Gifts – The Reason They Are Given

From the title, one might be interested in knowing why they were given certain gifts, and as we approach the Christmas season, one might additionally ponder the sort of gift they might receive this year – based on their successes during 2022. But these type of material gifts are all man’s idea of pleasing those we love, with hopes of reciprocal giving to us. The idea of ‘gifts’ actually originated with God, for He gave us several gifts that we read about in the Bible. Today we will especially look at the gifts given to the church. Join me as we delve into this.

DATE POSTED Thursday, 2022-10-20
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Ephesians 4:11-13; 16;
TRANSLATION: GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

BIBLE TEXT: 11 He also gave apostles, prophets, missionaries, as well as pastors and teachers as gifts ⌞to his church⌟. 12 Their purpose is to prepare God’s people to serve and to build up the body of Christ. 13 This is to continue until all of us are united in our faith and in our knowledge about God’s Son, until we become mature, until we measure up to Christ, who is the standard. 
16 He makes the whole body fit together and unites it through the support of every joint. As each and every part does its job, he makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

APPLICATION: I believe that many people look at ‘gifts’ based on their own life-experiences and their expectations in life. Often people seem to recognize and appreciate those gifts that have an unexpected financial benefit to them and/or their family. But what about God’s children, what do we consider to be an unexpected, or undeserved gift from God? Let’s break for a minute to reflect on the greatest gift given by God to the world – His Son. Is this something anyone of that day ever expected? I don’t think so, but I do know that God saw how impossible it was for mankind to become, and stay, righteous like His is. So, we are introduced to ‘grace’ through this gift – for it was something we needed, but totally didn’t deserve. In today’s Scripture we recognize additional ‘gifts’ that God gave to us, but even for those who attend church, you not have ever looked at church officials as ‘gifts from God’? Many look down on pastors, because Satan plants it in your mind that they are only doing the job because they could find nothing else to do, or they are unqualified for anything else, or they are in the ministry for the money that Christians give in the offering plate each time the church doors are opened. But friends, even though opinions are many, and they are varied, yet we find in the Scriptures today that God told us through His servant Paul, that Pastors, Apostles, Prophets, Missionaries, and Teachers are ‘gifts’ to the church for very specific reasons, and I believe these reasons are still very valid today for our churches. Here are the reasons mentioned:
-*- To prepare God’s people to serve – attending church is not a spectator sport, it’s a time we come together for corporate worship to the one true God. Each member of God’s army must be trained to share what God has shared with them. Respect, promote and faithfully attend training sessions by your church leaders, for it’s their job to prepare you for serving!
-*- To build up the church – Throughout the week we go to work, and often interact with many people of the world. I believe God wants us to see how different He is than anything we could encounter in the world, so as we enter His house and commune with Him, I believe that we refill our heart, spirit and mind with the spiritual food necessary to go on.
-*- To be persistent in their work until certain guidelines are met– I can’t imagine this, but God’s ways are different to our ways, and the Scripture says our church leaders are required to continue their work until there is unity in the faith. There are hundreds of denominations and more churches than we can imagine. This happened because of differences of opinion and preference in leadership. I believe that one day God will tear down those walls and see His children come together as one people – His Children! Oh that we could see that here on earth, long before we get to the one heaven with the one God that we know and love.
Friends, God’s promises are true, and He said that these gifts will continue until His church is united in love and fellowship, and able to get along as THE body of Christ. This will not only result in unity of the body, but also facilitate each part of the body working together. From where I’m standing, this could take a very long time, and it will take the powerful hand of our awesome God to help us put aside our difference as men and women, so that we might prove to the world that we are indeed ‘Children of the one true God’. So let me encourage you to use this reminder to help you look much differently on your church leaders and be responsible as individuals to thank God every day for His ‘gifts’ that He poured out to His church.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: I can’t imagine, but anxiously await, the unification of God’s people, and that they be lifted up in love. Perhaps then the unsaved will see Jesus at work and want a part of that unity!

PRAYER: Lord, it seems like what we see here on earth is so different to what You want for us, Your people, as declared in Your Word. Faith is all that matters, for we are reminded in Your Word that: You can do all things; Your ways and thoughts are different to ours; You will honor Your promises to Your faithful children; and You want us to be perfect and holy, just as You are perfect and holy. Lord, there are so many that need a Savior, and so many that refuse to hear Your Word. Please impress upon Your workers the importance of respecting and obeying those who You have sent as ‘gifts’ to us. Draw us close each and every day, for we want to be just like You, Lord. Please bless Your church, Your workers and Your children today so that we might be a blessing to others as we serve. 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!

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!

More Than Enough

Moses obviously had the secret for encouraging his people to give towards projects ordained by God. Think about the difference between the challenges we face today, and the overflow that Moses experienced. What’s the difference? Let us meditate on that today!

Thursday, 2019-04-04

Bible Reference: Exodus 36:3-5
Translation: GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Bible Text: Moses turned over to them all the contributions the Israelites had brought for the work of constructing the holy place. But the people still kept bringing him freewill offerings every morning. Finally, all the skilled craftsmen who were working on the holy place stopped what they were doing. They all came to Moses. They said, “The people are bringing much more than we need for doing the work the Lord commanded us to do.”

OBSERVATION: Moses obviously had the secret for encouraging his people to give towards projects ordained by God. Think about the difference between the challenges we face today, and the overflow that Moses experienced. What’s the difference? Let us meditate on that today!

APPLICATION: What are you finding are the greatest financial challenges at your church, and in your own life? Are you and your church convinced that God has you on a mission for Him? Are you just as convinced when you feel collectively that He is wanting to see you continue expanding your ministry for the purpose of ministering to more in your community who need to know Him as Lord? What are some of the first obstacles that you think of? Provisions are probably right at the top of the list, because I believe that we take our eyes off the ministry needs that God prompted us towards, and we begin looking inward towards how will we provide the buildings and people to accomplish the associated growth that God calls us to. For you see, when God calls us to a mission that He ordains, He knows exactly what we will need to pull that ministry off. We suddenly see certain people showing up, that may later become helpers, and we may even see giving increase. We may see miracles increase, as God draws us closer to the Miracle Worker, and grows our faith to lean on Him rather than the limited resources that we often see through the limitations of mere man. Friends, wouldn’t it be awesome to hear your pastor say one morning at church, that it’s OK that you limit your giving, as the church has been extremely blessed financially and currently not only meeting its own budget, but have been helping many other needs that it is aware of! I believe that Moses showed us that if we believe in the Lord, our God, to direct our path, reach the lost in our community, and grow the church for His glory, then let’s not think for a moment that He will call us to increased ministry without having a well defined plan on how we will accomplish the housing of that ministry and the workers to accomplish the work. Is it not a simple act of faith, in knowing that if He calls us to it, He will see us through it? How’s your faith my friend? Do you have to see it to believe, or do you actually have faith to believe in our awesome God?

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for Your blessings on me. Thank You Lord for blessing the ministries of Your local churches in my area. Oh that we would always keep our eyes fixed on You, and not allow the distractions of this world to hold us back in accomplishing all that You call us to do. Lord, we are Yours, and we want You to accomplish Your work in our midst. We humble ourselves before You and ask that You use even us in Your ministry to reach the lost in our communities. AMEN!

A Gift You Should Give Your Children

Christmas seems to be all about gift giving, in remembrance of the greatest GIFT ever given for us – our Lord Jesus! But ‘gifts’ come in many forms, and today we want to meditate on the greatest gift that we could pass on to our children, or to those who know us. Come, meditate with me as we look into the Word of God.

Friday, 2018-12-14

Bible Reference: Isaiah 38:18-19
Translation: Amplified Bible (AMP)

Bible Text: 18 “For Sheol cannot praise or thank You, Death cannot praise You and rejoice in You; Those who go down to the pit cannot hope for Your faithfulness. 19 “It is the living who give praise and thanks to You, as I do today; A father tells his sons about Your faithfulness.

OBSERVATION: Christmas seems to be all about gift giving, in remembrance of the greatest GIFT ever given for us – our Lord Jesus! But ‘gifts’ come in many forms, and today we want to meditate on the greatest gift that we could pass on to our children, or to those who know us. Come, meditate with me as we look into the Word of God.

APPLICATION: With Christmas quickly approaching, I believe that most of us are probably trying to narrow down what we will possibly give that child of ours, who seems to have everything already. No doubt there are others that we are just as concerned about getting just the right gift for as well, and we will often go into debt just to get the right gift that they might appreciate. But wait just a minute friend. Can you remember the best gift you ever received from a grandparent? How about a parent, or spouse or child of yours? I can think of certain acts of love; certain words of praise; certain very special family times, like the night dad told his kids about the call of God on his life that led to his salvation that day; certain family times of Bible reading; certain times that, as a family, we called on God for healing for each other, like when my dad was being treated for ulcers, when in fact he had experienced a heart attack. Friends, our Scripture is telling us that we may no longer hear about these things from grandma or grandpa, or dad, because just as declared in verse 18 above, they may have passed on from this world. So how then will our children know these things? Let me suggest that we make some family traditions of our own. I don’t believe that we would spoil the ‘fun’ times of what our kids have found in Christmas trees, gifts, santa claus, and the likes of a worldly Christmas, but in verse 19 we are being counseled to share our ‘God’ experiences with our children. I trust that we all will make time to share with each other during our Christmas celebrations this year.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You have been so gracious to us;  so loving; so kind; so forgiving; and such a provider of glorious gifts that creates a sense of anxious expectation about Your return to take us up to glory! Lord, please give us opportunity to share these gifts with our family this Christmas, and oh that we may have opportunities to also share Your love with others that we come into contact with. This may be the greatest gift we give this Christmas, and it may be more special to the recipient than anything they will find under the tree. Make us bold in our approach, but humble and loving as we remind ourselves of our unworthiness before such a righteous and awesome God. Blessed be the name of the Lord! AMEN!

Reflect His Caring Heart

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, 2018-12-07

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 here are some gifts that we may give to others, in return for 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, 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 may just see that you have a heart like that of Jesus, because you care for others!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for Christmas! Thank You for teaching us about the many precious gifts that You bless us with, and 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, by showering them with the character of Your Son, and the godly gifts mentioned above. AMEN!

Your Gift From God

Peter is reminding us that God has given each of us a grace gift. One that could only be attributed to God, and one that will bring joy to the Father’s heart every time we use it. Have you recognized your gift, and do you feel like you are using your gift to its full potential? Let’s meditate on the goodness of our God today as we reflect on our gift that only God could grant to us!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   1 Peter 4:10-11 (TLB)

TEXT:  10 God has given each of you some special abilities; be sure to use them to help each other, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings. 11 Are you called to preach? Then preach as though God himself were speaking through you. Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies so that God will be glorified through Jesus Christ—to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen.

OBSERVATION:   Peter is reminding us that God has given each of us a grace gift. One that could only be attributed to God, and one that will bring joy to the Father’s heart every time we use it. Have you recognized your gift, and do you feel like you are using your gift to its full potential? Let’s meditate on the goodness of our God today as we reflect on our gift that only God could grant to us!

APPLICATION:   I believe it would be awful if we stood before God on Judgment Day and, when asked about our special grace gift given to us by our Father, we respond with “what gift?”, or “I used my gift daily and I benefited greatly from it every day”, or something similar. I can’t imagine how God would respond, for He uses Peter in our focal verses today to tell us that we are to use our gifts to bless others. Friends, I believe that these precious gifts given by God, cannot be learned in seminary, Sunday School, or through weekly preaching services. For God sees the needs of His children, and then blesses an unsuspecting faithful child of His to just go about their day in obedience to Him. As we do, I believe that we will see hearts warmed; discouraged warriors lifted up and encouraged; beaten down pastors and church leaders rejuvenated and revived to go on preaching and teaching; the mentally challenged individuals will be encouraged that someone actually cares about them; the sick, the lame, the blind and the critically ill will see a glimmer of hope as they feel the touch of their creator reaching deep inside their weakened bodies. Friends, notice that in all of the examples that I gave you, we are helpless to do any of those things, but with Christ we are more than conquerors! So I believe that God is asking us today to make good use of all that He has blessed us with, and with all that He gives us each day, so that He might be glorified in all things – especially those things that He does through us. Be obedient and faithful dear one.

PRAYER:  Lord, You are so precious and gracious to us. Thank You for using even us to participate in the awesome work that You perform each day. It seems like more today than ever before, we see and hear about so many that are hurting and dying of incurable deceases. Thank You for reminding us of Your great power, You love, and Your ultimate desire to bless Your children. Lord, we make ourselves available to You. Please help us to stay so in tuned with You that You will make full use of the empty vessels that we present at Your feet in need of a fresh filling from You. May You be glorified in all things today, especially those things in which You may choose to allow our participation. AMEN!

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

Attributes To Help You Be Useful To God

Peter started off his book by telling us how blessed we are to be called children of God. He shared that we are truly a very blessed people, and because of these blessings we should be careful to make every effort, and with the help of God, add attributes to our lives that would make us more like Jesus and useful for His service. 

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-07-13
SCRIPTURE

From:

2 Peter 1:5-8 (ERV)

Text:

5 ……do all you can to add to your life these things: to your faith add goodness; to your goodness add knowledge; to your knowledge add self-control; to your self-control add patience; to your patience add devotion to God; to your devotion add kindness toward your brothers and sisters in Christ, and to this kindness add love. If all these things are in you and growing, you will never fail to be useful to God. You will produce the kind of fruit that should come from your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
OBSERVATION:
Peter started off his book by telling us how blessed we are to be called children of God. He shared that we are truly a very blessed people, and because of these blessings we should be careful to make every effort, and with the help of God, add attributes to our lives that would make us more like Jesus and useful for His service. 
APPLICATION:
Wouldn’t it be a really neat thing to look around your Sunday School class, or even your church and recognize one or more of the attributes mentioned in these verses, in different folk. We hear preachers say all the time that they don’t want us to attend church services to soak and sour. But don’t you know that God’s heart would be gladdened if He saw each of us striving more and more each day to welcome one of these gifts from God and then work hard to develop and apply them to our lives? Don’t you know that we would see a reduction in gossiping, insults, ill-feelings and hatred going on in our churches? Wouldn’t it be really encouraging to see the lost flocking to our doors because they ran into a church member during the week and saw these attributes of God alive and active in their life, so they followed up by attending to see if they could also attain those same gifts from God? Friends, if the Holy Spirit is truly living inside of us and we have given Him full reign of our lives, I truly believe that He will guide us into all righteousness and to act more like God every day. When people see this, they immediately think of God. If it takes us telling the average person that we are a Christian, then I believe that very quickly they will see through our flaws or our hypocritical lifestyle. Let me encourage you to join me in striving for righteousness; faith; goodness; knowledge; self-control; patience; devotion to God; kindness and love, for as God blesses us with these attributes, we will become truly useful to Him!
PRAYER:
Lord God, You are awesome in every way. You took ‘pieces of clay’ and made them Your perfect creation, so that we might love, serve and worship You. Seeing that we are still a work in progress, these gifts that you encouraged Peter to share with us today, will only serve to draw us closer to you; be more like You in every way; plus, encourage and motivate others that we come into contact with. Strengthen us today Lord, so that we may serve You better and encourage others along the way. I ask these things, all for Your glory, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Gifts From God!

Moses wanted his people to be reminded who was in charge of the mission they were about to take, for there was nothing they could have said or done that could warrant the overthrowing of the much larger towns they would encounter on entering into the Promised Land. If God was to act based on the goodness of the Israelites, they probably would never have made it out of the wilderness. I believe that we could see where there would be lots of lessons in this story for us also! Let’s apply this Scripture to our lives…

Post Date:

Saturday, 2017-07-08
SCRIPTURE

From:

Deuteronomy 9:4-6 (VOICE)

Text:

When the Eternal your God has driven them out ahead of you, then don’t begin to believe He gave you this land because you’re so good and righteous! It’s just the opposite; He is giving you their land because those other nations are so bad! It’s not because you’ve conducted yourselves so well or because you have such pure hearts that you’re going to take the land; the Eternal your God is driving out those other nations ahead of you because they’re so wicked. He’s keeping His word, the promise He made to your ancestors, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. I’ll say it again: the Eternal One your God isn’t giving you this good land because you’re so good. You’re stubborn, obstinate people.
OBSERVATION:
Moses wanted his people to be reminded who was in charge of the mission they were about to take, for there was nothing they could have said or done that could warrant the overthrowing of the much larger towns they would encounter on entering into the Promised Land. If God was to act based on the goodness of the Israelites, they probably would never have made it out of the wilderness. I believe that we could see where there would be lots of lessons in this story for us also! Let’s apply this Scripture to our lives…
APPLICATION:
We may tend to look at this story as such an obvious case. After all, we remember from reading the story about how the Israelites turned their hearts away from God right from the very beginning of their journey, and very soon after seeing God’s miraculous hand at work at various times. I believe that God knew that as these people entered the land, overcame towns and settled in, there would be a higher likelihood of them pitching a party to celebrate, rather than a huge praise service to give God the glory. So I feel like God inspired Moses to warn them ahead of time. So friends, what is God pointing out to us through this scripture? I believe that a fair number of us are willing to help the poor; visit the sick; encourage the depressed and console the mourning, but what do we expect back? Please don’t quickly respond ‘nothing’, because we gloat in our achievements when we hear our names mentioned in recognition, or mentioned in the newspapers for having helped someone. May I suggest that you try seeking God’s face for Him to show you where the needs are? Then try meeting those needs without calling your pastor to see if he approves, for you are following God’s instructions. If you can meet the need anonymously and not tell anyone else that you did it, I believe you will have something to celebrate with God. Think about it, when God blessed you with the income and abilities to help others, He didn’t send a message to your pastor so he could have the church celebrate your income and talents. Therefore, when you give, as unto the Lord, give in His precious name, so that He might be glorified! He gave it to you and you shared some it. Since it all originated with Him, then He deserves the credit and the praise! Start by tithing to your local church, as instructed in Scripture. When you’re comfortable with that, and realize the praise that God receives through the work of the local church, and that you survived financially in spite of giving a tenth right off the top, then you will be comfortable taking that to the next level. God told us to test Him and see if He wouldn’t bless us beyond anything we could give or imagine. Try it friend!
PRAYER:
Father, who are we that a King should die for us and provide the only means into heaven to live eternally with our awesome God? The love, the gift of eternal life, the provisions of each day and the gift of family and friends, way exceed anything we could ever have thought or planned. The gift of the Holy Spirit to help us in our daily walk, makes this whole journey on earth possible. Thank You Lord Jesus for every gift You have given to me. May I live the life You have designed for me, so that all that I do and all that I am, may bring glory to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!