Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #5: It’s not always about money.

Encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.

1 Thessalonians 5:14

Okay, I’m going to talk about Tom Cruise a little bit, so bear with me. I once dubbed Tom the greatest actor to ever grace a screen, but what I loved most about him was what he did off-screen and here are a few examples:

^ Zac Efron said that Tom taught him to ride a bike. Tom has to find time to do that.

^ Tom never forgets birthdays.

^ Billy Wilder was some sort of legendary director. There’s a long story in there, but to make it short, Tom would just listen to his stories and write him notes. When Billy passed away in 2002, Tom was at the memorial and he let everyone know how much he loved Billy. 

^ Another boy was supposed to be the kid set to steal the show in Jerry Maguire, but he eventually left and Jonathan Lipnicki replaced him. A few weeks later, the boy’s mom calls Cameron Crowe (the director) to tell him to thank Tom for helping her son transition back to his normal life by sending letters and gifts. Crowe couldn’t get over why Tom didn’t tell everyone, but there was no need to shout a good deed from the rooftop

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What’s the moral of some of those stories? You don’t always need money to help someone. Sometimes, all someone might need is a listening ear or a word of advice or even a little bit of your time. Your thoughtfulness. And what if it’s money? If you’re being led to help someone by giving them money, do not selfishly give to feel better about yourself for we should give without sparing (Proverbs 21:26) while delighting in the Lord (Psalm 37:4). 

Some of us are only willing to help someone in need when a reward is involved (Matthew 6:2), but our giving shouldn’t be advertised on a billboard (Matthew 6:4) as it’s supposed to be a thanksgiving to God (2 Corinthians 9:11).

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Today’s Reflection

We do not always know what someone may need but do not assume that it’s always money. Ask God for help to give wisely. 

Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #4: You. Are. Perfect!

And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.

Genesis 1:31 

“Had I been as pretty as my sister!”

“I wish I had a bigger chest!”

“He is everything I wish I was!”

If you’re struggling to accept the way God made you, then you may have been influenced to think that you’re nothing special and not enough by Hollywood and media outlets whose focus are on worldly things. 

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We were created to worship, praise, and serve the Creator and not self. We are not perfect in ways for we all have sinned and fell short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23), but where it concerns that body He gave us, it is perfect as far as He is concerned for He knew us before we were born and called by our name (Jeremiah 1:5).

To alter, change, tweak, add to or take away from, is to destroy what God called “good” and to blame Him for not making us right.

God sees us a masterpiece (Psalm 139:14) and He focuses on what’s on the inside (1 Samuel 16:7). Accepting yourself the way God made you instead of how the world wants you to be is the best gift you can gift yourself as God never makes mistakes.

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Today’s Reflection

God made us individually, yet, wonderfully, as part of His beautiful creation. Our body is not our own to do as we please for it is the temple of the Holy Spirit and we were brought at a price. We should always strive to honor God with our bodies. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) and to focus on His love.

Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #3: The Sinning Christian

We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the One who was born of God keeps them safe, and the evil one cannot harm them.

1 John 5:18

When we become a child of God, we’re expected to put away the old person for we’re altogether a new creation (Ephesians 4:22-24). Our thoughts should no longer be ours. Our old ways should no longer linger. Our hearts should no longer be deceitful. If we really and truly believe and belong to God, then why do we keep sinning? Some of us wilfully sin, but call it a “mistake”, a “flaw”, an “imperfection”! We can dress it up beautifully and call it whatever we want, but a sin is a sin.

We live in a world where temptation is always on the rise. We foolishly think that we have everything under control without relying on God only to be dragged back to our youthful lusts which God tells us to flee (2 Timothy 2:22). We all sin (Romans 3:23), but when we come to Christ by faith, He cleanses us of our sin thus we’re born again (John 3:3). God doesn’t make us righteous, He declares us righteous (Romans 5:1) for we’re still in the flesh and there’s always going to be a constant battle between the flesh and the spirit. You’re going to lose some, you’re going to win some, but if we’re fully surrendered to the control of the Holy Spirit, we’re going to win those battles constantly (Galatians 5:16-17). 

Jesus showed us the way out. When He was tempted, He “offered up prayers and supplications with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death” (Hebrews 5:7). We have to continually submit to God allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us for the Holy Spirit is given to those who obey Him (Acts 5:32) and He works in us to transform us into the image of Christ (Romans 8:29).

As long as you’re fighting and resisting the lust, you’re not sinning. It’s going to be a continuous battle for the Spirit of God and the flesh are at war.

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Today’s Reflection

In Matthew 5:48, Jesus wants us to strive for perfection as it is God’s standard for us. However, Jesus knew that in reality, we would fail that standard for we’re still in the flesh hence the reason why He died for our sins (Romans 5:8).

Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #2: Have you prayed for your enemies lately?💙

But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

Matthew 5:44

When I was a teenager, I used to say that I have no enemies, not knowing that they came in the form of a friend, a co-worker, a neighbor, or even a family member. And that one enemy can use your very own friends and family to turn against you. The world is also an enemy. 

Praying for our enemies is a form of love. When we pray for those who spite us, we follow the Saviour’s example as He hung on the cross. He could’ve asked the Father to persecute His enemies as they did Him, but instead, He chose to ask the Father to forgive them (Luke 23:24). Even when Stephen was being stoned to death, he followed in the footsteps of Jesus and expressed love for his enemies by asking God to forgive them (Acts 7:60). 

RELATED POST|Forgive and forget?

I know it can be hard to pray and sometimes to forgive our enemies, but think about this: do you want to end up just like them? When we act spiteful, we allow hatred to fill our thoughts which in turn quench the Holy Spirit in our hearts and feelings gets in the way, and you may be tempted to spite, act out or even kill your enemy. But when we pray for our enemies, it eradicates anger and in some casts fear for perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18). 

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Today’s Reflection

Before you pray for your enemies, release all negative thoughts including revenge and hateful emotions. Seek wisdom to pray and to love your enemies as Jesus did. 

Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #1: He restoreth my soul 🦋

The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.

Psalm 19:7

Many things can be restored (an old car, money, destroyed photographs, broken bones, etc.) except time. However, did you know that God can restore your lost years?

In 2 Chronicles 6:12-42, during the Dedication of the new temple, King Solomon prayed to God asking Him to forgive the people of Israel and to restore them when they sin. God answers Solomon’s moving prayer in the following chapter offering a four-step process for His people when they sin:

 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

2 Chronicles 7:14

God’s guide to spiritual restoration is simple: We must first humble ourselves before Him recognizing that we’re NOTHING compared to His Sovereignty. We must then pray for His will in our lives for He has a special purpose for each of us when it comes to completing His work. Thirdly, we seek His face by walking and communing with Him continually. In the final step, God wants us to renew our mind by turning away from wickedness and putting our focus entirely on Him.

Let the restoring and healing begin!

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Today’s Reflection

Father, we thank You for loving us despite our flaws and we thank You for blessing us with Your sweet mercies even when we don’t deserve it. We pray that You restore our souls as we redirect our focus on growing closer to You.