Preparing To Meet

Anytime we prepare ourselves for meeting with a famous person, we go to great extremes to ‘clean ourselves up’ – going to the hair dresser; purchasing the right apparel for the occasion, etc. Yet, just like the tribes that Hezekiah prayed for, we too go to prayer meetings and church services, perhaps less prepared inwardly and outwardly, than if we were going to the movies. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let’s do so while keeping in mind that we are about to meet with the King of all kings and Lord of all lords.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-03-13
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 30:18–19
Translation: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: 18-19 Many people from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun had not prepared themselves in the right way for the Passover Festival. They did not celebrate the Passover the right way, as the Law of Moses says. But Hezekiah prayed for the people. So he said this prayer, “Lord God, you are good. These people sincerely wanted to worship you in the right way, but they did not make themselves clean as the law says. Please forgive these people. You are the Lord, the God our ancestors worshiped. Forgive them, even if some did not make themselves clean as the rules of the Most Holy Place say.” 

OBSERVATION: Anytime we prepare ourselves for meeting with a famous person, we go to great extremes to ‘clean ourselves up’ – going to the hair dresser; purchasing the right apparel for the occasion, etc. Yet, just like the tribes that Hezekiah prayed for, we too go to prayer meetings and church services, perhaps less prepared inwardly and outwardly, than if we were going to the movies. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let’s do so while keeping in mind that we are about to meet with the King of all kings and Lord of all lords.

APPLICATION:  Ever heard a parent say to their child ‘well if you’re going to the fair with me looking mad and upset, then we may as well stay at home, because you couldn’t possibly have a good time with that attitude’? But don’t we sometimes go to church with a similar attitude? Imagine for a moment if, 30 minutes prior to leaving the house, we were to go before God and lay ourselves before Him and seek His face and ask His forgiveness of our sin, our littleness and our selfishness. Additionally ask God to bless us individually and expand our personal borders so that we might touch the lives of others. Can you possibly dream, or imagine, what our prayer meetings and church services would look like and sound like? Can you imagine the outlook on everyone’s face when they walk out of the sanctuary refreshed in their relationship with God and ready for a week of service in His kingdom work? Rushing to that favorite diner would be the last thing on our minds, instead of the only thing we tend to think on each week! Friend, we will never encounter free, unhindered, personal worship when we depend on the Praise Band to build the excitement and raise the entertainment level so that we may become involved in and excited about worshiping. We can’t build our excitement from what we feel in the band, our excitement builds from all that lies within. If we haven’t cleaned up the ‘junk’ in our lives, how can we possibly go before a ‘HOLY’ and ‘Righteous’ God and expect to be excited about it? Remember, He knows our every deed and thought. When we haven’t cleaned up those things, we go before Him with the same guilt that we would have if we went straight to church from a cocktail party hoping that no one will smell the alcohol on us! God said that we are to be holy, even as He is holy. Why not join me in doing our best to make sure that we go in a prepared way to meet with Him and worship Him this weekend? He would be overjoyed, and we would be blessed beyond measure.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, how ashamed we should be about the important things that we take for granted. We will make time for every meeting we plan to attend or participate in, but somehow we feel like You will show up no matter how little we do in preparation. Forgive us Lord, and help us to really focus on our time with You, for You created us in Your own image and You love us beyond anything we could imagine. Hezekiah prayed for his people who had not prepared themselves to meet with You, may this be a reminder for us that You are holy and therefore we should approach Your throne in a spirit of holiness. This is contrary to the atmosphere in which we live daily and only You could cleanse us and make us worthy of being in Your presence. Lord we beg Your powerful work in our lives, so that we may be effective in all that we do in Your holy 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 highly recommend to you 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!

Emergency Preparations – While You Wait

THE HOLY BIBLE (Contemporary English Version – 2 Peter 3:10-15): 10 The day of the Lord’s return will surprise us like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a loud noise, and the heat will melt the whole universe. Then the earth and everything on it will be seen for what they are. 11 Everything will be destroyed. So you should serve and honor God by the way you live. 12 You should look forward to the day when God judges everyone, and you should try to make it come soon. On that day the heavens will be destroyed by fire, and everything else will melt in the heat. 13 But God has promised us a new heaven and a new earth, where justice will rule. We are really looking forward to that! 14 My friends, while you are waiting, you should make certain that the Lord finds you pure, spotless, and living at peace.
15 Don’t forget that the Lord is patient because he wants people to be saved….

THOUGHTS: Friends, if we were to receive warnings today that a hurricane was approaching the coast of Florida, or perhaps in your case some other natural disaster approaching the area in which you live, don’t you know that everyone will be franticly buying food supplies to see them through a possible time of power outages, or perhaps buying hardware items to help protect earthly belongings? As I read this passage of scripture this morning, I believe God wanted me to share with you a similar warning that He spoke through His New Testament writer to us. For these verses offer warnings to us that our time here on earth is drawing to a close, as this old earth is dissolved away. You see, we are in a time of preparation at this time, for what we do with our time now will determine what happens to us when the events of verse 11 takes place. Note that there is a distinct difference between what happens in the warnings we receive today from meteorologists and what Peter declares in our captioned verses. In the latter, we see no doubt as to what will happen – it is a sure thing that we know in advance, and have time to prepare for its ultimate fruition. When natural disasters are predicted today, there are lists of items available to us that might help us to be better prepared for the impending effects of the disaster. God used a similar format through His servant Peter, and I have bolded the preparation actions that Peter gave to us. Here’s what we are told to do in preparation for the times that will come:

  • Search out Jesus and accept Him as Lord of your life – Yes, I know this is not verbalized in the verses above, but friend there is no way that any of the warnings will be real to you, nor would any of the bolded actions apply to you, if you are not a child of God. You will be the primary objective of Satan, as you are today, and your destination is already set – in the pits of Hell. These preparation items only apply to those who expect to see Jesus, because of firm decisions to accept Him while here on earth;
  • Serve and honor God in the way you live – The joy and peace that’s inside of you will be externalized through the things that you say or do;
  • Live in expectation and excitement about the Day of The Lord – the day of His return – the day He comes to take you with Him!
  • Live pure and spotless before God and at peace with your fellow man – in other words, live as Jesus exampled for us.

Don’t you know that these are items that should be placed prominently before us each day so that we might constantly work on our preparation list for that great and wonderful day? Can you say today, even so Lord Jesus, come today? You should be in that kind of state of readiness friend, because it could be today that He will return to take His bride away with Him! I would love to help you make sure that you are ready for the events referred to in this devotional, please read my ‘Footnote’ and feel free to contact me if there is anything that you would allow me to help you with.

PRAYER: Thank You for the warnings Heavenly Father. The information shared in these verses today are way more critical than any report we might receive from our meteorologists this season. Please help us to take our preparation time very seriously, and ready ourselves for that great day of happy reunion with You in heaven. Help us to be busy in firming up our preparation plans and stand in a state of readiness for Your soon return. What a day that will be when my Jesus I shall see, when I look upon His face…. This is an exciting day that Christians live in anticipation of! Lord, may we not disappoint You in any of the things we might say or do as we live our lives this side of heaven, for we know that our words and actions will reflect the one who controls us. I pray that all of my readers can say without a doubt that greater is He that is in us than He that is in this old sinful world! It’s You I live for, everyday oh God. Fill me with Your joy, love, hope and happiness. For I ask all this in the strong name of Jesus, AMEN!

 

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