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

Archive for the ‘Imitate Jesus’ Category

What’s In A Name?

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-12-15
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 1:21-23 (ERV)

Text:

21 She will give birth to a son. You will name him Jesus. Give him that name because he will save his people from their sins.”

22 All this happened to make clear the full meaning of what the Lord said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will be pregnant and will give birth to a son. They will name him Immanuel.” (Immanuel means “God with us.”)

OBSERVATION:
It’s pretty miraculous how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. The prophets foretold; a virgin girl (Mary) was selected by God and approached by angels to conceive the baby; a simple, humble man who was engaged to Mary was approached to play the part of an earthly father to care for his espoused wife Mary; The most humble of people were selected to be the first to visit with baby Jesus – the shepherds. On and on the story went about one miracle after another that resulted in the Savior of the world being brought into the world as man’s Savior. This is what Christmas is all about, friends!
APPLICATION:
As declared in my ‘Observation’, God went to great extents to bring His precious Son into the world, and throughout the Bible we read about all that He did while here on earth, and the whole purpose of His life here on earth. Of course we also know the ultimate reason that Jesus came, because we remember His death every year at Good Friday, and we remember His resurrection at Easter. The big question for each of us as we meditate on the extraordinary names of Jesus is, what are we known as? To our face, we may be called by our nickname. When our parents are upset with us, they may call us by our full legal name. Based on our habits and our character, we may be known as a thief, or a criminal, or a kind person, or a caring person, a hypocrite, or hopefully a man/woman after God’s own heart. Why all of these names? Because it identifies our character when someone is speaking to a friend and they make reference to you. Notice from the names, that one name will drive that person away from you and one might interest them in knowing you, or at least speaking with you. Just from the name selected for you! Although folk will easily identify us based on the words we speak and with the tone used, but I pray that the actions they experience with you will convince them of whose you are. May the Jesus, born in a humble stable and lived on earth as the living Son of God, be evident in your character today and every day. Stay closely in tuned with Him through the Word of God and in daily communication (prayer) with Him, so that you may be ‘topped off’ each day with even more of Jesus. Keep it fresh and exciting friend!
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, I thank Your Father, God, this morning for sending You as His very own Son with such great purpose, and filled with indescribable love. Lord, may we catch a glimpse of that from You, and may we be known for looking and sounding just like You while here on this earth. May we represent You well, Lord. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog 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!

Who Is Jesus – In Your Eyes?

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-05-10
SCRIPTURE

From:

Mark 8:27-30 (GNT)

Text:

27 Then Jesus and his disciples went away to the villages near Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Tell me, who do people say I am?”

28 “Some say that you are John the Baptist,” they answered; “others say that you are Elijah, while others say that you are one of the prophets.”

29 “What about you?” he asked them. “Who do you say I am?”

Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.”

30 Then Jesus ordered them, “Do not tell anyone about me.”

OBSERVATION:
Jesus had been preparing the disciples for this very important question that He posed to them in verse 29. He had shared several parables that really got them mentally prepared for the question ‘But Whom Do You Say that I am?’ This remains an important question for us today!
APPLICATION:
How often have you gone home from church and been asked about the service? Most of us tend to respond about what the preacher spoke on, if we remember! Some will tell of the special visitors to the service, while others might tell how the preacher really got on to the parishioners in his challenging words. But what if you were asked to specifically tell what you personally got from the sermon? Now, think about a scenario at work, where Jesus and the local church is being discussed. Having heard you mention the name of Jesus before, you might be asked who He is to you and what is your relationship to Him. That’s a wide open door to share the gospel and your personal relationship with Jesus, friend. Are you prepared in your mind to do that? Jesus got very personal with the disciples when He asked their opinion about, and their relationship with Himself. May I encourage you to mull over in your mind how you would respond if a family member, or a friend, or even Jesus asked you today “So who is Jesus to you?”. I pray that your response would influence an unbeliever to learn more about your Jesus and want to know Him in a personal and meaningful way as you do. I pray that Jesus would be convinced that you are His and He is yours, forever!
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, You gave up Your life for me, so that I may spend eternity with You and Your Father. You called me to Yourself and I surrendered my life to You. You have loved me, watched and protected me, and the Bible says that You have prepared a place for me! Thank You for being my Lord, my Master, my Comforter, my Redeemer and my soon coming King. May there always be a witness on my lips, love in my heart and excitement over uniting with You when You call me away from this old earth. May others find every reason to want a relationship with my King, because of the evidence they see in my life. May my readers be encouraged, and always prepared to share the reason for their joy in knowing You personally, so that You may be glorified in all things. 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!

God’s Way vs Man’s Ways

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-02-14
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 14:15–17 (NLT)

Text:

15 That evening the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.”
16 But Jesus said, “That isn’t necessary—you feed them.”
17 “But we have only five loaves of bread and two fish!” they answered.
OBSERVATION:
Man’s Way: Send the crowds away….
God’s Way: It’s not necessary to send them away, you feed them!
Man’s Way: BUT, we don’t have enough food for all of them…
APPLICATION:
In verse 14, the Scripture says that Jesus saw the needs of the people and He had compassion on them. He was concerned about their needs, just as I believe He is also concerned about our needs today. Friends, you could be the most wealthy person around, but in the presence of Jesus, my King, you will be reminded of how needy you truly are. In our quoted verses, I was reminded of the decisions we make in life today, and how those choices also carry forward into our churches. Seeing us in the world setting vs seeing us make decisions as church leaders, I wonder if our people actually sees a difference. I believe that we are so much like the disciples, for we are quick to judge, and make decisions based on our emotions and how the individual, or crowd is impacting our space, or our personal lives. The disciples saw the crowds and probably knew of their many and varied needs, so they thought to head off one more obvious need, and that was the worry of feeding the crowd. I learnt very early in my marriage that I didn’t just pop up on my wife, with one or more people, around lunch time, without giving her hours of preparation time to clean the house and prepare a nice meal! I wonder how much food the disciples would have taken to the hillside for a hungry crowd the size they were facing! The disciples saw the crowd as an inconvenience, but Jesus saw their needs. Also, even after proving Himself over and over before, yet when He told the disciples that they would feed the crowd, there was a rebuttal because they could not see the miracle that was possible by and through the hand of God. So how might we identify with this story today in our world? Do we have those times that we want the crowds to go away, so that we could…. Are there times that the needy approach us and all we look at is their physical condition and assume what their physical needs must be? Do we stop to consider what Jesus might say to those same individuals, or what He might say about our decision to ignore them or send them away? Would you compare your compassion for the needy to be in line with the compassion of Jesus, or are you at the opposite ends of the spectrum on how you might react, compared to Jesus? Friends, perhaps we should consider this Scripture in view of the personal decisions that we make regarding the physical needs of others, and imagine just for a moment that we might also be rejecting their spiritual needs when we turn the needy away. Oh that Jesus might penetrate our hearts so that we may see needs as He would, so that we may express love in ways that exemplify Him.
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, just as You have opened my eyes to being more compassionate of the needs of those around me, or the needs of folk that might walk through our church doors, I pray that You would also tender the hearts of my readers. As Your representatives, I sincerely believe that we must desire the heart and compassion of our Master. Please humble us to look beyond our expectations and our image of the poor and needy, and help us to instead be concerned about their heart and their readiness to meet You, should You call them home today. Lord, teach us to imitate You and to gain the heart of Christ as we approach the needs of individuals today. Oh that they may see Jesus and want to know Him personally! May we not be a stumbling block to hinder such decisions today, is my humble prayer, oh Lord, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog 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!

Characteristics That Exemplify Christ

Monday, 2016-08-15

Scripture

Bible Reference: 1 Thessalonians 5:14–22

Bible Text: 14 My friends, we beg you to warn anyone who isn’t living right. Encourage anyone who feels left out, help all who are weak, and be patient with everyone. 15 Don’t be hateful to people, just because they are hateful to you. Rather, be good to each other and to everyone else. 16 Always be joyful 17 and never stop praying. 18 Whatever happens, keep thanking God because of Jesus Christ. This is what God wants you to do. 19 Don’t turn away God’s Spirit 20 or ignore prophecies. 21 Put everything to the test. Accept what is good 22 and don’t have anything to do with evil.

Bible Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take

Paul in the conclusion of his letter to the church at Thessalonica, shared some parting words that ring out as being very timely advice for Christians even today. Meditate on these things friends, and ask God to give you wisdom and strength to apply them in your life each day. Here are the highlights:

  • Warn those are not living right – this shows love, friends. If you love them you will care enough to warn them in love. You never stop to consider how they might respond if you warned them of a natural disaster heading our way, so warning them about their ultimate, eternal destination is far more critical;
  • Encourage those who feel forsaken – remind them of the love of Jesus for all, not just the rich, or just those important to society, but for all;
  • Help the weak – some are just unable to help themselves, and one day that might be your position in life. Be willing and ready to help those who are unable to help themselves;
  • Be patient with everyone – of course everyone may not be the perfectionist that you are. Of course they may not be able, or willing, to do everything you do. Just as God is not finished with every detail of your life, He may still be working on the one you are impatient with. Furthermore, God may be using that particular scenario to deepen this particular characteristic – patience!
  • Don’t be hateful to people because they may have been hateful to you. Instead, be good to others;
  • Always be joyful;
  • Never stop praying;
  • Because of what Jesus did for you, always be thankful;
  • Don’t try to escape the Holy Spirit or the prophecies, but try to prove them;

Friends, I could find something to share on each item, but I believe you will agree with me that it would benefit us to pin this list up somewhere handy so that we might be constantly reminded of the way we should strive to live. As we do this, I believe we will grow more and more to be like Jesus. We need this, and the world needs to see this so that they might know that we are, who we say we are.

Prayer

Lord Jesus, we are so weak and so susceptible to the attraction of this world, that we are often misrepresented as children of the world rather than children of God. Please forgive us for our failure to honor You and Your Holy Word. Through Your servant Paul, You have taught us about characteristics that would help us to imitate the qualities of the true and living God. Lord, we want to be just like You, and we want the world to see enough in our character that they might see a ‘better way’ the way to the cross – the way to Jesus. Please touch, and empower Your children once again today Lord. Please fix our eyes on You and give us the will to lay aside the desires of this world for the overwhelming joy of being more like You so that we may serve You better and more effectively. I ask these things in the awesome and powerful name of Jesus, Son of the living God, 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!

God’s Holy Reputation

Friday, 2016-08-05

Scripture

Bible Reference: Ezekiel 39:25–28

Bible Text: 25 “So now, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: …..; I will have mercy on all Israel, for I jealously guard my holy reputation! 26 They will accept responsibility for their past shame and unfaithfulness after they come home to live in peace in their own land, with no one to bother them. 27 When I bring them home from the lands of their enemies, I will display my holiness among them for all the nations to see. 28 Then my people will know that I am the LORD their God….

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

I believe that often, because of certain acts, or certain actions that lead to a church leader, or member, getting arrested, we might hear about how that person brought shame on the church, or on their family. This frequently happens in workplaces also, when evidence points to the fact that an employee stole from the company, or leaked critical information outside of the company. In fact, this often has such a devastating impact on the company, that it may even damage their  reputation in the eyes of their customers, or their vendors, or government licensing agencies. However, seldom do we hear that such an incident may have damaged God’s reputation. Friends, I want you to think for a moment about the attributes of God. We think of Him being loving; good; kind; caring; unselfish; sacrificial; protective; etc, but also, all of these things to every race and nationality, and to every God-honoring religious affiliation. When we (Christians) go about our day seeking to imitate these characteristics of God, we honor Him and support His reputation. However, how often do we stop and consider the opposite when we fail to live up to God’s standards? Ever stop to think that your damaging words not only hurt a Brother, but because your actions were not pleasing to God, or representative of what His character stands for, you may have damaged His reputation with the folk who witnessed, or were hurt by your actions?  In verse 25 today, God basically said that He had to step in to save His reputation. Friends, when we knowingly, or unknowingly, do things that tear down God’s reputation, we are tearing down the chances of God getting through to those folk that walk away because of our actions. I believe that we should be holy, just as Christ is holy. When we aim towards holiness, and the overall likeness of Jesus, then God will be able to show His holiness through us to all nations, as indicated in verse 27. We have a reputation to maintain friends, a holy reputation. Are you there yet? You certainly can be, with God’s help!

Prayer

Lord Jesus, we want to be just like You. I could go on with the excuses of why we are not succeeding at this, but I truly believe that until You become our primary focus in every aspect of our life, then we will act like those who are receiving too much of our attention. In this world we are bombarded by the attitudes and actions of folk that do not know You, and therefore led by the very likes of Satan himself. Please put us on guard today Lord Jesus. Protect us from the evil one, and give us wisdom, protection and guidance to live in the very likeness of our Lord and Savior, so that others may see, hear, believe and accept the One we call Master, Friend, and Savior of this world, 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!

How To Treat Others

Thursday, 2016-07-07

Scripture

Bible Reference: Zechariah 7:8–10

Bible Text:  8-9 So once again, I, the LORD All-Powerful, tell you, “See that justice is done and be kind and merciful to one another! 10 Don’t mistreat widows or orphans or foreigners or anyone who is poor, and stop making plans to hurt each other.”

Bible Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

My Take

As I reflected on these verses I thought what would God possibly add to this list for the world He reflects on today. We often tend to compare back to a day when we were younger, and then stand in awe about where the world is today. I believe that if we were privy to just the questions posed on Google each day, it might give us a glimpse into the mindset of our people. In another part of my study today, God challenged His people to even look at the reasons they fast and pray, for often this is centered around their selfishness, and not necessarily His will for His church, His disciples and His people. Friends, let us challenge ourselves to pray for the will of God. We are not qualified to tell God what He should do, or how He should fix the many things that we feel are totally broken. I believe that these verses also helps us to acknowledge that we are slow to accept God’s commands and obey Him, because we must always remember that the Bible is very much alive, and speaks to our current day issues as much as it tells a story about how God ministered to saints of old.  Please read the verses over again. Now please evaluate the portion of the verses that may not apply to us today. How many times do we whine about judicial or governmental decisions that are made and how we wish justice would be administered? Isn’t it because the decisions were not in our favor, or handled in a manner that we prescribed – often without all of the facts? Furthermore, who put those in authority in their place? Now before you pull out the books on me, to show who voted for who, let me first ask you to read Romans 13 and then answer my question. While some parts of the world may have made strides in taking better care of widows, orphans, the poor and foreigners, may I remind you that many of these depend heavily on the church and government programs in order to survive, because they have been abandoned by their own families? I believe that the very last point probably got my attention more than the rest. “Stop scheming against each other”, or “stop making plans to hurt one another”. This is not speaking to the friend or neighbor behind you, but rather to each of us. I believe the opposite of  this, may be better aligned with God’s Word: “make plans to bless someone today” or “think about how you might encourage someone today” or “show more love towards each other today” or “look for ways to help someone succeed today or feel better about themselves”. In a nutshell, I believe that we are being taught how we are to treat each other in ways that might better reflect the heart of God for His children. We can do this friends, because these are the ways that we would want to be treated. Let’s seek God’s power to help us be more like Him in every way – everyday!

Prayer

Father God, thank You for loving me, and for showing love through so many different folk, to encourage me in my walk for You. Your Word is always a lamp unto our feet, and today is no exception, as You have shown us how we might enhance our love for one another, and how we should be especially careful to scheme only towards love and good works towards one another. May we not only be Your hands and feet today, but may we love one another in much the same way that You showed Your love for us. This might be the greatest sermon we can preach today! Please have Your will and way in and through us today dear 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!

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