The Miraculous Good News!

This message was addressed to all world leaders that reported to the him, from a king who could not get a handle on the power of God Almighty. King Nebuchadnezzar had a disturbing dream, but after trying every other source available to him for an interpretation of his dream, and only upon hearing from a stubborn young man (Daniel) that he had imprisoned, but who trusted and believed in God for his wisdom, did the king clearly receive an interpretation of his dream – a miracle in his eyes! The news was worthy of sharing with everyone!

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2020-11-15
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: Daniel 4:1-3
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT:  ….May peace and prosperity be yours! I am pleased to be able to tell you about all the signs and miracles the Most High God has done for me. 3 How great are His signs; how powerful are His miracles! His kingdom will endure forever; His reign will last from generation to generation.

OBSERVATION: This message was addressed to all world leaders that reported to the him, from a king who could not get a handle on the power of God Almighty. King Nebuchadnezzar had a disturbing dream, but after trying every other source available to him for an interpretation of his dream, and only upon hearing from a stubborn young man (Daniel) that he had imprisoned, but who trusted and believed in God for his wisdom, did the king clearly receive an interpretation of his dream – a miracle in his eyes! The news was worthy of sharing with everyone!

APPLICATION: It was very clear that it was God who gave the king the interpretation, for Daniel was just a humble man imprisoned by King Nebuchadnezzar for refusing to obey his orders, and instead standing firm in his faith. Before I challenge us to look inward and compare our witness with that of Daniel, let’s first look at the initial encounter the king had with Daniel. The king had ordered all the strong, wise and promising men be brought into his palace for indoctrination into the riches of royalty, but for the sake of servant leadership. The food, the lifestyle, the workouts and of course the ways of the king. Daniel was chosen as one of the special men fitting the kings description, but the first thing Daniel had to deal with was the food, for it was quite different from the diet he was directed by Scripture to follow. There is an old proverb ‘when in Rome, do as the Romans do’, but Daniel was not willing to compromise his walk with God – even in his diet. Surely most individuals would have been afraid to speak up about the rich food being offered to them in the king’s palace, but under the inspiration of the God that he served, Daniel asked for a compromise by the guards. I wonder if right from the very start, the king may have been impressed by this young man with principles that he was not willing to compromise? What do we do? All within our power to save our lives and promote ourselves in our jobs or in the environment in which we find ourselves, correct? You know, it may please the boss for a moment, when we compromise our ‘stand’ on a subject to agree with him or her, but imagine what must really be going through the mind of the boss? Perhaps something like: he/she really has no firm principles. They will surrender to my will as soon as I speak, or especially after I throw a few dollar signs in front of them. But what does this type of behavior say to God about your relationship with Him? You often count on God, especially when times are rough. But can He depend on you, and especially on the commitment you made to Him? In Daniel we see similar behavior to that of Joseph, who also interpreted dreams. Neither were push-overs. What might you be considered in the eyes of those who have authority over you? Can they proudly tell the world about a man, or a woman, who is truly faithful to their Lord and, although respectful, will not cross over that fine line of what they believe to be their God-given responsibility and choice?

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for all that You did, and continue to do for me. Lord I am so ashamed that I am not as bold in my witness and testimony as I should be in sonship. I pray that just as Nebuchadnezzar came to his senses and saw the power of God through his humble servant Daniel, that I too might be awakened to Your awesome power and Your mighty works all around me. Please Lord, speak to each reader. May your Word become alive in our lives, and may others know that Jesus Christ is alive and well because they see His wondrous works in and through us. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

An Eye-Witness Account

John could have told us a lot about what the prophets foretold and what his fellow disciples witnessed, but I can’t imagine that it would have affected us like hearing John talk about his own personal experiences. As we meditate, let us be mindful of what we share with others so that they might receive maximum impact of our Savior and Lord.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-11-13
WRITTEN AT: Ormond Beach, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 John 1:1; 3-4
TRANSLATION: Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

BIBLE TEXT: [We are writing] about the Word of Life [[a]in] Him Who existed from the beginning, Whom we have heard, Whom we have seen with our [own] eyes, Whom we have gazed upon [for ourselves] and have touched with our [own] hands.
What we have seen and [ourselves] heard, we are also telling you, so that you too may [d]realize and enjoy fellowship as partners andpartakers with us. And [this] fellowship that we have [which is a [e]distinguishing mark of Christians] is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ (the Messiah). And we are now writing these things to you so that our joy [in seeing you included] may be full [and [f]your joy may be complete].

OBSERVATION: John could have told us a lot about what the prophets foretold and what his fellow disciples witnessed, but I can’t imagine that it would have affected us like hearing John talk about his own personal experiences. As we meditate, let us be mindful of what we share with others so that they might receive maximum impact of our Savior and Lord.

APPLICATION: I might tell you about the awesome fisherman that my dad was, and perhaps even tell you about one of the largest fish I ever saw him land. I might gain your interest and may even get you excited and encouraged to give the game of fishing another try. However, if I gave you a first-hand account of my most exciting fishing trip, and if I share the excitement of catching the largest fish I ever caught, I believe that I will draw you in, and some of the excitement will rub off on you. In fact, you may even have some questions for me, such as the location where I caught the monster fish, and what type bait did the trick. Can’t you imagine that John’s account of his personal experience with Jesus is much more effective because of him sharing his personal, hands-on encounters? So what about us, dear friends? It seems so easy for us to share what we read in the Bible, and we should never neglect reading God’s Word, for that is an important and key medium through which God speaks to us; corrects us; guides us and directs our daily path. However, sharing those personal encounters with God, and adding the personal impacts that our encounter brought to our lives – those are the experiences that will speak most strongly to a friend or family member. Let’s make every effort to share these times with all who will listen. They may seem small, and even appear insignificant at times, but God may have used those times to give you a testimony to share with a friend who is anxious to hear about a current one-on-one experience with the God of this universe. If you asked God for help or direction in a matter, please be careful to share how GOD showed Himself powerfully and miraculously to you. It wasn’t luck; it wasn’t happen-chance; it wasn’t due to your location or the day of the week. If you believe in your heart that God answered your prayer, then please share the goodness of God, even if you are in the presence of an atheist. Each day, and in every godly experience, God may be preparing you to minister to someone, even if you only feel like you are merely sharing a personal experience with them. As John said in verse 4, can you imagine the joy that will fill your heart when you recognize that God just used your humble experience with Him to help a lost person realize that they too can be saved? Friends, we know from the Bible that Jesus lived on earth, performed many miracles, and now sits at the right hand of the Father. The unsaved are hoping to see Jesus actively at work in the lives of His children here on earth. While we must not conjure up ideas of things where God might be at work, we must be quick to tell of the glories of the Father, as He loves us, guides us, and works in our lives each and every day.

PRAYER: Thank You Jesus for Your goodness to me and Your precious love towards even me. I have friends, family and folk that I come into contact with each day, who are unsaved and in need of a Savior. Although I cannot boast of having touched You, as John did, yet I know without a doubt that You have touched me. Please help me to be bold in sharing my experiences with those who need this to help them believe in You. Please use me, and use my readers who know You personally. May we inspire all who we meet today, so that they may see Jesus in us. Have Your perfect will and way today in our lives, and in the lives of those who need to see You today. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Our God – Filled With Wisdom and Power

God can do even what mankind finds to be impossible. Daniel needed to know what the king dreamed and what it meant. There was no earthly person that Daniel could have arranged to visit for such wisdom. On being given the answer to his dilemma, Daniel acknowledged that God placed the king there in the first place, so of course He knew his very thoughts and his dreams. Wait a minute, God put the king there? Does He still do that even today? Let’s search the heart of God for His wisdom on this today.

DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-11-12
WRITTEN AT: Ormond Beach, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Daniel 2:20-22
TRANSLATION: New Century Version (NCV)

BIBLE TEXT: 20 Daniel said: “Praise God forever and ever, because he has wisdom and power. 21 He changes the times and seasons of the year. He takes away the power of kings and gives their power to new kings. He gives wisdom to those who are wise and knowledge to those who understand. 22 He makes known secrets that are deep and hidden; he knows what is hidden in darkness, and light is all around him.

OBSERVATION: God can do even what mankind finds to be impossible. Daniel needed to know what the king dreamed and what it meant. There was no earthly person that Daniel could have arranged to visit for such wisdom. On being given the answer to his dilemma, Daniel acknowledged that God placed the king there in the first place, so of course He knew his very thoughts and his dreams. Wait a minute, God put the king there? Does He still do that even today? Let’s search the heart of God for His wisdom on this today.

APPLICATION: There are so many things that we can look at, and so many miracles that we see almost daily that reminds us of the power of our awesome God. Daniel had this kind of relationship with God, so He knew that he could call on Him for the ultimatum that the king had placed on he and his friends. But notice with me a few things about Daniel’s praise items:
1. God changes the times and seasons of the year – If any readers took this for granted and feel like anyone could change up the calendar, I would suggest that you try and change the proof of seasons also. In other words, have cold either in June and July or hot weather in December and January. Only God can do this, my friend;
2. He chooses the kings/presidents/prime ministers – We might ask why might God get involved in politics? But please be reminded that many times God will use earthly vessels to change the course of life for a nation. Look back on Scripture and be reminded how some kings were in total opposition to what God wanted to do, and God allowed many Christians to be killed and many places of worship to be destroyed, while all the while they promoted the things of Satan. It is often times like that when people of God will cry out to Him for mercy and will recognize His mighty works among them. We very easily take for granted the wondrous works of God, when everything is rosy and going our way. God may place leaders in place to lead us towards Him, or He may place them for our punishment, if needed. Yes, He is more than willing to guide us towards voting for His leader, but the Word of God is clear, that God will place His leader in charge of nations, and we (Christians) are to pray for our leaders so that they might be open to the leadership of their King – King Jesus!
3. God gives wisdom and knowledge to those who can handle it – Wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who understand;
4. He makes known those secrets that are deep and hidden – Often we will stop and ponder why certain things occur, or how some things come about. Daniel praised God for giving us peace about these uncertainties. Knowing that our God is in control of all things and that He may reveal answers to us, is something worth waiting for.
Friends, these are just a few examples of things that Daniel gave praise to God for. How many can you come up with? As children of the Most High God, we have many things we can praise Him for instead of whining and complaining about the things that we have no control over. Sing that old hymn ‘Praise God from whom all blessings flow’, and be reminded that blessings are not happen-chance, they come from God, so we are to praise Him for all our blessings, even those that we didn’t give our approval on!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord, for Your blessings on me. Blessings that I may not see right now, and blessings for the things that I would have done very differently in my ignorance. Lord You are good, and Your mercies endure forever. Thank You for placing our government leaders in place for Your purpose. May we learn to be thankful and patiently ask for Your guidance and direction, so that we may surrender our will in obedience to the laws enacted by our governments. Please bless our leaders and humble their hearts to seek Your face and obey Your commands. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

To Be Determined In Your Heart

Many of us probably ‘go with the flow’, and therefore might be considered crowd pleasers. But what if you are a child of the Most High God and have set your aim at striving every day to be like Him – follow in His footsteps and please Him by obeying His commands? Do you suppose that you could still be a ‘crowd pleaser’? Something to seriously consider today as we look at a man who was ‘determined in his heart’ to honor God.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-11-11
WRITTEN AT: Ormond Beach, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Daniel 1:8-10
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: Although the king ate only the finest Babylonian fare, Daniel was determined not to violate God’s law and defile himself by eating the food and drinking the wine that came from the king’s table; so he asked the chief of the royal eunuchs for permission not to eat the food. Now God had given Daniel special favor and fondness in the eyes of the king’s chief eunuch. 10 Still the eunuch was concerned…..

OBSERVATION: Many of us probably ‘go with the flow’, and therefore might be considered crowd pleasers. But what if you are a child of the Most High God and have set your aim at striving every day to be like Him – follow in His footsteps and please Him by obeying His commands? Do you suppose that you could still be a ‘crowd pleaser’? Something to seriously consider today as we look at a man who was ‘determined in his heart’ to honor God.

APPLICATION: I’ve seen recovering alcoholics determine in their hearts that they will not drink, nor even taste alcohol again, for fear of resurrecting their addiction. So they set that limitation for themselves, while in some cases being accountable to a recovery group, and they stick to it. Daniel spent quality time with his God and he was determined to obey His commands and live a life worthy of his calling. Because of his good health and his noble character, he was chosen for further training to serve his earthly king. Being of such noble character and in recognition of his abilities, one might think that Daniel may have done anything the king asked of him, but that was not the case. It all began with the food the king chose for him. It did not meet the standards Daniel had become accustomed to in his efforts to follow the Word of God. At that point Daniel had a decision to either join with all the king’s men and eat the rich palace food, or to insist on doing what he already knew that God wanted him to do. We all know the story, Daniel insisted on eating like he felt led of God to do, because he knew deep inside that was the right thing to do. Now Daniel could have gone on to pretend that he was eating the food, and then discard it, but no, he felt solid enough in his faith that if God took him to it, He would help him through it. So he gained the faith and courage to ask the guard for special favors in his diet. Isn’t it amazing, and even victorious, that when we determine in our hearts to obey and follow God, that He will make a way, even when it seems like there is no way? God prepared the heart of the guard, and gave him boldness to help Daniel, even at the possible expense of his own life. Wow, what a mighty God we serve! So what is there in your life that you have cowered over because of the fear of not being so popular with the crowd, or the fear of getting someone else in trouble for helping you maintain your Godly aspirations? Where is your faith dear Brother or Sister? When you reflect back over your life and remind yourself of all the many ways that God protected you, all the ways that He guided your path, all the ways that He healed your afflictions, could He possibly have lost His power? Oh dear friends, I believe this Scripture was placed before us today to remind us that we must not wait for the time of temptation, or the time of challenge and then use our circumstances to guide our decisions. Instead we must trust in God today – the One who created heaven and earth; the One who sacrificed His only Son for our salvation; and the One who loves us more than anything else in the world, and we must allow Him to hold our hand, guide our hearts and our lips, and reassure us of His protection in life, no matter the circumstances, and no matter how impossible things appear in our eyes. Know that God loves you my friend; know that He has power to do more than we could even imagine; and know that one day soon we will join with the angels around the throne where we will sing and shout His praises for ever and for ever! Go ahead, trust in Him! He can, and He will meet your needs and guide you through your life of commitment to Him!

PRAYER: When our hand is placed firmly in the powerful hand of our Master, we have nothing to fear. Thank You precious Lord! It seems so natural to worry, and so in line with the world to just go along with the crowd, even when we know that we have committed our life to the lordship of our King, Jesus. Please Lord, keep us humble and help us to keep our eyes fixed on You through all of life’s circumstances. Please give us confidence to trust in the power of our awesome God, no matter what challenges face us. You are all-powerful and all-wise. We need you precious Lord, because we know that You can do all things. May You be glorified through us 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

You Are A Slave To Whatever Controls You

Ever seen a person change drastically and you called them a brand new person? I once had a friend who was caught in a vast array of medications that different doctors had prescribed. Their behavior was impacted by the side effects and interactions of all the different drugs. However, they went under the controlled, direct care of a team of doctors who stripped away all meds and then introduced only the drugs necessary to treat symptoms. I gained a new friend, because their whole character and countenance changed when they returned home! They were enslaved by all the meds. What controls you?

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-11-08
WRITTEN AT: Ormond Beach, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 2 Peter 2:17-19
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: 17 These people are as useless as dried-up springs or as mist blown away by the wind. They are doomed to blackest darkness. 18 They brag about themselves with empty, foolish boasting. With an appeal to twisted sexual desires, they lure back into sin those who have barely escaped from a lifestyle of deception. 19 They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you.

OBSERVATION: Ever seen a person change drastically and you called them a brand new person? I once had a friend who was caught in a vast array of medications that different doctors had prescribed. Their behavior was impacted by the side effects and interactions of all the different drugs. However, they went under the controlled, direct care of a team of doctors who stripped away all meds and then introduced only the drugs necessary to treat symptoms. I gained a new friend, because their whole character and countenance changed when they returned home! They were enslaved by all the meds. What controls you?

APPLICATION: We look at people such as my friend mentioned above, and we begin to accuse and blame them for the addictions they may have developed. But Scripture today reminded me that way too often we become so caught up in various aspects of our lives, that we become enslaved to them. Some are so engrossed in their work, that they can’t enjoy family, or go on a vacation, or even take a lunch break, because they feel like their job will be incomplete without them. They become so enslaved to their employer that they can no longer entertain social events, or sports, or anything else that would normally help to give them balance. I had a pastor tell me one time that it’s fine if a deacon pays a visit to a hospital patient, but that church member actually expects the pastor to visit. Unfortunately, way too often we feel like the pastor lives for the good of his sheep. But let me remind those pastors that may read this devotional, that you are not exempt from being pulled away from your relationship with Jesus Christ, and becoming enslaved to the church and its members. Pray that God will bless you with good leaders who will stand in your place when your family needs you and when you need a break. I believe that Peter was actually addressing some who were leaders, because their impact on others gave cause for them to stray away from one lifestyle to lead one similar to the leader. Let me encourage you today dear friends, that you need your own personal relationship with Christ, for you can’t slide into heaven because your parents were good strong Christians. God will look at your heart, and the decisions that you have made in your lifetime. You need your own time in the Word of God so that He could speak with you, correct you, and guide you. Yes it’s good to sit under the teaching of a great man of God, but always remember who has the ultimate last word. Always have your Bible and go to the various scriptures while being taught. Prove the teaching and/or preaching based on what the Word of God says. Otherwise, Satan could very well use someone you thought you could trust, to destroy you and distract you. Oh that you would become a slave of Jesus Christ, for all others will only serve to pull you away and carry you down a wrong path. Think about marital relationships. If you are tempted by another of the opposite sex, and you go along with that under the assumption that your spouse would never know. What happens when you return to your spouse? Guilt, fault finding, disloyalty, etc. Can’t you see that the same thing happens when you give in to those things that control you, other than Jesus Christ? Let men encourage you to know Him today; stay true and loyal to Him today; and always stand firm in the commitment you make to worship and serve the risen Lord. He alone is worthy, and He alone holds the keys to eternal life.

PRAYER: Open the eyes of my heart Lord, I want to see You. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to You Lord Jesus, my Rock and my Redeemer. Please help me to do my part in staying true to my commitment to You. May there be no sinful act or person that may pull me away from my walk with You, and may others see Jesus in me every day and through every act, so that others might see and believe in the One True God who always was, and always will 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

How To Improve Your Faith

When I was in the working world, I would have to undergo training for certain new products or programs so that I could help my employer do a good job of introducing our products to our customers. There are also good training seminars and conferences available to church leaders to help them sharpen their skills for the Lord’s work. But seldom do we think about pursuing our life of godliness and looking for ways to enhance our faith. Let’s stop and ponder this thought today based on the Scripture.

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2020-11-09
WRITTEN AT: Ormond Beach, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 2 Peter 1:5-9
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: Do your best to improve your faith. You can do this by adding goodness, understanding, self-control, patience, devotion to God, concern for others, and love. If you keep growing in this way, it will show that what you know about our Lord Jesus Christ has made your lives useful and meaningful. But if you don’t grow, you are like someone who is nearsighted or blind, and you have forgotten that your past sins are forgiven.

OBSERVATION: When I was in the working world, I would have to undergo training for certain new products or programs so that I could help my employer do a good job of introducing our products to our customers. There are also good training seminars and conferences available to church leaders to help them sharpen their skills for the Lord’s work. But seldom do we think about pursuing our life of godliness and looking for ways to enhance our faith. Let’s stop and ponder this thought today based on the Scripture.

APPLICATION: As I read these verses today, I was reminded that, just as a car could move if it had an engine, it is up to the driver to direct it’s path. It is also important for us to look for ways to contribute to our individual walk with, and our faith in, the Lord, so as God fills us with His awesome power, and guides us with His diligent guidance, we might aggressively contribute to a growing faith. and a closer walk with God. Here are seven important qualities that Peter directed us to add to our faith, with God’s help:
1) Goodness – Some translations also refer to this as Moral Excellence. So this revolves more around purity and uprightness of character through our obedience to God. We must aim at fulfilling our God-given purpose in a manner that would be pleasing to God and directed by Him. If we do, others will see us as a ‘good’ person, otherwise we might be called insincere;
2) Understanding – Also referred to as ‘Knowledge’, because the idea here is that the Christian must do all they can to acquire knowledge of God’s Word, and to seek after His guidance for their everyday walk;
3) Self-control – A mastery of self! Be disciplined and strive to control your desires and your passion. Remember that we were born into a wicked world, and because we live in this world we tend to like, imitate and desire the things of this world. The Christian must seek God’s help to help stay focused on, and practice the things of God;
4) Patience – Some translations also refer to this quality as ‘Perseverance’ because God knew how challenging it would be for us to keep on keeping on in spite of adversity. Let’s consider this to be patient endurance in holiness, despite our circumstance or our various tempters. You could see how badly we need God on this one;
5) Devotion to God – This might also be referred to as ‘Godliness’. Now, imagine how important it is to focus on our behavior to ensure that it reflects the character of God, while still living among the wicked;
6) Concern for others – This is also referred to as ‘Brotherly Kindness’. Thoughtful consideration for others, in spite of how they may gossip about you or treat you. Love them like God loves you – unconditionally;
7) Love – The Bible refers to love in various ways, using different Greek words. This particular word refers to the highest form of love – God’s kind of love that seeks the welfare of others ahead of self. Love reaches out to all people, those like you and those who look different. Those who believe like you and those who don’t. Remember, God loved the whole world enough that He sent His Son to die for us. That kind of love. Don’t you know that only God could inspire and help us to love like that?
The Scripture says that if we enhance our faith through adding these qualities – doing our part, then we will become useful and meaningful for the kingdom. I would hate to know that I am just here taking up space and of no worth to those that I meet, won’t you? With God’s help, we can do this friends!

PRAYER: It’s amazing how much You love us Lord, and also how much You care for us and show us how we could be more like You. Thank You for speaking through Your servant Peter to cause us to have a closer look at our faith, something we often take for granted. Lord, we need You each and every day to guide our steps and draw our attention to aligning our life with Yours. Please continue to work on us and give the strength, boldness and desire to draw close to You and Be more like You every day, so that others will be drawn to You. May the seven qualities mentioned in our Scripture become prevalent in 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Stand Firm

T he encouraging words shared by Peter in our verses today are words that we hang on to throughout all aspects of our life. However, the devil is unique in that no individual could come up to his evil standards. But knowing our enemies, always seem to help us be on particular guard while around them. Thank God for the encouraging words at the end of these verses – our God will be in control forever!

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-11-06
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Peter 5:8-11
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack. But you must resist the devil and stay strong in your faith. You know that all over the world the Lord’s followers are suffering just as you are. 10 But God shows undeserved kindness to everyone. That’s why he appointed Christ Jesus to choose you to share in his eternal glory. You will suffer for a while, but God will make you complete, steady, strong, and firm. 11 God will be in control forever! Amen.

OBSERVATION: The encouraging words shared by Peter in our verses today are words that we hang on to throughout all aspects of our life. However, the devil is unique in that no individual could come up to his evil standards. But knowing our enemies, always seem to help us be on particular guard while around them. Thank God for the encouraging words at the end of these verses – our God will be in control forever!

APPLICATION: In football, players are encouraged to always keep their eyes on their opponent. In karate a student is taught that even when they bow, still keep their eyes on their opponent. I’ve heard of several people associating at parties and/or clubs while an evil person drops a type of drug in their drink, and they are often affected for the rest of their lives. Satan is waiting to attack children of his opponent in much the same way as my latter example, so God used His servant Peter to warn us to always be on guard for this. Some of the ways we might do this are: a). Standing firm to what the Bible teaches – God placed these practices and commands in His Book for our own good, and to help guide us through this very challenging life; b). Stand firm to what we were taught at home, at church and by our Christian mentors – People that love us, and especially those who also love God, will look for ways to guide those that are inexperienced in life, or unaware of Satan’s deceiving ways; and c). Stand firm in what our conscience is telling us – God gave us this unique means of making decisions based on all that we have placed into our heart, soul and mind over our lifetime. Because of God’s inspiration, Peter was also aware that we would soon start to feel like we are the only ones going through such trials, and we may even begin to question God as to ‘why me Lord’. So Peter assured us that others face very similar challenges to what we do, therefore stand firm in our faith so that we won’t discourage our fellow believers when we handle situations badly. But friends, let us keep the concluding words (God will be in control forever) fixed in our minds when we feel like Satan has really pushed hard in our lives, and we start to feel like we have been backed into a corner. For I am convinced that neither death, nor tribulations, nor the attempts of Satan will ever separate me from the love of my God, who is in control forever! That’s my God In whom I trust! Do you know Him, my friend?

PRAYER: Oh Lord my God, thank You for Your grace, mercy and understanding. I know that You created us, so You know more about us than anyone else in this world, but I could only imagine that You must often ponder over the stubborn ways of Your children, and how easy it is for us to stray and wander away from the path You have set before us. Please forgive us Lord. We need Your strength and Your guidance each and every day, especially when Satan is bound and determined to get at us and cause us to stumble. Only You can see that coming, and only You love us enough to redirect our path and help us follow Your way. Lord we love You and we need You more and more each day. We rest our hand in Yours knowing that our lives are dependent on You for everything in this life. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Wrap An Apron of Humility Around You

In today’s Scripture, I believe that the answer is given to us on what is required for us to receive the uplifting hand and blessing of our Father. But there is particular action for us to seek after, if we are to receive God’s blessing in this way – humility. Open your heart to God as you reflect on this Scripture with me today as you search for His grace and favor.

DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-11-05
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Peter 5:5-7
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT: ….. In every relationship, each of you must wrap around yourself the apron of a humble servant. Because: God resists you when you are proud but multiplies grace and favor when you are humble.[h] If you bow low in God’s awesome presence,[i] he will eventually exalt you as you leave the timing in his hands. Pour out all your worries and stress upon him and leave them there, for he always tenderly cares for you.[j]

OBSERVATION: In today’s Scripture, I believe that the answer is given to us on what is required for us to receive the uplifting hand and blessing of our Father. But there is particular action for us to seek after, if we are to receive God’s blessing in this way – humility. Open your heart to God as you reflect on this Scripture with me today as you search for His grace and favor.

APPLICATION: To ask for help, we have to come to a clear understanding that there is someone available to help that is more powerful and/or more knowledgeable than we are, and that they may be willing to help us under certain circumstances. We must also acknowledge that the problem is bigger than we could handle ourselves. To do this, you would think that we would be humbled by this overpowering realization, but is that what actually occurs? I am so disappointed at seeing some people with a sense of feeling like the world owes them something in return for all they have done, or given. There are some who demands from others, even if they are the ones in need of help. God said that we are to wrap ourselves with a cloak of humility As we seek His face. Also, God said that He would resist the proud (those who are not humble). I get the impression that God turns His face away from the proud. Ignores their need. We are to envelope ourselves with humility dear ones. I love the way that the Amplified Bible includes the following explanation for humility: demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation. Notice the reminder also that the timing of God’s response is up to Him, and not the instant rate that we will demand. Friends, when we get our priorities straight, and when we recognize who’s in charge, then we may be ready to simply take our burdens to the foot of the cross and leave them there, knowing that our God tenderly cares for us and will answer our prayers in His time in accordance with His will. So with a humble heart, how do you feel like you’re doing in Your relationship with each other, and with your Heavenly Father? Are you cloaked in humility? There is hope my friend, just let go and let God!

PRAYER: Father, we acknowledge that we have no power except from Your power, no intelligence about the future except for our all-knowing God. We are worthless to man because of our inadequacies, but because of You, we are worthy and appreciative of our lives, we know that we can do all things because of You. We have been admonished to bring our burdens to the cross and leave them there. Especially in this year of strange occurrences, we seem to have more burdens than we could ever handle, so Lord we bring our burdens to you and leave them there. Our future is only known to You, so in Your perfect timing, answer our prayers as You see fit, and please guide and direct us through the rest of this year so that You might be lifted up, praised and magnified for Your great works. Thank You Lord Jesus for being my Savior and my 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Be Consumed With What Brings God Pleasure

For the couple who weds, and they are consumed with making their partner happy, they will probably enjoy a long, blessed marriage! So of course this will also be true in friendships, work environments and most of all – in our relationship with our Heavenly Father. To do this you will have to dedicate yourself to seeking God’s will. Let’s look into this today in our study.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-11-04
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Peter 4:1-3
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT:  Since Christ, though innocent, suffered in his flesh for you,[a] now you also must be a prepared soldier,[b] having the same mind-set,[c] for whoever has died in his body is done with sin.[d] 2 So live the rest of your earthly life no longer concerned with human desires but consumed with what brings pleasure to GodFor you have already spent enough time doing what unbelievers[e] love to do—living in debauchery, sensuality, partying, drunkenness, wild drinking parties,[f] and the worship of demons.[g]

OBSERVATION: For the couple who weds, and they are consumed with making their partner happy, they will probably enjoy a long, blessed marriage! So of course this will also be true in friendships, work environments and most of all – in our relationship with our Heavenly Father. To do this you will have to dedicate yourself to seeking God’s will. Let’s look into this today in our study.

APPLICATION: To know what brings pleasure to God, we must realize this means doing His will. May I be the first today to remind you that God’s Word is a compilation of instructions for us to follow, and He expects us to be in obedience to His will for our lives. So this means that it will bring pleasure to God if we know His Word and live in obedience to His laws and commands. It is very important that we take no shortcuts, such as waiting to see what the pastor says, instead of reading the Bible for yourself and diligently seeking God’s will for your life for each day. Why not let the Pastor do his job and teach you the Bible? I believe it is important that you analyze how many churches believe and practice the same thing differently. This means that they understand the Bible differently, or they try to soften the meaning with some of their own personal beliefs. A few cases in point: Baptism – sprinkled; dunked; baby or adult; Day of Worship/Sabbath – Saturday, Sunday or day of your choice; Dancing – yes or no; Pastors – Men only or either gender; etc, etc. The items mentioned will not be further discussed in this devotional, but I would highly recommend that, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, you study the Bible personally and see God’s guidance on what you should do in your efforts to bring pleasure to Him. Please don’t misunderstand me, there is nothing wrong with talking to your pastor for guidance on any biblical subject, but study to show yourself approved as a child of the King. And don’t overlook seeking God’s Help and direction even on what might seem to be small things, for you may very well grow from seeing God respond to those things as well as the very tough decisions that you feel are God-sized. I hope that you will be impacted as much as I was in reading the Scripture today. Imagine that you have spent your whole earthly life doing the things that family, friends and coworkers tell you to try, but when you accept Jesus as Lord, please allow Him to be Lord over everything in your life. Yes you will still have friends, but allow your yes and no responses to be guided by the Holy Spirit, so that you could please God, rather than continuing in the old life of trying to please your friends. The difference will be – that you will begin to look and sound like Jesus, instead of the same old sinful ways of your friends. God created us and He has a life planned for us, but we must listen and be bold enough to obediently follow His commands, if we want to follow His will.

PRAYER: Thank You precious Lord for creating us in Your own image, and for Your guidance each and every day to help us stay on course. Please teach us and remind us every day to seek Your will and to make it a priority, or be consumed with, bringing You pleasure through our obedience. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Do They Know Why You Are Happy?

Ever look across the room and wonder why your coworker has a smirk on their face? I remember hearing my wife ask my daughter, why exactly are you being so nice to me today, are you wanting something? However, in our Scripture today we are warned to not hide the source of our hope, but instead be prepared to share openly, if we are asked about the hope that lies within us. Have you prepared yourself for that? Let’s seek God’s direction on what we might say in response to such a question.

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-11-03
WRITTEN AT: Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Peter 3:13-17
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: 13 If you are always trying to do good, no one can really harm you. 14 But you may suffer for doing right. If that happens, you have God’s blessing. “Don’t be afraid of the people who make you suffer; don’t be worried.”[a] 15 But keep the Lord Christ holy in your hearts. Always be ready to answer everyone who asks you to explain about the hope you have. 16 But answer them in a gentle way with respect. Keep your conscience clear. Then people will see the good way you live as followers of Christ, and those who say bad things about you will be ashamed of what they said. 17 It is better to suffer for doing good than for doing wrong. Yes, it is better if that is what God wants.

OBSERVATION: Ever look across the room and wonder why your coworker has a smirk on their face? I remember hearing my wife ask my daughter, why exactly are you being so nice to me today, are you wanting something? However, in our Scripture today we are warned to not hide the source of our hope, but instead be prepared to share openly, if we are asked about the hope that lies within us. Have you prepared yourself for that? Let’s seek God’s direction on what we might say in response to such a question.

APPLICATION: In as much as our Christian testimony is concerned, I believe that many of us have built up a defense for not sharing our faith. Perhaps fear of additional questions; not imposing our faith on someone else; don’t know enough Scripture to boldly respond; afraid of offending the person who questioned; etc. It’s interesting how Satan builds fear into us to block our desire to share the good news of Jesus Christ! Please try to meditate on exactly what the Scripture says. ‘Be ready to give an account for the hope that lies inside of you’. Suppose that you had received a call saying that you won the sweepstakes. Although you may not have received the check yet, others can easily tell from the glee on your face, and the peace of mind in knowing you could quit work, as evidenced in almost every word you speak. Then someone raises the courage to ask you what prompted the change in your outlook. Would you hesitate telling them? No you may not have all of the answers yet, and you haven’t shown your proof of purchase that supposedly helped you win, but this whole thing has given you a new outlook on life. So moving on to the subject of your faith. A friend introduced you to the good news of Jesus Christ and convinced you that they had been praying for your salvation. Over the past 3 months since that transformation in your life, you have felt so loved by the Creator of the world, so cared for by the Savior of the world, and so directed in every aspect of life by the Holy Spirit, that you find yourself constantly humming the tune to ‘Why Me Lord’. But then a very close friend of yours, who also noticed the change in your life, asks you why? What is it that fills your life with joy each and every day? I need some of that. Will you open your mouth and allow the Holy Spirit to supply the right words, or will you start looking for excuses on how you might wiggle out of this Q&A? May I suggest that you always look for ways to share the Good News, instead of looking for a way to escape such a privilege? Notice how the Scripture tells us that it is better to suffer (if it comes to that) for doing good, than to suffer for doing wrong. You have two ways of looking at that friend who asked you the question: 1). When they kneel alongside of you in heaven, because you shared the joy of Christ that filled your soul; or 2). Look them in the eye outside the gates of heaven and answer them on why you never told them the good news of Jesus Christ. Consider which of those will make your day, and allow that to drive your decision to quickly, humbly and boldly respond positively about your faith. For those who will read this devotional and have not accepted Jesus as Lord yet, I pray that you will never encounter a bashful Christian. May we all be ready to give an account, or an explanation, for the joy that fills our heart. For there is no greater joy than to live in great expectation of being taken home to glory where we will be with Jesus eternally.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord Jesus for those who prayed for me and shared Your love with me while still a sinner. Thank You also for that precious day when I surrendered my life wholly and solely over to You. The joy of knowing You as Lord has been a road filled with joy and expectation for the day when I shall see You face to face. That kind of joy is not suited for keeping bottled up inside, so please fill me with boldness to share my joy, my faith, and the love that I feel from my Savior who loves me, with everyone that I come into contact with – especially those who may ask about the impact on my life. Lord, use me as Your vessel to share the Good News with all who need it. Heaven is real, and it is plenty big enough for all that accept You as Lord. Glorify Yourself today in and through Your messengers who read this devotional and take it to heart. 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. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!