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Monday, February 18, 2008
We're back home to the familiar surroundings of Lancaster County!
(Quite a contrast to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina)
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"A Good Reputation"
"He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil's trap" (1 Timothy 3:7).
Today is President's Day here in the USA. When I grew up we especially honored two presidents whose birthdays were in February; George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. For many years now we've had a generic "Presidents Day." Some presidents have a good reputation, some not so good.
My dad's birthday was also in February. He was born on February 17, 1919, the third of eight children. He served in World War II and then married my mother and had four children, passing away in 1998 at 79 years of age. I am blessed that my Dad had a good reputation. He ran a small plumbing, heating and air conditioning business in the Belton, Missouri area in the sixties. The year before my mom died in 2005 she received a heartwarming letter from a business owner in Belton commending Dad for his integrity and reporting that the air conditioning unit he installed at his business in the sixties was still operating! Daddy was honorable not only in his business relations but also in his family relations.
The daily Scripture is taken from a list of characteristics that Paul says must be used to qualify the fitness of a church leader. Sadly in our day the attempt to establish a "good reputation" is often more a result of spin or illusion than real substance or true character. The word for reputation is 'marturia', from which we get our English word 'martyr'. It is often translated "witness, testimony or evidence."
God calls us as His followers to have a good reputation that is truly a solid witness for Him. Our character is to reflect the standards of Christ and Scripture. The word "outsider" in the text most certainly means those outside the faith (unbelievers) or as the KJV puts it "them which are without." An excellent Biblical example of this type of reputation is Daniel who resolved in his heart to be faithful to his God.
Today, what kind of reputation do you have with the "outsider"? Most of you work around "outsiders" every day. Are you demonstrating a good, steady witness? Do your fellow workers see the character of Christ in your life daily?
Now certainly this may include a Christian symbol at your desk, but it's so much more. Are you honest? What about your temper? Your language? Your diligence? Your promptness? Are you following through? Do you honor Christ with your lips as well as your life? Do you speak well of your family and church? Remember, you are developing a witness daily; let it be a good one!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily Prayer: Father, Your Word indicates the way we interact with those outside the faith will have a positive or a negative influence on whether they choose to follow You. There appears to be no neutral mode in our lives, for we do not live unto ourselves, but regularly give account for our actions and attitudes daily. Inconsistency and double standards are ancient, effective traps Satan has set for believers. For those ensnared by this trap the unbelieving world points their accusatory finger crying, "Hypocrite!" Sadly, it is often a true characterization. May we, as Your disciples, be faithful in our walk and consistent in our talk as we serve You at home, in the workplace, in our churches, and in our sphere of influence. We do not want to disgrace the holy name of Jesus, but we want to honor His name as we glorify You in all we do. It is in Jesus' holy name that we pray. Amen.
Brooksyne's Note: "Reputation is what others think of you. Character is who you are when no one but God is looking." A quote I often contemplate when dealing with attitudes of the heart.
While in Myrle Beach we visited with Rick and Jackie Steudler and Rick's 90 year old mother, Jeanette. You can see where Rick gets his smile. They reside in Lancaster but were also visiting Myrtle Beach. We enjoyed our evening as we became better acquainted with Rick's family. Jeanette's ability to get around was especially impressive as we observed her physical endurance. Brooksyne and I commented that we'd really like to age as gracefully as she has.
As Brooksyne and Ester were inside Pier 14 Restaurant I stepped outside on the landing and took a shot through the window. The film coating on the window certainly turned our photo into an interesting shot we had not anticipated, as it reflected me taking the shot. I was wearing an Old Navy Sweat shirt as you can see, only spelled backward.
Today's Suggested Music and
"God Pleaser" (Audio)
"Psalm 5" (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.
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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