Enough Is Enough

In my early years of life, I remember when my mom got tired of all the whining, she would say to us kids ‘Enough is enough, and too much is good for nothing at all’! That phrase may not make it into the smartest English professors’ new book, but I though of it this morning as I meditated on our focal verses from Jeremiah! I see a lot of parallels in what God shared with Jeremiah, compared with what all is going on around us today and I wonder how much more God will take before taking similar action to what He did with the Israelites. Meditate with me as we look deeper into this.

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2020-08-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Jeremiah 11:14-15
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: 14 Therefore, Jeremiah, pray no longer for this people, neither weep nor plead for them; for I will not listen to them when they are finally desperate enough to beg me for help. 15 What right do my beloved people have to come anymore to my Temple? For you have been unfaithful and worshiped other gods. Can promises and sacrifices now avert your doom and give you life and joy again?

OBSERVATION: In my early years of life, I remember when my mom got tired of all the whining, she would say to us kids ‘Enough is enough, and too much is good for nothing at all’! That phrase may not make it into the smartest English professors’ new book, but I though of it this morning as I meditated on our focal verses from Jeremiah! I see a lot of parallels in what God shared with Jeremiah, compared with what all is going on around us today and I wonder how much more God will take before taking similar action to what He did with the Israelites. Meditate with me as we look deeper into this.

APPLICATION: It is unfortunate, but there is an old saying that reminds us that many people don’t look up to God until they are flat on their backs in a serious form of illness and have no other choice but to look up. You may have the same sort of friends that I have, and also like the ones that surrounded Jeremiah in his time. You know, the ones that want absolutely nothing to do with God, or His people, until there is a need in their lives. But let’s put aside our personal feelings about these friends, who still ask us to pray for them in their time of trouble. Let’s think about how God must have felt about the Israelites and how He must feel in our situations today. You see, the God who created us, saw how badly mankind was wandering away from His commands and His commandments, so He miraculously brought His Son into the world to provide a means for us to seek forgiveness of our sin; to cleanse us of our unrighteousness; and to help us see the portals of Heaven. Don’t you see that the thing that God wants most, is that His children would set aside the desires of this world and seek a close relationship with our Master more than anything else in this world? Unfortunately, we are very much like the people of Jeremiah’s day, for we ignore the wonderful grace of Jesus, and the love of our Savior who sacrificed His life for us. However, when troubles come, or unbearable pain, loss, or desperation of life is imposed, the vilest offender – the one who absolutely refused to recognize God in all aspects of life, they suddenly crave to communicate with Him and seek His help. This is why we hear so much about death-bed confessions. While God hears the prayers of forgiveness, and requests for salvation from a sinner, I believe that very much like in the case of the Israelites, He is opposed to the wheeling and dealing we may try to do when we look Him up on an as-needed basis. Because we then tend to continue our life of sin and separation. It is obvious that God was totally opposed to this with the Israelites, and I have no reason to doubt that He is just as upset with sinners today who feel like they could manipulate God. You see, God sent His Son to be our everlasting Savior throughout all of eternity. I believe God expects nothing less from us when we say with our lips that we confess our sins to Him, yet we go on living like the world. He wants us to live up to our commitment throughout eternity. Please let it really sink in: (1) He told Jeremiah not to pray for the wicked people of his time – and this is something that no person alive would want to hear, no matter what they believe, or don’t, for we all want others to pray with us about our troubles and our pain; and (2) In verse 23 of this same chapter God declared that those same wicked people would be destroyed. We have always been taught and encouraged that as long as there is life, there is hope. So we absolutely can’t imagine that while we feel like we could ask God’s people to pray for us, God might be declaring our demise – because of our stubbornness, unbelief, selfishness and determination to live life under our own terms. Friends, we serve a very strong and loving God who is full of grace and mercy, but He is also a JUST God and will do what He says. I believe His desire is that you would accept Him and know Him intimately for as long as He allows you time here on earth. Rejecting Him will lead to destruction, for He will eventually declare that ‘Enough is Enough’. May you make a well informed, choice today, that is pleasing to our God and that will last throughout eternity, for this is my sincere prayer for you.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, it is challenging for us to comprehend the love that You showed on Calvary for us, because here on earth we tend to be so selfish and we desire only things that will benefit us or our loved ones. But Lord, I pray today that You would use Your Word to speak truth into the lives of my friends and I that will impact us for eternity. Please help us to draw so close to You that Your love will flow through us, especially to those who have yet to recognize You as King. May this be a day that many will come to know You personally, and without any side distractions or urgencies that may hinder them from looking for a ‘higher being’ – a God who loves them sincerely. You are God, and besides You there is no other. Oh that we may have a personal, real and intimate relationship with You here on earth so that You may accomplish Your work even through us. Lord, we want to see You! Please bless us and use us for Your glory, while we wait for Your call to join You in Heaven! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, 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 making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

We Have Enough!

In your minds, I would like for you to imagine that you are looking at your neighbor in church when the pastor announces that he wants the congregation to STOP GIVING, because the building fund is fully funded and there is no need for additional funds! Can you imagine the shock? Yet in our time together today we will see where Moses did exactly that – he told the people that there was no need of additional gifts, for there was enough given already! Let’s dig in to learn more about this strange idea!!

Tuesday, 2019-10-22

Bible Reference: Exodus 36:4-7
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text:  4 Finally the craftsmen who were working on the sanctuary left their work. 5 They went to Moses and reported, “The people have given more than enough materials to complete the job the Lord has commanded us to do!” 6 So Moses gave the command, and this message was sent throughout the camp: “Men and women, don’t prepare any more gifts for the sanctuary. We have enough!” So the people stopped bringing their sacred offerings. 7 Their contributions were more than enough to complete the whole project.

OBSERVATION: In your minds, I would like for you to imagine that you are looking at your neighbor in church when the pastor announces that he wants the congregation to STOP GIVING, because the building fund is fully funded and there is no need for additional funds! Can you imagine the shock? Yet in our time together today we will see where Moses did exactly that – he told the people that there was no need of additional gifts, for there was enough given already! Let’s dig in to learn more about this strange idea!!

APPLICATION:  I wonder why things may have changed? Whether we talk to an individual or a well established church, there always seems to be a cry for help in their financial needs. First of all in our Scripture today, it is clear that not all of the people freely gave to the cause. In 2:21 we are told that those whose hearts were stirred by the message from God through Moses, responded to the plea for help in providing material for the building project. This sounds pretty much like our churches today, don’t you think? As a result of surveys, we are told that less than 20% of the people do more than 80% of the giving! So why have the others ignored the plea? Friends, I believe that the Word of God is clear on this. Just as the Word tells us that if we humble ourselves and pray, then God would save our nation, I believe that many of us need to humble ourselves to recognize that we have nothing personally to brag about. It is because of God’s grace that we have the health to work, the job to go to, and the income to survive. If we truly acknowledge that fact, why would we withhold giving to God in proportion to what He has blessed us with? The Word gives us guidance – at least 10%. Because there are other biblical references to ‘first fruits’, I believe that the guidance actually refers to 10% of your gross income. Now because our relationship is one built around love, I don’t believe that we would dare use this as a legalistic demand. People ‘in love’ will generally give freely, and way more than might be expected of them. In a love relationship, there is no such thing as excuses why we can’t give 110% of ourselves to our mate. Should there be an excuse, or a reason, when it comes to giving to our Lord and His earthly work? Don’t you know that if each person in our congregations gave like this, that our pastors would frequently be faced with an overflow of income, where pastors and church leaders could decide to expand the ministry after meeting all the needs that they are aware of? We are told that more than 70% of our county have no church affiliation, or relationship with Jesus Christ, so is there a need to to expand our ministries? God may hold us accountable for not giving as we should to reach the lost. Furthermore, I believe that the stress level on our pastors will be drastically reduced, when they don’t have to worry about funding the projects that God has shown them might be necessary to grow the ministry. When we receive our paycheck, there is no negotiating on amounts taken out for government taxes, why should there be constant decision making on how much to give towards God’s work? Determine in your own heart how much you will give and stick to the plan Brother and Sister. We are promised that we will receive more than we could ever imagine or expect. Furthermore, we will receive in proportion to what we have given. May I encourage you to always expect more from God, knowing that you have given in abundance towards His work? Furthermore, rejoice, knowing your loving and all powerful God will abundantly bless you and meet your needs!

PRAYER: Father, it is exciting to see how You work. We give to bless others, yet You wind up also blessing us in return! There just isn’t a way that we can out-give You! Thank You for being so generous, loving and kind to us! I would say that we are so undeserving, but then I am reminded that even while we were undeserving, You sent Your only Son as a sacrifice for us, so that we might have a chance at eternal life in heaven with You. Thank You Father! Thank You Jesus, Son of God! Lord may we learn to give in similar fashion – regardless of whether we feel the receiver or the project is worthy of our love, may we react in obedience to Your will for us. Please bless us as we give, so that our own needs may be met each and every day. May souls be touched for You because of our obedience in giving. I ask these things humbly, although undeserving, but in the powerful name of our all-giving Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, AMEN!

More Than Enough

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

Thursday, 2019-04-04

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

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

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

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

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

Fully Funded Projects

THE HOLY BIBLE (New Living Translation – Exodus 36:4-7): 4 Finally the craftsmen who were working on the sanctuary left their work. 5 They went to Moses and reported, “The people have given more than enough materials to complete the job the Lord has commanded us to do!” 6 So Moses gave the command, and this message was sent throughout the camp: “Men and women, don’t prepare any more gifts for the sanctuary. We have enough!” So the people stopped bringing their sacred offerings. 7 Their contributions were more than enough to complete the whole project.

THOUGHTS: When was the last time your pastor stood in your church pulpit and followed Moses’ words in telling the people that a project was fully funded and it would not be necessary to continue giving to that project? In this sense, project may sound fairly insignificant in size, but what if the project was building your next sanctuary? Do you remember the last time you may have heard a pastor tell you to lay off giving to that project because the church has more than enough to complete it? So let’s consider why things may have changed. First of all, the scripture is clear that not all of the people freely gave to the cause. In 2:21 we are told that those whose hearts were stirred by the message from God through Moses, responded to the plea for help in providing material for the building project. This sounds pretty much like our churches today, don’t you think? As a result of surveys, we are told that less than 20% of the people do more than 80% of the giving! So why have the others ignored the plea? Friends, I believe that the Word of God is clear on this. Just as the Word tells us that if we humble ourselves and pray, then God would save our nation, I believe that many of us need to humble ourselves to recognize that we have nothing personally to brag about. It is because of God’s grace that we have the health to work, the job to go to, and the income to survive. If we truly acknowledge that fact, why would we withhold giving to Him in proportion to what He has blessed us with? The Word gives us guidance – at least 10%. Because there are other biblical references to ‘first fruits’, I believe that the guidance actually refers to 10% of your gross income. Now because our relationship is one built around love, I don’t believe that we would dare use this as a legalistic demand. People ‘in love’ will generally give freely, and way more than might be expected of them. In a love relationship, there is no such thing as excuses why we can’t give 110% of ourselves to our mate. Should there be when it comes to giving to our Lord and His earthly work? Don’t you know that if each person in our congregations gave like this, that our pastors would frequently be faced with an overflow of income, where pastors and church leaders could decide to expand the ministry after meeting all the needs that they are aware of? I believe that the stress level on our pastors will be drastically reduced, when they don’t have to worry about funding the projects that God has shown them might be necessary to grow the ministry. When we receive our paycheck, there is no negotiating on amounts taken out for government taxes, why should there be constant decision making on how much to give towards God’s work? Determine in your own heart how much you will give and stick to the plan Brother and Sister. We are promised that we will receive more than we could ever imagine or expect. Furthermore, we will receive in proportion to what we have given. May I encourage you to always expect more from God, knowing that you have given in abundance towards His work? Furthermore, rejoice, knowing your loving and all powerful God will abundantly bless you and meet your needs!

PRAYER: Father, it is exciting to see how You work. We give to bless others, yet You wind up also blessing us in return! There just isn’t a way that we can out-give You! Thank You for being so generous, loving and kind to us! I would say that we are so undeserving, but then I am reminded that even while we were undeserving, You sent Your only Son as a sacrifice for us, so that we might have a chance at eternal life in heaven with You. Thank You Father! Thank You Jesus, Son of God! Lord may we learn to give in similar fashion – regardless of whether we feel the receiver or the project is worthy of our love, may we react in obedience to Your will for us. Please bless us as we give, so that our own needs may be met each and every day. May souls be touched for You because of our obedience in giving. I ask these things humbly, yet undeserving, but in the powerful name of our all-giving Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely 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, Sebring, FL! 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!

God’s Grace is All You Need!

The Holy Bible

7 So that I would not become too proud of the wonderful things that were shown to me, a painful physical problem was given to me. This problem was a messenger from Satan, sent to beat me and keep me from being too proud. 8 I begged the Lord three times to take this problem away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you.” So I am very happy to brag about my weaknesses. Then Christ’s power can live in me.

(Bible Translation and Location: New Century Version – 2 Corinthians 12:7-9)

Thoughts:

How often do we stand before our mighty and powerful God and question Him about all that is allowing to happen in our lives, and in the lives of His holy children? But wait a minute, isn’t that questioning the ways of God, the reasoning behind His decisions, His perfect will and design for us? I found it very humbling to be reminded of what Paul said in this scripture today, because I believe that God patiently waits for us to get over ourselves and totally surrender to Him so that He may actually have a chance to prove Himself to us. Friends, when we accept Jesus as Lord and King of our lives, it’s not for the purpose of a security blanket, although we are very secure in the blanket of His arms around us and the warmth of His love for us. Instead, we actually enter into a Father and son/daughter relationship with Him. Let’s remember that when we are totally surrendered to God and open to His powerful hand upon us, He can then have the freedom to bless us in ways that we would never have imagined or asked for. Friends, I was reminded that instead of beating my head against the wall when everything around me is collapsing and spinning out of my control, I need to remember that God’s grace is enough for me and through that weakness/trial/temptation, His mighty hand is still in charge and needing to take control of my situation. Oh that we can learn to surrender ourselves to Him much sooner than later! When we consider the pride we (dads) have when we see our children succeed and do well, to a great part because of our love and persistence in their lives, I cannot begin to imagine how proud God must be of His children who takes full advantage of His grace, His love and His instructions to live more noble and praiseworthy lives – the way that He designed us to be, and rejoice in seeing every day. So if our Father has full control, and loves us enough to have sent His only Son for our redemption, tell me again what might cause us to be down in the mouth and depressed in our souls? We are blessed beyond all words friends, let’s act that way and praise God with that in mind!

Prayer:

Dear Lord, please continue to impress upon us the need to live like Your blessed and admired children! We are covered by the sacrifice You made for us and the invitation we accepted to allow Your grace into our lives. We are loved enough that warranted You sacrificing Jesus so that we might live eternally with You. Oh that we may ‘get it’. The fact that we are blessed and loved children of the Almighty God! Lord, may Your power become perfect in us today, so that we may go on to be powerful ambassadors for You, is my prayer that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Savior, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely 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, Sebring, FL!