Use Your Gift To Serve Others

Most of us would probably respond to my theme today with something like this: ‘But I don’t have any gifts’ or ‘All the gifts were given to my pastor’, etc. However, as you join me in this study today, we will discover Paul declaring that the Spirit distributes gifts to each believer, for the benefit of the church collectively. Know your gift and be ready to serve others who need help in that area of their life. Be mindful of the gifts of others so that you will know who to call on in times of need.

DATE POSTED Friday, 2022-06-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 1 Corinthians 12:7-11
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: The Spirit has given each of us a special way of serving others. Some of us can speak with wisdom, while others can speak with knowledge, but these gifts come from the same Spirit. To others the Spirit has given great faith or the power to heal the sick 10 or the power to work mighty miracles. Some of us are prophets, and some of us recognize when God’s Spirit is present. Others can speak different kinds of languages, and still others can tell what these languages mean. 11 But it is the Spirit who does all this and decides which gifts to give to each of us.

APPLICATION: A great start to this study is to recognize that these gifts referred to by Paul are supernaturally given to us by the Holy Spirit. That’s what Paul indicated. So we must not dare cower in a corner and say that we have no gift, otherwise we are calling Paul a liar, and the Holy Spirit inadequate for forgetting, or refusing to give us our gift. Perhaps we subject ourselves to the ploys of Satan, who would much prefer that we remain moot on the subject of our risen Lord, or any power that He may bestow on us. Paul was addressing this subject because the believers of his day felt they were totally unspiritual and didn’t deserve such power from on high. Doesn’t that sound so much like us today? Imagine our response if someone referred to us as holy, or spiritual, or a saint, or as powerful as Jesus Christ in performing miracles or mighty works of God. We would probably quickly refer them to our pastor, or church elder, for surely they would not be talking about simple old us, right? But unless we cast doubt on the holy Word of God, and the Holy Ghost inspired words of Paul, we must believe that God is more than able to empower us with His Holy Sprit and the gifts that He spoke to us about through His servant. So if you are convinced that you have been blessed with a gift from God, then the remaining piece of this should be natural for you: be sure to use your gift for the building up of the church and for the glory of God. How do you do that? I believe the Holy Spirit opened my eyes as I read this Scripture and showed me that when we come together as a church – a body of believers in Jesus Christ, some will have the gift of great wisdom, while others will speak with awesome knowledge. Accept these as gifts from God and allow that knowledge to saturate my mind. Others may portray unbelievable faith or even possess the power to heal the sick or perform other mighty miracles. Stop accusing them of being a showoff and give God thanks for His gift to these ambassadors. There may be some who prophesy, and some recognize the mysterious presence of God’s Spirit. While I may not have my primary language mastered, there may be some who will speak different kinds of languages, and still others who can tell what these languages mean. The bottom line is that we serve an outstanding and awesome God – in fact, He’s the One who created us all and the earth on which we reside. It is His Spirit who does all this and decides which gifts to give to each of us. In community, when one has a gift and shares it with others present, it’s like WE (collectively) have all these gifts! Oh that God may be glorified through each of His children, especially because they are using the gifts handed down to them from the Father, for His glory! Do your part dear friends. Use the gifts endowed upon you and bless every on that you come into contact with!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: What a mighty God we serve! Angels bow before Him. Heaven and earth adore Him! What a mighty God we serve! We must be an extraordinary for an extraordinary to consider giving us extraordinary gifts! Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost!

PRAYER: Lord, I now believe that we are foolish to ever say again that we are just an ‘ordinary’ person here on earth, for I have been reminded of Your greatness and also how special we are in Your eyes. No doubt if we would consider everyone that we come into contact with in that same light, we would never again look down on what You have created. Unfortunately some have permitted Satan to spoil the good in them, but Lord, I pray that You would once again today remind Your children of the value You have placed in them and of the love You showed for them on Calvary. Please speak intently to the hearts of the unsaved again today, especially the ones who will happen across this devotional. Please work in the lives of Your chosen people and help us to use the gift so lovingly given to us – for the betterment of the church – Your worshippers. 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!

May We Do It For YOUR Glory, God

At times we may wonder if life isn’t just filled with ulterior motives. For we tend to love in return for others loving us! We are quicker to praise our workers, if we receive praise ourselves! We gladly praise God when He has obviously been good to us, and seldom do we think to praise Him for who He is! But what if we did things with hopes that God would be glorified and praised by the one we helped? Let’s examine our motives for doing what we do, as we meditate on the prayer of Asaph in our Psalm today.

DATE POSTED Thursday, 2022-05-12
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Psalm 79:19
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: Help us, O God of our salvation!
    Help us for the glory of your name.
Save us and forgive our sins
    for the honor of your name.

APPLICATION: I believe that as I read this solitary verse, God spoke to me and asked what might it take for me to offer such a prayer. I know of a pastor who bargained with God for His protection in war, and he promised God that in return he would serve Him faithfully when he returned home, for the rest of his life. Praise God, that young man who prayed, returned home safely and became a pastor. He was able to retire fairly recently after many years of doing exactly what he promised God there in that bunker. For those who know the Lord, I believe we tend to follow in the footsteps of that pastor more times than not. But if we truly love the Lord and want to give Him the glory that He deserves, wouldn’t we seek to do everything with God in mind? In other words, wouldn’t we recognize and promote praise to God, rather than to ourselves? For loving us enough to provide for our every need each and every day? For blessing us for the people He has placed in our life? Wouldn’t we awake each day with a goal in mind to make someone’s life special without looking for any recognition or thanks for ourselves, but to make it known that God alone deserves the praise? I believe that anytime we could strive to see the name of Jesus lifted up by others, without looking for what’s in it for us, then we may come closer to aligning with the prayer of Asaph. Perhaps our prayer should always be: Lord, ease our pain, so that others will see our freedom, know that our release could only have come for You, so that they would raise a sweet hallelujah for the blessing of seeing You miraculously at work. Dear friends, look around you, mankind has become excessively greedy and self centered. This has caused us to almost lose hope in humanity. May we consciously stop to think of all that God unselfishly provides for us every day – especially those things that are beyond man’s ability to help us with – sunshine that provides much needed vitamins for our bodies; fish that has been proven to be one of the best meats for the body; rain that does more for our plant-life than any amount of running water we could pour on to them; good health that allows us to hold a job, earn money, and provide for our families; etc. As we count our blessings for all that God does for us voluntarily out of love, may we boldly bless others with much of what we have, so that they may also lift up holy hands and voices as they express praise and adoration to the Father for all that He provides for them!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: As we give to others from unselfish hearts filled with the love of God, may recipients always look up with thanksgiving and praise to the Almighty God, not to the one physically filling the hand that is reaching out to us.

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, You gave to us from a heart just like God. For those who have invited You into their hearts, may they realize today that they are but a channel for those blessings. That means, that they will realize that they are but a conduit that is filled with blessings by You, en route to others in need that they come into contact with each day! Teach us to never take on the attributes of the Dead Sea where everything remains locked up inside, and never passed along. May we freely give of everything we have, so that others may see the origin of those gifts being from Jesus alone. May they then glorify You, oh Lord for all that You are to them. 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!

Accountability Time for Talents Entrusted To You

There are some awesome thoughts to consider in today’s Scripture, in spite of this illustration being so familiar to many of you. I trust that you will not allow familiarity to obscure your openness to the Word of God and for what God has to say to you today about your God-given talents.

DATE POSTED Tuesday, 2022-04-05
WRITTEN AT: Astatula, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Matthew 25:14-15
TRANSLATION: New International Version (NIV)

BIBLE TEXT: 14 “Again, it (the Kingdom of Heaven) will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. 15 To one he gave five (talents) bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag,[a] each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey.

APPLICATION: Ever been in a setting where the audience was asked to share what their talents were? How did you respond? It’s unfortunate, but so many of God’s children will respond that they have no special gifts/talents. For the Kingdom of Heaven to be likened to this story illustrated by Jesus, I am led to believe that in spite of the reminders from Scripture, pastors, family and friends about how valuable we are to God, I believe He will still challenge us with a very important question when He welcomes us home: what did you do with the talent and gifts that I gave to you? Pastors will sometimes let up when we say we have no talent, but in God knowing how He specifically blessed each of us, I believe His question will be a lot more pointed. Surely God must shake His head in disappointment when we acknowledge that He messed up and didn’t bless us with a gift. I believe it becomes evident to God, and to the world, that we are a ‘1 talent’ kind’a person, because we have satisfied ourselves with burying the gifts given to us by God, instead of making ourselves available in service to the growth of the Kingdom. Friends, some are encouragers, some are consistent on their knees praying for God’s workers, some are excellent evangelists, some care for kids, while some are happy to care for the elderly or visit the shut-ins. Some will choose to clean the classrooms, maintain the flag, clean the pews after each service, or stand at the door and welcome everyone in with a loving smile and encouraging word. Unfortunately I don’t believe God gifted any with the talent to warm a pew, gossip, find fault with everything everyone else tries to do, nor pick apart the pastor’s sermon or his whereabouts. The bottom line is that God has given each of us at least one talent. Have we buried that talent, or are we making full use of it for the glory and magnification of the Kingdom of God? May God be honored by all that you are doing today for an enriched and growing Kingdom tomorrow. May God welcome you home with the words ‘Well done my child, I blessed you with talent and you have made full use of it by blessing my people and winning the lost each and every day. Good and faithful servant, enter into my Kingdom for ever and for ever!’

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God blessed us all with talent to be used for His glory. May we all be found faithful!

PRAYER: While it is easy for us to look at and appreciate all the wonderful talent You have blessed others with, I am extremely thankful for the reminder today that You have blessed me also, dear Lord! I pray that every one reading or listening to this devotional today will search long and hard to ensure that they are making full use of the talents You have given to them, for I believe that when put together we all form the root of a church on fire for the Lord. Bless each one dear Lord, and magnify each gift as we put it to use for the furthering of Your kingdom. May it be obvious to the lost that Jesus is alive, because they see evidence in the lives of His children. May this encourage them to surrender their heart to You, 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!

Here’s A Gift – Receive or Reject It

Christmas is fast approaching – a time that we have built around gift giving and receiving. How many gifts have you rejected, and how did the giver react if you refused a gift from them? God sent us a gift, and He has offered His gift to every child He created who would listen to Him and believe on Him. If you have accepted this awesome gift, let’s celebrate together, if not, I pray that God will be merciful to you and give you another opportunity to reconsider His offer. Think long and hard about this again today as you meditate on the Word of God with me.

DATE POSTED Saturday, 2021-10-30
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: John 1:10-12
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 10 He entered our world, a world He made; yet the world did not recognize Him. 11 Even though He came to His own people, they refused to listen and receive Him. 12 But for all who did receive and trust in Him, He gave them the right to be reborn as children of God;

APPLICATION: Hopefully this Scripture will mean more to you today than just another story in the Bible. To me, it serves as a reminder of how God must have felt when He realized that we were just finding it way too difficult to live a holy life through blood sacrifices, so He miraculously sent His very own Son to earth on our behalf. Jesus provides the way for us to one day meet with the Father and the Son in Heaven, IF we would accept Him as Lord of our life, believe on Him with all of our heart, and obey His commands as laid out in His Word. John tells us in today’s Scripture that although God created us, placed us into a world that He filled with beauty and adequate food, yet we had no desire to accept this awesome gift from God. Now, before you pounce on the terrible people of John’s day, let me remind you that the Word of God is a living and active word for us today also, and it seems like we have become worse than what we read about with the Pharisees, Jews and Gentiles of John’s day. Think about it friends, just as John said: God created us, placed us in a wonderful world that He created for us, blessed us with much to eat and drink, provided an ample supply of churches where we might worship with other believers and grow from their experiences with Almighty God, yet we carelessly reject this wonderful gift from God. Instead, we tend to choose very trivial priorities such as beach, sun, over-indulging at restaurants and night clubs, choosing to sleep in on the morning we should be heading to the place we have chosen to worship the awesome God who loves us just as we are. Friends, we have allowed Satan to interfere and drive us towards things that are very temporary and will distract us from eternity in heaven with our Maker. I have no doubt that God has placed these Scripture verses before us today as a reminder of what our family and friends are missing out on. Other Scriptures also show us that the day of Jesus’ return is nearing. That lends urgency to our prayers for God to touch the heart of unsaved loved ones, so let’s be about the work of the Lord today while there is still time.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: We serve a loving and awesome God who has presented His greatest gift ever, His very own Son, so that we might enjoy extreme blessings here on earth, and look forward to even greater things in Heaven! Lord I accept your precious gift, and I kneel at Your feet pleading for my unsaved loved ones.

PRAYER: You gave it all, so that we may have it all. Thank You Jesus for your precious gift! Please forgive us when we tread upon that gift lightly and do not accept the faithful promise from on high. Many of our family and friends have consistently rejected Your gift oh Lord, and I am pleading once again on their behalf that You would tender their hearts and drawn them unto Yourself. Lord, if there is a reader or listener who have not fully accepted Your gift of salvation, please may this be the day. 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!

No Greater Gift

As we near Christmas, we might question ourselves on whether we purchased the best gift possible for the one(s) that we love. But what if you were living away from town and all the stores, what might you give for Christmas? Perhaps, like Paul, we should stop and ponder what might be the greatest gift ever given to us! It might help us to stop the complaining about how little we have but instead about how much we are loved.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-12-18
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Timothy 1:15-17
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: 15 How true it is, and how I long that everyone should know it, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—and I was the greatest of them all. 16 But God had mercy on me so that Christ Jesus could use me as an example to show everyone how patient he is with even the worst sinners, so that others will realize that they, too, can have everlasting life. 17 Glory and honor to God forever and ever. He is the King of the ages, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God, and full of wisdom. Amen.

OBSERVATION: As we near Christmas, we might question ourselves on whether we purchased the best gift possible for the one(s) that we love. But what if you were living away from town and all the stores, what might you give for Christmas? Perhaps, like Paul, we should stop and ponder what might be the greatest gift ever given to us! It might help us to stop the complaining about how little we have but instead about how much we are loved.

APPLICATION: We often think of gifts at Christmas time. Those given and those received over the years. There were some Christmases where we may have been disappointed, because we didn’t receive quite the gift that we expected. But were there years that you received an awesome gift, although you weren’t expecting anything at all? Imagine this for a moment today: Saul had murdered many Christians, and had done everything imaginable to disrupt the work of God through His church. What gift would you give him? No doubt some of the very men and women that Saul persecuted, were hard core workers in the church, and possibly local pastors trying their best to share the love of Jesus Christ with the unsaved. Yet when God was ready to promote the work of His church, He didn’t choose one of the local pastors, but instead, the man that terrorized them and their ministries. Why? Why? Why? I’m sure this must have been asked multiple times while Paul began his earthly ministry under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. But can you imagine how humbled Paul was, to have avoided the pit of Hell for all the evil he committed, and instead be promoted as one of God’s key ministers? It is easy to see that this kind of love came from a level never experienced before. This was a unique love that Paul would have felt; one that the local church would have possibly questioned, but yet marveled at; a love that only God was capable of giving to an opposer of the faith; a love that you and I could look back on and better understand how God also forgave us of our sin; a love that helps us better understand how God could have permitted His only Son to hang on a murderer’s cross and die for the salvation of sinners – those that mankind would have hated or put to death. This expression of love by our awesome God, to someone that seemed so undeserving, should open our hearts and minds this Christmas season and help us to remember that there is no gift that we could give to a loved one, that compares to the tremendous gift given for our salvation, and our ultimate security in knowing that heaven is our final home – with our Savior. So let’s learn from this that instead of being quick to criticize, find fault in, dislike or even hate someone for their actions, that we should be like God in giving the greatest, unexpected gift possible, by seeking ways to forgive them and love them better, and eternally. We may have never murdered, nor fought against Christians, but like Paul, we were steeped in sin and far from God, yet He allowed His Son to die a cruel death so that we may know Him and know about His love for us. Know that you are no better than Saul was – a sinner. Know that God is the same today as He was for Saul/Paul, He loves us enough that He would turn our lives completed around and place us on a track destined for Heaven. Now that’s a ‘GIFT’ my friend! Accept it this Christmas and meet my God!

PRAYER: I am most thankful for the greatest gift ever given, one that is out of this world, and one that will last eternally – thank You Jesus! Paul told us about this gift, and many other Bible scholars have also celebrated this precious gift. It is challenging to imagine that God loved even us so much that He gave His all so that we may live with Him in heaven for all eternity. Thank You Lord for recognizing the value in Paul, and I thank You for looking on us as Your precious sons and daughters, in spite of our ugliness in sin here on earth. I’m forgiven and I praise God for His wonderful mercies and grace towards me. Please Lord, speak again today to my family and friends, especially those who will read this devotional. Draw them unto Yourself and fill them with the eternal hope of being in heaven one day soon with You. 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!

A Safe Place

I believe that few will need reminding that God is our ‘go-to’ in times of trouble, for we tend to feel helpless, and we know that we must refer the matter to One that can handle all matters considered impossible by us. This often forces the Christian and the unbeliever to call on God, for we know that He could do ALL things. But notice how Nahum made a distinction between how God might treat His own, vs those that distance themselves from Him. So I encourage all readers to take note of what you could expect from God, depending on your acceptance of our King.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-12-16
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: Nahum 1:7-8
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: The Lord is good. He is a safe place to go to in times of trouble. He takes care of those who trust him.
But he will completely destroy his enemies.
….

OBSERVATION: I believe that few will need reminding that God is our ‘go-to’ in times of trouble, for we tend to feel helpless, and we know that we must refer the matter to One that can handle all matters considered impossible by us. This often forces the Christian and the unbeliever to call on God, for we know that He could do ALL things. But notice how Nahum made a distinction between how God might treat His own, vs those that distance themselves from Him. So I encourage all readers to take note of what you could expect from God, depending on your acceptance of our King.

APPLICATION: Wouldn’t it make sense that for those who refuse the gift of eternal life from God, and choose to try and prove to the world that they could make it without Him, that they would also refuse to call on Him when life seems to be totally out of control? I would think so, but we know that’s not the way that life works. When disaster strikes, Christians are often called on by unbelievers to pray for them, or their loved one, who may be hurt or dying from some rare disease. How exactly might we pray? Our Scripture reminds us that Nahum was addressing the residents of Nineveh, the capital city of Assyria, and God revealed to him that there were some who would find it safe to anchor themselves in the shelter and protection of the Almighty, but there were some who would be totally destroyed because of their distant and hateful relationship with Him. Friends, we serve a God who is filled with love – more than we could ever imagine or understand, and while He will listen to the cry for salvation from those who despise Him, there will come a day when He would remove His hand a protection from them and allow death and destruction to take its course, unless they surrender their lives to Him. Do you think for a moment that in today’s society God will react in a different way? He has always hated sin, and I believe that He always will. I don’t know about you, but there are times that I must turn the television off, especially when I see reports of crime, vagrancy, and hatred against each other. Friends, sin abounds and individuals act in such evil ways, that God must wonder how could He possibly have been involved in their birth and upbringing. As you evaluate your life today, you should see where you will fit into one of two categories before God: 1). You’ve been washed by the blood of His precious Son and you are looked upon by God as being ’white as snow’. In fact, He sees Jesus’ perfect sinless life when He looks at you, and you are considered a son, or friend of the most High God; or 2). You have shown little concern about your sinful condition and have therefore rejected the invitation from Jesus Christ on many occasions. Because you have neglected God’s gift – His own precious Son, you have treated Him as your enemy. In verse 8 of today’s Scripture, you will note that God will destroy His enemies. To transition from group (2) over to group (1), you simply need to recognize the unconditional love that God has for His children – for you. Then accept His Son and begin celebrating the assurance of life eternally with the Master for ever! Nahum was merely reminding the Ninevehites of their plight. I feel like I have done just that for all who will read this devotional. May God grant you peace, wisdom and direction as you consider your eternity today, AMEN!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for saving my soul. Thank You Lord for making me whole. Thank You Lord for giving to me, Thy great salvation so rich and free! Words from an old song that remains as true today as when I first accepted You as Lord and Savior of my life! Now oh Lord, I come before You on behalf of many family members and friends who have taken You for granted. They’ve decided to make a go at this life, all alone. Please Lord, soften their hearts and help them see very clearly that their segregation for You makes it clear that they are rejecting Your free gift of eternal life. In our Scripture today, and throughout Your Word, You have declared that You will destroy Your enemies. It saddens me that they would reject the most precious gift available to them today and remain enemies of Yours. Lord, instead of Your plan for eternal damnation for Your enemies, may I beg You to speak softly to all who will read this devotional today and remind them once again about Your love, and Your gift. May today be the day of Salvation for many, please oh Lord. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Christmas Gift Ideas

At Christmas time we seem to easily find room in our hearts to be kind to others. In our verses today Paul reminds us of what all God did for us, and how that should lead us to do the same for others. So as we meditate on this today, may it stir up within us many ideas on how we might bless others at Christmas!

Friday, 2020-12-08

Bible Reference: Colossians 3:12-14
Translation: Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: 12 God has chosen you and made you his holy people. He loves you. So your new life should be like this: Show mercy to others. Be kind, humble, gentle, and patient. 13 Don’t be angry with each other, but forgive each other. If you feel someone has wronged you, forgive them. Forgive others because the Lord forgave you. 14 Together with these things, the most important part of your new life is to love each other. Love is what holds everything together in perfect unity. 

OBSERVATION: At Christmas time we seem to easily find room in our hearts to be kind to others. In our verses today Paul reminds us of what all God did for us, and how that should lead us to do the same for others. So as we meditate on this today, may it stir up within us many ideas on how we might bless others at Christmas!

APPLICATION: Most children are probably looking forward to Christmas because of the gifts they have asked for, and expect to receive. As adults, Paul has reminded us of the gracious gifts that are ours, in being a child of the most high God! Here are some of the gifts mentioned by Paul: 1). God has made us His holy people – imagine that – steeped in sin and very much a part of Satan’s army, yet when we felt the call on our life by Jesus, and surrendered our life to Him, we were adopted into the sonship of the Most Holy God! That is beyond comprehension, and could only be imagined through faith in the truth of God’s Holy Word; 2). God loves us – ‘Love’ is an awesome word that we use, and even abuse in our lifetime, but it takes on such a special meaning when the holy Son of God loves a child that has been so blatant in sin, and asked for His forgiveness. Oh that we may find it in our hearts to love like that this Christmas! But because of all that God blessed us with, here are some gifts that we may give to others, knowing that He will continue pouring out His gracious love to us: Show mercy towards others; Be kind to others; Be humble towards others; Be gentle to others; Be patient with others; Don’t be angry with others; Forgive others; and LOVE others. Friends, the best news of all about these godly gifts, compared to our usual gift giving, is that there will be no increase in credit card bills whatsoever!  So why not read over this devotional again as Christmas draws closer, and concentrate on all the gody gifts that you can extend to family and friends. Be instrumental in teaching them God’s ways and His teachings through your example this Christmas! Others just may see that you have a heart like that of Jesus, because you showed that you cared for them!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for Christmas, and the precious gift of Your Son! Thank You for teaching us about the many precious gifts that You bless us with, and then through your servant Paul, teaching us how we might extend to others the many gifts that You have showered on us. Please help us to make someone’s Christmas special this year, simply by showering them with the character of Your Son, and the godly gifts mentioned in our Scripture today. 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!

A Gift From God

In addition to the awesome news in our focal Scripture verse today, my Old Testament reading took me into Isaiah 43:25 (NLT): “I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again. Wow, to hear a message in the OT and then again in the NT, wouldn’t you say that God is truly getting His message across to us, that He is the One who saves, and He saves us because of His love, His ownership (sons/daughters), His grace (unmerited favor), and for His glory! This is about as good as it gets, so let’s spend some time meditating on how we could be so fortunate to be a part of this blessing!

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-07-14
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Ephesians 2:8-10
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believed. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. You are not saved by the things you have done, so there is nothing to boast about. 10 God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would spend our lives doing the good things he had already planned for us to do.

OBSERVATION: In addition to the awesome news in our focal Scripture verse today, my Old Testament reading took me into Isaiah 43:25 (NLT): “I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again. Wow, to hear a message in the OT and then again in the NT, wouldn’t you say that God is truly getting His message across to us, that He is the One who saves, and He saves us because of His love, His ownership (sons/daughters), His grace (unmerited favor), and for His glory! This is about as good as it gets, so let’s spend some time meditating on how we could be so fortunate to be a part of this blessing!

APPLICATION: I have two friends Who, in response to the question ‘How are you today’, will often respond ‘Better than I deserve’. I thought of that today as I studied God’s Word, for it truly felt from God’s promises that we are blessed to receive way more, and way better, than anything we could possibly have said, done or asked for in this life. God showed the Israelites, that regardless of what sins their forefathers had committed in the Wilderness, that He would blot out their sins because of who He is. You see, God wanted the Israelites to know, and for us to know, that there is no religion we could follow, or any principles we could adhere to, that we could ever become good enough, or sanctified enough to warrant His acceptance of our dirty selves into His kingdom. God is determined to show us that there is only one reason that He allowed His precious Son to die on Calvary, and that is for the redemption of our sin. You see, He created us to worship Him and to magnify His name in all the earth. When you consider the multitudes who have chosen to deny Jesus Christ and to ignore the love that He showed for us, don’t you see that they are the ones who commit awful crimes against mankind and try every trick in the book to derail the one trying to center their lives on Christ? They work in opposition to what God had planned for them to do. They are not the ones who will recognize the awesome love and concern of a God who sacrificed His Son for us, even while we were yet sinners. I believe that it is also very obvious that it is only the grace of God that will actually speak to the heart of a rebellious child. It is He who will melt that hardened heart and draw that child away from the spoil of this earth, and remind them of the only One who loves them in spite of all that they have done. In fact, I believe that God calls us out of this world and into His wonderful kingdom. This will require obedience from a softened heart, acknowledging that you are powerless to change anything about your life in and of your own power. This requires a heart set on claiming Jesus as Lord! Are you ready to turn the corner on your life my friend? If so, God has promised that His grace is sufficient, and that only because of His grace, He will extend to you the gift of eternal life. Please read my Footnote and be prepared to accept Jesus as Lord today.

PRAYER: Physical gifts that we receive here on earth is nothing compared to the wonderful gift You gave to us when You allowed the death of Your Son, Jesus, on the cross for our sin. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You Lord Jesus! Please touch our lives to never forsake the One who sacrificed for our sin, the One who gave Himself as a gift to us, so that we may not have to suffer for our sin, filth and disobedience to our Master. Lord, I am forever thankful, and look forward in great anticipation to worship You in person, in glory. Please forgive my readers and I for the times that we cave in to temptation and sin. We humbly ask that You fill us with power and wisdom so that we may stay faithful and true to You. Please soften the hearts of those who totally ignore all that You have to offer, and all that You did for them. Oh that they may desire to know You personally, and commit fully to Your precious gift – the joy of knowing Jesus as Lord and personal Savior. 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!

Accept and Use Your Gift

In Sunday School and in sermons we hear a lot about the Spiritual Gifts Spoken of by Paul in our Scripture today. However, be reminded from this Scripture that a gift is given to each believer by the Holy Spirit. So what does It mean when one says that they are just an attendee at church, or they are really unimportant, or they don’t run the show? Are they saying that the gift given to them is really unimportant in the whole scope of ministry? Think on these things as we study this Scripture today!

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-05-19
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Corinthians 12:7-11
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)

BIBLE TEXT: Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people! The variety is wonderful:

  • wise counsel
  • clear understanding
  • simple trust
  • healing the sick
  • miraculous acts
  • proclamation
  • distinguishing between spirits
  • tongues
  • interpretation of tongues.

All these gifts have a common origin, but are handed out one by one by the one Spirit of God. He decides who gets what, and when.

OBSERVATION: In Sunday School and in sermons we hear a lot about the Spiritual Gifts Spoken of by Paul in our Scripture today. However, be reminded from this Scripture that a gift is given to each believer by the Holy Spirit. So what does It mean when one says that they are just an attendee at church, or they are really unimportant, or they don’t run the show? Are they saying that the gift given to them is really unimportant in the whole scope of ministry? Think on these things as we study this Scripture today!

APPLICATION: How many times have you said it, that you are just a pion, or a nobody, that sneaks in the back door, listens to the sermon and quietly leaves to be about your own business. Now, in light of the above Scripture, I believe that it is evident that God saw fit to bless His children with a special gift, for very specific reasons. So when we choose to ignore the gift given to us, and in disobedience try to do something assigned to someone else, or hide our gift because it emanates from simple old me, can you imagine what a disaster that could be for the ongoing work of the Lord? When we ignore our God-given gift, we leave the church body in want. We leave an important part of the ministry undone, because we chose to ignore what God gave to us, to bless the church (others). Don’t you see that we are preventing the church from given praise to their almighty King? Nowhere in the Scripture does God say that He would withhold a gift from someone because they just can’t do anything to help others. In fact, the Word says just the opposite: when we are weak, or when we are incapable God shines through all the more. When we accept Jesus as Lord, we are not only asking Him to forgive us of our sin, but we want Him to give us power and strength and wisdom, so that He could use us for His glory. His Word says that He separates our sin from us as far as the east is from the west, so we can’t use it as a crutch to say that God won’t speak through a liar, or a drunk, or a criminal, or any other worldly sin that we may have been guilty of. He truly cleanses us so that His Father sees a bright and shiny star even in the lowliest of men, for the Father sees the blood of Jesus that was shed for us. So child of God, I pray that you would receive a similar message from this Scripture today as I did. When the church (others) needs a pianist to help keep the congregation in tune during our worship time, may that person be at the piano. When the pastor is ready to preach, may he do so boldly knowing that the prayer warriors that God placed in his congregation is on their job and has been praying for hours before that pastor stands to preach. When the janitor comes to clean the church, may he bless each and every pew as he walks through picking up litter and preparing the books for others to sing from during the next service. When a fellow believer reports the loss of a loved one, may they be overwhelmed with love, as their fellow worshippers obediently accepts the call of the Master to take care of the widows and widowers. Friends, it is evident that the list of gifts mention in the Word is not one that you may choose from, but rather a sample list of gifts that God uses to bless us with, so that we might shine as His children. For those without Christ, may I suggest that you urgently seek His face while you still have time. We know from the Word that Jesus will return at a moment that we least expect, and that it could be today – even before you read all of this devotional. Don’t delay any longer, seek Him now and accept His offer of salvation NOW. Jesus wants to use you for His glory also, and welcome you home to heaven when the Master says ‘it’s time’!

PRAYER: Lord we often say to others that God will take away their gift if they don’t use it, but how often do we sit back when volunteers are needed to complete a task, teach a class or visit a shut-in. Based on Your Word, I believe that You set us aside as warriors in our field, and that You gave us extra power to do Your work in such a way that others would be blessed and that they would sing sweet praises to You. This means that when we allow Satan to sway us towards disobedience and from using our gifts as You intended, that others hurt, or perish, or go without and often have no will to sing Your praises. Precious Lord, what we have is Yours alone, please touch Your children once again and remind us from whence we came. Remind us of Your awesome power, especially when we feel inadequate and unfulfilled. Please have Your will and way in our lives and bless all those that we come into contact with today, so that You may be glorified in all things. 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!

We Have Enough!

In your minds, I would like for you to imagine that you are looking at your neighbor in church when the pastor announces that he wants the congregation to STOP GIVING, because the building fund is fully funded and there is no need for additional funds! Can you imagine the shock? Yet in our time together today we will see where Moses did exactly that – he told the people that there was no need of additional gifts, for there was enough given already! Let’s dig in to learn more about this strange idea!!

Tuesday, 2019-10-22

Bible Reference: Exodus 36:4-7
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text:  4 Finally the craftsmen who were working on the sanctuary left their work. 5 They went to Moses and reported, “The people have given more than enough materials to complete the job the Lord has commanded us to do!” 6 So Moses gave the command, and this message was sent throughout the camp: “Men and women, don’t prepare any more gifts for the sanctuary. We have enough!” So the people stopped bringing their sacred offerings. 7 Their contributions were more than enough to complete the whole project.

OBSERVATION: In your minds, I would like for you to imagine that you are looking at your neighbor in church when the pastor announces that he wants the congregation to STOP GIVING, because the building fund is fully funded and there is no need for additional funds! Can you imagine the shock? Yet in our time together today we will see where Moses did exactly that – he told the people that there was no need of additional gifts, for there was enough given already! Let’s dig in to learn more about this strange idea!!

APPLICATION:  I wonder why things may have changed? Whether we talk to an individual or a well established church, there always seems to be a cry for help in their financial needs. First of all in our Scripture today, it is clear that not all of the people freely gave to the cause. In 2:21 we are told that those whose hearts were stirred by the message from God through Moses, responded to the plea for help in providing material for the building project. This sounds pretty much like our churches today, don’t you think? As a result of surveys, we are told that less than 20% of the people do more than 80% of the giving! So why have the others ignored the plea? Friends, I believe that the Word of God is clear on this. Just as the Word tells us that if we humble ourselves and pray, then God would save our nation, I believe that many of us need to humble ourselves to recognize that we have nothing personally to brag about. It is because of God’s grace that we have the health to work, the job to go to, and the income to survive. If we truly acknowledge that fact, why would we withhold giving to God in proportion to what He has blessed us with? The Word gives us guidance – at least 10%. Because there are other biblical references to ‘first fruits’, I believe that the guidance actually refers to 10% of your gross income. Now because our relationship is one built around love, I don’t believe that we would dare use this as a legalistic demand. People ‘in love’ will generally give freely, and way more than might be expected of them. In a love relationship, there is no such thing as excuses why we can’t give 110% of ourselves to our mate. Should there be an excuse, or a reason, when it comes to giving to our Lord and His earthly work? Don’t you know that if each person in our congregations gave like this, that our pastors would frequently be faced with an overflow of income, where pastors and church leaders could decide to expand the ministry after meeting all the needs that they are aware of? We are told that more than 70% of our county have no church affiliation, or relationship with Jesus Christ, so is there a need to to expand our ministries? God may hold us accountable for not giving as we should to reach the lost. Furthermore, I believe that the stress level on our pastors will be drastically reduced, when they don’t have to worry about funding the projects that God has shown them might be necessary to grow the ministry. When we receive our paycheck, there is no negotiating on amounts taken out for government taxes, why should there be constant decision making on how much to give towards God’s work? Determine in your own heart how much you will give and stick to the plan Brother and Sister. We are promised that we will receive more than we could ever imagine or expect. Furthermore, we will receive in proportion to what we have given. May I encourage you to always expect more from God, knowing that you have given in abundance towards His work? Furthermore, rejoice, knowing your loving and all powerful God will abundantly bless you and meet your needs!

PRAYER: Father, it is exciting to see how You work. We give to bless others, yet You wind up also blessing us in return! There just isn’t a way that we can out-give You! Thank You for being so generous, loving and kind to us! I would say that we are so undeserving, but then I am reminded that even while we were undeserving, You sent Your only Son as a sacrifice for us, so that we might have a chance at eternal life in heaven with You. Thank You Father! Thank You Jesus, Son of God! Lord may we learn to give in similar fashion – regardless of whether we feel the receiver or the project is worthy of our love, may we react in obedience to Your will for us. Please bless us as we give, so that our own needs may be met each and every day. May souls be touched for You because of our obedience in giving. I ask these things humbly, although undeserving, but in the powerful name of our all-giving Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, AMEN!