Ginrich's Devotional Blog

April 19, 2013

Our Concern

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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John 21:21-22. So when Peter saw him, he asked Jesus, “Lord, what about him?” Jesus replied, “If I want him to live until I come back, what concern is that of yours? You follow me!”

One of the questions Peter asked Jesus during those 40 days was about what someone else should be doing.  Jesus basically told Peter to be concerned about His own obedience to Him.  We are so prone to compare our own actions with those of another.  We think if they don’t do something we don’t need to do it either or if they do something we should do it also.  We need to listen to Jesus’ reply to Peter.  We need to pay attention to what He tells us to do and follow through in obedience.  If we choose to compare ourselves with anyone it should be with Jesus.  We are to be imitators of Him, not of others.  Jesus walked in total obedience to all God told Him to do.  Our question is evident here.  My concern is me and I fall far short.

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December 13, 2012

Herod

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,devotion,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Matthew 2:15  He stayed there until Herod died. In this way what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet was fulfilled: “ I called my Son out of Egypt.” 

Here is yet another old prophecy fulfilled, “I called my Son out of Egypt.”  Several things had to occur for this to happen.  The wise men had to be warned by God to go home a different way to avoid Herod.  Joseph had to be warned to flee.  Not only did Joseph have to be warned, he had to obey right away.  Once again Joseph listened to his dream and responded.  He got up, packed the gifts from the wise men and took Mary and the baby Jesus in the dark of the night and went to Egypt.  He stayed there until  God told Him all was safe.  We don’t understand why God allowed all those babies to be killed.  From our perspective it seems really cruel.  From our perspective we can’t see what those babies would face had they continued on this earth.  Our vision is very one-sided.  Our question is do we choose to trust God in and through all things even when we don’t understand?  It wasn’t the first time in history babies were slain.  Moses was born during a time as that.  God protected Moses and used him to bring the Hebrews out of slavery in Egypt.  Now God is using Egypt to protect His Son.  Man does very cruel things to man.  God does not cause man to do those things but God does protect the ones He chooses to work through.  They also have to be wanting to walk in obedience to Him.  God wants to work through each of us.  Are we willing to respond in total obedience? Are we willing to go into action as soon as we see the need?  It may not be something big like leading a multitude out of slavery.  It may be just as simple as helping just one person.  it will require a willingness to hear God, see the task and obey through action.  Let us be like the wise men and like Joseph and listen and respond.  

April 3, 2012

Give to Caesar or God

Filed under: Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:00 am
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Luke 20:25 “Caesar’s,” they replied. He said to them, “Then give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s (The Holy Bible, New International Version.)

Even though the cross is in sight of Jesus, He continues teaching. The religious leaders continue trying to trap Him into saying the wrong thing. Here they are trying to get Jesus to say it is wrong to pay taxes – which money should go to the temple. We seem to think that the tithe is only about money. God already owns all in creation. He does not need anything. We do use money to maintain places to come together and worship and for things to help us learn. We also use money to give to others in need of food, housing, etc. But the tithe, what Jesus wants us to give to God, encompasses more than money. He wants our hearts, our minds and our time. None of that is really ours but we are in possessions of hearts mind and time because of His grace. He is asking us to be wise stewards of all of our being and give all to God through obedience and worship. We are to be honest in our taxes paying to our country what is due. We are also to be honest in our churches. We don’t go to church to see what we can get out of it or what it can do for us. We go to give ourselves to God. Yes, we give our money tithes and offerings but we must be sure we give our time and talents with a thankful heart to God for His allowing us to use the time and talents on this earth as we learn more of Him. Our question is what is our attitude in our giving of anything?

March 26, 2012

Balance

Filed under: Advent,Bible,Christ,devotion,God's Word,Jesus,Lent — by ginrich @ 1:28 am
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Luke 10:40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” ( New International Version)

I’ve written about the Mary/Martha contradiction before (see archives).  Most of us are a mixture of the two personalities.  In our busy electronic age it is becoming even more a challenge not to be distracted.  Keeping a healthy balance mentally emotionally physically and spiritually takes effort.  It would not be so hard on us if we would put our prayer life into proper perspective.  In our pride we think we are capable of making most decisions on our own.  We only need to consult God on the really big things.  Surely he doesn’t want us to ask about everything.  As we grow in fellowship and obedience with God we do learn what decisions to make in line with His will and purpose for our walk on this earth.  This is a learning process.  I’ve found the more time I spend with the Lord through Bible study, prayer and meditation, the more time I want to spend with Him.  I pray during this Lenten season we are all developing good habits that will produce a Christ-centered, God-balanced walk. 

November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Day

Filed under: Bible,Christian,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:53 am
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Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God

Today is Thanksgiving.  Many of us spent yesterday preparing for the feast.  Most of us have an overabundance to be thankful for.  The most precious thing is our relationship with God through His Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Because of that relationship our sins are forgiven and our prayers are heard and answered.  Sometimes not in the way we think they should be but in the way God knows is best for us and for His glory.  Think about the amount of time we prepare for one meal – our Thanksgiving dinner.  We make it one of the most precious meals of the year.  Think about the wedding feast that is to come when Jesus comes for His Bride – the Church – you and me.  How much time do we spend preparing ourselves for the greatest feast of all times?  What do we do to prepare?  We walk our lives in obedience to God’s word.  We live in peace and with thankful and grateful hearts.  We reach out to God’s other children and His creation in love and are careful stewards of all He gives us.  Whether we feast at home, at another’s home, at a restaurant or at a shelter we have a lot of thanks and praise to give to God.  Have a thankful and blessed Thanksgiving.

November 21, 2011

Love and Obedience

Filed under: Bible,Christian,devotion,God's Word,Jesus — by ginrich @ 1:59 am
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John 14:15 “If you love me, you will obey what I command.

Ouch.  That hurts.  My love for Jesus is measured by my obedience.  I don’t know about you but I know I don’t obey what He has commanded 100 percent of the time.  I say things I shouldn’t say, think things I shouldn’t think, don’t speak up when I should, waste time and on and on.  When I am aware of these things I do confess and ask for forgiveness and through the grace of God and through the blood of Jesus I am forgiven.  My problem is I still put myself first.  I block His Holy Spirit from flowing freely through me.  How do I get where He wants?  I start each day acknowledging the day and I both belong to God and I am available for His use and His glory.  Like an alcoholic, it is one minute at a time.  I can practice the presence of God minute by minutes.  Gradually the times I allow the Holy Spirit to flow freely through me will increase and my own selfishness will decrease.  Praise God He will finish the good work He has begun in me.  He’ll do the same for you.  All you need to is ask Him.

November 4, 2011

Left His Throne

Jn 3:13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven —the Son of Man.

No other being has ever willingly stepped down from a throne and a beautiful home full of praises to come into the humblest of state.  He walked through dangerous times, went to school, learned obedience to His earthly parents and withstood  persecution so we could know His Father.  What He has done is beyond the scope of our own finite  minds to understand.  The cost is greater than we’ll ever know or experience ourselves.  Just these facts alone should be enough to make praise and thanksgiving well up inside of us.  If Jesus was obedient, how much more should we be obedient to His Word.  We can start by praising Him and reaching out in love to our fellow man.

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.

 

September 27, 2011

Who Will You Follow

Ro 12:2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is  —his good, pleasing land perfect will.

There is a strong movement in several Christian denominations to conform their beliefs to the beliefs of the world.  They are claiming that all of God’s commands in the Bible are not relevant in today’s world.  They have decided the can choose to keep what they like and toss out what they don’t like.  They’re major concern is numbers of members and amount of money not being dedicated to God and to obedience to His Word.  God told us through Jesus that we are to be the light of the world.  We are to set the standards and be the example and encourage the world to desire to follow God’s way.  The question is do we choose to let God set our standard and follow Him or do we choose to fit into the changing world standards and follow the world?  Decide today whom you will choose.

September 6, 2011

Living in Obedience

Jn 14:21 Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”

 

The first words of this verse is “whoever has my commands.”  We cannot have what we don’t know.  It is so important for us to have a habit of regular Bible study to know the commands of God.  Without knowledge we don’t know what to obey.  The next step is to obey the commands.  Obedience is hard when desire is not there.  Without love for God obedience is an empty act and usually will end in failure.  It is God’s love in us and the love He gives us given back to Him that makes it possible for us to obey.  Not only possible, it makes obedience joyful.  Each time we obey our trust in God grows as we experience His faithfulness to keep His promises.  With each step of obedience we become more able to wait on God’s timing, learning through our growing trust that His timing is much better than our own.  With each step of obedience our commitment to follow Him grows stronger.  The more we are obedient, the more we desire to study the Scripture to learn more of God and the more we learn of God the more we experience Him in our daily lives.  The act of accepting Jesus as our Lord and Savior is only the first step.  Growth into Oneness in Him is a life-long process which we must diligently desire to experience the full and abundant life He promises.

 

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