Proof of Son-ship

I believe that we have always learned that God is love, and that we should use His example when explaining the word ‘love’. However in our Scripture today, John is helping us to understand that if we claim to know Jesus as Lord, then we must be identified as being a person of that same genuine love as Jesus. Easy? No, but let’s try to apply this today…..

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-09-15
SCRIPTURE

From:

1 John 4:7-10 (GNT)

Text:

 Dear friends, let us love one another, because love comes from God. Whoever loves is a child of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. And God showed his love for us by sending his only Son into the world, so that we might have life through him. 10 This is what love is: it is not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the means by which our sins are forgiven.
OBSERVATION:
I believe that we have always learned that God is love, and that we should use His example when explaining the word ‘love’. However in our Scripture today, John is helping us to understand that if we claim to know Jesus as Lord, then we must be identified as being a person of that same genuine love as Jesus. Easy? No, but let’s try to apply this today…..
APPLICATION:
After growing into a teenager, I remember being far from home, and someone at a gas station shouted across identifying me with my dad. I was floored, as I never knew that I looked so much like my dad! We often hear people tell couples that they look like sister and brother. I wonder if that’s as much in looks, or how they act so much alike after being together so many years? Friends, with God’s help, I want to especially share with you the unconditional love that Jesus has for us, and I want to remind you that when we identify ourselves with Him – that we are a Christian, then folk should often mistake us for Jesus, because we act so much like all they have read, heard or know about Jesus. This passage today is telling us that we can’t hate a brother or a sister and claim to be Christ-like, for that would be totally opposite to His character trait. Let me remind you that He loved the men that came to arrest Him in the garden where He went to pray, because He reached out and healed the ear of the one whose ear was severed by one of Jesus’ men. On the cross He pleaded with God to have mercy on the folk responsible for His crucifixion, as He felt they really didn’t know what they were doing. He could have called a multitude of angels to clean up the scene at the crucifixion, much like He did at His birth when He reached out to the shepherds, but He sought the Father’s will instead. These few points lead to the fact that just as Jesus loved, in spite of the circumstances, and in spite of the hatred showed to Him, then as His child, we too must seek guidance, strength and boldness to love those who are easy to love, and those who really don’t want anyone to love them. Our witness to them will be most effective when they see Jesus in our words and in our actions, otherwise we come across to them as just another hypocrite. For those of us that represent our Savior, our relationship with Him is way too important to mess up on this. Verse 8 clearly identifies those who choose not to love. I trust that no one reading this blog today will walk away acknowledging that they are not a child of the King. Friends, please know Him and know true love for one another. If you are challenged to show love for everyone, then have a personal meeting with Jesus and analyze Your relationship with Him. There may be some decisions or cleanup that He may want you to do in your life.
PRAYER:
Dear Jesus, thank You for another identifier, and reminder for those of us that claim You as Lord and Master. You portrayed love to everyone, much to the dismay of church leaders in Your day. Yet You have forgiven us of our sin, and we still look down our noses at some, assuming that we could never love them. Your Word is clear – that attitude highlights one who is not a child of the King. Lord Jesus, please help us to seek Your face, Your strength and Your love each and every day, and please help us to never assume that anyone is not worthy of our love. As Your representative, may we learn to love everyone with the same love that You showed to us when a holy and righteous Savior held out His hand and accepted a sinner like me. May You be honored in all that we say and do today, is my humble prayer that I ask in faith, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Of Highest Importance

A teacher of the law wanted to ‘cut to the chase’ and get the short answer by asking Jesus to tell them the most important commandments. Although I’m sure that Jesus could very easily have said that they all were important, knowing their hearts and the struggles that they dealt with each day, Jesus shared the two that, if closely followed, all other commandments would fall into place for them.

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-05-25
SCRIPTURE

From:

Mark 12:28-31 (ERV)

Text:

“Which of the commands is the most important?”29 Jesus answered, “The most important command is this: ‘People of Israel, listen! The Lord our God is the only Lord. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second most important command is this: ‘Love your neighbor the same as you love yourself.’ These two commands are the most important.”
OBSERVATION:
A teacher of the law wanted to ‘cut to the chase’ and get the short answer by asking Jesus to tell them the most important commandments. Although I’m sure that Jesus could very easily have said that they all were important, knowing their hearts and the struggles that they dealt with each day, Jesus shared the two that, if closely followed, all other commandments would fall into place for them.
APPLICATION:
Like the teacher of law who approached Jesus, we often do this in conversation, especially when someone is known to be long-winded, for we would ask them to give us the short answer, or the 30,000′ high-level answer. Because we are so like the Sadducees, Jesus immediately knew that if they, or we, would commit ourselves to honoring God, and loving Him with all of our being, then our priorities would be in order, for there is no other God but He. Furthermore, our God is a jealous God, for He formed us in His likeness and desires our praise, worship and adoration. It’s not easy for us to apply this if our eyes are on other gods, or if we attend a worship service and our hearts are elsewhere. In the case of the second commandment, let’s not think for a moment that we could love our God and not love and honor His children – our neighbors. Friends, when we have these two things aligned in our lives, can’t you see where it would be especially challenging to commit sin against our God and our neighbors? In other words, we will easily honor the other commandments if we are truly committed to dealing with these two. So based on this Scripture, I believe that God wants us to evaluate our relationship with Him, and with our neighbors. What might He say about that if you stood before Him today?
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, may it be evident to You and to the world that we love and adore You and that we honor you with our worship at every opportunity. May our relationship with our neighbor be one that is filled with love, just as You first loved us, and may we encourage each other towards love and good works. Lord, as this becomes evident to others, may You receive honor, glory and acceptance by those in our circle of family, friends and coworkers. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

How To Prove Love For God

John gives us a way to prove if we truly love God. God proved His love for us when He placed His very own Son on the cross at Calvary as a substitute for our sin. John explains how we prove back to God that we love Him in return.

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-05-05
SCRIPTURE

From:

1 John 4:19-21 (MSG)

Text:

19 We, though, are going to love—love and be loved. First we were loved, now we love. He loved us first.

20-21 If anyone boasts, “I love God,” and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You’ve got to love both.

OBSERVATION:
John gives us a way to prove if we truly love God. God proved His love for us when He placed His very own Son on the cross at Calvary as a substitute for our sin. John explains how we prove back to God that we love Him in return.
APPLICATION:
Many people will tell you to prove that you love them by….. (doing something very special for them). Generally that’s when a friend wants you to do them a favor. However that is not love, that’s doing a favor for a friend. Often we substitute the word ‘love’ for infatuation, or lust or even being impressed with someone. Throughout the Bible God showed His love for us, and for those who know God personally and live each day in appreciation for all that He still does for us even today, we learn that His love is deeper and more sincere than anything we could describe, understand or duplicate. So what lessons have God provided for us so that we might love like He did? Although many, I want us to concentrate on the one lesson that John shares with us in the Scripture referenced above. This will be challenging for us to grasp, especially in light of the church splits we have seen, or Christian families that have parted ways with each other, or perhaps another church family. However, throughout the Word of God, we are taught to do the things that Christ taught us and was appropriately recorded in His Word. The lessons that stand out most to us, is the awesome, unconditional love that Jesus showed for us, especially when He went to the cross for all mankind, even those who scorned, mocked and hung Him on the cross. His sacrifice was for all mankind willing to surrender their lives to His lordship, yes even us , who came from awful lives of sin and self destruction. In surrendering ourselves to the lordship of Jesus Christ, we committed to a life that imitates the life that Jesus lived and exampled before us. So when we are at odds with a believer, or if we ever digress to a state of saying how much we hate another proclaimed Christian, are we not proving the Word of God in these verses by showing that it is impossible for us to say that we love God, if we truly feel ill will towards another believer? The Word tells us that for those who concede to such hatred, prove that we are not children of God, for we cannot love Him and hate a Brother or Sister in Christ. So when you find yourself getting upset with a believer, may I encourage you to examine your relationship with Jesus Christ? Let us learn to prove our love for Christ each day, by the way that we love, respect and treat His children!
PRAYER:
Father, You loved us enough that You gave….. You gave everything so that we might one day be with You and Your Father in heaven. As Your children – Your imitators, we will not only love You in return, but we will also love those who love You. Holy Spirit, please impact our minds whenever there is concern about our love for others. Please help us to stay committed to Your Word every day, so that we might be reminded of our shortcomings and then seek You more earnestly so that we may enrich our lives with more of Your character and Your desire for Your children. May others see so much of Jesus in us that they will desire to know the source of our good works and our love for 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 could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Most Important Commandments

Monday, 2016-09-05

Scripture

Bible Reference: Mark 12:28–31

Bible Text:  28 …..“Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. 30 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

Many are caught aback by all of the commands in the Bible, and especially in the ten commandments, folks looking for a reason to whine and complain, tend to complain about the negativity in the commands. While we don’t see any of that in these verses, there was strong curiosity as to which one(s) were most important from Jesus’ perspective. Hearing the response from Jesus, makes this something that I believe His followers today really need to pay particular attention to, as I believe these contain very important demands for us still today. So here they are:

  1. “Listen, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone.[a] And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. Deuteronomy 6:4-5
  2. 18 “Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against a fellow Israelite, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18

There is an old pop song that included the words “All I need is love” throughout the song. I believe that the one characteristic that each of these important commands are built on is “LOVE”! In the first instance, we are told that we are to love our Maker, Creator, Savior and Way Maker with all of our being. Friends, it might strike some of you to ask, “well who wouldn’t”. Unfortunately there are many that don’t recognize our Master and Creator, so of course they have no reason to love someone who, in their opinion does not exist. May I remind you that many are looking at us to see whether we, who are called by His name, truly love God from the very depths of our being. What do you think? Would your family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, be convinced enough through the love they see from you for your God? As we look at the second commandment, I want you to reflect on the last time you really got mad, or upset at yourself. Now, what did you do to yourself? Did you seek to hurt yourself or deprive yourself from some special treat or event? Did you tell others how evil you were and unlikeable you were? Did you build up strong fences or defenses to keep others away? Then friends, why do we do these things to our neighbors? Remember, neighbors are ones who we come into contact with. Sometimes they are sweet as ‘pie’ to us, and sometimes we get really upset at the things they do. You know, similar to what we probably do unconsciously to others! Jesus wants us to love these neighbors in spite of their faults – as much as we love our very own selves. How are you doing with that child of God?

Prayer

Lord God, thank You for first loving us. You set the plumb line as an example for us. So often we fall so short on demonstrating the sincerity of love that You showed for us, for You loved us, even though You had no sign of love in return. Please use Your Word today to encourage, challenge and provoke us into loving You unconditionally with all our being. As we do this, I believe it will be a lot more natural for us to love one another, but please help us with that also dear Lord, for I believe that we will quickly brush others aside when they show no signs of love for us. Help us to love like You love us Heavenly Father, for I ask this all for Your ultimate glory, AMEN!

Footnote

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

God Has Always Loved Us

Tuesday, 2016-07-12

Scripture

Bible Reference: Malachi 1:2

Bible Text:  2 “I have always loved you,” says the LORD. But you retort, “Really? How have you loved us?” And the LORD replies, “This is how I showed my love for you: I loved your ancestor Jacob….

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

I believe that we are such creatures of finding the worst in every situation, instead of looking for the ways that God, or His kingdom might benefit from our situations. Way too often we are very much like the Israelites, who would hear the words of Malachi about God having always loved them, and then try every which way to bring back to memory every situation where we feel like God didn’t handle it the way we instructed Him. Wouldn’t it be calming for us to sit and reflect on the worst of times in our lives so far, and look for the best things that came out of those? Our reflection today is a reminder that no matter what happens, let’s always remember that God loves us. In fact, He loved us from the very beginning of time, loves us today, and will always love His bride – His chosen people for whom He sent His very Son to Calvary on a cruel cross, just to show how much He loved us. This was visible proof of God proving His love for us, in spite of where we might be spiritually. Let us work towards removing the word ‘but’ from our vocabulary when reflecting on God’s love and promises. If He said it, we can surely believe it, because He never lies. I encourage you to read out loud these words “God has always loved me and He always will, because I’m His precious kid – Praise the Lord”.

Prayer

Thank You for loving even me dear God! As I am reminded of Your love today, please help me to never question Your actions, but to look for the marvelous ways in which You show Your handiwork. May I be an instrument of Your love, so that others might clearly be reminded of the love of God for them also. Thank You for loving on us each and every day. AMEN!

Footnote

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

Love Is….

The Holy Bible

4 Love is patient, love is kind.
Love does not envy,
is not boastful, is not conceited,
5 does not act improperly,
is not selfish, is not provoked,
and does not keep a record of wrongs.
6 Love finds no joy in unrighteousness
but rejoices in the truth.
7 It bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.

Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Thoughts:

If we paid attention to the television, then we will know that ‘love’ is one night stands, beauty, riches, sex or even products, because we are fed all the advertisements that is prevalent way more than the actual movie that we are watching. So grows our children who stay fixed on television each day. But what about the adults, anything different for us? Of course not, unless we concentrate on the Word of God, embed it into our lives and be obedient to its teachings. I want you to think about a typical evening in the life of married couples, so that we can compare that to our understanding of God’s Word, and I believe it will be evident why our country is so filled with cohabitating adults and/or divorcees, from which more broken homes are developed by their kids. First of all, both parents are out working all day – sometimes late into the evening, they arrive home tired, stressed and ready for bed, but their habitual ‘meal clock’ tells them that it is time to eat. So a fast food item is placed in the microwave, or soup is warmed, to satisfy any hunger pangs. In the meantime, the television is on, text and/or Facebook messages are dinging in and demanding the attention of the modern day adults, while we sit down to gobble our food and prepare for bed. Did I forget to include the time needed to sit and truly give our undivided attention to each other to hear about their day, or whether they still have a job. Oh, and what about time to celebrate what God may have done in our lives that day? When this routine repeats itself day after day friends, can you see how verse 7 above can possibly be developed, or matured? Unfortunately, many homes are facing this challenge. Unfortunately many couples are finding little time to express love towards each other, because they have absolutely worked true ‘love’ out of the picture. There’s no time for it and even if there is a minute, our minds are so wound up that we just want to be left alone in a corner with some peace and quiet. Has Satan sneaked his way into our marriages and into our homes to destroy something that God has designed? I believe that Satan would like nothing better friend. Please re-read the above verses, reflect on God’s design for true ‘love’ one for another, and don’t look at what needs to change in the life of your spouse or children, but what do you/I need to do personally so that we may be true followers of Christ and His commands. Our spouse, our families and our world deserves better. Can we do it? What does ‘love’ mean to you? What must be realigned in your life to help you align you life with the true plumb-line – the Word of God?

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, You have inspired great writers like Paul to share Your Word with us so that we may be better aligned with Your expectations for Your children. I can only imagine how You must shake Your head in disgust sometimes at the mess we have made of life in today’s society. I know for sure that we need You more today than we have ever needed You before. I know for sure that we have really failed to do this thing called ‘love’, in its truest form, and that we need Your powerful hand upon us for the strength, guidance and overwhelming power to overcome the evil one. We need the encouragement of Your loving arms around us to cheer us along and to give us the confidence that we need to lay the things of this world aside and truly give our undivided attention to our spouses, our children, our family and all those that take time to listen and/or share with us. I’m afraid that if we are to truly be Your example, we must overcome these weaknesses and depend on You for strength to be the man/woman that You intended and the ones that You can use to minister to unbelievers today. Please be my strength and my guide today dear Lord. Please forgive me where I have failed to express my love to You and to others. Please touch the hearts and lives of Your children who will meditate on this devotional today Oh Lord. We all need You! I place my desires at Your feet and ask all these favors in the precious and loving name of Jesus, my soon coming King, AMEN!     

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the .devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray.

Restore Your Church Oh God

The Bible – New Living Translation

Psalm 85:4–7

    4 Now restore us again, O God of our salvation. Put aside your anger against us once more.

    5 Will you be angry with us always? Will you prolong your wrath to all generations?

    6 Won’t you revive us again, so your people can rejoice in you?

    7 Show us your unfailing love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation.

Thoughts:

In my first read through this passage of scripture I was touched by the prayer of David to save his people, and my heart was deeply touched by his prayer because I can clearly see how many around us, in our neighborhoods and in our cities, need the Lord. However, on closer study of this I realized that you can only restore something that at one time was resident there before. So my heart immediately went out to what David was really praying, because I believe that we are seeing churches dying today at a greater record than ever before in the history of our land. In part, I believe that this is because we need an equally as large evangelism effort to the once ‘saved’ who have fallen by the wayside, as we do to the ones who have totally disregarded the message of the cross. Like you, I am very concerned about all that is going on in our land, and in this world, where we are killing each other without any regard for precious life itself. However, this should come as no surprise to Christians, because even back in 2 Chronicles 7:14 it was declared that God is looking for His people, His children, to humble themselves and pray, before He would give consideration to healing our land. When Christians treat their relationship, their commitment, so flippantly, and when there is no humility in looking to God for His powerful, healing and restoring hand upon His people and our land, what is it that we should really expect differently? Friends, we are bringing damnation on ourselves, on our churches and on our land. Remember, God is still in control and His Word will endure to the end, so we must follow His plan if we ever expect to see God restore us again! What is your role? Are you following His plan, so that you might expect to see Him restore us again? Please, let us humble ourselves and pray…..

Prayer:

Jesus, my Lord, in all humility I pray that You might touch the hearts of Your people once again. Begin with me, I pray. May Your church be revived once again, I pray. May each person meditating on this devotional today realize that this is not the ‘place’ we call church, but the body of Christ that at one time or another made a sober decision to accept You as Lord and Savior of their life. May the places that we call ‘church’ burst wide open from the crowds that will be renewed/revived and reminded of their obligation to their Master and Lord. May Your ‘church’ truly come alive again, so that we may follow Your commands and humble ourselves before You and pray. Lord, may the uncommitted one that may be lead to read this devotional today realize the importance of surrendering themselves to Your Lordship today. We are in desperate need of a touch from You oh King, please hear my prayer and heal us. Please cause us to recommit ourselves to do Your perfect will. For I ask all this in the name of the only One with the power to do anything about our pitiful condition, Jesus, my Lord, AMEN!

NOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray.

How To Handle Evil Against You

The Bible – New Living Translation

Romans 12:17-21

 

17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.

19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” (Deut. 32:35) says the Lord.

20 Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” (Proverbs 25:21-22)

21 Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.

Thoughts:

 

Friends, these words are intended for children of God, because they are not the normal course of action for the person who has no Godly influence, or help to handle situations in just the opposite manner that one would normally expect. The actions mandated in these verses are God-inspired; God-directed; and only possible with God’s help, because in and of our natural selves we would normally lash back at those that misuse and abuse us. This is similar to another command given by God: when your enemy slaps you on one cheek, don’t lash back, turn the other cheek and let them slap you there also. Again, this is not a normal reaction to the natural sinful man. I believe a good question for the Christian would be: “why would God demand something so totally opposite to the norm?” Friends, I believe that God saw His only Son beaten, hung on a cross and crucified, but didn’t send down 10,000 angels to rescue Him, because it was all done for the purpose of showing the world (us) that His love for us extended even to the extent of crucifying His Son. Similarly, when we allow the grace of God to work in our lives and we subsequently behave like Jesus would have, we are showing the world that the grace by which we are driven is one filled with a miraculous love, a divine love. You see, what would the world learn if we reacted just like they would and expect? That we are no different to any other man, right? Now Brothers and Sisters, is this an easy thing? Absolutely not, but for those who are in the Word daily and learning about the ways of God, and constantly being reminded of things like Deuteronomy 32:35 (quoted above), then we know that the love by which we are driven is nothing like the love known by the world. Our actions are totally unexpected by the world, but we are to be obedient servants and follow the commands of Christ, knowing that He will not see His prized possessions taken advantage of. Remember, the last word is God’s, and He will settle the acts against His children. Let’s do our part, knowing full well that God is faithful to His Word and will do His part at the appropriate time. Let’s endeavor to love even in challenging circumstances, not give in and act just like the world expects one of their own to act. Let’s show that God is in control of our lives and our circumstances and we have nothing to fear!

 

 

Prayer:

 

Lord Jesus, these are very challenging directions in these verses, but thank You for reminding me that the battle is Yours and that You will revenge, if needed. My job is to love through the good times and through the challenging times, to those that love me and to those that hate me. My obligation is to be obedient, in spite of my circumstances, knowing that You have everything under control and that through my obedience You might have another opportunity to minister to that person who means ill towards me. I must be obedient to You, no matter the circumstances that face me in this world, because it is often through the most difficult, or challenging circumstance that an unsaved person might be challenged to look heavenly and find the source behind this Christian’s strength, wisdom, endurance and love. Lord Jesus, in Your name, I ask for this strength, wisdom, endurance and love to be imparted and available to me, because You have already demonstrated this type of love, and You definitely have the authority and power to give it to me. May this all be used for Your glory and Your honor, AMEN!

 

 

NOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray.

Peace in Knowing God

The Bible –The Message

Romans 8:26-28

 26–28       Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

 Thoughts:

There is such peace in these verses! Actually these verses reminds us of the peace we have in knowing God as our personal Savior! When we accept Jesus as our Savior, He provides His Holy Spirit to live inside of us and to commune with God on our behalf. Paul reminds us that even when we are about to give up (tired of waiting), the Holy Spirit is there praying for us. When we have totally run out of words to pray, the Spirit interprets our moans and our groans before the throne on our behalf. In fact, He knows us so well that He is petitioning the throne of grace on our behalf. He has our best interest at heart, and knowing that we really want to step above our weak sinful selves, He keeps us present before God. Friends, as we live our lives loving God, praising Him and glorifying Him, every aspect of our lives is worked into something good, something beautiful for God! Whom then shall I fear? Why then should I worry or complain? There is no god like this God of ours friend! Know Him today and know the peace that surpasses all human understanding. Experience His love that surpasses all other descriptions of love that you can imagine. Know that everything is under control with God in charge of your life, because these verses so vividly reminds you of that. Are you tired of living life under your own power, and would like to know this Jesus of mine in a personal way? I would be honored to work with, and pray for you, if you would drop me an email using the contact information at the very end of this devotional. I would love for you to know this peace that is ours as children of God!

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, how can I say thanks enough for all You do for me? So undeserved, yet You loved me enough that You turned Your world upside down by sacrificing Yourself in humility, all because of Your awesome love, and so that I might have peace in knowing You. Thank You Lord Jesus! Please tender the hearts of those that might read this devotional today and may not have ever invited You to be their Mediator and Lord. Father, I know that they have no control over the time they have left to make such a decision, please may it be today that they allow You to take charge of their life? I humbly ask all this in Your precious and all powerful name, Jesus my Lord and soon coming King, AMEN!

 

Note: **If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray.

Ready Your Heart for Worship!

God’s Word Says….

Psalm 24:3-6 (NCV)

Who may go up on the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in his holy Temple? 4 Only those with clean hands and pure hearts, who have not worshiped idols, who have not made promises in the name of a false god. 5 They will receive a blessing from the Lord; the God who saves them will declare them right. They try to follow God; they look to the God of Jacob for help.

My Thoughts…..

Praise God, His Word is filled with little ‘Nuggets’ that will bless our souls each time that we meditate on it. It is our source document for everything in this life. As we read it, there are certain things that God allows to just stand off the pages and ‘light us up’! Here’s what I got from this ‘Nugget’ referenced above: The question is being asked about who may approach God in His holy place – in His temple. The answer to this is no mystery. Our God is holy, long-suffering, loving and merciful. So who are we to approach Him in any other manner? Think about our worship services. The idea is that God’s people gather to praise Him for all that He has done for us during the past week; petition Him for needs that exist in our lives that, we feel, needs His powerful touch; and to learn from His Word in order that we may portray Him better and to gain strength and direction for the week ahead of us. The verses highlighted today explains how some people walk away from a church service just as empty as they walked in, and yet why some leave overwhelmed with God’s blessing in and through that service. Friends, it’s a matter of where our hearts are. In verse 6, we are told that the blessings were received because they ‘tried to follow God’!

Challenge……

Friends, in our marriages, in our homes, in our work and in our friendships, what we get back is often impacted by what we put into these things. The Psalmist helped me to see that I will be blessed when I ‘Try to follow God’. A doctor or an attorney who wants to be the best at their jobs will find themselves constantly in their books trying to keep up with latest laws or the latest developments in medical science. If we are truly trying to follow God, would it not appear that we should be students of THE Book in order to discern the heart and will of God? Would it not appear that we need to do more than just show up for a worship service, if we truly want to follow God and His teachings? I would dare say friend that we should be doing more than just showing up waiting for a bucket of blessings to be poured on us. I believe God would easily discern those of us that show up with: the Spirit of God very fresh in our spiritual lives; with thankful hearts ready to explode in worship and thanksgiving to God; and like a baby bird waiting for the return of the mother bird with food, God would also discern those of us that show up with a deep hunger to learn more of, and get a better understanding of, His precious Word. Perhaps then, we might approach His holy throne somewhat worthily and ready to worship Him and receive His blessing. Where’s your heart friend? Do you have a heart yearning for more of Jesus, so that you may become more like Him? Do you put effort into following God?

Prayer……

Heavenly Father, You made us to worship You and to be little ‘Christ’s’ so that we may win the world through our love and expression of faith in, and forgiveness by, Your Son Jesus. Lord, we take so much for granted and, many times many of us will just flippantly show up for a worship service assuming that the worship band might stir up a feeling in us, or the preacher might say something magnificent that might stir up something in us. Please forgive me for the times that I have been guilty of this. Unfortunately I received everything from that service that I put into it – nothing. Please give me an urgency and a desire to follow You, and to worship You, and to want to be in Your presence. To portray You in my life, I must be filled with Your Holy Spirit, please guide me in the way of Truth and give me a deeper desire to follow You in every walk of my life. I strongly feel like my friends will need something similar to this today also, please tender their hearts to Your Word so that It may do a powerful work in their lives and better prepare them for Your work. For I ask all this in the name of, and in respect and admiration of You, Oh Lord, my Rock and my redeemer, AMEN!

Action…..

In response to God leading You through this devotional today, please get with a Bible teaching Pastor you may know and allow him to guide you. Otherwise feel free to reply to my post online, or you may email me directly at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. I will gladly add you to my prayer list, and/or respond to your request(s) ASAP.