How To Live in The Hope of Tomorrow

Post Date:

Monday, 2017-02-13
SCRIPTURE

From:

Romans 15:4 (Voice)

Text:

4 … everything written in the days of old was recorded to give us instructions for living. We find encouragement through the Scriptures and a call to perseverance that will produce hopeful living.
OBSERVATION:
God used Paul to not only share with the Romans, but also with us, the importance of looking to the Word of God for instruction on how to live godly and upright in a wicked and sinful world. Yes, Paul encountered life among his people to be very demanding, very stressful and very much designed around selfish desires and personal gain. I know, that sounds so much like today in so many ways. That’s why I believe God wants me to remind you of the hope that He has put in place for us around this very subject.
APPLICATION:
We might often become disheartened about the struggles we face, until we stop and consider the even deeper struggles that a friend or neighbor might face. I feel loved and encouraged to know that God knows all about our challenges of life, so much so, that He sent His messenger, Paul, to deliver a word of hope for us. In the hyperlink for our Scripture today, I included a few extra verses so that you could grasp the whole context, and understand how today’s verse fits in. It is so obvious that God was, and still is concerned about the ‘whole’ man. He is not just concerned about us living a happy life, although I’m sure that He could not be more pleased than to see His children that He created from dust, enjoying the blessings of all that He has provided for us. He knew in advance that there would be days that I might be down and out, but He ordained folk who are bound to have a super exciting day that would ‘rub shoulders’ with me and encourage, and lift me up. He also knew that we would need to be reassured of the hope that lies within us, a hope for the future that God has prepared for us to be in glory with He and the Father. So He had saints record their God-encounters that we might read and be encouraged. He called this accumulation of writings ‘The Bible’, and He has made that available to all who will read it and gain hope from it. In our verse today, we are reminded that His Word contains the following attributes that will especially help us through the tough times of life:

  1. Encouragement – Because God has prepared a place for those of us who have accepted His precious Son, we are encouraged to always have that hope to look forward to, whenever God calls us out of this world. Isn’t it encouraging that although we continually hear about how much worse this world is getting, yet for Christians, we have a big, glorious, happy, welcoming day coming when we shall see the face of Jesus and worship He and His Father, for ever and ever!! I am excited about that friend, and it gives me hope every time I am reminded of that day!
  2. Perseverance – Because of the hope referenced above, I can persevere the trials and temptations that I might face today, for I know they are only temporal, and the joy that awaits me, far exceeds anything that I might endure here on earth today, should I be afforded the liberty to remain here all day! Praise the wonderful name of Jesus, my Savior and Lord!
  3. Hope – The expectation of things yet to come. There are multiple cases of truth already proven in the Word of God, so I have every reason to be excited about the ‘Hope’ that lives within me and promised to me in the Word of God! My desire now is that I might share that ‘Hope’ with others today, so that they may know and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ!

So friend, if there is ‘Hope’ produced from reading the Word of God, may I encourage you to get your dose of it today so that as you approach the evil and discouragement this world tends to pour upon us, you will boldly declare ‘but greater is He (God) that is in us, than he (Satan) that is in the world’! With this hope friends, you can confidently face the world with all that it will challenge you with today and tomorrow.

PRAYER:
When we consider all that the world will throw at us every day, we can only praise God for His wonderful assurance of being with us each and every step. Lord how we need to be comforted with that assurance every day, and thank God, You have shown us exactly where and how to gain that ‘Hope’ and assurance. Your Word is a light unto our path; encouragement to our troubled souls; love to our loneliness of heart; strength to our often weak and troubled hearts; and everlasting hope that our future is drenched in everlasting joy as we worship at Your feet throughout eternity. Keep driving us towards the source of our encouragement and hope dear Lord. Help us to make it ours, so that we may spend our days glorifying You instead of worry about where the next piece of trouble will originate from! 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!

Encourage One Another With These Words

Wednesday, 2016-11-30

Scripture

Bible Reference: Isaiah 35:3-7

Bible Text:  With this news bring cheer to all discouraged ones. Encourage those who are afraid. Tell them, “Be strong, fear not, for your God is coming to destroy your enemies. He is coming to save you.” And when he comes, he will open the eyes of the blind and unstop the ears of the deaf. The lame man will leap up like a deer, and those who could not speak will shout and sing! Springs will burst forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert. The parched ground will become a pool, with springs of water in the thirsty land. Where desert jackals lived, there will be reeds and rushes!

Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

My Take

It seems like especially in the times that we live, people are so despondent that one might find it challenging as to what you might say or do to encourage them. I believe that Isaiah not only had insight from God as to what his people needed to hear at the time of his writing, because of all the unfair treatments they were receiving as a nation, BUT I also believe that God gave Isaiah foresight into the Savior that would be born and would handle unfair treatments and perform miracles such as restoring sight to the blind, and bringing hope to his people. I also believe that foresight extended to proclaim these words of encouragement for those still alive today. For it seems like there is more stress and discouragement in the lives of individuals today than ever before, whether it’s financial, health, family, work or friendship stresses. Our family and friends, or perhaps even my readers, may be facing very challenging times where there seems like little light at the end of the dark tunnel of circumstances they are now facing. Friends, I am encouraged by the words of Isaiah, and I want to share this with you so that you also might be encouraged. Our awesome God looks out for us today, through His Son Jesus, who came to save us from our sin, and He has a home already prepared for those who claim Him as Lord and Savior! May I be the first one to remind you today that there is a plan in place to not only protect us from the evil one here on this earth, but also a plan to unite us with our Savior on the other side! God tells us in His Word that there will be no crying there, no pain there, and I believe we can deduce that there will be no need for stress there, for our sole purpose will be to worship, praise and adore our wonderful Savior. I believe something that might help us comprehend what that may be like is, and may I encourage you to slow down your reading so that you can truly meditate on this thought, but: imagine that you are in the best worship service that you have ever experienced. For the sweet presence of the Holy Spirt is evident. There is no time to worry about work, family or any other issues, for your heart, soul and mind is fixed on worshiping the Savior of this world, who is obviously in your midst with an unbelievable presence. It’s a time that you don’t want to stop, because all of your external concerns and issues have faded away and you only have focus and time for Jesus – absolutely nothing else. Now imagine that precious time never ending – that’s a glimpse of what I believe it might be like in heaven. Is this something you might be willing to work towards even now? Believe it or not, that time could come much sooner than expected for some reading this devotional today. I pray that you have your heavenly affairs in order, because the alternative to what I described above is Hell itself with Satan as its leader. God has provided the means by which you might be assured today of what your destination might look like after you leave this world. Please read my Footnote and contact me if there are any unanswered questions.

Prayer

Father, thank You for creating such a wonderful world for Your children to live in! As with all sin, we have not only abused the beauty of everything that You have blessed us with, but we have burdened ourselves with a lot of worry about things that we really can’t change. Reading Your Word today has brought renewed hope and joy, as I am reminded that these things that my friends and I face today are only temporary, as You have a much brighter and happier future already prepared for those who have shown their interest in wanting to be with You eternally. Lord, may we learn to redirect our thoughts to the hope that lies ahead, instead of the circumstances we are burdened with today. May our eyes and our hearts be fixed on You, oh Lord, our hope for all eternity. Please help us to encourage one another, much like Isaiah did, on the fact that You are alive forevermore, and that You not only stand waiting to help us in our daily lives, but also awaiting our exit from this world, to welcome us home! With much love and adoration, we sincerely than You dear Father for that enormous love for us! 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!

Great Is His Faithfulness

Thursday, 2016-10-27

Scripture

Bible Reference: Lamentations 3:21-25

Bible Text:  21 But then I think about this, and I have hope: 22 We are still alive because the Lord’s faithful love never ends. 23 Every morning he shows it in new ways! You are so very true and loyal! 24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my God, and I trust him.” 25 The Lord is good to those who wait for him. He is good to those who look for him.

Bible Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

My Take

Perhaps yesterday was a very tough day for you, and your greatest fear for today is that things will only get worse. I believe that this snippet from God’s Word is intended to bring us HOPE friend, for in spite of the evil minds of those who tend to persecute us and hold us down, yet we are reminded that our God is forever faithful to His children – that’s us! In fact, how awesome is it to be reminded that the faithfulness of our God is refreshed, or anew every morning! Doesn’t this renew new strength and hope in us to: worship our God; sing praises to our awesome God; seek His forgiveness for us forgetting His love and power yesterday; and to face today with reassurance that we serve the very God who designed us and this universe where we live! It is that powerful God that cares for and loves us beyond all measure, and will care for us today, friend! There was a bus-line that had a slogan “leave the driving up to us”. I believe our reminder, and reassurance today, is that God wants us to cast our cares and concerns upon Him, leave them at His feet, and depend on Him to hold our hand and guide us lovingly through today with His total protection and extreme love that He wants to extend to those who will trust Him today. This brings me hope today friend, I trust that it will do the same for you!

Prayer

Oh what a Savior! Lord, I thank You for Your faithfulness, for it is not dependent on our perfection, or our efforts, or our capabilities. In fact, I would dare say that it appears like Your love is unconditional and so very evident especially when we are weak and tend to fail in our walk and talk as Your children. Oh that we may learn to love and care for others like that! Thank You Lord for the hope we have each day in knowing that You are our Rock, our Salvation, our Hope, our Protector, our Guide and our everlasting Savior! We need You today Lord, for we are facing a day with many unknowns. Please hold our hand – guide, protect and encourage us to face the day with confidence knowing that the almighty God is our Deliverer, and that You love us enough that all things will work together for our good. We are desperate children, in need of an awesome God! Please help us to trust You and place our total faith and trust in You, for I ask these things in the matchless name of Jesus, God’s Son, 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!

Attributes of Your Faith

Wednesday, 2016-10-26

Scripture

Bible Reference: Romans 15:13

Bible Text:  I pray that God, who gives hope, will bless you with complete happiness and peace because of your faith. And may the power of the Holy Spirit fill you with hope.

Bible Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take

I believe that Paul has outlined some attributes of our faith that should be evident, if we are truly committed to the Lord Jesus Christ and depending on the Holy Spirit every day, even while living on this earth among the multitude of sins evident everywhere we turn, and the impact/havoc that sin can have on us. Here is advice, that I feel, we can search our hearts for and to seek God’s favor for:

  • The origin of ‘HOPE’ – Friends, I believe that God wanted Paul’s hearers and us to know that our hope is not dependent on our family, our church or our country, but comes from God alone. Whenever we begin to feel despondent over life’s circumstances, or the crime rate, or the multitude of lost ones all around us, and we worry about the constant bombardment of evil, there is only One that we can turn to for hope. We may be worried sick over the leader our people may elect to lead us, but we are reminded that God holds the future in His hands, so who are we to try and correct world events. He has a plan designed for the duration of our time friends, and gives us peace of mind about all that is in store for us. Because of the hope that we have in Jesus Christ, we can rest assured that we will be taken care of and that our destiny, after this wicked sinful world, is far greater than anything we could possibly experience here on earth.
  • Faith – We can read about it, and we have probably witnessed the hope in our forefathers and church leaders, but we will never experience complete happiness and peace personally, until we have the faith, based on our trust in Jesus Christ, to totally depend on God for all aspects of life. This kind of faith is the kind spoken of in Proverbs 30:7-9 where Solomon pleaded with God to give him enough provisions to see him through each day, and detailed his concerns about too little or too much. I believe that God is teaching us to sincerely seek that kind of deep faith, knowing that without it, we would never see true happiness nor peace. Christian friend, at what level do you suppose your happiness meter would register today if God helped you evaluate your faith and dependence on Him? 
  • The reassurance of the Holy Spirit – Friends, I believe that God is teaching us here that as we draw closer to Him, His Holy Spirit will fill us with much hope and happiness by reassuring us of the One who holds our future, who watches out for us day after day, and who still loves us so much that He will see us safely on through eternity to one day be with He and His Father – God himself!

I don’t know about you friend, but these things from this very short verse has reminded me of the awesome God that I serve and that I can depend on today and every day to hold my hand, and lead me through every circumstance that may come my way. How is it with you today? Is your Hope and Faith seated firmly in the Lord Jesus Christ? Is the Holy Spirit active in your life, filling you with everlasting happiness and peace, until the Lord Jesus comes again to take you home to heaven? If not, why not? Seek God and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you child of God!

Prayer

Lord Jesus, we are so caught up in every aspect of life and endure so much stress over what we think we could do to fix the wrongs that affect us in various ways. Yet we come across passages like this from Your Word that redirects us to consider our relationship with You. We are assured once again that You are in control, and You have the keys to our happiness here on earth, and the hope of our eternity in heaven with You. Thank You for reminding us that our responsibility is to trust in You, and not mess things up worse than they are already by trying to fix them ourselves. Our very happiness depends on You Lord! Please renew our faith, our hope and our total dependence on Your sweet Holy Spirit that You have given to us as our comforter and everlasting source of joy and hope. ‘I’m Yours Lord, everything I am, everything I’ve got, everything I’m not‘ please fill me and my readers with so much of You that others will see Jesus and believe on Him. 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!

Standing In The Presence of The Almighty God

Saturday, 2016-09-24

Scripture

Bible Reference: Colossians 1:21-23

Bible Text:   21 You used to be far from God. Your thoughts made you his enemies, and you did evil things. 22 But his Son became a human and died. So God made peace with you, and now he lets you stand in his presence as people who are holy and faultless and innocent. 23 But you must stay deeply rooted and firm in your faith. You must not give up the hope you received when you heard the good news.

Bible Translation: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take

I believe that any person that you walk up to and ask how they would feel about standing before the throne of God today, may respond in varying ways about where they think they are with God. However, in this scripture today you will see that God clarifies this for those who may be uncertain, or who refuse to face the reality of the gospel. Here’s what I see from the Word of God in these verses in Colossians:

Before Christ: This pertains to those who have not accepted Jesus as their personal Savior. The Word says that you are ‘far from God’, or enemies of God – and because of your evil thoughts and actions, you do evil things, or ungodly things, or things that displease God;

In Christ: This includes those who have accepted the sacrificed lamb (Jesus), who was sacrificed at Calvary for the sins of the world. Those who accept Jesus in appreciation for His sacrifice, are welcomed by the Father (God) and looked upon as ‘holy’, ‘faultless’ and ‘innocent’. Friends, I don’t know about you, but because we are incapable of that kind of sacrificial and unconditional love, that is challenging for us to wrap our minds around. But the Word speaks Truth and I truly believe that God loves us enough that He would do exactly what He says in His Word! So because of our obedience, I believe that we are found righteous before God. However, there is one more piece of advise to us –

After being united with Christ: As normal human beings, we often tend to wander back into our old habits. Often we will make decisions because of our current circumstances, then soften our stand as life returns to normal for us. We are warned by the Word, that we are to stay grounded, or deeply rooted in our faith. We can do this through habitually reading the Word of God so that we may be reminded of God’s goodness, love and concern for us. It is also important for us to attend a local Bible believing church where we might encourage others, and allow them to encourage us, plus receive further learning from God’s Word, or a better understanding of what it means. But in all that we do, let us remember the hope that is ours in knowing the Lord Jesus Christ! May others see and believe in Jesus because of the hope they see in us!

Prayer

Lord Jesus, thank You for the awesome sacrifice You made for our benefit. Some who read this devotional today will be in various steps of the above decision making, please speak to the hearts of those who read this. Especially speak strongly to those who artificially place themselves in the wrong category of relationship with You, for I know that only the plain open truth and honesty of our life’s decisions will matter. May our hearts be touched to draw closer to You and intentional in knowing You personally and wholeheartedly. I ask these things because of the truth of Your Word, 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!

Hope Even In Your Storm

Tuesday, 2016-07-26

Scripture

Bible Reference: Matthew 14:28-31

Bible Text:  28 Then Peter called to him: “Sir, if it is really you, tell me to come over to you, walking on the water.” 29 “All right,” the Lord said, “come along!” So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. 30 But when he looked around at the high waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted. 31 Instantly Jesus reached out his hand and rescued him. “O man of little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?”

Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

My Take

Many of us face situations that seem virtually impossible to us. Our challenges appear so far out of reach that we often worry if we could ever overcome them and go on to live a ‘normal’ life. Let’s look at some attributes of Peter in the story told through the few verses chosen today, for he also faced some challenges that seemed way beyond human ability. Have a look at how Peter’s situation was handled and apply them to your ‘storm’ today:

  • Have courage – Peter knew that he served an awesome God, so stepping out of the boat onto water, which he had been around long enough to know that it was not of the consistency to walk on, yet because he knew Jesus, and because Jesus said ‘come to me’ then he was confident that Jesus would provide the means. May I encourage you to trust the Master more than what may appear obvious from your circumstances? Have courage to step out in faith and do what Jesus commands of you;
  • Have faith – To have have faith in God is to be ready to follow what He commands you to do, not what seems logical or practical to you. You may have messed up already and therefore in the position you are. Ask God what He would have you to do, then place your faith totally in Him and do as He commands. Because of his faith, Peter walked on water! What will you be willing to do? 
  • Stay focused – The distractions of this world often gets us in the bad positions where we feel hopeless, so it is important that we keep our eyes on Jesus and not let the world mislead and distract us back into a state of hopelessness. When Peter took his eyes off Jesus, he began to sink – falling back into his human, hopeless state. Only in Christ will we find our answers friend.
  • Doubt – When we take our eyes off the prize – the encouragement and confidence of  having our hand supported by the Creator of our universe, we submit to the mere power of self, and return to doubting if there truly is a better way. There’s no need to doubt friend, we serve a God who placed this world into existence, raised the dead back to life, caused the blind to see again and made the lame to walk again, to name just a few of His miracles. This is the same God that we serve and depend on, and there is no need to doubt His love or His abilities.
  • Praise God – There’s a really neat song entitled ‘Praise You in the Storm‘. Let’s pray that our hope in Christ will be so strong that we could praise God in the good times, and in our storms. If we have faith in Him, and we know His awesome abilities, then we can do this friend! Our situation may seem impossible and hopeless, but our God is not. Let us therefore keep our eyes fixed on Him, the author and finisher of our faith!

In this life there will be storms, but be reassured friend – there will always be our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who has demonstrated His love for us on the cross, and will continue to demonstrate that love everyday as He watches over us! Trust Him, won’t you?

Prayer

Lord God, You are our strength; our stable, proven force; our fortress and our deliverer in whom we can place our faith and our trust. We are Yours Jesus, and yet we doubt. Please forgive us, and renew a right spirit within us oh Lord. Our situations are varied, and some seem very impossible to us. As we come to You, our Rock, may fear and doubt be overcome with faith and confidence. Please touch Your children once again today dear Lord. I ask these things in Your holy and precious name, 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!

Everyone Has A Chance

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider feeding even us with His Word! May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for a blessing, friend!………

Today’s Bible Reference: Joel 2:31–32
Today’s Bible Text: 31 The sun will become dark, and the moon will turn blood red before that great and terrible day of the LORD arrives. 32 But everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved, …..
The Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take Away: I believe there are situations that occur here in this world where we get so caught up with the media in evaluating every little aspect of it, that we may often miss the heart of God and the ability to dig deep into the desires of our heart to touch the world for Jesus Christ. I know, emotions can easily take over, but with a heart like that of our God, will we truly be looking for a place to lay the blame or think about the mind of the person who caused the event? Friends, I would suggest that when you click on the scripture passage above, that you would expand it to read the whole chapter. It’s just a total of 32 verses to read! Very little is known about Joel, but he was obviously very concerned about a disaster that impacted the lives of his family, his town and even his region, as a plague of locusts had destroyed everything. Especially back then, a total destruction of crops, which also led to a shortage of food for livestock, soon led to a time of panic by residents. However, notice that Joel looked beyond the normal eye of the news reporter, and instead considered what God might benefit from this whole event. Can’t you imagine that before this disaster, there may have been evangelistic meetings reaching out to the same people that were now impacted with this disaster? However, instead of Joel using the disaster to ridicule, or place blame, or accuse the sin nature of the people, he continued a consistent, loving, caring message to his people, that regardless of the happenings evident around them, please know that God’s salvation plan is still available to those who call upon Him. Regardless of the number who may direct blame towards God in the type of disaster Joel found himself in, or even in the disasters we face, our message should be the same: Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord WILL BE SAVED! Please don’t get sucked into the ploy of the media to find the worst in everything. We have GREAT NEWS that will only be exposed, if God’s people, who are called by His name, will humble themselves and pray, and be willing to continue spreading the gospel – even in the midst of what might appear to be disastrous situations.

Prayer: Father, it’s not our place to question, but to obey and continue spreading the joy of our salvation and the the hope for tomorrow given to the believer in Jesus Christ. May our minds be so fixed on You that, although we may fret in times of disaster, our hope in the God of our salvation will excel to a point that we will see the hearts of those who need You as Savior and Lord. There are many who need hope at this time as they mourn the loss of loved ones, or as they sit by hospital beds with loved ones struggling to survive. Please comfort each one, and please dear Lord, draw them to Yourself. May they find hope in calling on your name. Please calm the hearts of those caught up in the media hype, and refocus their energy into drawing closer to You. I ask these things in faith, and because of Your love for all mankind – Your creation, and the ones You particularly died for. 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

The Gospel Message

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider feeding even us with His Word! May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for a blessing, friend!………

Today’s Bible Reference: Acts 2:38-41
Today’s Bible Text: 38 Peter said to them, “Change your hearts and lives and be baptized, each one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ. Then God will forgive your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 This promise is for you. It is also for your children and for the people who are far away. It is for everyone the Lord our God calls to himself.” 40 Peter warned them with many other words; he begged them, “Save yourselves from the evil of the people who live now!” 41 Then those who accepted what Peter said were baptized. On that day about 3000 people were added to the group of believers.
The Bible Translation: Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)

My Take Away: These verses form the whole jest of the gospel, or the purpose for churches today. The gospel is preached, or shared with individuals, and through the power of the Holy Spirit, their hearts are stirred, and they accept Jesus as their Lord. I know that this sounds extremely simple friend, but in and of our sinful selves, we want nothing to do with Jesus, or anyone else that will challenge us or the way we live. Conversely then, whenever we hear the Word of God taught or preached, and it prompts us to question or to want to change our way of life, it is at that point that we need to listen to Peter’s response in verse 38, for it is God speaking to us. I believe that the church today is just as relevant as it was in Peter’s day. I believe that people need the Lord today as much, or more than, anyone ever needed the Lord before. I believe it is more critical than ever before that Christians, and church leaders, be sincere and persistent about preaching the Word of God in its simplest form, so that the world will know without a doubt who Jesus is. I can assure you friend, that Jesus really loves you, and so do I! I’ll be praying for all who might read this devotional today that God would be active in your decision making, for only He can change the heart of a sinner. Praise God He did it for me, so I know for sure!

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for making a way for us to one day see You and spend eternity with You in heaven! Thank You for those, like Peter, and our current-day pastors who diligently deliver the message of Truth from Your Word. I pray that more of us, as recipients of that message, will share our faith with others, for the same gospel message that impacted our lives can be enjoyed by many others that we come into contact with, if we will be bold enough to share. Bless us this day with Your grace the boldness and power to share that which we have been blessed with. Please touch our pastors this weekend with power from on high, so that the world might hear and believe. In deepest appreciation for Your love and Your message of hope, I ask these things today, 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

Where Is Your Hope For Tomorrow?

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Are you hoping for riches, or for your boat of good luck and good fortune to magically come in? There is only One in whom we can place our faith and our trust for all things heavenly! May I encourage you to read this devotional in light of what you know for sure about your tomorrow?

Today’s Bible Reference: Psalm 146:3-5
Today’s Bible Text: Don’t put your confidence in powerful people;
there is no help for you there. When they breathe their last, they return to the earth, and all their plans die with them. But joyful are those who have the God of Israel as their helper, whose hope is in the Lord their God.
The Bible Translation: The New Living Translation

My Take Away: Friends, I don’t know about you, but I have had a very challenging week in the eyes of man. In reading this scripture today, I believe that God has humbled me to think on my blessings instead of my challenges, and be reminded of where my strength comes from and where my hope lies. Let me share with you how God has proven Himself faithful this week without even sharing what my challenges were, because I want you to join me in always depending on God in every circumstance of life, and to always look for His hand of mercy in all that happens to us. I’m sure that you can also stop and fill a page with ways that God has blessed you and been present with you this week, and I encourage you to do that, but here are are some personal blessings my family and I received this week in spite of our challenges:

  • We are all safe, in spite of something that could have taken at least one of us away;
  • We had opportunities to reflect a witness of our faith. Without saying anything about our faith, we suddenly had a medical technician talk with us about the Lord, as if we had been co-laborers in the faith all of our lives. He obviously felt led of the Holy Spirit that we were followers of Christ. No Bible under our arms nor any sermons from our lips, but apparently our actions spoke louder than our words could ever have done. What a calming peace came over us;
  • We had a call very early after our incident offering food for our afternoon meal. Children of our King lovingly came to comforts help us by providing meals for us each day. Friends, this is evidence from our Master how He takes care of us, and this is evidence of our Lord working in and through His precious children. Read the verses above again and consider where else we could possibly have been blessed like this, apart from the love and grace of our precious Savior!
  • God sent Angels to encourage us – phone calls, emails, texts, Whatsapp, etc. Messengers being obedient to the voice and will of God.

Friends, We saw the church in action. We witnessed the hands and feet of Jesus in very visible and practical ways. We have truly placed our faith and hope in the Lord God Almighty, and I pray that you have also. Perhaps you have had a fairly smooth week, and I thank God with you for that, but a week ago I had no idea what this week would hold for us. Please let me encourage you to draw close to God. Place your hope in the Lord Jesus Christ for He cares for you. He has promised that He would never leave you alone. That’s a lot more than you can say about anyone else you know here on this earth friend! Furthermore, He has prepared a wonderful eternal home for us when we retire from this earth, and it’s in the presence of royalty, for our God is King over all kings that ever lived or reigned! What a mighty God we serve!

Prayer: Father, I pray that each of my friends reading this devotional today will be reminded of the everlasting, most loving God that we serve. I pray that there will be some that will take time to read this, that don’t know You as their Lord and Savior yet, and that the Holy Spirit will imprint the words from the Psalmist upon their minds and give them a glimpse of the hope that could be theirs, if only they would trust You as Lord of their life. This next week could end very differently for me, and it could also do the same for a reader. Father, I pray many will pray to You today for understanding, and Your mercy will draw them into the fold of Your loving care and protection. No matter what our earthly circumstances might be, I pray that our heavenly arrangements are in order, and that our Hope is fixed in You dear Lord. Touch lives today as only You can, for I ask this in the precious and loving name of my Master and Lord, 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 http://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

Be Ready to Say Why….

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Today you will be encourage to openly share where your hope comes from. Can you do it? Read today’s devotional and seek to obey God’s Word. He will reward you for speaking up about the hope that lies within you! Recognize your blessing today and be ready to share it with someone else, friend!

Today’s Bible Reference: 1 Peter 3:15–16
Today’s Bible Text: Honor Christ and let him be the Lord of your life. Always be ready to give an answer when someone asks you about your hope. Give a kind and respectful answer and keep your conscience clear. This way you will make people ashamed for saying bad things about your good conduct as a follower of Christ.
The Bible Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take Away: The very first sentence in our scripture today is a given, but a great reminder – that we must honor our Lord Jesus, by the way we live. It should be evident whether we are living free of any restrictions, without any type of guardrails at all, or whether we have a purpose in life and that our direction for getting to our goal consists of a very narrow road with lots of guardrails to help prevent us from running into issues. We are reminded that when we live this way, others might question us about the hope and determination that we have, and where could our strength possibly be coming from to live so differently in a world that is filled with evil, crime, hatred, envy and strife. It is at this point that we should feel honored to share exactly who is incenting our actions, why did we choose to take the route we are taking, and what we know that we can expect at the end of our journey here on earth. Most of all, although we know that we will have trouble containing the excitement, we must learn to share our response with deepest respect for the one asking and in the same love that Christ first spoke to, and encourage us to redirect our lives. Friends, throughout God’s Word we are reminded that God rewards those who obey and live by His commands, but He envies those who don’t and will bring eternal damnation on them. Will you make Him proud today because you had the audacity to speak up about the hope that lies within you? Pray that I will, as I continue to lift my readers up in prayer, especially with these encouraging instructions today!

Prayer: Dear Father in Heaven, hallowed be Your name in all the earth, as I sing Your praises for all that You do in my life each day. Praise God that my readers and I enjoy this same blessing, because we serve the same God! As the world recognizes that very special gleam in our eye, or reactions in our demeanor, may we be quick to share with them the source of our joy, our strength and our everlasting hope. May it not be the norm today where friends get together to tear someone apart, but may we instead share the hope of eternity, and the source of our joy and hope about living a joyful life today because of the hope of tomorrow, all because of Jesus our Lord! I celebrate You, Master and Lord! May I do that in humble adoration with deepest respect for all that we come into contact with, for I ask this in the name of Jesus, my Lord, 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