DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-03-26
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Romans 5:2-4
TRANSLATION: The Voice (Voice)
BIBLE TEXT: 2 Jesus leads us into a place of radical grace where we are able to celebrate the hope of experiencing God’s glory. 3 And that’s not all. We also celebrate in seasons of suffering because we know that when we suffer we develop endurance, 4 which shapes our characters. When our characters are refined, we learn what it means to hope and anticipate God’s goodness.
OBSERVATION: It seems like we have gotten so much into ourselves that when troubles come, we quickly cry out, for we feel like the world has turned against us, or our luck has gone down the drain. However, for the child of God that depends on the Word of God for guidance through this life, we are given the answer to life’s challenges right here in this 5th chapter of Romans. At one time or the other, we all let worry and troubles pull us down, so let us spend some time in being reminded what God told us through His servant, Paul, about the neat experience of pleading with God to pour out His grace on us.
APPLICATION: There are times in our lives where we feel like there is no where else to look, but up. We feel like we have maximized everything in our collection of knowledge and effort, and we have no other tricks up our sleeve. Some will allow this to drive them nuts, feeling worthless and inadequate, while some will look to other resources for answers. Sooner or later we all reach the conclusion that the problem is greater than us, and we need help from somewhere, or someone much greater than us. Saul was a terror in his day, but God got a hold of him and used his energy and drive for His glory. After this awesome life change, including the change of his name to Paul, he faced many tests that may have caused most men to throw in the towel and run the other way. But look at the boldness of Paul in verse 2 above where he is asking God to lead him into a place where he could see His grace at work! Isn’t that quite the opposite of what we tend to ask God for? We want smooth sailing, unobstructed roads, kind employees, a generous boss, and only those who know Jesus to cross our path, don’t we? In fact, we are so persistent in asking for this, and expecting this, that we tend to become irritated with God for not answering our prayers when troubles come our way or we have a day that doesn’t go the way we feel an upright child of God deserves! So what do we learn from this? Friends, I believe that God is standing ready to answer our prayers that we ask in line with His will, and for which we are prepared to give Him glory. For example, we may be stricken with reduced eyesight, and instead of a complete healing of that, God may place us in the presence of a doctor or nurse who have been abusing or ignoring a blind relative who just stumbles over everything around their home. Your encounter with them may help show them that no matter our circumstances here on earth, we serve a God who can do all things, and that He has prepared a home for us where there will be no more sickness, dying or any other struggling. You may show them that real love looks beyond blindness, or abuse or hatred and that we could display a loving and forgiving heart to someone anyway. For our Lord went to Calvary and died on a cross for us, even while we were still sinners and despised and hated him. That same love is now available to us and can be displayed through us as His Holy Spirit dwells in and works through us, as it did in the apostle Paul. With Christ as our Lord and Savior, friends, we can stand tall in good times and in challenging times, for we know who holds our hand, and we know that whether we enjoy life here on earth, or graduate to a better life in Heaven, life is worth it all in the presence of our Lord! Do you know Him dear friend? Do you have this assurance today? Let me assure you that in the midst of the storm, Jesus is holding out His hand to you and encouraging you to ‘Come to me all those who are weak and heavy burdened’. Please read through my Footnote, and especially the Scripture available through the link ‘To Know Jesus’. Allow Jesus to impact your decision to accept Him today, won’t you?
PRAYER: Precious Lord, take my hand, lead me home. Thank You for encouraging us through Your Word, and thank Your for the miraculous change in the life of Saul/Paul. Many who will read this devotional today needs that kind of change in their lives today, for we are going through troubled waters and challenging times where there are no known fixes that mankind is aware of. Only You could change a person like Saul, and only You could touch the lives of mankind who has become so intertwined in this dark sinful world. You told us that You want us to be ready for Your return, and I pray diligently for all those in my circle of friends and family that they will not let today pass by without seeking Your face in earnest and sincerity. For those of us who have invited You into our heart already, we humbly say ‘Come Lord Jesus, Come – even today’. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. 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!