Ginrich's Devotional Blog

September 10, 2019

Real Worship

Filed under: God,heart,Holy Spirit,Uncategorized,worship — by ginrich @ 7:25 pm

Amos 5:21-23 21 “I hate, I despise your religious festivals; your assemblies are a stench to me.   Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them. Though you bring choice fellowship offerings, I will have no regard for them. 23 Away with the noise of your songs! I will not listen to the music of your harps.  (NIV)

I am concerned about some of the contemporary services in many of the churches.  The music is loud with memorizing rhythms.  The worship team is professional and the music is such as to grab the emotions.  As many start responding and joining in it tends to become a crowd mentality.  People look around to see how others are responding and start to respond in the same way.  The emphasis seems to be on the emotions to the music rather than on the sense of the presence of God.  I was in a service doing this when I heard the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit ask me if I knew whose worship was true and really pleasing to God.  A little huffed up, being a professional singer, I thought about myself.  Then I was directed to look at the young man standing next to me.  He was not singing any recognizable pitch or rhythm but he also was totally unaware anyone else was around him.  He was totally singing praises and worshiping God, Almighty.   True praise and worship comes from the heart.  True praise and worship comes from the individual.  Yes, individuals can and should often combine with other individuals to offer corporate worship to God but it must come from each one’s heart without concern of what others present might think of the way we sing, stand, look or anything else.  All eyes and hearts should be tuned to God.  Next time we’re are in a setting of corporate worship, let’s be sure to keep our eyes, minds and heart on God, not on our neighbor.

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August 20, 2019

Our Whole Heart

Filed under: Church,encouragement,God,heart,praise,song,Uncategorized,worship — by ginrich @ 7:01 pm

Psalms 100:2 2 Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. (NIV)

.I love the praise and worship time in music at church (or anywhere else).  But I am hearing less and less of worship.  Worship is to and about God.  It is offering Him our thanks and praises and love for Who He is.  So many of the songs we sing are about us, what we want, what we need.  These are songs of intercession.  There is nothing wrong with these songs.  They definitely have their place in our service.  My problem is the imbalance of the songs.  I think the worship songs should outweigh the songs of intercession.  We are gathering together mostly to worship.  We also gather together for encouragement for that is so very necessary but let us first worship with our who heart and being.  That means singing the songs of worship to God, not about God.  That means when the worship leader repeats the song over and over we don’t go into rote in our singing and let our minds wander.  We continue to pay attention to the words and make them real in our hearts and minds.  I’ve shared this before but it bears repeating.  One day as I was enjoying worshiping the Lord with about 500 other worshipers, I heard God say, “Do you know who’s worship is the loveliest.”  Since was a professional singer I started to get puffed up.  Then I heard Him say the man standing right next to me.  I looked.  He had his eyes closed, his hands up and was singing notes that didn’t even exist in a rhythm that didn’t really match any known rhythm but he was totally unaware of anyone else being around.  He was totally focused on worshiping Hid Father God.  Oh what a lesson I learned.  Worship is totally from the heart and is not for others to think you sound really good.  Let us worship with our whole hearts and not be concerned with what others around us might think.  Their focus should be on worshiping God, not on what others are doing.

August 12, 2019

David

Filed under: faith,God,heart,sin,trust,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:08 pm

1 Samuel 16:7 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”  (NIV)

I really enjoy reading about David.  I relate to him.  He was the youngest son.  He was considered as inconsequential and relegated to tend seep – a lowly and menial job.  He was so unimportant to his family he wasn’t even called to come with his other brothers when Samuel came to anoint one of them to become the future king.  After going through all the brothers assembled and God telling Samuel no each time Samuel had to ask Jessie if there wasn’t yet another son.  Jessie reluctantly called for David to come.  From there we trace the life of David.  God considered David to be a man after His own heart.  Wow.  I want God to feel like that about me.  What was it about David that caused God to feel that way?  Look at David’s trust in God.  Though still a young and small boy, David had absolute faith in God’s faithfulness.  I know of no one else who would ever face a giant in full body armor with nothing but a slingshot and a stone.  Yes, David disobeyed God and fell into sin several times.  What was good was he would admit it as soon as it was brought to his attention, confess and repent.  David recognized his nakedness before God and his absolute dependence on God.  Thank you, David for showing me an imperfect person can be one who God calls a person after His own heart.

August 10, 2019

Holy Spirit Welcome

Filed under: Bible,Christian,God,heart,Holy Spirit,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:35 pm

Acts 19 The first thing he (Paul) said was, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?  Did you take God into your mind only, or did you also embrace Him with your heart?  Did He get inside you?”  (The Message)

I like the way the Message amplifies this.  There are so many professing Christians who only know Jesus in their mind.  Many are believing in their minds because they were raised that way.  God wants us to be one with Him.  He wants to dwell inside us with His Holy Spirit.  Coming humbly to God the Father through His Son, Jesus Christ is more than confessing our sins, asking forgiveness and saying we believe in Jesus.  We must be willing to allow the Holy Spirit to dwell in us.  He is there wanting in us the moment we come to Jesus.  In actuality He is in us the moment we say yes to Jesus.  But being in us doesn’t help us unless we become aware of Him and give Him free reign in our hearts (the core of our belief).  If you haven’t fully welcomed the Holy Spirit in your heart and life, do so now.  Just tell Him you want His guidance in your life and want to learn to recognize His gentle whisper within You.  The Holy Spirit is our guide, our interpreter of the written word of God, the Holy Bible, and the comforter as we walk this earthly part of our lives.  Welcome Him with you.

May 31, 2019

In the Flesh

Filed under: God,heart,Holy Spirit,ministry,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:08 pm

Romans 8:5 5 Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. (NIV)

By the word, flesh, Paul doesn’t mean our physical bodies.  He is talking about the materialistic world in which we live.  Let us say we want to buy a boat or new drapes or anything else but decide to do that we can’t give our tithe for a month or two.  This is walking according to the flesh.  Anything that puts following the precepts of God behind any other desire is walking in the flesh.  There is a new movement now called minimalism.  The reasons are as varied as the people in this movement.  When the reason is only for more money to do more things considered fun it is a fleshly reason.  When the reason is not being entrapped by too much requiring our attention, thus competing with our time to fulfill the ministry God has given us we are endeavoring to walk in the Spirit.  Let us ask the Holy Spirit to help us keep our priorities in order.  It’s okay to have what we call our creature or fleshly comforts as long as we are still putting God first in our minds, hearts and lives.

May 15, 2019

Renewal

Filed under: Bible,Father,God,heart,Holy Spirit,prayer,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:36 pm

2 Corinthians 4:16 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. (NIV)

As I watched a young man sprint up a flight of stair 2 at a time I recalled I used to be able to do that.  The aging process can be hard on our emotions.  We miss the things we use to be able to do.  But we are not to look backward.  As we age, we grow in wisdom.  As we grow in wisdom, if we really are followers of Jesus and thus children of God, we are being renewed inwardly each and every day.  Our understanding of our Father grows every time we pray and every time we read and meditate on His written word, the Holy Bible.  I see it as a trade off and much prefer the increased wisdom and knowing our Father more intimately over the physical abilities of the young.  What really amazes me is how God’s word can address all issues and thoughts we might ever have.  Fussing about what I can no longer do has been replaced with thanks for what He is now enabling me to know and do.  Let us never lose heart over an ability we loose but always look forward to our daily renewal through the Holy Spirit.

May 8, 2019

Our Garden

Filed under: Father,garden,God,heart,Jesus,Lord,prayer,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:37 pm

Genesis 3:8 8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.  (NIV)

John 20:15 15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”
Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” (NIV)

The place where mankind chose to separate himself from God was in a garden.  The first thing Jesus did after He was resurrected was talk to Mary in the garden.  We can still communicate with Jesus in the garden.  Our garden is our prayer room.  Our prayer room doesn’t have to be a real room with 4 walls.  It is any room we make in our mind and heart to be alone with our Father and communicate with Him.  Charles and John Wesley’s mother had her prayer room.  It was comprised of the space under her apron that she would put over her head to let others know she was busy having a conversation with our Father.  The location of our garden can change according to our circumstances.  We can make our prayer room in a plane, in an office, in school or anywhere we might be.  Let us go into our garden to talk with our Lord throughout each and every day.

May 6, 2019

Take to Heart

Filed under: Bible,confess,Father,God,God's Word,heart,Holy Spirit,prayer,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:00 pm

Ezekiel 3:10 10 And he said to me, “Son of man, listen carefully and take to heart all the words I speak to you. (NIV)

Oh how much we all need to take this verse into us.  We must listen carefully.  We are so very distracted by all the noise surrounding us throughout our days.  We can’t take God’s words to heart if we don’t listen carefully.  I am guilty of keeping music playing.  We must have times of silence, especially when we pray and when we read God’s written word, the Holy Bible.  When listening carefully, we must really take what we hear and read to heart.  We can’t do this if unconfessed sin is blocking us.  Always start with confessing and a refilling of the Holy Spirit.  It takes a clean heart to receive the words of our perfect God.  Let us not fear silence.  Let us embrace silence and listen carefully to our Father Who so very much desires for us to hear Him.

May 2, 2019

First Place

Filed under: God,heart,Jesus,treasure,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:29 pm

Matthew 19:21 21 Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” (NIV)

God doesn’t have a problem with people being rich.  God wants first place in our hearts and lives.  Nothing is to take precedence over our love and obedience to God.  Jesus knew this rich man’s heart.  The man valued his riches over anything else and would not make the choice to part with them.  We must each ask ourselves what is holding us back from giving all of our self to God?  It could be one or more of many different things.  With some it might be fame, power, money, a relationship with someone, some kind of material possession like cars or high fashion.  It could be an activity that is more important than God.  Each one of us is different and has different priorities.  God wants first place in our priorities.  Let’s be honest with ourselves and open to ask God to show us anything that we have, want or do that keeps Him out of first place in our lives, thoughts and actions.

April 20, 2019

Broken Heart

Filed under: God,heart,Holy Spirit,Jesus,mercy,Messiah,trials,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:47 pm

John 19:26 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” (NIV)

Can you possibly imagine watching your child, the one you gave birth to, the one you fed, taught and raised to adulthood, being taunted, beaten and nailed to a cross?  I can’t imagine such pain.  I know I wouldn’t be able to keep quiet.  Yet, Mary was there and was quiet.  I’m sure she must have had tears running down her cheeks but she remained quiet throughout the entire trial.  There is probably a very good reason for her remaining quiet.  She knew, without a doubt, her son, Jesus, was the Son of God.  She had faith in God and knew He would work good through all of this.  That doesn’t stop her heart from hurting.  We have many trials we have to walk through that hurt our hearts.  Our question is, do we blame God for our trials or do we look to Him knowing He is right with us and will help us get through the trials.  Even when our heart is breaking, do we remain in the peace of God that passes all human understanding?  We either believe God or we don’t.  There is no half way.  We can’t only believe Him when all is good for us.  Our belief must be consistent.  Let’s allow the Holy Spirit to completely abide in us and let us choose to continually abide in the Father and the Son.

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