Ginrich's Devotional Blog

November 27, 2013

Possessions

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Ecclesiastes 2:11. Yet when I reflected on everything I had accomplished and on all the effort that I had expended to accomplish it, I concluded: “All these achievements and possessions are ultimately profitless-like chasing the wind! There is nothing gained from them on earth.”

We are in the season of buying. Stores have increased their hours and advertising. We’re told we need all sorts if things and should be giving all sorts of things. Many of us are already surrounded by too many possessions. Yet when we look at all we have accomplished to accumulate where are we? Have any of these things brought glory to God or brought us closer to God? There is nothing wrong with giving things to others but let us be sure we give them the best and everlasting thing. Let’s pass on to others the way to receive God’s gift of forgiveness and eternal life with Him.

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August 20, 2013

Undeserved Manna

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Exodus 16:4. Then the Lord said to Moses, “I am going to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people will go out and gather the amount for each day, so that I may test them. Will they will walk in my law or not?

We will look at manna for a while. God had just protected the Israelites from plagues, death of first-born sons, released them from slavery, opened up water to dry land to escape an army and heat they complained. They were definitely undeserving of any blessings or gifts from God. Yet God rained down mamma from heaven to feed them. He still rains down manna of various forms for us each day. Are weary more deserving than the Israelites were? No. We still overlook thanking God for all He does. We still find things to complain about. Our question is will we thank God for our undeserved manna?

February 20, 2013

Rich in Knowledge

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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1 Corinthians 1:5-7. For you were made rich in every way in him, in all your speech and in every kind of knowledge – just as the testimony about Christ has been confirmed among you – so that you do not lack any spiritual gift as you wait for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Rich in speech and knowledge.  How beautiful.  The question is why don’t we see more of this richness?  We are too here that to be rich in speech and knowledge we must use the spiritual gifts God makes available to us when we receive His Son, Jesus, into our hearts, minds and lives.  Our problem is we stand back and admire the gifts but fail to open them.  Sometimes we open them but fail to use them.  After Easter, if God leads, I will write more on the gifts (many are in the archives of this blog) but I encourage you to do your own study on spiritual gifts: what they are, how to identify them and how to use them.  God did make us to be rich in speech and knowledge but we must do our part.

December 27, 2012

Giving

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Luke 6:38. Give, and it will be given to you: A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over,  will be poured into your lap. For the measure you use will be the measure you receive.” 

Maybe we’re thinking “I did or gave such and such to them but they didn’t do or give anything to me.”  Ever have those thoughts?  We all have at some time or other.  Our question is are we willing to forget what we have done or given to others and remember what others have done or given us?  It may not be the same others we have given to but what counts is the passing on of the giving.  God continually gives to us.  How can we do less for His other children.  For the world the giving season is over.  Food pantries will become empty again, the hungry will not eat.  Let us remember to carry the Christmas spirit of giving with us each and everyday. 
 

December 26, 2012

Day After

Filed under: Bible,Christ,Christmas,devotion,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Hebrews 13:5. Your conduct must be free from the love of money and you must be content with what you have, for he has said, “ I will never leave you and I will never abandon you.” 

It’s the day after the big celebration.  The mess is cleared up,  Perhaps the family is gone.  There may be some disappointment because some didn’t get the material gift they wanted.  Our question is did we celebrate the love of Christmas or was it the love of the material?  God tells us to be content with what we have because what we most need, what is most precious, His love, will never leave us.  We were created to be in fellowship with God; to love and to be loved.  We just celebrated the first arrival in human form of God’s Word, His Son, Jesus, to this earth in a way we could see and relate with.  Now we look forward to His coming back to this earth to take us Home with Him.  The word “wait” has two meanings.  One meaning is to stay, remain or keep until something happens. The other meaning means to serve as a waiter or waitress serves.  This is the wait we must do as we await His return.  We are to serve Him through passing on His love to others and showing them the way into fellowship with God through Christ Jesus.  We have less than a week until a new year.  This is a good time to reflect on how we spent the last year and what changes we must make to be in obedience and fellowship with God for the next year.  Let us open our hearts, minds and ears to Him.

December 23, 2012

Reason for Giving

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christmas,devotion,gifts — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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2 Corinthians 9:7 Each one of you should give just as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, because God loves a cheerful giver.

I’ve heard people say, “I’m not giving them a gift anymore because they never thank me.”  Our question is why do we give to others?  Jesus gave his life for every person who ever walks this earth.  He did not exclude anyone who might not thank Him.  He gave out of pure love.  When we give to anyone, whether it be material or service, it should be because of love and not because we want someone to do or say something.  When we give or do in the love of God it has a lasting effect.  Long after the gift is broken, lost, used up or forgotten the love which gave it will still be alive and remembered.  Let’s try giving to someone who won’t be able to thank us.  Give a gift and sign it “with the love of Christ Jesus.”

Reason for Gifting

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,Christmas,gifts — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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2 Corinthians 9:7 Each one of you should give just as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, because God loves a cheerful giver.

I’ve heard people say, “I’m not giving them a gift anymore because they never thank me.”  Our question is why do we give to others?  Jesus gave his life for every person who ever walks this earth.  He did not exclude anyone who might not thank Him.  He gave out of pure love.  When we give to anyone, whether it be material or service, it should be because of love and not because we want someone to do or say something.  When we give or do in the love of God it has a lasting effect.  Long after the gift is broken, lost, used up or forgotten the love which gave it will still be alive and remembered.  Let’s try giving to someone who won’t be able to thank us.  Give a gift and sign it “with the love of Christ Jesus.”

December 19, 2012

Gifts and Hearts

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,Christmas,devotion — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 5:23-24. So then, if you bring your gift to the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother and then come and present your gift.

These are verses we think about before we celebrate the Lord’s Supper but they are also verses to think about before we give a gift to another.  We have many reasons to give gifts:  feeling obligations, furthering relationships, required for a party, wanting something back and on and on.  There is nothing wrong with party gift exchanges.  They can be made into fun party games.  But real gifts must be given from the heart.  They must be given without any strings attached.  They must not be considered to be needed to be paid back through any obligation or another gift to the giver.  Real gifts represent love being given.  When we give to the homeless or the poor it is out of the love of God that we give.  If we are giving because others are and we want to be seen as giving that is not a gift.  It is an assumed duty or obligation.  Gifts are not obligations.  God was not obligated to restore our relationship with Him and give us eternal life.  He chose to do this because of His love for us.  There is nothing we can ever give Him in exchange for His gift to us except to receive it in the same love it was given to us.  Our question is have we received His gift in this manner?  There is nothing we can do to earn His gift.  We cannot be good enough to deserve His gift.  We can only accept it with thankfulness and joy and tell others about this wonderful gift.

December 18, 2012

Gifts Not Bought

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christmas,devotion,gifts — by ginrich @ 12:20 am
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2 Corinthians 8:12  For if the eagerness is present, the gift itself is acceptable according to whatever one has, not according to what he does not have.

The world of commercialism would have us believe we are to spend lots of money on gifts for others. They encourage us to use credit cards and go into debt.   Their concern is making a profit.  Scripture tells us to give from what we have, not from what we don’t have.  There is nothing wrong with buying things for others as long as we can afford it and as long as it comes from the love of God in us.  Our question is what if we can’t afford to give when we want to express love to another?  My favorite gifts from my children when they were little were decorated notes I could redeem at any time for certain chores they were able to do.  A gift of time and service is often times much more valuable than a gift purchased from some store.  We have several neighbors we exchanged home-baked goods with at Christmas.  It got where it was more of an obligation than a joy.  Now we all go out for a lunch together during the season and enjoy relaxing and sharing with one another.  When we think about what gifts to give we should  be open to the gifts of time and service as well as those which may be bought.   

December 12, 2012

Gifts of Wise Men

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,Christian,devotion,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 2:1-2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, in the time of King Herod, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem  saying, “Where is the one who is born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”

The Christ was first sought by shepherds, thought to be the lower class and very intelligent.  Now there are wise men from the  East seeking to worship the new-born King.  No where does it say how many wise men came.  It only says they brought three types of gifts: gold, frankincense and myrrh.  All 3 very expensive and highly treasured commodities.  These wise men studied the heavens and knew how to read the stars.  They also knew that there was a long-awaited King to be born in Judea.  It was natural for them to go to Jerusalem to see the reigning King and ask where their prophesied King would be born.  When they were told He would be born in Bethlehem so they continued on in their journey.  This journey took them about 2 years.  When they found the Christ they gave their gifts and worshiped Him.  These wise men also had a dream  In their dream they were told Harrod would seek to kill the new-born King.  They made hast to depart in a way that kept them out of Jerusalem.  Their trip to find the new-born King was not an easy trip.  Yet they didn’t give up.  They were determined to take as long as needed, search as hard as needed to find this King and give Him their gifts.  Our question is do we search until we find Him?  Do we take however long is needed to really find Him?  What gifts do we bring to our King?  The girt He desires more than anything is the gift of our hearts, our love for Him and for all His creation – fellow mankind.  Material things we buy for others cannot substitute for the gift of love.  Let us be sure to first and foremost give the gift of love, His love, to those around us.   

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