May The Christ In You Be Evident To Others Around You

I often feel like a good guide to how we are doing in our Christian walk might come from those we least expect. Perhaps a coworker or acquaintance who you never shared your testimony with, or even told that you are a Christian. Today we will look at the advice that Paul gave to the church at Philippi – the individuals who accepted Jesus as the Christ and Lord of their lives. Notice that he expected a better output from them, based on their input by the One who impacted their lives for the Kingdom. You might fit the same person that Paul was speaking to, so I believe the Holy Spirit might encourage you to take note of this reminder today!

DATE POSTED Saturday, 2022-11-26
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Philippians 2:1-4
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)

BIBLE TEXT: 1-4 If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.

APPLICATION: I attended an English high school, where I also boarded under English house parents. The principles and influence of my teachers and house parents have impacted my whole life – timeliness and eating very proper at the table are two of them!!! Having worked at a Canadian bank for over 15 years, I picked up a few things that have followed me right up until now – pretty cool ‘eh’?!!!! So, when your pastor preaches on the subject of being more like Jesus, he may be influenced by the teaching of the apostle Paul to the Philippian church. You see, Paul started this church after seeing many converted to Jesus as His followers. So, if Jesus was impacting their lives, then there should be clear evidence of principles that Jesus followed during His short life here on earth. Before looking closer at the things that were of particular interest to Paul, let me encourage you to first read the principles that were evident in the life of Jesus – found in verses 5-8. Simply click on the Scripture reference above and you will be presented with the full chapter. Paul therefore felt like just how Jesus was uniquely impacted by His Father, that the Philippian church, and Christians today should be impacted by our Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. Notice that the things brought out by Paul, are still things that ‘Christians’ struggle with today. Paul, back then, and Pastors today still struggle why, if Christians love Jesus and is blessed by Him, why are we not following in His footsteps and imitating His Character. Of course, they are assuming that each of us are constantly reminded of the life of Jesus, because we read our Bibles and learn of His character and His teachings. But look at the wish list by Paul:
*~* Agree with each other – You don’t need to prove that you are right all the time. Surely you remember how Jesus just kept silent when he was falsely accused before Pilate. There’s nothing wrong with a friend having their opinion, even if it’s different to yours.
*~* Love each other – Think about God loving you enough that despite your sin and ugly attitude, yet He sent His one and only Son to die a sacrificial life, so that you may live eternally with Him. No greater, unselfish and unconditional love than that.
*~* Be deep-spirited friends – of course they may not think like you, like the same things you like, or frequent the same places that you do, but they are your brother/sister with the same Father. Be good friends with those who need you in their lives.
*~* Others first – Paul said: ‘Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.
I thought it was really a blessing how Paul even told us how to accomplish these things: a). Through all that we have learned, gained and attained from following Christ; b). Through the lasting impression made on our lives by the love of Christ; c). Through being as one with our community – no reference to what ‘they’ are doing, but always what ‘we’ are doing as a community; and d). Through the love and caring attitude of our heart – God made us this way!
Notice that none of these things teach us to depend on what the other person thinks, does, says, or how they act towards us. This is a message to us personally. God will also deal with the other person, but when you stand before Him, it will all depend on what you did with what was given to you. Friends, the lost in our world need Jesus – our Savior and Lord. Oh, that they will especially see Him in our lives!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: As already evidenced by our Lord and Savior, let us also share compassion, unconditional love and the caring attitude of our Savior with all that we come into contact with. Let them look right through us and yet see ONLY JESUS!

PRAYER: Oh Lord, our lives were very much like the world we still experience every day while here on earth. We all need more of You and no longer be dulled or negatively impacted by the sin, strife and hatred of this world. Thank You for teaching through Your servant Paul so that we might again be reminded of the pitfalls we easily fall into when all we ingest each day is more of the world in which we live. Teach us Lord to always find the joy of our salvation and to aim at pleasing You every day because of what we learn from Your Word, and practice in our earthly travails. Your love, Your awesome gift of eternal life in glory with You and the Father are rewards that all Your saints long for. May the unsaved catch a glimpse of this and desire to know You personally. 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!

Your Customary Place

Some Bible translations say that Jesus went to his customary place – the synagogue. This Scripture made me think about the first place I look for when I enter a town – restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, thrift stores, etc. But what if I intend to be there over a weekend? How about you? If you told a friend to meet you at your customary place on Sunday morning at 11:00am, where will they go first?

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2022-11-09
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Luke 4:14-16
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 14 Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Holy Spirit, and soon people across the region had heard news of Him. 15 He would regularly go into their synagogues and teach. His teaching earned Him the respect and admiration of everyone who heard Him.
16 He eventually came to His hometown, Nazareth, and did there what He had done elsewhere in Galilee—entered the synagogue and stood up to read from the Hebrew Scriptures.

APPLICATION: I once heard a sermon entitled ‘Saints on vacation’. The pastor brought to light that although we may be in a different town, or even on vacation, there’s no excuse to not go to your customary place on the Lord’s Day. My wife and I went on a long, 3-month trip last year. We planned to stop for 2 nights before resuming our travel on the 3rd day, so that we would be well rested. However, each week we always stretched that 2-night stayover to include a Sunday so we could attend a local church service. We could have watched on television the service from our home church, but there is nothing like meeting in person with God’s people! Friends, this is in no way bragging, for we are nothing without Christ. However, those Sundays were some very special times as we joined hearts and hands with some fellow Brothers and Sisters that we expect to see around God’s throne someday soon. It actually feels weird when we are not in our ‘customary place’ on Sunday mornings. But I especially want to challenge Christians in this devotional. Some of you have become very comfortable staying at home during your ‘customary time’ of worship, since that is what you did for almost 3 years during the height of covid. Furthermore, you are still hearing others use the excuse that they don’t want to catch whatever other church members have, and that seems to work for them. Dear friends, my mom always asked if I would follow my friends if they wound up standing before Satan. In other words, I make decisions for myself based on what I know is right, and is Christlike. I make decisions based on the teachings and will of the God in whom I have found salvation. In our Scripture, you might recall that Jesus had just returned from the wilderness where he was tempted by the devil. He didn’t need time to recover from the disturbing temptations he experienced with Satan, nor did He look for pity from the church leaders who may have learned He was in town. I bet He couldn’t wait for the doors to open and the people to gather, so that He could join in with them and actually open the Word of God for their benefit. As Christians, we are called to be an example of our Lord. How careful are we to follow His example in being present when others are worshipping and learning from the Word? Let me encourage you to daily examine your words and your actions and place yourself before the Master for His evaluation on what He thinks. I believe we know where our ‘customary place’ should be. May God be our encouragement and provoker to help us be the follower of Christ He is looking for here on earth.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Jesus set the example for us to be in our ‘customary place’ when the time and opportunity presents itself! Oh, that Christ-followers would be faithful in following in Jesus’ example of church attendance!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for reminding me that I have no excuse about doing what You exampled before us. You had every reason to seclude Yourself and try to recover from the serious time you spent in the Wilderness, but You stayed on track in following the Father’s will. Please Lord, teach us to follow in Your footsteps and not let anything distract us from being Your follower in all walks of life. Although we would not expect an incentive, I pray that You will quietly use our example to help others be more closely aligned to You and Your perfect will for their life. Be glorified in us oh 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!

Test Your Christianity

Do you want to know if someone in your church is a ‘true’, or legitimate Christian? Just ask another member! But perhaps you should test yourself to see if you are really a Christian! Don’t shoot, for it was Paul who said that. He said that in response to the accusations he heard they were making about his stand for Christ. Remember before you embark on reading my full devotional, there’s a chance you might convince yourself of your Christianity, or as Paul indicated in the last words of our focal verse, ‘that you aren’t at all’!

DATE POSTED Saturday, 2022-08-20
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Corinthians 13:5
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: Check up on yourselves. Are you really Christians? Do you pass the test? Do you feel Christ’s presence and power more and more within you? Or are you just pretending to be Christians when actually you aren’t at all?

APPLICATION: Paul had a purpose in asking this question of the Corinthian church. Some evangelists might ask this to invoke a spirit of personal examination into our spiritual condition, to see if there is a need for revival of a life dulled by the things of this world. But Paul was actually being accused of not doing the work the people felt like God sent him there to do. This still goes on in churches today, for church leaders are quick to blame the pastor when things are less than booming in church growth, in financial giving, and in satisfying to desires of the congregation. Wouldn’t it be interesting for our Father to sharpen the minds of the people to first examine themselves? Wouldn’t it be challenging for the church leaders to first examine themselves and their lack of sharing the love of Christ with everyone they meet? We should realize that Paul wanted the people to examine themselves and prove that they were worthy of the Kingdom of God. If they were, then credit should be given to the one(s) that shared Christ with them (Paul)! And not to tear him down for not doing everything they expected of him. Friends, I hope that Paul’s congregation accepted his challenge as an opportunity for self-examination before a holy and righteous God. But seeing that God included this in His Book of Instruction (the Bible), then we must assume that He wanted us to also perform a self-examination before God, and here lies the challenge. Why, we’ve been getting away with pulling the wool over the eyes of our Pastor, our Sunday School Teacher and church leaders for years. For we attend church regularly and we have the lingo down pat. But should we be forced to reconcile any difference in opinion with God, that might really present a problem. Here are some things that might help us self-examine our own Christianity: a). Are we truly in the faith or are we simply attending church with hopes that everyone will assume we are? b). Do we honestly have an intimate, daily and active relationship with Jesus? c). Do we have a love for holiness, or does it tend to interfere with our social life? d). Do we abhor, or hate, sin, or does that seem too hypocritical to us? e). Do we practice righteousness by loving the brethren, or does it still depend on who they are? f). Can a new Christian follow in our example – our righteousness? g). Have we truly separated ourselves from the world and the things of this world? h). Do we look and sound so much like Jesus, that the world often mistakes us for the Master? I believe that through His servant Paul, God is teaching us to evaluate ourselves on a regular basis, especially before we attempt to point fingers at another beggar who is also looking for the Bread of Heaven. Our Christian walk is not meant to impress others, it is intended to help others who are seeking Christ to find Him at work in us. Oh that we would never be a stumbling blook to some poor sinner looking for the Master. ‘May they see Jesus’, should be our persistent prayer!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: One beggar helping another beggar find bread! That should be the aim of every believer through their actions and their speech. If Christ resides inside of us, He will shine through in everything we do or say!

PRAYER: Lord, I thank You that You lived and died for our sakes. You created us to live as an example of all that You taught through Your wonderful Word. Others expect that and look for that when they want to know who You are. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable to You Oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. Please Lord, draw us close to You, and encourage us to be Your church, Your followers and Your light in this dark world of sin. Let others see and experience You today as they encounter us in our normal walk of life. 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!

Blessed Are The Godly

From the title, you may guess that this is a new beatitude! It could be, but it was not included in the beatitudes that Jesus taught. However, it is very obvious from multiple scriptures that God is happy with those who seek after righteousness. His whole purpose for dying a sacrificial life was to facilitate salvation for His precious kids. To reflect righteousness, you must have accepted Jesus as Lord and the salvation He offers. Let’s meditate on the inspired words of the Psalmist today!

DATE POSTED Monday, 2022-07-18
WRITTEN AT: O Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Psalm 97:10-12
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: 10 You who love the Lord, hate evil! He protects the lives of his godly people and rescues them from the power of the wicked.
11 Light shines on the godly, and joy on those whose hearts are right.
12 May all who are godly rejoice in the Lord and praise his holy name!

APPLICATION: Some of you reading this devotional today may not have made any spiritual decisions yet in your life. The bible teaches that you are an unbeliever, because you have chosen to ignore the teachings of Jesus Christ. It is impossible for you to fit the description of the righteous mentioned in our Scripture, because you have chosen to say no to the invitation by God to know Him and to live according to His example and His teachings. You cannot be right-with-God, or righteous, without a personal relationship with Him. Let me encourage you to continue reading my blog each day, because my whole purpose is to teach you about the Lord I love and adore, with hopes that you will one day hear His call on your life. Now to apply the actual teaching for today, I believe that the Holy Spirit, through the Psalmist, is convincing those of us that have accepted the Lord Jesus, and are striving to live a life patterned after His character and teachings, a few things worthy of our attention:
1. Hate evil – Evil is just the opposite to everything else that we read in the Bible, for we know full well that Jesus is LOVE and He teaches repeatedly that we are to love others, just as He has loved us. But I believe that God is saying that we should not live a double life. In other words, don’t say that you love God and everything He stands for, yet sit idly by and accept the evil that impacts our lives by the unrighteous. Furthermore, don’t promote the evil of the unrighteous by supporting their products and their habits. For example, the righteous may never consider entering into a prostitution house, but they will sit in the privacy of their own home and purchase, or watch a movie that promotes that lifestyle. If we are to hate evil, I believe that refers to evil in any form, not just that which we might be embarrassed for our friends to see us entering into;
2. God is our Protector and Rescuer – I love those movies where the super cops swoop in and rescues the good people caught under protest by the evil thuds! This is kind ‘a what I think of in this teaching by the Psalmist. I can only imagine a loving Father looking in on a situation where one of His children are being taken advantage of, abused, mistreated, cheated, or harmed by an evil man/woman. I could easily see God becoming a lot more protective than the most loving dad would do if he saw someone about to mistreat his daughter;
3. Our reward for living righteously – Light shines on the godly and joy is awarded in their hearts! Do you suppose that ‘light’ might be the light of the SON? Darkness brings despair and disappointment. Light brings joy, peace and everlasting hope. Our everlasting hope is in knowing that because of our relationship with the Lord Jesus, we will one day be with Him and the Father in heaven for all of eternity! Glory be to God forever and forever!
4. Our expectation in return – Praise God from whom all blessings flow! Let’s stop burying ourselves in disappointment like those without hope. Instead, let’s learn to praise God above all the heavenly hosts, praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God rewards those who accept Him and are faithful in following His example and His teachings. Like our Father, God, let’s determine in ourselves to always hate evil.

PRAYER: Lord You are so good to us. From creation, to salvation, to eternal life with You and the Father in heaven, believers are blessed beyond our wildest imagination as to everything You have in store for us! Thank You loving Savior for watching over, protecting and keeping us until You return to take us home to glory. Please speak intently to the hearts of those who have shown no interest in knowing or accepting their Lord and Savior. May today be the day that they will hear Your voice and harken to Your call. Be glorified in everything accomplished by Your children today. May we always hate evil and promote our righteous Savior. 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!

Follow My Example

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Guilty Of Following Christ’s Example

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Shall They Follow The God Evident In Your Life?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

In Preparation For Your Mission

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

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

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

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

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

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

Principles Of Interpersonal Relationships

A common theme used when raising children is: ‘It takes a town’! This is no different in the church, for it takes all leaders and workers to help disciple and mature the saints, and minister to the unsaved. This becomes extra important when there is trouble brewing among the members. Paul wanted to prepare Timothy spiritually for the challenges he would face. As we meditate, let’s examine, and reassure ourselves of whose we are, and be sure that we are building relationships like God intended.

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-09-01
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Timothy 5:1-3
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: Never speak harshly to an older man,[a] but appeal to him respectfully as you would to your own father. Talk to younger men as you would to your own brothers. Treat older women as you would your mother, and treat younger women with all purity as you would your own sisters. Take care of[b] any widow who has no one else to care for her. 

OBSERVATION: A common theme used when raising children is: ‘It takes a town’! This is no different in the church, for it takes all leaders and workers to help disciple and mature the saints, and minister to the unsaved. This becomes extra important when there is trouble brewing among the members. Paul wanted to prepare Timothy spiritually for the challenges he would face. As we meditate, let’s examine, and reassure ourselves of whose we are, and be sure that we are building relationships like God intended.

APPLICATION: At a point in my working career, I became keenly aware that instead of getting upset at my younger staff for not doing things right, that it was vitally important that I do my part in coaching them along in life. For example: it was against bank rules for a staff member’s account to be overdrawn. Instead of getting upset at a younger member of my staff, I found it necessary to help them balance their checkbook to prevent overwriting their account balance. In all areas of life, we need to look at relationships in this way, for way too often others will not respond the way we were expecting, or complete a project in the way we wanted it done. Instead of becoming agitated or upset, it then becomes necessary to train them in the way you want to see the project completed. Paul knew that as Timothy began his ministry, he would encounter different people in different cultures that would prove to be quite challenging for him. Doing this correctly and as God intended, is best when it’s done right the first time. So Paul warned Timothy, and admonishes us today, to earn the respect of others and represent God well, with all people types. Her are some tips that Paul gives: Older Men – Don’t speak harshly or angrily to them, but treat them as you would your dad. With respect, and in a calm and mild-mannered way. As if you were looking to earn their respect. Yes, you may have one up on them educationally, or you may be in a higher paid job, but they will treat you respectfully for all your advantages, if you show respect to them. Younger Men – Think about your younger brothers. How would you treat them? Hope you can do a lot better than the many horror stories I hear about today where siblings have not seen each other in years, and they rarely talk via telephone. Older Women – Think about your mother – how would you treat her. My wife was told that she should look at the way her prospective husband treated his mom, for he will probably treat her the same way. Younger Women – Think purity, like you would tend to think about your younger sisters. Be respectful of young ladies, for they may become your daughter-in-law! Widows – Imagine that you lost your dad. How would you want young men to treat your mom? Some take advantage of them, don’t they? Know that all due respect is owed to ladies having to suffer the loss of their husband. No doubt they are helpless in many areas in which their husbands filled the leadership role. They need lots of hand-holding by people they could trust, in order to get through the new challenges they are presented with. So what does this all serve to do for the man who follows Paul’s instructions? I believe that you will find better church leaders, better work leaders for their employers, men who law enforcement never have to chase or worry about, and men who respect their community and its people. If this is not taught in our homes, supported by our teachers and reinforced by our church leaders, then we may understand why we have such a high crime rate and lack of respect for authority and our elderly today. May God grant us mercy to see this turned around in our lifetime, because adults like you and I chose to stand firm on the Word of God and insist that our younger generation do the same.

PRAYER: Oh Lord God, You see the mess that we have on our hands today. Please forgive us for waiting so long to teach our younger folk about Your principles and Your direction in relationships. I pray that as relationships are bonded, that You will be in the midst of them and that Your Word will be opened and obeyed so that solid relationship will develop by trustworthy individuals. This could all begin by each person committing to do their part in their circle of influence. Please speak intently to each reader as this blog is read and meditated on. May we all rededicate ourselves to the work of the good Lord, so that our relationships will be cemented in Your truths, and therefore bonds will develop where respect will shine across our land. Oh that You may once again be glorified in each land represented in my readership, so that lost folk will see and believe that You still rule and reign among Your people and their relationships. AMEN!

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

Transformed Relationships

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

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

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

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

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

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

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