Ginrich's Devotional Blog

January 6, 2020

Joy in Giving

2 Corinthians 8:7 7 But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.  (NIV)

Christmas time is fun for many reasons.  The best part of Christmas for me is the giving.  It is fun to pray about what to give someone, make or purchase it and watch the joy on their face as they open the gift.  However, during the rest of the year we find it seems harder for people to be in a giving mood.  There are many reasons for tight wallets.  Some are afraid they might not have enough for their own needs and wants.  That is because they don’t really believe the promise of God that He will meet all their needs.  Perhaps they’re making their desires even more important than their needs.  In the above verse we read we can have faith, we can speak well, we can have great knowledge, we can be earnest in our belief and we can also have the love of God but these things, without being accompanied by giving are not real but only self-centered desires.  Let us be sure we are giving even more than our tithe.  Yes, we keep 90 % of what we get but doing that can become legalistic.  Let us pay attention to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit and be givers whenever He presents a need to us.  Givers not only of our money but of our other possessions and of our time.  Giving fills us with joy.

December 25, 2019

Filed under: Christmas,cross,Father,God,Holy Spirit,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:03 pm

 

John 1:14 14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (NIV)

Manger Bed

When I walked into the barn  Early one cold morn,  My eyes fell on the manger bed  Looking old and worn  Then I heard You softly say,  “Twas in a place like this,  snuggled in some old dry hay  I first laid to rest.”

As my Savior grew to serve  He wandered all around.  Never did He have a place  He could call His own.  When He died upon the cross  On that dismal day  They laid Him in a borrowed tomb  To wait for that third day.

Now that You have conquered death  Make Your home in me  Fill me with your warmth and peace,  Free Your love through me.  Keep my mind full of Your thoughts  Set my spirit free  To be united with Your own  Then One we’ll ever be.

These are the words to a song I wrote some time ago. I was going into our barn to mile goats and this was the result.  So often at Christmas we concentrate on the birth of Jesus, forgetting He was born in the shadow of the cross.  We forget the pain that must have been in the Father’s heart knowing what His Son must face while He was in totally human form.  Let us keep the entire purpose in mind as we celebrate with friends and family.

May you have a blessed Christmas day and spend time thanking and praising God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

 

December 13, 2019

B.C. and A.D.

Matthew 1:23 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.  (NIV)

Isaiah 7:14 14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.   (NIV)

It is amazing how this prophecy in Isaiah was fulfilled through a young virgin.  What’s even more amazing is that the entire world calendar is built around the birth of this child, Jesus Christ, the Word of God made flesh.  The calendar is marked with the years before Christ (B.C.) and the years after the year of the Lord (A.D.)  Even those who deny the existence of Jesus agree with and use the calendar.  Notice the real translation of A.D. isn’t “after death.”  The Latin word are translated “After the Lord.”  Even though there is an attack on those who believe and accept the fact of God made flesh to demonstrate His love in a tangible way and take on our sin of separation, it doesn’t change the fact.  Let us continue to say with strength and conviction along with Peter, Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of God, the Savior of the world.  As we celebrate with our friends and families, let us remember the amazing miracle we are celebrating.  In spite of our self-love and indulgences, God loves us so very much that He became human flesh and blood to bring us into right relationship with Him.  No religion believes in God.  Only Christians, not a religion but a way of life.

December 7, 2019

Without a Loved One

Matthew 28:20 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”  (NIV)

Spending Christmas, or any other celebration occasion, without someone who is really close to you is hard.  Quite often it leads us into depression.  We can be in the midst of a crowd or even with other family members and still feel alone.  We must remember what Jesus said.  He is always with us.  He is closer than with us.  He is in us through the person of the Holy Spirit.  That is closer than even a loved one can be.  Especially at Christmas we must remember what it is we are actually celebrating.  We are celebrating the very real presence of God and His Word, His Son, Jesus Christ.  We even have it better than the shepherds who were blessed to see Him as a new born baby laying in a cow’s feed trough.  We have the Holy Spirit inside us.  Instead of dwelling on how much we miss a loved one who is no longer with us we can choose to thank, praise and rejoice that the One Who loves us most, and hopefully Who we love most, is so very with us – dwelling in us.  This is the real meaning of Christmas.  So, as we see others with their loved ones so very close and enjoying celebrating together, let us thank God for Christmas’s past with our loved one and really celebrate with Him in a deeper and more knowing way.

October 8, 2019

Counterfeit Fruit

Filed under: believe,Bible,Christmas,fruit,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:02 pm

Galatians 5:22-23 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  (NIV)

How do we know when the fruit of the Spirit is counterfeit?  I know quit a few people who are not believers in Jesus who exhibit more of the fruit of the Holy Spirit than many believers.  The difference is the non-believers only exhibit the fruit when they want to appear nice or it benefits them in some way.  They are not consistent in the fruits.  The fruit of the Spirit, when really a fruit and not a choice of behavior, the fruit comes from the Holy Spirit within the believer and grows within the believer over time, becoming more and more prevalent regardless of emotions or environmental circumstances.  The fruit of the Holy Spirit doesn’t turn on and of depending on who is present, how they act or any other circumstance.  There are a lot of “nice” people around, people we enjoy being with, but nice doesn’t substitute for believing and being filled with the Holy Spirit.  There are also, sorry to say, a lot of professing believers around who don’t exhibit some of the fruits in various circumstances.  Let’s be sure we allow the fruit of the Holy Spirit to grow in us, properly nourishing the fruit through Bible study, meditation and prayer.

December 27, 2018

Favorite Service

Filed under: Christmas,Easter,God,Holy Spirit,Jesus,sacrifice,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 8:10 pm

Luke 1:69 69 He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David (NIV)

This is the first of the 7 prophecies spoken around the time of the birth of Jesus.  A friend visited me and said her favorite service of the entire year was the Christmas candlelight service.  That is a nice service but my favorite service of the year is the Easter Sunrise service.  Without the resurrection of Jesus from His sacrificial death for our sins there was no need or reason for His birth in human form.  All the prophecies surround His birth lead to the sacrificial death of Jesus for the payment of our sins culminating in His resurrection showing us the eternal life that is ours through His sacrifice.  I like to celebrate His resurrection within me each and every day.  It is only because He has filled me with His Holy Spirit that I am who I am today – a child of God.  This indeed is something to be celebrated each and every day.  The Christmas celebrations are fun and meaningful but I pray we all celebrate our resurrection through Jesus each and every day.

December 7, 2018

Too Much

Filed under: Christmas,gifts,God,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 8:58 pm

James 1:13-14 13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.  (NIV)

During this season we are hit hard with temptation through advertising claiming various things are necessary for our comfort and/or enjoyment.  Many buy into the temptation and find themselves in debt long after the things they bought have become inadequate or broken.  Many blame God for their financial situation.  God has promised to provide all we need.  Our problem is we can’t distinguish between needs and wants and so many of our wants have been created by others telling us we should want.  God places each of us at various income levels for our various, specific ministry.  Our problem come from not asking for His wisdom in our financial spending.  We tend to forget all we have is really His and we are to be good stewards of what He puts in our hands.  We tend to forget to teach our children this most valuable lesson by overindulging them with too many things under the tree on Christmas morning.  Let’s teach them along with ourselves that we are to submit to God all we have and seek His wisdom on the use of all He puts into our hands.

December 25, 2017

Christmas Day

John 3:16-17 16 “For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. (NIV)

This is the reason for Christmas.  This is why God sent His only begotten Son into the world.  Without the crucifixion and resurrection there was no reason for Christmas.  Jesus could have walked this earth to just show us the love and power of God, but with His dying for our sin and coming back to life then ascending to heaven so He could send His Holy Spirit to dwell within us, there would be no hope for us.  It is impossible to love and follow God without the poser of the Holy Spirit within us.  Today, Christmas day, we pause from our worldly schedules to celebrate the coming of Jesus.  We also look forward to His return.  As we open our gifts and celebrate with our loved ones, let us remember to give the gift of our hearts to God.  Let us choose to love, serve and follow Him through the power of His Holy Spirit dwelling in each and every person who had chosen to follow Jesus.  Let us be sure we have opened His gift of His Holy Spirit and share His gift with others.

December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve

Luke 2:12 12 This will be the sign for you: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in cloth and lying in a feeding trough.” (NIV)

 We’ve looked at only a few of the more than 300 prophecies concerning Jesus.  I hope you will continue the study and see how the prophecies and their fulfillment affect our lives today.  Tonight is the Eve of Christmas.  Many will go to candlelight services.  Over the centuries we have come to romanticize Christmas.  We’ve added many things to the Christmas Story.  We don’t know if Mary and Joseph had a donkey for their 90-mile trip to Bethlehem.  We don’t know how many Magi came to see the Crist Child sometime during the first 2 years of His birth.  We don’t think about how smelly and dirty the “stable” was where He was born. We don’t think of the young teen-ager, Mary, who had never had a baby gave birth without a mid-wife.  There are so many things we don’t consider.  As we enjoy the soft candlelight of our services let us remember how great a cost it was to give us the most wonderful gift ever given or will ever be given.  Let us praise and thank God for Who He is and what He has done for us.

December 23, 2017

Pray for Enemies

Psalms 109:4 4 In return for my love they accuse me, but I continue to pray. (NIV)

Luke 23:34 34 Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, because they do not know what they are doing.” ] And they divided His clothes and cast lots.

Matthew 5:44 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, (NIV)

Even as He was extremely in the depths of suffering and rejection, Jesus prayed for those responsible for His pain.  He told us we are to do the same.  Our question is, when we do pray for our enemies (those who have harmed us or wished us harm), what is it we pray?  Do we pray, “God, fix them.”?  We are to pray for God’s forgiveness for them and for His love to enter them.  We are to pray for God’s best for them.  That is what is meant by the phrase, “God bless you.”  In our sin state we want payback.  God wants love and forgiveness for all.  Let’s choose to want what God wants.

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