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

Posts tagged ‘Draw me close’

That All May Know

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Romans 11:25-26; 33-34 (TLB)

TEXT: 25 I want you to know about this truth from God, dear brothers, so that you will not feel proud and start bragging. Yes, it is true that some of the Jews have set themselves against the Gospel now, but this will last only until all of you Gentiles have come to Christ—those of you who will. 26 And then all Israel will be saved…..

33 Oh, what a wonderful God we have! How great are his wisdom and knowledge and riches! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his methods! 34 For who among us can know the mind of the Lord? ……

OBSERVATION:   In our first few verses, Paul showed the people how God had turned some of the Jews off from the Gospel, so that the Gentiles would have a better opportunity of accepting Him. And although that was only temporary, it served the specific intention of God. In the latter verses Paul is celebrating the wisdom of God as he reflects back. Could this be what God is doing to the church today?

APPLICATION:   As I meditate on the Word of God, it never ceases to amaze me on His great wisdom, and His awesome power to fulfill His Godly purpose. This particular Scripture has reminded me of a sad story that brought awesome results. Many years ago, my cousin, a young man about 35 years old, was electrocuted and fell to his death from a roadside electric pole. The mourning of that mother, my aunt, could be heard over most of the small town. However, before the sun set the following day, my dad (brother to the grieving mother) had surrendered his heart to Jesus! He then became a Godly influence to his five children until the day he died. What happened in this Scripture today, also reminds me an awful lot of America today, for it almost seems like the movement of Christ has been slowed down and possibly even dwindled some, and I wonder if it is not God dealing more intensely in the hearts of so many that are totally lost. I know, it doesn’t seem to make sense to you, right? Well friend, I hate to say it, but our wisdom is nothing compared to the wisdom of our awesome God. The Bible reminds us that His ways and thoughts are way beyond our own, so that tells me that I can’t possibly understand all that He is up to. However, I know from the Word that God made us all to worship and adore Him, yet we hate to look at the evening news for all of the crime and acts of hatred that fills our news portals, while churches are closing their doors because of non-attendance, lack of giving and leadership. Friends, we know that Jesus is coming back soon to collect His church. Can you even fathom how few will be taken up to glory with Him, compared to the huge population of earth? To the church, I would say with great urgency that people need the Lord. The Gentile population has grown, and unless we who are Christian, stand firm in our faith, lift up the banner of God so that the lost may recognize God in His greatness and accept Him as Lord, then there will be a massive divide on the day that Christ returns to take His bride away with Him. I have family and friends that I believe will be left behind if they remain unchanged. Assuming that many of you are in a similar position, I would encourage you to join me in praying to the God of this universe for a great movement upon our land. Oh that Jesus may rule and reign in our personal lives, our families, our churches, our communities and in our nations around the world. May the God of this universe become known as Everlasting King of this universe!

PRAYER:   Lord You are good and Your mercies endureth forever! In our Scripture today, we are reminded that although You created us to worship You, there are few who meet to worship You. You created us in Your likeness hoping that we would live in similar fashion to Your example while here on earth, yet there are many who mock and scorn You and Your children, much like what occurred in times past. Lord, all of these denials are evident in spite of the many warning signs that were left as reminders for us of Your great power. Heavenly Father, please soften the hearts of Your children this weekend, so that Your churches may be filled to capacity with worshipers longing to draw close to their Creator, our Everlasting God. AMEN!

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

 

I Want To Be Just Like You!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Romans 7:24-25 (Voice)

TEXT:  24 I am absolutely miserable! Is there anyone who can free me from this body where sin and death reign so supremely? 25 I am thankful to God for the freedom that comes through our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One! So on the one hand, I devotedly serve God’s law with my mind; but on the other hand, with my flesh, I serve the principle of sin.

OBSERVATION:   Paul arrived at a time that he had a conversation with God about how he really felt his life was going. He knew that he wanted to follow Christ wholeheartedly, like many of us, but he was frustrated with himself because he kept finding himself struggling from doing what he was determined to do. In fact, he was often swayed into sin, which is totally opposite from his goal. Since this is so much like us today, I thought we could take time to sort this out and look at ways that might help us stay on track for God.

APPLICATION:   Have you heard it said that the Holy Spirit could leave some churches and it may take a while for members to even notice that He did? Well that may sound a bit funny to some, but when we remember that the church is made up with folk like you and I, then I believe that saying becomes a lot more personal. I believe that the bottom line is for us to stop and think about the type of relationship we have with the Lord Jesus Christ. Obviously Paul had an intimate relationship with God, yet he got to a point where he felt like he had lost touch with Jesus, and that sin was having it’s better way with him. So let’s also consider how we might stay closer to God, and how we might be more obedient to the Holy Spirit that dwells withing us. My mind went onto times that I’m on a diet. I am more convinced then than ever that I should stay clear of sweets, yet if offered ice cream or cheesecake-flan I would probably take a small bit of it. No longer than I start eating it, I start chastening myself for cheating. Similarly, because I have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, and through His help, I have certain disciplines around Bible Study and being faithful to opportunities at church to learn more about Him, and to draw closer to Him through other believers. When I miss any of these opportunities, or especially if I miss my personal Bible Study, I feel like I have cheated on God, or at least shorted myself of quality time together. Friends, we will speak and act from what our heart is filled with. I pray that each one reading this blog might say like myself, that our desire is to be so filled with the goodness, wisdom and love of Jesus, that we might often be mistaken for Him. There’s a song entitled ‘I want to be just like you’, and I often pray that God would give me the strength and fortitude to sing that song as I talk with Him and walk with Him each day!

PRAYER:   Heavenly Father, thank You for showing us the way to walk and talk ‘just like You’. Lord You are awesome in every way, and You have welcomed our desire to draw close to You and be like You. Please help us to set priorities for getting into Your Word so that we could learn more about You and also hear responses to our prayers. Please give us boldness in our walk and steadiness in our desire to live for You every day of our lives, so that we may set an example for others to follow. Thank You Heavenly Father! Thank You 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 could 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 to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

 

Holding On Tightly

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-05-17
SCRIPTURE

From:

Mark 10:20-23 (MSG)

Text:

20 He said, “Teacher, I have—from my youth—kept them all!”

21 Jesus looked him hard in the eye—and loved him! He said, “There’s one thing left: Go sell whatever you own and give it to the poor. All your wealth will then be heavenly wealth. And come follow me.”

22 The man’s face clouded over. This was the last thing he expected to hear, and he walked off with a heavy heart. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and not about to let go.

23 Looking at his disciples, Jesus said, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for people who ‘have it all’ to enter God’s kingdom?”

OBSERVATION:
This rich young man felt like there was something missing in his life, in spite of all his riches. Having heard the stories about Jesus, and especially about this kingdom of which Jesus spoke, he decided to ask Jesus what it would take for him to make the cut. Jesus gave him a list of commandments, and the man felt like he had been obeying them from a very early age. Then Jesus got to the very core of this man’s issue – his riches. Because he was holding tight to his riches, he stopped asking Jesus further questions and instead left very saddened.
APPLICATION:
I believe that if each of us went to Jesus today on our own, there would be something that we are holding on to tightly that He could draw to our attention. For some, it might be riches, but for others it might be your job/business, or perhaps your family or friends or parties or sports or internet, etc, etc. I believe another way to analyze your own situation is to imagine Jesus asking you to go to a mission field that might be hundreds of miles away – what would be your biggest excuse to Him as to why you can’t leave in a few days? Now that you have figured that one out, what if God told you to get up and spend a few days with a poor lonely person a few blocks away as He is calling them to salvation and wants your influence in their life for a while? What might be the factor or excuse that would cause you to decline God’s request? I know, these things that I’ve mentioned are very challenging for some to even think about, so I’ll tell you what, why not just invite your neighbors to church with you this weekend? Oh you can’t because you have a fishing trip planned? Or is it a beach day, or family in town, or your favorite team is playing on Sunday and you can’t miss one minute of the game? Friends, I believe you are probably getting the idea by now, for if God is truly a priority in our lives, because we have said ‘Yes’ to His lordship, then what would truly prevent us from responding to the Master’s call? I would suggest that although many of us are not ‘rich’ financially, we are ‘rich’ in the things of this world. Try attending a retreat out in the wild, away from internet, television and worldly hindrances and see how close you can draw to God. While there, consider the things of this world that claim your attention and hinders your time and/or obedience to God. Those things are your ‘riches’ that Jesus might be asking you to diminish in your life so that He might claim your full attention. Singing that song ‘Draw me close to You’ will not do the job friend, only your willingness to let go of those things that you hold on to more tightly than God.
PRAYER:
Lord, I am convicted through this Scripture today that there are things of this world that Satan has used to distract us from holding You first in our lives, or having You as our priority in life. If we fought as hard to make You a priority, as we do for work, or church meetings, or family, or riches, then we might be like a large ship controlled by a very small rudder, for we would be way more sensitive to Your voice and Your commands. We may not be rich, as the young ruler was, but we do have distractions galore, so please Lord, draw our attention to the things that hinder our close walk with You and draw us close to You. We need You every hour dear Lord, stay close to us and encourage us to always stay close to You. 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 could 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 to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

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