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

Posts tagged ‘leadership’

In All Honesty and Fairness

Post Date:

Monday, 2017-07-17
SCRIPTURE

From:

Deuteronomy 16:18-20 (NCV)

Text:

 18 Appoint judges and officers for your tribes in every town the Lord your God is giving you; they must judge the people fairly. 19 Do not judge unfairly or take sides. Do not let people pay you to make wrong decisions, because that kind of payment makes wise people seem blind, and it changes the words of good people. 20 Always do what is right…..
OBSERVATION:
Moses, in guiding God’s people as they prepared to enter the Promised Land, realized that this would be a whole new experience for them, so he tried to share every detail with them. In these verses that we will look at today he told them that they will need judges and leaders, to take the place of all that he and Aaron had done for them over the past 40 years. Knowing that we can also benefit from this reminder, I want God to lead us in this devotional on how we might be better leaders…
APPLICATION:
It is so easy for us look at a judge’s decision, and if it’s contrary to our belief, or our desire for the prosecuted (defendant), we may quickly respond “that’s unfair” without giving it a second thought. Our wish didn’t come true. However good judges are put in place to learn everything possible about the law of the land, so that when a case is brought before them, they could listen to all the facts, compare what they hear to everything they know about the law, and then determine as an independent person whether the defendant is guilty of wrongdoing. Not being a ‘judge’ you may question if this really applies to you and I. That’s what I want us to look at today, because I believe that we make decisions every day that shows God whether we are thinking and acting fairly. Let’s look at our work situation where we are looking at 3 candidates who have applied for a position we have available. Although much of our decision is based on a ‘gut feeling’, I believe it will surprise us to stop and ponder what prejudices or selfish motives come into play with our decision. Secondly, imagine two individuals being reported to you as doing something contrary to company policy. One brings you coffee every morning and has your back most of the time, vs the other one causes relational problems in your department. Can you honestly deal fairly and consistent with both employees? Things become especially tricky in churches when dealing with those that financially support the church vs a regular attendee who may or may not support the church financially. Friends, as you can see from the examples given, we all make judgment calls in some aspect of our lives. You can also see that bribes come in more ways than one, and they all serve to sway our decision in one way or another. This Scripture is teaching us to be careful of this, for it makes a wise man blind and causes him to make decisions that he may ordinarily have done if being obedient to his full understanding of God’s perfect laws. Obeying God’s laws is sometimes tougher than we might think, if we try to follow them in our own strength and power. I believe that it is a daily challenge that we must keep ever before God, that we seek His guidance, His strength and His perfect design for us to be aligned with what He desires of us. Living a life like Jesus is so different to anything we experience here on earth, that we must stay closely in tuned with our awesome Designer. Are you prepared to do this friend?
PRAYER:
Lord, this life is challenging at best, and we can only accomplish Your will with the help of Your Holy Spirit. Leadership is challenging when we have to put personal feelings aside and judge according to Your perfect design. But Lord, we want to be more like You every day and in every way. So teach us Your ways, and help us to understand Your perfect will more and more clearly. We love You Lord, and appreciate every opportunity You give to us to show that same awesome love to others we come into contact with, all for Your honor and glory, 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!

Refocus May Be Necessary

THE HOLY BIBLE (New Living Translation – 2 Timothy 4:16-18): 16 The first time I was brought before the judge, no one came with me. Everyone abandoned me. May it not be counted against them. 17 But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength so that I might preach the Good News in its entirety for all the Gentiles to hear. And he rescued me from certain death. 18 Yes, and the Lord will deliver me from every evil attack and will bring me safely into his heavenly Kingdom. All glory to God forever and ever! Amen.

THOUGHTS: Ever stood your ground on something, then turned around and felt like you were the only one standing? That’s similar to what Paul must have felt when he stood before the judge mentioned in this passage. However, for those who trust in God and make a stand in obedience to His calling, I am comforted in knowing that the same God that stood with Paul, will also stand with us! This is something that we can stand confident in the Lord about! However, may I also draw our attention to the remainder of verse 17, for Paul tells us that the matter of God standing by him was not for the purpose of Paul being lifted up in the eyes of his oppressors, but instead to give him protection, deliverance and strength to return to the ministry for which God had called him in the first place. Wouldn’t it seem natural that following such a rescue, we would assume that God might be telling us to escape the area to prevent a recurrence of getting caught by the Romans again? But look at what Paul shares with us: God rescued him and gave him strength so that he might go on to preach the Good News in its entirety for all Gentiles to hear. In other words, that he might go on to finish the job for which he was called! Distractions in ministry often tend to beset the ministry, however when we see God at work even in the distractions, we must stay on track and allow Him to carry on without regard to the circumstances being slightly different to what we originally thought. I believe that there are also times where God might cause distractions to cause us to return to Him, or refocus on Him, or draw even more strength from Him, so that we might be reminded of the true Commander in charge of our mission. Therefore, when commissioned by God, we must never lose hope, but instead surrender our all to the Commander and be prepared to accept instructions from Him, in His time, as we are on mission for His purposes! Like Paul, we will quickly celebrate our victories as we stand in amazement to the mighty works of God!

PRAYER: Father I believe that there may be times that we change ministry direction or focus, when instead You are merely trying to strengthen us and help us refocus on You as our leader. Please help us to examine ourselves and regain our focus on the Leader of our mission and the purpose for which You have called us. Please show us Your power so that we will not succumb to the distractions that Satan will send our way, especially while dedicated to Your work and Your will for our lives. Please continue to show us Your will and open our eyes to Your power, that’s absolutely necessary to help us fulfill Your will, so that everyone that we might come into contact with might see Your mighty works evident in our lives, and they may be convinced of their need for a Savior. I ask all this in the precious name of Jesus, 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! 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!

Worthy of Worship

The Holy Bible  (The Contemporary English Version – Isaiah 22:15): 15 My servant will make nations worthy to worship me; kings will be silent as they bow in wonder. They will see and think about things they have never seen or thought about before.

Thoughts: I believe that as a society we are facing a very challenging situation, with our churches almost going into extinction. Shocked? Well friend, I believe that you may need to move into reality and see how many churches are shutting down each week because of poor attendance or lack of necessary operating funds. So why do you suppose this may be the case? First let’s examine the makeup of the local church – it’s made up of folk just like you and I that attend, and give for the ongoing work of the Lord. So why do we attend? Perhaps some go out of tradition – meaning that it is the place to be on Saturday or Sunday morning. Others may go because they feel accountable to a family member. Still others attend out of pure devotion to God, and they look forward to not only worshiping Him for His blessings during the week, but they also want to learn more about what God has to say to us through His messenger. So why then are churches declining, and even shutting their doors? I believe that Isaiah made a very important point that we all must pay attention to. For I believe that in and of our own sinful selves, we have no desire to attend church, to be told about our sin, and stand corrected about our life styles and decisions. However, as in the day of the church that Isaiah envisioned, I am convinced that it is God who will call people to Himself and convince them of their need to worship Him. I believe that way too often our churches today come up with so many programs and tactics to attract people into their churches, that attendees remain uncommitted when their ‘program’ is weakened or discontinued. Friends, this is not a problem when we allow Jesus to remain in charge of His church. So I believe that as church leaders constantly seek Him, allow Him control, and plead for His interaction with His people, then He will have freedom to work on the worthiness of His people and the churches in which they worship. Isaiah prophesied that Jesus would ‘make’ the people (nations) worthy. To do this will require getting to their hardened hearts and turning around some evil thoughts that have been permitted in. I believe that God still has the power to impact our towns, our country and our world for Himself today, friends! For those of you who know Him as Lord, may I encourage you to surrender fully to Him today, then pray for family, co-workers and friends who have not seen the need to attend church where they might join in corporate worship? If you are one of those who have not seen the need to attend worship services, may I suggest that God is already dealing in your heart friend! I say this based on the knowledge that it is only God that would have encouraged you to read all the way to this point in this devotional! So listen to the voice of God and follow through in what you feel He is prompting you to do. He has prepared a very bright future for all of us who know Him personally. I would love to see you be among the number who will see Him face to face in heaven! I am excited about the opportunity, and I pray that you will be also!

Prayer: Lord Jesus, You are so good to us! Thank You for loving us enough to provide the means for us to one day join You in Heaven! I plead with You today heavenly Father, that the hearts of Your children will be humbled to fully understand the love laid upon Calvary’s cross so that we might be afforded the gift of eternal life with You in glory! I pray that each person meditating on this devotional today will not only place themselves on the altar of sacrifice and worship before You, but that we might begin in deep earnest to pray for our family, coworkers and friends, so that Your church here on earth might be reinvigorated and recommitted to true and sincere worship of You. Perhaps at that stage, unsaved loved ones will be open to uniting with sincere and loyal followers freed form hypocrisy and self-righteousness. Lord You are the only one worthy of our worship! May we commit ourselves to clean and holy lives so that our worship might be a sweet aroma in your ears. I ask all this in the precious name of Jesus, with thanksgiving, 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! 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!

Ready For A New Life?

The Holy Bible

Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. God put the world square with himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them.

(Bible Translation and Location: The Message – 2 Corinthians 5:17-20)

Thoughts:
I’m sure at the end of our day we look back and reflect on the things we said that we regret; the things that we should have said, but didn’t; the attitude that should have been better when talking to an associate; the family relations that should have been superior to what actually transpired, and on and on. Life is filled with these types of disappointments, especially when we try to handle it alone and bear the full burden. God’s Word clearly states that He came to this earth, was crucified and rose again, so that we might have life (now and forever), and if we surrender our life to Him and allow Him to guide us each day, we will experience life more abundant, secure, protected and loved. Therefore, we should gladly surrender our burdens and disappointments to Him for direction and help in resolving. Furthermore, the only way for our ‘old life’ to be considered gone, is if we surrender it to God. Friends, our life in Jesus takes on a whole new outlook. For we then live by faith and under God’s direction, in ways that He has taught us in His Word and through various means throughout our day where He sends roadblocks or open doors for us. For those meditating on this today but do not identify with what I have shared, may I suggest that you have a conversation with my Lord? You see, it is only through faith in Jesus that you will experience the kind of life of which I speak. If you have never taken this step, I would humbly suggest that you follow the steps in my footnote. To my Christian friends reading this but who are still experiencing the days of tumult and battles that you’ve always faced, I would humbly suggest that you quickly put time aside to speak with our Lord and Savior, for you may not have surrendered as much of your life to Him as you once thought. In a fully surrendered life, you are able, with God’s power, strength and direction, to help others. You will really confuse them if you are still experiencing the same issues that they are facing. Fully surrender your life to God and experience the life in Him that He promised, so that you may bless others for Him.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, please forgive me for often hanging on to parts of my life that I should have already surrendered over to You. This lack of trust and faith hinders my walk and witness for You. Please work in my heart so that I may be one with You. I want to be all that I can be because of Your mighty hand guiding me and using me for Your complete glory. May I be used of You to impact the lives of my family and friends who need You, and to be Your hand outstretched to the stranger in need of a Savior. Please be especially close to my Christian friends who need this same experience today so that Your glory may shine brightly throughout our realm of influence. Please impact the life of an unbeliever with this message today. May they find reasons to seek You and know You while there is still time for them to do so. I ask this in Your precious and holy name dear Jesus, 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 days 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!

Trust In The Lord

The Holy Bible

Trust in the Lord with all your heart;do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,and he will show you which path to take
.

(Bible Translation and Location: New Living Translation – Proverbs 3:5-6)

Thoughts:

I know this sounds like a fairly simple topic today, but if we’re honest with ourselves we will acknowledge how often we do things on our own, then when we mess up, we come back and ask God to clear it up for us. Often as I study the Word I will see what the commentators have to say about certain verses. Although these two verses seemed very clear to me, I want to still share with you what Matthew Henry had to say in his commentary on these: “In all our ways that prove pleasant, in which we gain our point, we must acknowledge God with thankfulness. In all our ways that prove uncomfortable, and that are hedged up with thorns, we must acknowledge him with submission. It is promised, He shall direct thy paths; so that thy way shall be safe and good, and happy at last”. This brought new life to these verses for me, because I have always just looked at these as simply placing my trust in the only one that knows everything, period. However, life can really have both twists to it like explained by Matthew Henry, pleasant or uncomfortable! The bottom line is friends, please consider being obedient to the Word and our Father. Don’t wait until you’ve made a stupid mistake before inviting God into the picture to clear it all up for you. Suppose that the decision you made is not His choice for you? Will He still clear it up for you? I don’t think so! When you are blessed to awaken each morning, you may have an idea of what your schedule is, but who knows what you will truly face? When you make a decision that day, who knows what long-reaching effects that decision will have on you and your family? The answer to both of these last two questions is “God”. He’s the only One that knows what lies ahead for us. So instead of us screwing this up, why don’t we commit today to always seek His perfect will for our lives at the beginning of each day? Let’s submit to Jesus for each decision we might make that day, that He might direct us and give us wisdom, so that He might ultimately receive glory from our actions and our decisions. We must learn to trust in God for the little decisions for which we feel like we have a handle on, as well as those decisions that really scare us. Will you, together with myself, dare commit to this today? We really need to if we are children of the King! God being our helper, please direct our path to obedience and submission each day, please dear Father!

Prayer:

Lord, we often sin by excluding You from the daily decisions that we make each day, and we ask Your forgiveness. Lord Jesus, my life belongs to You, so decisions I make every day must be guided and directed by You. Please work on me to humbly get before You each day in submission, and humility as I ask You to direct my path, protect me while on the path, and guide me to decisions that are pleasing in Your sight and that would prove beneficial for my relationship with You. Please work in the lives of my friends that will meditate on this devotional and recognize similar actions, and needs by them. May they also open up their hearts and lives to You, is my humble prayer, that I ask in the name of Jesus, my Lord, 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 days 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!

Pitfalls To Watch For in Christian Leadership

In leadership, we have to realize that we are not an island, or a dictatorship. Without the cooperation of the people, who will we lead? Without respecting and caring for the people that we lead, we will have little concern for their well being. When we lose their love, respect and desire to follow us, we will have a lonely time at the top leading ourselves. In verse 17 Rehoboam was left to rule over one territory only. He lost his effectiveness as a leader of all the people. We have to be so careful of that. With God’s help and direction, we can gain the respect of the people we lead, and still respect them and be a part of them. Especially in leadership we must allow God to work in and through us. It is one thing to not personally obey God’s commands, or lead our family aright, but to lead a whole Bible School class, or church, or city or nation astray is altogether different, and results in an impact on God’s ministry through us. We should always look for ways to enhance the kingdom, not tear it down.
Book cover

When the people saw that the king would not listen to them, they shouted, “Down with David and his family! What have they ever done for us? People of Israel, let’s go home! Let Rehoboam look out for himself!” So the people of Israel rebelled, leaving Rehoboam as king only of the people who lived in the territory of Judah.

What is Your ‘Tower’?

SCRIPTURE Studied: Genesis 9-11

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

3 They began saying to each other, “Let’s make bricks and harden them with fire.” (In this region bricks were used instead of stone, and tar was used for mortar.)4 Then they said, “Come, let’s build a great city for ourselves with a tower that reaches into the sky. This will make us famous and keep us from being scattered all over the world.” Gen 11:3-4 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Way back in the days when the earth was just being first populated we read about how the people found the need to build something that they could look on to identify themselves – some great accomplishment that they achieved. God saw that this was leading to pride and bragging rights for this clan so He intervened and placed a stumbling block to prevent them from the selfish desires that He saw in them. In fact, this is where the different languages started, for in verse 7 we are told how this was designed to confuse the people and stop them from self destruction. As I look at our world today I question myself of where our ‘towers’ are being built, and I had no trouble thinking of several that might give the same impression as to what God must have seen with the Tower of Babel:

  • Momentous Church Buildings – yes, we needn’t look very far to see this ‘Tower’. We talk about churches today as ‘The Crystal Cathedral’ (known for it’s beautiful, large glass structure) or ‘Liverpool Cathedral’ (known for its 31 ton bell installed in the tallest tower some 219 feet above ground). I agree that these are beautiful church buildings and I have no doubt that they probably perform great work for the Lord, but is this what we want to be known as? Would it not be good to be known as ‘The Church that ministers to the inner city’ or ‘The Church where folk come to know Christ every week’ or ‘The place where Jesus is found every week’? I believe that the true church will continue to be a ‘great’ church or ministry when it can succeed in any location in which it relocates, or any building in which it meets, or when its leadership is assumed by another leader, when attendees are constantly bringing in friends to meet Jesus, when communities look to that church as a ministry arm of the Lord Jesus Christ, because it reminds them of everything they have every heard about Jesus.
  • Big homes, fancy vehicles, big expensive televisions, etc. – Things that we tend to become know as having. In other words when we are identified by those things acquired, rather than by the Christian principles or character that we display in the best, or worst, circumstances every day, then we have a ‘Tower’ that we have built or bought to represent us.

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Father I am reminded that You gave all that You had (Your precious Son) so that I may live eternally with You in Heaven. You didn’t sacrifice a great mountain that You created – although You designed and created some real beauties. I pray that people that I come in contact with may later refer to us as the “Child of God that led me to Christ”, or the “Christian that helped me in my time of trouble and despair” or “The friend that visited me when I was sick” or “He’s from that church where many of the folk from my community are coming to know Jesus”! May my church never be known as anything but an extension of Your love and caring for a lost and dying world. Please teach me daily to stay away from building any ‘towers’ that may prevent or distract my witness of You to this lost world in which I live. May the lost see so much of Jesus in and through me that they would have a deep desire to know You.

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