|Proverbs 4:20-23 (Voice)|
|Solomon was able to share these Godly words to us, but also speak from the experience of his father about the results of letting our minds and imagination run wild, and how it impacts the heart and controls your actions. This matter was close to home for him, experientially, plus you might remember that Solomon was the benefiter of very Godly wisdom. So even though most people feel like they have life under control, Solomon’s advice is still rock solid even today.|
|From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks! That’s one of many sayings that come to mind as we meditate on this Scripture today. I realize that the first barrier each of us will face with this advice, is that we think we are all ‘good’ people and our intentions are always good, very clear, and abundantly obvious to the person we are dealing with, correct? If you answered ‘yes’ to that question, then I would suggest that after you get up from kneeling before your Maker in sincere repentance, that you re-read the Scripture and possibly this blog! Friends, in case you haven’t noticed: if you hang around drunks, they will soon have you drinking; if you hand around company that curse at every opportunity, you will soon be sneaking in a few curse words in almost every sentence; if you hang around children of God and hear about their many blessings that they attribute to Jesus’ love and mercy, then you will soon be wanting to know about the same and apply it to your life. When you see the scales tipping towards righteous thoughts, words and deeds, then I believe that it will confirm that you are on the right track. If not, I believe that God is opening your mind and heart to realize that something is lacking – perhaps inadequate time in His Word, or perhaps way too much time hanging around folk that answer to a different leader than you do. Yes, I am saying that you will deal with a spiritual battle, if the Holy Spirit lives within you and is leading you in the right path. Friends, if your heart is filled with the love, actions and thoughts of our Lord, then you will act like Him and talk as He would. Conversely, if your heart is polluted with the devil and his evil attitudes and deeds, then you find yourself frustrated, because you have asked Jesus to come and live within you, yet you are heating up the internal battle by pouring in the ways of the world and it’s ungodly leader – Satan. There’s a little chorus I sang in children’s Sunday School “O be careful little eyes what you see”. If you know that chorus, you will remember that it also includes what you hear, what you do and where you walk. In other words, learn, speak, act and look at things that are Godly so that you may guard your heart – the internal barometer of your whole being!|
|Lord Jesus, thank You for not only living among us and showing us how to live in a way that is pleasing to Your Father, but also for leaving with us the Comforter – the Holy Spirit, who will guide us into righteous living, and help us guard our hearts that belong to You. Lord, may we be found righteous and sold out to You in every aspect of life. May it be evident to everyone that we come into contact with, and may You be glorified because of everything that You accomplish in us, and through us. AMEN!|
|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!|
THE HOLY BIBLE (New Living Translation – 2 Timothy 2:20-22): 20 In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. 21 If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work. 22 Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.
THOUGHTS: One of the things that I love about God’s Word is that it not only tells us what not to do, but it also doesn’t leave it up to us to decide on our own what we think we should do, for it gives us a righteous path to follow that leads us towards the characteristics of Jesus. In verse 22, Timothy, together with us, are encouraged to run from youthful lusts. This tells me that we will be battered with temptation and youthful lusts, and we must learn to get away – run far away from them. I heard a story of a drunk who came to know the Lord. After this turn of events, the man would travel a different route every day between work and home in order to avoid the bar that he often frequented before Christ. I believe he ran from those lusts that held him captive before Christ. Likewise, I believe that we/Christians need to make very conscious decisions to avoid certain circumstances, places and things that might otherwise take us off track from our Christian walk and commitment to the Lord. Let’s run from them! Now, here are the things that we should run towards: righteous living – things that are right in God’s sight, for we are only righteous because of God; faithfulness – practice faith in God in our daily walk. Live in faith, and boast of it every time possible; love – not just natural lustful love, but actually practice the love that God showed us through His Son Jesus. Sacrificial, humble, unselfish love; peace – this is an unworried soldier who is content in the direction, support and leadership of his Chief, and convinced of the strength and agility of his fellow soldiers; and time together with other Christians – we become much like those we hang out with, for we strengthen our character by everything we experience from them, good or bad. ‘Birds of a feather flock together’, so we should be right at home fellowshipping and worshiping with other believers and we should desire to spend even more time with them. So where are you at in all of this friend? Have some things that you need to deliberately run from? Satisfied from the way your life is going, and your relationship with the Lord, that you are convinced that you are running towards and practicing the right things in your life? If not, may I remind you that the God who made you, and this universe, is available and ready to help you when you call on His name, right now? He is able friend! Know Him and know the peace that comes only from Him, then live like you are convinced that His peace is deep inside of you! I need this, and I believe you do also!
PRAYER: Dear God, may our lives be intentionally lived for You and according to the design outlined in Your Word. Thank You for the direction given to us today by Your servant Paul. I believe that Your servants will only be effective when we live according to Your design and in subjection to Your will and command. I also believe that for this world to change, they must see Christians being Christ-like and living according to what our handbook (the Bible) says. Lord, I pray that You will start with me, and I also plead with You to touch the lives of my readers, that they also may see the need for recommitting their lives to Your call on their lives and therefore live like children of God. Fall afresh on us dear Lord and allow Your Holy Spirit to indwell us with power to overcome sin and the temptations of this world. Help us to run away from sin, and instead, run towards You and display the characteristics Paul reminded us of today. For we are to be holy, even as you are holy! These requests I ask in the precious and holy 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!