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

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

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

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

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!

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

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!

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

God Speaks

Like many of us, Job was feeling down trodden, and like God may not be on his side throughout this ordeal of total loss. In fact, Job shared that he felt God had removed Himself from him. Now because everything gave the appearance that Job could have ‘thrown in the towel’ at any given moment, a few friends who felt they could help Job, came with words of advice. Fortunately, these words of advice are also helpful to us today, so we will look into a time of meditation about the ways that God speaks to us.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Job 33:15-19 (GNT)

TEXT:  15 At night when people are asleep,
    God speaks in dreams and visions.
16 He makes them listen to what he says,
    and they are frightened at his warnings.
17 God speaks to make them stop their sinning
    and to save them from becoming proud.
18 He will not let them be destroyed;
    he saves them from death itself.
19 God corrects us by sending sickness
    and filling our bodies with pain.

OBSERVATION:   Like many of us, Job was feeling down trodden, and like God may not be on his side throughout this ordeal of total loss. In fact, Job shared that he felt God had removed Himself from him. Now because everything gave the appearance that Job could have ‘thrown in the towel’ at any given moment, a few friends who felt they could help Job, came with words of advice. Fortunately, these words of advice are also helpful to us today, so we will look into a time of meditation about the ways that God speaks to us.

APPLICATION:   When we are in the middle of despair, it is challenging for us to talk to God and seek the positive He is trying to achieve through our despair. When we are praying for the next big thing in our life, it is extremely challenging to think positive about that, when suddenly things start going wrong, or at least totally opposite to what we had envisioned. Job was a very godly man, but he was still very much human just like us. Granted, he was stronger than most of us, because when his wife had about as much as she could take, she suggested to Job that he should just curse God and move on with his life. However, there were friends who came along, perhaps accountability partners, and tried to help Job face this crisis in his life with a view on God. Friends, when we are praying in one direction asking for a specific thing to happen or take place for us, don’t we tend to brush off the other answers or direction that we obviously receive from God as our ‘not hearing from God’? Shouldn’t we stop at times and accept the answer as ‘No’, instead of pressing on with begging God because we feel like obviously God is silent on our request? I heard a pastor say at one time that he felt called by God to our church, and he felt obligated to remain there until he felt the call to go elsewhere, not because he got a better offer from the church down the road. Often we pray because of a better offer Satan is prodding us along with, but when we ask God for His direction, it means that we know that the answer could be ‘Yes’, but it could be a challenging ‘No’ also. Oh that God would teach His children to not come before Him to ratify their decision, but instead to seek His perfect will for their life, and seek His direction on how to accomplish His will in a way pleasing to Him. Job’s friend, Elihu, gave Job and us, an excellent reminder of some of the ways that God might choose to speak to us. Are you listening friend? And are you ready and willing to obey the Master wholeheartedly, regardless of anything else that may happen all around you? Let’s seek God with all our heart, and be willing to obey Him with all our mind, soul and being.

PRAYER:   Oh that more of us will pray as young Samuel once prayed, ‘Speak Lord, for thy servant heareth’. For many of us pray to You oh Lord, and we tell You what we want and how we want it, and unless You knock us up alongside our head, we walk away assuming that we have Your blessing on our newest project that we came up with. Lord, if we are truly going to listen to You, I feel like we need to come before You like empty vessels waiting to be filled and directed by You. Please Lord, teach us to pray aright. Help us to come before You with no personal agendas and listen carefully to what You would have us to say, to do, to be, and to reflect in the eyes and minds of others. Your will is what we desire Lord, please teach us how to accomplish that. 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 Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

 

The Listening Ear of Our Awesome God

The evidence of a stubborn child who was given lots of power at a young age, is evident in the first 11 verses of this chapter. A young man who watched his dad rule most his life under the watch-care of the Almighty God, yet Manasseh joined in with those who opposed God and together they turned their country totally around to serve the evil one. As a last resort in trying to regain the hearts of Manasseh and his people, God was forced to the very extreme. He sent the Assyrian army in to capture Manasseh and to totally disrupt his people. In spite of all his evil doings, Manasseh finally called out to God during his awful punishment by the Assyrians. And in spite of all that Manasseh did, God still listened to his cry, forgave him, and took him safely back home. Did you ever think that your deeds were much too evil to approach a holy God?

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Chronicles 33:12-13 (Voice)

TEXT:  12 From this position of complete powerlessness, Manasseh finally humbled himself and begged the forgiveness of the Eternal God of his fathers. 13 He heard Manasseh’s prayer and found it sincere; He returned Manasseh to the throne in Jerusalem. From that day forward, Manasseh never doubted that the Eternal was the True God.

OBSERVATION:   The evidence of a stubborn child who was given lots of power at a young age, is evident in the first 11 verses of this chapter. A young man who watched his dad rule most his life under the watch-care of the Almighty God, yet Manasseh joined in with those who opposed God and together they turned their country totally around to serve the evil one. As a last resort in trying to regain the hearts of Manasseh and his people, God was forced to the very extreme. He sent the Assyrian army in to capture Manasseh and to totally disrupt his people. In spite of all his evil doings, Manasseh finally called out to God during his awful punishment by the Assyrians. And in spite of all that Manasseh did, God still listened to his cry, forgave him, and took him safely back home. Did you ever think that your deeds were much too evil to approach a holy God?

APPLICATION:   Can you think of a time that you felt like you were so far from God, that you felt estranged from Him, and you wondered who you could possibly call on now? If we were to be honest, I believe that we would all agree that there were certain times in our life since accepting Jesus as Lord, that this occurred to us. What a distant feeling. What a lost and alone time for us. A time that we felt like no one cared what happened to us. So what caused this, friends? Do you supposed there was a purpose in this by God? I believe that all too often we know very well why God is disciplining us individually. To the outside world, they have seen only the side of you that you opened up to them, but with God, there are no secrets. For He knows the very hairs on our head, and He knows the very innermost thoughts that we have. Isn’t that scary? Or shall I say, mind-sobering to the extent that we realize that we can remove the ‘wall’ that we’ve been hiding behind, or sheltering ourselves behind, from those that we would just as soon not be privy to those actions, words or thoughts. So why do you suppose that God finds it necessary to make us go through these challenging times in life? Allow me to give you a real life  example: last week a retired missionary asked for prayer for her grandson who told his missionary parents that he felt haunted by an evil spirit, who was following him around. The church body gathered around and prayed over these grandparents on behalf of their troubled grandson. I followed up on that request this week, and the grandmother shared about a strange encounter that her daughter had with a lady she met over recent days who shared a concern about her son being troubled by what felt like an evil spirit following him around! The daughter explained to this non-christian how the prayers of her family and home church prayed to God for the same thing that was happening to her son, and how God removed those thoughts from her son! So why does evil things come our way at times? Well, they came to Manasseh to open the door for God to work in his life, for the good of his nation and for the glory of God. Why did this evil spirit interfere in this your grandson’s life, it could have been for the sole purpose of opening the eyes of this nonbeliever and to draw her to the God who loves her and her son who was impacted by an evil spirit. It is not our jobs to question dear one, but rather to open our hearts to Jesus and allow Him to have His perfect will in our lives, for His precious glory, and for the eternal welfare of those that He touches, even through us.

PRAYER:   Precious Lord, have thine own way in us today. You took Manasseh to a very low point in his life in order to get his attention, and to turn his eyes towards the living God. His redirection in life caused his people to worship his God in lieu of the many gods they knew and worshiped. I pray that we might learn from this experience with our ancestor, and consecrate our lives wholly and solely to the one true God, who has our best interest at heart. In turn, I pray that God will start a new work within us and through us, so that He might be glorified through everyone that we come into contact with. 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 Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!