Ginrich's Devotional Blog

September 30, 2012

Shouts of Joy

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Zephaniah 3:17  The Lord your God is in your midst; he is a warrior who can deliver.  He takes great delight in you;  he renews you by his love; he shouts for joy over you.” 

Read the verse again.  It tells us about how God feels about us.  First it says God is in our midst.  That means there is no place we can be or anything we can face that He is not in the center for us.  It says He is a warrior who can deliver.  He does and always will deliver all of His promises including protection from evil.  He takes great delight in us.  That overwhelms me.  It’s hard to believe anyone can take great delight in me, especially God Who knows me even better than I know myself.  He renews me by His love.  I am renewed every time I allow God’s love within me.  It ends saying He shouts for joy over us.  Have you ever experience anyone shouting for joy over you?  If you have, it doesn’t even start to compare with the joy God has for us.  Our question is are we willing to receive this kind of attention from God?  We have it whether we receive it or not.  Our blocking is refusing to have Jesus in us and His Holy Spirit.  It is the power of the Holy Spirit that awakens our sensitivity to God and His love. Stop.  Be quiet.  Listen.  Feel.  God is shouting for joy over each one of us.

September 29, 2012

Unworthy

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Job 40:4  “Indeed, I am completely unworthy – how could I reply to you?
I put my hand over my mouth to silence myself. 

How often have we told God we are unworthy of His love, forgiveness and/or gifts?  How would you feel if your children or another family member you love kept telling you they are unworthy of your love?  Love cannot be earned or deserved.  Love is freely given.  We can’t say, “if you do or don’t do such and such I won’t love you anymore.”  That isn’t love.  God does not like to hear us wallow in the unworthiness pit.  What it says is, “You don’t really know me, God.  If You really knew me You would know how unworthy I am.  God does know us better than we know ourselves.  He is responsible for us being made like we are.  He loves us because He created us.  It has nothing to do with what we do, how respond to Him or anything else.  He may not be pleased with some of our words, thoughts or actions or inactions but that doesn’t change His love for us.  Our question is do we receive His love or resist it in our feeling of unworthiness?  Instead of telling God what He already knows about our unworthiness let us start to thank Him for His love, forgiveness and gifts throughout each and every day.  

September 28, 2012

Choosing Gifts

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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1 Peter 4:10  Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve one another as good stewards of the varied grace of God.

Have you ever been gift you really did not want?  Did you refuse it from the giver or just politely thank them and regift it or put it up, no longer seen by you?  There are various ways we receive gifts.  We can just say no, thanks and hurt the giver because refusing their gift is refusing the effort of their love reaching out to us.  We can regift it or pack it away.  We are still refusing the effort of love of the giver but maybe not in their face but our own heart.  We can set the gift somewhere to look at from time to time but not use.  We are still not receiving the love of the giver but probably thinking what were they thinking when they gave me that?  We can find a use for the gift allowing it to remind us of the love of the giver.  I have many gifts around the house not of my choosing but of the choosing of others who were wanting to share some of their love with me in a way they knew how.  I use them as I can, remembering who gave them to me and praying for the to fully feel the love of God.  God gives us gifts of His Holy Spirit.  It is not up to us to choose the gifts but to open them, learn to use them and thank Him for His wisdom and love in giving us the gifts He chooses.  We are each given gifts through His Holy Spirit when we receive Jesus into our hearts and lives.  Our question is are we learning to use these gifts or just keeping them on a shelf for some occasion?  Are we looking at the gifts He chooses to give otters and thinking those are the gifts we should have?  Let us learn to be thankful for what God chooses to give us, learn to use and flow in them and share them with others.  Just like the parable of the talents, the more we use our gifts the more gifts God will give us to use.

September 27, 2012

Harvesters

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 18:14 In the same way, your Father in heaven is not willing that one of these little ones be lost.

Every so often I’m overwhelmed with sadness and grief thinking how God hurts that there are so many on this earth who are lost to Him.  I really cannot imagine His pain as I don’t love as complete as He does.  What this does do is motivate me all the more to share God’s plan of salvation through His Son Jesus with others I meet.  It hurts when they refuse to listen; not because they refuse to listen to me but because they refuse to come to God in the only way He has provided – through the presious shedding of the blood of His Son, Jesus.  I watch their lives and wonder how the keep their sanity without God’s Holy Spirit to guide and comfort them.  God provides us with instructions for sharing His plan with others.  We are fist to demonstrate His love and abundant life in our lives through our actions, words and expressions.  Then we are to pray for their salvation.  Then we are to openly share with them the Word of God.  We are to do this in the spirit of God’s love.  When we come over as thinking we are better than others we damage our witness and close the ears of others.  Our question is do we care?  If we really love God we will care and we will be obedient in learning to be good witnesses and good intercessors.  Let us pray for more harvesters because the fields are ripe.

September 26, 2012

Can’t Have One Without the Other

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Galatians 2:16 yet we know a that no one is justified by the works of the law but by the faithfulness of Jesus Christ.  And we have come to believe in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by the faithfulness of Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.

It is only the gift and shedding of the blood of Jesus Christ that justifies us with the forgiveness of our sins before God.  There is nothing in and of ourselves we can do for that accept to accept the gift of Jesus.  There are not enough laws to obey or “good” works to do. But because of our gift of forgiveness and our faith in God’s promise we choose to obey His laws and choose to do “good” deeds.  We have not really welcomed God’s gift of the shed blood of His Son Jesus is we do not desire to obey His laws and do “good” deeds.  We can obey laws and do deeds without the gift of God in us but we cannot have the gift of God’s forgiveness in us without obey the laws or doing the deeds.  Just like the song, “Love and Marriage” (go together like a horse and carriage) God’s forgiveness and obey laws and doing deeds go together.  You can have a horse without a carriage but the carriage can’t go anywhere without the horse.  You can have law-abiding and do-gooding people without the forgiveness of God but you can’t have the forgiveness of God without being filled with the desire of obedience to the laws and the desire to reach out to others.  This is because as we are filled with God’s forgiveness through the shed blood of Jesus, we receive His Holy Spirit to empower and to move us into action to learn to walk this earth as Jesus walked.  Our question is are we blocking the Holy Spirit through our ignorance of the laws of God or through our laziness of actions?

September 25, 2012

Tradition

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Acts 13:39   and by this one everyone who believes is justified from everything from which the law of Moses could not justify you. 

I do hope you will go to your Bibles and read this verse in context.  I hope that on all these devotions.  Here the contention is, “We have always done it that way.”  We still hear this cry in our churches today.  Tradition is good as long as it is practiced in the right way.  We must always acknowledge that our rites and things of tradition are not what gives us our forgiveness of sins and our fellowship with God.  These gifts are only through the precious blood of Jesus.  Nothing else, regardless of how long believed or practiced, regardless of how good it may seem can save us from our sins or restore our relationship of child to Father with God.  There is nothing wrong with following traditions if they help us in our worship, praise, meditations, Bible study or service to others as long as they don’t serve as a substitute for personal worship and relationship to God through Jesus.  Traditions should not be forced on any believer.  We are all made new every day through the power of God’s Holy Spirit.  We may be moved to keep certain traditions and not keep others.  It is a personal choice based on the leading of the Holy Spirit.  When we see someone worshiping or praising in a different way than we do with our tradition let us rejoice that they are worshiping or praising.  We might even want to try a new thing from time to time.  Traditions can become unthinking habits.  What counts is our spirits, hearts and minds must all be in accord with the worship and praise of our God.

September 24, 2012

Red Lights

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,prayer — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Acts 16:7 When they came to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to do this, 

We have a lot of traffic lights on our roads.  They turn red, green, yellow, have various arrows and sometimes just blink on and off.  These lights are intended to direct us the right way at the right time.  Some people don’t pay attention to these lights and they cause accidents.  I’m not sure why they’re called accidents because the people ignored the lights on purpose or were just not paying attention.  I consider that a choice, though a bad one.  God, in His wonderful wisdom, gives us traffic lights on our walk with Him on this earth.  Sometimes we’re so distracted we fail to look or listen for them.  Sometimes we just want to go a particular direction at a particular time of our own choosing.  We eventually find there was a good reason for the color light or arrow God was quietly giving us.  We end up with an “accident” or at least a detour in our walk.  Our question is dow we want to just push through in our own way and time or do we want to walk more consistently and smoothly with our God?  The choice is ours.  His lights are set up in His written Word, in circumstances, through the advice of other believers and in our pray and meditation time.  Let us quiet the outside noise and pressure and walk in His chosen path for us.

September 23, 2012

Last Wills

Galatians 3:29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abrahams descendants, heirs according to the promise.

Many of us have made wills. These wills are to let our heirs know who gets what of our precious possessions.  Sometimes we are very specific in our instructions.  We have a possession that is worth more than all others we have accumulated and named in our wills. This possession is our relationship with God, the Creator through His Son, Jesus.  It is only through Jesus that we have the promise of being a joint heir with Him in sharing all that is in eternity in the Presence of the Father, God.  I wonder how many wills mention this possession and encourage our heirs on how to welcome this possession into their lives. The greatest gift we can leave our heirs is the gift of the wisdom we have gained from our relationship with God. To leave this out of our wills, our last chance to impart the knowledge of God to those we love, is a tragedy. I have written love letters to each out our children, in-law children and grandchildren. Every so many years I re-write them as situations, ages and maturity changes. I share the good and bad I’ve learned in my walk with God and encourage them in theirs. I pass my most valuable possession to them. I cannot give it to them. It only come from God through Jesus. I can give the directions to lead them to the greatest treasure they can be heir to that will take them through all eternity. I can pass it on.

September 22, 2012

GPS

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Isaiah 30:21 You a will hear a word spoken behind you, saying,
“This is the correct way, walk in it,” whether you are heading to the right or the left.

My husband was in a hospital in a city we were not familiar with.  The first several days I found I entered a different parking lot and a different entrance every time.  When I stepped inside an unfamiliar door I was wishing the hospital would furnish GPS’s to locate the way to the room.  Often it is like this with our walk in life.  We come to places where we have multiple choices on which way to go.  God has given us personal GPS’s.   It is His Holy Spirit.  He says He will tell us where to go and how to walk throughout our walk on this earth.  The problem is our listening.  Our question is are we willing to quiet the other voices in us to be able to hear Him say, “This is the correct way, walk in it.”  I don’t understand how people endure the stress of this life without having the Holy Spirit in them to guide them.  Just as it took me a few days to learn my way around this strange hospital, it take a while for us to learn to recognize the calm voice of God’s Holy Spirit speaking within us.  We learn through Bible study, prayer and meditation.  He promises we will know His voice.  We only need to learn how to listen.

September 21, 2012

It’s Not the Package Wrapping

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 9:17 And no one pours new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the skins burst and the wine is spilled out and the skins are destroyed. Instead they put new wine into new wineskins and both are preserved.”

I was talking with a friend about aging.  We talked about how the ecconimaclly rich were able to fix their outward looks to stay looking young.  Unfortunately how the outside looks doesn’t always reflect what is on the inside.  Without the love of God in us through Jesus and His Holy Spirit what is on our inside is not very pretty or even desirous.  We need to take more time paying attention to what is in us than what our outside packaging looks like.  Even if we are not endowed with what our culture thinks is good-looking, what is on the inside will reflect on the outside.  It will not work the other way around – outside to inside – no matter how much time and/or money is spent.  Our question is where are we putting the most of our attention, our inside or our outside packaging?  

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