Live Worthy of the People God Has Chosen

If I was asked to live like an ‘Algreen’, I would probably evaluate often if I am living out the lessons and character traits taught To me by my parents, and I would hope that others might see enough of those characteristics in me that they may even recognize me as an Algreen! I wonder, is that the way it is in our Christian walk? That’s something for us to think about as we meditate on these verses, and on the advice that Paul gave to the Ephesian church.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-07-17
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Ephesians 4:1-6
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: As a prisoner of the Lord, I beg you to live in a way that is worthy of the people God has chosen to be his own. Always be humble and gentle. Patiently put up with each other and love each otherTry your best to let God’s Spirit keep your hearts united. Do this by living at peace. All of you are part of the same body. There is only one Spirit of God, just as you were given one hope when you were chosen to be God’s people. We have only one Lord, one faith, and one baptism. There is one God who is the Father of all people. Not only is God above all others, but he works by using all of us, and he lives in all of us.

OBSERVATION: If I was asked to live like an ‘Algreen’, I would probably evaluate often if I am living out the lessons and character traits taught To me by my parents, and I would hope that others might see enough of those characteristics in me that they may even recognize me as an Algreen! I wonder, is that the way it is in our Christian walk? That’s something for us to think about as we meditate on these verses, and on the advice that Paul gave to the Ephesian church.

APPLICATION: In raising kids, it seems like it would take daily repeating ourselves to embed the character traits and advice that we wanted implanted in our kids, so that they could not only grow up to be like us, but to be respected in the community, and among their friends. Of course, this could only be achieved or worthwhile if we ourselves are perfect. But ‘perfect’ in your eyes, might be different to ‘perfect’ in my opinion. That’s why we need a plum line – something/someone that is truly perfect, and I believe that might be the explanation on why Paul chose to tell the church how God would have them, and us, live, especially among other people. So let’s examine the characteristics that Paul gave to us:
~ Be Humble and Gentle – I believe that a humble person is one who respects and appreciates the strengths of another person, and could love them in spite of the overwhelming strengths recognized in them. To be gentle, is having the ability to deal with others without giving them the impression that you’re a ‘know-it-all’ and that you are superior to them. No one appreciates an overpowering, know-it-all type of person, and we try to stay our distance from them, to avoid getting upset or mad at them. Being Humble and Gentle means that you will be deliberate about seeing the strengths of another person, while laying aside your own;
~ Patiently put up with each other and love them – so often we see so much wrong with others, that we tend to overlook what our own weaknesses and wrongs are. Some Bible translations say that we are to be tolerant with others. Friends, I believe that Paul was really trying to say that when one imperfect individual tries to meet and evaluate another imperfect individual, we will find flaws. But think about this: if each person has one thing in common, the Lord Jesus – the only perfect One, then how dare us credit ourselves with anything else than ‘servant of the Most High God’? So as we meet others, yes even with their flaws, let’s remember that we too have more than our share of flaws. So you will have to be overlooked for your weaknesses, just as much as I would have to be for mine! Let’s remember that everyone is equal at the foot of the cross – sinners saved by God’s grace, alone;
~ Let God’s Spirit keep us united – Paul gives us the source of our strength to accomplish this characteristic – the Holy Spirit, and Paul tells us how to accomplish this – through peace. Know that although we may often go to meet with someone and be ready for battle, God wants us to be ready for, and determined to be ready for, peace?
Friends, our Scripture reminds us that God called us to be His own. This means that He wanted us to be His very own. We are also reminded that Jesus practiced unity, love, forgiveness, humility and peace in every aspect of His life while here on earth. So we should never question if it’s possible for us to do so, Jesus already proved to us that it is! Most importantly, I believe that God shared these words with us through His servant Paul, because He wanted the world to see that with the power of God inside of us, we can do even those things that seem impossible to mere man. For with God, all things are possible!

PRAYER: Dear God, Your Word is so precious, for it shows us the error of our ways, the weaknesses of our minds and the unfortunate power that we allow the evil one to have in our lives. Praise God, Your Word also shows us that with the power of the Holy Spirit inside of us, we could be more than conquerors, and therefore depend on You to help us live our lives like children who have been called by the God of this universe, to walk, talk, and love those that might be just like us, or even worse. We obviously need You today and everyday to help us live just like You and in every respect like You taught us in Your Word. May You rule in the lives of my readers and myself today and everyday, for Your glory, honor and praise. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

Who Am I Lord?

Can you imagine? Can you even think, why a perfect and holy God, the Creator of the universe, would take a moment to look at us, be concerned about us and the things that concern us? Why? Does that not blow your mind why a King would live and die for a sinner such as you or I? David had a very intimate relationship with God, yet he was overwhelmed with all that God chose to do for him and through him. Think about the ways that God has blessed you?

Friday, 2020-02-07

Bible Reference: 1 Chronicles 17:16-19
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: 16 Then King David went ins and sat before the Lord and prayed, “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? 17 And now, O God, in addition to everything else, you speak of giving your servant a lasting dynasty! You speak as though I were someone very great,[b] O Lord God! 18 “What more can I say to you about the way you have honored me? You know what your servant is really like. 19 For the sake of your servant, O Lord, and according to your will, you have done all these great things and have made them known.

OBSERVATION: Can you imagine? Can you even think, why a perfect and holy God, the Creator of the universe, would take a moment to look at us, be concerned about us and the things that concern us? Why? Does that not blow your mind why a King would live and die for a sinner such as you or I? David had a very intimate relationship with God, yet he was overwhelmed with all that God chose to do for him and through him. Think about the ways that God has blessed you?

APPLICATION: I wonder how often we stop asking, begging or pleading with God long enough to just soak in the awesome work He has already completed in our lives? Do we ever stop long enough to give God credit for the wondrous ways that He has blessed others through us? David wanted to excel by building a temple for the Ark of the Covenant to be placed in, for he was feeling guilty that he had a palace, yet there was not a single place that could be considered ‘God’s home’. Notice how God put David in his place and ordered him to stand down, as this was not something that he would construct, but one of his descendants would have that pleasure. Now, with that added information, David is going before his Maker, not to show how upset he is over God not accepting his offer to give, but to thank God for all He has done for him, and continuing to do through his children. Friends, I would love to be able to give, and if I could do it through a friend or relative, I would be thrilled. My desire is to see the work of the Lord flourish, so I pray that God will be lifted up and magnified for all that is received for His work. Remember, God blesses us with our jobs and with a good income. What we give back to Him is just a token of all that He blesses us with. Let’s also remember that we receive many gifts that are not necessarily monetary in nature. Considering all those who work diligently for the kingdom, who am I that God should bless me? Like David said in the preceding verses, there is no one like my God. Let’s thank Him and praise Him for who He is, and for the love and honor He has bestowed upon each of us that call Him – LORD!

PRAYER: Thank You Heavenly Father for accepting me, just as I am. Like David, I acknowledge that I barely understand how You could love me knowing exactly how I act, and how I fail in so many ways. You alone are God, and You love me in-spite of my shortcomings and inadequacies. In fact, I could only imagine that it’s because of who You are and because You are alive in me. Thank You Heavenly Father for loving even me, and blessing my readers and I beyond anything we deserve based on our own merit. May You be honored, praised and glorified because of Your Holy Spirit being alive and well in us. Thank You dear Jesus. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to attend my home church. 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!

Washing Ourselves Daily of The Effects of This World

Although foot washing is not widely practiced in today’s churches, every time I read this story I see humility symbolized in a very real way. However, Jesus not only teaches humility, but also the need for cleansing, especially as we are impacted daily by the filthy effects of Satan on his followers. Because we rub shoulders with these folk on a regular basis, we should consider how critical it is to plead with the Master daily for cleansing.

Saturday, 2019-11-16

Bible Reference: John 13:6-8
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text:
Simon Peter (as Jesus approaches): Lord, are You going to wash my feet?
Jesus: Peter, you don’t realize what I am doing, but you will understand later.
Peter: You will not wash my feet, now or ever!
Jesus: If I don’t wash you, you will have nothing to do with Me.

OBSERVATION: Although foot washing is not widely practiced in today’s churches, every time I read this story I see humility symbolized in a very real way. However, Jesus not only teaches humility, but also the need for cleansing, especially as we are impacted daily by the filthy effects of Satan on his followers. Because we rub shoulders with these folk on a regular basis, we should consider how critical it is to plead with the Master daily for cleansing.

APPLICATION: My spiritual curiosity was peaked when I read verse 8, so I studied the meaning of these words deeper. I loved the way this is explained in the Matthew Henry Commentary and wanted to share it: All those, and those only who are spiritually washed by Christ, have a part in Christ. All whom Christ owns and saves, he justifies and sanctifies. Peter more than submits; he begs to be washed by Christ. Those who truly desire to be sanctified, desire to be sanctified throughout, to have the whole man, with all its parts and powers, made pure. The true believer is thoroughly washed when he receives Christ for his salvation. See then what ought to be the daily care of those who, through grace, are in a justified state, and that is, to wash their feet; to cleanse themselves from daily guilt; and to watch against everything defiling. This should make us the more cautious. From yesterday’s pardon, we should be strengthened against this day’s temptation. Within pain and filth, there is an opportunity to extend God’s kingdom through an expression of love, humility, and service. This simple act of washing feet is a metaphor for how the world looks through the lens of Jesus’ grace. He sees the people—the world He created—which He loves. He also sees the filthy corruption in the world that torments everyone. His mission is to cleanse those whom He loves from those horrors. This is His redemptive work with feet, families, disease, famine, and hearts. When Jesus sees disease, He sees the opportunity to heal. When He sees sin, He sees a chance to forgive and redeem. When He sees dirty feet, He sees a chance to wash them. Oh for wonderful grace of our Savior to cleanse ourselves daily. With sin in our lives, we are like Peter, guilty and embarrassed for Jesus to look inside and see our filth. With a regular cleansing from Jesus, we would feel honored and proud to be in the presence of our holy God, because we are happy to be living a holy life before Him. Christianity is not like some men say about their marriage – I told her at the altar that I loved her, and unless something changes, that word remains true without the need to repeat myself daily!! That is not true love, and it definitely does not define a true relationship with Jesus. He deserves our commitment to honor Him every day and to commune with Him daily to keep our relationship in good, fresh order. Dear friend, if you have not been to Jesus for cleansing yet today, may I encourage to keep your priority items first on your to-do list? He deserves our first, and our best!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, living in a world filled with the filth of Satan and his demons, it becomes increasingly challenging to allow my light to shine as a beacon for all that represents my loving Savior. Like Peter, I acknowledge that there is a strong need for me to be washed by You on a regular basis. You washed my sin away, when I asked you to, back on 1976. But Lord there is a daily influx of evil that fills my eyes, my mind and tempts me with evil thoughts. Please wash me Lord, so that my mind will remain fixed on You and that I may remain immersed in Your precious love, forgiveness and mercy. Lord, I plead also for my readers that they too may receive a word from You today, and that they may be drawn to You more closely than yesterday. Our wicked world needs You, dear Lord, and I believe it would really help if they could see You in every action by Your representatives her on earth. Use us Lord as Your loyal, honest and dedicated representatives before our family and friends who desperately need You. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you 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!

What Do You Do With What You’ve Been Given?

The Psalmist asked the Lord…. no he cried out to the Lord for help, and the Lord heard his cries. The Lord made a new man out of the Psalmist and caused him to be an example to others in search of a Savior. Perhaps that’s what God wants to do with us today in order to use us in touching someone in need of a Savior. Let’s pray for God’s guidance today as we meditate on His Word.

Tuesday, 2019-06-25

Bible Reference: Psalm 40:1-3
Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: I called to the Lord, and he heard me.
    He heard my cries.
He lifted me out of the grave.
    He lifted me from that muddy place.
He picked me up, put me on solid ground,
    and kept my feet from slipping.
He put a new song in my mouth,
    a song of praise to our God.
Many will see what he did and worship him.
    They will put their trust in the Lord.

OBSERVATION: The Psalmist asked the Lord…. no he cried out to the Lord for help, and the Lord heard his cries. The Lord made a new man out of the Psalmist and caused him to be an example to others in search of a Savior. Perhaps that’s what God wants to do with us today in order to use us in touching someone in need of a Savior. Let’s pray for God’s guidance today as we meditate on His Word.

APPLICATION: Around us there is so much in automation. We press a button on a microwave and out food is cooked, or heated up in just minutes. We are able to text a reminder to a friend that may be hundreds of miles away, and immediately the phone will ring with them thanking us. So what do you suppose happens in our relationship with God? Do we comprehend the need to develop and maintain a relationship with our Creator? Knowing that God has the power to instantly heal, powerfully bring the dead back to life and any other miraculous act that He chooses, how many of us truly take the time, or see the need, to earnestly bow on our knees before our Master and cry out in deep reverence and concern, knowing that there is only One who has the power to heal our spouse; protect our child on the roads that are filled with careless and distracted drivers? Friends, this Scripture reminds us that in response to the deep concern, and sincere pleas of the Psalmist, God answered His prayers; lifted him up from his depressed state; encouraged him to look up in hope, instead of despair and failure. In fact, God placed a new song in his heart that demonstrated the new spirit of a revived man! Notice that this ‘new life’ – a reflection of God in the life of the believer, leads others who might be looking in, to our Savior, the giver of life and all good things. I was so encouraged to be reminded of the concern my Savior has for my well being, and how He has time for the concerns of folk like you and I. We don’t generally find anyone here on earth that has time to listen to our concerns, because they have so many of their own. But when we live in total surrender to our Maker, we are assured that He loves us unconditionally; He cares for us – His children; and that He already has a place prepared for us where we will live eternally in His presence. Oh what a love our Savior has for us! Do you know Him personally my friend? If not, please take time to read my Footnote and take the necessary action to accept Jesus as you Lord and Savior! There is no greater joy!

PRAYER: From the ugliness of our sin; from the depth of despair; and from the hopelessness of Hell, praise God I can claim Jesus, my Lord and Savior, for all eternity. Lord, I pray that there will be some who will read this devotional, that for the very first time they would see the need for a Savior. Oh that today might be that day of Salvation for them. You came to this world to bring hope and everlasting joy. May that become evident to ones you have chosen to hear You message of hope today. AMEN!

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

Step Up To The Plate and Tell Your Story!

Saul lived a very dramatic life. He was known for persecuting and killing Christians of his day. However, in our Scripture today we can see where God completely turned this man’s life around. In fact, there was such a change that it involved Saul’s name being changed to Paul in order to identify the drastic change in the man himself. This kind of change may cause some to stay out of the public’s eye, because it would be so challenging for anyone to believe their story. But this was not the case for Paul, for he was overjoyed and wanted the world to know his story!

Tuesday, 2019-05-27

Bible Reference: Acts 22:7-11
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: As I fell to the ground I heard a voice say, ‘Saul, Saul . . . why are you persecuting me?’ “I answered, ‘Who are you, my Lord?’ “He said to me, ‘I am Jesus, the Victorious. I am the one you are persecuting.’ “Those who were with me saw the brilliant light, but they didn’t hear the voice of the one who spoke to me. 10 “So I asked, ‘Lord, what am I to do?’ “And the Lord said to me, ‘Get up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told about all that you are destined to do.’ 11 “Because of the dazzling glory of the light, I couldn’t see—I was left blind. So they had to lead me by the hand the rest of the way into Damascus.

OBSERVATION: Saul lived a very dramatic life. He was known for persecuting and killing Christians of his day. However, in our Scripture today we can see where God completely turned this man’s life around. In fact, there was such a change that it involved Saul’s name being changed to Paul in order to identify the drastic change in the man himself. This kind of change may cause some to stay out of the public’s eye, because it would be so challenging for anyone to believe their story. But this was not the case for Paul, for he was overjoyed and wanted the world to know his story!

APPLICATION: There are several miraculous things about this experience shared by Paul:

  • It was Personal – Paul didn’t share a story with the group arresting him about a friend of his, or a story he had read in ancient transcripts, he shared his story;
  • Recognized it was God speaking – Paul’s first response to the voice he heard was “Who are you, Lord?” When God gets our attention, we know that it is divine, holy and very personal;
  • It was transformational – Paul, a persecutor of Christians and a destroyer of churches, immediately recognized it was God, and instead of cursing God, as he had been doing, he asked for further instructions!
  • It was shared without regard to the place or occasion – Paul didn’t wait until he was in the synagogue, or among fellow believers, or until it was church time. In fact, this seemed like a very odd time to share his testimony, but Paul shared his story anyway!

I believe that the whole purpose of Paul sharing his story was: that he not only wanted his captors’ eyes to be opened to the fact that he was a fellow Roman citizen, but also that they might hear, understand and come to know the God that touched, and ministered through, Paul. He was a true evangelist, both in the pulpit and out of it. Like Paul, we have a ‘story’ that we should share with folk. Often in conversations we step up to the plate and tell a story about an incident in our lives that we believe is far greater than anything said so far by anyone else. Imagine the quiet that would fill the room if, in the middle of discussions about sports, or hunting or family, we would jump in and share our story about our conversion? This is basically what happened here! Among all the confusion and excitement of calming the crowds and making an arrest, Paul asked for a moment to share his story. Wow! Friends, God can use us for His glory in any circumstance that He chooses, if we let Him. But it will only be impactful if we share our story for His ultimate glory and not ours. So why don’t we do that more often friend? We need to do this as often as we can, because we have no promise of a future moment with that individual or group that we are meeting with. Don’t be shy or afraid, God will never lead you into a situation that He will not help you through! Allow Him to do His great work through you! Be bold, yet humble in allowing all the praise to flow straight up to your Master and Lord.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, in Your precious and holy name, I come humbly before You to first say thank You for getting my attention back in 1976 and leading me to accept You as Lord of my life. Thankfully, You have since lead me through many situations and given me ample opportunities to share Your saving power with many people. Please forgive me for lost opportunities, and give me wisdom, humility, boldness and power to share my story with many more folk in all walks of life, so that others might see the glow of Your presence in and through me, and subsequently want to also accept You as Lord. Father God, it is only through Your continued grace that the wicked and lost of this earth can come to know a holy and righteous God, so I ask that You touch lives that I interface with today so that in something that I might say or do, You might impact their lives for Your ultimate glory. I ask all this in the name above all names, the King of all kings, Your one and only Son, JESUS. AMEN!

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

Calling Those Who Know They Are Sinners

Going into a hospital a doctor will find sick people and know that’s where he/she belongs. Jesus emphasised that He came especially for those who know they are sinners – because they are really in need of a Savior. So if we are to follow in Jesus’ footsteps, we will most lightly be ministering more outside of the church than inside the sanctity of the four walls of our church buildings. How do you do with that Christian Brother/Sister?

Monday, 2019-05-06

Bible Reference: Mark 2:15-17
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: Later, Levi invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. (There were many people of this kind among Jesus’ followers.) But when the teachers of religious law who were Pharisees saw him eating with tax collectors and other sinners, they asked his disciples, “Why does he eat with such scum?” When Jesus heard this, he told them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”

OBSERVATION: Going into a hospital a doctor will find sick people and know that’s where he/she belongs. Jesus emphasised that He came especially for those who know they are sinners – because they are really in need of a Savior. So if we are to follow in Jesus’ footsteps, we will most lightly be ministering more outside of the church than inside the sanctity of the four walls of our church buildings. How do you do with that Christian Brother/Sister?

APPLICATION: It’s really easy for Christians to hang out with Christians – because we have so much in common, and we feel comfortable that no one will question us, if seen associating with folk of the same belief. Praise God, Jesus was different in this respect. He shows us that if we are to reach the unsaved, and if we are to truly show God’s love to all people, then we had better make ourselves friendly to all. When we look down our noses at folk, we must remember that they have a very hard time looking up to us and accepting anything that we may have to say to them. Jesus came so that sinners might recognize their need for a Savior and feel welcomed in coming to Him for forgiveness of their sins. As Christians, we are to be Christ followers and therefore follow the lead that He displayed while here on this earth. How are we doing? Do we show love to the sometimes unlovable? Are we humble enough to sit and listen to the deep struggles and concerns of someone that may be deep in sin? Unless we do this, how will they know Jesus?

PRAYER: Father, I pray that You will open my heart today and make me aware of those around me that need You as Savior. Make me very aware that although they may not look like me, or they may not follow the same guidelines of living that I follow, and they may not even attend, or perhaps never attended, church, please help me to see them and You see them. Please allow me to present myself in way that they will see Your love, acceptance and willingness to listen and help them to overcome their shortcomings and see a better way – a way that leads to Jesus! Help me to set my selfish desires and ideals aside so that You may shine through me today! Help to never forget that You reached far down to lift me up from my sin and in my time of deepest need. There is none like You Heavenly Father. Please help me be obedient to Your will in doing Your work, so that others may know and believe. AMEN!

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

From The Abundance of the Heart, The Mouth Speaks

I’m sure that most of my readers will read the above, and if they don’t know the scriptures, they are probably wondering which local church, or group of people, might Jesus be referring to. I wonder what forms of testing (in our minds) might we look for when we observe others who claim to be ‘Christian’. What if we used the same methodology as Jesus did, will anyone make it to heaven in our judgment of them today? How do you suppose you and I might fear in His eyes, would we make it?

Saturday, 2019-03-23

Bible Reference: Matthew 25:42-43
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 42 For when you saw me hungry, you refused to give me food, and when you saw me thirsty, you refused to give me something to drink.43 I had no place to stay, and you refused to take me in as your guest. When you saw me poorly clothed, you closed your hearts and would not cover me. When you saw that I was sick, you didn’t lift a finger to help me, and when I was imprisoned, you never came to visit me.’

OBSERVATION: I’m sure that most of my readers will read the above, and if they don’t know the scriptures, they are probably wondering which local church, or group of people, might Jesus be referring to. I wonder what forms of testing (in our minds) might we look for when we observe others who claim to be ‘Christian’. What if we used the same methodology as Jesus did, will anyone make it to heaven in our judgment of them today? How do you suppose you and I might fear in His eyes, would we make it?

APPLICATION: There is an old saying that has long been quoted based on what we hear words come from an honest man’s mouth: ‘from the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks’. I believe that Jesus is saying that there are attributes about our life that are strong indicators about whose we are. It’s a very sobering and frightful thought, because it seems like we are part of a world where most of us look to meet our own needs, our own wants, our own timelines, our fast-paced, very programmed, full scheduled, selfish world, where helping others are often excluded. All too often we tend to leave it up to the government, or the church, or the pastor, or perhaps family to care for those who are broken, or in need of a hand-up. But did you notice how Jesus never referred to the fact that we should give, so our church could help those in need, or we should vote, so we could make sure that our government helps, even though these are two areas in most countries that will help those in need? Friends, I believe that the intent of Jesus here, is to help us to understand that these are ways that a heart filled with Jesus, would express itself. Look again at the ways that Jesus illustrated this to us: (a) Feed those that are hungry – I heard of someone who took a team to serve meals to the hungry who had come in off the street looking for food. They were so humbled, that it had a serious impact on their lives. When last have we stopped to even chat with a person who hadn’t eaten in 24 hours, or perhaps turned around and purchased a meal to take back for them? Do you suppose that Jesus would do something like that? (b) Those that are thirsty – although similar to (a), yet slightly different. You find yourself thirsty, yet you pass by someone along the road waiting for food or a ride to somewhere. You see their lips parched, but still you drive on by after making many judgment calls on why they are in that position. Would Jesus have gone the extra mile to get them a drink? (c) In need of shelter – you have several rooms that are now unused in your home, but isn’t it virtually impossible to apply the brakes on your car and invite a homeless person to spend the night at your place? I believe that we have even become too selfish to house visiting preachers or evangelists. After all, why should I do that when no one else even considers it? What do you suppose Jesus would do in either of these circumstances? (d) In need of clothes – Many thrift stores will sell pieces of clothing for a quarter most days, because so much has been donated to relieve overcrowding in the closets of the ‘rich and famous’. But I wonder if perhaps Jesus was pointing out that a heart that looks like His would actually see a need, and humbly meet that need for clothing. Yes, you could send them, or take them to the Thrift store, but when last have you passed by someone in need and actually went out of your way to fulfill that need without being asked to? (e) Sick and in need of help – A Christian’s mind is relieved by saying that he would pray for that sick one. And that is commendable, if indeed we remember that promise to pray, after walking away. But carefully notice that Jesus mentioned that we saw the need and didn’t come to help. Do you remember how challenging it was to get around that time as you stayed at home recovering from your surgery, or that time while you were so weak as you dealt with recovery from a serious illness? Didn’t you wish that God would send one of His precious angels to cook a meal for you, or take you to the doctors? Wouldn’t Jesus have been all over that situation? (f) In prison, but totally forgotten by family, friends, the church and society as a whole. Yes that Brother made a mistake, but are they not still your friend? You wouldn’t be able to socialize around church, but don’t you know that there’s a void for that prisoner when you are unable to show that you care? Jesus met us where we were, shouldn’t we do the same for those we care about? Jesus separated the ‘sheep’ from the ‘goats’ based on these principles. What do you suppose would be your sentence, friend?

PRAYER: Father in heaven, we are such a spoiled bunch, You have blessed us with so much, yet we hold it tight to ourselves and often feel like we have earned our blessings and therefore can easily choose what we should do with them. This has hardened us to look on others in need without it impacting our hearts, and for this I humbly ask for your forgiveness, Lord. Christians often ask, and mostly strive to be more like You every day, but I pray today that change would come from impacted hearts, touched by Your ministry, Your character and Your words. Help us to set self aside and assume soft, moldable, usable hearts directed by the Master alone. Those in need, are really in need of Jesus more than anything else, and we all fit into that. Oh that we may constantly be aware of the need for our Savior, and may our hearts be humbled to not only seek Your face for our needs, but for ways to help others. Lord grant us wisdom to move and/or speak just like You demonstrated, so that others might truly see Jesus. AMEN!

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

What God Requires of Us

A new year, a new beginning! Famous words that we hear around the beginning of each new year, but what does that actually mean? For some, it refers to diet. For others it may pertain to correcting the wrong attitudes of the past year; or putting aside hatred and striving to love one another; or a number of other things that we would like to start afresh on. What about the child of God? What might we want to do differently, or better? Let’s look to the Bible for our guide on this…

Friday, 2019-01-04

Bible Reference: Micah 6:6-8
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text:  What shall I bring to the Lord, the God of heaven, when I come to worship him? Shall I bring the best calves to burn as offerings to him? Will the Lord be pleased if I bring him thousands of sheep or endless streams of olive oil? Shall I offer him my first-born child to pay for my sins? No, the Lord has told us what is good. What he requires of us is this: to do what is just, to show constant love, and to live in humble fellowship with our God.

OBSERVATION: A new year, a new beginning! Famous words that we hear around the beginning of each new year, but what does that actually mean? For some, it refers to diet. For others it may pertain to correcting the wrong attitudes of the past year; or putting aside hatred and striving to love one another; or a number of other things that we would like to start afresh on. What about the child of God? What might we want to do differently, or better? Let’s look to the Bible for our guide on this…

APPLICATION: When we set the rules on something, we can usually win, because we make the expectations within eyeshod of what we might attain. I don’t believe there is a human alive that sets goals to make sure they will lose the fight to attain them. However, when God has expectations for us, people of faith, should exercise that faith as they put forth every effort, with the help of the Master, to please God. Friends, let’s be reminded right up front that there ain’t nothing that you and God can’t do! Remember that He is the One who created this world very carefully so that you and I would survive on all that He provided. He created humans so that we may reproduce and be very much like Himself. He smashed the head of Satan and put him in his place. So since our God has proven Himself in so many ways, why is it again that you feel defeated; or so challenged to love others; or so unwanted that you feel like there is no relationship between you and God? Why have you not called on the name of the Lord in praise and thanksgiving when you have seen His hand at work in your life? Why have you not anchored yourself at the feet of Jesus, begged Him for forgiveness of your sin, and acknowledged in humility that you are nothing without Him? Won’t you try calling on the Lord Jesus to fill you with His awesome forgiveness, power, direction and unending love that leads to life eternally with Him in glory? Our Scripture reminds us of what God expects of us: (1) Do what is just – treat your neighbor as yourself, without prejudice or covetousness. In other words, treat others the way that you have seen God treat you, and others you know; (2) Show continuous love to others. Love as God has loved you. He gave His life for you, so what are you prepared to give for others in need around you? and (3) Live in humble and obedient fellowship with God. Humility means that you don’t have all the answers, and you are dependent on God. It means that you put aside any assumptions of what you feel others need, or the world deserves, and totally surrender to God for all that He commands. He’s in charge my friend! We’re just His humble servants carrying out His orders. Now that He has shown us what He requires of us, how will this change your direction, or goals for 2019? Try talking to Him about what He would have you do, will you?

PRAYER: Precious Lord Jesus, please forgive us for the plans we make, knowing full well that we have no idea about tomorrow, yet without consulting You – the One who has tomorrow in the palm of Your hand. You have reminded us in Your Word again today what You require of us Lord. May we be faithful in assuming our roles as obedient servants, ready to act on Your orders, and may we seek to be more like You in everything we do, oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer, AMEN!

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

Robe Yourself With Virtues of God

Around this time of the year we begin to reflect over the accomplishments, failures, heartaches and missed goals of the year about to end, and many of us will begin to set goals for the incoming year. It’s always good to have something to reach towards, for without that, we might tend to merely exist and settle for anything that comes our way. What if we chose some spiritual goals for 2019? Let’s meditate on the ones listed in today’s Scripture and see what God might be directing us towards.

Friday, 2018-12-28

Bible Reference: Colossians 3:12-14
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 12 You are always and dearly loved by God! So robe yourself with virtues of God, since you have been divinely chosen to be holy. Be merciful as you endeavor to understand others, and be compassionate, showing kindness toward all. Be gentle and humble, unoffendable in your patience with others. 13 Tolerate the weaknesses of those in the family of faith, forgiving one another in the same way you have been graciously forgiven by Jesus Christ. If you find fault with someone, release this same gift of forgiveness to them. 14 For love is supreme and must flow through each of these virtues. Love becomes the mark[k] of true maturity.[l]

OBSERVATION: Around this time of the year we begin to reflect over the accomplishments, failures, heartaches and missed goals of the year about to end, and many of us will begin to set goals for the incoming year. It’s always good to have something to reach towards, for without that, we might tend to merely exist and settle for anything that comes our way. What if we chose some spiritual goals for 2019? Let’s meditate on the ones listed in today’s Scripture and see what God might be directing us towards.

APPLICATION: I believe that we unconsciously set New Years’ goals for ourselves, depending on our audience at the time. For we tend to concentrate on spiritual goals when we are with God or His people; and we tend to drift more into financial and other personal goals when we are with our friends and family. This may not be a bad philosophy, but we might question ourselves as to why is there a need to compartmentalize depending on the audience. I believe that when God listens to the cry of His precious child’s heart, He listens for everything that might be troubling that child, or being celebrated by them. After all, if we are going through financial woes, don’t you know that will have a serious impact on our trust in God, our celebration of His blessings, and our requests made of Him? On the flip side of the coin, don’t you know that our attitudes will be drastically impacted when we are struggling in our relationship with God? So might we not be much more content to speak with God about all aspects of our life, and seek His direction as we establish goals for the New Year? After all, He’s the only One who truly knows what will transpire next year, so His guidance is vital. However friends, I believe that God has given us some virtues to look at enhancing in the days ahead. Think about these things: be holy as our Father is holy; be merciful as we seek to understand others; be compassionate and show kindness to others, as you take the focus off self and all that you want; be gentle; be humble; be so patient with others that you would never offend them; learn to tolerate the weaknesses of believers, for you are one also, and you could also easily fall short in multiple ways; God has forgiven you, so learn to also forgive others, especially for their faults; and love – remember, your love for others will be a sign of your maturity in Christ. Friends, can you imagine how much better our world will be (all those that we touch and impact), if we choose to seek God’s help in achieving these virtues in 2019? Can you imagine the reduction in stress levels for us individually when we strive for these goals? I believe that as we work towards these goals, we will see God also bless us with the other things He knows that we need, such as financial freedom; good decisions about people and events that we are a part of, etc. As our priority shifts towards our God and His righteousness, I believe that we will see more clearly how truly serious we are about Him.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for saving my soul , thank You Lord for making me whole, thank You Lord for giving to me, Thy great salvation so rich and free! Your Word is a light unto our path oh Lord, may we read it, take it to heart and be obedient to it, with Your amazing help! As we depend on You for all that 2019 brings our way, may we never cease to stop asking You for help in living life here on earth as You intended for us. May others see Your virtues in us before we ever open our mouths to evangelize with words! AMEN!

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

What’s The Difference?

The Israelites came to themselves, realized their hopeless condition, recognized that God was the only one that could help them, and they turned to God. What’s so different about them – and us?

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Nehemiah 9:3 (NLT)

TEXT:  They remained standing in place for three hours while the Book of the Law of the Lord their God was read aloud to them. Then for three more hours they confessed their sins and worshiped the Lord their God.

OBSERVATION:   The Israelites came to themselves, realized their hopeless condition, recognized that God was the only one that could help them, and they turned to God. What’s so different about them – and us?

APPLICATION:   Just like the Israelites, I believe that we are plenty smart enough to recognize that we have no control of everything that is going on in this world in which we live. In fact, we should all recognize that we really don’t have full control of our own world – the surroundings in which we find ourselves every day. Yet, in our stubbornness we try to convince ourselves that there are many others out there much worse than us, so we can’t be that bad after all. Here are some things that I would suggest we stop to consider and pray about:

  • Our lost condition – I know, mom took you to church as a young child and she introduced you to the preacher. It sounded to you like he had everything under control, and he made it sound like God cares for you, so you have nothing to worry about! May I remind you friend, that the Word of God says that unless you have personally invited Jesus into your heart and life and believe on Him as your Lord  and Savior, you are personally headed for a sinners’ Hell;
  • No time for church, Bible study or prayer – Notice that the Israelites spent a quarter of a day (3 hours) hearing from God, through the reading of His Word, and another 3 hours in prayer and worship. This was a great sacrifice from their day of work and/or family, but they made it a priority. Do you find time in your day to read God’s Word, pray, and worship your Father? At the end of each day, try bending your head in reverence before God and tell Him how none of that was a priority to you. If you then feel OK and able to sleep, then you are not yet ready to totally commit yourself to God;
  • Humbleness – Whenever we stop, listen to God and seek God’s face with humbleness of heart, we will recognize God for who He is, and be willing to listen to Him regarding who we are and who He wants us to be. Friend of God, we are to be His duplicate here on earth, so read His Word and learn the mind of Christ so that you will understand the character of our Lord. People need the Lord, not us.

PRAYER:   O what a Savior! O what an example for us to follow! Thank You Lord for saving my soul, thank You Lord for making me whole, thank You Lord for giving to me, Thy great salvation, so rich and free! Thank You also dear God for providing examples of the Israelites as we read in today’s Scripture, for it serves as a wake-up call for us, for it opened our eyes to our weaknesses today, and led us to the cross to seek Your face in forgiveness. Lord, now use the words of Your servant to also touch the hearts of those that may read this devotional today. Speak to Your children Lord and draw them close to You. AMEN!

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