Your Heart Determines The Course of Your Life

From deep within our heart, words spew from our mouths, and actions that may either make us proud, or ashamed, when we stand before the Master of this universe. God knew this would happen, so in His Word He warned us to be careful of what we allow into our lives. With so much emphasis on the things of this world bombarding us every day, we must stop and analyze how we are doing in this critical aspect of our lives.

Tuesday, 2019-04-02

Bible Reference: Proverbs 4:20-22
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: ^20 My child, pay attention to what I say. Listen carefully to my words. 21 Don’t lose sight of them. Let them penetrate deep into your heart, 22 for they bring life to those who find them, and healing to their whole body. 23 Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.

OBSERVATION: From deep within our heart, words spew from our mouths, and actions that may either make us proud, or ashamed, when we stand before the Master of this universe. God knew this would happen, so in His Word He warned us to be careful of what we allow into our lives. With so much emphasis on the things of this world bombarding us every day, we must stop and analyze how we are doing in this critical aspect of our lives.

APPLICATION: There are sayings that we hear from time to time that are aligned with this Scripture today: ‘from the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks’; ‘garbage in, garbage out’; ‘actions speak louder than words’; etc. Each of these sayings indicate that you could expect no better from a person than what is bottled up inside of their heart. So from where is the heart ‘fed’? Allow me to suggest that hanging around a bar will feed your mind, soul and heart with things that the frequent attenders say; the way they act; and the priorities they display while in your presence. Spending 8+ hours per day around your coworkers, will influence your life with certain attributes of theirs, and you will find yourself with some of their words and/or behavior. Spending many hours around God’s people at church or church events, will do the same as already shared. Studying God’s Word and allowing it to saturate your mind and your heart, will draw you closer to God, and will energize you to follow His instructions and share His goodness that becomes more and more obvious as you learn more about Him. Friends, it is very obvious that we are influenced by those we spend time with, or have a desire to imitate. So I believe the key takeaway in this devotional today, is that we evaluate what our priorities are. That we stop making excuses and strive for the image of God to be displayed through us. Never fool yourself into telling someone the lie that you just didn’t have time for something that really should take a precedence in your day. Try replacing the words ‘I didn’t have time’ with ‘it just wasn’t a priority for me’. Consider time with the Lord – imagine telling God at the end of the day that you are very sorry, but spending time in His Word, and in prayer to Him, just was not a priority. Friends, we choose what we will do. You may have chosen to sleep in, or go to the gym, or have breakfast with the guys during the time that you had set aside for a devotional time with God. However, if it was really a priority in your life, imagine how you would have moved things around to accommodate. So let me encourage you today to prioritize what goes into your heart. Fill it with the goodness of the Lord, and the awesome promise of His return. Can you imagine what will come out of you in words and actions? Can you imagine how God will be glorified? It’s all up to you my friend!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, may our hearts be so filled with You and Your goodness, that our whole outlook on life will change, and others who cross our paths will be infected by Your love being extended through us. Oh that You might be lifted up because of all that You will accomplish through us today, for this is my humble prayer and sincere plea, oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. 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!

Never Lonely, For God is Present

Psalm 23 is probably one of the best known, most often read psalms, but I wonder how often we stop to really meditate on the words of this wonderful Psalm of David. It is still very applicable to us today, especially in the words of verse 4. For we constantly stand in fear of something, or someone. Yet if we could only assume the confidence of David and talk to our Master about our concerns, and remind ourselves of His ever present help in our time of need, imagine how comforting that would be! Let’s look deeper into this today….

Saturday, 2019-03-30

Bible Reference: Psalm 23:4
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: Lord, even when your path takes me through the valley of deepest darkness, fear will never conquer me, for you already have! You remain close to me and lead me through it all the way. Your authority is my strength and my peace. The comfort of your love takes away my fear. I’ll never be lonely, for you are near.

OBSERVATION: Psalm 23 is probably one of the best known, most often read psalms, but I wonder how often we stop to really meditate on the words of this wonderful Psalm of David. It is still very applicable to us today, especially in the words of verse 4. For we constantly stand in fear of something, or someone. Yet if we could only assume the confidence of David and talk to our Master about our concerns, and remind ourselves of His ever present help in our time of need, imagine how comforting that would be! Let’s look deeper into this today….

APPLICATION: Not sure if anyone lives without fear today, but in the world I know and experience, there’s a great fear factor in every aspect of life. Think about it friends, we arise each morning and check our surroundings to see if anyone came around during the night to break-in or steal anything. We head off to work and we are in super vigilant mode to make sure that other drivers on the road are being careful and will not hit us. We arrived at work and carefully survey the area before attempting to enter our place of business, for fear that someone might be lurking to follow us in. Throughout the day we are in fear of an armed robbery, or perhaps afraid that the boss might have a plant in our area reporting our activity to try and have us fired. OK, you are probably wondering why am I so paranoid, but hopefully you got my point and understand that we would have to be in a very desolate place or marooned on an island for us to possibly be free of fear in some way throughout our day. David had even greater reasons to fear, for he was chased and forced into battle on many occasions through his reign as king. But I want our key verse to remind us, just as David found, that regardless of what is going on around us, or no matter who might be out to get us, if we have Jesus we have everything. For He is a constant friend, who has no ulterior motives in loving us passionately and in spite of our failures. In another translation, 4b reads: ‘Your rod [to protect] and Your staff [to guide], they comfort and console me.’ Is it interesting how we tend to think of a rod as a punishment tool, yet with reference to the ‘rod’ we are told that God uses it to protect us and to guide us! How reassuring is that? When you feel like you know not where to turn next, or who to trust in seeking help with that, imagine and remember that we have an ultimate friend – a constant guide; One who sticks closer than a brother; One who knows what the future holds, and as we trust in Him, He will guide us through the circumstances that make up tomorrow. He’s my friend, and I hope and pray that you have also placed your faith and trust in Him. We are reassured of His endless love and His ongoing guidance right until the very end!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for the reassurance that You will protect, guide and love us until the end of time. Please speak to those who fear about things in this life, convince them of Your power and Your desire to guide us through all aspects of this life. Lord speak to the hearts of those who are hopeless, because they don’t know You personally. May this be the day of decision for them. 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!

Things That Cause Us To Deny Christ

Many will read the theme/subject and immediately answer ‘Nothing, of course’. However, in our Scripture today Jesus actually told Peter and his fellow disciples that they would deny Him. These guys had some very intimate and powerful times with Jesus, and still, under pressure, they denied Him. I wonder what would cause us to deny Jesus?

Friday, 2019-03-28

Bible Reference: Matthew 26:33-35
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: ^33 Then Peter spoke up and said, “Even if all the rest lose their faith and fall away, I will still be beside you, Jesus!”34 “Are you sure, Peter?” Jesus said. “In fact, before the rooster crows a few hours from now, you will have denied me three times.”35 Peter replied, “I absolutely will never deny you, even if I have to die with you!” And all the others said the same thing.

OBSERVATION: Many will read the theme/subject and immediately answer ‘Nothing, of course’. However, in our Scripture today Jesus actually told Peter and his fellow disciples that they would deny Him. These guys had some very intimate and powerful times with Jesus, and still, under pressure, they denied Him. I wonder what would cause us to deny Jesus?

APPLICATION: Standing before Jesus, Peter was sure that he would never lose his faith in him, nor turn his back on Him. In fact, Peter was convinced that he would always be true to his Master. Now, imagine us standing within the 4 walls of our respective churches. It may have been an exciting service, where we may have heard testimonies of the active, healing power of God in a son’s life, or the saving grace of that daughter that never wanted anything to do with God. The singing led by the praise team may have been heart warming and really served to draw you close to the Savior. You are on ‘cloud nine’ spiritually, and there is nothing that you wouldn’t consider doing ,or saying, in the name of your personal, relational Savior and Lord. Then the moment of truth arrives, you walk outside the doors of the church and into a world that is torn apart by the advisory. Some might tease, or mock, you for attending church, instead of joining them at the baseball game. Some might try to help you understand why your financial resources are limited, seeing that you give so much towards the expenses of your already flourishing church. Some might get in your face about the number of times last week that you chose to attend yet another church service, instead of joining your ‘real’ friends at the pub. Knowing how real most of these circumstance are, do you suppose that’s why we often keep our mouths shut about the exciting church service we attended, or the sweet answers to prayer that blessed our souls, or the sweet personal relationship that we have with the Creator of this universe? Do you suppose these types of intimidation might contribute to the lack of sharing with our friends, or the bragging about the relational highs that we encountered with our Lord? But what would you say to God when He tells you that because of missed opportunities, those friends of yours went to Hell, because no one cared enough to tell them of a better place, or a loyal and faithful Friend who loved them enough to die a cruel death – for the sake of their salvation? What would you say to the spouse or child of that friend who was just murdered at one of his drinking parties by someone he thought was a good friend? After all, you had the keys to a better life. You had experienced the Master, and His awesome love, that reaches beyond all earthly boundaries that we seem to find ourselves entrapped by, yet you never shared that with your friend. Child of God, let me encourage you today to make the most of every possible moment you have, to share the love of Christ with those that you encounter. It doesn’t matter if you’re at school, at work, in the grocery store or at home. If you know Jesus, and you have experienced the love of Christ, and are being blessed by the joy of your salvation, then ask God to help you share that with the one that He appoints for you to meet with today. It may be their last opportunity to learn about God from a real friend who cares about them. And it may be your last opportunity to share with them before they are snatched away from this earth. With Jesus as their Savior, their eternal destination would be secured in heaven. Without Jesus, they are destined for the pit of Hell where Satan will be their eternal destroyer with endless sadness, pain, hatred, and unending damnation. You and I could make a difference in their lives today, God being our helper.

PRAYER: Just as You sent a messenger of hope to help lead us to You oh Lord, I pray that today You will point out those that we need to encourage; those that need to see the love of Jesus in and through our lives; those who need to know that Jesus died for them also, and those who are entrenched in sin. Lord, I am convinced that they need Jesus. Oh that they would surrender their lives to be cleansed and accepted by the Holy and precious Son of God. Father, we have no assurance of tomorrow here on this earth, so please work a miracle in lives today, so that others may actually see Jesus in our words and actions, and that their hearts my feel the desperation of needing to surrender their lives to You. May Your will be done today oh Lord, and if You can use us to help facilitate evidence of that to our friends and coworkers, we would be eternally grateful. 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!

The Word of God is Powerful and Profitable

Many of us may be more like the servant who buried the talent entrusted to him, instead of investing it. For some of us are not prepared to take the risk of investing gifts given to us – be it monetary, physical, or even special abilities, because we tend to dwell on the negative possibilities instead of the benefits. In our Scripture, God showed us how beneficial the rain and snow is, and then goes on to compare that to His Word and how it will always come back with positive results. Are you willing to risk sharing God’s Word, after knowing its power to how profitable it is?

Tuesday, 2019-03-26

Bible Reference: Isaiah 55:10-11
Translation: GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Bible Text: 10 “Rain and snow come down from the sky. They do not go back again until they water the earth. They make it sprout and grow so that it produces seed for farmers and food for people to eat. 11 My word, which comes from my mouth, is like the rain and snow. It will not come back to me without results. It will accomplish whatever I want and achieve whatever I send it to do.”

OBSERVATION: Many of us may be more like the servant who buried the talent entrusted to him, instead of investing it. For some of us are not prepared to take the risk of investing gifts given to us – be it monetary, physical, or even special abilities, because we tend to dwell on the negative possibilities instead of the benefits. In our Scripture, God showed us how beneficial the rain and snow is, and then goes on to compare that to His Word and how it will always come back with positive results. Are you willing to risk sharing God’s Word, after knowing its power to how profitable it is?

APPLICATION: Investors will tell you that there are certain investments where your savings will double over time, because of the excellent history of returns and their future prospects. To illustrate the awesome return on sharing His Word, God chose to use the example of snow and rain. We often hear of the devastation of too much rain or snow, and way too often we tend to get hung up on that. However, God illustrated the wonderful advantages of these two elements, for the earth is watered and the plants are given this pure, natural element that they need in order to grow. I thought of another advantage also, because during a visit to Arizona some years ago, I was told about the years of drought often encountered there in the dessert. However, that has never really an issue, because they always had enough water – in fact a river that flows through the middle of Scottsdale, always has plenty of water! Now get this: it’s a manmade river that gets its supply of water from melting snow from the surrounding mountains! People tend to grumble when snow interferes with their daily responsibilities, but God is saying just wait a few days or weeks, I’m providing something very necessary for my people in the towns down-stream! God likened this to His fertile words. He foreknew how many of us will mess up so badly by sharing our own, empty, words with hopes of impressing someone about our Lord. So God gave us His own words in the form of a book – the Bible. I believe He showed us that these words are not only powerful and profitable, but they have already been proven. Think about it friends, there is no other reasonable explanation why simple words from the mouth of a pastor, or fellow Christian could impact the hardened criminal in prison who, in spite of his evil deeds, suddenly sees and understands that Jesus died, so that he might have eternal life and join us fellow believers around the throne as ones cleansed by the blood of Jesus. There’s no need to recreate the words necessary to present to the sinner, for God’s Word is perfect, it is powerful, and it will not return to Him void. May I encourage you to read the Word of God daily; allow it to wash your soul first and foremost, before trying to apply it to all those around you; then share it with others. There is a gospel song with words like this: Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Click the link and allow the words of this song to bathe your soul, while drawing you closer to the Master. Soak in the Word friends, so that it might overflow from your lips at just the right times, for the benefit of the Kingdom!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, Your Word is a light unto my path, for it directs me daily and warms my heart with encouragement from a Savior who loves me enough that You sacrificed Your very life so that I might see heaven one day. I am convinced that people need the Lord – those in my neighborhood; in my church; in my city; my state and yes, especially in my country. Use me Lord to not only be an example in their midst, but fill me with Your Word so that Your words might flow freely from my heart through my lips. Oh that You may rule and reign in my town today dear Lord. Please humble each and every reader today, so that they may desire more of You. May we all be filled to overflowing, so that the words of our mouths and the fellowship of our hearts may be acceptable to You, our Lord and our Redeemer. 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!

From The Abundance of the Heart, The Mouth Speaks

I’m sure that most of my readers will read the above, and if they don’t know the scriptures, they are probably wondering which local church, or group of people, might Jesus be referring to. I wonder what forms of testing (in our minds) might we look for when we observe others who claim to be ‘Christian’. What if we used the same methodology as Jesus did, will anyone make it to heaven in our judgment of them today? How do you suppose you and I might fear in His eyes, would we make it?

Saturday, 2019-03-23

Bible Reference: Matthew 25:42-43
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 42 For when you saw me hungry, you refused to give me food, and when you saw me thirsty, you refused to give me something to drink.43 I had no place to stay, and you refused to take me in as your guest. When you saw me poorly clothed, you closed your hearts and would not cover me. When you saw that I was sick, you didn’t lift a finger to help me, and when I was imprisoned, you never came to visit me.’

OBSERVATION: I’m sure that most of my readers will read the above, and if they don’t know the scriptures, they are probably wondering which local church, or group of people, might Jesus be referring to. I wonder what forms of testing (in our minds) might we look for when we observe others who claim to be ‘Christian’. What if we used the same methodology as Jesus did, will anyone make it to heaven in our judgment of them today? How do you suppose you and I might fear in His eyes, would we make it?

APPLICATION: There is an old saying that has long been quoted based on what we hear words come from an honest man’s mouth: ‘from the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks’. I believe that Jesus is saying that there are attributes about our life that are strong indicators about whose we are. It’s a very sobering and frightful thought, because it seems like we are part of a world where most of us look to meet our own needs, our own wants, our own timelines, our fast-paced, very programmed, full scheduled, selfish world, where helping others are often excluded. All too often we tend to leave it up to the government, or the church, or the pastor, or perhaps family to care for those who are broken, or in need of a hand-up. But did you notice how Jesus never referred to the fact that we should give, so our church could help those in need, or we should vote, so we could make sure that our government helps, even though these are two areas in most countries that will help those in need? Friends, I believe that the intent of Jesus here, is to help us to understand that these are ways that a heart filled with Jesus, would express itself. Look again at the ways that Jesus illustrated this to us: (a) Feed those that are hungry – I heard of someone who took a team to serve meals to the hungry who had come in off the street looking for food. They were so humbled, that it had a serious impact on their lives. When last have we stopped to even chat with a person who hadn’t eaten in 24 hours, or perhaps turned around and purchased a meal to take back for them? Do you suppose that Jesus would do something like that? (b) Those that are thirsty – although similar to (a), yet slightly different. You find yourself thirsty, yet you pass by someone along the road waiting for food or a ride to somewhere. You see their lips parched, but still you drive on by after making many judgment calls on why they are in that position. Would Jesus have gone the extra mile to get them a drink? (c) In need of shelter – you have several rooms that are now unused in your home, but isn’t it virtually impossible to apply the brakes on your car and invite a homeless person to spend the night at your place? I believe that we have even become too selfish to house visiting preachers or evangelists. After all, why should I do that when no one else even considers it? What do you suppose Jesus would do in either of these circumstances? (d) In need of clothes – Many thrift stores will sell pieces of clothing for a quarter most days, because so much has been donated to relieve overcrowding in the closets of the ‘rich and famous’. But I wonder if perhaps Jesus was pointing out that a heart that looks like His would actually see a need, and humbly meet that need for clothing. Yes, you could send them, or take them to the Thrift store, but when last have you passed by someone in need and actually went out of your way to fulfill that need without being asked to? (e) Sick and in need of help – A Christian’s mind is relieved by saying that he would pray for that sick one. And that is commendable, if indeed we remember that promise to pray, after walking away. But carefully notice that Jesus mentioned that we saw the need and didn’t come to help. Do you remember how challenging it was to get around that time as you stayed at home recovering from your surgery, or that time while you were so weak as you dealt with recovery from a serious illness? Didn’t you wish that God would send one of His precious angels to cook a meal for you, or take you to the doctors? Wouldn’t Jesus have been all over that situation? (f) In prison, but totally forgotten by family, friends, the church and society as a whole. Yes that Brother made a mistake, but are they not still your friend? You wouldn’t be able to socialize around church, but don’t you know that there’s a void for that prisoner when you are unable to show that you care? Jesus met us where we were, shouldn’t we do the same for those we care about? Jesus separated the ‘sheep’ from the ‘goats’ based on these principles. What do you suppose would be your sentence, friend?

PRAYER: Father in heaven, we are such a spoiled bunch, You have blessed us with so much, yet we hold it tight to ourselves and often feel like we have earned our blessings and therefore can easily choose what we should do with them. This has hardened us to look on others in need without it impacting our hearts, and for this I humbly ask for your forgiveness, Lord. Christians often ask, and mostly strive to be more like You every day, but I pray today that change would come from impacted hearts, touched by Your ministry, Your character and Your words. Help us to set self aside and assume soft, moldable, usable hearts directed by the Master alone. Those in need, are really in need of Jesus more than anything else, and we all fit into that. Oh that we may constantly be aware of the need for our Savior, and may our hearts be humbled to not only seek Your face for our needs, but for ways to help others. Lord grant us wisdom to move and/or speak just like You demonstrated, so that others might truly see Jesus. 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!

How Long Will You Wait?

In our Scripture today, we will see more about the patient obedience of Moses, and we will have the opportunity to compare our patience, or lack thereof, with this holy man of God. This is an eye-opening experience for every child of God.

Friday, 2019-03-22

Bible Reference: Exodus 24:15-18
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: 15 Then Moses climbed up the mountain, and the cloud covered it. 16 And the glory of the Lord settled down on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it for six days. On the seventh day the Lord called to Moses from inside the cloud. 17 To the Israelites at the foot of the mountain, the glory of the Lord appeared at the summit like a consuming fire. 18 Then Moses disappeared into the cloud as he climbed higher up the mountain. He remained on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

OBSERVATION: In our Scripture today, we will see more about the patient obedience of Moses, and we will have the opportunity to compare our patience, or lack thereof, with this holy man of God. This is an eye-opening experience for every child of God.

APPLICATION: Out of the 168 hours given to us every week, there are some who calculate carefully which one-hour period they will give to God. In other words, some will say that their one hour might be used for a church service, while others will say that because there is a monthly meeting at church that lasts an hour, there will be no church service for them that week. There are some who will attend a church service, but when that hour is up, they become very fidgety and start checking their watch every five minutes with hopes that the preacher sees that and gets the message that it’s time to quit. Friends, there are real life stories behind each of these scenarios, so please don’t assume for a minute that I’m exaggerating. Now I want you to read our Scripture verses again, then stop and meditate on the picture story conveyed in those words. Let’s then allow Moses to be our mentor and leader for a while this weekend, and let’s assume that you and I are two of the 70 elders mentioned in the accompanying story around these verses. Here’s what I believe our conversation might be: So Moses, I am fine in accompanying you on a trip up that mountain tomorrow, but how long will we be gone? You see, I have sheep that must be attended to and a sick child that my wife will be burdened with while I’m away. You see, I have important responsibilities. (Moses) – Son, my allegiance is to God. And as fellow Elders, we must obey the call of God. He said come, and I am merely following His command. There is no time limit, for our God may release us within a few hours, or it may take days. Regardless of our obligations here with our families, our lives are worth nothing without our God. It’s Him first, and then to follow in obedience as to what He tells us to do. Choose you this day whom you shall serve, young man. Friends, with these words on our mind, I believe that we will consider who our true Master is at all times, especially when it’s time to serve God, spend time with God, Worship God, or simply bask in His presence. Added to this, imagine Moses and the Elders waiting on the mountain day after day, and even after the 6th day – still nothing. No I didn’t say one hour, like we are more apt to commit to, nor did I say six hours, which may sound extreme to most of us. It wasn’t until the seventh day that the Lord called out to Moses from the cloud. But that’s not all, Moses then moves on up higher through the clouds and spends another 40 days up there with the Lord. Friends, what hit me hard here in this story, is that Moses was on God’s schedule, and not his own. Will the world continue on without you if God pulled you aside for about 50 days? You better believe it. You may feel like the shop won’t open tomorrow, or the kids won’t get to school, or the family will run out of money. Let me encourage you to get over yourself. The world will go on, your business will go on, and in your surrendered state before the Master of this universe, you will be blessed beyond all measure. Recognize that there is NOTHING more important than time with God. Recognize that your life is so complicated because you are so dependent on yourself and your capabilities. Let us STOP and get in tuned with the Master. He designed us, and this whole world in which we are a part. Don’t ever forget that HE has the power to do every little thing that we worry about, except our temptation to sin. God loves us from the very depths of His heart, and He will take care of us, and those things that we tend to worry about. So why not trust Him completely and wholeheartedly? Be willing to spend time with Him – any amount of time that He might demand. No time-limits, please?

PRAYER: They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall rise up with wings like eagles… Lord Jesus, please forgive us for trying to place You in the same category as our microwave, or our convection oven – instant results. How refreshing to be reminded of Moses, and the time that He spend waiting to hear from You, and then the time just basking at Your feet. Please revive Your church oh Lord – that’s us. For we need to be reminded of the importance of spending time with You without time limits. You alone are God, and we are Your masterpieces created to serve, worship and adore You. Please help us to always be reminded that the Master sets the time we are allowed to spend with Him, not the other way around. Oh that You might become so important in our lives that You will be our top priority. Please move in our hearts, draw us close to You, and use us to encourage others to do the same. 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!

The Benefits of Worship and Service to God

In spite of miracle after miracle, yet God saw that the Israelites were still tempted to sin and worship idols at every opportunity. Much like ‘believers’ today, I believe. So I want us to meditate on the promises that God told to the Israelites, because I believe that He will do the same for us, if we meet the same conditions stated in these verses!

Thursday, 2019-03-21

Bible Reference: Exodus 23:25-26
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 25 Worship and serve only the Eternal your God, and I will bless you with an ample supply of wholesome food and clean water. I will take away all sickness from you, 26 prevent miscarriages and barrenness, and give you long, productive lives.

OBSERVATION: In spite of miracle after miracle, yet God saw that the Israelites were still tempted to sin and worship idols at every opportunity. Much like ‘believers’ today, I believe. So I want us to meditate on the promises that God told to the Israelites, because I believe that He will do the same for us, if we meet the same conditions stated in these verses!

APPLICATION: I wonder what types of responses we might receive if we asked the typical church attendee in each of our towns, or churches: ‘Why does one worship?’ and ‘Why would one serve God?’. I would imagine that would yield an interesting set of answers! But I also believe that in pondering those hypothetical questions, believers might also be forced to answer those questions from a very personal standpoint: Why do I wake up from my warm bed, forego the trip to the beach on this beautiful day – one of the few that I’m off from work each week? Just as challenging, they might also question themselves: Why do I sacrifice my time in serving at my church? It seems so unappreciated and the good Lord knows that there is so much more that I need time to accomplish in my personal life. I believe by now you have probably pondered these questions personally, and have a few choice answers of your own! But let’s look at this from a scriptural standpoint. You see, I believe that God actually created us to worship Him. The following scriptures help to convince me of this: John 4:23-24; Revelation 4:11; Hebrews 1:6; Friends, I believe that a reminder is in order for us, so that we stop fooling ourselves into thinking that worship is about: Going to church, even though this is one of the best places you can find yourselves at, with other believers; Good worship songs and a rocking worship band, although this truly enhances our worship services; Worshiping a God that you do not personally know – for then you go through the motion without a personal attachment; Worshiping God out of obligation or requirement, rather than from a heart of self gratitude and personal experience with the Almighty. Friends, when our hearts are right with God, we will not only worship Him wholeheartedly, but we will desire to serve Him faithfully from a pure heart. Think about what this type of service might yield, versus a sense of obligation to serve, or just wanting to see all positions filled in a certain ministry area! Please note that God promised the Israelites wholesome food, clean water, good and productive lives in return for changed hearts that show evidence through worship and service. I can only believe that our God is the same today as He was yesterday, and that He has many blessings in store for those of us with thankful and loving hearts who sincerely dedicate ourselves to spreading His love through reaching others for the Kingdom, and serving from the depths of our heart as an extension of God’s outreached hand to those who need Him. Please communicate with your Savior, Jesus the Christ – my wonderful Lord, and commit yourself fully to Him. There is absolutely no telling what He has in store for us when we join Him in Heaven, dear friends!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, I come before You today as one who is not perfect, and I am therefore guilty of many of the things I shared in this devotional. I believe that many of my friends who will read this devotional today will honestly bow before you also with guilt about the things that are discussed above. You know the temptations and sin that distract us from a right and honest relationship with you, and because of this we are prone to wander and therefore not worship You in Spirit and in truth, and we serve out of obligation rather than as a result of our desire to share Your wonderful love with others who need You. Please dear Lord, make us a people who love You from the very depths of our heart, so that we may share with others from that same deep love that we experience. May Your kingdom come oh Lord, and may You be magnified in everything that I 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 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!

Warning, Prepare For…

In our Scripture today we are receiving yet another warning of something that will impact all mankind. Now it’s up to mankind to take that warning seriously and prepare themselves for the impending, pronounced occurrence, or do nothing, and be prepared for the dangerous, life-threatening results. I will expand on this in the ‘Application’, and I pray that you are concerned enough to continue reading, as this will impact you and your loved ones.

Wednesday, 2019-03-20

Bible Reference: Matthew 24:42-44
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 42 This is why you must stay alert: because no one knows the day your Lord will come. 43 “But realize this: If a homeowner had known what time of night the burglar would come to rob his house, he would have been alert and ready, and not let his house be robbed. 44 So always be ready, alert, and prepared, because at an hour when you’re not expecting him, the Son of Man will come.”

OBSERVATION: In our Scripture today we are receiving yet another warning of something that will impact all mankind. Now it’s up to mankind to take that warning seriously and prepare themselves for the impending, pronounced occurrence, or do nothing, and be prepared for the dangerous, life-threatening results. I will expand on this in the ‘Application’, and I pray that you are concerned enough to continue reading, as this will impact you and your loved ones.

APPLICATION: Through analysis of past weather systems, men are able to predict how many hurricanes we might expect in a given year, and even the impact they may have on certain areas of the world. Meteorologists are therefore able to alert residents of what a storm is currently doing, and what its predictive direction and velocity might be in future hours and days. It’s not uncommon to see some residents begin to evacuate, based on the warnings, while some feel like other things are more important, or they could very well take care of themselves, even if their area is hit with unusually high winds, twisters, etc. Some of these brave men and women survive these horrific weather systems, while others don’t. In our Scripture today, we are being warned of the unannounced, non-predictive, return of Jesus Christ. Notice that no-one knows the day or the hour of His return. It’s not on the radar for our meteorologists to sound the warning, and even if it was, I believe that mankind would be even more stubborn about listening to and doing anything about the warnings, than they do with the hurricanes, or winter storm warnings. I am not all that pessimistic, I’m just sharing what I see each and every Saturday/Sunday morning when church doors open, and teachers and pastors look into the ‘radar’ God prepared for them, the Bible, and they share the warnings and readiness steps with a very small percentage of residents concerned enough to care about their eternal future. Friends, this is not just another warning, like a storm that may dissipate or just turn a different direction. Jesus didn’t say that He may come back, but instead said that He will return to earth to take His children home to glory. If I knew a bad storm was headed my way and could possible endanger all those within the sound of my voice, I would find every avenue possible to get the word out to my family, friends, neighbors and fellow residents. This devotional is an avenue that I have chosen to warn everyone, that Jesus told me in His precious Word, that He would be coming soon to collect His children before the rest of the world is released to Satan and the awful damnation of Hell itself. My prayer, and my sincere wish, is that ALL will be saved and join me around the throne in Heaven. I pray that you will heed the warning given and that you will surrender your life to the lordship of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Please don’t wait, His return could actually occur before you complete your reading of this devotional. Accept Jesus now, won’t you, dear friend? Please see my ‘Footnote’ for tips on accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior.

PRAYER: Lord, I have no reason to doubt Your Word, because so much of it has been proven, or Your predictions have already come true. It frightens me about Your warnings, but I appreciate Your patience, because so many remain undecided as to what they will do with the only One who loves them unconditionally, and has sacrificed His very own Son for their salvation. Lord, as many teachers and pastors try to do every week, I ask today that You might tender the hardened hearts of those that might read this devotional and do not claim You as Lord. May this be the day of salvation for many, is my heartfelt prayer, oh Lord – my Rock and my Redeemer. 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!

To Be Treasured By God

Saturday, 2019-03-16

Bible Reference: Exodus 19:5-6
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: Now if you will hear My voice, obey what I say, and keep My covenant, then you—out of all the nations of the world—will be My treasured people. After all, the earth belongs to Me. You will be My kingdom of priests, a nation holy and set apart.”

OBSERVATION: Often we will ask God for things, and expect a whole lot from Him, but how often do we dig into His Word, learn about His commands and obediently follow His instructions? Let’s meditate on how this compares to God’s conditional promise to the Israelites that is detailed in Exodus 19:5.

APPLICATION: I wonder how many of us would pass up on a good deal, that we knew depended only on a few provisions that were within our ability to achieve? Here’s an example of a scenario that we might quickly jump to: If you move from Florida to Georgia, you will become rich from working the soil there (farming) because of the natural minerals and nutrients, and you will enjoy the much cooler weather there in which to farm. Wouldn’t you think that some of our Floridians would pack up and begin our move to Georgia, to enjoy the new life that would include the riches of the land there? So let’s consider what we would do if God said to us something similar to what He told the Israelites: (a) ‘If you hear my voice’ and I believe this means that we would be required to not just say that we hear God’s voice, but that we would allow His words to penetrate our very being and have an impact on our lives; (b) ‘If you obey what I say’ and I believe this means that we would be prepared to stop assuming that the Word is for our wicked neighbor, or for that unfriendly guy down the street, but rather that we, personally, would be prepared to respond to God’s Word by obeying what He tells us to do; and (c) ‘Keep my covenants’ and I believe that this means that we stop pretending that we are obedient to His written Word, but instead decide to truly obey His covenant that God set forth for us. All three of these things sound simple enough, but God added a reward for the Israelites, and I believe that He would do the same for us if we truly follow His conditions – that we would be His treasured people. Yes among all the people of the world, He would choose to honor and treasure us. Friends, this scenario is very much aligned with what God did for us on Calvary, by sacrificing His very own Son. He made such a sacrifice as a reward for us, if we accept His Son as Lord and Savior. The reward is that we would spend eternity with the Father and the Son in heaven, singing praises to the King of all kings and Lord of all lords. This is not just a reward dear one, but in comparison to the alternative – eternal damnation under the leadership of Satan, our choice/offer by God is the only one that anyone of sound mind would deliberately choose. Oh that this may be the choice already made by all who read this devotional today. If you have yet to make that commitment, let me encourage you to read my Footnote carefully and follow the steps that will lead you to find Jesus and accept Him as Lord!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for providing the means for us to find eternal peace, and eternal salvation through Your precious Son, Jesus. May all who read this devotional today be reminded of the importance of making peace with You so that Your eternal reward may fill their heart with joy and everlasting hope. Please soften the hearts of those who will read this, but have yet to agree to the simple plan of salvation. To know You is to have peace everlasting! 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!

What to Expect From The Greatest One Among You

These verses really impacted me. Because in our ‘dog-eat-dog’ world, where everyone is greedy after the position just above them, so that they could earn more money, and be looked up to. Imagine how we would feel if the further up we went, the more servanthood was expected of us? That doesn’t even sound right in our world today, and in the work atmosphere in which we find ourselves, right? Then let’s dig into the Word by meditating on this for a while today.

Friday, 2019-03-15

Bible Reference: Matthew 23:8-11
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: You must not be called ‘Teacher,’ because you are all equal and have only one Teacher. And you must not call anyone here on earth ‘Father,’ because you have only the one Father in heaven. 10 Nor should you be called ‘Leader,’ because your one and only leader is the Messiah.11 The greatest one among you must be your servant.

OBSERVATION: These verses really impacted me. Because in our ‘dog-eat-dog’ world, where everyone is greedy after the position just above them, so that they could earn more money, and be looked up to. Imagine how we would feel if the further up we went, the more servanthood was expected of us? That doesn’t even sound right in our world today, and in the work atmosphere in which we find ourselves, right? Then let’s dig into the Word by meditating on this for a while today.

APPLICATION: A new hire will most often start out in the lowest position of an organization, so that they might learn that position and hopefully everything else above that position, as they progress along in their employment. Imagine if, at the beginning of year three, they were told by their employer that they want them to take on more servanthood, along with added responsibility in the organization. Do you suppose they would be just a little confused? I believe in our employment world today, that individuals feel honored to move up, because finally they could have others do all the piddly jobs for them, to help them look good and move up even more. In some environments, supervisors are encouraged to not mix with their employees, because they would lose their respect. But what about the child of God that studies the practices of Jesus, God’s Son, and tries to follow the concepts taught in His Word? Is it not unimaginable to think of a ‘leader’, or a ‘manager’ to lift up their workers and praise them for helping the department achieve their goals? Wouldn’t that leader or manager feel less than adequate before their boss? What about in the church? I hope that you are not seeing your pastors, or elders, or deacons, or teachers, placing themselves on such pedestals that they wait to be served by others. For if we are truly to imitate our Lord and Savior, we would see our main ‘servants’ scrubbing the floor, washing the feet of others, serving food to the hungry and showing the love of Jesus to all they come into contact with. Jesus encouraged us to not even assume titles by which He or His Father were known, for we would never want others to assume for a moment that we are to be looked up to as another ‘Jesus’. For there is none like Him, and we are never to try and assume His place among those with whom we worship, work or mix with. Friends, we are on this earth to promote Jesus, not to be His equal, because we would never succeed in that. While we should strive to imitate His goodness as a sign of obeying His teachings, we must be careful to pass all praises on to Him. For it’s Jesus that we live for; It’s Jesus that we represent; It’s Jesus who loved us enough that He died on a cruel cross to save us eternally; and it’s Jesus who is coming back to gather His chosen ones to accompany Him in glory before the Father. Friends, we are servants of a great BIG God! Let’s remember our role, and His, each day of our lives, and seek to follow His instructions regarding our servant role while here on earth.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, King of all kings and Lord of all lords. Greater than all others, yet You demonstrated servanthood while here on earth, and because You want us to live our life as an example of Yours, I believe that You are commanding that we also be servants to those around us, including those that we may have supervisory charge. In humility You came to this world, in humility You lived, and in humility You were crucified. Therefore to imitate You, we must also be humble. Please continue to work on us, mold us and direct us, so that others will recognize You and want to know You as 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 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!