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Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Mom Weber with her great grandson Noah
My late Mom reading to her youngest great grandson Noah

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"He's Still Working On Me!"

"Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6).

This last Sunday I had the opportunity to preach at our "home" congregation, the church we started attending when we moved to Pennsylvania from New England nearly six years ago.  Since we have been serving in interim pastoral roles for over a year now we do not see these friends regularly and it was a joy to share God's Word with them.

One of our friends was blessed with a new granddaughter this last year, their first grand-child.  As I stood at the pulpit I looked out to one of the rows toward the front and saw a great sight; four generations attending church together! Grandma holding the granddaughter with Grandpa beside her. His widowed mother sat beside him along with their son and his wife in the row directly behind.

Part of my sermon was a call to "press on" and continue to grow and develop in our walk with the Lord in this New Year. As I looked at this family picture I recalled a song from many years ago that in my favorite version presents three generations; a child, his dad and his grandpa in successive verses declaring that "He's still working on me."

During our entire tenure of ministry service in New England through the nineties, Boston was enduring the largest public works project in history in what most called, "The Big Dig."  Essentially they rerouted a major interstate highway under the historic portion of the city for several miles.  During construction it resulted in excessive expense, major traffic jams, and rerouting. I recall a large sign along I-93 during the construction period that stated, "Rome wasn't built in a day. If it were we would have hired their contractor."

Now here's a spiritual lesson. Obviously our divine Contractor can build as fast as He wants. After all, the Creation account is completed over a mere six day period. But spiritual growth is in increments over the course of our entire life.  There are times when these increments are noticeable and dramatic, particularly in our early days in the faith.  There are other times when they may be practically imperceptible and we may wonder whether the Master Contractor is still at work.  

We can be sure, based upon the trustworthiness of God's Word and His character, that He is continually at work.  In our daily text Paul expresses confidence that the One who began the good work in the lives of the Philippian believers (and each one of us who has placed our faith in Christ) will be faithful to perform or complete it until the day of His return.  The Greek word for "complete" means to "fulfill completely."  Praise God – He doesn't do a half-hearted, incompetent or incomplete work!

Today and this New Year hold tight to His loving grip and be confident that He's still at work.  He will not abandon You but will bring to completion His work in your life!

He's still working on me
To make me what I ought to be
It took Him just a day to make the moon and the stars,
The sun up above and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be.  He's still working on me.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer:  Father, You began a good work in me the moment of my conception when You created me in Your own image. Incredibly, You chose to reflect Your divine Being through my thoughts, attitudes, and actions though I am among "frail children of dust, and feeble as frail" I place my trust in You and have found that You never fail.  You never give up or abandon the work You started in my life but Your tender mercies and divine plan continue to break me, mold me, and shape me into Your image. The process will not be completed until the day You send Christ to come for us. Thank You, Father, for being my Maker, Defender, Redeemer and my Friend.  Amen.

(Portion of Prayer inspired by the hymn, "O Worship the King")

Brooksyne's Note:  I am so grateful that I am a fourth generation believer.  This tremendous blessing especially comes to mind each Father's Day as it is my father's side who has walked in the light of Christ since the 1800's.  Sadly, not all of my siblings have chosen to follow the Lord, so I join with many of our readers today in continuing to pray for those in our family who still walk in darkness.  It is so very difficult to see those we love so dearly choose another path, but we press on in prayer believing God to reveal Himself to our loved ones and turn their hearts toward Him.  Perhaps 2007 will be the year!

Here's a child's version of the song referred to in today's message. I was unable to find a multi- generational version but I am hopeful that when the baby is old enough that the family mentioned in today's message will do it!  (At least I suggested it to them.)

Another song that we enjoy uses the daily text as a basis. It's titled "He Who Began A Good Work In You" and here's an audio version from a local church choir.  An instrumental version of this song is also used as the background music in today's podcast.

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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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