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Monday, September 4. 2006

(An update about our daughter Ester follows this message.)

Photo of our cat Dottie in basket
Our cat Dottie was sure glad to see us when we got home!
This morning she is relaxing in our tomato basket.
"Spiritual Reunions"

"It gave me great joy to have some brothers come and tell about your faithfulness to the truth and how you continue to walk in the truth" (3 John 1:3).

Many of us have had family reunions sometime this summer when we get together with members of our extended family. This summer my family gathered in Wisconsin with my one remaining aunt and uncle along with many cousins on my Mom's side.  We really had a great time together.

But I also enjoy spiritual family reunions. Have you been to one of these? We may call them homecomings; those times we gather with those we associated with in the past.  Due to relocations and other factors we may no longer regularly see them.  This last week Rick Masciantonio, a long-time friend along with his wife, Liz and their son, came to see Ester in the hospital.  Their son, Richard, is attending his first year at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, following in the footsteps of his mother who is a pharmacist.

We also met many of our spiritual relatives as I returned to speak at the church I had pastored for 7 ½ years in New England.  Next month we will meet with believers in north central Pennsylvania in the church I pastored prior to that. 

What a tremendous blessing to see these folks continuing on in their walk with Christ.  There is no material or physical blessing that brings greater joy than seeing our loved ones walking steadfastly in the ways of the Lord.

Perhaps today you would like to consider people like this in your life.  It's so important to keep in touch. Certainly we have the added blessing of using technology today which was unavailable to the generations before us. 

The apostle John had received some news that brought him "great joy."  He had received a report concerning a dear friend named Gaius indicating that Gaius had been faithful to the truth and was continuing to walk in the truth.  I sure like reports like that don't you?  They really do bring such great joy.

Today the word of encouragement is the great blessing that we can receive and that we can be as we continue to walk in the truth as part of the great company of the redeemed.  Are you receiving that blessing today from someone?  Are you being that blessing?  I thank God for spiritual reunions and the foretaste of the greatest one yet to come in heaven as we await the blessed return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen C. Weber

Daily Prayer: Jesus, how good it is to walk in the truth with my brothers and sisters! Though time and distance may separate us, our hearts are joined spiritually.   Thank You for those who spur me on in having a close walk with You, Jesus, and performing good works in Your name.  Amen.

Brooksyne's Update on Ester: How good it is to be home again.  Ester was discharged in the early afternoon yesterday, three days after doctors estimated, so we immediately headed for home and arrived about midnight!  She is continuing to recover but is still dealing with too much fluid on her right lung, which is why she was not discharged earlier.  Thankfully she made enough improvement that the doctors discharged her with the condition that she will be followed up tomorrow (Tuesday) at Hershey Medical Center.  We're grateful that we live so close to a good hospital where she has received excellent care over the past five years. 

Ester slept all night without awakening and so did we!  Now today we play catch-up with unpacking, washing and cleaning up a storm damaged yard and the vegetable and flower gardens while we were gone! A family who's been faithful readers of the Daily Encouragement watched over our house and cared for our pets while we were gone – what a tremendous blessing!!  As I conclude this personal note I see our resident goldfinch has made his way to the feeder.  It's almost empty, so I'm glad we've arrived in time to refill the thistle feeder.  Ahhh, it's sure good to be home!!!

Last night we were greeted by two home-made signs.  One was from our Amish neighbors (pictured) and the other by our animal care takers.  Now, that really warmed our hearts!!

Photo of "Overcomer" sign

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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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