Ginrich's Devotional Blog

August 13, 2012

Servant

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Phillipians 2:6 who though he existed in the form of God did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself by taking on the form of a slave, by looking like other men, and by sharing in human nature.

A servant exists to serve the interest of his master. There is no room for pride, self-congratulations or a need for gratitude for the servant.  There is no expected reward for a servant.  Jesus, God’s Son, came to be a slave or servant.  Though He was and is equal with God He emptied Himself of all due Him.  He came to earth and served to show us how to serve.  We have nothing in and of ourselves to boast.  We are sinful beings.  We cannot even be as servants without the power of God’s Holy Spirit in us, working in and through us.  Yet we take the attitude, “Do for me.”  We take this attitude with our prayers to God and with our relations with others.  We, by nature, do not have a servants’ heart.  Our question is are we ready to recognize this and choose to allow God, through His Holy Spirit enable us to serve Him?  We are called to serve Him throug our prayers, praises worship and giving.  He also calls us to serve one another.  No where does He say to serve only those worthy of our service.  He says serve even our enemies.  We’ve tried to teach our grandchildren when they see trash on the ground it doesn’t matter who put it there, if they see it they are to pick it up.  Such an easy task for any of us but such a heart hard thing to do.  Let us each confess our lack of a servant’s heart and ask God to teach us how to have a servant’s heart toward Him and toward all His creation.

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March 24, 2012

Challenge

Filed under: Advent,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:56 am
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Luke 10:27     The expert answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.”

People like to justify their thought and actions.  This man knew what the scriptures said.  He wanted to justify his actions with a question.  He follows Jesus’s agreement with the scripture with the question, “Who is my neighbor?”. 

We have great difficulty loving the Lord our god with all our hert, soul and strength.  We have difficulty really loving ourselves.  Jesus said anyone in need is our neighbor.  On occasion it is easier to rech out to some who are in dire need if we judge the need not coming from their own cause.  This isn’t love but sympathy.  Real love was displayed by Jesus.  He stretched out His arms on the cross even though we didn’t, don’t nd never will or can deserve it.  It is love without judgement.  Our love is connected with judgement: judgement of God when things don’t go our way, judgement to ourselves when we don’t meet our own expectations and judgement of others when they don’t meet our own expectations.  No where in scripture is judgement mentioned s prt of love.  Our question is how do we love the way Jesus does?  First we must be sure we confess we are sinners and in need of God’s mercy and grace through His only Son, Jesus.  Then we must invite Him into our heart, soul and body as our Lord and Savior.  When we do this we receive His Holy Spirit.  Then we must continually allow the Holy Spirit to teach us and grow His love in and through us by Bible study, prayer, meditation and fellowship with others who are also allowing Him to bring them growth.  As a living being we cannot stay static.  We either continue to grow or we gradually wane and die.  We cannot sit piously in a church and go through the actions.  If we are the same as we were yesterday we have waisted a day.  What do you choose?

March 11, 2012

Six Woes

Filed under: Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:53 am
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Luke 11: 37-54 Six Woes spoken by Jesus.

As Jesus takes His final walk toward Jerusalem He is concerned with our hearts. We tend to be concerned with how we look on the outside and how others perceive us. We pay attention to big things and tend to pass of things we consider small. God is more concerned about what is inside of us. He doesn’t want us to neglect any part of His Word. It is good to read and meditate on the six woes recorded in these verses. As we meditate on them we must be hones with ourselves. We like to think we are thinking and doing all we should but we are good at deceiving ourselves. Self-honesty is hard. When we put our faith in God and are assured of His love and His power we can dare to be honest with ourselves. God already knows. We must come to the place of knowing what is and isn’t in us so we can receive the power from God. Let us slow down today and spend some time meditating on these verses and listening to God’s Holy Spirit as He shows us our lack. It is His Spirit that will fill us so our hearts, minds and actions will be in accord with God.

March 5, 2012

Mary and Martha

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:33 am
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Luke 10:41-42 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (The Holy Bible, New International Version)

Much has been said about the “Mary/Martha personalities. Most of us (men and women both) have a mixture of the two personalities. There are times are consumed with the material problems and presumed responsibilities of the day. There are days we end with wondering if it was “much ado about nothing.” Hopefully there are days when we desire to draw apart from the material world and spend time with our God. Jesus wasn’t telling Martha she should never be about her chores. He was telling her there were times that chores should be put on the back burner and time should be taken to feed our spirits. Mary chose to delay chores and listen to Jesus. How many times do we delay our business to take quiet time with our Lord? John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist denomination, was a good example. On days he was scheduled to be the busiest he got up extra early to have more time with God. He knew to be well balanced he must balance his time spent serving with time spent communing with God. Let us develop the habit of always allotting quality time with God each and every day. That’s more than reading devotion and/or a couple verses of scripture. That’s to include time to listen to what God is putting in our hearts each and every day. Our question is do we take time to listen as Mary did?

February 17, 2012

Fickle Heart

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 2:24 am
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Hebrews 3:12 See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. (The Holy Bible, New International Version)

Few Christians ever admit to having a sinful, unbelieving heart or that they every turn away from God. Actually we tend to have fickle hearts. Many only go to church when it is convenient for them. Many only occasionally open the Bible to read, let alone to study. Many are very fickle in their prayer life, only thinking about talking to God when they have a really big problem. We need to guard against inconsistency. Being too tired, too uncomfortable or too inconvenienced is no excuse to not worship, serve and obey God. Consistency takes discipline. Discipline takes effort. Effort takes motivation. When we tend to want to slack in our obedience to God we must think of what God has done and is doing for us. Our tiredness, inconvenience or uncomfortableness doesn’t compare to what Jesus walked through in our place. When we stop to really reflect on the price paid for our forgiveness we find our fickle hearts ebbing and motivation for consistency in commitment gaining. Our question today is do we have a fickle heart today or this week? Let us guard against it. Let us continue to go in the living God’s direction.

January 4, 2012

Our Whole Heart

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:37 am
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Psalms 9:1 I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders The Holy Bible, New International Version.

Do any of us praise our God with our whole heart? This means do we really put all of our being into praising God? Are we as enthusiastic as we are when our team makes a score? We boast when our team wins. Do we tell others as readily about the things God does? What do we talk about the most? So many worship singers, actors, dancers and others. We seek to read and hear all about them – who they are, what they’re doing and on and on. Do we seek to see and hear and read about what God is doing with as much curiosity and enthusiasm? We need to watch our priorities. When TV or other activities take precedent over our time with God we are so out of relationship with Him. Yes, sometimes it might seem we are talking to a brick wall. Anything worthwhile takes perseverance. As we seek God we will learn to hear. As we learn to hear we will desire to seek more. We aim for the time we just can’t seem to be aware of being with Him enough. We will hunger and thirst after His righteousness and He promises we will be filled. But to be filled we must eat and drink of Him. Pray for that desire.

December 4, 2011

Advent 8

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christian,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 12:17 pm
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Ro 15:6 so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

We celebrate the 8th day of Advent – the start of our 2nd week.  We are told to join together with one heart and collectively, as one mouth, glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  When we are together with other Christians what do we do with our mouths.  We seem to find a lot to talk about and even some things to disagree about.  We spend a good bit of time talking to each other.  How much time do we spend speaking and singing praises to God?  How much time to we testify to His glory by giving Him praise for what He has been doing in and through us since we last met?  Let us on this day share with more than one of God’s love and give Him the glory for what we have in our lives – freedom to do this.  There are so many things He has given us and blessed us with.  Let us glorify Him – not so much because of what He has given us as more for what He has done for us – the One Whose birth as a man we prepare to celebrate.

November 23, 2011

Giving Generously

Deuteronomy 15:10 Give generously to him and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to.

What a beautiful promise.   God will bless us in all our work and in everything we put our hand (effort) to.  However, as with most promises, this comes with a stipulation.  We must give to others generously and without a grudging heart.  In these hard times many have trouble doing this.  Many scarcely have enough for food, can’t find jobs, don’t have housing.  How are they to give?  What do they have to give?  Giving is not limited to money or material things though they are definitely included.  We can give of our labor.  We can give of our time.  We can give our prayers of intercession.  Give a visit or phone call to someone who is lonely.  Give an encouraging word to someone who is downhearted.  It is a generous heart that God values and a willingness to give out of whatever we have.  My favorite gift from my children was a coupon with an extra chore on it for me to redeem whenever I wanted to.  Regardless of our finances, our material possessions, our heath or any other circumstances we all have something we can give to another.  Instead of focusing on what we don’t have, let us thank God for what we do have and share it generously and happily with others.

November 14, 2011

Sin Rateing System

Filed under: Bible,Christian,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Uncategorized — by ginrich @ 1:03 am
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Proverbs 20:9 Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure, I am clean and without sin”?

I believe we all know the answer to that proverbial question.  The only one who haw constantly kept a pure heart and was without sin was Jesus.  His heart is still pure but He took all of sins on Himself on the cross.  Even though we know we are not pure or sinless we are so quick to judge and condemn others.  We put a value system on sin and pick certain sins to speak out against.  We think certain sins of others are worse than our own sin of thinking ourselves better than another.  In our time and space it may appear so.  When God looks, He sees the separation sin causes between Him and us.  If we have accepted Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, as our Lord and Savior and choose to follow Him, walking in His laws, God sees the blood of His Son on us and knows we are His.  It is the blood of Jesus that makes our hearts pure and makes us clean and without sin in the eyes and judgment of God.  Let us quick putting a value system on sins and get on with living as Christ did – with love and acceptance and striving to walk in obedience to His Word.

October 29, 2011

Consistency

Ps 51:10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

What a beautiful prayer.  The question is, do we really mean it?  We are so well behaved in church.  We watch what we say, we praise God and we guard or actions.  How are we when we are away from other Christians?  What do we say when another driver cuts us off?  What kind of expression is on our faces when we are having to wait for something or someone longer than we think we should?  When we ask for a steadfast spirit we are asking to be consistent in our speech, actions, obedience and love of our God.  We really do have a choice.  We really do have control of our responses.  Let us try to remember God sees and hears all we do and think.  Let us choose to be steadfast and pleasing to God.

 

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