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

Archive for the ‘Power’ Category

God’s Power Expressed Through Our Weakness

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Corinthians 12:7-9 (TPT)

TEXT: 7 …..  this is why a thorn in my flesh was given to me, the Adversary’s messenger sent to harass me, keeping me from becoming arrogant. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to relieve me of this. But he answered me, “My grace is always more than enough for you, and my power finds its full expression through your weakness.” So I will celebrate my weaknesses, for when I’m weak I sense more deeply the mighty power of Christ living in me.

OBSERVATION:   I believe that Paul cleared up one thing for us in this passage. There are limitation to our abilities, and those around us know what those limitations are. When something more powerful is achieved, everyone will know that either we had additional training since they last saw us, or it really is another power within us that accomplished the miraculous work they just saw. This is still applicable to us today with all the technological advances, but God doesn’t need any help proving who He is, nor is He concerned about the abilities of the one through who He chooses to work. Let’s study this some more!

APPLICATION:   Can you imagine how easily Paul could have taken credit for some of the miraculous things that happened during his ministry and projected himself as one with super powers? The miraculous opening of the prison gates; the shipwrecks; to name just a few. But friends we must remember the miraculous turn around that Jesus accomplished through this servant right at the very beginning, for he (Saul) operated as a persecutor of Christians, until Jesus opened his eyes of faith to the actual truth of the gospel and the full power of God. I believe that Paul opened our eyes to a few things:

  1. God calls us to be His servant, meaning that He will tell us what to do, how to do it and when to do it. Let’s not get ahead of Him and do our own thing and then ask God to bless what we did. It just doesn’t work that way. Remember, He is God and we are the servant through whom He may choose to work, not the other way around;
  2. Never complain about what God might put us through, as it might be for His glory, and for others to see God at work, even through someone with a ‘thorn in their side’. Furthermore if the work of the gospel is completed even while we might be physically unable to, then unbelievers must ask themselves, ‘so who do it then?’
  3. Never question the work that God sends us to do, for as we surrender to Him all that, you feel, might be inadequate and untrained, imagine who the people will see as the one doing the work?

Friends, as we make ourselves available to be God’s servant, it must be with the attitude that His grace, or His power, will rule and reign in the eyes and hearts of those we stand in front of, so that He may be glorified. If God is glorified, our hearts and lives can live at peace knowing that our focus was on target. Know that as long as we reside on this earth, we will face challenges and hardships, but always be reminded of verse 9, the words to Paul, that are still very applicable to us today: my grace is sufficient for all your needs my child! Yes, because of His grace, and through His power, we can do all things for the glory of the Father!

PRAYER:   Lord I believe that many times it may only be through our weaknesses that You truly get our attention. We are such a stubborn people, striving always to be independent and do things our way and on our own. Please help us to take a step in humility and surrender, so that we can truly become faithful servants of Yours that You will find worthy of using in Your kingdom work. Lord, may they see Jesus in all that we do or say. 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!

 

Our Strength and Our Guide

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-11-03
SCRIPTURE

From:

2 Timothy 1:7-8a (ERV)

Text:

The Spirit God gave us does not make us afraid. His Spirit is a source of power and love and self-control.

So don’t be ashamed to tell people about our Lord Jesus.

OBSERVATION:
Paul was mentoring his son in the faith, Timothy, and doing everything possible to warn him about situations he would possibly face as he entered his mission field. To face the challenges, Paul found it important to remind Timothy who his ‘support arm’; ‘encourager’; ‘strength’ and ‘guide’ would be. Perhaps we need to be reminded of this as we enter each day and face the many challenges that await us!
APPLICATION:
There are probably two or more types of people today. Those who face each day with vigor and vitality, knowing that they have been given another opportunity to bless others and celebrate God. While the other group probably moans over the mistakes of yesterday and can’t imagine how much worse it will be today in their world. Friends, we are reminded in the Scripture today that God’s Holy Spirit resides inside those of us that have surrendered our lives to His lordship, and that we have nothing to be afraid of. Through Paul, God is reminding us that His Holy Spirit:

  1. Does not make us afraid – This makes me think that any fear that arises must be Satan’s way of trying to discourage or weaken our determination;
  2. Source of power – We are reminded that our weaknesses mean nothing, compared to the power source that we have in the Lord Jesus Christ. When we tend to worry about how certain things will be accomplished, let’s remind ourselves whose power is supporting us!
  3. Love – Knowing that we are loved by the Creator and King of this universe, gives us encouragement to do our best, to not be afraid and to face each day knowing that God has everything under His control. God loves us way too much to see us plunder through life in doubt or without hope;
  4. Self-Control – Buried deep inside of us is the old self that is bursting to expose itself at every opportunity. However, we are reminded that God’s Holy Spirit provides us with self-control. I tend to think of that as keeping the ‘old self’ under submission, and allowing the Spirit to expose us in the light of Jesus Christ. We should always have a desire to have others see Jesus in us! An old preacher had a reminder note stuck to his pulpit “Oh that they might see Jesus”. I pray that often, because I want to be used by Jesus in His ministry. Let them look at me but see Jesus in all that I do or say.
PRAYER:
Thank You Father for Your Holy Spirit. You knew from the very beginning that we could not live in this world under our own strength and still win over the ills of Satan. You have blessed us with power, love, self-control and bravery to not be afraid in this world, for You are with us in every way. What a joy and oh what peace, to know that our Savior is also our Master and Lord. We need your strength each day Lord, please help us to represent You in every part of our character. 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!

When Your Back’s ‘Against The Wall’

Saturday, 2016-09-10

Scripture

Bible Reference: 2 Kings 6:15–18

Bible Text: 15 When the servant of the man of God got up early the next morning and went outside, there were troops, horses, and chariots everywhere. “Oh, sir, what will we do now?” the young man cried to Elisha. 16 “Don’t be afraid!” Elisha told him. “For there are more on our side than on theirs!” 17 Then Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes and let him see!” The LORD opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire. 18 As the Aramean army advanced toward him, Elisha prayed, “O LORD, please make them blind.” So the LORD struck them with blindness as Elisha had asked.

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

A Lot of times we do everything we can about a circumstance, and we may even gain the help of others to help us resolve the issue, but there are times when nothing seems to work and we just don’t know what else to do. I believe the saying “you just feel like you are between a rock and a hard place” truly explains your dilemma. In our verses today, we can see where the servant of the man of God was really in a panic and may have felt like described above. However, the man of God knew that there was a whole lot more to the story, because He knew who really held the answers and he knew, from experience, that there was nothing too difficult for his God. I believe you can see from the story that one may have known about God, but one actually knew God personally, and had one-on-one experience with the God of this universe. Friends, as you consider/meditate on these verses today, may I encourage you to choose and pursue the one whom you will serve? And as you choose, please note that a very personal and daily relationship is very important, for how will you know what your Father is capable of unless you spend time with Him; obey His commands to show that you respect His leadership in your life; seek Him in conversation (prayer) often – little and big challenges of life, so that You would grow confident in His mighty works and His awesome power; and trust Him wholeheartedly in all things – even when His direction may seem impossible to you, (Like in this story with Elisha and his servant boy). Having your back ‘against the wall’ just means that you have done everything you can, and now it’s time for God to take over. This is an everyday occurrence for most of us, because we are often faced with challenges that we know absolutely nothing about how to handle it, or the possible outcome. Friends, there is no god like our God! Rejoice in that proven fact today and praise Him even in your storms of life and the greatest impossibilities – at least in your eyes.

Prayer

Father, You are GREAT and greatly to be praised! There are so many miracles in Your Word that proves to us Your awesome power and greatness, and we especially thank You for this miracle through Your servant Elisha. Yet one more reminder of You performing the impossible (at least in man’s eyes) in order to protect Your servant and display to the unsaved who is really in charge of this whole earthly operation! Lord, You are well aware of our many challenges today, and I thank You sincerely for the ways that You have displayed Your glory in such miraculous ways for us. Lord, we want our loved ones to know You, so if that includes working miraculously so they could witness Your power, then we stand waiting for You to work  – even if You do it through us. May You be glorified today by those who know You, and may You be recognized by those who need to know You. Please use us as Your humble servants to accomplish Your will, if desired by You. I love You Lord, AMEN!

Footnote

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

Who Is In Charge?

THE HOLY BIBLE (Easy-to-Read Version – Romans 6:12-14): 12 But don’t let sin control your life here on earth. You must not be ruled by the things your sinful self makes you want to do. 13 Don’t offer the parts of your body to serve sin. Don’t use your bodies to do evil, but offer yourselves to God, as people who have died and now live. Offer the parts of your body to God to be used for doing good. 14 Sin will not be your master, because you are not under law. You now live under God’s grace.

THOUGHTS: I believe that the subject question is often asked in life, and quite often it is asked of married couples. I would like to challenge us to think about this question on a more regular basis – to help us evaluate whether we have given full control of our life to God, or whether we still allow sin to filtrate and wrongly impact our lives. I believe it would be a challenging exercise for us to reflect on our day and evaluate whether our actions and our words were God-inspired or sinful. In fact, won’t it be challenging for us to write down throughout our day each of our actions and the overall theme of our conversations, then at the end of the day place an indicator beside each whether it was of God – remembering that if it wasn’t then it could very well have been of our ‘old sinful self’? As Christians, we are to surrender our lives to Christ, and strive to be more like Him in every way. A life not fully surrendered will easily follow what it was – its old sinful self. I believe that since our natural life is swayed so heavily by sin, that the Christian life is a very intentional and surrendered life. We must surrender our own sinful self-will and allow God to take control. It is only then that we will allow Him to be our Master, and to guide us and use us in ways that will be pleasing and honoring to Him. God has ultimate power over every aspect of our lives, including sin, however He will not overstep our personal will and desire. I believe that it is critical for us to quickly recognize when sin is controlling us and even more critical for us to quickly approach the throne and ask God to assume, or resume control of our lives and be our Master and Lord. A fully surrendered life is one that God desires of us – are you there yet?

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for being such a strong and awesome God. Thank You for teaching us how to identify sin and how to seek Your help in overcoming and/or avoiding sin. It is so critical that You assume full control of our lives, otherwise we quickly fall back into a life of sin. As Christians, You have already rescued us from that life, so please patiently work on us to fully surrender ourselves to You and to wait on You as You mold us and use us for Your glory. Please give us wisdom and strength to stay focused on You and to stay clear of the sin that once held us captive. For those who have not accepted You as Lord, I pray that again today You might soften their hearts and show them Your power. Only You have the power to help us overcome sin and stay focused on You. We want to do just that today Father, but we can only do that through Your strength and with Your direction and power. All this I ask in the precious name of Jesus, Your Son and my Savior, AMEN!

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

God’s Grace is All You Need!

The Holy Bible

7 So that I would not become too proud of the wonderful things that were shown to me, a painful physical problem was given to me. This problem was a messenger from Satan, sent to beat me and keep me from being too proud. 8 I begged the Lord three times to take this problem away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you.” So I am very happy to brag about my weaknesses. Then Christ’s power can live in me.

(Bible Translation and Location: New Century Version – 2 Corinthians 12:7-9)

Thoughts:

How often do we stand before our mighty and powerful God and question Him about all that is allowing to happen in our lives, and in the lives of His holy children? But wait a minute, isn’t that questioning the ways of God, the reasoning behind His decisions, His perfect will and design for us? I found it very humbling to be reminded of what Paul said in this scripture today, because I believe that God patiently waits for us to get over ourselves and totally surrender to Him so that He may actually have a chance to prove Himself to us. Friends, when we accept Jesus as Lord and King of our lives, it’s not for the purpose of a security blanket, although we are very secure in the blanket of His arms around us and the warmth of His love for us. Instead, we actually enter into a Father and son/daughter relationship with Him. Let’s remember that when we are totally surrendered to God and open to His powerful hand upon us, He can then have the freedom to bless us in ways that we would never have imagined or asked for. Friends, I was reminded that instead of beating my head against the wall when everything around me is collapsing and spinning out of my control, I need to remember that God’s grace is enough for me and through that weakness/trial/temptation, His mighty hand is still in charge and needing to take control of my situation. Oh that we can learn to surrender ourselves to Him much sooner than later! When we consider the pride we (dads) have when we see our children succeed and do well, to a great part because of our love and persistence in their lives, I cannot begin to imagine how proud God must be of His children who takes full advantage of His grace, His love and His instructions to live more noble and praiseworthy lives – the way that He designed us to be, and rejoice in seeing every day. So if our Father has full control, and loves us enough to have sent His only Son for our redemption, tell me again what might cause us to be down in the mouth and depressed in our souls? We are blessed beyond all words friends, let’s act that way and praise God with that in mind!

Prayer:

Dear Lord, please continue to impress upon us the need to live like Your blessed and admired children! We are covered by the sacrifice You made for us and the invitation we accepted to allow Your grace into our lives. We are loved enough that warranted You sacrificing Jesus so that we might live eternally with You. Oh that we may ‘get it’. The fact that we are blessed and loved children of the Almighty God! Lord, may Your power become perfect in us today, so that we may go on to be powerful ambassadors for You, is my prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Savior, 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!

Nothing We Say Overrides The Power of the Cross

The Bible The Amplified Bible

1 Corinthians 1:1719

17 For Christ (the Messiah) sent me out not to baptize but [to evangelize by] preaching the glad tidings (the Gospel), and that not with verbal eloquence, lest the cross of Christ should be deprived of force and emptied of its power and rendered vain (fruitless, void of value, and of no effect).

18 For the story and message of the cross is sheer absurdity and folly to those who are perishing and on their way to perdition, but to us who are being saved it is the [manifestation of] the power of God.

19 For it is written, I will baffle and render useless and destroy the learning of the learned and the philosophy of the philosophers and the cleverness of the clever and the discernment of the discerning; I will frustrate and nullify [them] and bring [them] to nothing. [Isa. 29:14.]

Thoughts:

Thank God for seminaries and dedicated theologians who teach and counsel our pastors. But I am most thankful for the intervention of the God of this universe sending His Holy Spirit to dwell among men and to impact our lives daily. I am amazed how God is able to use the uneducated and especially those having graduated from seminary. As I said, I am thankful for our seminaries, so I have nothing against them, but a person filled with head knowledge but who refuses to call on God for help in delivering His message is totally missing the point, and therefore much of their preaching is in vain. Friends, I know that all seminary graduates do not fall into the same box, so I am not condemning them. However, we must all remember that the Word of God is worthless without the power of God and the presence of God. For without God, we speak mere words of man, and it is only through the Word of God and His mighty hand that man is saved, or hardened hearts are touched. In fact, when we stand before a crowd and attempt to preach or teach without inviting God to direct us and fill us with His words and His wisdom, we are assuming that our knowledge is greater than the power of the cross of Jesus Christ. Friends, we are truly wasting our time and making a mockery of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we meet (supposedly in His name) yet deliberately leave Him out of our meeting and not totally depend on His mighty hand. To our pastors, preachers, evangelists and teachers, please be encouraged that you can’t do the preaching or teaching on your own. Yes, you are capable, but why open your mouths and speak empty words that can’t possibly touch the heart of man? Please allow God His rightful place as Commander-In-Chief of worship services dedicated to Him. Please allow Him to use you in spreading His Word to His people that need Him so badly. Friends, we have a responsibility to pray for our pastors and teachers. We need a word from The Lord when we go to our worship services. Words from mere man is a waste of our time, so let us pray earnestly for the hand of God to work actively through the man of God that stands before us each week. God could demand even the stones to speak, so as we pray let us do it in confidence that He could speak through His messenger in ways and with the words that will touch, uplift, encourage and challenge our hearts.

Prayer:

Lord, to mere man this whole passage of Scripture must seem very fictional, but to the believer in Jesus Christ who knows Your power and have read about and seen your mighty works in action, we humbly pray that You would work very powerfully in the hearts and lives of our pastors and teachers this week, so that as we gather in Your name, we would receive a word from You. Please humble the hearts of the educated, and please uplift the uneducated, so that as they stand before your people this week, they will each depend solely on the power of the Almighty to do His good work among His people gathered together. Lord, as we strive daily to live for You and like You intended, we are constantly marred by Satan and his evil followers in this world. Please forgive us for our weaknesses and encourage us to draw even closer to You so the power within us might always be greater than the power in this old world. Jesus, we depend heavily on You daily, please forgive us of our sinful attitudes and desires and strengthen us to do Your will, and this I humbly pray in Your name, knowing that only You can grant this, 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.

Be Completely United

The Bible – The Good news Translation

1 Corinthians 1:10

10 By the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ I appeal to all of you, my brothers and sisters, to agree in what you say, so that there will be no divisions among you. Be completely united, with only one thought and one purpose.

Thoughts:

I bet that as you read the above verse you may have thought that it was something that I came up with concerning your church, or perhaps telling you gossip from my church, right? I agree with you friends, however this is obviously one of those verses that Christians today throw over their shoulders and let it go on to apply to the church on the next block for whom it was truly written!! In our secular jobs we often remark that the most challenging part of our job is dealing with the people/staff. I would imagine that for our pastors the most challenging part of leading a small, or a large church is the same – dealing with the folk who cause upheaval that could quickly lead to division. Paul addressed two important areas that we should consider as we think about what we might do to prevent division:

  1. To agree in what you say – I believe that if we did like one pastor suggested when he said “Let the main thing be the main thing” then we would quickly refocus our minds, and subsequently our conversation, to the mighty works of God among the congregation; the Word of God that speaks to us in powerful ways today, as it did in the days we read about in the Word; the blessings that God has bestowed on us instead of the small aches and pains that we might feel; the great teachers that God has provided to share knowledge with us instead of the small insignificant, humanly faults they may have; and the heartfelt desire to see our family members saved; and
  2. Be completely united – Do you know what happens in marriages when a husband and wife cannot be completely united in one thought and purpose? Don’t you imagine that the same thing would happen if we bring that type of behavior into the church? Independent thinking is important friend, but in a heart of compassion and love and caring about the good of others, we must learn to be understanding, appreciative and patient in what others have to say also. We are not all at the same maturity level, so sometimes we will find that someone else may have a different idea about a topic than we do. They may not be wrong – in fact they may be trying to say the same things as you are saying, just using different terminology. We must learn to not only talk, but also to listen, and try to appreciate the heart of the person speaking.

I heard a preacher approach this subject recently and he advised that should a third party be brought up in a conversation you are having with another church member, stop the conversation until such time that the other party could join you in the conversation! Great advice to avoid the issues that Paul was addressing with the Corinthian church, and to help with the unity of our churches today! These are tips on how we can help keep unity in our church today, are you willing to do your part friend? Let’s ask God for the strength to do His will, even in our relationships with others who should know better!

Prayer:

Lord, thank You for Your patience with Your people as we try to get along here on this earth and live in such a way that we would be a witness of You to our lost family and friends. Lord, please remind us often that we will never impact the lost when we act just like them. If we are different, and if we belong to the King of Love, the King of compassion and the King of all Kings then it is time for us to leave the things of this world behind and center our hearts and minds on You, and not our personal desires and selfish ways. More of You in this old world will force out the ways of Satan that has become so prevalent, even among Christians. Please have Your will in my life dear Lord, and may my friends also see the need for a similar prayer today, is my humble plea, that I ask in the precious name of Jesus, my Lord and Savior, 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.

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