Refresh The Hearts of Believers

In this translation, verse 7 reads that Philemon was encouraging and reviving the hearts of fellow saints. In the NLT, we are told that Paul was excited because Philemon refreshed the hearts of believers! Ever been guilty of that? Let’s meditate on how we might do that…

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2022-09-21
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Philemon 1:4-7
Translation: Voice Translation (Voice)

Bible Text: I am constantly thanking God for you in my prayers because I keep hearing about your love and faith toward our Lord Jesus and all those set apart for His purposes. Here’s what I’ve been praying on your behalf:
Thank You, Father, for Philemon. I pray that as he goes and tells his story of faith, he would tell everyone so that they will know for certain all the good that comes to those who put their trust in the Anointed One.
My brother, because you are out there encouraging and reviving the hearts of fellow saints with such love, this brings great joy and comfort to me.

OBSERVATION: In this translation, verse 7 reads that Philemon was encouraging and reviving the hearts of fellow saints. In the NLT, we are told that Paul was excited because Philemon refreshed the hearts of believers! Ever been complimented for that? Let’s meditate on how we might do that…

APPLICATION: I don’t believe there is anything more satisfying than to walk in on someone speaking something complimentary about you! I suppose the next best thing is probably to read the compliments on our character in a letter, email or newspaper. Unfortunately this hardly ever occurs until the time of our memorial service! Now, I realize that we never do the work of the Lord for man’s applause, but I also know that we each need encouraging from time to time. Paul’s applause to Philemon was all about the feedback that Paul was receiving from the church members that met in Philemon’s home. Friends, we must remember that as we strive diligently to live as an example of our Master and Lord, if no one around us notices, then how do you suppose we are doing? Philemon lived such a life of love in the presence of his congregants, that Paul likened it to something that we do to our computer screens when we ‘refresh‘ the screen! It’s like something that we diligently pray for in our churches, when we pray for ‘revival‘, for we want our hearts to be ‘refreshed‘ in the love of Jesus, and our spirits refreshed to the state of when we first met Jesus, when we fell deeply in love with Him for saving our soul. Friends, I believe that God would encourage us to not wait for our encouragement, before we bless the souls of those around us. Imagine, they may see the love of Jesus in us, even while they are alive to enjoy, and be blessed by it. They may be encouraged in knowing that Jesus is alive, and they may be rejuvenated in wanting to serve Christ even more fully. Friends, when we do the Lord’s work, we also will be encouraged. May we all learn to reach out to Jesus and desire a filling of His sweet Holy Spirit, so that His Spirit may flow through us and electrify anyone’s spirit who happens to come near us. People who need the Lord are constantly looking at those who say they have a personal relationship with Him, so they could see what a Jesus filled life looks like. How are you doing with that friend? Can others see enough of Jesus in you that they want to be around you, hoping that some of the joy and love that you exude would rub off on them! Draw close to God friend, and He will draw close to you. In fact, He will overfill your joy and love, so that others will want to know the source of it all!

PRAYER: Thank you Jesus for allowing Paul to encourage his Brother, Philemon, based on the great work that he saw from, and heard of, him. Thank You for speaking to our hearts through this Scripture today, so that our hearts might be overfilled and encouraged. May we be looking for avenues to encourage and share Your precious love with others. Please give us more love to share and many more opportunities in which to share that love with others. Draw the unsaved to Yourself Lord, and if my believing readers and listeners may be of service through some awesome act of love, then I beg You to please use us for Your service. Please have an impact on all those who will read this devotional today. 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!

My Help When Fear & Troubles Come

It seems very evident that the Psalmist spent some valuable time alone with God. It is also evident that David experienced very intimate times with God, for it helped him to conclude that God had saved him, been his rescuer, defender and his very fortress. I am convinced that this is the same awesome God that’s still available to those who know and trust in Him today! If you know Him, rejoice with me as we are reminded of His qualities. If you have not accepted Him as your Lord and Savior, tune in to the full devotional for reasons why you should accept Him as your Lord!

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2022-09-03
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Psalm 62:1-2
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 1 I stand silently before the Lord, waiting for him to rescue me. For salvation comes from him alone. Yes, he alone is my Rock, my rescuer, defense and fortress. Why then should I be tense with fear when troubles come?

APPLICATION: Based on our personal experiences with God, I wonder what words we might use to describe our God. Let’s look deeper at the adjectives used by David as he tried to describe his awesome God. Perhaps we could decide whether we have witnessed any of these same characteristics of God in our lives, and the value we attribute to those qualities:
~ Our salvation: Can you thank God for the salvation you found through the precious gift of Jesus – your Savior and your Redeemer? There is no other way into heaven than through the shed blood of Jesus, my friend. How often do you thank Him for that precious gift, and brag on it before others, as David did in these verses?
~ Our Rock: Solid; impenetrable; immovable; dependable; will not give in or crumble under extreme weight or pressure – these are some of the words that can be used to describe a rock. David described God as his ‘Rock’ because he had seen many of these characteristics and strengths in his relationship with God.
~ Our Rescuer: This makes me think of times that one has been in deep trouble and have been noticeably rescued from that trouble because of prayers asked of God to pull you to safety. Having a personal relationship with the God of this universe, means that He can and will rescue you even when it may seem hopeless in your own eyes. Remember, He’s the one who walked on water; He’s the one who parted the Red Sea for His people to walk safely through; and he’s the one who performed miracle after miracle in Biblical accounts and in the lives of those we know and love today. Yes, dear friend, He could certainly rescue you from your situation today if you place your faith and trust in Him!
~ Our Defender: I tend to think of someone who will defend against those intending to harm their loved ones. Our primary worry here on earth is Satan, for his intentions are simply to kill, steal and destroy us, while leading us away from God. In knowing Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we can agree with David on this, that because we serve the supreme God of this universe, He will defend us from the evil one, especially when we pray as He taught us: ‘lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil’. Ask Jesus to do this, child of God. Then be ready to brag on Him as your Defender, just like David did!
~ Our Fortress: In the Bahamas, and here in Florida, there are forts that were built to help our ancestors defend against invaders. The walls are several feet thick in some places, and were built to keep our soldiers safe from an incoming cannon ball. So, when the enemy was approaching, they all went to their ‘fortress’ for safety and protection. I believe that’s about how David felt, and I believe that’s about how we should feel. In our case, the enemy is waiting to attack every time we turn around, so being safely inside our ‘fortress’ means that we know the Head of Heaven’s Army and He knows us! He will reassure us of the safety and security of His loving arms. I trust that today you are very confident in knowing that you can run to the security of your ‘Fortress’, safe in the arms of our Lord and Savior. Jesus Christ! A stranger knocking on the door of the fortress in the height of battle will not be allowed in, for they personally chose to reject that security. Let that not be your case friend. Look full into the eyes of Jesus today and accept His offer to be your Lord and Savior – your Fortress in every circumstance of life.
Can you add to this list of attributes, friends? Would you remove any of the attributes mentioned by David, because you have not experienced them in your relationship with God, yet?

PRAYER: Thank You Father for sending us Your Son to be our Salvation; our Rock; our Rescuer; our Defender; and our Fortress! Lord, I pray that today many will come to the foot of the cross and accept You as Lord and Savior, for all the reasons already mentioned in this devotional. I am proud to know that You accepted my plea for forgiveness and acceptance into Your kingdom, and I thank You from the bottom of my heart for being all of these things mentioned, and much, much more. Lord, I look forward to being with You in glory some sweet day, but while allowed to remain here on earth, I ask that You continue to watch over me and lead me to help another beggar looking for bread – the Bread of Life! 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!

Spiritual Exercise

I find it amazing how Paul found ways to explain himself, and how his illustrations fit so perfectly with what is going on around us – even today! Staying fit – most people will tell you that they are going to the gym, or they have an exercise regiment, or they are on some sort of diet, in making every effort to try and stay physically fit. With that in mind, wouldn’t it also make sense for us to regularly exercise ways to stay spiritually fit? Let’s study this some more as we look into this Scripture today……

DATE WRITTEN: Sunday, 2022-08-21
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 1 Timothy 4:7-8
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: Don’t waste time arguing over foolish ideas and silly myths and legends. Spend your time and energy in the exercise of keeping spiritually fit. Bodily exercise is all right, but spiritual exercise is much more important and is a tonic for all you do. So exercise yourself spiritually, and practice being a better Christian because that will help you not only now in this life, but in the next life too.

APPLICATION: I believe we all may have given some thought as to why we want to stay physically fit. For some, it may ease certain aches and pains; For some it may help their breathing; For some it may help avoid certain medications by keeping the heart healthy; For some, it prepares them for a huge competition that’s coming up; and a plethora of other reasons, I’m sure. So then, why do you suppose that God, through His servant Paul, found it necessary to get our attention in staying spiritually fit? Let’s first look at the pitfalls when we are not spiritually fit. I believe that this is where we are easily provoked into sin, for we have no real, current, depth and/or communication with the Master. There are really two parts to this, first of all we must know what to do and what’s expected of us. This means that we have to learn what’s expected of us by our Lord. As in the business world, this means that we not only learn the Word, but we also keep on learning and refreshing our knowledge of the Word. Secondly, we must put into action all that we learn. Imagine in the business world where you might tell an auditor that your books, practices and overall processes are in order because you read about what’s required? That will absolutely not protect you against exceptions, since your auditor will compare what you are actually doing, against what written regulations say that you must be doing. Our Christianity is much the same. God has set forth a wonderful book that details His commands, and it shows us how our Savior lived perfectly while here on earth by following the commands of His Father. For us to do the same, we must know those commands, we must be in the Bible daily so that our minds might be spiritually fit for battle against the Evil One at every opportunity that he aims to challenge us. Yes, I know that some are fast studies and therefore only need to read through the Bible once but let me assure you that the Word of God is very real and it is pointed to help us each and every day, no matter what we are facing today for the very first time in history. To practice what we learn, we must be diligent to apply God’s rules and commands in every aspect of our lives, with the Master’s help. In fact, if we aim at perfection in all our ways, then we might be mistaken frequently for the One that we are imitating. Has that happened to you recently? Friends, when we hit our finger with a hammer, our immediate response will often reflect what’s inside of us. Likewise, when we are hit with life’s challenges and the temptations of Satan, our immediate response will reflect what has filled our heart, and how close we are to the Savior – how fit we are spiritually. How are you doing friend? Seek the Lord while He may be found, and allow Him to guide your steps, your actions and your speech. May it be known to God, and obvious to all those you meet, that the blood of Jesus as washed your sins away and that Jesus lives within every fiber of your being!

PRAYER: This is a very challenging passage of Scripture Lord Jesus. One in which we are reminded that we don’t have all the answers, and we desperately need You in every aspect of our lives, every day. We are reminded that without You we can truly do nothing of value for the Kingdom. Please open our hearts and draw us to a closer walk with You and a life truly dependent on the power of Your sweet Holy Spirit. Lord, You know all too well how weak we are, but thank God You also know that You created us to be like You. So Lord, again today we beg of You to forgive us for those evil things that we do, and the awkward things that we say – our spiritual weaknesses. Please draw us close to You and melt our hearts to closely depend on You in all walks of life, so that You may be glorified in every aspect of our lives. 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!

Waiting on God

David had such a relationship with God that it seemed natural for him to speak his heart to God. David realized how much he had messed up, but He also knew the One who is perfect, and he wanted desperately to be like Him. But he could not achieve perfection on his own, so he pleaded his case before the only Perfect One. Is that not us today?

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2022-05-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Psalm 25:4-5
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 
DEMONSTRATE Your ways, O Eternal One.
    Teach me to understand so I can follow.
EASE me down the path of Your truth.
    FEED me Your word
    because You are the True God who has saved me.
    I wait all day long, hoping, trusting in You.

APPLICATION: We could learn a lot from David, for we are so quick to beat up on ourselves, or seek help from every other source, before finally conceding to the One who could lead us to all truth, knowledge and understanding so that we could obediently follow the ways of our Lord and His written Word. There are a few keywords in these two verses that I wanted to expand on, hoping that we might better understand the heart of this humble servant of God. David knew that there was only One who could possibly help him, so he pleaded before his God:

  • Demonstrate – Lord, please help me to understand by showing me through real-life examples;
  • Teach – Assume that I know nothing and simply open up my mind to a full understanding of what You would have me to do, oh Lord;
  • Ease – Understanding my weaknesses and inadequacies, please go easy on me as I am slow to learn, but know that I sincerely desire to know more about Your ways and Your Word;
  • Feed – Pour knowledge and understanding into me like one would poor water into the beak of a very thirsty bird. Fill me with Your Word so that I may constantly live in obedience to all that You desire of me;
  • Wait – I am willing to wait for as long as You desire, Lord, for following Your will is just that important to me.

When all else fails, make it known to God that there is nothing more important than to obey His Word, and honor Him in everything that you do and say. Allow Him to work miraculously through you to reach the lost in your circle of influence for His glory. God referred to David as a man after His own heart, so I believe that as we apply this prayer of David’s in all sincerity, and follow the Master in all that He demands of us, we will begin to reflect the true image of God in our lives, so that we may become effect witnesses for Him. May this be your heart’s cry today precious friends, for God loves You more than you could ever comprehend!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, we want to be just like You! However we have so much that separates us in that quest. There is so much that we need to surrender to You so that we might be filled with Your Holy Spirit completely and therefore be led in total surrender to Your will and Your way for us. Lord, this wicked world needs to see more of You in those who claim You as Lord. Begin with me Lord. Allow me to be so filled with Your grace and Your mercy that those in my realm of influence might desire to know the One who influences my life every day. Thank You for the lessons taught through Your servant David, May all who read this blog be encouraged to follow in the steps of David – towards being recognized by You as a person after Your own heart. May You be glorified in and through Your precious children today, is my prayer, in deepest humility, 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!

Don’t Be A Stumbling Block

In verses 24-26, Paul showed the people how God had turned some of the Jews away from the Gospel, so that the Gentiles would have a better opportunity of accepting Him. And although that was only temporary, it served the specific intention of God. In verses 33-34 Paul is celebrating the wisdom of God as he reflects back. Together this Scripture should cause us to remember that God was, still is, and always will be in charge of His creation. It seems that churches today may be hindered by some who feel like they are in charge, as they seek to gain recognition and power. As we meditate, let us look to our Creator and sustainer of earth for what He might accomplish and how we might become involved in His work!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Romans 11:25-26; 33-34 (TLB)

TEXT: 25 I want you to know about this truth from God, dear brothers, so that you will not feel proud and start bragging. Yes, it is true that some of the Jews have set themselves against the Gospel now, but this will last only until all of you Gentiles have come to Christ—those of you who will. 26 And then all Israel will be saved…..

33 Oh, what a wonderful God we have! How great are his wisdom and knowledge and riches! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his methods! 34 For who among us can know the mind of the Lord? ……

APPLICATION:   As I meditated on the Word of God, I was reminded, in awe, of His great wisdom, and His awesome power to fulfill His Godly purpose. This particular Scripture reminded me of a sad story, but one that brought awesome results. Many years ago, my cousin, a young man about 35 years old, was electrocuted and fell to his death from a roadside electric pole. The mourning of that mother, my aunt, could be heard over most of the small town. However, before the sun set the following day, my dad (brother to the grieving mother) had surrendered his heart to Jesus! He then became a Godly influence to his five children until the day he died. What happened in this Scripture today, also reminds me an awful lot of our churches today, for it almost seems like the movement of Christ has been slowed down and possibly even dwindled some, and I wonder if it is not God dealing more intensely in the hearts of so many that are totally lost. This may not make total sense to everyone, but I wonder if God is not saying to our churches: ‘put away selfish desires, prejudices and pride. Remember, your wisdom is nothing compared to the wisdom of our awesome God. For people to gain wisdom from and in you will teach them very little however, to know Christ will gain them all eternity’. The Bible reminds us that God’s ways and thoughts are way beyond our own, so that tells me that I can’t possibly understand all that He’s up to. However, I know from the Word that God made us all to worship and adore Him, so shouldn’t our every effort be in seeking ways to know Him better, accept Him more fully and worship Him in total surrender to self and this wicked world? It just seems like we are currently facing the same dilemma that Jesus spoke of in our Scripture verses today. For we hate to look at the evening news because of all the crime, violence and acts of hatred that fills our news portals, while churches are closing their doors in record numbers because of non-attendance, lack of giving and leadership. We hear excuses such as COVID, or the effects of war, but friends, we must remember that Jesus is coming back soon to collect His church. Can you even fathom how few will be taken up to glory with Him, compared to the huge population of earth? To the church, I would say with great urgency that people need the Lord. The Gentile population has grown, and unless we who are Christian, stand firm in our faith, lift up the banner of God so that the lost may recognize God in His greatness and accept Him as Lord, then there will be a massive divide on the day that Christ returns to take His bride away with Him. It would hurt my heart to think that God may have to push Christians aside, so that the unsaved may find Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, I have family and friends that I believe will be left behind if they remain unchanged. Assuming that many of you are in a similar position, I would encourage you to join me in praying to the God of this universe for a great movement upon our land. Oh that Jesus may rule and reign in our personal lives, our families, our churches, our communities and in our nations around the world, so that the people will know and believe in the sacrificial lamb of God – Jesus Christ. May the God of this universe become known as Everlasting King of this universe!

PRAYER:   Lord You are good and Your mercies endureth forever! In our Scripture today, we are reminded that although You created us to worship You, many refuse to do so. You created us in Your likeness hoping that we would live in similar fashion to Your example while here on earth, yet there are many who mock and scorn You and Your children, much like what occurred in times past. The warning signs of Your return are evident Lord, and we thank You for promising us that You will return for Your children! Heavenly Father, please soften the hearts of Your children, so that Your churches may be filled to capacity with worshipers longing to draw close to their Creator, our Everlasting God, and may this impact the unsaved like never before. 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 are not already connected in a local Bible teaching church, let me encourage you to find one so that you may grow in the love and stature of the King of all kings. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Guilty Of Following Christ’s Example

Like me, I bet you also heard your parents use the phrase ‘Practice What You Preach’ at every applicable opportunity! In today’s scripture Paul is also using this principle in his teaching to the Jews, and because it is God’s inspired Word, I believe it serves as a reminder to us as well. Paul noted that the behavior of God’s chosen people, the Jews, had a very negative impact on the Gentiles to whom he was trying to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I’m afraid that this may still be a real problem even today, so perhaps we should stop and meditate on what God had to say through His servant, Paul.

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2022-03-21
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Romans 2:21-24
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 21 … you teach others—then why don’t you teach yourselves? You tell others not to steal—do you steal? 22 You say it is wrong to commit adultery—do you do it? You say “Don’t pray to idols” and then make money your god instead. 23 You are so proud of knowing God’s laws, but you dishonor him by breaking them. 24 No wonder the Scriptures say that the world speaks evil of God because of you.

APPLICATION: I cringe when I hear folks say things like “your actions speak so loudly that I can’t hear what you are saying”. Because, unfortunately these folk are often right in saying these things. It hurts me deeply when I hear of church leaders caught in certain acts of sin, because they often have such a large following who is looking to them as a role model. No matter how often we tell folk that they should model their lives after Christ, not man, yet we see more fall out from church members when a pastor leaves, or a church leader is caught in an act of sin. The bottom line is that we all should be guilty of following Christ’s example so closely that people around us would see no difference between our actions and those they expect from Christ. When we surrender Lordship of our lives to Jesus, we ask Him to guide our footsteps every day so that we may walk like Him; guide our tongues each day so that we may talk like Him, and care so much for us each day that we may, in turn, love others like He would. Without Jesus Christ, it is virtually impossible to follow His ways each day in this world we live in, however, rest assured that in Christ, ALL things are possible. If friends of yours never read the first thing about the Bible, but they trust you enough to follow in your footsteps and obey your verbal instructions to them, who would they look like, Jesus Christ or the world? Remember, we are to be little ‘Christ’s’, so our friends following us could ultimately look the same! How are you doing? Do you have portions of your life still left to surrender to God, or are you comfortable that your life is in line with Jesus Christ? Please don’t let Jesus say to you on Judgment Day what Paul said to his fellow Jews, that people are cursing Christ because of you. As a parent we gloat at the times when others praise our children, because we feel a sense of pride in the job that we did in parenting. Let’s live our Christian lives following the same formula, so that Jesus may one day say “Well done good and faithful servant, when these children of Mine followed you, it was the same as them following Me, receive now the crowns I have prepared for you”! Let’s live with the end in mind friend!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I respectfully ask that I not be a stumbling block to anyone here on this earth. I pray that others may see enough of You in me that they will not be disappointed over their expectations of You. Lord, may I always represent You in ways that might lead others towards You. Please gently speak to my friends that may meditate on this devotional today, and lead them into a time of soul-searching and revival in their personal lives. Lord, it’s You that we live for. May that be evident in our words and actions today, is my humble prayer that I ask in Your very precious and holy name, 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!

What Will It Take For God To Heal Our Hearts?

I believe it is interesting how we have been blessed to see, yet if asked what we observed, we cannot state anything of significance that we saw. We may have also been blessed with the ability to hear well, yet if asked to repeat something that was said, one might swear that we were never present under the sound of a particular speech or teaching. Although we will observe that Paul had to rehearse with his crowd, the same thing that the Holy Spirit prompted Isaiah to share with his crowd. Yet after years and years of preaching, teaching and sharing the Word of God, one might observe that still today we display the same challenges. Why is that? In the last words of our Scripture verses God said that He wished this was not the case, because He would like to heal our hearts. Would we not be quite different in our ways and successful in our methods, if only we gave God access to our heart?

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2022-03-16
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Acts 28:25-27
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT: 25 …. “The Holy Spirit stated it well when he spoke to your ancestors through the prophet Isaiah:,
26 ‘I send you to this people to say to them, “You will keep learning, but not understanding. You will keep staring at truth but not perceiving it. 27 For your hearts are hard and insensitive to me—you must be hard of hearing! For you’ve closed your eyes so that you won’t be troubled by the truth, and you’ve covered your ears so that you won’t have to listen and be pierced by what I say. For then you would have to respond and repent, so that I could heal your hearts.”’

APPLICATION: Isaiah was a prophet sent and directed by God. When he prophesied under the inspiration of God, the people listened. However there came a time when God recognized that some of the folk were just not listening. Paul came across this same phenomenon in his days of ministry, so he shared this with his Jewish listeners who were challenged to believe the Word of God. I found this extremely revealing, because still today our pastors can preach the same sermon in our churches, as it is quite apparent that we’re present in the service, but from the blank stares and lack of participation, it is obvious that we are miles away. Think about it: we have folk that attend church who hear the Word of God, but they are convinced that it is for the person behind them. Their ears are shut to the application of the Word to their personal lives. However the most hurtful thing to me, are the ones that just refuse to listen and believe. It saddens me deeply how God has to send a disaster to awaken the hardened hearts of His people. Our churches were filled for a few Sunday’s after 9-11 and after our major hurricanes in Florida, as folk found the need for God to protect them and help them through that time of disaster. Then, as soon as they felt they had regained control, life went back to ‘normal’ for them. God is not trying to impose Himself on anyone, He just wants to heal us and give us the very best He has in store for us. Isn’t that a good thing that we should always desire? Friends, God has blessed us with so much, yet we use these gifts to oppose the very One who has blessed us. We have great knowledge, yet we reason away on why we are blessed, or not blessed, instead of giving all praise to God. We have great eyesight, yet like the prophet Isaiah said, we screw our eyes shut to the things of God and therefore preclude His healing and amazing blessings on us. Our hearing is perfect, yet we allow Satan to interfere and tell us that the Word of God is intended for that neighbor of ours who is much worse than us. The very last phrase of the quote from Isaiah really touched me: we have shut out everything about God because we don’t want to deal with our Maker, yet if only we would change this, He would heal our hearts! I believe this healing is one of not just our physical sickness, but also our disappointments, our brokenness, our loneliness, our defeats and ultimately, our sin. Friends, I serve a God just as I have described, and I would love to introduce you to Him. He will make your day brighter and so much more meaningful and purposeful. Please contact me if I can pray with you or help you in any way with this important decision. This could be the first of many days of joy in the security of my Lord! For those of you that know Him, please act like you do. Sing that song ‘Just a closer walk with thee’, then open the precious Word of God that He left just for us, and see what it is that He is ordering you to change or correct in your walk with Him. Open your eyes to the hurts and needs of those around you, and pray, pray, pray that God will intervene and heal His people today. They have tried the world and all it has to offer, but they are still lacking in so many ways. They need Jesus, my friend. I believe that one of His servants can help them redirect their lives today. Let it be you, dear follower of Christ!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, in spite of Your gracious hand upon Your people, and Your outstanding blessings poured out on us, yet You must be saddened by seeing us exclude You from our decision making, exclude Your active role in our lives when praise is directed towards us, and especially ignore You when You speak to us about the lost condition of our lives. I clearly got the picture in this scripture today, You want to heal our heart, yet we say ‘No thank You’. Father I thank You for softening my heart and giving me the boldness to accept You as my Lord and Savior back in 1976. I have many family and friends who are still hardened and refuse to make the necessary commitment to accept You as their Lord. Please humble them and soften their hardened hearts again today so that they may commit the rest of their lives to You and allow You full control, and ultimate healing of their sin problem. Dear God, there are important decisions we make every day, but none as important as the one that decides our eternal fate. My sincere prayer is that this will become very evident to my lost relatives today, 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!

The Prescription for Success

I believe that as an employer meditates on this devotional today, they may be reminded of why they can trust some employees to do their very best in the interest of their business; why some are happy even through very challenging times for the business; and why they can build their business around a few good employees like this because they have something solid and substantial built into their character that drives them to obedience, hard work, love for their coworkers, and always a bright hope for their employer! The formula for these promising employees is spelled right out in our Scripture today! It was proven through king Hezekiah, and it is available to each reader and listener who is obedient to God!

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2020-03-14
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 31:20–21
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 20 Throughout all Judah, King Hezekiah did what was right and what was pleasing to the Lord his God. 2He was successful, because everything he did for the Temple or in observance of the Law, he did in a spirit of complete loyalty and devotion to his God.

APPLICATION: I can hardly imagine what our families, our churches, our cities and our nation would be like if we had men following the example of King Hezekiah today! We are told in verse 21 that this king was extremely successful because….. everything he did was in a spirit of complete loyalty and devotion to God! Wow! In Bible Studies we are often reminded about the importance of loving our spouse in complete loyalty and obedience to God, and we might hear testimonies about the difference these characteristics make in the life and marriage of couples who remain in love with each other through good, and yes, even through challenging times. I could only imagine how much better our workplaces would be if we (Christians) went to work with a spirit of complete loyalty and devotion to God. Friends, I know that many employers will not allow Christianity to be promoted within the confounds of the workplace, but what is inside of us cannot be taken away! We take Christ into our jobs through our lives – our actions, our stands on certain things, through our sincere dedication to our work and our bosses. Christians should be the best employees for any employer, if we do our jobs in complete loyalty and dedication to God. He will stop us from cheating, stealing, lying, gossiping, and any other ungodly actions. God will drive us towards being the best in everything expected of us by our employer. In addition to committing yourself to loyalty and devotion to God, please remember to daily pray God’s blessings on your supervisor and on your employer. Yes, even the boss that may seem hard and uncaring towards you. Just as Jesus made a difference in your life, He will also impact the life of your boss, or that difficult supervisor! As you meditate on this devotional and consider following this commitment, please notice that Hezekiah had no conditions to his commitment, and I believe we could deduce that his commitment was evident in every aspect of his life. I’m sure I don’t need to remind you, but our churches, our families, our workplaces, our schools and our social clubs are all suffering from the lack of commitment by those who tell the world that they belong to God. The Word says that as a result of Hezekiah’s commitment, many conditions changed for the good, and he was successful in everything he did. So will you join me in committing to be completely loyal and devoted to God in every aspect of your life? The world so badly needs Jesus, perhaps one dedicated child of God making a difference in their workplace, their homes, etc. will bring hope to those who need the Lord. Do your part dear friend, and pray for the same success that Hezekiah had!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I’m sure that You never intended for us to be an image of You for others to look on, but rather that we might imitate You in everything You have taught us though Your Word and Your actions, so that they may be convinced of their need for Jesus. Thank You for the life of Hezekiah and the commitment displayed by this servant in loyalty and devotion to You. This impacted his world! But still today, our world is in trouble and many need to see a few good men and women who are dedicated to the One they say they belong to. Lord, may they see from our commitment, loyalty and devotion to You, that Jesus is alive and well, because of the evidence they see each day in us. Please forgive us Lord for the times we have acted just like the world, and not been a pure replica of You. Please help us to never be a stumbling block that prevents Your impact on the lost. Oh that You may be glorified and recognized in us, and may You be glorified on earth, as You are 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!

Don’t Be Paralyzed by Fear, Let Go and Let God Have His Way

Today we may be facing many battles. For some it might be a debilitating decease, for some it may be losing a loved one, while others may be facing the battle of divorce or separation. I believe that our leaders may be facing the battle of serious viruses, such as the coronavirus now rampant in many countries throughout the world. What shall we do? King Jehoshaphat was faced with an enormous battle and had a deep concern for the people that he ruled. Throughout this chapter from which our verse is taken, we could see how this King went boldly before the only One who has power over our battles – Almighty God. Perhaps you’re at a point where you need direction, let’s learn together from King Jehoshaphat how we must surrender our battles to the only One with perfect answers.

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2022-03-07
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 20:15
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 15 “Listen to me, all you people of Judah and Jerusalem, and you, O king Jehoshaphat!” he exclaimed. “The Lord says, ‘Don’t be afraid! Don’t be paralyzed by this mighty army! For the battle is not yours, but God’s!

OBSERVATION: Jehoshaphat feared the large, complex army that was facing he and his nation for which he had responsibility. Today we may be facing similar battles. Perhaps a debilitating decease; perhaps losing a loved one; or perhaps facing the battle of divorce or separation. National leaders may still be facing the challenges of Covid, while also keeping a close eye on the war and intention of Russia. If we’re not careful, we might throw our hands up as we ponder ‘What shall we do?’ Hopefully we could be reminded from our Scripture today that our peace, our hope and our rescue from all of life’s challenges lies in the powerful hands of our King, the King of all kings!

APPLICATION: Several lessons are in store for us today as we meditate on this story of king Jehoshaphat. We have more than enough challenges for each day that we open our eyes. What if we could learn to release the battles that our not ours to worry about? I believe that you, my readers, are no different to me, so I encourage you to read the whole chapter of 2 Chronicles 20 by clicking on the Bible reference link above. Here are some things that God drew to my attention:
~ The king acknowledged that he had a problem that was way over his head and beyond his capability;
~ The king was not ashamed of his inabilities. He not only went before God personally, but he called his people together and ordered a fast, so that together they might seek God’s face over this problem. The problem was bigger than the king, and he was prepared to seek someone greater who could help;
~ The king’s meeting with his people was not a time to plan their attack, but to humble themselves before Almighty God, seek His face, and ask for His direction and His powerful hand of protection;
~ In spite of the king being the main character in this story, God chose to respond through ‘just a man standing in the crowd’ as described by some commentaries. The king didn’t just pick up his toys and run on home with a disgruntled attitude about God not reporting back to him for his guided fast and his desperate prayer. A good reminder that we don’t control God, and that He uses the simple to confound the proud and the intelligent. It is always obvious that a response came from God, and not from the knowledge, abilities or self-worth of the king and/or his people;
~ There was no response back to the orders from God, other than full obedience! There was no need for the king to feel like he needed to have the last word. This was a ‘God’ thing, and nothing at all for which the king needed recognition from his people.
King Jehoshaphat was faced with a battle of proportions greater than anything he could handle. What kind of battles are you facing in your life dear friend? Do you know the God of king Jehoshaphat intimately? Are you at a place in your life where you could simply bow at His feet and lay your battles, or burdens there, being confident that He is still Lord of all and Master over all things that might impact us? Are you strong enough to ask of God, knowing that His response may not be your first choice? By asking, we know that there could be positive answers in store for us, or perhaps challenging answers that we were not expecting. Be willing to add to your prayer requests today: ‘Not my will, but Yours oh Lord – so long as You are glorified in everything today’.

PRAYER: Oh Lord, You are well aware of the battles we take on, especially those that we should totally surrender to You. We make ourselves sick mentally, and otherwise, because we assume lordship over these type issues. Please forgive us Lord, and strengthen us daily so that we may surrender our all to You and allow You to continue as God – the One in charge of all creation and the events surrounding every aspect of Your creation. Thank You for creating us to care about those that we connect with, but we need daily power to place them at Your feet and allow You to be God – in them, through them and over them. I praise You God for who You are, I surrender my all to You, knowing that Your love will sustain me as You work out every material indifference I may see all around me. Have Your will oh Lord, my King, my Redeemer and my Savior. Humble the hearts of all my readers and listeners. Draw them to the foot of the cross where they may look up – into Your wonderful face, and acknowledge Your awesome power. 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!

Delays Are Costly

Delays are often very frustrating, and often cause us to lose our patience! However, last weekend there were thousands of self induced delays that members of our churches made, when presented with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Meditate with me on what happened in your respective church services recently. Most attendees heard the Word of God, but they delayed their decision to act on the invitation given at the time. The big question is, what might this delay have cost them? Perhaps they said like Felix did, “I will deal with this another time”. Will there be ‘another time’ for them?

Monday, 2022-03-04
Written at: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Acts 24:24-25
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 24 After some days Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he talked about faith in Christ Jesus. 25 But as Paul went on discussing about goodness, self-control, and the coming Day of Judgment, Felix was afraid and said, “You may leave now. I will call you again when I get the chance.”

APPLICATION: When travelling to another state or country by plane or train, there is often the chance of delays, for one reason or another. If the fault is attributed to the airline, then they will often provide vouchers to the stranded passengers for food, and sometimes even for hotel, if the delay will prevent travelling the same day. Can you begin to imagine the costs paid by carriers for these delays? Last weekend the message of the Gospel was presented, and thousands of attendees at thousands of churches were given the opportunity to surrender their lives to Jesus as their Lord and Savior. No doubt your church, like mine, saw folk leave without accepting the invitation of the pastor, and the Holy Spirit that tugged on their hearts. I’m sure that there were many excuses for the decisions to delay following Christ. Why some left during the singing of the last hymn, because it was more important to be the first out of the busy church parking lot, or to be the first at the popular restaurants for lunch. Priorities of the individuals! But we are reminded through God’s Word, that He is in full control of our time here on earth. Will we have another opportunity quite like the opportunity given at last week’s services? Thankfully, I made it all the way home safely yesterday. Did everyone else from your church services have that same good fortune? Perhaps they did, or perhaps they didn’t. God’s Word has very clear advice for us when it tells us that “now is the accepted time”, the only moment promised to us. Think about this friends: at our borders all those arriving with proper documentation (passports and appropriate visas) are allowed in, while others are rejected and expatriated back to their home country. This will be no different at the entrance to Heaven’s portals, because the rules are similar to those followed by our immigration officers. For entrance into heaven, only those who have personally accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior (that’s their passport and visa) will be accepted into God’s eternal home, others will be returned to their home of choice – with Satan and his band of demons. Friends, please don’t delay, it could cost you eternal life with the God of this universe and His awesome Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus, the One who loved you enough to die on a cruel cross, so that you might receive forgiveness of your sin. But you must invite Him into your heart. Your delay could cost you big time. Please let me encourage you to not even wait for the next service time, contact a pastor or Christian leader of a local church, or contact me so that I may help you, but PLEASE, don’t delay, make a decision today, for Jesus might return today to take His bride (the church) home to glory!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, many of us just attended church over recent days, and you petitioned us to accept You as Lord of our life. Today, through this illustration with Felix delaying his decision to hear more from Paul, you are again getting our attention about the cost of delaying our decision to accept Your free gift of salvation. The delays brought on by Felix cost him. I pray that my readers, listeners, and all those that we love and pray for, will accept You at Your Word, while there is time to do so. Thank You for loving us enough to have given us multiple opportunities to do this. And while we have no control over whether there will be another opportunity, I pray that many will STOP and cry out to You as they finish meditating on this devotional – even now. I praise You for not giving up on me. Today I humbly plead with You to melt the hearts of those that meditated on this devotional with me today, as they were given another opportunity to call on You for salvation. Please bring them to their senses and embolden them to make this vital decision. Please create a sense of urgency in their hearts to accept You oh Lord. For this is my humble and earnest prayer, in the name of Jesus alone, and for His glory alone. 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!