Ginrich's Devotional Blog

January 17, 2020

Forgiveness Means

Filed under: forgive,God,Jesus,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:58 pm

John 13:5 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.  (NIV)

We’ve read a lot about forgiveness.  We have experienced the forgiveness of God most every day of our lives.  We are told we are to forgive others in the same way God forgives us.  We like to think there are things we shouldn’t forgive.  We confuse forgiving the person with forgiving the action.  We often look at the example of Jesus forgiving Peter for denying Him 3 times.  We must also look at their last supper together in the upper room.  Notice Jesus washed the feet of all the disciples.  He knew Peter would deny Him 3 times in a few hours.  He knew Judas was going to betray His whereabouts to the religious leaders for 30 pieces of silver.  He knew all of them would hide away in fear.  Yet, He washed all of their feet.  Yes, including Peter and Judas.  We claim we want to follow the example of Jesus.  We like to give to others.  We like to visit the sick and the imprisoned.  We like sharing the good news.  But, forgiving someone who has hurt us or lied about us or has killed someone we know and love.   How can we possibly forgive them?  Jesus does.  Forgiving doesn’t mean condoning the actions.  Nor does it mean someone doesn’t have to bear the consequences of the actions.  Forgiveness means  a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness.  We don’t deserve God’s forgiveness yet, because He loves us, He continually forgives us.  The disciples didn’t deserve Jesus’ forgiveness, yet He forgave them.    God even loves those who have hurt us.  Since God loves and forgives, who are we not to do the same?  Forgiveness is a conscious choice.  Let us learn to choose to forgive.  As we forgive healing of the hurt will slowly take the place of resentment and bitterness that only hurts us, not the ones who caused the hurt.  As we pray in the prayer Jesus taught us, “Forgive our sins as we forgive the sins of others.

December 20, 2019

In Line

Filed under: anger,believe,forgive,God,heart,humble,prayer,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:52 pm

Mark 11:24 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.  (NIV)

So why don’t we see more of what we ask for in prayer more often? Our first problem is do we really want what it is we are asking?  When we pray for someone we don’t really know for healing, do we really want their healing?  Do we really care?  Next, do we really believe that God wants us to have what we are asking?  And the biggest blockage, is there any unforgiveness in our heart?  If we are angry or bitter or unforgiving God won’t hear us.  The parable of the widow begging the judge over and over until he finally gave her what she asked.  It’s not that God wants us to beg over and over but He does want us to know if we really want and need what it is we ask.  Let’s not be flippant in our prayers.  When we ask for something let us first be sure it is in line with the character of God.  When what we ask is in line with God’s character we can believe with our whole hearts and minds that we will receive it.

December 4, 2019

A Special Gift

Filed under: anger,Bible,commands,depression,forgive,gifts,God,God's Word,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:59 pm

Matthew 18:35 35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”  (NIV)

As we enter the season of gift giving, let’s consider one of the greatest gifts we can ever give another person.  This is the gift of forgiveness.  In reality, according to the word of God, the Holy Bible, we don’t have a choice.  Forgiveness is a command.  Our forgiveness from God the Father through Jesus, His Son, hinges on our forgiveness of others.  Not only is forgiveness a beautiful and healing gift for others, it is of the greatest benefit for ourselves.  Unforgiveness harbors bitterness, depression and even anger.  It affects our physical, emotional and spiritual parts of our being.  It robs both the one needing forgiveness and the one needing to forgive inner peace.  May I encourage you to be sure there is no one in your life that you need to forgive.  God didn’t say there are certain things you aren’t to forgive.  Forgiveness isn’t rated by degrees or intensity.  He just said, forgive in the same way He forgives us.  Let us choose to do the same.

November 17, 2019

Bringing Glory to the Father

Filed under: Father,forgive,glory,Jesus,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 1:31 pm

Luke 23:34 34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (NIV)

Most of my life, when I read these words of Jesus, I was thinking He was only asking God to forgive the ones that placed Him on the cross.  Now I understand I also placed Him on the cross for it was also for my sin He died.  Jesus is asking the Father to forgive me as well as the ones who were physically at the foot of His cross, jeering Him.  What a gift of love.  He was in deep pain and about to take His last breath, yet His thoughts were on us.  We, on the other hand, when facing trials no where near as severe as the trial Jesus was experiencing, think mostly about ourselves.  How was Jesus able to think of us as He was dying?  He was looking to His Father.  All Jesus said and did was to glorify the Father.  Jesus knew His purpose was to bring glory to the Father.  That is also our purpose.  Let us choose to desire to bring glory to our Father in all we say and do.

November 16, 2019

Undeserved Grace

Filed under: Bible,Christ,forgive,God,grace,Jesus,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:52 pm

Romans 3:24 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.  (NIV)

If you have a Bible that has the words of Jesus in red letters, you will not find the word grace.  Jesus didn’t talk about grace.  He demonstrated grace.   There is nothing we can do that makes us worthy of forgiveness for our separation from God.  We are underserving of His forgiveness.  It is only through His grace.  Grace is when someone gives or does something for someone else who is not deserving of it. Donald Barnhouse, a pastor and Bible scholar said, “Love that goes upward is worship; love that goes outward is affection; love that stoops is grace.”   When we show grace, we are doing a favor or kindness to someone who isn’t deserving of it.  One example of Jesus reaching out in grace was when He washed the feet of His disciples.  After He finished, He said for us to go and do likewise.  He didn’t mean for us to actually wash feet.  He meant for us to stoop to help someone else.  We give grace with a humble heart.  Quite often some of us say, “But for the grace of go God I.”  It is wonderful being on the receiving end of grace.  It fairly easy to show grace to those we know and love.  It is difficult to show grace to someone who has hurt us.  It is that act of grace that enables us to forgive.  We are to reach out showing grace through the love of God to all we encounter.

October 15, 2019

Applying the Words of Jesus

Filed under: forgive,Holy Spirit,Jesus,love,Uncategorized,Word — by ginrich @ 7:30 pm

Matthew 7:24 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  (NIV)

Matthew 7:26 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. (NIV)

We either apply the words of Jesus, putting them into daily practice in our lives or we don’t.  We don’t get te option of applying only the words of Jesus that we like or that are easy or that seem to benefit us the most.  It is an all or nothing.  We either apply them or we don’t.  Before we get too smug we must really think honestly.  One thing Jesus said we are to do is to forgive others in the same way God forgives us.  Have we really done this?  Is there anyone we like to recall the wrong they’ve done to us?  That isn’t forgiveness.  We are told to love our enemies and pray for them.  Don’t we usually try to avoid them?  How often do we pray for them?  I believe you get the point.  Applying the words of Jesus to our daily life isn’t possible in and of our own strength.  We must depend on the Holy Spirit to enable us to apply the words of Jesus.  It is only through His power and His love pouring in and through us that this is possible.  Let us learn to begin each day asking Him to enable us to apply the words of Jesus throughout our day, spreading His love to all who cross our path.

September 25, 2019

Not Canabilism

Filed under: Bible,body,confess,forgive,God,God's Word,Jesus,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:38 pm

John 6:53 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.  (NIV)

That does sound cannibalistic.  How are we to eat the flesh and drink the blood of Jesus?  We eat by delving deeply into the written word of God, the Holy Bible.  We must more than read it to eat it.  We must study it, meditate on it and put it securely into our minds for total recall.  We drink His blood through continually confessing our sins, asking forgiveness, accepting forgiveness and repenting – turning our back on each sinful habit.  Drinking in His forgiveness after we have confessed is drinking His blood which was shed for the forgiveness of our sin of separation from God.  The eating and drinking is a daily thing not intended to be saved for what we call the Lord’s supper or communion.  Those elements are a symbol of what we are to do daily in eating and drinking of Jesus.  No matter how much we eat His body, the written word of God we can never get too full.  Let us make the eating and drinking of Jesus a daily practice.

August 29, 2019

Nightly Check-up

Filed under: confess,forgive,fruit,Holy Spirit,joy,love,peace,repent,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:24 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)

We need to give ourselves a nightly check before ending the day.  We check each fruit of the Spirit to see how it grew in us during the day or how we squelched a particular fruit that day.  Did we show the fruit of forbearance (patience) In our driving or with the customer that carried on a tirade blaming us for a company police or their own indiscretion?  What about joy?  Did we go around with a joyful expression and attitude?  Self-control can be a big one.  Did we practice self-control at the “all you can eat” buffet we went to for lunch or dinner?  Each fruit is a barometer of how we are walking in the Spirit of God.  If you’re normal you will find at least one, if not more fruits lacking during the day.  That’s okay.  Confess the lack, choose to turn a different direction, ask forgiveness and forgive yourself.  Then ask the Holy Spirit to help you be more mindful of that (or those) particular fruit during the next day.  Fruit must be fed to grow.  This is one way of feeding the fruits within us.

August 24, 2019

Counteract Evil with Good

Filed under: commands,cross,forgive,God,grace,Jesus,mercy,prayer,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:44 pm

Romans 12:21 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.  (NIV)

This verse is hard for most of us. It follows these verses in Romans 12:19-20 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”  It is part of the command to forgive others in the same way God forgives us.  We like to think there are some things we don’t have to or shouldn’t have to forgive.  Many of us have had some terrible things done to us.  How can we possibly be expected to forgive the person who killed a love one or raped us or someone we love or spread terrible untruths about us or many other things.  God forgives everything we’ve done or said or thought regardless of what it was as long as we ask through His Son, Jesus, for the forgiveness.  Jesus took every kind of sin to the cross.  Our forgiving and is not so much for the one we are forgiving but for us to keep us turning bitter.  To overcome the evil we start with praying for the one who was evil toward us.  We pray God will work His mercy and grace within that person.  When I did that, I asked God to let me see that person with His eyes.  As He revealed that person to me I began to hurt for that person and my attitude in prayer became less of following a command and more of wanting God’s love to be received by that person for it hurts God for those He loves (that means everyone) to not receive His love.  Forgiving doesn’t mean condoning what the person did or said.  It is right to hate evil.  It is the perpetrator of the evil who needs forgiving along with God’s healing grace and mercy.

July 19, 2019

Sin or Sinner

Filed under: Christ,forgive,God,Jesus,love,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:36 pm

Jude 1:16 16 These people are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage. (NIV)

Recognize these people?  Our world is full of them.  We find them in our governments, our corporations, our legal systems, our schools, our churches—everywhere.  We even find ourselves, believers in God through His Son, Jesus Christ, tempted into these characteristics.  Praise God, Jude doesn’t stop there.  He goes on to tell us who to stay away from those natural, sinful temptations. 20 But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. (Jude 1:20-21) Just because we do our best through the power of God’s Holy Spirit to keep those sinful characteristics out of our own lives doesn’t mean we’re better than the others. In verses 22-23 we read, Be merciful to those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.  As we often sum up, hate the sin, not the sinner.  It is in our mixing up the sinner with the sin that is one of the things that adds to the persecution.  In hating the sinner, the love of God through us is missing.  Since God loves the sinner (and we are still sinners even though forgiven through Jesus Christ) who are we to hate someone God loves?

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