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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

 Photo of tree-lined lane
This beautiful tree-lined drive leading to an old farmouse is just around the corner.
The splattering fall colors of foliage seem so inviting for a stroll down the country lane!

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"Go Light Your World!"
"For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord.  Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them" (Ephesians 5:8-11).
We had some interesting ministry experiences when we lived in New England. Brooksyne was teaching a group of children about this time of year in 1999 and a little girl who was visiting her class proudly declared that her aunt was a witch.  My wife sought to deal with the situation with sensitivity since the "witch" was a family member. And yet she didn't want to miss an opportunity God provided for her to give proper instruction to this impressionable child.  Appealing to the Holy Spirit to help her "speak the truth in love" she disclosed the Biblical teaching on this subject. Interestingly, the little girl was insistent that her aunt was a "good" witch.
Such are the fruits of the Biblical illiteracy and moral confusion that abounds in our land with children and adults.  I find it astounding how the celebration of Halloween has grown in my lifetime and by some accounts is second only to Christmas for retail sales.  Some yards have eerie displays rivaling in magnitude to those at Christmas time.
Jon Eisenberg is a friend of mine who serves in campus ministry here in South Central Pennsylvania with Intervarsity Christian Fellowship. We were sharing together about the various ways God is using campus ministries to reach young people. However, he shared something that really struck me and reminded me of the spread of darkness. He claimed that the fastest growing campus religion presence was the Wiccans.*
Regarding this matter the Bible is very clear: "Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead" (Deuteronomy 18:10,11).  There are no "good" witches.  Evil and good are not compatible companions but rather contrasting foes.  We cannot dabble in darkness and still live in the light.
The radiant light of God's Holy Word exposes and dispels darkness. When God's servants live as children of light, darkness is dissipated.  All of us, in one way or another, are exposed to deeds of darkness or people who have chosen to walk in darkness. We are called to let our light shine and, by God's grace and through His might, we want to shine brightly to expose and then dispel the darkness!
The daily text says we were once darkness but are now light in the Lord and thus we are to live as children of light. We are to have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.  At this time when crusaders of darkness are especially applauded, let us hear the resounding call God has placed upon our lives to "live as children of light!"

There is a candle in every soul
Some brightly burning, some dark and cold
There is a Spirit who brings a fire
Ignites a candle and makes His home
Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the hopeless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world

Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily Prayer: Jesus, You are the Light of the world.  And because You reside in our hearts we are a reflection of Your holy light.  The world we live in is dark and growing even darker as Satan's sinister and deceitful schemes are being played out.  Help us not to look away  when darkness is spreading lest the darkness overshadow us in time.  Instead would You empower us through the light of Your Holy Spirit to shine in a wicked and decadent society.  We come against the darkness by speaking against wickedness in all forms.  And, Lord, help us to be consistent not only in what we speak but the manner in which we live.  May the fruit of light be evident in all we do.  In Your name, Jesus, we pray.  Amen.

Hope Winchoba
Hope Winchoba with Ester
I always liked John's shed in the background with his buoy collection.
One of my great memories was quahogging with John in the bay.
(Quahog is a type of clam!)

Last night we called Hope Winchoba, a long-time member of the church we served in New England. Hope is eighty-eight now but still lives in the little home she and her late husband John built years ago on West Island, out in the Atlantic off the coast. John went to be with the Lord in 1999 shortly before we left that area. They were a dear couple; steady, solid, supportive even to a younger minister who likely did things a bit or at times a lot different than they were accustomed to. We enjoyed driving down for pastoral visits and I will never forget the last time I saw John as he prepared for his departure. Faithful to the end.

As a little girl Hope was in the very first service the church had in 1928. Amazingly she still remembers the service, what she wore and several of the people who were there.  She is a direct descendent of two family lines from the Mayflower voyage in 1620.

Last year I shared an encouragement about an experience John and Hope had while on vacation years ago in England.

Today's suggested music:
"Go Light Your World"
(Video) Moving song and graphics. Appears to be a mission team to a Latin American country
(Video) A great job by some college students. Choral sounds great!
"Light Your World"
(Video) I thought of Hope as I watched this video.

* Wiccan is a neopagan, earth-centered religion associated with witchcraft.

George with funny hat
George is an employee in one of our chaplain service companies. Yesterday they had an employee luncheon and requested funny hats. I was startled when I looked up and saw George with this makeshift hat!
(Look closely to see a huge clamp over his hat.  Perhaps he needed the vice to keep his head together.)

Today I posted some more bloopers to our humor blog. I found these last night while cleaning out some files in my office. Brooksyne sure laughed as she typed them! They really may be the funniest yet. It's sure easy to see how they could happen.  Read them here.

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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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