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.

Be No More

Be No More by Kirk Hunt

Wait on the Lord,
And keep His way,
And He shall exalt you to inherit the land;
When the wicked are cut off, you shall see it.

I have seen the wicked in great power,
And spreading himself like a native green tree.

Yet he passed away, and behold, he was no more;
Indeed I sought him, but he could not be found.

Psalms 37:34-36 NKJV

It sometimes seems that nothing can touch or impact the wicked. Do not be fooled, God’s justice and judgment cannot be delayed forever. The villains will (suddenly) be no more.

I confess, my heart and spirit too often look on with frustration and aggravation. The wicked and unrighteous seem to enjoy wealth and ease with impunity. It seems, to my natural eyes, that the villains are having a good time and winning easily.

Of course, I have to stop and see the situation with spiritual eyes. God’s faithful people possess now, and will inherit, good things and blessed circumstances. No matter how large wicked men and women live, they will disappear with hardly a trace.

My job is to carefully work out my soul’s salvation. If I can help anyone else reach Jesus, I am blessed in great measure. In the meanwhile, I do not have the luxury of worrying, from a distance, about the spiritual lives of other men and women.

Scripture promises we will all reap what we sow. The wicked will get their harvest, sooner or later. In the meanwhile, I am sowing as much good for His Kingdom as I can.

Think: No matter what they do, I must remain a faithful follower of Jesus Christ.

Pray: “Lord, help me keep my eyes on 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.

Has Not Kissed Baal

Has Not Kissed Baal by Kirk Hunt

“Yet I have reserved seven thousand in Israel, all whose knees have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.”

1 Kings 19:18 NKJV

Elijah stood alone on the mountain, speaking with God. Despite the recent victory over the cult of Baal, God’s faithful prophet felt alone and vulnerable. God points out, in plain simplicity, that thousands have not given into idol worship or kissed Baal.

You are never the only one to remain faithful to God. You have brothers and sisters who never once give and bow their knee. God’s true people never become intimate with and accepting of evil. No matter how outnumbered or alone you feel.

Elijah watched God’s fire fall from heaven at his own prayer. God’s prophet, with a little help, personally executed Baal’s false prophets. Still, Elijah experienced a severe crisis and fled into the desert, convinced he alone served God.

Elijah came to understand that had never been alone. By himself, perhaps. Alone in the true worship of God? Never.

No matter what is going on around you, you are part of God’s remnant. You are part of the courageous and faithful few who refuse to compromise with evil and immorality.

You have not bent your knee in compromise. You have not kissed false worship or belief. Neither have they.

Continue to serve God in true and pure faith. You may have to stand by yourself but you never stand alone. Pray in pure devotion and watch God’s fire fall in your circumstances.

Think: Even when I am by myself, I am never alone among God’s faithful people.

Pray: “Lord, help me to remain faithful even when I feel alone.”

 

Copyright © August 2019, 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.

Because He Was Faithful

Because He Was Faithful by Kirk Hunt

So the governors and satraps sought to find some charge against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find no charge or fault, because he was faithful; nor was there any error or fault found in him.

Daniel 6:4 NKJV
Please also read Daniel 6:1–24

The conspirators spent time, money and effort, but came up empty. Daniel continued to conduct his affairs in a carefree manner, with a joyous spirit. The shadowy and sinister men who sought his downfall were defeated by his clean record. When you are righteous and faithful, you are protected beyond reasonable measure.

Scripture says Daniel (and his friends) were smart, wise and clever. Clearly, Daniel knew the honest play is always the smartest play. A long record of clean and honest work is its own protection.

Do not confuse Daniel’s clean record with a lack of hard work. It takes longer and costs more to do it right the first time. But when you are done, there is nothing to do but the next task. It is difficult to threaten an honest man or woman with the honest facts and figures.

Daniel’s record, transcripts and witnesses told a consistent story of fair dealing and honest work. The men who wanted to bring him down had to look for a different path. How you do the work is just as important as the outcome.

How do you do what you do? Are you faithful to God through your work? Do you play fair and straight, or will there be a problem when we read your transcripts or call the witnesses?

Think: A righteous, faithful lifestyle is its own protection.

Pray: “Lord, help me to be Your righteous and faithful servant before all men and women.”

 

Copyright © April 2019, 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.

Naaman The Honorable

Naaman The Honorable by Kirk Hunt

Now Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Syria, was a great and honorable man in the eyes of his master, because by him the Lord had given victory to Syria. He was also a mighty man of valor, but a leper.

2 Kings 5:1 NKJV

Despite being a general in the army of the pagan Syrians, Naaman was an instrument of God’s will. Being a great and honorable man (or woman) does not mean you are sinless. Leprosy, long a symbol or analogy of sin in human lives, changed the viewpoint of others. Naaman’s grateful king (historically, Ben-Hadad II) saw him less as a national hero and more as a dangerous threat to his own health and wellbeing.

Even today, Naaman’s leprosy can serve as an object lesson: Being good and moral is not enough. Christians, God’s people, must live more than clean lives. We must live separate from the sin that can so easily taint and contaminate our lives.

Despite all of his achievements and benefits to the Syrian King and nation, Naaman lived as a separated pariah. Even his wife would have shunned his immediate presence, or merest touch. Naaman’s bacterial infection defined him more than his courage, valor or noble character.

The sin in your life defines you more than your generosity, virtue or clean living. Some souls who see your taint and contamination will shun you as one of the unredeemed. Other souls will seek to drag you further into the worst of sinful living.

Leprosy, the disease, can be cured. Sin, the corruption of your soul, can be cleansed and avoided through the salvation of Jesus Christ. I pray you are honorable, but know it is more important to be sinless.

Think: Honorable is good. Sinless is better.

Pray: “Lord, help me to live sinlessly through Your Holy Spirit and power.”

 

Copyright © February 2019, 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.

Who Have You Received?

Who Have You Received? by Kirk Hunt

Then Paul dwelt two whole years in his own rented house, and received all who came to him, preaching the kingdom of God and teaching the things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ with all confidence, no one forbidding him.

Acts 28:30-31 NKJV

Chained to a Roman soldier, Paul received everyone who came to him. The prisoner freely taught and preached about Jesus Christ. For two years, handcuffed to his captors, Paul repeated the crime that brought him to trial in Rome.

It took courage to visit Paul in Nero’s Rome. Christians were already under suspicion and discrimination. Still, the opportunity to learn of Jesus, directly from Paul, brought men and women to his door.

Paul welcomed his guests, then generously gave them his richest gift: Jesus Christ. In the face of political, social and religious (Pagans or Jews) opposition, Paul insisted on sharing his knowledge of the Gospel. Whether with those in the room, or with saints around the known world, Paul spoke God’s truth to all who could hear.

Who do you receive? What do you give them? Why should they want what you give?

Under the watching eyes and listening ears of the elite Praetorian Guard, Paul taught the Gospel to all who asked. The Apostle used his adverse circumstances to build the Kingdom. Can you do the same?

Who is at your door? What do you give them? Even a prisoner can be a generous host, if they have something of value to give. What is more valuable than the Gospel?

Think: Who have you received? What have they received from you?

Pray: “Lord, help me to generously receive then give You to all who come to me.”

 

Copyright © February 2019, 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.

Who Are Gathered With You?

Who Are Gathered With You? by Kirk Hunt

David therefore departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam. So when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. And everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him. So he became captain over them. And there were about four hundred men with him.

2 Samuel 22:1-2 NKJV

King Saul issued a death warrant for his loyal and valiant son-in-law, David. Unjustly hunted and cruelly hounded, David found refuge in the cave of Adullam. There, at his lowest point, losers, deadbeats and whiners gathered with David.

David could have easily become a brigand and villain, leading a band of cutthroats. Instead he transformed himself into a valiant king-like leader. The crybabies and snotnoses who gathered with him? They became an elite fighting force who championed the defenseless.

You always have a choice. There is the easy way or the right way. You can choose to walk upward in righteousness or slide downward in villainy. It is just that easy.

Insist that the people who gather around you have a simple choice: 1) Get with your program or 2) leave. Keep their immediate decision clear and simple.

It takes courage, fortitude and intention to choose righteousness. There will be confrontations and conflicts, but insist that anyone who stays with you does the same. No one said it would be easy.

Who is gathered with you? You can help them change their story. Make sure you choose the right story to tell with your life and theirs.

Think: Who is gathered with me and why do they stay?

Pray: “Lord, help me and those gathered with me to choose Your righteousness.”

 

Copyright © February 2019, 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.

Where Are You Stationed?

Where Are You Stationed? by Kirk Hunt

And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. The Philistines had gathered together into a troop where there was a piece of ground full of lentils. So the people fled from the Philistines. But he stationed himself in the middle of the field, defended it, and killed the Philistines. So the Lord brought about a great victory.

2 Samuel 23:11-12 NKJV

Shammah is listed in Scripture as one of David’s “mighty men”. His greatest deed? Alone and abandoned, Shammah stood and fought while others ran. He stationed himself in a patch of beans and defended them.

Shammah’s duty was made harder, and riskier, because others failed in their duty to their nation and God. Still, he stood his ground and fought. Despite his personal courage and skillfulness, Scripture is clear that Shammah did not bring about success. God’s faithfulness and power bought and brought victory.

What has God assigned you? Steel your heart and determination, even if it seems you are defending something of low value. Courageously hold your ground against greater numbers and firepower, no matter how alone you are. Mighty men and women are determined by faithful courage and determined hearts.

Military last stands tends to favor the attackers and are universally costly to the defenders. Determine now that you will do your part, confident that Father-God will do His. Despite your personal courage and skill, victory will come through God’s faithfulness and power.

Think: Do your part to bring about victory.

Pray: “Lord, help me to fulfill your assignment to me, regardless of what others do.”

Copyright © February 2019, 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.

Seeking Something Better

Seeking Something Better by Kirk Hunt

These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

Hebrews 11:39–40 NIV

Despite (partial) victories (such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965) Dr. King continued the work of freeing all of America’s citizens from injustice and discrimination. His earthly reward for seeking something better for America? An assassin’s bullet.

Scripture summarizes the suffering and victories of Old Testament Prophets and Heroes in Hebrews 11. Those men and women did not live to see God’s promises completed, but they did their part to fulfill their callings. Usually, at great personal cost or their very lives.

Hebrews 11 rehearses the faithfulness and endurance of Old Testament saints. They fulfilled their calling and purpose, despite not seeing their victory in complete fullness. Hebrews 12 exhorts New Testament saints to be just as faithful and enduring.

Christians of the Roman world often suffered and died but they eventually converted polytheistic pagans into devout Christians. With the continuing advantage of Jesus and the Holy Spirit, we should do as much. Echoing the faith and diligence of Old and New Testament saints, our faithfulness will require that we seek something better, regardless of the personal cost.

Seek something better, no matter who is bother or how they object. Your prize for delivering freedom or salvation will be God’s eternal approval. Try not to mind any short term inconveniences or even living to see it completely fulfilled.

Think: Do your part whether or not you see the final victory.

Pray: “Lord, help me to fulfill my calling from you, no matter how others object.”

 

Copyright © January 2019, 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.