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

Posts tagged ‘obstacles’

Sin Will Hold Back God’s Hand of Blessing

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-08-09
SCRIPTURE

From:

Joshua 7:13 (TLB)

Text:

 13 “Get up! Tell the people, ‘Each of you must undergo purification rites in preparation for tomorrow, for the Lord your God of Israel says that someone has stolen from him, and you cannot defeat your enemies until you deal with this sin.
OBSERVATION:
When God sent Joshua and the Israelites to conquer Jericho, He gave specific instructions to them about what should be destroyed (pretty much everything), and what must be brought back for the temple of the living God (silver and gold). God knew that there were some who disobeyed Him and brought back valuables for themselves. They sinned against God. Because of this unconfessed sin, God chose to see the Israelites punished when they went to battle against the people of Ai.
APPLICATION:
In chapter 7 of Joshua, we could see where the sinful acts mentioned above was performed by one person, yet God allowed many of the Israelite army to be killed by the very small army of Ai. Joshua was crushed by this and he mourned and prayed before God. Of course, God knew who was guilty, but He found a way to show the Israelites that it all boiled down to one man who then confessed his sin before God and the people. This made me think of how this applies to us today. Friends, we often sit and ponder why certain things happen to us, our church, our town, our state and even our country. We are quick to judge that it must be our run-away child that’s bringing judgment on our home; or the pastors and leaders of our church who make bad judgment calls that, in turn, causes churches to close its doors; or perhaps the president of a country who is so awful that our country is going to Hell. Friends, I don’t believe that we have to look very far, for often there is sin right within our own lives, even though we try our best to portray perfection. One of the very sad truths that come from this story is that, the sins of one man destroyed his whole family, a fair number of his army, and wreaked havoc on his leader who was totally heartbroken about what was happening under his leadership. Often we think that our absence from church is unnoticeable and our sin is insignificant because it only impacts us personally, but isn’t it a good reminder that our lack of commitment and our willingness to do our own thing, could impact a whole family; a whole church; or a whole lot more? We must remember friends, that a Christian might influence those around him into accepting Jesus as Lord, or he might be so hardened and obstinate towards God that he causes God’s anger to flare against a whole church or community because of his selfish and sinful attitude. You do make a difference friend, so seek the face of Jesus to help you be all that you have committed to Him, and more. Allow God to make you a usable vessel in His vineyard and not a roadblock to others.
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, thank You for showing Your love towards us, even while we were still sinners without any hope. Representing You before our lost family and friends is such a great honor and privilege, but please help us to always be mindful that we could very easily become an ‘Achan’ as we take our eyes off You and allow sin to filter into our lives again. I don’t believe that anyone desires to be like ‘Achan’, so please help us Lord to stay closely in tuned with You so that our hearts will recognize when Satan tries to attack. We are Yours Lord, and we want to keep it that way until You call us home to glory, but we need You to guide us daily, and we need Your strength to help us make decisions that honor You. The glory belongs to You 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 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!

‘Mountains’ That Seem Impassable

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-06-09
SCRIPTURE

From:

Numbers 21:33-35 (GW)

Text:

33 Then they turned and followed the road that goes to Bashan. King Og of Bashan and all his troops came out to fight the Israelites at Edrei.

34 The Lord said to Moses, “Don’t be afraid of him. I’ll hand him, all his troops, and his land over to you. Do to him what you did to King Sihon of the Amorites, who ruled in Heshbon.” 35 The Israelites defeated him, his sons, and all his troops, leaving no survivors. And they took possession of his land.

OBSERVATION:
God delivered His people, the Israelites, from the hands of the Egyptians. He led them by day and by night through the wilderness and taught them many lessons, including how they should conquer fear; obstacles; times of need and desperation; and situations that would remind them of huge ‘mountains’ that may seem impassable in their eyes.
APPLICATION:
I’m sure you’ve heard the slogan ‘If God takes you to it, He will see you through it’. Real neat thought to hear from your preacher when you’re sitting in a ‘cushy’ church and everything is great at the time, right? But what happens when disaster hits; or huge medical decisions become necessary; or you encounter battle after battle each day? In fact, you begin to feel like each day you awake, you are faced with ‘mountains’ at every turn. Can you imagine what Moses must have felt when he saw the many ‘mountains’ each day that faced the thousands and thousands of people that were looking up to him for leadership, protection and direction? Let me suggest to you that your hope and your security in Jesus Christ begins with a personal relationship with Him. Not because you attend church with your parents, or even attend church now with your own family. A personal relationship begins with a heartfelt decision to accept Jesus not only as you would another friend, but to give Jesus full leadership and control in your life. Notice how Moses sought out God about the battle he and his group were facing at Edrei? We all know that in any battle, we need to strategize and get out there and fight. However, when God is your King and your Lord, you are to always seek His will. For when ‘mountains’ stand in our way, we should always remember that God created the ‘mountains’, so if He wants to remove them, or make a way through them for us, He can simply speak the word. I gave several examples of ‘mountains’ you may be facing today, may I encourage those of you that have a personal relationship with Jesus to seek His face and worship Him, for He is still God. Thank Him for the blessings and the challenges He has helped you through. Then seek His reassurance and/or direction for all you are facing, or will face in the days ahead. Allow Him to love on you and comfort you through every facet of your life, including all the ‘mountains’; miracles; opportunities; disappointments; and encouraging times. ‘He’s got this’ friend, we just need the faith, humility and confidence to let Him. Can you commit to that today?
PRAYER:
So many times in life we may stop and question ‘Why me Lord’. However Lord, as we are reminded of Your power shown to Moses and the Israelites, we recognize that had it not been for the challenges, they may not have sought You out at all. Had it not been for the miracles, they would not have known about Your awesome power. Please teach us to always praise You, and accept Your response to our prayer request when you say ‘no’, realizing that it is not the same as not answering our prayer at all. We petition You because we know the answer could be ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Lord, we pray that we may be an extension of You to a lost world. This will include giving Your ‘no’ answer even at those times that we may personally wish it was ‘yes’. Please grant us more faith to be more like You; act more like You; and obediently follow Your Word and Your perfect will for us, and those we lead or influence. 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!

What Precedes the ‘THEN’?

The Holy Bible (The Contemporary English Version – Isaiah 58:8,14 and 59:1-2): 8 Then your light will shine like the dawning sun, and you will quickly be healed. Your honesty will protect you as you advance, and the glory of the Lord will defend you from behind.

14 Then you will truly enjoy knowing the Lord.

59:1 The Lord hasn’t lost his powerful strength; he can still hear and answer prayers.
2 Your sins are the roadblock between you and your God. That’s why he doesn’t answer your prayers or let you see his face.

Thoughts: This reading in Isaiah really impacted me today, and I would encourage you to read both chapter 58 and 59 so you could see the scope, and the happenings from which Isaiah prophesied. God got my attention to think about the things going on in my life that might need to be attended to before he would bless me with the things after the ‘THEN’ mentioned in verses 8 and 14. Based on this scripture, here’s where I believe God wants to bless those that take care of the sinfulness that comes before the ‘Then’:

  • The light of Jesus would shine brightly through us to touch the life of another (vs 8);
  • Quick healing would occur in our physical and/or spiritual lives (vs 8);
  • Our honesty/integrity would be solidified to impress the lost for Jesus (vs 8);
  • Our lives would be so filled with Jesus that His glory would overwhelm us and act as our defense (vs 8);
  • We would truly enjoy knowing the Lord (vs 14)!

Friends, these things are very applicable to each of us. In fact, in 59:1-2 we are told to stop trying to blame God for unanswered prayer, for our sins are the roadblock. I believe that this affirms what precedes the ‘Then’; what needs our attention before we could expect to receive His rich blessings. So friends, as I have been challenged this morning, I will also challenge you. Please talk to God, seek His forgiveness for the hindrances in your life, and then ask Him to speak very clearly and openly to you through these chapters. See what He has to say to You. By using the contact information in the footnote, I would love to hear back from you on how God spoke to you in this passage! Better still, reply to the blog on my website so others may also be blessed by your response. It could be in totally different ways to how He spoke to me, for He knows what each of us need in our lives and will meet our needs! God loves you friend, and He wants to shower you with His blessings so that you may go on to be His loyal and effective representative!

Prayer: Lord, I am constantly amazed by Your Word and how I can find such truth and relevant direction each day for my Christian walk and witness. Thank You for giving us a glimpse of Yourself and Your mighty works! I’m sure that there is much to clean up in my life before I could be purely used by You in Your service/ministry, for a holy and righteous God cannot reside in a sin-infested soul. Father, this requires strength far beyond anything that I am capable of, but in faith I come before You asking for forgiveness of my sin and asking that you replace that ugly void with the sweet aroma of Your grace. I badly want to get beyond the ‘THEN’ and see Your will being fulfilled through me for Your glory and to affect the lives of unbelievers so that they too might follow You. I Need You Every Hour of every day oh Lord. Please impact the readers of this devotional today for a closer walk with You, is my humble and sincere prayer dear Lord, for it is in Your name and for Your sake that I ask, with a thankful heart, 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!

God is still God!

SCRIPTURE Studied: Genesis 12

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

7 Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, “I will give this land to your descendants. ” And Abram built an altar there and dedicated it to the Lord, who had appeared to him.8 After that, Abram traveled south and set up camp in the hill country, with Bethel to the west and Ai to the east. There he built another altar and dedicated it to the Lord, and he worshiped the Lord.9 Then Abram continued traveling south by stages toward the Negev. 10 At that time a severe famine struck the land of Canaan, forcing Abram to go down to Egypt, where he lived as a foreigner. Gen 12:7-10 (NLT)

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

At the beginning of this chapter it is so amazing to see God at work in Abram’s life, and also Abram being so obedient to leave his hometown and all the people that he knew, to move to a foreign land far away. In these verses, it is also interesting to note that during Abram’s journey everything was not rosy, no, everything did not go without a hitch and/or challenges. In fact, while passing through Canaan there was a great famine that hit the area. Now in a perfect world, most of us would say that if this was a journey destined by God, led and directed by Him, then why would there be obstacles. Friends this is the same way it is today. Just because we surrender our hearts to the Lord, we are not exempted from all the trials and tribulations of this world – at least as long as we live in this world! Often challenges will come our way – the question, or challenge for us is to determine is, which way will we go? A life totally surrendered to God will always do like Abram did, we will wait for further instructions, while during the interim challenge, looking to God for direction and depending on Him for strength to overcome. I believe that often our faith is determined by how we handle trials, not just on how well we do during the times of blessings and riches. God is still God during the highs, and during the lows of our lives. We must insure that our faith holds strong daily, because we don’t know what may be in store for us each day. Let’s think in terms of a partnership, we don’t jump ship on our partner on a day when things are rough, nor do we when our partnership celebrates its highs. A true partnership stays in tact during both good and bad times. So should our relationship with God. What are you facing today? Trust only in God and never lean on your own understanding, for only He knows what lies ahead for us. I love the words of that gospel song “God of the Mountain”, listen to it and be blessed as you reflect on the words of this Bible passage.

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

Like in the case of Abram, You bless me beyond measure each day oh God, and this morning I want to say thank You with all of my heart. Please forgive me when I worry about the challenges I see in life from the small perspective of my personal abilities. Please help me to stay so focused on You that I will always look through Your eyes and therefore face life’s challenges with the benefit of Your unlimited power and Your everlasting love for me. I believe that as I place my faith totally in You, I will always receive Your protection and You will bring me through life’s challenges in ways that will bring You glory. I know that this may not always come in the way that I may personally desire, but Lord I pray that You will help me to hide behind the cross and allow Your glory to shine through in all that I do or say. Self is insignificant in the whole scheme of things, for only those things that are done for Christ will last. May Your love shine through in all that is done in Your name this Christmas time! Thank You for sending Your Son as a babe, so that we may ultimately be re-born into life with You, and accepted into Your kingdom!

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