Your Mindset When Listening

As you meditate with me on the Word today I would ask that you not look for how this parable refers to the Brother next to you, or the Sister behind you in church, but rather, how this applies to you. Having taught the Bible in a Sunday School setting, I could look across an audience and see that almost every student was in a different mindset about being there: who’s teaching; who’s sitting next to them; and whether they wanted to be there, or not. Each of these things impacted what they received from the lesson. Allow God to speak with you about your heart’s condition today.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2021-05-05
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Mark 4:3-9
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT: “Consider this: A sower went out to sow (seed). As he sowed some fell along the beaten path and soon the birds came and ate it. Some fell onto gravel with no topsoil and quickly sprouted since the soil had no depth. But when the days grew hot, the sprouts were scorched and withered because they had insufficient roots. Some fell among the thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. But some fell onto good, rich soil that kept producing a good harvest. Some yielded thirty, some sixty—and some a hundredfold! If you understand this, then you need to respond.”

APPLICATION: I find it absolutely amazing how we could have read a passage of Scripture all our lives, heard sermons on it, had Sunday School lessons on it, yet today God has a new revelation for you in that very passage! God’s Word is alive and active! Yet in today’s Scripture, I am reminded that no matter how hard I aim at applying the Word of God to my life first and foremost, yet I am caught off-guard at times where God will say ‘are you listening good?’ Or as our Scripture ended ‘you need to respond’. I don’t believe that I am all that different to most of you that will read this devotional, for we read, or we listen to the Word being read, and immediately we start applying it to those around us. I have always looked at this parable so differently by applying it to people who appears to be in various states of mind in their relationship with God. Of course the unbeliever wants nothing †o do with the Word of God, for they are so wrapped up in the things of this world, and their minds are so twisted by the evil one. The Word of God will therefore most often fall on their deaf ears because of their lack of interest. But what about the Christian who comes to church unprepared to meet the King of all kings, our Teacher, the God of the universe, Healer, the Author of the most powerful Book ever written. Will they/we truly receive the Word God designed for us to hear in that service? Will it penetrate deep enough to affect our lives any? Will we recognize and acknowledge the reason we attended church that day, or that we were standing on holy ground in the presence of the only Holy God? You might say later, I know, there was one thing that the preacher kept shouting and pounding away on, so you might leave remembering those specific words from his sermon, right? But did God really penetrate our heart with that word, or was it like the seed that landed on rocky ground, where it really had no impact on our way of living? However on other occasions there are times that we will head out to church after a week of trials that resulted in us arguing with our relatives, shouting at our spouse and kids, and wishing that we would never have to return to our workplace. Our minds are racing on all the ways that the world seems out to ‘get us’. Then we enter the doors of the sanctuary. Do we have a switch that automatically cuts off the awful activities and interactions of our week, so that we could now concentrate on the Master? Not so easy, is it? We are reminded of this parable where the Good News is entering a crowded and choked up mind. Can we truly receive the Word and allow it to impact our lives for the glory of God? Friends, Jesus knew fully well that His children are in the world, and way too often we are of this world and struggle to truly connect with His awesome goodness towards us. We are at church in body, but our minds are way too preoccupied to truly be blessed of God. What then shall we do? Jesus said in verse 9 that if we find ourselves in the dilemma illustrated above, we are to respond. Seek the Lord while He may be found. Know that He alone is God and can do ALL things for His glory. In being our Father, He would never want us to be unsatisfied, unhappy and distant from Him. But He will not force Himself into our lives. He wants us to respond – ask Him to settle our minds; give us better attitudes with those we live with, work with, and come into contact with throughout the week. Most of all, give us settled minds so that we could approach the Father in humility and without remorse for our neighbor (those around us). It’s up to you to respond my friend. Don’t wait, do it today so that You may once again enjoy a right relationship with the Father.

PRAYER: Into Your hands I commend my spirit oh God. Cleanse me, correct me, and draw me close to You. Help me to always represent You in this world so that the world will know my Savior and my Lord. May my eyes be opened, my heart softened and my mind be alert to receiving Your Word and applying it to my life so that I may obey Your commands and follow Your example in life. May Your Word be received in ways that it will have an impact on me so that I may go on to bless others in Your name. Bless my readers Lord, and offer them the benefits of Your Kingdom, just as I have asked for. AMEN!

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

The Power of The Word

God’s Word is so powerful and so applicable to us each time that we read It’s pages. We are reminded that God’s Word is of super importance to us, and as such, we must be diligent about meditating on them daily, and keeping them in our heart. We will discover they are life and health for us. As we ponder the Word today, let us question ourselves on whether we are supported in life by God’s Word, and how they may bring wholeness to our sick bodies.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2021-04-16
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Proverbs 4:20:23
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 20 My son, pay attention to all the words I am telling you. Lean in closer so you may hear all I say.
21 Keep them before you; meditate on them; set them safely in your heart.
22 For those who discover them, they are life. They bring wholeness and healing to their bodies.
23 Above all else, watch over your heart; diligently guard it because from a sincere and pure heart come the good and noble things of life.

OBSERVATION: God’s Word is so powerful and so applicable to us each time that we read It’s pages. We are reminded that God’s Word is of super importance to us, and as such, we must be diligent about meditating on them daily, and keeping them in our heart. We will discover they are life and health for us. As we ponder the Word today, let us question ourselves on whether we are supported in life by God’s Word, and how they may bring wholeness to our sick bodies.

APPLICATION: Ever talk to a very old person and hear about what they consider the source of their long life and good health? My grandmother was in her 90’s when I last visited her alive. She had never had surgery, and I don’t believe she had ever been hospitalized, even through her childbearing years that resulted in 16 children. She was blind when I saw her last, but she was happy and a joy to be around. She assured me that she still did her daily devotional and time with the Lord, because over the years she had memorized so much Scripture, that she was able to verbalize God’s Word back to Him as she meditated. Wow! Friends, I was reminded of my grandmother as I read this Scripture today, for verses 21 & 23 instruct us to keep the Word before us at all times, meditate on them and keep them safely hidden in our heart. Remember how I said she was such a joy to be around? From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. If your heart is filled with anger and revenge, then you will spew out words of anger and hatred. God is love, so of course as you meditate on His Word you will find where it reminds us of that unconditional love. Take note, and keep that characteristic of God foremost in your heart. As you ask Him to help you live in a way pleasing to Him, love will be a primary characteristic that will flow through your actions, and included in the words that you speak. Remember I mentioned about the good health my grandmother enjoyed? Could that be a result of verse 22? Only God knows, but I have seen and spoken with many older citizens who have been blessed with good health, and it just so happened that they were also in constant celebration of their personal relationship with God. Friends, I am thankful to God for the number of people He has placed Nuggets From God’s Word in your path. Please let me encourage you to read the Scripture and apply it first and foremost to your heart. Of course you will be reminded of tough times by family and friends and how the Scripture might speak to them, but please don’t overlook that God has a purpose in using His Word to speak truth into your life first and foremost. Watch your heart dear ones, fill it with God and His love for you. This will reward you by helping you love others, but loving God most!

PRAYER: Thank You dear Lord for Your unconditional love for us. Thank You that You cared enough for us to give us Your book of instruction. You’ve blessed us with wisdom and good understanding, so please touch our hearts and help us to be obedient to Your Word, and embed it deep within our hearts so that our mouths will sing forth Your praises, our hearts will grow to love even the unlovable and that our bodies will reflect evidence of Your healing touch. Lord, You are good to us and we would love to grow more and more in that goodness as we join hearts and lives together with others. AMEN!

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

Listen and Obey

Workers are fired for disobeying company policy and rules. Parents become frustrated with kids who refuse to follow their instruction or their advice. So imagine how the God of this universe must feel after providing children, made after His own image, the opportunity to live in a perfect world, yet to later see them reject Him, run away from Him and do their own thing. Child of God, is there reason for us to deny God’s direction and to possibly think that our ways are better than His? God implored us through His servant Paul to listen to His commands and obey His teachings. Are you?

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-09-25
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Hebrews 4:12-13
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)

BIBLE TEXT: 12-13 God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what.

OBSERVATION: Workers are fired for disobeying company policy and rules. Parents become frustrated with kids who refuse to follow their instruction or their advice. So imagine how the God of this universe must feel after providing children, made after His own image, the opportunity to live in a perfect world, yet to later see them reject Him, run away from Him and do their own thing. Child of God, is there reason for us to deny God’s direction and to possibly think that our ways are better than His? God implored us through His servant Paul to listen to His commands and obey His teachings. Are you?

APPLICATION: Ever thought for a moment that your parents must have had eyes in the back of their head, because they seem to have known every little thing that you did? Ever notice how most people behave fairly good inside the church doors, and possibly while in the presence of their pastor, but if you place them in a real tight situation at work, or on the street, the real character of the person emerges? God caught my attention this morning through His Word when Paul explained how we are like sacrificial lambs before our King when we read His Word. In fact, Paul likened it to us being opened up and ministered to without any opposition on our end. This made me think of recent surgery that I went through. I was put to sleep at about 7:30am and I regained my awareness about 5pm that afternoon. During that gap, my neck was cut, parts of my vertebrae were removed, artificial parts were installed, bars screwed onto my remaining vertebrae and then I was sewn back up. I was totally at the graces of my surgeon, and he was free to do whatever he saw fit to do in his professional opinion. There was no objection by me during that time, and I was laid open for any corrections that the surgeon saw fit. Paul used a similar example in how submissive and obedient we should be when it comes to us living out the Word of God. How often do you surrender fully to the Word of God and stand ready to obey His commands without a fight or argument? How often do you take God at His word and obey His every command? Have you been laid bare before God and allowed Him to have His perfect will in your life? To repeat the words of the Bible: None of us are exempt from the Word of God. We can’t get away from what God intended for us to do all along, no matter how smart we may think we are, or who our contacts might be at the church, the courthouse, or anywhere else. God intended His instruction to be for us, and besides missing out on His blessings from unadulterated obedience, God will hold us accountable for living without making Him a part of our life and consequently obeying every other law besides His. Don’t waste any more time dear Friend. Trust God, listen to Him and obey His every command. It’s for our own good!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You showed us how important it was to obey every word from Your Father, and You told us how important it Is that we follow in Your footsteps. The love of the Father is greater than any other love that exists today. So please help us to love You in return, precious Lord, and what better way to do that than to commit ourselves to total obedience to Your commands. Please give us strength and determination for each day, and may You be glorified in everything we say or do, so that others may see and believe in the One True God. AMEN!

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

Government Leaders = God’s Servants – Obey Them

As we read through God’s Word, there will be times where we will come across passages where God speaks to our heart, but its a subject that is so sensitive that we would rather not teach or preach about it. Over the years I have found that I must be obedient to God first and foremost. So if God speaks to me through His Word, then I feel compelled to share it with you, from a heart that was blessed by God. We don’t always like what the Bible is teaching us, but for the child of God, we know that it’s something that God finds worthy of impressing upon our hearts and minds for our own good. Meditate with me on this whole chapter and see what God impresses upon you, won’t you?

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-04-15
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 13:1-2; 4
Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: All of you must obey the government rulers. Everyone who rules was given the power to rule by God. And all those who rule now were given that power by God. So anyone who is against the government is really against something God has commanded. Those who are against the government bring punishment on themselves…. Rulers are God’s servants to help you. But if you do wrong, you have reason to be afraid. They have the power to punish, and they will use it. They are God’s servants to punish those who do wrong. 

OBSERVATION: As we read through God’s Word, there will be times where we will come across passages where God speaks to our heart, but its a subject that is so sensitive that we would rather not teach or preach about it. Over the years I have found that I must be obedient to God first and foremost. So if God speaks to me through His Word, then I feel compelled to share it with you, from a heart that was blessed by God. We don’t always like what the Bible is teaching us, but for the child of God, we know that it’s something that God finds worthy of impressing upon our hearts and minds for our own good. Meditate with me on this whole chapter and see what God impresses upon you, won’t you?

APPLICATION: Most challenging Scripture verses for us to follow, because we tend to look at the corruption and evil that goes on in government, and the laws that are put in place that, often times seem to really hurt Christians. It is obvious from the first 6 verses in Romans 13 that Paul encountered Christian brothers and sisters who thought very much the same as the way we tend to think today. I believe that anytime a law is instituted that works against our bottom line, we tend to send ‘hate vibes’ towards our senators, or authorities who had anything to do with the new law. In fact, at re-election time we have the availability to look into a candidate’s record and see exactly how they voted on certain items. Not a bad idea, but it also helps to build a wall of hatred and/or disrespect towards that person. I believe what Paul is teaching here actually goes very deep, because I believe he is telling us that if we are doing everything above board, then we have nothing to fear of our government leaders. I also believe that if we follow other Biblical references to pray for God’s direction as we vote, and yes Christians you must lead the pact in going out to vote, then our prayer, in faith, will play a part in having God’s man/woman elected. Further, I believe that if we had to publicly pray for our elected officials more than we complain about them, then perhaps they will tend to lean more on God for understanding, wisdom and right choices, and God will intervene in their decision making and guide them into right decisions that will be pleasing to Him. Bottom line is that our officials are in place as God’s representatives/servants for our good (vs 4), and we are to obey them and support them so that God’s work might be accomplished through them. Friends remember, our initial instructions come from God, so our obedience, respect and prayerful support towards our leaders is a sign of obedience to God. Key points – prayer before voting; prayer while these folk are in power, as God’s servants, and our leaders; then follow in obedience and support of those servants of God for whom we are praying daily. Let’s get before God in prayer and ask Him to tender our hearts so that we can be obedient to Him in all things, and all those who are in authority over us.

PRAYER: Lord, this is very challenging for us, so I humbly ask You to help us to get out of the ‘driver’s seat’ and allow You to control our government leaders/Your servants in place for our good. To do this I must first personally ask that You help me to totally surrender to You as my authority, because when I try to do your job I am showing lack of faith and trust in You. Please forgive me for that, and build my faith to a level where I can trust You in ALL things. Lord. I am embarrassed by some of the comments I hear from other Christian leaders about Your servants, please speak to these friends and co-laborers in Your work here on earth and help us all to submit to Your authority and will for our every concern, especially our government leaders. I must acknowledge that You are God over ALL things in our lives, not just the pieces that go our way and seem to benefit us personally. Please remind us of that when we tend to question those in authority. Needing Your help in such a powerful way, I humbly ask this in Your holy and most worthy name, Jesus my Lord, AMEN!

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

Keep Looking Up!

Many of us face challenges in this life, either personally or through the lives of family and/or friends very near and dear to us. We sometimes worry about whether there is any hope or good expectation that might come out of the situations that concern us. Until we open the Word of God and are suddenly reminded that things are looking up for the child of God who places his/her faith in the Creator of this universe. He’s still in charge and because He owns it all, He knows exactly what will occur next. That’s our God!

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-03-11
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: Acts 27:21-22
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: With our appetite for both food and life long gone, Paul took his place in our midst and said, “Friends, you really should have listened to me back in Crete. We could have avoided all this trouble and trial. But there’s no need to dwell on that now. From now on, things are looking up! I can assure you that there’ll not be a single drowning among us, although I can’t say as much for the ship—the ship itself is doomed.

OBSERVATION: Many of us face challenges in this life, either personally or through the lives of family and/or friends very near and dear to us. We sometimes worry about whether there is any hope or good expectation that might come out of the situations that concern us. Until we open the Word of God and are suddenly reminded that things are looking up for the child of God who places his/her faith in the Creator of this universe. He’s still in charge and because He owns it all, He knows exactly what will occur next. That’s our God!

APPLICATION:  Paul and his friends faced a very serious scenario out on the ship on which they were traveling. Their ship had traveled that course many times in the past, but they never faced the challenges like they faced on that fateful night detailed in our Scripture. However, one other thing was different also, they had a passenger who knew the Master of the sea and of the wind and the waves. In fact, he stepped forward to encourage the sailors with a word that he received from an angel during the night. Now I want you to stop and compare this story with the challenges that you face. You too will also face challenges that are unheard of, and you also receive warnings, that also compare to those that Paul offered the boat captain before they set sail. Think about it, we are challenged by our pastor, Sunday School teacher, Christian friends, and even family members, to set aside our life of sin and surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, the only One who could rescue us from the trenches of everyday sin, and keep us safe through the toils of life and the temptations of this world. But what do we do with these challenges? Way too often we continue our independence, our selfish and often obnoxious attitudes, and we snarl at anything shared with us to the contrary. This is precisely what the ship’s crew did, they had no desire to change their plans because of one man’s warnings. Unfortunately, we often face obstacles along the way, much like Paul’s hardened audience faced, and unfortunately these obstacles can sometimes be catastrophic. Sometime we may survive the catastrophes and are able to hear the warnings once again, as we are given a second chance. Notice how Paul finally got the attention of the boat crew after they had tried everything they knew to do? It is so unfortunate that some folk are only open to God after they have tried everything else. Too often our idea of having time to try ‘one more thing’ has very little surety, just as the ship could have easily been destroyed prior to Paul having another opportunity to speak with the sailors. Our take away on this story is that we should never delay responding to God. I have had young friends who have been called from this life very unexpectedly – in the prime of their lives, where it was really important for them to properly raise their young families. I’m sure they never dreamed that they would not have time for one more prayer before their lives were taken. Not all of us can count on the second chance that these sailors were blessed with. Are you ready to meet Your Maker? How will you answer the question “Why should you be accepted into God’s heaven”? Because you are reading this devotional, it means that you have been given another opportunity to surrender your life to Jesus and give Him control of your life. But friend, the warning is clear throughout God’s Word that you have no assurance of your next minute or hour. Therefore, I am very motivated to encourage you into making a decision to invite Jesus into your life, right now. Today is the day of salvation, friend. The sailors paid no attention to Paul’s warnings and almost lost their lives without Christ. Please learn a lesson from this story and delay your decision no longer.

PRAYER: Dear God, I am so thankful that You send messengers into our lives, like You did with Paul to those sailors. This story is a warning to those of us who read it, that we must listen and obey the warnings You send our way. Please help us to see the need to open our hearts and allow You to govern our lives, our desires, our wants and our future. You loved us enough to sacrifice Your very own Son so that we might enjoy eternal life with You. Lord, may we love You enough to live our lives in obedience to Your commands. I pray that my unsaved/uncommitted friends that may meditate on this devotional, may catch a glimpse of Your love and subsequently make a decision to invite You as Lord and Savior of their lives this very day. Jesus, this is an awesome task that can only be accomplished by You, so I ask this in Your most worthy, and all powerful name, AMEN!

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

Where Wisdom Comes From

As we meditate on this Scripture today, let me encourage you to click on the Scripture reference above and read the whole chapter, for you will not only see where Micaiah listened intently to God for his direction, but also we see the same with king Jehoshaphat. The facing challenge for us today is to determine if we are a ‘crowd pleaser’, or a true servant of God seeking to obey Him in every way that He ordains. I believe that way too often we tend to be the former, instead of the latter. Is that pleasing to God?

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-03-03
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 18:12–13
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: Meanwhile, the official who had gone to fetch Micaiah said to him, “All the other prophets have prophesied success for the king, and you had better do the same.” But Micaiah answered, “By the living LORD, I will say what my God tells me to!”

OBSERVATION: As we meditate on this Scripture today, let me encourage you to click on the Scripture reference above and read the whole chapter, for you will not only see where Micaiah listened intently to God for his direction, but also we see the same with king Jehoshaphat. The facing challenge for us today is to determine if we are a ‘crowd pleaser’, or a true servant of God seeking to obey Him in every way that He ordains. I believe that way too often we tend to be the former, instead of the latter. Is that pleasing to God?

APPLICATION: Hopefully we will see from our Scripture today that King Ahab had a lot to learn from God’s servants, and I hope that we too will take serious note of these men of integrity. Way too often we respond to people the way that we feel they want to hear, not the way that we feel prompted of God to speak. Notice in verse 6 that King Jehoshaphat did not give the automatic response that King Ahab expected of his friend. Notice in verses 12-13 that Micaiah was known for being the type person who would be obedient to God in spite of what the king or anyone else wanted to hear. This was so common for Micaiah that in vs 7 the king shared that he would just as soon not even have Micaiah come to prophesy for him, because he was known to say unexpected things. Often this strong minded, honest, dedicated type individual would meet with opposition from his peers, as seen in vs 12. But imagine the peace that Micaiah must have felt when he laid his head down at night, knowing that he laid truth on the line and allowed the chips to fall where they may. Imagine the alternative and how ineffective the prophet would have been if he merely spoke the popular word and then saw disaster follow. He could have gone into depression knowing that his faithfulness could have prevented a disaster. Friend, it is way more important to seek God’s face, listen to His voice and obey Him, in spite of possible breaks in friendships, popularity or even lack of promotion. We should strive to be popular in God’s sight, regardless of man’s opinion or desire. Our obedience to God supersedes everything else. So teachers, teach what the Word says, in spite of what might be going on in the lives of your class members. Pastors/Evangelists – preach what God lays on your heart, and especially what the Word declares. Let God speak to His people. He really don’t need you to sugar-coat things for Him. Sometimes saying it the way that it is written is far more effective, and will have more of an impact, than anything we can add to it. Let God be God and speak to, and through us as He speaks from a loving heart to His people!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for speaking so boldly to our hearts today through this Scripture and through the actions of King Jehoshaphat and through your servant, Micaiah. Ashamedly, I must acknowledge that I am often swayed by popular vote rather than always begging Your wisdom and Your direction. Please forgive me, and if there are others who read this devotional and acknowledge a similar trend in their life, please also speak to their heart about this matter today. You are Master over everything here on earth, and only You are wise enough to know what tomorrow brings. So as Your servants, please instill a sense of obedience and dependence on You, so that our decisions will make a difference for You, and remain in line with Your will. From a ‘self’ perspective, we tend to think way too much of self and our own gain. What this world needs now, is more of You and to be led in Your way through every decision and in every walk of life. Oh that Your servants may be the catalyst of seeing Your will revealed in every aspect of life in which we are involved. All for Your honor and Your glory, oh Lord. AMEN!

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

The Importance of ‘Seeking’ God

In our 2 verses today we could see a recap of the reign of king Rehoboam. It seems like a sad, almost failed attempt at ruling a nation, because he tried to do it on his own terms and couldn’t really see a need for God. It’s really sad, because thousands of citizens probably lost their lives because of his stubbornness and disregard for the God of all nations. As we meditate on this, I believe we are bound to see a lot of similarities in our rulers today, and I believe you will see where they might be almost as bad in our stubbornness.

Friday, 2020-02-28

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 12:13-14
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: 13-14 King Rehoboam regrouped and reestablished his rule in Jerusalem. He was forty-one years old when he became king and continued as king for seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city God chose out of all the tribes of Israel as the special presence of his Name. His mother was Naamah from Ammon. But the final verdict on Rehoboam was that he was a bad king—God was not important to him; his heart neither cared for nor sought after God.

OBSERVATION: In our 2 verses today we could see a recap of the reign of king Rehoboam. It seems like a sad, almost failed attempt at ruling a nation, because he tried to do it on his own terms and couldn’t really see a need for God. It’s really sad, because thousands of citizens probably lost their lives because of his stubbornness and disregard for the God of all nations. As we meditate on this, I believe we are bound to see a lot of similarities in our rulers today, and I believe you will see where they might be almost as bad in our stubbornness.

APPLICATION: I am reminded that our God created all things, and He knows all things – even before we have the slightest inkling that something could, or will occur. I am also reminded how silly it is of us not to seek God and to understand His ways and His message to us, so that we might do it right the first time, with His help and direction. Based on the Word of God, I believe that God is looking at us with outstretched hands waiting for us to surrender to self and seek His perfect will for our lives. Being a father to a young adult, I could appreciate how it must feel for God to look at us and see some of the decisions that we make, and the stupid actions that often follow, because it is easy for me to feel the same frustration when my years of experience here on earth has helped me gain insight into the decisions that my daughter might fumble over. Jeroboam knew of God, but he allowed his world to dictate and influence him into making decisions that were based on popular belief, instead of based on the foundation of an all-knowing God. What are you seeing in your country leaders today? Do you suppose they are making decisions based on the direction and knowledge of our God? What about you? What might your life’s recap sound like? Any different to that of Rehoboam? Based on my life’s experiences, I am convinced that God not only listens to our cry for help and for direction, but I have found where God looks out for His prayed up saints. For you see, I have reflected back on decisions that I made and realized that I never had opportunity to seek God’s voice on, before making certain decisions. Yet I could see from the outcome that He was there all the time. Believe me friends, I’m not a saint, but having asked God to direct my day, and help me make sound decisions that are pleasing to Him and in line with His perfect will, I am just crazy enough to believe that He will honor the prayers of His people in His time. And I know that His timing is always perfect. Throughout the chapter in which our focal verses come from, we could see where God honored His people when He saw them humble themselves before Him, but He allowed attack and destruction when their leaders led them on an ungodly path. Our God is a just God, and He will not allow sin or disobedience to have their way in the lives of His people. Just as good parents do today: when their children, who they bore and raised according to their house rules, decide to walk away from their direction, they will allow them to feel the brunt of bad decisions. However, obedient children who are willing to follow the direction of their parents, will be honored, lifted up, praised, and looked after for life. Our God is superior to our earthly parents in every way! What an awesome God we serve! Do you know Him, my friend? If not, or if you’re not sure, please read through my Footnote, and especially dig into the link ‘To Know Jesus’. Please be assured that your relationship is such that others will be impacted positively by your decisions and actions.

PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for the places you have entrusted us to serve in Your kingdom work. Please direct our paths so that others may be impacted positively for You, and may we never be a stumbling block in their path, nor misguided in any way as we minister in Your name. May we be faithful in listening, obeying, serving and leading, so that You might be recognized, praised and glorified in all that we say or do. AMEN!

PRAYER:

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!

The Lord Has Chosen You To…

In verse 10, particularly the words bolded above, you will see that David shared with his son Solomon that his lecture outlined in the preceding verses, was to draw his attention to the important task assigned to him by God – to build a temple. For many who will read this devotional, I believe that God is knocking on your heart to do a certain work for Him. Are you prepared spiritually and relationally with God to do His work? Think about this as we delve into these verses today dear friend.

Tuesday, 2020-02-18

Bible Reference: 1 Chronicles 28:9-10
Translation: The Amplified Version (AMP)

Bible Text: “As for you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father [have personal knowledge of Him, be acquainted with, and understand Him; appreciate, heed, and cherish Him] and serve Him with a blameless heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts and minds, and understands every intent and inclination of the thoughts. If you seek Him [inquiring for and of Him and requiring Him as your first and vital necessity] He will let you find Him; but if you abandon (turn away from) Him, He will reject you forever. Consider this carefully, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary. Be courageous and strong and do it.”

OBSERVATION: In verse 10, particularly the words bolded above, you will see that David shared with his son Solomon that his lecture outlined in the preceding verses, was to draw his attention to the important task assigned to him by God – to build a temple. For many who will read this devotional, I believe that God is knocking on your heart to do a certain work for Him. Are you prepared spiritually and relationally with God to do His work? Think about this as we delve into these verses today dear friend.

APPLICATION: David had continued the rule of his ancestors and did a fine job, with the help of God. Wouldn’t you tend to think that any of his sons would be well trained and suitable for the ongoing job as king of Israel? David had already began the awesome job of gathering supplies for the construction of the temple, so wouldn’t you think that either of his sons would be great for taking charge of the actual construction? This all makes sense to us, because this is the way that we generally make decisions today. We want the most recognized men in society on our boards and we want them to be prominent leaders in our churches. Would that be because they are the most godly and best ‘called’ men in our churches? What if we asked our church leaders today to take a month or two and consider all that David outlined in verse 9, before telling us if they feel called to the position we want them to fill? But this study is not intended to be a pick on church leadership. I feel like God spoke to me and had me consider how I might be doing with Him, based on verse 9. I wanted to share this with my readers, because I believe that God might be speaking to you about filling some of the vacant positions in His church. Are you prepared? Do you have personal knowledge of the Master? Are you personally acquainted with Him? Do you understand Him, appreciate Him, heed to His commands, and cherish Him with all your heart? Do you serve Him with a blameless heart and a willing mind, knowing that the Lord searches all hearts and minds, and understands every intent and inclination of our thoughts? Let’s all remember, that if we seek Him, by inquiring of Him, and requiring Him to be our first and vital necessity, He will let us find Him; but if we abandon, or turn away from Him, He will reject us forever. Solomon made an awesome king and was blessed immensely by God, so David’s advice paid off and encouraged his son in his relationship with God. Don’t you know that our churches will also be blessed beyond our understanding if we also followed this wise advice from David? God placed it in His special Book of Instructions just for us, because He wanted us to take note and follow in the footsteps of His servant Solomon. I pray that God’s Word will guide our every step today. Consider this carefully, for the Lord has chosen you to …… – what might He have chosen you to do, dear friend?

PRAYER: In the name of the Father, and in the name of the Son, Lord we come. We come asking for your people to receive Your Word, and to follow, as instructed, here on earth so that Your work might be accomplished in Your way and for Your glory. Lord, please help us not to allow this evil world to sneak into Your holy work in Your holy institution because of our lack of knowledge and commitment to You. Lord, we want Your work to continue in our midst. Please help us to not be stumbling blocks of that great work. We want to be just like You, Lord. May we seek Your will and follow Your commands, while allowing Your Holy Spirit to have His way in our lives. 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!

Recognizing Our Awesome God

Do we have reason to doubt our great BIG God? Perhaps, at times, but if we would carefully look around and seek Him, and recognize His awesome works, then perhaps we will show the world who God is. Let’s meditate on the scriptures today.

Bible Text:  Matthew 12

Bible Text:  22 Then a demon-possessed man, who was blind and couldn’t speak, was brought to Jesus. He healed the man so that he could both speak and see. 23 The crowd was amazed and asked, “Could it be that Jesus is the Son of David, the Messiah?”

APPLICATION:  Sometimes we read these familiar stories in God’s Word and God will just speak to us afresh through something contained in that passage. In this story Jesus had performed several miracles, and finally the crowd stepped back in wonderment and questioned among themselves ‘Could this possibly be the Messiah?”. In the world we live in today God is still very active, and although we tend to really hone in on the negative, there are times that our spiritual minds are awakened and we say to ourselves “that must be a Jesus thing”. That certain thing could only have occurred if Jesus made it happen. Friends, I believe that we must be praying with such expectation that we will notice every little act of God and response to our prayers by God. He is very much alive today and active in our lives. It is time for Christians to wake up and give Him credit for all that He does. It is in this type of act that we tend to help believers who are in doubt and result in questioning every act of God. They must see our faith, if we ever expect to be a Godly influence on them! We serve a mighty God, but don’t wait for the ‘big’ miracles to occur, recognize and praise Him daily for all that He does in your life. Good health – especially when we see so many in hospitals or at home sick; safety – especially when we pass a wreck on the road where some innocent person got hurt or even killed; answer to prayer – especially when we see so many that doubt or question the work of God, or try to give credit to chance or horoscopes or palm readers. Friends we serve, and we should recognize the mighty God of this universe, the King of all kings, the Creator of all mankind. Do we have reason to doubt? I believe that we actually have more reasons not to doubt the mighty works of God in our world today.

PRAYER: Praise be to God for accepting me as a humble child in great need of a Savior. Praise be to God for all the miracles performed in my life, in the life of our church and in the lives of my family and friends. May I be very alert to Your mighty hand at work in my life and all around me. May others see Jesus reflected in my life and in their own lives, so that together we can truly be a thankful people praising You for all Your mighty works and wondrous love. Thank You Jesus for caring so much for me. Please continue to work on me and mold me into something that  You can use to accomplish Your work. May I recognize Your mighty works each and every day!

Our Instruction Manual For What’s Ahead

Wouldn’t you hate being on a support desk and receiving calls from users of a product for which you wrote explicit instructions on how to use the product? Yet we have a similar situation in that God sacrificed His very own Son so that we might one day be with Him in glory. Then He spoke through prophets of old to give us His Book of Instructions (the Bible) to teach us how to live like Him and accept His precious gift of salvation. Are you referencing the Bible daily to help keep you on track and pleasing to God?

Monday, 2018-12-31

Bible Reference: 2 Timothy 3:15–17
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text:  There’s nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us.

OBSERVATION: Wouldn’t you hate being on a support desk and receiving calls from users of a product for which you wrote explicit instructions on how to use the product? Yet we have a similar situation in that God sacrificed His very own Son so that we might one day be with Him in glory. Then He spoke through prophets of old to give us His Book of Instructions (the Bible) to teach us how to live like Him and accept His precious gift of salvation. Are you referencing the Bible daily to help keep you on track and pleasing to God?

APPLICATION:  There are times in my job where a vendor will tell us that if we abuse their help desk because we opted not to take the training they offered to us on recent product enhancements, we could very well see fees included in our monthly bill. Imagine if you have at least one Bible sitting on your coffee table gathering dust, then to stand before God in judgment and tell Him that you never knew it was necessary to accept His Son in order to get into heaven? Imagine how God will penalize us for continuing with our excuses of not knowing His Word well enough to share it with others? In the working world we find as much, or more, practical help from users of a product we own, than we do from the text books written by the designer and producer of the products. These groups often meet together in something most vendors call ‘A User Community’. Did you know that one of the largest ‘User Communities’ of the Bible exists right in your own neighborhood, and its known as ‘The Church’! Many admit that these folk are flawed and need help just like yourself, who may not be a part of the community. Friends, the whole concept of a ‘Community’ is that we can share the way that we understand how a product works; how we use a product; and how it is practical for us. For those struggling with proper use of the product, they come to the ‘Community’ to unload their frustrations and misunderstandings. Those of us who successfully use the product every day, we simply share how we use it and how we understand the product should be used. One of the most productive communities that I’m a part of, is monitored by staff of the product owner, and they will chime in from time to time and share with the group about how the product is designed to work in certain scenarios. In the church ‘Community’, we have pastors and teachers and leaders who are equipped to chime in and speak to the way they understand the Word of God was written and what the writer probably intended. Community members are the church attendees, and are most often users of the Bible, because they have accepted the One whom God sent to love on them; to open their eyes to the truth of His Word; and to prepare them for the day of His return when He will come to gather His church, or community of believers, to go with Him and spend eternity in heaven worshiping Him and the Father. Friends, we were intricately designed and made by God. Because He turned us lose to live on this earth, His perfectly designed human beings quickly become flawed by the sin that abounds on earth. So God gave His Word to us through writers that He inspired, so that we could understand the concept that He intended for us, and also know how to unravel ourselves from sin by accepting Him as our Lord, Savior, Protector, Deliverer and soon coming King of all kings. His text-book (the Bible) teaches that this is the only means of us uniting with He and the Father. How are you doing with that friend? May I recommend that you look around the following page for more scripture and help in understanding this truth: https://nuggetsfromgodsword.org/to-know-jesus/.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your Word, and thank You for all that is available to us today to help us understand Your Word more fully. Thank You for the church, a body of believers who strive to know more about God, so that they may be of help to others in the community (church), and to evangelize those who find excuses for their lack of acceptance or knowledge of the One who totally gave His life, so that they might see the likes of heaven and the Father. Lord, we find our way to the cross every time that we are in bad straights and need a quick fix. As we dig into the depths of Your Word and learn more about the enormous love expressed for us, may we accept that gift and study Your Word more intently so that we can understand all that You have to offer us. May we be participators in our church community to receive the benefits of being helped by others; may we willingly share with others so that we might help others; and as we anticipate the glories of heaven, may that bring such joy to our hearts that we will be totally enveloped in the hope of looking into Your wonderful face one day and singing endless praises to You and the Father throughout eternity! To God be the Glory, for the great things He has done – especially for us! AMEN!