Ginrich's Devotional Blog

January 14, 2020

Don’t Know You

Filed under: fruit,God,heart,Holy Spirit,Lord,love,miracle,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:37 pm

Matthew 7:22-23 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!    (NIV)

Some will wonder how can someone who has performed many miracles in the name of Jesus possibly be unknown by our Lord.  God doesn’t look on the deeds we perform.  God also doesn’t let His name go out in vain.  He will do miracles and will allow demons to be driven out but He looks on the heart of the one who is involved in the action.  He judges and recognizes us by the fruits of His Holy Spirit.  Are those fruits really in our hearts?  Do we really let those fruits grow in us?  Do we display those fruits not only when others can see but also when we are alone?  We can find these fruits listed in Galatians 5:22-23 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control.  Do we love God more than our own reputation and more than any other person or thing or possession?  Why are we doing what appears to be good?  Is it so others will think good of us?  Do we think by doing good we earn points with God?  With God there is no such thing as earning points.  God is love.  God recognizes love and responds to love.  It is the love of God as it flows in and through us back to God that unites us with God.  If we don’t love all God created we cannot be loving God.  Let us be sure our hearts are right.  Let us think, speak and do all we do in love – the love God continually gives us and desires to flow through us to others.

January 13, 2020

Job’s Pride

Filed under: Christians,gender,God,grace,love,pride,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:03 pm

Job 1:1 1 In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil. (NIV)

I appreciate the study of the book of Job.  That is because it really gets my attention and draws me upright.  On casual reading we think Job was doing really good.  Even God told Satan Job was righteous.  However, Job was one who was legalistic.  He was doing everything to earn his way with God.  He didn’t know about the grace of God.  Job thought he was good and was proud of his goodness.  He even boasted about it later in the book.  God finally talked to Job citing Who He is and what He had done and drew Job up short.  As with the prodigal sons (one went off and the other stayed home but both were prodigal in their own way) and with the pharacess who thought themselves to be so good but whose hearts were full of self, Job was full of self until God got his attention.  We, as Christians, also struggle with pride of being good compared to the thief or prostitute or murderer.  We forget it is not our works or our presumed goodness that connects us with God.  We are only in the presence of God through God’s grace and love.  God doesn’t desire sacrifices or even good works.  God wants us to love Him as much as He loves us.  I don’t know about you but I know I fall far short of that.  I desire to be there and I ask God to do all He needs to in order to bring me to that point.  What we do that we call good must be done in love, not in the desire to “earn points” with God.  If it’s been awhile, go back and reread Job, especially where God talks to him but, as we read, we need to put ourselves in Job’s place.

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.

January 1, 2020

Demonstrate Love

Filed under: anger,God,Holy Spirit,love,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:47 pm

Romans 7:14 14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin.  (NIV)

After the emancipation act many of the slaves stayed on the plantations.  When asked, they said they didn’t know anything else.  That is the same today with people not opening up to God.  We are born as slaves to sin.  We have a sin life-style.  In the culture we don’t know anything else.  We are comfortable in our familiar life-style.  We are afraid of change.  Opening up to God is frightening to many people.  What has been done to them in the name of love has not been good.  They have a hard time being willing to trust the God of love.  Many times God has been presented to them as judgmental, angry and stern.  It is hard for many people to be willing to walk into the unknown – that is unknown to them personally.  That is why it is so very important for those of us who have experienced the love of God to show that kind of love to all those around us.  We must not come over as judgmental or angry.  I had a conversation with someone today.  She said she has been trying to witness to some of her family and they keep saying for her to quit preaching to them.  We can demonstrate much more of the love of God through our actions than we can our words.   Let us demonstrate God’s love through our actions, keep our words in prayer to God and watch as the Holy Spirit draws others to God.

December 30, 2019

Legalism

Filed under: Christians,God,God's Word,heart,Jesus,judging,love,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:28 pm

Galatians 5:1 ​1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.  (KJV)

In this instance Paul is mostly emphasizing the legalistic Jewish rite of circumcision.  However, this verse applies to any type of legalism.  So many Christians have replaced love with legalism.  The extra rules and rites that have been established as tradition have become more important than love.  When true Godly love is present and flowing there is no need for laws.  We must be sure to choose to love all those God puts in our path and not be judgmental or critical.  God loves the lost as much as He loves those who have opened their hearts, minds and lives to Him through His Word, His Son, Jesus.  Let us never put legalism in front of Godly  love.

December 24, 2019

Who Is Jesus

Filed under: Father,God,Holy Spirit,Jesus,Lamb,love,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:00 pm

Matthew 16:13-16 13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”  (NIV)

Just who is this man Jesus whose birth we celebrate?  Some say He never existed in spite of all the facts of history and eye witnesses.  Some say He was just a good man.  Some say He was just another prophet.  There are many different answers but only one right answer.  We read in 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.  No one who has ever walked on this earth has had more of an impact on all generations during and after His presence on this earth.  He is the only one ever born of a virgin – necessary as the Son of God, the Word made flesh and the spotless lamb through whom all may be forgiven of their separation from God and adopted as God’s children.  Satan couldn’t tempt Him  Harrod couldn’t kill Him, unbelievers can’t hide Him.  He lives with our Father, God and will return to this earth to bring all God’s children home.  No one born in such lowly means could ever have the impact that this baby, the Son of God, continues to have on the people of this earth.  Let us thank God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit for loving us more than we can comprehend.

December 17, 2019

Strong in Heart

Filed under: Bible,discouragment,God,God's Word,heart,love,trials,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:38 pm

Proverbs 3:5 5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. (NIV)

This is a very hard thing to do.  We want to understand everything around us.  When we hit a block, we get upset because we think we need to understand.  We like to be the problem fixer and to fix a problem we think we need to understand it.  God is of a different mind-set.  He more than understands.  He absolutely knows all answers.  When we go through trials we often ask, why.  Quite often it’s not for understanding but for a “why me” attitude.  When we demand to understand why God allows some things we are showing a lack of trust.  All we need to know is already contained in the pages of the Holy Bible.  Understanding that is necessary is given to us through the Holy Spirit.  When the time is right for us to understand, the Holy Spirit will give us whatever understanding is needed.  Our job is to trust in the Lord with all our heart even when we don’t understand the why of a situation.

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.

November 29, 2019

Fall Short

Filed under: glory,God,love,sin,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 7:32 pm

Romans 3:23 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,  (NIV)

To understand this verse we must first know what sin is.  Sin is a singular tense.  Jesus died for our sin; He didn’t die for what we call sins.  The word sin is an old archery word meaning miss the target.  When an archer shot, if he didn’t hit the bullseye it was said he sinned – he missed his target of the bullseye.  The above verse goes on ti say sin is falling short of the glory of God.  We are here to be in the image of God.  We should reflect the unseen character of God by displaying it in our lives.  What is the character of God?  God is love.  Look up 1 Corinthians 13.  As we read it, substitute our own name every place the word love appears.  These are the characteristics of God.  We fall short of those characteristics.  We reflect some of them some of the time but we are not consistent.  God is consistent.  We must all agree we are all sinners because we all fall short of the glory which is God.

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