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

Archive for the ‘Give it up’ Category

Kingdom Giving

Monday, 2019-01-14

Bible Reference: Matthew 6:3-4
Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text:  So when you give to the poor, don’t let anyone know what you are doing.[a Your giving should be done in private. Your Father can see what is done in private, and he will reward you.

OBSERVATION: I find it fascinating that the Bible gives us direction from our Father on every aspect of life. However, we often hear people say that they don’t want to be told about their giving, because what they give ‘is their business alone’. God is very thorough in His Word though, for he tells us what we should do, even in our giving. Let’s meditate today on this very sensitive aspect of every person’s life.

APPLICATION: This is probably one of the most sensitive matters that a pastor can preach on, as parishioners often allow this subject to not only challenge their hearts, but they tend to start comparing what they give to what they believe others are giving, with hopes that they could feel better about themselves. In the business world, giving to any need in the community is a marketing opportunity, because the business owner wants you to know that they are giving back to the community from all that they make off you, in profits. Of course, this is done to help you feel good about such a company, and therefore spend even more money with them! For individuals, we might often see a case of public display, because some feel good about the public praise they receive wherever they go. So what about the Christian, for that’s what most readers of this blog will look for. I believe there are two aspects that we need to seek God’s guidance on. First of all, how much do we give to the church? I believe it is clear in God’s Word that we should joyously give at least 10% of our gross earthly income, and that it should be given to your local church, with no strings attached. I was once told by an attorney that in my will, I was trying to control well beyond the grave!!! Unfortunately, we tend to think a lot like that when it comes to church finances, for we find fault with how the offerings/funds are being used and, of course, since we have all the right answers (from a distance), we feel like we should designate our giving to make sure it is spent in an area that we feel good about. Friends, giving unconditionally, or to undesignated funds, is the 10% tithe that’s directed in God’s Word. Secondly, we may want to give to a ‘Designated Fund’ such as missions, or any other fund, but that’s over and above your tithe. But why can’t I give my tithe so that ‘Suzi’ could put a roof on her house, you might ask? Why, is there a trust issue with your church’s financial team? Please don’t forget who that team answers to – the same God that you will answer to on Judgment Day. These types of designated giving, or to any other special need that God may place on your heart, these are freewill offerings that you are free to do at will. However, our Scripture today warns us about giving for personal gain, or personal recognition/praise/glory. As a child of God, the only glory that should really matter to us, is the reward mentioned in verse 4 today. No one on earth may ever know what you may have given to various needy people or projects, but to hear the Master tell us how He saw all that we gave, and how proud He was, and is of us, will be worth it all. So when we give my friend, let’s learn to give as unto the Lord. Sure, it may help an earthly need, but only God needs to know that it was us who gave as a result of all that He blessed us with.

PRAYER: For the awesome gifts that You have blessed us with oh Lord, we say thank You. Often we feel so undeserving Oh Lord, but to be able to share those gifts with others in need, is so rewarding. Please speak to my readers, and reemphasize in my life, the importance of helping the needy and giving a committed amount back to You, in return for the 100% earnings that You made possible for me/us. Please continue to bless in the same amazing ways that we can already attest to from past experience. You are our good, good God, to whom we owe our total selves and every blessing that You send our way. Lord, may we follow in Your example and bless others beyond all measure. 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. 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!

Use What You Have

Post Date:

Saturday, 2017-04-22
SCRIPTURE

From:

Mark 4:23-25 (ERV)

Text:

23 You people who hear me, listen! 24 Think carefully about what you are hearing. God will know how much to give you by how much you understand now. But he will give you more than you deserve. 25 The people who have some understanding will receive more. But those who do not have much will lose even the small amount they have.”
OBSERVATION:
Jesus was right in the middle of teaching, and I believe He probably started to see the blank stares that many teacher receive when they realize they may have lost their audience. Jesus was very careful to indicate the need for close attention and understanding, as they would be blessed as they share with others what they had learned from Him. In fact, He advised that they would by blessed in accordance with how much they share with others, from what they had learned. I wonder – are we receiving our share of blessings?
APPLICATION:
In a children’s class or even in a young adult class, the teacher might often do a recap at the end of class and ask questions about the lesson they just taught, to check for understanding, and also to prove how well the kids were listening. Isn’t it interesting that the ones who were most attentive, are the ones bubbling over with all of the answers? Ever wonder how many leave your class and while on break or in between classes they actually stop and share the exciting lesson they just learned in their last class? My daughter came to visit recently, and she was bubbling over with excitement about something she had just learned. Supposedly she had talked about the subject most of the day and couldn’t stop talking to her mom and I. I believe this is what Jesus is saying to us through these verses in our study. For if we listen to the right things, because Jesus taught that we are to listen carefully to the right things, and if we use that information to help others, or teach others, then we will be blessed with more and more, so that we could continually bless others for God. If we leave the lesson there, everyone would be happy, I believe. However, Jesus went on to say that if we ignore the good things that are being taught to us, and therefore don’t grasp the truth of the Word so that we could happily share that with a friend, neighbor, coworker or even family members, then even the small  amount of knowledge that some may have will be taken away. Friends, I believe we can recap this lesson by saying that blessings are in store for those who share what they have learned, however blessings are withdrawn from those who refuse to listen and/or share what they have learned. How’s your tank of blessings? Filled, or almost empty? You have now been reminded of the formula to refill your tank, go for it friend and willingly share what you learn so that the blessings keep flowing!
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, thank You for giving to us so that we might share with others! Please continue to show us how we might gain more, so that we might give more. Open our minds of understanding and our hearts with a deep desire to learn more. Help us to be empty vessels, because we have shared with others all that we have taken in. May You be blessed and glorified because of all that we give. 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!

Little Is Much When God Is In It

Friday, 2016-08-26

Scripture

Bible Reference: Mark 6:41–44

Bible Text: He took the five loaves and two fish, lifted his face to heaven in prayer, blessed, broke, and gave the bread to the disciples, and the disciples in turn gave it to the people. He did the same with the fish. They all ate their fill. The disciples gathered twelve baskets of leftovers. More than five thousand were at the supper.

Bible Translation: The Message (MSG)

My Take

There’s a song that echoed in my mind as I read this scripture ‘Little is Much, When God is In It‘. Friends, in today’s society we would be embarrassed to invite a family over after church for a meal, if all we had to place on the table was 5 loaves of bread and two small fish. Yet as you read the rest of the chapter on this story, you will note that the disciples could only see the impossibility of this small amount of food ever being enough to feed such a vast crowd. However, much like our talent, or our gifts, or our service, Jesus wants to take what little we have to offer and multiply, or magnify it for His glory. In fact, no matter how awesome we feel that our talents or our gifts are, they are useless in touching the heart of a man. So all we could possibly do is to offer up what we have to say, or teach, or preach, or give, and ask God to use it for His glory. We too will be amazed by what He could accomplish in the hearts of folk that need a touch from Jesus. I believe that we should never lose sight of the fact that when we boast of our talent before mankind, he merely sees a human very similar to himself that has something to share of equal or perhaps enhanced worth to what the receiver is capable of doing themselves. However, when Jesus is involved, we not only see the extravagant, the impossible, the awesome and the unexpected, but we recognize the face and/or the hand of God. We see a promise of an eternity in the presence of Jesus and the Father. We see the miraculous happening right before our very eyes – way beyond anything we are capable of. Friends, God will not bless what we are unwilling to surrender, or give to Him. It may only be two cents like in the story of the widow in the New Testament, or it may be everything we have like in the story being looked at today. Whatever it is, please know that it is insignificant compared to all that God can do with it when we are willing to surrender it to Him. Because of God, we have everything we claim to own today, let’s willingly give it back to Him in total surrender to Him, and may His kingdom become more effective to all those we know and love, as a result of our humility to God.

Prayer

Way too often we beat up on ourselves for not being smart enough, or not knowing enough scripture, or having no talent or finances. Essentially we are putting you down for not blessing us, and for that I beg Your forgiveness dear Lord. I am convinced from this scripture today that when we give in total obedience, without any strings attached or conditions placed upon our giving, and when we give so that You may be glorified instead of us, it is only then that we will see Your hand at work in and through us, and Your kingdom being fulfilled among us. Lord please help us to stay humble and to freely give of ourselves and all that we claim to have, all for Your glory. I ask these things in the awesome name of Jesus, my Lord and Savior, AMEN!

Footnote

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

Your God-Tools For 2016

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider even us, to nourish us for His glory! Read on and be blessed!………

The Bible Translation: The Message (MSG)
The Bible Reference: 2 Corinthians 10:3-6
The Bible Text: The world is unprincipled. It’s dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn’t fight fair. But we don’t live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren’t for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.

My Take Away: I was blessed to be a part of a group last night that watched the movie ‘War Room’. In that movie we were taught a similar principle as is taught in this passage of scripture today, that the Christian has at least one major God-tool at our disposal, and that we should take every opportunity to use it for the glory of God. As Paul indicated to the Corinthian church, there are tools of Satan in place all around us that we are powerless to face and challenged with on our own – that’s why they are so successful in this world with non-Christians. Often we can fight those things that are seen, and or obvious to us, but when we see our God-given marriages, children, extended families, neighbors, friends and churches failing, we quickly deduce that we are so helpless to do anything about those things. Friends, I was reminded that it’s not our marriages, children, extended families, neighbors, friends and churches that we are fighting, but instead it’s the Evil One that is trying very hard to kill, steal and/or destroy God’s chosen people – you and I. There is only one way to fight Satan, and that’s on our knees, crying out to God and pleading our case before our awesome, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-encompassing creator and Lord over everything – Jesus Christ. I believe that it is so important to remind ourselves daily who’s in charge, and that our God has the power to handle everything that we are willing to surrender to His control. I believe it is only then that our minds will be fresh. May we never forget to call on God when we sense an act of Satan that hinders our walk, our talk and our glorifying of the Lord Jesus Christ. Friends, these tools of Satan is nothing that the untrained should ever approach, these are God-sized, and can only be handled by Him. Let’s not waste time trying, or permitting the risk of us being sucked into, or wooed by Satan. Let’s surrender to God the things that we know should be handled by Him. No experimenting or trying to do it yourself. God’s got this, and we just need to humble ourselves and surrender our lives totally into His care. I believe that He loves us enough that He truly desires to be our Father!

Prayer: Father we are really quick to grab the right tools and physically take care of issues around our home, but then we fall apart when we have emotional or sin issues that impact our Christian walk, or our relationships. Thankfully You have provided tools for us to communicate with the Creator of this universe, and of mankind; the Great Physician; our Healer; the only Son of God; the Redeemer of mankind and the only One who can save us from our sin-riddled life, and bring us before the throne of grace, that we are so undeserving of. You loved us enough to die for us, Lord may we love You enough to totally surrender and dedicate our lives to You. May You find open, accessible lives that You can use for Your glory in all that You permit us to be a part of here on earth. This is my heart-cry today Father. May Your will be done in my life and in the lives of those who will meditate on this devotional today, is my prayer that I ask in the strong name of Jesus, AMEN!

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

2016

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