Not Troubled Or Afraid

Not Troubled Or Afraid by Kirk Hunt

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

John 14:27 NKJV

Have you obeyed this command from Jesus in recent days (or months, or years)? I must confess that I have not done a good job of it, myself. God’s people should never be troubled or afraid. Jesus has left His peace and care for us.

In case you missed the memos, there is a lot of difficulty and trouble in the world these days. You should be concerned and working hard to live your life and keep a good Christian witness. Still, your concerns should not lead you to be troubled or afraid. His peace is a free gift, if you will accept it.

Peace that passes all understanding is His part, living in that peace is our part. That means we have to focus on the good and the positive and His grace. If we seek Him, His peace will follow.

The turmoil in the world will not magically lessen. The heartaches and hardships that strike us will not suddenly go away. But with God’s peace you will live in the joy and security that only He can provide. You can trade some obedience and a little work for a lot of comfort and joy.

Think: God’s peace is a free gift from Jesus, but will require work to maintain it.

Pray: “Lord, help me to be at peace in You.”

Copyright © April 2021, 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.

A Gracious Answer

A Gracious Answer by Kirk Hunt

And he said, “While the child was alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who can tell whether the Lord will be gracious to me, that the child may live?’ But now he is dead; why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.”

2 Samuel 12:22-23 NKJV
Please also read 2 Samuel 12:13-23

In grief and guilt, David cried out to God. David sought an answer of grace and mercy from God. When David received his answer from God, he responded with worship and thanksgiving.

God always answers our prayers. We do not always like the responses we receive. Still, we get our answers from a loving, gracious, sovereign God. We should always trust that God gives us the best answers for our lives.

It can be hard to welcome a response of “Endure,” in the middle of pain and suffering. When His answer leaves us with loss or anguish, do you still respond properly to God? Like David, we must cultivate a mindset of trust and confidence in God, even when we do not like the answers.

God knows our tears and heartaches. Despite the answer He gives, He is responding to us with a father’s heart. Respond with thanksgiving and trust in God who loves us better than we can love ourselves.

Think: God always answers my prayers. Do I trust Him in that answer?

Pray: “Lord, help me to respond to Your answer with trust and obedience.”

Copyright © March 2021, 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.

You Lack Nothing

You Lack Nothing by Kirk Hunt

For the Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hand. He knows your trudging through this great wilderness. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you; you have lacked nothing.” ’

Deuteronomy 2:7 NKJV

An entire generation of God’s people died, wandering in the wilderness. Still, like a tender Father with a favorite child, God cared for them the entire time. Even during their punishment, they lacked nothing.

Even at our worst, God gives His best. No matter how difficult the moment, consider that He is caring for you. You are His favorite. Even when you misbehave, He loves you more than you can know or understand.

He has always been, and always will be a holy God. Our sin and rebellion cannot always be excused through grace or dismissed by mercy. Never forget God is also a God of righteousness, judgment, and correction. Not even the most tolerant father can indulge misbehavior indefinitely.

The Hebrew people wandered the wilderness for 40 years. They were fed each day with manna. The garments they wore supernaturally lasted the entire time. Even their bodies were without wear and tear, until their mortal end.

No matter what you are going through, God is there, providing. No matter how long you have walked this path, God is near, caring for you. No matter why you are where you are, God loves you, so you lack nothing.

Think: God cares for us, so we lack nothing.

Pray: “Lord, help me to recognize and be grateful for Your care and provision.”

Copyright © March 2021, 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.

Give Thanks In Everything

Give Thanks In Everything by Kirk Hunt

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NKJV

God’s people are to give thanks in every circumstance. Not for all circumstances, but in them. There is a significant difference that makes the difference between strong Christians and other folk.

The circumstances you find yourself in have been allowed by God. Father-God is neither surprised nor unable to respond to your situation. Consider the circumstances of Job. The enemy of our souls had to ask permission before anything could happen to Job.

Why does God allow things to happen to us? Perhaps He is polishing your character. It could be he is preparing you to minister to others with intimate, inside knowledge. You may be receiving the outcome of your choices.

Like Job, we must do the best we can with what God allows into our lives. Job stayed faithful with wealth and blessings. Job stayed faithful despite loss and hardship. Good or bad, love God, not what He gives you.

Job gave thanks in his circumstances. His heart was set on God, not on what he could get from God. God’s people who master this are always full of joy and blessing, even when they are at their lowest. It may not be easy, but trust God. He has your best interests in His heart.

Think: Regardless of the upside, or downside, we are to be grateful to God.

Pray: “Lord, help me to be grateful to You, not matter what my circumstances are.”

Copyright © March 2021, 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.

How To Correct And Rebuke Yourself

How To Correct And Rebuke Yourself by Kirk Hunt

“Your own wickedness will correct you,
And your backslidings will rebuke you.
Know therefore and see that it is an evil and bitter thing
That you have forsaken the Lord your God,
And the fear of Me is not in you,”
Says the Lord God of hosts

Jeremiah 2:19 NKJV

Instead of repenting and asking God for help, ancient Israel turned (again) to idolatry and foreign alliances. Their sin made them weaker. Their errors only served to speed up and intensify their correction and rebuke. The nation would be exiled in Babylon.

Israel came to understand, as early as their forced march to captivity, how choosing sin led to their downfall. Internal error, not external threats, led to their exile. Please know that self-correction and self-rebuke applies to whole nations as much as individual men and women.

Like the Prodigal Son, we come to ourselves in a humiliating circumstance (pig pen) of our own making. Our rebellion, lust and greed always leads us to a place of debasement away from God’s perfect will. Prayerfully, in that place of correction and rebuke, we turn back to Father-God. Know that God always loves us, despite our error and in the midst of our sin. Our chosen sin causes our separation, not His Heart.

God did not allow the Babylonians to exterminate Israel. In fact, God commanded His people to live, grow and increase during the Babylonian Captivity. Father-God loves you, even now. Allow the correction and rebuke of your circumstance to drive your heart back to Him in repentance.

Think: My self-inflicted correction and rebuke is an opportunity to repent.

Pray: “Lord, help me to repent and return to You.”

Copyright © February 2021, 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.

Father-God’s Will

Father-God’s Will By Kirk Hunt

Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.

Matthew 10: 29 NKJV

Poppa made me get in the truck and go to work with him.  Did I appreciate learning a trade and work ethic?  Not at the time.  In retrospect, I am thankful Poppa compelled me.  Consider now the Father’s will.

We confuse God’s best path for us with pleasant things and placid events.  We act as if we think God only loves us when we lounge on flowery beds of ease and comfort.  Instead, He loves us most when He allows us to reach our limits in desperation and distress.  It is in the place of our extremes that we can best hear and respond to His voice.

He is omniscient.  He sees all of our situation, no matter where we are.  He is omnipotent.  No matter how far we are past our limits, He is well within His power.  He is omnipresent.  You cannot go where He is not or even get there before Him.

No matter how hard and difficult your circumstances, God is right there with you.  He is caring for you, despite your pain.  His strength carries you no matter how weak you feel.  His grace comforts you, no matter how many tears you cry.

The skills Poppa taught me have carried through my life.  I still do not completely understand all of God’s will for my life.  All I know is that I worth more than many sparrows (Matthew 10:31).

Think:        One day I will understand God’s will for my life.  Until then I will be obedient.

Pray:           “Lord, help me to follow Your will for my life, regardless of how I feel now.”

 

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.

Poppa’s Hands

Poppa’s Hands By Kirk Hunt

And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.   My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.

John 10:28–29 NKJV

The scene plays in my mind with thoughts of peace, safety and golden warmth.  I was 4, maybe 5 years old.  I sat on the front pew of Prayer Temple (now Nash Temple) and examined Poppa’s hands with rapt fascination.  To my innocent young eyes his hands seemed without limit and without equal.  50 years later, my opinion is better informed, but no less convinced.

Even then his hands were scarred and rough from years of hard labor.  His hands were strong from pulling electrical cable or cutting wires.  In later years I would watch him switch seamlessly from casual displays of raw strength to deft demonstrations of control and finesse. 

Despite how gnarled and unattractive they appeared, Poppa’s hands were a blessing of rare quality and strength.  Poppa ministered to, provided for and gave protection to his family and anyone who sought his help.  His hands were instruments of deliverance and provision.

Consider now the hands of Father-God.  God’s hands are omnipresent, omnipotent, guided by his omniscience and motivated by His bottomless love for you.  His hands are a place of peace, safety and warmth for every soul that will seek Him.  And even for some souls who flee Him.

I sit in Father-God’s hands.  It is a place of peace safety and golden warmth.  With each passing day, my opinion is better informed and more convinced of His love and provision for me.

 

Think:        The best place to be is in the hands of Father-God. 

Pray:           “Lord, guide me every day with Your loving hands.”

 

 

Copyright © June 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.

Troubled Yet Strong

Troubled Yet Strong By Kirk Hunt

Your words have upheld him who was stumbling,
And you have strengthened the feeble knees;
But now it comes upon you, and you are weary;
It touches you, and you are troubled.

Job 4:4–5 NKJV

It is easy, from the comfort of your living room couch, to complain about what is or is not happening on the field of play.  It is different when you are the one troubled by difficult circumstances, coworker miscues and unfair criticism.  Stay strong, no matter how much this life batters you, and false-friends or intractable enemies bad-mouth you.

In the 4th chapter of Job, Eliphaz criticizes Job.  Eliphaz does not complain that Job’s prior support of others was poor or incorrect.  Instead, he condemns Job for experiencing grief at the loss of his children, misery in the midst of his illness and distress in the middle of devastating losses.  “Thanks for the support, Eliphaz.”

I pray you have a long and prosperous life building God’s Kingdom.  Still, no matter how clean your living, or wise your conduct, difficulties will come to your doorstep.  Still, through your strength in God, you can live through your troubles and emerge victorious.

Job did not dance and sing through his sorrows and distresses.  His first and second responses were to turn to God and continue to trust Him.  Job’s trust in God and grounding in His righteousness gave him the strength he needed. 

What God did for Job, He will do for you.  Despite your troubles, are you strong enough to rely on God?  I pray so.

Think:        Despite my difficulties I can live in victory through the strength of God.

Pray:           “Lord, help me to be strong in You, despite my troubles.”

 

Copyright © February 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.

New Creature

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New Creature by Kirk Hunt

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV

 

Welcome to a new year.  Last year had its challenges, losses and wins, but it is past now.  Ready or not, you are in this new year.

 

The year is not the only thing that is new.  If you are a follower of Christ Jesus, you are new also.  You are being transformed in His image.

 

The old you had advantages, but the new you is better.  The new you looks more like Him.  This year’s you acts more like Christ.

 

Each round of Bible study gives you greater understanding.  Each day of fasting gives you greater strength in Him.  Each prayer takes you closer to His mind.

 

The new you has a new year, full of new opportunities to build His Kingdom.  All it takes is the courage and obedience to exercise yourself.  You can do it, since His power is working in you.

 

The previous versions of you were good but today you are better.  He has called you to build His Kingdom, using your new abilities, skills and insight.  Follow your calling, knowing that you are better than ever.

 

Think:            Do my actions reflect that fact that I am a new creation?

Pray:              “Lord, help me to follow my calling and mission in new ways.”

 

 

Copyright © January 2013, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of https://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.

The Preparation Of A Kiss

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“The Preparation Of A Kiss” by Kirk Hunt

 

And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. (Luke 15:20 KJV)

Luke 15:20 KJV

He cringed when he saw his father running full-out toward him. As the older man came to a stop, huffing and puffing, he tried to start his speech. His father stopped him with a kiss.

 

Despite the stench of the pig-sty. On top of the putrid smell of disobedience. Without regard to who saw, or what they thought.

 

The father’s love had never wavered. His hope and expectation had yearned toward this day. All that was left was a way to express, joy, love and unrestrained welcome in one succinct act.

 

Perhaps the boy expected rebuke and recrimination. Instead, he received acceptance and affirmation. The joy of restoration outweighed every other consideration or concern.

 

Father-God’s love for you has never wavered. His divine providence and omnipotent preparation has worked for the day that you would return to Him. And he has joy, love and unrestrained welcome stored up just for you.

 

It does not matter what has gone before. His heart is ready to receive you. All you have to do is turn toward Him. He has a kiss for you.

 

 

Think: Father-God yearns to kiss me.

Pray: “Lord, remind me that You love me, no matter what.

Copyright © November 2011, Kirk Hunt

When It Is Still Raining

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“When It Is Still Raining” by Kirk Hunt

For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

2 Corinthians 12:8 – 9 KJV

Video: Praise You In This Storm

 

The good news is that God always answers prayer. The bad news is that God’s answer is not always “yes.” “No” is an answer, like it or not.

 

There is no Scriptural description of Paul’s “thorn in the flesh.” Whatever his issue, Paul petitions God three times for relief or removal. God answers Paul with a clear “no.” Paul says “amen,” but it is still “raining” in his life.

 

We do not always understand God’s actions, but we always understand His faithfulness. Pain and sorrow invade the lives of Christians, but His love is always with us. Even in the low, dark places of our lives, God’s high power shines brightly in us, and through us.

 

Even in the pelting rain of your life, God loves you. His power in you is greater than anything you face. His grace is sufficient, strong enough, to carry you through whatever you face.

 

Think: God’s grace and love for me are constant and faithful.

 

Pray: “Lord, help me to love and trust You, no matter Your answer.”

 

Copyright © September 2011, Kirk Hunt

Some Dreams Get New Life

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“Some Dreams Get New Life” by Kirk Hunt

 

When she reached the man of God at the mountain, she took hold of his feet. Gehazi came over to push her away, but the man of God said, “Leave her alone! She is in bitter distress, but the LORD has hidden it from me and has not told me why.” “Did I ask you for a son, my lord?” she said. “Didn’t I tell you, ‘Don’t raise my hopes’?”

2 Kings 4:27-28 NIV

 

At daybreak, the Shunammite woman watched her little boy run and play. At noon, her dream lay cold and stiffening in an upstairs bedroom. The bitter reality of her situation called for action.

 

Common wisdom would call for a mortician. Instead, she sent for a driver. She put on her traveling clothes and her “game face.” She had work to do.

 

The facts and data said, “The dream is over.” Faith and hope said, “It shall be well.” To the driver, she said, “Go hard and fast.”

 

Sometimes, in the rough and tumble of life, a dream dies. Bitter distress is the normal reaction to such an event. As God’s people, we can respond with faith and hope. If God can bring a dream to life, He can give it new life.

 

At evening, the Shunammite’s little boy once again ran and played. Her faith had brought new life to her dream. What will your faith bring (back) to life?

 

Think: God gives life to our dreams. Sometimes, twice.

 

Pray: “Father-God, life and power are in, and with, You.”

 

 

Copyright © June 2011, Kirk Hunt