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Wednesday, October 17, 2007
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"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" (2 Corinthians 5:17)
David Fisher is a Canadian friend of ours who also writes messages over the internet and has for many years had a powerful ministry of encouragement through writing notes and letters. He told me about a typo he once made in a newsletter: "I wrote of the many 'livers' that have been changed through our letter-writing ministry. I didn't realize that I was into the organ transplant business!" Isn't it amazing how one letter of the alphabet can change the meaning so much. Of course he meant to spell the word, "lives."
Well that brings to mind Bruce and Cindy Jack, long-time friends from our church in northern PA. Bruce is a man of vibrant faith and high energy but his life changed several years ago when he went through two liver transplants. We just got a good report that he is doing well physically and recent medical tests have been excellent. He may be the only person we know who has in reality "changed livers." But thankfully we know many people who have experienced changed lives!
Lives are changed as the power of God uses a multitude of supernatural and human means. In fact generally we all see the human cooperation with God as we consider changes in our own lives. The Apostle Paul had a testimony of direct intervention from God when he was converted on the road to Damascus. However, from the very beginning God used His people to affect change in Saul beginning with Ananias, Barnabas and many others, including the unnamed "ropeholders" mentioned in Acts 9:25.
As we consider our own testimony, all of us can see the cooperative efforts of Christ's followers at work in our pre-conversion, conversion and post-conversion discipling growth. Although we recognize the actual change is a result of Christ's work, we see that God also uses many others. Now, as His followers, we are all called to cooperate in God's life-changing power in the lives of others.
The daily Scripture text is one many of you have memorized. Thank God for His change in our lives and for the many others he uses to affect this change. Now we all have a call to cooperate with God in seeing His change affect others. Let us be faithful!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, I thank You for the ropeholders in my faith journey; intercessors who uphold me in prayer when I am doing battle with the enemy; messengers whose words of support brighten my darkened path and helpers who come to my side when I am in need of their assistance. May I also be faithful to do my part in reaching out to others who are in need of my prayers, my encouragement, or my assistance. The real test of love was proven as John tells us in his first epistle, "This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers (3:16)" This seems like an impossible test of genuine Christian love, but when I live in the light of eternity I am able to make the ultimate sacrifice if this is required of me. Even as my life has been changed I want to see those now living in darkness turn to Jesus, the Bright and Morning Star, who continues to change lives. Amen.
Stephen's note: Today is my folk's 63rd wedding anniversary. Although they are both with the Lord I am thankful for their impact upon my life. They celebrated their 53rd anniversary before my father went to be with the Lord.
Doris High's photo blog
David Fisher's encouragement blog
Here is a testimony of one of our close friends who attends the church we pastored in New England. Yvette is an example of the way God continues to change lives. Now she is being used to reach out to others who struggle and need God's changing power in their lives.
Our current humor/satire blog entry was prompted by a yellow page ad we read while looking for a church to attend in Williamsburg Virginia last weekend. The main features expected to draw visitors to a particular church based on the large display ad were "casual clothing and Starbucks coffee". This post is mostly satire but actually it could be true! Read the article here.
Today's suggested music:
"Change My Heart O God" (Audio)
"How Great Is Our God" (Audio)
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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.
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