Gifts To The Poor

Gifts To The Poor By Kirk Hunt

To establish among them that they should celebrate yearly the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month of Adar,   as the days on which the Jews had rest from their enemies, as the month which was turned from sorrow to joy for them, and from mourning to a holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and joy, of sending presents to one another and gifts to the poor.

Esther 9:21–22 NKJV

The Jewish holiday of Purim is a time of joy and celebration.  Haman’s conspiracy was thwarted and Mordecai personally promoted by King Ahasuerus.  Yet, in all of the feasting and festivity, gifts to the poor were intended to be a part of Purim.

Too often those who are doing well give no thought about those who are struggling.  You may not be able to erase all of their suffering or difficulty, but you can share your joy.  Joy and celebration is not a zero-sum game.  You and they can win, simultaneously.

Were the poor at risk from Haman’s plot?  Yes, just like wealthier folk.  Life and liberty are precious commodities, regardless of your income level.  Was their salvation from Haman’s conspiracy any less precious?  Not one iota less than other folk.

Consider the things you enjoy, the privileges you experience, and the benefits you receive.  Is it really so difficult or onerous to share from all that God has provided to you?  After all, sharing increases joy in the world.

God has blessed you.  Consider how you can pass His blessings on to others, as Jesus commanded.  Give your gifts, especially to those less fortunate.  Joy, divided and distributed, gets larger, not smaller.

Think:        I can share my joy, especially with those who are less fortunate.

Pray:           “Lord, help me to remember to bless others in Your Name.”

 

Copyright © July 2017, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press.  You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Hope In The King

Hope In The King By Kirk Hunt

“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I hope in Him!”

Lamentations 3:24 NKJV

I pray that in this New Year you will build God’s Kingdom. Of course, it would be better (and easier) to do so from a place of great provision and extraordinary favor. Your circumstances, rich or poor, renowned or reviled, do not define your hope. Your hope rests in God.

The Book of Lamentations was traditionally written by Jeremiah, at the time of Jerusalem’s destruction by Babylon. In the figurative or literal smoke of the burning Temple, grief is easy. Still, Lamentations points to hope. No matter what our circumstances are, we can rely on God.

Lamentations correctly points out the errors of Judah and her kings. If anything, God’s judgment was overdue. Still, there was mercy and grace for the Jewish people, despite God’s discipline.

Regardless of our circumstances, we are in the hands of a loving God. Even when we are in rebellion against Him. Even when we are disciplined by Him. No matter your current circumstances, you can move forward with hope in God.

Today, you are living in the love, mercy and grace of God. God has not given you up or turned His heart from you. No matter what circumstance you are in, you are still loved by Him.

We can rely on God. He cares for and nurtures us in all of our situations. In this New Year, and every other moment of your life, Your hope in Him is never misplaced.

Think: Do I put my hope in God, instead of my circumstances?

Pray: “Lord, I choose to hope in You.”

Copyright © January 2017, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Abide With The King

Abide With The King By Kirk Hunt

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

Psalms 91:1–2 NKJV
Please also read Mark 4:35-41

Where you trust, you abide. Do you abide under the authority, power and influence of God Almighty? Consider how safe, secure and dependable you will be, living with God.

His safety does not mean you are free from concern. God’s security will not excuse you to make poor decisions. His dependability does not mean you go without tasks and duties.

God’s shadow is a place of light, warmth and peace. Under God’s authority, you are enabled to fully be His child. Living in His influence will free you to follow your calling in His Kingdom.

The next season of your life will come. Storms may batter your life. Do not let your concerns become fears. Make your decisions in light of His Word. Carry out your tasks and duties in the light of His promises.

Overcome your fears. Keep your faith. Abide in His shadow.

Consider carefully your opportunity. You can choose to continue or renew your relationship with the all-powerful (omnipotent), always everywhere (omnipresent), all-knowing (omniscient), God. Except for your uncertainties, what do you have to lose?

All you have to do is choose to live close to Him. Dwell near His side and heart. He has reserved space there, where He wants you to dwell.

In safety. With security. Enjoying peaceful joy.

 

Think: Do I choose to abide under the shadow of the Almighty?

Pray: “Lord, help me to choose Your influence for my life.”

 

Copyright © December 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

The King’s Purpose

The King’s Purpose By Kirk Hunt

“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.”

Matthew 1:23 NKJV

Mankind, through Adam, had caused the separation from God. As any loving Father would, God made a way to mend the breech. “God with us,” is both purpose and outcome.

Jesus willingly gave up the eternity and splendor of heaven to walk among us. Not just for proximity but to give man back what had been lost. Jesus restored direct access to, fellowship with, God.

Because of Jesus’ sacrifices, we can once against speak directly with God. Because of His dedication to God’s purpose, we have been restored as God’s sons and daughters. Jesus has restored walking with God in the garden.

Perhaps your garden is soft and grassy. It could be that your garden is hard and rocky. What is important is that you know you have a garden, and that God walks there with you.

We work, live and play in the garden where God has placed us. Consider this Christmas that God with us is truer now, than it has ever been. He came and restored the connection. Now He calls to you, “Come walk with Me.”

You are part of His plan and strategy. No matter how much you have surprised others, He saw everything about you, long ago. Take time this season to simply walk with Him. He has a purpose He wants to reveal you.

Think: God’s purpose is to walk with me. Do I walk with Him?

Pray: “Lord, as I build Your Kingdom, help me to enjoy walking with You.”

 

Copyright © December 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

The King’s Announcement

The King’s Announcement By Kirk Hunt

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Luke 2:13–14 NKJV
Please also read Luke 2:1–20

Humble shepherds witnessed a celebration by the King. Literal angels sang of the birth of Jesus, our Messiah. Scripture does not mention an angelic worship band or praise dancers, but my imagination likes to add them to the scene.

After millennia, evidence of the fulfillment of Genesis 3:15 could be seen by mere men. Since the fall in Eden, sin kept mankind from full reconciliation with God. Jesus’ birth was the (earthly) beginning of the process of restoring the fellowship on humanity with God.

And God celebrated. The long separation of man from God would soon end. Adam’s breech would be repaired by God’s own son.

Like Jesus, you were born for purpose. God has a plan for you and your life. And He will celebrate you in fulfilling the purpose He ordained for you.

The shepherds were not just passive witnesses. The found their way to Jesus and joined the angels in celebration and worship. God’s celebrations are open to any with a heart open to Him.

You too can be an active participant in God’s celebrations. Find your purpose in the Kingdom and begin fulfilling it. Join in with others who are completing the work for which they are ordained.

Follow your calling. Fulfill your purpose. You may not see or hear a choir of literal angels, but you will feel His joy in your heart, nevertheless.

Think: God celebrates the fulfillment of His purpose in my life and others.

Pray: “Lord, as I and others build Your Kingdom, I look forward to celebrating with You.”

Copyright © December 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.