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By Ed Algreen
June 15, 2018

 
 

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Corinthians 7:10-11 (TPT)

TEXT:  10 God designed us to feel remorse over sin in order to produce repentance that leads to victory. This leaves us with no regrets. But the sorrow of the world works death. 11 Can’t you see the good fruit that has come, as God intended, because of your remorse over sin? Now you are eager to do what is right! Look at the indignation you experienced over what happened and how alarmed you became. What holy longing it awakened, what passion for God, and how ready you were to bring justice to the offender. Your response has proved that you are free of blame in this matter.

OBSERVATION:   Paul had dealt with a group to whom he had written a letter, that he was sure could easily have dampened their spirits and perhaps even make them mad. When he arrived on site, he was thankful that the letter was well received and that it had the desired impact on the Corinthians. Because we also need correcting from time to time, let us take note of how this was achieved.

APPLICATION:   Isn’t it interesting how someone can say something to us at certain times and we will laugh along with them and take their advice in stride, while other times the slightest little thing will make us so upset and ready to fight? I believe that Paul was expecting the worse as a result of his letter, but instead he found the best possible results. That’s no different with us today, for if we are challenged about our sin, or discord, the first thing that most of us would do is to become very defensive. We might also become upset at the Brother or Sister trying to help correct us, and we would probably stay out of their way for a while. On the other hand, if we are filled with the Holy Spirit and therefore looking for ways to please God more, and better, then perhaps we would welcome correction, because we would be listening more attentively to the Holy Spirit who lives inside of us as our guide to pleasing Christ everyday. I believe this is the same way it works with Jesus speaking wisdom to us, for when our hearts are in tuned with Jesus Christ, we are in tuned with His Word and we easily apply it to our lives and give God thanks for it. However, when we are out of sync with our Master, and we have not been transparent with Him about our sin, we are easily misdirected by Satan, who forces us into many other directions when we know deep inside that we should be in the Word, at a prayer meeting, or some other place that we had scheduled, at least in our minds, to facilitate our personal time with the Lord. Friends, daily distractions is our biggest enemy to spending time with the Lord. Here’s a help tip for you: Whenever distracted by something that steals your time away from being with the Lord, and you go before God with your excuses and especially about not having time for everything, just tell Him “Sorry God but that was not a priority for me today”. Think carefully about the circumstances and you will quickly agree that you just gave a more accurate explanation to God, but now try thanking Him for all that He has sacrificed, and done just for you. Try asking Him for all the things that you feel you should have, to better align with your neighbors. Very difficult, isn’t it? Make God your priority friends! Above all else that He could have been doing in His ministry, yet He stopped everything and made the ultimate sacrifice just for us. How could we but praise Him? How could we but serve Him? How could we but worship Him? How could we but honor Him – my Savior and my Lord?

PRAYER:   Lord Jesus, I worship and adore You today, because of who You are, because of Your love for my readers and I and because of all that You gave up just to provide the means of us getting to the Father and all of the joys of Heaven. We have such a challenge keeping our priorities in order, like You demonstrated on the cross at Calvary. Please, please, continue to impress upon us what’s important in life and help us to stay focused on the only thing that matters – our eternal destination in heaven with You and the Father.

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By Ed Algreen
June 13, 2018

 
 

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Corinthians 6:6-7 (ERV)

TEXT:  We show that we are God’s servants by our pure lives, by our understanding, by our patience, and by our kindness. We show it by the Holy Spirit, by genuine love, by speaking the truth, and by depending on God’s power. This right way of living has prepared us to defend ourselves against every kind of attack.

OBSERVATION:   Paul declared at the very beginning of this chapter that THE most important thing for his people, is their salvation, and that the day of salvation is NOW. For we are not promised the next day, hour or minute. Therefore he wanted his hearers (including us) to know that we need not wait for any event in life for us to start speaking, acting and loving like our Master, the Lord Jesus Christ. This will speak volumes to us, read on…..

APPLICATION:   Ever heard a spouse warn you to go easy on their partner, because they are trying to get over what someone said to them, or embarrassed over what they said to someone, or they got told off by a friend and they are trying to calm their nerves before they would otherwise explode? Does this sound very much like you, friend, because you have been there and done that? So what impression of Christ did the ‘world’ around that believer just receive? Was it a convincing act that helped them finalize their decision to follow Christ? Was it an outpouring of love, like Christ showed even at His most difficult time – hanging on the cross? Did it remind you of anything that you had seen even in the ‘world’? Are you convinced that you need to be more like that friend because he says that he is just like Jesus? Friends, Paul knew that the ‘world’ was watching him very closely, and just waiting for him to mess up so they could either poke fun at him or use it against his witness. I believe that Christians today, who live among the ‘world’, also knows that things have not changed. So the big question is: What have we (Christians) done to prepare ourselves to face the world’s: temptations, deceitful ‘friends’, the opposition’, etc? I believe that we should be as much like Jesus Christ in our workplace, in our social clubs, in the restaurants, at the football game, and anywhere else that we go each day, as we are in church or in the safety and security of our homes. If the character of Christ is in us, it will show through us in our actions and in our words. If we struggle with that, then the formula for success rests on our knees. For only Jesus can help us face the uncertainties of the day through a fresh filling of His Holy Spirit each morning that we ask for it. Are you ready for the day – not personally, but confident that you and Jesus could face anything that Satan may send your way.

PRAYER:   Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on each of us today. May we be so filled with Your power, Your grace, and Your love, that we could face any giant that may pose a threat to our representation of our Savior today. Please prepare us, and be our Guide through every circumstance today. For I ask this in the powerful name of Jesus, my Lord, my Savior and my everlasting King! AMEN!

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By Ed Algreen
June 12, 2018

 
 

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Isaiah 1:18-20 (ERV)

TEXT: 18 “I, the Lord, am the one speaking to you. Come, let’s discuss this. Even if your sins are as dark as red dye, that stain can be removed and you will be as pure as wool that is as white as snow. 19 “If you listen to what I say, you will get the good things from this land. 20 But if you refuse to listen and rebel against me, your enemies will destroy you.” The Lord himself said this.

OBSERVATION:   Although these verses were shared by our Old Testament prophet Isaiah, and were no doubt very applicable to what he was facing at the time with his own people, I can understand why God had these words included in His Holy Book For we have folk that refuse to listen to the voice of God today. Let’s see how this might still applicable to us today.

APPLICATION:   Pastor, you just don’t understand. This ‘Holy’ and ‘Righteous’ and ‘Perfect’ Father that you refer to won’t have anything to do with me. For I am a filthy sinner in all that I’ve done in my past, and if you only had a clue as to what my job currently is, and the horrible clientele that I serve“. The Word of God responds: “My child, I sent my very own Son as a sacrifice for your sins. No matter how dark, or crimson red those sins might be, the sacrifice I offered for you will actually cleanse you as if you were super clean, just as freshly fallen snow appears.” “But pastor, all my friends know about my deeds and my past. A change on the inside may not be evident to them” “My dear one, all along you have lived to please others, and you don’t appear happy with what you achieved. As you surrender your heart to my Son, He will guide you into all truth for everyday living, so that you may please Him. That turn of events will allow you to one day be in Heaven with My Son and Me. That benefit is ‘out of this world’! So you have a choice my child: continue living to please the world and its leader so that you may spend eternity in torment by Satan, or accept My offer of forgiveness, love, and eternity in Heaven.” To all my readers: What is your choice in this matter? Do you know my Savior? Are you pleasing Him, or are you still pleasing the world and your friends? Please carefully decide where you will spend eternity. It’s your choice, and only you can make that choice, with God’s help. Your life will be evidence of which choice you made. May I recommend that you make the decision to follow Jesus? Look full into His wonderful face, and the things of this world will grow strangely dim! It’s all a matter of life (eternity in heaven) or death (total darkness and everlasting abuse with Satan in the pit of Hell). It’s your choice my friend.

PRAYER:   Lord, I so appreciate all that You did for me on Calvary. I pray that as my readers contemplate on this today, they will make the obvious choice to accept Your precious Gift and Your ultimate destination for all who are Yours. To do nothing is the same as them telling You, “no thank you, I rather do this ‘life’ thing on my own and accept my consequences at the end”. Faithful Father, I pray that You will soften the hearts of all that might begin to read this devotional today and draw them unto Yourself. My whole purpose in writing this blog is to point family and friends towards my Savior. Bless this devotional today dear Lord, and allow it to accomplish Your work. AMEN!

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By Ed Algreen
June 08, 2018

 
 

Post Date:

Friday, 2018-06-08
SCRIPTURE

From:

Daniel 9:20-23 (TLB)

Text:

20 Even while I was praying and confessing my sin and the sins of my people, desperately pleading with the Lord my God for Jerusalem, his holy mountain, 21 Gabriel, whom I had seen in the earlier vision, flew swiftly to me at the time of the evening sacrifice 22 and said to me, “Daniel, I am here to help you understand God’s plans. 23 The moment you began praying a command was given. I am here to tell you what it was, for God loves you very much. Listen and try to understand the meaning of the vision that you saw!

 

OBSERVATION:

Unlike many of us that may spend less than 3 minutes in prayer, this whole chapter in Daniel highlights most of the content of Daniel’s conversation/prayer to God, for he was burdened for his people and his land and he knew that the only one who could do anything about the stubbornness of hearts, would be the Eternal God. Daniel took God seriously at His Word, that ‘If my people, who are called by my name, would humble themselves and pray, then God……’.  True to His Word, Daniel found out that the minute he humbled himself, opened his mouth in prayer, then God began acting in response!

 

APPLICATION:

A question often asked in Christian circles is: ‘Does God really listen to my prayers, and is it possible that He would ever act on ‘my prayers’? Fortunately we don’t control God, or the prayers that He chooses to answer. But as for our prayers, I would suggest a few tips that I believe Scripture teaches:

 

  • Don’t go to God as a stranger out of desperation. Go before Him reverently, acknowledging that He is God (in charge) and that you are His humble servant, saved only by His grace, in need of Him, once again today/this week/etc;
  • When no personal relationship exists, it is very challenging to have a sincere, meaningful conversation with someone – especially God. Relationships flourish when there is ongoing conversation between both parties; when there’s giving sacrificially to the other party, and receiving humbly from that party. God is no different, honor His Word by reading it daily and allowing God to speak with you and direct your paths; Pray to God about everything and be willing to accept His response, that may not always agree with our personal desire;
  • Be willing to act on what God directs you to do – obedience;
  • Learn to go before God looking at His face, and not for His outstretched hand. Yes, I believe He wants to give you the desires of your heart, but looking into His face will encourage you to worship Him and recognize Him for who He is. Then if you are in need of something, you will recognize that you are placing your most private thoughts and most urgent needs before a very worthy God.

God does answer prayer, friends. Do your part to ensure that you are asking of a very personal God with whom you have a very deep relationship with. Daniel did this and God acted immediately. Our God’s not dead, He’ll do the same for you!

PRAYER:
Lord, thank You for answered prayer! Thank You Lord for accepting me as Your precious child, and for Your continued care and answers to my prayers. On behalf of all who may read this devotional and myself, please continue to work on us with building a closer and stronger relationship with You. I believe that You care about every little concern of ours, so I pray that we will present our cares of all sizes at Your feet and seek Your will and Your blessing. Thank You for being there in so many ways for Daniel and thank You for the promise that You will be with us always. Praise to our wonderful Lord, AMEN!
Comments: 1



By Ed Algreen
June 07, 2018

 
 

Post Date:

Thursday, 2018-06-07
SCRIPTURE

From:

Numbers 20:12 (ERV)

Text:

12 But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “You did not trust me enough to honor me and show the people that I am holy. You did not show the Israelites that the power to make the water came from me. So you will not lead the people into the land that I have given them.”
OBSERVATION:
The Israelites complained about there not being any water to drink, and that soon they and their animals would die of thirst. Moses and Aaron petitioned before God for relief to this problem, and they were given specific directions on how God would miraculously produce water from a huge rock. However, pride set in and Moses decided to add some theatrics to the miracle by smiting the stone with his rod. God still allowed water to spring from the stone, but He dealt severely with Moses and Aaron.
APPLICATION:
I wonder how guilty we are of praying for someone, seeing God answer our prayer, then allowing the individual to praise us beyond anything we deserve. As we read God’s Word, and encounter Him daily, we must always remember that He created us to worship Him and to lift Him up. God sent His own Son so that we may again recognize His love for us and have even more reason to praise Him endlessly. When friends ask why we are so happy – it’s because the King of this universe loves us and cares for us, not because we lost weight, or our wife had a baby, or you just got married, although each of those things would place you on cloud 9 and smiling throughout the day, however when you know Jesus as Lord, and you’ve been praying for each of these things, your happiness is not necessarily in the results, but in the Savior who heard your cry and answered your prayer. Moses could have used yet another opportunity to give God praise in the presence of his people, but instead he made himself and his rod to be his hero. We are given opportunities to share the love of Christ when God answers our prayers, let’s aim at giving Him the glory friends, for without Him we are totally helpless. Remember, He is God, and we are merely His humble servants doing what He says, and what He gives us power to do. To God be the glory for all that He does through even us!
PRAYER:
Thank You heavenly Father for working through even us to carry Your message to the lost and discouraged. Thank You for also using us when You see the need for physical hands or bodies to be present for some to believe. Have Your perfect will in our lives Lord Jesus and bless as only You can, so that all glory goes to You. May we learn to always stand behind the cross, so that the world will see Jesus. AMEN!
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