|Ephesians 4:30-32 (TLB)
|30 Don’t cause the Holy Spirit sorrow by the way you live. Remember, he is the one who marks you to be present on that day when salvation from sin will be complete.
31 Stop being mean, bad-tempered, and angry. Quarreling, harsh words, and dislike of others should have no place in your lives. 32 Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God has forgiven you because you belong to Christ.
|This is an awesome passage today, in that it tells us what pleases our Father; Some major things that we should strive to avoid in our character; but most importantly, some things that we should be doing that really exemplifies and pleases Christ.
|Many people look at the Bible as a Book of ‘don’ts’ for there is so much that we are told not to do. This could be the case for those who have a guilty conscience for all that they are doing that probably do not please our Maker. For I have found in several cases where, although we are told about our wrong doings, we can also find even stronger teachings on what we should be doing that would please God. Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, told the Ephesians, and I truly believe that his Words are still echoing to the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ today, that there are some things that we do that are so contrary to the will of Christ, that it downright sorrows, or grieves the Holy Spirit. No doubt there are tons of guilty consciences hitting each reader by now, for that same sweet Holy Spirit also speaks to us personally about what displeases Him. But let’s have a look at what Paul taught, and let’s particularly draw a parallel between what the Holy Spirit dislikes, vs what pleases God:
Now, although Paul didn’t say that the first list of characteristics were not of Christ, it did say that the second list – especially forgiveness, was the image, or practice that imitates how God has forgiven us because we belong to Christ. Friends, we must always keep in mind that our natural, sinful selves will lead us towards the characteristics mentioned in the first bullet. A surrendered life, seeking to please the Master – Jesus Christ, will always seek to do the things mentioned in the second bullet. It may be a good idea to keep the two lists posted in a prominent place to remind us when we are acting ungodly and displeasing the Holy Spirit, so that we may quickly seek God’s help to overcome and change our evil ways. Being a child in the Algreen home, caused me to always strive to please my Algreen parents. Being a child of the King of all kings, should always cause you and I to strive towards pleasing Jesus Christ in every aspect of our lives. There’s a song that includes the words ‘they will know us by our love’, meaning that the world will recognize Christians by their love – the love and character of Jesus Christ. How are you perceived by others Brother and Sister? Is it obvious to whom you belong, based on your actions and characteristics?
|Lord Jesus, You set an awesome example for us to follow. So in reading this passage today and hearing Paul teach on the characteristics that please Your Holy Spirit, we can reflect back on Your Word and see example after example where You demonstrated these same characteristics. Whereas, the qualities on the ‘don’t’ list are all ones that You warned about in many of Your teachings. So Lord, we have been reminded of what pleases the Holy Spirit, and what grieves Him. Please touch Your children today so that we may make wise decisions in every aspect of our lives, especially in our character. May we please You by obeying Your teachings and Your example. In humbleness of heart and seeking to serve You obediently today, I ask these things in the worthy name of Jesus, my Savior and Lord, AMEN!
|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!|
Archive for the ‘Kindness’ Category
THE HOLY BIBLE (Easy-To-Read Version – Micah 6:6-8): 6 What must I bring when I come to meet with the Lord? What must I do when I bow down to God above? Should I come to him with burnt offerings and a year-old calf? 7 Will the Lord be pleased with a thousand rams or with ten thousand rivers of oil? Should I offer him my first child to pay for my wrongs? Should I sacrifice my very own child for my sins? 8 Human, the Lord has told you what goodness is. This is what he wants from you: Be fair to other people. Love kindness and loyalty, and humbly obey your God.
THOUGHTS: One commentary said that verse 8 relays the meaning of ‘spiritual reality’ compared to mere ‘ritual worship’. I believe that helps me to understand what God was saying through Micah here. Weekly we see where thousands of people attend church, but in our experience with them throughout the week, we see unchanged lives – seldom do they exude the love of Jesus in every way through every phase of their lives? Micah chose to expose some of the things that the Israelites brought to the temple, or shared in normal conversation, when describing how they thought they could please God or seek His forgiveness, or just to get right with God. Micah explained that it was not necessary to reinvent what God had already made clear to them. Friends, I believe these words are extremely applicable to us today also, for some of us may feel like our church attendance makes us right with God, or perhaps the offering we give, or perhaps the way we express ourselves over right vs wrong. However, what God relayed through His prophet in verse 8 are some very simple and basic things:
Be fair to other people – Try to understand others. Appreciate where they might be coming from in their thoughts and their actions. Never think that you have all the answers to everyone else’s wrongs. Think about them like God thinks of us – we may be unworthy, but He loved us enough to sacrifice His one and only Son so that we may stand a chance at eternity with Him;
Love kindness and loyalty – This involves being kind to those that Jesus loves. This may involve folk that appear to hate your guts or despise what you believe or stand for. This may involve folk who live totally different to the way you do. But imagine, if you can live beyond what they expect, how will you prove that you are any different to them? Be loyal as if you were serving the King, not just enough to get by in the eyes of those that might observe you.
Humbly obey the Lord – Set pride and personal aspirations aside and obey what the Master desires of you. Humility means emptying yourself of self and refilling yourself with God. I love that old hymn normally sung as an invitation – “I surrender all”, for I feel like my life should be in a constant state of surrendering all of me to all of God.
Anything you need to work on friend? Anything that will help you enhance your spiritual reality while here on earth? Examine yourself and decide to surrender all to Jesus today. When you do, refill yourself with the attributes of God so that He might be able to use you even more while here on earth.
PRAYER: Lord God, Your Word is all powerful and very applicable to our lives today. I therefore believe that You placed this scripture before me today to enhance my walk with You, and to use this blog to help others to also recognize where their strength lies, and the direction that you would have them go in order to become more like You in the eyes of those that they will witness to today. This old world needs Jesus, and we only get in the way when we try to give them more of ourselves. We need to be an open book that Jesus can fill and use its pages to speak to the unsaved. Lord, please have Your perfect way in our imperfect lives, so that the miracle of rebirth might occur in the lives of all that we will touch today. I ask all this in the precious and life-giving name of Jesus, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 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, Sebring, FL! 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!