and appreciate my Lord enough today to be bold in your witness and tell others of His great love, even if you are certain that they will make a mockery of you? Will they recognize the spirit of God residing inside of you?

PRAYER: Dear God, I am amazed at the genuine love shown for me on Calvary’s cross. You were miraculously born into this world, lived among men and in spite of Your love for them, they crucified You. This is the unfortunate evidence of Your human experience here on earth. Thank You for continuing to accept humans into Your kingdom, and I especially thank You for accepting me. Please forgive us when we allow our peers to distract our walk with You. Lord, I am seeking Your help to make me more like You in every way while here on earth, so that others will not be distracted by a sense of false identity. I desire for them to see the hands and feet of Jesus, so that they may be drawn to You oh Lord. Please deal deeply in the hearts of those who will meditate on this devotional today, so that we might not only know You as Lord and Savior, but that we may follow Your example in everything we say and do. To God be the glory, for all that our surrendered, and fully dedicated lives might yield for the Kingdom of God. 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!

Transformed Relationships

Often times we will read about ways to, and often we are encouraged to, transform our lives into one that aligns with the will of God and in obedience of the Holy Spirit. Paul encourages us to meditate also on how these transformed lives will look to those that we connect with and call our friends. Perhaps you might be willing to join me in looking deeply into our personal relationships with others, and whether there is evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work within us as we fellowship with each other. Paul gives great guidance to us, so let’s dig in…

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-04-14
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 12:9-12
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: Let the inner movement of your heart always be to love one another, and never play the role of an actor wearing a mask. Despise evil and embrace everything that is good and virtuous. 10 Be devoted to tenderly loving your fellow believers as members of one family. Try to outdo yourselves in respect and honor of one another. 11 Be enthusiastic to serve the Lord, keeping your passion toward him boiling hot! Radiate with the glow of the Holy Spirit and let him fill you with excitement as you serve him.
12 Let this hope burst forth within you, releasing a continual joy. Don’t give up in a time of trouble,[e] but commune with God at all times.

OBSERVATION: Often times we will read about ways to, and often we are encouraged to, transform our lives into one that aligns with the will of God and in obedience of the Holy Spirit. Paul encourages us to meditate also on how these transformed lives will look to those that we connect with and call our friends. Perhaps you might be willing to join me in looking deeply into our personal relationships with others, and whether there is evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work within us as we fellowship with each other. Paul gives great guidance to us, so let’s dig in…

APPLICATION: Often times we struggle in relationships, both with family members and with friends. For there is jealousy between one another and envy and hard feelings that could quickly result, in fact, to the extent that we can’t stand to be in each other’s presence. Coworkers tend to be so competitive to reach for the top, or earn more commissions and/or recognition, so they step right over another employee, and may even do certain things to prevent that coworker from doing their best. Church members want to be in charge, or favored by the pastor, or perhaps they just can’t have their own way, so we see churches split or families leave the church and move on to another. I wonder if the result would be any different if we were to follow the advice of Paul in these two verses? Friends, Christians are to be deep into the Word at every opportunity, but not less frequently than daily, looking over God’s instructions to be sure that we live and love like Him. You see, God’s Word contains our template for love, it tells us about our Role Model, Jesus Christ. Our responsibility according to the Word, is to go and minister to the world so that all may know Jesus. Don’t you know that we are actually teaching them our evil ways when we act like the world, or like the above examples? Remember, our actions speak so loud that others will rarely hear what we are saying to them. I believe Paul is saying that we are not to be hypocritical. If we claim Jesus as Lord, then we are to live like Him and seek to squash all evil thoughts that Satan will buffet us with. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, we will seek to act like Jesus. and in no way follow the path of least resistance that are led by Satan – whose aim is to kill, steal and destroy the work of God. Friends, Jesus is coming soon and we must live with that in mind. Don’t dare live like the devil and think you’ll have time to seek forgiveness when you hear that Jesus is coming down the street. The Bible says that we must live in a state of readiness, because Jesus in no way needs our permission that the coast is clear for Him to come and gather His bride (the church – us). This means that we are to live and love like Jesus demands of us today. Don’t delay, please?

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, the creator of love, the One who showed ultimate love, please forgive me for making a mockery of living and loving like You exampled for me. You showed me how to live, and I have totally blown it. Thank You for Your servant Paul, who has reminded us that we need to live and love in ways that others might recognize as an imitation of God. This is impossible to achieve, as long as we continue to give in to the ways of this world. Father, please give my readers and I strength to be true victors in living our lives according to the model You displayed. Please help us to stay so in tuned with Your Word that it will not only impact the words from our lips, but the desires of our heart and the actions of our whole being. Lord, sadly, we must confess that we have ‘Christian’ family and friends that are living in sin, because they are acting just like Satan, and in similar ways to the above examples given. Please use this devotional today to speak to the hearts of those claiming You as Lord. Please also speak to those who have not yet accepted You as Lord, for today is the day of salvation, and there is no better time than today for them to seek Your power and Your strength so that they too might live and love like You. Lord, this old world is getting in extremely poor shape morally, for folk are becoming more and more hardened to their sin. Please, I beg You, do a mighty work in Your people today. Begin with us, Christians. Get us straight first, so that we may be Your hands and Your feet on the ground seeking to impact the lives of those that don’t know You. These things I ask humbly in Your precious name and for Your sake, AMEN!

Live Daily Declaring ‘To Whom You Belong’

We are known to others by our actions, our character, our level of commitment and our love. Think about it, these are many of the same characteristics that they remember Jesus by! Unfortunately, these are also some of the same characteristics that others will identify us as being no different to anyone else, and therefore children of the world, and led by Satan. Jesus is righteous and holy, so if we are to be identified with Him, we must live in that manner. Meditate with me as we consider how all this is possible.

Wednesday, 2019-10-09

Bible Reference: Ephesians 4:22-24
Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

Bible Text:  22 You were told that your foolish desires will destroy you and that you must give up your old way of life with all its bad habits. 23 Let the Spirit change your way of thinking 24 and make you into a new person. You were created to be like God, and so you must please him and be truly holy.

OBSERVATION: We are known to others by our actions, our character, our level of commitment and our love. Think about it, these are many of the same characteristics that they remember Jesus by! Unfortunately, these are also some of the same characteristics that others will identify us as being no different to anyone else, and therefore children of the world, and led by Satan. Jesus is righteous and holy, so if we are to be identified with Him, we must live in that manner. Meditate with me as we consider how all this is possible.

APPLICATION:  Evil people think evil, wicked things, so they live like evil, wicked people. Does your life show enough evidence of whose you are, that others will be convinced? When we surrender ourselves to someone, we generally release ourselves from the one to whom we were committed before. We become very miserable and confused when we detect any bleeding over of one allegiance into another. Think about it – when you marry someone and commit your life to that person, you are generally happy and living a blissful life together, until one of you start to reflect on an old flame, or perhaps another prospect that Satan has placed in your path. It just doesn’t work friend. The marriage is doomed to fail when this happens. Don’t you know then that the same thing happens in our walk with the Lord? Paul calls our mental escape from reality ‘foolish’, for we know that the minute we entertain a bad habit, it will pull us back into bad habits. The very moment that we give in to sin, we have taken our eyes off God, and it becomes easy for Satan to pull us back into his world. This is not abnormal for humans, that’s just the way we are designed. However, just as Paul teaches us in this scripture, we have an Advocate who is standing ready to help us overcome this weakness. It is the Spirit of the Living God that enters the believer, who helps us overcome our weaknesses and makes us into a new person. However, the Spirit does not take control of our will. We must willingly surrender ourselves to the Almighty God, and this is not just a one-time thing where you may have done so in a church service at a much earlier stage in your life. This is a daily surrender of your will to His will and His control. This is the only way that we can possibly expect to be like our creator. What a reminder in verse 24 – we were created to be like God – WOW! However the ending of that verse is also important, as it is the only way that we stand a chance of getting close to achieving this – we must strive to please God and to be truly holy, even as He is holy. When we live under the power and authority of the Holy Spirit, it will be evident to others when they come into contact with us.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for Your faithfulness to us, in spite of our weaknesses. Thank You for Your Word that teaches us the importance of living our lives to reflect our Master and our Lord, and for teaching us and warning us of the pitfalls that will distract us in our walk for You. Please continue to open our eyes and encourage our spirits so that we might be more determined than ever to live Godly lives, so that the lost might know that our Savior lives, and that Your love for them is unconditional, unlimited and available to them. I ask all this in the precious and all powerful name of Jesus, my Lord, AMEN!

How To Know That The Spirit of God Dwells in Someone

Ever been questioned, or have you ever questioned whether a Brother is genuine, or a Sister sincere in her faith and teaching? I was in awe this morning as I read the Word, for John, gives us pointers about this very matter.

Monday, 2019-03-18

Bible Reference: 1 John 4:2–3
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: Here’s how you test for the genuine Spirit of God. Everyone who confesses openly his faith in Jesus Christ—the Son of God, who came as an actual flesh-and-blood person—comes from God and belongs to God. And everyone who refuses to confess faith in Jesus has nothing in common with God.

OBSERVATION: Ever been questioned, or have you ever questioned  whether a Brother is genuine, or a Sister sincere in her faith and teaching? I was in awe this morning as I read the Word, for John, gives us pointers about this very matter.

APPLICATION: Not only will this help us identify the Spirit of God in others, but I believe this also helps us to examine ourselves and the kind of witness we portray to others. Some of the key points we are to consider and/or portray to determine, or prove, the genuine Spirit of God are: (1) Confesses openly about his/her/my faith in Jesus Christ; (2) Acknowledges that Jesus is the genuine, only Son of God; (3) Believes and declares that Jesus came to this earth in human form; (4) Believes that Jesus Comes from God; Belongs to God; And, as verified in other scriptures, He is also God. Friends, we are well aware of the awful feelings we have when we discover that we’ve been given a fake check, or a fake currency note, or perhaps encounter a person claiming to be someone they truly are not. The latter is comparable to us bringing damnation on ourselves when we claim to be a messenger, or witness, or representation of God, without having a first-hand experience with His Son Jesus. Friends, others will see straight through our fake-ness. Our Christianity is evidenced on the outside from a heart experience on the inside. Have you given Your heart to Jesus? Has He been allowed to control Your innermost emotions, convictions and decisions? Have you invited Jesus to take charge and to speak and work through you wholeheartedly? Can others see and feel the Spirit of God working in and through you on the outside and confirm the points suggested by John? Will they know you are a child of the King, or do you need to tell them? Will you commit to speak to God about this? He deserves genuine believers, because He showed His genuine love for us on Calvary in that He offered Himself, in obedience to His Father, to be a sacrifice for those who despised and hated Him. He showed real, genuine, love beyond anything mankind has ever experienced. He loved us with wide, outstretched arms! Do you love and appreciate my Lord enough today to be bold in your witness and tell others of His great love, even if you are certain that they will make a mockery of you? Will they recognize the spirit of God residing inside of you?

PRAYER: Dear God, I am amazed at the genuine love shown for me on Calvary’s cross. You were born into this world, lived among men and in spite of Your love for them, they crucified You. This is the unfortunate evidence of Your human experience here on earth. Thank You for continuing to accept humans into Your kingdom, and I especially thank You for accepting me. Please forgive us when we allow our peers to distract our walk with You. Lord, I am seeking Your help to make me more like You in every way while here on earth, so that others will not be distracted by a sense of false identity. I desire for them to see the hands and feet of Jesus, so that they may be drawn to You oh Lord. Please deal deeply in the hearts of those who will meditate on this devotional today, so that we might not only know You as Lord and Savior, but that we may follow Your example in everything we say and do. To God be the glory, for all that our surrendered, and fully dedicated lives might yield for the Kingdom of God. AMEN!

May Others Praise Jesus Because of You

This verse shows us what happens when someone sees the glory of God, even through something He may say or do through us (Christians). The emphasis here is ‘God’ and His mighty works, and not our abilities. Let’s meditate on how we might best align ourselves in this scenario.

Friday, 2019-01-11

Bible Reference: Matthew 5:16
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 16 You are like that illuminating light. Let your light shine everywhere you go, that you may illumine creation, so men and women everywhere may see your good actions, may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me, and may turn and praise your Father in heaven because of it.

OBSERVATION: This verse shows us what happens when someone sees the glory of God, even through something He may say or do through us (Christians). The emphasis here is ‘God’ and His mighty works, and not our abilities. Let’s meditate on how we might best align ourselves in this scenario.

APPLICATION: We have some who are super smart, and we have some who could use a lot of help, while others place themselves at the feet of Jesus with open hearts and ask God to fill them with His grace, His love, His wisdom and His mercy. Friends, it once again struck me as a very humbling thing that someone would actually praise God because of something I may have said or done! Of course, we want to extend praise and thanksgiving to the individual when we hear something of interest from them, because we want to encourage them. But can’t you see where there would be no better way of encouraging them, than for you to thank God: for creating them; for placing them in your path; for giving them the words that may have blessed you; or for giving them the financial capabilities to help you through some very tough times; or for speaking the right words to your son, that opened his eyes and heart to salvation? Wouldn’t it be awesome to walk up to your Sunday School teacher and instead of praising him for his giftedness in explaining the scriptures, you prayed with Him and glorified God for His gifts to this individual, which in turn brought a great blessing to you? Friends, as a worker in God’s kingdom, I could tell you right now that such an experience would help me change my mind from quitting, or lift my spirits beyond anything that might be said about my words or actions. You see, for those who are sincerely about the work of the Lord, it is all for His glory. So to hear Him being praised for any impact His ministry had through me, would be worth it all. May I encourage you to try this sometime, while I try to do the same? To God be the glory for everything that He does to get our attention or encourage us, even if He uses mere man to accomplish that!

PRAYER: Lord You are good and Your mercies are never ending. Thank You for all the ways that You get through to this humble servant. Thank You for all those that You have placed in the path of my readers and I, that encourage us personally, or remind us of Your awesome power and love. Please open our eyes to more miracles today that may happen right in front of us. Lord, may You be glorified at all times, especially in lieu of praises being addressed to us. We just don’t need that extra pride to deal with, as our strength, wisdom and direction comes from You alone. In Your name I pray, because it’s in You that I depend for my every move here on earth, so that You may be glorified. AMEN!

God Provides

Being only day two into my read through the Bible again, there are two things that have already caught my attention. Not only are we reminded that God really did know what He was doing, but we could also regain faith in our doctors, because we could hear their words echoed, especially as we read the focal verses today. Having studied the Bible some already, I believe that these two things are just the beginning of many things to come where it is reinforced for us that God is the designer and maker of life and all that we need to live this life to its fullest!

Wednesday, 2019-01-02

Bible Reference: Genesis 1:29Genesis 2:23-24
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: Genesis 1:29 Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant that grows on the earth and every fruit-bearing tree. They will be your food and nourishment.
Genesis 2:23 Adam: At last, a suitable companion, a perfect partner. Bone from my bones. Flesh from my flesh. I will call this one “woman” as an eternal reminder that she was taken out of man. 24 Now this is the reason a man leaves his father and his mother, and is united with his wife; and the two become one flesh.

OBSERVATION: Being only day two into my read through the Bible again, there are two things that have already caught my attention. Not only are we reminded that God really did know what He was doing, but we could also regain faith in our doctors, because we could hear their words echoed, especially as we read the focal verses today. Having studied the Bible some already, I believe that these two things are just the beginning of many things to come where it is reinforced for us that God is the designer and maker of life and all that we need to live this life to its fullest!

APPLICATION: How many times have we been told by doctors that it’s the ‘junk’ that we are adding into our bodies that hurt us, and kill us prematurely. Yet we could see right from the beginning of God’s Word, that He provided the means for us to use in feeding these bodies He blessed us with. However, we have chosen to use our own intellect and feed ourselves anything but what God designed for us. Over and over I hear my doctor’s recommend that I put more fruit and vegetables into my diet. My sinful self considers that to be more steak; more ribs; more chocolate; more ice cream; etc, etc. So as I reflect on our first focal verse, I must ask myself what might I say to God at times like I’m facing right now with high cholesterol; heart disease; liver issues and other challenges that we know are impacted by our choice of foods not on God’s list. Should I ask for His healing of the body impacted by my deliberate variation from His design taught in Scripture? Or shall I ask for strength and wisdom to live as He designed? The other thing covered in our second set of focal verses, is the beautiful story of God’s creation of woman. He saw that Adam needed something to make his life complete, so He made the perfect mate for him. And since that time, oh the mess we have made of this. God also told us in verse 24 of Genesis 2, that He designed this union of man and woman to be apart from mom and dad. In other words, a totally separate family. Friends, our marriages are in in mess. Those with ties to the church, are as bad as those with no church affiliation at all. Do all of the issues originate because of a flaw in this one principle? I will leave that up to you to meditate on with God, because the issue is way bigger than I or any other ‘man’ could dare answer. However, I believe that God is reminding us from the very beginning of His Book of Instruction, that He created woman from man, so that he may have a helpmate, have a loving partner, and that together they could populate the earth like He intended. Can we do any, or all, of these things from the messes we have made of marriage or the family? I have shared two very ‘hot’ topics today. May I suggest that instead of trying to get me straight on any ways that you feel I may have misrepresented the truth of God’s Word on these topics, that you actually begin a study of your own on these topics. God may have some reasons for you reading this devotional today, as He may want to get your attention about these matters that may need attention in your own life, or He may want to use you to help others who are struggling in these areas of life. Try your best to avoid the distraction of my words, and seek after what God might have to say to you through these verses. I believe that you could agree with me that we have a serious problem in each of the two areas I believe God challenged us with today. Seek God for what He might have you do today in these areas of your life.

PRAYER: Lord God, thank You for so carefully thinking of everything that we need here on earth. Thank You for directing me to these two very important issues that You covered so well, right from the very beginning of time. Please help us to return to the basics of life, as You intended, so that we might more diligently serve You and represent You in a community void of Your teachings and Your example. We need You Lord. AMEN!