Those Who Love The Father, Also Love His Children

Whenever asked if we really love someone, we try to find ways that might suitably express how the concerned person might publicly see and understand that we love the person, and how much we love them. Sometimes that could be a challenging experience, for it is hard to explain to someone else how much you love someone. Often the recipient of your love will know, but for either of you to express that to a third party presents a challenge. Until now! Please meditate with me on this Scripture and learn first hand how God said that you could show if you are capable of loving others!

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-06-20
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 1 John 5:1-4
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: If you believe that Jesus is the Christ—that he is God’s Son and your Savior—then you are a child of God. And all who love the Father love his children too. So you can find out how much you love God’s children—your brothers and sisters in the Lord—by how much you love and obey God. Loving God means doing what he tells us to do, and really, that isn’t hard at all; for every child of God can obey him, defeating sin and evil pleasure by trusting Christ to help him.

OBSERVATION: Whenever asked if we really love someone, we try to find ways that might suitably express how the concerned person might publicly see and understand that we love the person, and how much we love them. Sometimes that could be a challenging experience, for it is hard to explain to someone else how much you love someone. Often the recipient of your love will know, but for either of you to express that to a third party presents a challenge. Until now! Please meditate with me on this Scripture and learn first hand how God said that you could show if you are capable of loving others!

APPLICATION: Do you love God? How about God’s children, do you love them also? I bet I should have put those questions right at the end of my ’Application’, because by now you have probably answered ‘yes’ to both and about to close out of this devotional! Not So Fast Brother! Wait a moment Sister! Through John, God has actually given us the formula for measuring how well we’re doing on this! We are told in these verses today that the degree to which we love fellow believers is proportionate to how much we love and obey God. Ok, so I’m sure that you will assume you must truly love one another, because you know that you really love God. But do you really?  The Word declares that the love referenced here is not just a verbal thing, or a feeling, but instead if we truly love God, we will do what He tells us to do. For some that will be easy, because we pray and we seek God’s face through His precious Word. When we truly do this and not only listen to His commands, His teachings, His instructions for us, and His example that He set for us to follow, then we should know what to do. Friends, you may not just learn this from the pastor in a weekend sermon, or from a Bible teacher, but to know what Jesus really has in store for you, it is important that you have regular one-on-one communion with your maker. Don’t know where to start? You may want to follow a good devotional, such as the one you’re now reading, or you may want to look for a Bible Reading Plan of your own. Whatever you decide, just remember to seek God’s face first – as it takes the Spirit of God to truly open your eyes to the spiritual truths of our awesome God. Not much of a reader? It doesn’t matter, when you seek God’s face first and ask Him to open your mind to His, you will find that what may appear to be simple words on a page, actually reveals the perfect will of God for your life right where you’re at during that very moment. Highlight as He speaks to you, and make notes to remind you how He spoke to you that day. Now, todays scripture says that through loving God and obeying all that He instructs you, then you will defeat sin and evil pleasures. Your love for God will become so pure and so real, that you will also love everything that God loves and everyone that He loves. So are you struggling with any part of this today friend? Try following this instruction for at least seven days, and I believe God will give you a burning desire to continue doing the same for the rest of the time you remain here on this earth! Love and obedience to God leads to love for the brethren friend! Imagine standing before family and friends at the funeral of your dearest friend and trying to explain to them how much you loved the deceased. There will be many things that you might be inclined to share that may prove you had love for the deceased, but wouldn’t it be mind blowing if you opened this Scripture is simply quoted how God said you could prove your love for others? God being our helper, I pray that we could now more easily show others how much we care, how much we love, and how they could see proof of it, because of our relationship with the God of all love!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You not only tell us to love one another, but You have even gone the extra step of showing us just how to accomplish that. How unfortunate, that a God who sacrificed His only Son for us on Calvary, must now tell us how important it is for us to love You. How deep the Father’s love for us, in spite of our unworthiness. Yet how easy it is for us to say that we struggle in loving our Christian Brothers and Sisters, even when we don’t fully appreciate the love of our Father, or see fit to obey His simple commands. Please forgive us dear Lord and continue to draw us to Yourself with an even deeper determination to love and obey You. I sincerely thank You for Your love, and for all these things I have asked throughout this devotional, for it is in the precious and loving name of Jesus that I ask, 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 encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

Describe How BIG Or Awesome Your God Is

If you were preparing your heart to meet with someone, to encourage them, and to really share the power and the width and the breadth of your God, where would you begin? When you prepare yourself to kneel at the feet of Jesus and place your petitions before Him, how convinced are you that He could handle your needs? In verse 31 of this same chapter, Isaiah shares the following: But those who trust in the Lord will become strong again. They will be like eagles that grow new feathers. They will run and not get weak. They will walk and not get tired.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-05-27
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Isaiah 40:12–14
Translation: Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: 12 Who measured the oceans in the palm of his hand? Who used his hand to measure the sky? Who used a bowl to measure all the dust of the earth? Who used scales to measure the mountains and hills? 13 Who could know the Lord’s mind? Who could be his teacher or give him advice? 14 Did the Lord ask for anyone’s help? Did anyone teach him to be fair? Did anyone teach him knowledge? Did anyone teach him to be wise?

OBSERVATION: If you were preparing your heart to meet with someone, to encourage them, and to really share the power and the width and the breadth of your God, where would you begin?  When you prepare yourself to kneel at the feet of Jesus and place your petitions before Him, how convinced are you that He could handle your needs? In verse 31 of this same chapter, Isaiah shares the following: But those who trust in the Lord will become strong again. They will be like eagles that grow new feathers. They will run and not get weak. They will walk and not get tired.

APPLICATION: Friends, this scripture today is intended to remind us that no matter how burdened we are about circumstances, or about our needs, or about our finances, or how needy we or our family members really are, we have a great BIG awesome God who has successfully managed to handle a whole lot more than any ‘mountain’ we may be facing today! There are over 100,000 deaths in the USA from Covid, many are worried as to who will be next. Many of us have relatives in the hospital and we are beside ourselves worrying about how remaining families might survive if that hospitalized individual is never discharged alive. But let me encourage you to stop for a moment, dear friend, and look at the examples given by Isaiah in verses 12-14 above. Let it really sink in, and convince yourself once again of the supernatural God who loves you, who cares for you, who ‘goes to bat’ every day for you, and be reminded that there is nothing too big for Him. Furthermore, I pray that each of you will ask God to illumine your heart and your mind, so that you may be reminded of all that He has done for you already in life; that He loves you individually; and that more than anything God is so looking forward to having you join Him in glory someday soon. Friend of God, I believe that when you are able to look beyond your current problems and challenges, and see the outstretched, loving hands of Jesus ready to welcome you home for all eternity, then you will be able to trust Him in full confidence with everything that is currently before you! You see, no matter what Satan may try to tell us, or frighten us with today, we KNOW in whom we have believed, and we KNOW whose we are, and we KNOW who hold every tomorrow in place for us! We are children of the King and regardless of our current situation, our long range plan outweighs everything we might experience here on earth, because nothing is greater than the love of our Savior for His dear children. So don’t hold back friend, take your needs before God and be ready to praise Him as you evidence His hand at work in miraculous ways. Share that confidence with those who have no hope! Be ready to give good examples of how awesome Your God has been to you, and all that you have to look forward to! He’s just  t h a t  BIG, dear friend!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, we bow before You in adoration of who You are, and for all You have done for us. Though so unworthy, still I’m a child of the King! Praise be to my almighty, all-powerful, ever-loving, incredibly great BIG God! Please continue to bless Your kids again today, especially since we have been reminded of your outstanding power and the magnitude of Your awesome love. Oh that we may see Your power at work in the lives of those that we touch today! We will be eternally grateful dear God, for we ask these things in faith, and through the powerful name of our almighty Savior, 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 encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

Tell Them Everything God Has Done For You

Perhaps a more appropriate title for this devotional today may have been ‘What’s your excuse?’. So many Christians today seek God, and they receive a touch from Him, or a bold miracle is performed, but their household family or next door neighbors are unaware that anything happened to them. However, in today’s Scripture we read about a man filled with demons, and those demons were miraculously eradicated. Will neighbors notice? Most definitely! Will they know what potion or spell actually worked to remove the demons? Perhaps not. As we meditate on this today, I want us to think of the times that God brought healing to our bodies, and why didn’t we tell the world about it?

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-05-16
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Luke 8:38–39
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: 38 The man who had been freed from the demons begged to go with him. But Jesus sent him home, saying, 39 “No, go back to your family, and tell them everything God has done for you.” So he went all through the town proclaiming the great things Jesus had done for him.

OBSERVATION: Perhaps a more appropriate title for this devotional today may have been ‘What’s your excuse?’. So many Christians today seek God, and they receive a touch from Him, or a bold miracle is performed, but their household family or next door neighbors are unaware that anything happened to them. However, in today’s Scripture we read about a man filled with demons, and those demons were miraculously eradicated. Will neighbors notice? Most definitely! Will they know what potion or spell actually worked to remove the demons? Perhaps not. As we meditate on this today, I want us to think of the times that God brought healing to our bodies, and why didn’t we tell the world about it?

APPLICATION: I wonder how many friends will be told that you went to church this weekend? How about the message that you garnered from the Word of God during your daily devotions? What about the touch of your Master during the Praise and Worship time? Are you feeling healed today of something you and your church members prayed about? Will you be brave enough to share that with critics at work today? In our scripture story today we read where Jesus healed a man of demon possession, and we see where he was excited and ready to board a boat and travel with Jesus to continue spreading the story of his salvation. Instead Jesus asked the man to go and share his story with his family. The man was way too excited to just tell his own family, so he went all throughout the town telling his story. Let’s put this into perspective. I challenged you at the beginning to share your worship experience with your coworkers today, and especially any extraordinary interactions with Jesus from your weekend. I believe I saw some dirty looks from some of you, but I still want to take that a step further and ask you to share your experience with a store clerk, or a waitress! Isn’t it interesting how we find it easier to share information about a movie we saw or an event in our child’s life, but not about the miracle, a miraculous event, that occurred when the Savior of the world reached down in love and touched a sinner such as we are? A total transformation, yet we don’t want to offend our friends by sharing our good news with them? Friends, I am convinced that if it’s in us, it will come out of us! Our genuine experiences with God will impact our lives and everyone will notice! Perhaps if we are ashamed to share the blessings God has showered on us, He should withdraw those blessings and give them to someone who will openly share the Good News with others! What is our hang up? Why would we be embarrassed? It happened to us! Why would we fear having the right words for message we have to share? It was a personal experience! If we are intimidated by our friends and afraid to share our story, did we forget that this is a personal experience and not one that we may have mistakenly overheard from a friend? Jesus is alive my friend, and He wants us to be open in sharing our experiences with our Father! This is first-hand experience, so definitely nothing that could be manufactured. Unless you tell your story, a friend may never know about your Lord, and may wind up in Hell for having never accepted the Lord Jesus as their personal Savior.

PRAYER: The privilege of being touched by the God of this universe is much more news-worthy than anything else that could possibly hit the front page of the paper today! Please forgive us Lord for placing you in a ‘forbidden box’ when it comes to sharing our experiences with others. I believe that others will be convinced of Your power and Your love, when they see us excited about it and they hear us bubbling over with the glory of having been in Your presence. Please embolden us with great power so that we will not be ashamed of the gospel, but will gladly share how it has impacted our lives. May others see Jesus, because of their encounter with us today. I ask these things in the wonderful and miraculous name of the One who saved me from my sin, Jesus 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. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

Show Mercy & Snatch Friends From Danger

I was reminded of a popular old hymn entitled ‘Rescue the Perishing’ as I read this Scripture today, and with everyone locked in and caring about themselves, and possibly their significant other, I wonder how soon we will return to the idea of caring about others, and trying to rescue them from the path on which they are headed. Without the Lord Jesus Christ, one is headed to a dark and burning Hell, but we are called on to rescue them by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Oh that we would have mercy on those we care about, like God had for us.

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-05-02
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Jude 1:20–23
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love. And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.

OBSERVATION: I was reminded of a popular old hymn entitled ‘Rescue the Perishing’ as I read this Scripture today, and with everyone locked in and caring about themselves, and possibly their significant other, I wonder how soon we will return to the idea of caring about others, and trying to rescue them from the path on which they are headed. Without the Lord Jesus Christ, one is headed to a dark and burning Hell, but we are called on to rescue them by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Oh that we would have mercy on those we care about, like God had for us.

APPLICATION: Interesting how God used Jude to not only share this with his church as he prepared to leave them, but also to have this included in His Word for our ongoing benefit. Friends, have you ever stopped and thought real good about the folk that God directs your way for your weekend services? They are looking to escape the cruelty and hatred of their world, and hoping to find the opposite at your church – God’s House. As they walk in, some might look them up and down because their dress code may not be quite like that of your regular church membership, or perhaps they may not have had water turned on at their place, and able to take a shower. I’m hoping that you too may have been touched by this Scripture from Jude. Let’s examine it closely: “Pray in the power of the Holy Spirit”, in other words don’t depend on feelings, or personal ideal you have established, but consider praying under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that is alive in you. I believe God, through His Holy Spirit, will direct your thoughts to be better aligned with His thoughts, so that you might see the heart of that visitor to your church, or that person trying to befriend you, without being impacted by any personal feelings. Fill yourself with God’s Holy Spirit and you will speak His words without having to worry about saying something that may otherwise upset someone. You will quickly see the spiritual need of the individual without being distracted by, or worrying about their immediate physical needs. Friends, Jude also goes on to encourage us to deal with believers from a Spirit filled heart. This is where we show mercy and love towards a Brother who is drifting away and not always living up to the mark. Satan is working seriously on the person and unless you intervene and gently speak to, and love on that person, they will be torn away by the forces of evil. In fact, it will be just like you are snatching that weaker Brother or Sister from the flames of Satan and his wicked and evil judgment. Please focus on the heart today friend. The words and the actions may appear ugly and extremely sinful, but as the heart of the individual is touched, the outside stuff will be cleaned up as they invite God in. At the end of the day, this also helps you to reconcile with God about where your heart is. Interested in the restoration of a soul for Christ, or satisfied to look on in pity as they drift off into eternity with Satan and his demons. People need the Lord, my friend, and unless you tell them about your loving, precious Savior who died and rose again for the forgiveness of your sin, they may never be introduced to your Friend. If they were drowning, or if they were in a burning house, you wouldn’t think twice about snatching them to safety. Please join me as we try to do the same for those who are in danger of dying with hope.

PRAYER: Lord, this is serious business for Your children, for our words and our actions can either serve to help restore one who has fallen, or one who is desperately looking for a better way, OR we could totally turn them off from ever wanting to know You at all. That’s quite a responsibility Lord Jesus, however we have been reminded that we must become better aligned with You, so that Your Holy Spirit may lead us to snatch them from danger of eternal death. My readers and I need You Lord Jesus, because we tend to be so critical of those that just don’t seem to have their act together quite as good as we think we do. Please forgive us for acting this way, for we have seen so often that mankind will fail in and of their own merits. Only things that are done for Jesus will last, and only things directed by Your Holy Spirit will lead to spiritual goodness that could be used for Your glory. Please have Your will and way in our lives this day, Oh Lord. For I ask these things in the all-powerful name of Jesus, 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. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

A Stronger Faith

DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-04-23
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 2 Peter 1:4-8
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: … by that same mighty power he has given us all the other rich and wonderful blessings he promised; for instance, the promise to save us from the lust and rottenness all around us, and to give us his own character.   But to obtain these gifts, you need more than faith; you must also work hard to be good, and even that is not enough. For then you must learn to know God better and discover what he wants you to do. Next, learn to put aside your own desires so that you will become patient and godly, gladly letting God have his way with you. This will make possible the next step, which is for you to enjoy other people and to like them, and finally you will grow to love them deeply. The more you go on in this way, the more you will grow strong spiritually and become fruitful and useful to our Lord Jesus Christ.

OBSERVATION: It is obvious from this Scripture that mankind can live at peace with our God, if we turn our selfish, sinful selves away from the worldly desires and commit to serving the God who created us, and loves us beyond anything we could imagine. He even has a home prepared already for those who have accepted Him as Lord, so we really have so much to be thankful for here on earth now, and something to look forward to In Heaven! Peace on earth, and even more peace in Heaven, as we graduate from this world to the next. Let’s examine our faith today as we meditate together.

APPLICATION: We are reminded that God has showered His rich and wonderful blessings on us and He is doing everything possible to form us more and more into His character. However, there is work for us to do, so that He might have freedom to work in our lives, and mold us into His likeness. I believe these additional qualities help us to be devoted to our calling and gives God opportunity to respond in marvelous ways to help us attain His ultimate plan for us. Can you imagine us accomplishing anything by just sitting back and allowing someone to do it for us? Don’t you know that the more we are involved in something, the more that we ‘buy-in’ on the idea and the more committed we are to the end result? So let’s look closely at some of the things we are told to work on:

  1. We need more faith – Remember, Jesus told Peter about his lack of faith when he took his eyes off the Master.  Remember that James said that our good deeds and our actions will prove our faith. Friends, if we say we have it, then our lives should reflect it!
  2. We must work hard to be good – moral excellence
  3. We must be studious in knowing more about God – get in the Word for yourself. Get to know as much as possible about the Savior who gave up His very life so that you might live eternally with the Father!
  4. We must ‘dig deep’ and discover what God wants us to do – The only way to be obedient to the will of God is to go before Him in daily prayer and study His Word for all that He will guide us to do.
  5. We must put aside our own desires and be more subjective to God’s will for our lives – Often you will find that the worldly things that you want to do is opposed to what you might discern that the Word of God wants you to do. Be willing to put aside your personal agenda so that you might be totally obedient to God.
  6. Enjoy other people and grow to love them deeply – When the love of God is deeply entrenched in you, then you will begin to love His people. When you grow to desire all that God desires, your love for others will grow as deep as God’s love for them. Remember how much He loves them? He sacrificed everything for their eternal welfare! Glory to God for loving us that much!!

Our reward: We will grow stronger spiritually AND become fruitful and useful for our Lord!
Is it worth it all? I desire to commit fully to all that God teaches and directs me to do, including all of the above. I hope that you will do the same!!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for showing me the way to the Father, and thank You for sacrificing Your very life so that I might have the only avenue opened for me to one day see You in heaven. I pray that my readers, my family and my friends might find this same peace today! Please continue to direct our path so that we might grow in our faith; in the knowledge of Your Word; and with unhindered obedience of Your will for our lives. Thank You Lord Jesus! AMEN!

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

Transformed Relationships

Often times we will read about ways to, and often we are encouraged to, transform our lives into one that aligns with the will of God and in obedience of the Holy Spirit. Paul encourages us to meditate also on how these transformed lives will look to those that we connect with and call our friends. Perhaps you might be willing to join me in looking deeply into our personal relationships with others, and whether there is evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work within us as we fellowship with each other. Paul gives great guidance to us, so let’s dig in…

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-04-14
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 12:9-12
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: Let the inner movement of your heart always be to love one another, and never play the role of an actor wearing a mask. Despise evil and embrace everything that is good and virtuous. 10 Be devoted to tenderly loving your fellow believers as members of one family. Try to outdo yourselves in respect and honor of one another. 11 Be enthusiastic to serve the Lord, keeping your passion toward him boiling hot! Radiate with the glow of the Holy Spirit and let him fill you with excitement as you serve him.
12 Let this hope burst forth within you, releasing a continual joy. Don’t give up in a time of trouble,[e] but commune with God at all times.

OBSERVATION: Often times we will read about ways to, and often we are encouraged to, transform our lives into one that aligns with the will of God and in obedience of the Holy Spirit. Paul encourages us to meditate also on how these transformed lives will look to those that we connect with and call our friends. Perhaps you might be willing to join me in looking deeply into our personal relationships with others, and whether there is evidence of the Holy Spirit’s work within us as we fellowship with each other. Paul gives great guidance to us, so let’s dig in…

APPLICATION: Often times we struggle in relationships, both with family members and with friends. For there is jealousy between one another and envy and hard feelings that could quickly result, in fact, to the extent that we can’t stand to be in each other’s presence. Coworkers tend to be so competitive to reach for the top, or earn more commissions and/or recognition, so they step right over another employee, and may even do certain things to prevent that coworker from doing their best. Church members want to be in charge, or favored by the pastor, or perhaps they just can’t have their own way, so we see churches split or families leave the church and move on to another. I wonder if the result would be any different if we were to follow the advice of Paul in these two verses? Friends, Christians are to be deep into the Word at every opportunity, but not less frequently than daily, looking over God’s instructions to be sure that we live and love like Him. You see, God’s Word contains our template for love, it tells us about our Role Model, Jesus Christ. Our responsibility according to the Word, is to go and minister to the world so that all may know Jesus. Don’t you know that we are actually teaching them our evil ways when we act like the world, or like the above examples? Remember, our actions speak so loud that others will rarely hear what we are saying to them. I believe Paul is saying that we are not to be hypocritical. If we claim Jesus as Lord, then we are to live like Him and seek to squash all evil thoughts that Satan will buffet us with. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, we will seek to act like Jesus. and in no way follow the path of least resistance that are led by Satan – whose aim is to kill, steal and destroy the work of God. Friends, Jesus is coming soon and we must live with that in mind. Don’t dare live like the devil and think you’ll have time to seek forgiveness when you hear that Jesus is coming down the street. The Bible says that we must live in a state of readiness, because Jesus in no way needs our permission that the coast is clear for Him to come and gather His bride (the church – us). This means that we are to live and love like Jesus demands of us today. Don’t delay, please?

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, the creator of love, the One who showed ultimate love, please forgive me for making a mockery of living and loving like You exampled for me. You showed me how to live, and I have totally blown it. Thank You for Your servant Paul, who has reminded us that we need to live and love in ways that others might recognize as an imitation of God. This is impossible to achieve, as long as we continue to give in to the ways of this world. Father, please give my readers and I strength to be true victors in living our lives according to the model You displayed. Please help us to stay so in tuned with Your Word that it will not only impact the words from our lips, but the desires of our heart and the actions of our whole being. Lord, sadly, we must confess that we have ‘Christian’ family and friends that are living in sin, because they are acting just like Satan, and in similar ways to the above examples given. Please use this devotional today to speak to the hearts of those claiming You as Lord. Please also speak to those who have not yet accepted You as Lord, for today is the day of salvation, and there is no better time than today for them to seek Your power and Your strength so that they too might live and love like You. Lord, this old world is getting in extremely poor shape morally, for folk are becoming more and more hardened to their sin. Please, I beg You, do a mighty work in Your people today. Begin with us, Christians. Get us straight first, so that we may be Your hands and Your feet on the ground seeking to impact the lives of those that don’t know You. These things I ask humbly in Your precious name and for Your sake, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Tested and Tried – Joy Comes in the Morning!

Often we will purchase a used car, or a previously owned home, because we want to make sure that all the bugs have been discovered and repaired, rather than us being faced with the challenges. Christians who face challenges in life, will often look to the Bible for similar examples, so they could be comforted by the resolution that occurred. Despite what the world may feel about the absence of struggles for the child of God, Peter shares in our Scripture today that yes, trials will come, but we serve a God who is much bigger than all of our trials. Currently, the whole world is facing a huge challenge/trial. Let’s meditate on Peter’s word today and be comforted in the power of our awesome God!

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-04-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 1 Peter 1:6–7
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 6 So be truly glad! There is wonderful joy ahead, even though the going is rough for a while down here. 7 These trials are only to test your faith, to see whether or not it is strong and pure. It is being tested as fire tests gold and purifies it—and your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold; so if your faith remains strong after being tried in the test tube of fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day of his return.

OBSERVATION: Often we will purchase a used car, or a previously owned home, because we want to make sure that all the bugs have been discovered and repaired, rather than us being faced with the challenges. Christians who face challenges in life, will often look to the Bible for similar examples, so they could be comforted by the resolution that occurred. Despite what the world may feel about the absence of struggles for the child of God, Peter shares in our Scripture today that yes, trials will come, but we serve a God who is much bigger than all of our trials. Currently, the whole world is facing a huge challenge/trial. Let’s meditate on Peter’s word today and be comforted in the power of our awesome God!

APPLICATION: Peter tells his audience, and us, that there is a good chance that we will go through certain trials in our life, and this may really serve to prove whose we are, based on our response and reaction. Do you feel like Peter must have had some insight into 2020 in your part of the world, seeing that we are all facing the greatest challenge of our lifetime? Friends, isn’t it true that we find it extremely easy to worship God when everything is going like we expect, or want? Isn’t it true that we tend to feel like God really loves us when life is good and everything is going well? Conversely, don’t we tend to wonder if God has turned His face on us, or developed a deaf ear to us, when things are going poorly, even after much prayer on our part? I understand that certain religions feel like something is wrong if Satan is not using his forces to attack them – because they tend to wonder then if they are truly doing everything the Lord desires of them. While this may sound far-fetched, have you stopped to think that there is probably little in common between the believer and the non-believer? Shouldn’t this mean that there is a great divide between the two, and a strong sense of uneasiness between the two? I can assure you that Satan is very actively pushing his followers to aggravate believers, to tempt us, to push us to the limit, to test us beyond anything that he thinks we could handle on our own. So Peter is warning us that when these tests come, and when we feel the fiery trials target us, we must be confident in whom we believe. Yes, our current trial (Covid 19) is impacting believers and unbelievers, so many will question where God is at in a time like this. Let me encourage you dear friend, to be prayed up and united with the One in whom we believe and look to for our strength. We must always be aware that we are incapable of fighting in the fire all by ourselves, for it is only when we are in full armor and fully empowered by the Holy Spirit, that we can be victorious over Satan and his attacks. Remember, Satan has no need to heat up the battle for his own, he already has control of them, so we are prime targets for Satan. We can overcome, and be victorious, when we are actually as close to our Master as the mention of His name. Are you ready for battle today? May I encourage you to draw near to God and allow Him to draw near to you – with total protection against the evil one! Always be prepared friend! Prepared not just for the trials that will come your way, but also to be a strong and mighty tower for our Master. Many are questioning God during these times, and Satan is tempting them to question if our God really exists. Please be reminded that it was God who caused the sun to rise this morning, and gave us life to stand erect this morning. Regardless of life’s circumstances, God still stands strong and He is always able and willing to deal with life here on earth, while we wait for His return. He’s still God, my friend! Know Him today and know the peace that surpasses all human understanding.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You alone have the power to fight the evil one. Please help us to remember that each day, so that we might plug into the power source that will guard and protect us when evil comes. We acknowledge that we can’t handle the fiery trials that Satan will send our way, so we need You more today than ever before. My fellow believers and I want to come through this life victorious and standing firm in our faith, but we need You in everything we do dear Lord. Please be our guide, protector and strong deliverer today, and help us to stand firm in our faith. Our world needs Jesus, which is especially evident now as panic strikes over the uncontrollable virus that is hitting our world. You’re still in control, and we still need You, precious Lord. We commit ourselves to You anew. May Your will be done and Your kingdom come at just the right time! 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 encourage you to visit my home church, 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!

This Life of Contradictions

I was happy to be reminded of the struggle that Paul faced, because it is very prevalent in my life. And because I’m pretty sure that you have not attained perfection yet either, I believe that it is probably the same in your life. We struggle daily with having the good intentions of doing what pleases God, yet plagued with the temptations, ill feelings and conniving of this wicked world in which we live. In fact, way too often we tend to walking right out of our prayer closets and immediately follow the trend of what the world is doing around us.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-04-01
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 7:21-25
Translation: The Message (Message)

Bible Text: 21    …The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge. 24          I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?
25          The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.

OBSERVATION: I was happy to be reminded of the struggle that Paul faced, because it is very prevalent in my life. And because I’m pretty sure that you have not attained perfection yet either, I believe that it is probably the same in your life. We struggle daily with having the good intentions of doing what pleases God, yet plagued with the temptations, ill feelings and conniving of this wicked world in which we live. In fact, way too often we tend to walking right out of our prayer closets and immediately follow the trend of what the world is doing around us.

APPLICATION: Like Paul, we especially look back at our day and sometimes say that we are ‘at the end of our rope’ with mere efforts and ‘want-to’s’ and we wonder if there is anything that could be done. I absolutely love verse 25 where Paul reminds us that the answer to this dilemma is Jesus Christ. For He died for us even while we were yet sinners and still persecuting Him. We find it extremely frustrating when we have committed to obedience to God’s Word, when we have every intention to follow the ways of God, yet we are so easily swayed to follow the ways of our old lifestyle, the joys of our friends and neighbors, and to be popular in their eyes. However in our Scripture today we are given the formula, or the solution, or the answer to our lives of contradictions. Like an alcoholic seeking to overcome that dreaded disease, we must first acknowledge that we have a problem. Our education is of no help to us, nor is our strength from personal workouts. In fact, we can’t seem to personally overcome this type of life. However, the Word of God reminds us that greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world. So do we dare look into God’s face and say that the sin within us is greater? If we do say that, we are actually saying that he that is in the world is greater than He that is in me, and that’s an incorrect statement. Friends, let’s be careful to give God full freedom in our lives so that He could be our God. Satan is very conniving and can easily take advantage of our personal weaknesses, but he has no power over our God! Amen? Today let us put Satan in his place – behind God. Let’s give God thanks for being our deliverer from the evil of this world; let’s praise Him for send His Son Jesus to provide the means of us getting to Heaven and enjoying life everlasting in Him. He cares for us, dear child of God and He wants to see us succeed in our commitment to Him. If you truly want to succeed in your commitment to God, ask for His help and His strength, and through His power, be willing to give it all that your have. For I truly believe that greater is He that is in us, than he that is in the world.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I need You today. I battle the same challenges that Paul battled, and I need the same help that he did. You have shown me in Your Word how to live. You have set the example for me through the life and character of Your precious Son. Please work steadfastly in my life so that I may overcome the negative pull of the evil one, the sinful nature of this world and the ungodly attitudes of many that I come into contact with. Please touch the hearts of Your people today, so that we may have power to overcome evil, and that we may live according to Your perfect will and design. You are holy, oh God, and if we are to be followers of Your precious Son, then we too must strive for holiness. Thank You for being the source of that power that we need to live like this! For I ask all this in Your most holy name, Jesus 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. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

When God Leaves us Alone

I thank God that we can turn to His Word for every situation in our lives. Based on this passage of scripture, it is evident that Paul faced the same evil with the Romans as many pastors do today. I would dare say that one of the most challenging things about any job involving coworkers, or just people in general, is the matter of bad attitudes, jealousy, gossip, fighting, lying and just thinking the worst of each other. The exact characteristics that Paul spoke of! So let’s look closer at what Paul said was the root cause of these problems.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2020-03-18
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: Romans 1:28-30
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: 28 People did not think it was important to have a true knowledge of God. So God left them and allowed them to have their own worthless thinking and to do things they should not do. 29 They are filled with every kind of sin, evil, selfishness, and hatred. They are full of jealousy, murder, fighting, lying, and thinking the worst about each other. They gossip 30 and say evil things about each other.

OBSERVATION: I thank God that we can turn to His Word for every situation in our lives. Based on this passage of scripture, it is evident that Paul faced the same evil with the Romans as many pastors do today. I would dare say that one of the most challenging things about any job involving coworkers, or just people in general, is the matter of bad attitudes, jealousy, gossip, fighting, lying and just thinking the worst of each other. The exact characteristics that Paul spoke of! So let’s look closer at what Paul said was the root cause of these problems.

APPLICATION: I believe that every person alive knows of God, and knows of His power, His love, and His creation. For some, it begins with them having a desire to know more of God, learn His teachings, and a strong desire to know Him more intimately. For others, they often choose to know Him from a distance and just leave Him out of their lives until needed. This is very evident today for we are suffering from declining church attendance because people have lost the desire to know God more intimately. Friends, God will not force Himself on us, however He is available to us if we seek Him and have a desire to draw close to Him. As we turn away from Him and He lifts His hand of love and protection from us, we assume more of the characteristics and attitudes of the world, such as those listed in our Scripture. So what we really face today is like Paul faced back in his day, we the people, need God in a personal way in our individual lives each and every day. More of God will result in less of the world and its evil characteristics. There is an old hit song titled something like “All we Need is Love”. I believe that the formula for much of today’s worldly characteristics that have crept upon us, is a plea to God along the lines of the popular hit song that may have the title – “All we Need is God”. Paul presented this thought for us in the scripture written under the inspiration of God, so that we may realize what is lacking when we notice the decline in moral values and Godly attributes that tend to bring us down as a people. For this relationship with God idea impacts each and every one of us. For those who work, you can see it in the attitudes and actions of coworkers. For those who shop, you can see it in the store employees and in the shoppers. Everywhere we turn we can see, like Paul, what impacts an individual’s character. Friends, it is critical that we awaken ourselves from our sinful, sleepy stupor and get our lives in line with God and His perfect will for our lives. As we take in more of God, we will replace our ungodly attitudes and character with the wonderful message of the cross and our loving Savior. I would strongly urge each one to look to the Master, our Creator, the one and only Jesus Christ, while there is still time. Life is more challenging that any of us could handle alone, we need Jesus, friends. As a reality check, we must look at our lives and insure that we are an image of God and not of this sinful world in which we live.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, we are such weak examples of You, because we have allowed so much of this sinful world in. Please forgive me for not doing more to saturate my life with You and Your divine qualities. Thank You for reminding me of this today. Please guide me into Your way, and please touch the hearts of Your children reading this devotional today so that we may become stronger witnesses and soldiers of Yours here on this earth. Lord, we want to do Your will. We need You in our lives – more than ever before. We can’t even imagine what our destiny would be if You turned Your face from us. We’re Yours Lord, and we want to be the best representative that we could be. We need You to guide and direct us, please? I ask all this in Your precious and holy name, Lord Jesus, our Healer and Sustainer of all 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. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Turn to God For Unconditional Love!

Thursday, 2020-02-27

Bible Reference: Titus 2:11–14
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: God’s readiness to give and forgive is now public. Salvation’s available for everyone! We’re being shown how to turn our backs on a godless, indulgent life, and how to take on a God-filled, God-honoring life. This new life is starting right now, and is whetting our appetites for the glorious day when our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, appears. He offered himself as a sacrifice to free us from a dark, rebellious life into this good, pure life, making us a people he can be proud of, energetic in goodness.

OBSERVATION: Ever heard a spouse, or a girlfriend or boyfriend say to their partner “And you did that for me?” You know – they are in shock that someone loves them enough to make a sacrifice on their behalf, just because they love them? It tends to put a whole new level of trust in that person, and a strong belief in your relationship! Suddenly you realize that they must truly love you! In our scripture today, Paul wants Titus to center his message around the love that Jesus showed for all who heard him preach. A message still very relevant today dear friend!

APPLICATION:  it seems like Paul felt it was important for the ministry of Titus that no matter what he felt the people already knew about Jesus, that he should remind them again that there is no secret about how much God loves them, and about the awesome sacrifice Jesus made at Calvary to prove His love for them. I feel compelled to share with you today the same message given to Titus, for it seems like depression in our friends and family is worsening, and impacting even children today. Don’t you realize friend that no matter how undeserving you may feel, there is only one place where you can look, or depend on for unconditional, everlasting love? It’s not on the internet, not in the nightclubs or local bars, or those friends who find answers in all the wrong places. God is ready to forgive you, and give you eternal life, filled with His wonderful love that is beyond human understanding or description? Don’t you know that you can be saved from your life of sin and disregard of God and take on a blessed, God-filled and God-honoring life? Don’t you know that this new life can begin right now, even though it may only be a sampling of the glorious life you will enjoy with Jesus when you leave this world that is so saturated with sin? Don’t you know that in spite of your present tendency to be mean and unforgiving towards others, that God will make you into a person energized in goodness? Friends, the above is not just vain promises that this Brother is offering to entice you into a relationship with God, although I wish there would be such an enticement possible, but I have merely expanded on the actual scripture written by Paul under the leadership and direction of the Holy Spirit. Please consider allowing that same Holy Spirit to guide you in your decisions today friend!

PRAYER: Father, You are merciful and so forgiving. For while we were still sinners, You went to the cross of Calvary as a statement of Your love for us, and faced public shame and disgrace by the same folk that You would later forgive them of their sin. Unfortunately we are no better than most of them that tortured You that dark day, because in spite of Your love for us, yet we openly sin and disgrace Your precious name. Please consider once again forgiving us of our sin dear Lord. Please go to the extreme once again to melt our hardened hearts and convince us of our sin and our need for the Savior. Lord, I pray that You would have Your perfect way in our lives today and in the lives of those that we love. May this be the day of salvation for many who will read this devotional today, I pray this in the precious name of Jesus, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!