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Thursday, August 31, 2006

D.L. Moody plaque

"Our Fundamental Task"

"However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me--the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace" (Acts 20:24).

Even though it's smack in the middle of Boston's historical tourist area I doubt if very many tourists pay much attention to it.  A small bronze plaque on an old building on Court Street marks the spot where on April 21, 1855 Dwight Lyman Moody was "converted to God."

During a Sunday School lesson he had showed spiritual interest by asking his teacher, Mr. Edward Kimball, the quaint question, "That Moses was what you call a pretty smart man, wasn't he?" This prompted the earnest teacher to visit him at his place of business, a shoe store where he worked for his uncle.  Mr. Kimball laid his hand on the boy's shoulder and spoke a few kind words to him. Then he asked him the direct question, "Will you not give your heart to Jesus?" The inquiry pierced him to the heart. He sought and found Jesus as his Saviour, and resolved to consecrate himself to the service of his God. He went on to have a tremendous ministry for Christ through the rest of his earthly life.

Fundamentally God has called each believer to leave a signature for Jesus Christ.  This signature is essentially our influence on the world around us.  This signature may be made while serving in the office of a pastor or other form of Christian ministry, but it is the call of every true believer on earth until they are called home to heaven.  The Apostle Paul's ministry was multi-faceted.  He ministered one on one, to small groups and to larger crowds.  He ministered in both speaking and writing.  His life's mission is summed up in the powerful phrase in the daily text, "the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace". 

Like the Apostle Paul, I want to have a lifelong commitment to the great task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.  But each day I would like to ask myself a question and I encourage you to do the same.  What have I done today to influence the world for Christ in evangelism and to build up the body of Christ?  That is our fundamental task.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen C. Weber

Daily Prayer: Lord help us to stay faithful to your call! Amen.
Personal note: As regular readers of this series know, our daughter Ester had heart surgery this last Tuesday at Children's Hospital in Boston.  She continues to recover but now she has a cough and does not have her appetite back. We had hoped to return to Pennsylvania today but as of my morning call to Brooksyne, who stayed at the hospital with her last night, now we are not so sure.

Bermuda friends
As I was preparing this message a young mother came into the area I was typing. She is here from Bermuda, along with her son who in the same hospital as Ester.  I had visited him and he deals with a severe affliction, Spina Bifida, resulting in significant physical challenges.  But in spite of this he expresses faith in the Lord to see him through and has a call to be a minister of the Gospel. His mother loves her son very much and wants to see the best for him.  We prayed together as she faces some hard challenges in the days ahead.  Perhaps some of our daily encouragement readers will also pray for this dedicated young mother and her son. (She gave me permission to share this photo, information and prayer request.)

Boston area photos

I wonder as a "Where's Elmo?" type exercise if those familiar with the Boson area want to guess where these photos were taken?

Sarah and Nicole
Yesterday Ester had several groups of visitors. Two of her older friends who are now in college stopped by. They both are serving the Lord, with one planning on being a missionary. I was there Pastor when they were little.  I asked them if they remembered any of my sermons and one immediately said the lettuce sermon when I began the message by holding up a head of lettuce. Any ideas as to what that sermon was all about? Following their visit we drove around the Boston area for awhile and then they dropped me off downtown near Park Street Church and the Common. I walked all the way back to the Longwood hospital area.

Boston University

City Cow
We are not staying here!

Phillips Brooks
"O Little Town of Bethlehem"

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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. Used by permission; 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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