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

Wednesday, 2019-04-10

Bible Reference: Matthew 28:8-9; 16-17
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: 8-9  The women, deep in wonder and full of joy, lost no time in leaving the tomb. They ran to tell the disciples. Then Jesus met them, stopping them in their tracks. “Good morning!” he said. They fell to their knees, embraced his feet, and worshiped him. | 16-17 Meanwhile, the eleven disciples were on their way to Galilee, headed for the mountain Jesus had set for their reunion. The moment they saw him they worshiped him. Some, though, held back, not sure about worship, about risking themselves totally.

OBSERVATION: In these two incidents told about in Matthew 28, we are reminded that when we find ourselves in the presence of Jesus, we will worship Him. In another Scripture we are told that every knee will bow and every tongue confess, that Jesus Christ is Lord – That is ‘Worship’! As we meditate on this, let’s look at today’s opportunities to ‘worship’ the King of all kings and Lord of all lords!

APPLICATION: Those looking for excuses on why we are not impacted like the women were in verse 8 above, might say that the advantage the women had over us was that they actually saw Jesus physically in all His glory; they saw Him crucified; and they would therefore have reason to be emotionally attached to Him, especially in His risen state. But I really would like for us to examine that excuse carefully, for I could see the glory of God in everything that I see and touch throughout my day; I could follow the evidence of Him being with me as I reflect on protection from a near accident while driving to work, or saving my youngest child – at a time that doctors had given up all hope of survival; I knew it was the power of my Lord that healed my aching body and gave direction to my physician. So my God’s not dead, no, He’s very much alive and evident in all aspects of my life. Therefore I can’t say that the women had one up on me. How then can you and I possibly use any excuse to not lie prostrate before Him in worship and adoration? Let’s look at the second set of verses, and be reminded that those who lived with, and worked alongside, Jesus, had doubt in their hearts and were unable to truly bow at His feet and worship Him. Could it be that we are like those disciples who may have doubted the healing touch of the Master; or perhaps looked at the miraculous experience of Lazarus being raised from the dead – just like the gathered crowd may have whispered – that he really wasn’t dead at all? The crowd doubted because the knew that Jesus was just the son of a local girl Mary, and that carpenter’s son, Joseph. What’s our excuse? Friends, this really brings us to the point of examining our own hearts, and our tendency to worship our Lord, or not. We say that ‘we have met to worship’, when we come together at a church building on weekends. How is that? Do we find a prod at the door that enables us to sing, and/or listen to a messenger of God speak his heart to us? Did we truly find opportunities to ‘worship the King’ since we last met together at church? In these verses, I was touched by the Spirit of God, to believe that when we see Jesus and witness His divine presence among us, particularly those that know Him as ‘Father’, or ‘Lord’, or ‘Master’, or ‘Friend’, or ‘Savior’, and as ‘Creator’ of this whole universe, shouldn’t our very souls immediately, and automatically, burst forth in worship to Him. Out of respect and honor, we may fall to our knees, but I don’t believe that anything could prevent the overflow of excitement and reverence that we experience internally, when we enter into His presence. Please don’t wait for the weekend services for this. Allow God to envelop you, fill you with so much of His holy presence, that praise and worship will burst forth even today! He’s our Lord and soon coming King, my friend, if we expect to worship Him throughout eternity, then let’s not hesitate doing just that even now – today!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord, for making Yourself known to even us – sinners saved by the wonderful grace of Jesus! Our love to Your Son, and our appreciation for all that You have done for us, should be reflected in worship and praise at frequent intervals. May our praise emanate from us in ways that are very obvious to You and to those around us. Oh that my family, friends, coworkers, church members, and all who come into contact with me, see Jesus today, and may they be drawn to accept and worship this same Jesus that I love, honor and look forward to seeing one day in glory! There will be readers of this devotional today whose desire it is to also see, worship and share Jesus with everyone in their circle of influence. Oh that their wishes may become a reality today dear Lord, so that You may be magnified through 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!

Monday, 2019-04-08

Bible Reference: Matthew 27:50-53
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 50 Jesus passionately cried out, took his last breath, and gave up his spirit. 51 At that moment the veil in the Holy of Holies was torn in two from the top to the bottom. The earth shook violently, rocks were split apart, 52 and graves were opened. Then many of the holy ones who had died were brought back to life and came out of their graves. 53 And after Jesus’ resurrection, they were plainly seen by many people walking in Jerusalem. 54 Now, when the Roman military officer and his soldiers witnessed what was happening and felt the powerful earthquake, they were extremely terrified. They said, “There is no doubt, this man was the Son of God!

OBSERVATION: I find it interesting that in spite of all that the Chief Priests and Pharisees did to mock, accuse, arrest, and force Herod’s hand into the crucifixion of Jesus, now that He is dead, their worries are really beginning. This is proof positive that they believed every word Jesus said, they just couldn’t handle the attention Jesus was receiving from the multitudes who chose to claim Him as their King, Ruler, Miracle Worker, Master and Lord. All doubt was removed at the death of our Lord, when God showed His power once again. How does God get our attention?

APPLICATION: Isn’t it interesting how Christians might share with friends about their first hand experiences with Jesus, and tell them about the awesome power of the holy Son of God and, too often, friends will look on with a smirk on their faces, wondering if we may have also lost other areas of our realistic view of life here on this earth. However, in a time of need, these same friends will call on these same Christian friends for advice, comfort, prayers, good thoughts, etc. It’s just like the Chief Priests and the Pharisees. They looked on, seeing what was happening right in front of their very eyes, yet they knew that they couldn’t believe what they saw, because of popular belief, and the traditional teachings of their ancestors. Jesus and His disciples were mocked at every opportunity, yet the mockers saw a man who was blind, get up and walk and talk and see everything that was around him. They sorrowed with Jairus over the untimely death of his daughter, yet they saw Jesus use powerful, yet very simple words, to order the resurrection of this young lady. So how is it with you my friend? You are probably in a circle of friends where a Christian keeps sharing the love, the power, the wisdom and the promise of eternal life in heaven, and while you can’t seem to find a way to prove that friend wrong, it all sounds so foreign, compared to the average leader, or friend that you know today. But something keeps tugging at your heart’s door about this awesome God that your friend keeps on about. What do you do with that? My friend, let me suggest to you today, that anytime something totally foreign (to your normal way of thinking) is coming up in your mind like this, take time and have a conversation with the Holy Son of God that you keep hearing about. Others are probably praying for you and for your salvation, and Jesus will speak to you in ways that you may not recognize at first. However, just as the Chief Priests and Pharisees finally acknowledged that Jesus was the Son of God, may I encourage you to also acknowledge that still small voice that speaks powerfully to you, and may you be prompted to say like the profit Samuel said as a very young man – “speak Lord, for your servant hears You”. I’m sure that you’ve never being taught to disregard someone when they are speaking to you. Please don’t begin that now, especially as it pertains to the Son of God. For He holds the keys to eternal life in heaven with He and His Father. I believe that He longs for your decision to turn to Him, my friend. Don’t disappoint Him, for He truly is – the Son of God.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, please speak to the hearts of those who are running from You today. Please remind them of Your love and Your awesome power. Please show them the joys of heaven and life eternally with You. May there be decisions to follow You today dear Lord, especially in the case of those that will hear Your voice again today through the Scriptures, or through personal friends. May Your perfect will be done today, and may the miracle of new birth be realized by many, is my humble prayer dear 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!

Saturday, 2019-04-06

Bible Reference: Psalm 25:7-10
Translation: The Voice Translation (Voice)

Bible Text: Do not HOLD against me the sins I committed when I was young; instead, deal with me according to Your mercy and love. Then Your goodness may be demonstrated in all the world, Eternal One. IMMENSELY good and honorable is the Eternal; that’s why H/e teaches sinners the way. With JUSTICE, He directs the humble in all that is right, and He shows them His way. 10 KIND and true are all the ways of the Eternal to the people who keep His covenant and His words.

OBSERVATION: Like many of us, David felt like approaching God in the light of who he was in his earlier life, might be a hopeless case. However in light of who God is, and the mercy and grace that He is known for, David knew that there was hope for himself and for all who commit to serving Christ and obeying His commands.

APPLICATION: It is so easy for us to listen to Satan and believe there is no hope for us because of all that we were. I found it refreshing to be reminded that when I committed my life to Jesus and accepted the outstanding grace that He offers to His children, that He not only cleansed me of my sin up to that point in time, but that He looks on me as a sinner saved by His grace. Sure I make mistakes still, but with the Holy Spirit living in me and prompting me to the way of the cross, I am constantly reeled back in and redirected to the ways of the King who reigns over me. Friends, I don’t believe I am alone in feeling this way at times, for I’ve heard from many how hopeless they feel at times. May I implore you to be encouraged by the words of David in this Psalm today and be renewed in knowing that those whom Jesus has welcomed into His fold, will never be released to any other master. Think of your earthly mother and father – you can’t undue the fact that they are your blood parents. Jesus would never accept you into His family and then push you away every time you mess up. He wants you to seek His face daily and realign your will and way with His, every moment of every day. He loves you beyond anything you could ever imagine and I believe that He is anxiously awaiting your arrival in glory to join He and His Father around His throne. Would you commit to follow the last verse of our Scripture today and remain true to God’s Word and keep His commandments? The promise is that He will remain kind and true to you Brothers and Sisters! There is no better companion than to have Jesus on your side while here on earth and when we see Him face to face in heaven!

PRAYER: Lord You are so good to us. Praise God that You are able to see us as ‘white as snow’, because of being redeemed by Your precious blood. Most of us have nothing that we could brag about from our past, and absolutely nothing that we can place before You as redemption for our sins. Thank You for Your enormous sacrifice, and for Your uncompromising love for us, in spite of who we used to be. In being cleansed by Your blood, because of Your amazing grace, we are united with You in spirit and filled with the promise of eternity around Your throne. Oh what a Savior! Lord teach us daily to live like who we are, and not like who we used to be. 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!

Life-Paths Led By God

Friday, 2019-04-05

Bible Reference: Psalm 25:4-7
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 
Lord, direct me throughout my journey
so I can experience your plans for my life.
Reveal the life-paths that are pleasing to you.
Escort me along the way; take me by the hand and teach me.
For you are the God of my increasing salvation;
I have wrapped my heart into yours!b
6–7 Forgive my failures as a young man,
and overlook the sins of my immaturity.
Give me grace, Lord! Always look at me
through your eyes of love—
your forgiving eyes of mercy and compassion.
When you think of me, see me as one you love and care for.
How good you are to me!

OBSERVATION: David shows us in this passage that he was fully dependent on God for direction, and on seeing him for who he truly was. Often we fail so badly in our decisions and life-choices that we may tend to think that there is no way that God would forgive us and accept us as His very own adopted son or daughter. David shares with us how this miracle works. Let’s stop and meditate on this for a little while.

APPLICATION: On many occasions we come to a fork in the road and deliberate on which way we should go. No matter how hard we try, and how hard we try to weigh out the pros and cons, our sight is limited and often our decision making is marred by selfishness. Consider the fact that when we make decisions based on the weather, we might look into the skies and observe the current weather, or we might listen to a meteorologist, for their profession is to study the weather patterns and predict future conditions. But how often have you found them to be correct? So our planning is often based on chance, backed up with a plan ‘B’! But I want us to use this Scripture today to reflect on the God of this universe. Remember, He’s the one who put this whole earth together; the One who formed you and I; the One who sets the stage each day for rain, or sunshine, for heat or cold, for miracles to stump the meteorologist who thought they had the weather patterns all figured out! Yes, He’s the one that will cause us to lift our eyes unto the hills and exclaim ‘Only our God is capable of such miracles’. Friends, I want to share a real life experience with you, so that we might be reminded of the power of our God in our life-paths: In the summer of 1987 I had the daunting task of sharing with my parents, located in Eleuthera, Bahamas, that after much prayer and a miraculous turnaround and approval by US Immigration, my wife and I had been accepted as permanent residents of the United States, and that we would move in a few months. In an expression of shock and disappointment, my dad said ‘now that we’re getting older, you are moving further away’. Those words burned into my memory, as I always strived to please my parents, and never cause them hurt or grief. However, fast forward to roughly a year after being told those words by my dad, as my siblings and I saw the need to have my dad flown to the US for medical help. This led to the discovery that he had experienced a heart attack, and needed immediate medical attention. Even without medical insurance, yet we were able to secure the attention and correction needed for my dad. About a month later while father and son were sitting in our Florida home, my dad looked at me and said ‘Now I understand what God was doing in getting you moved to Florida’! Friends, that was not one of the reasons I gave God for wanting to move to the US, but my awesome God knew exactly the life-path that I needed to be on, in order to save my dad’s life! In fact, just months after that, a similar story occurred with Him saving my sister-in-law’s life. May I be the first one to tell you today that there is no god like Our God! Our responsibility is to know Him, trust in Him, love Him and follow Him in obedience, for He cares for us and He will direct our paths – our life-path! Please read my ‘Footnote’ carefully and follow the link ‘To Know Jesus’ make your connection with this same awesome God that I shared about in this devotional. He loves you as well my friend!

PRAYER: Dear Father in heaven, thank You for reminding us yet again how awesome and powerful You are. You helped my ancestor, David; You also helped my dad and sister-in-law, and answered the prayers of my family about their health. I know You are still God, because I still experience You even today. I know that You also love my friends who will read this devotional today, and who need a special touch from You, or to know that You are in total control of their life-path. Please draw them unto Yourself dear God. Cement their relationship with You and encourage them daily along their life-path ordained by Your miraculous touch. Lord, may You reign supremely in all aspects of our lives. AMEN!

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

More Than Enough

Thursday, 2019-04-04

Bible Reference: Exodus 36:3-5
Translation: GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Bible Text: Moses turned over to them all the contributions the Israelites had brought for the work of constructing the holy place. But the people still kept bringing him freewill offerings every morning. Finally, all the skilled craftsmen who were working on the holy place stopped what they were doing. They all came to Moses. They said, “The people are bringing much more than we need for doing the work the Lord commanded us to do.”

OBSERVATION: Moses obviously had the secret for encouraging his people to give towards projects ordained by God. Think about the difference between the challenges we face today, and the overflow that Moses experienced. What’s the difference? Let us meditate on that today!

APPLICATION: What are you finding are the greatest financial challenges at your church, and in your own life? Are you and your church convinced that God has you on a mission for Him? Are you just as convinced when you feel collectively that He is wanting to see you continue expanding your ministry for the purpose of ministering to more in your community who need to know Him as Lord? What are some of the first obstacles that you think of? Provisions are probably right at the top of the list, because I believe that we take our eyes off the ministry needs that God prompted us towards, and we begin looking inward towards how will we provide the buildings and people to accomplish the associated growth that God calls us to. For you see, when God calls us to a mission that He ordains, He knows exactly what we will need to pull that ministry off. We suddenly see certain people showing up, that may later become helpers, and we may even see giving increase. We may see miracles increase, as God draws us closer to the Miracle Worker, and grows our faith to lean on Him rather than the limited resources that we often see through the limitations of mere man. Friends, wouldn’t it be awesome to hear your pastor say one morning at church, that it’s OK that you limit your giving, as the church has been extremely blessed financially and currently not only meeting its own budget, but have been helping many other needs that it is aware of! I believe that Moses showed us that if we believe in the Lord, our God, to direct our path, reach the lost in our community, and grow the church for His glory, then let’s not think for a moment that He will call us to increased ministry without having a well defined plan on how we will accomplish the housing of that ministry and the workers to accomplish the work. Is it not a simple act of faith, in knowing that if He calls us to it, He will see us through it? How’s your faith my friend? Do you have to see it to believe, or do you actually have faith to believe in our awesome God?

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for Your blessings on me. Thank You Lord for blessing the ministries of Your local churches in my area. Oh that we would always keep our eyes fixed on You, and not allow the distractions of this world to hold us back in accomplishing all that You call us to do. Lord, we are Yours, and we want You to accomplish Your work in our midst. We humble ourselves before You and ask that You use even us in Your ministry to reach the lost in our communities. 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!

Wednesday, 2019-04-03

Bible Reference: Exodus 34:23-24
Translation: New International Version (NIV)

Bible Text: 23 Three times a year all your men are to appear before the Sovereign Lord, the God of Israel. 24 I will drive out nations before you and enlarge your territory, and no one will covet your land when you go up three times each year to appear before the Lord your God.

OBSERVATION: This is an interesting meeting Moses had with the Lord. After the last similar meeting, Moses returned to his people, and became so angry at finding them worshiping idols again, that he threw down the stones upon which God had written the Ten Commandments. God had Moses write the Commandments on the stones this time, but He also ordered Moses to gather the men together and meet with Him (God) three times per year while they attended festivals. It sounds like God wants time together with His leaders!

APPLICATION: It is extremely challenging to get men out to church on the weekends, and especially at midweek prayer and Bible study. However, some time ago we were able to take a group from our church to a Bible based, Spirit led, prayer conference for approximately two full days. These days were filled with the Word of God, as Scripture was shared by each participant; songs prompted by the Holy Spirit; and prayer from the heart of each attendee, as prompted by God. No agenda, just waiting before the Lord and obeying the leading of His Holy Spirit. What might seem amazing to many, is that the crowd doubled in size the second year! What a sweet, Holy Ghost filled, time with the Lord! We returned to our church fired up, renewed and ready for the Lord to continue His work in and through us. Being a part of our two days of prayer, helped me to identify with what God was telling Moses to do. I wonder, if your pastor organized a get-away at your church: How many men would sacrifice vacation time to go and spend devoted time with the Lord? How many wives or girlfriends would encourage husbands or boyfriends to please go and participate? How many employers would welcome the time off for employees that they suspect would return and pray for the success of their business? Friends, I wonder how many gods we place before the God of this universe when we can’t find time for church services over the weekend or a discipleship class during the week? We tend to blame it on ‘time’, but perhaps the word ‘priority’ might better explain your shortcoming! Imagine: Lord, please forgive me that I made it a priority to take my family to the beach today/took my wife shopping today/went to have lunch with old friends today; played golf today…. but didn’t make it a priority to take my family to church. Can we, in all good conscience, add to the end of those excuses: ‘but bless me anyway and guide the thoughts of my troubled son/daughter this week’??? Friends, I believe that we are either all for God, or we’re not. I know that we can’t be at every single church gathering, but sincerely before God, we must be ready to answer His question on the priorities of our lives. Please consider taking time away to draw close to God, so that He might draw close to you. I don’t believe that there could be one thing more strengthening for your relationship with God, which will also enrich your relationship with your family and coworkers.

PRAYER: Lord God, please forgive us for the many excuses we come up with regarding our priorities. Too often You are placed at the bottom of the list, or as a last resort. This must be turned around if we ever expect to draw close to You, or encourage/convince an unbeliever. Please give us strength, boldness and self-determination to serve You wholeheartedly and without excuses. You gave up Your life for us, how much more can we do in return? Give Your children boldness and commitment today I sincerely beg of You dear God, AMEN!

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

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!

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