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Wednesday, August 1, 2012
An Amish farm here in Lancaster County. We especially like the white picket fence and lots of colorful flowers. Doris High shares this on her photo blog.
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"Nearing Life's Finish Line"
"I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end He will stand" (Job 19:25). "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith" (2 Timothy 4:7)
Yesterday a friend sent me an autographed copy of "The Courage To Run" by Jim Ryun. It's subtitle is "Inspiration for running the race of your life". Jim Ryun broke the world record for the mile and was an Olympic medalist when I was a young man and serious about running. The Olympics are now in the news and many events have a finish line.
Today let us consider a finish line we all have in common; life's finish line.
One of the benefits personally in preparing these daily messages is that, due to the personal way we write, they also serve as a journal. Twelve years ago today I was in Independence, Missouri with my widowed mom. At that time we were moving her out of the home where I had spent my high school years, where she and Dad had lived in for nearly thirty years.
We were there that day to finish that part of her life. We had an auction to dispose of most of hers and Dad's earthly possessions. (My dad had died two years earlier.) Her phone practically rang off the hook with calls from friends she'd made for the nearly 60 years she'd lived in the Kansas City area. Some didn't want her to leave, others knew it was best for her. We walked through the house and shared long held memories. The next day we went down to tiny Harwood, Missouri to see her childhood home and the cemetery where my dad's ashes are buried as well as her parents.
At that time Mom was near her finish line. She lived another five years with us before she was called home to be with the Lord and crossed the final finish line.
Where are you in regard to life's finish line? Truth be told none us really know. I realize I'm well beyond the halfway point in a normal life span but the finish line is not always crossed due to old age.
Job epitomizes the life of suffering. In the midst of it he proclaims one of the greatest statements of faith in the entire Bible. "I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end He will stand". Today I am especially moved by the phrase, "in the end".
Life has its setbacks, hurts and disappointments. We've all had some. And some of you are in the very midst of them today. The finish line is ahead. Hold onto faith in the ever-living Redeemer. In the end you will stand with Him at the finish line!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, there are many goals, deadlines, and expectations we meet as we tarry here below. But there's one goal yet unmet that will carry us to the very end of our lives here, and that's to cross over the finish line that transports us from our temporal dwelling to our place of eternal rest. Rest from all that troubles us, a place where we will no longer taste of death, sickness, evil or sorrow. But until then we rejoice in knowing that Christ our Redeemer lives. He walks with us through every trial, every heartache, and every temptation that our enemy, the devil, hurls at us. We are victors through Christ Jesus our Lord in whose name we pray. Amen.
Yesterday we saw these kittens that we first photographed several weeks ago peeking out a barn loft. They were very curious about some dog supplies we dropped off with our two dogs who are going to the farm for a few days. Though our cat is 11 years old she still gets excited, just like the kittens, about anything new I put in her living area.
(BTW the kitties are still available.)
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resource
"The Race Is On" Video A very early Michael W. Smith song (1983)
"It Will Be Worth It All" Video (Musicians not identified)
"Find Us Faithful" Video Steve Green
Two books come to mind that we would recommend in regard to today's topic:
"Nearing Home" by Billy Graham
"Though None Go With Me" by Jerry Jenkins A novel which chronicles the life of its main character from childhood to old age. It packs an extremely powerful finish and has a powerful life lesson. It has been made into a Hallmark movie, although in our view the book has a stronger witness for Christ.
See here for more photos of an Amish farm taken by Doris High.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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