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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Wreath on stone barn
Each Christmas season we enjoy passing this wreath
on an old stone barn on the Strasburg Pike.

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"God's Infinite Understanding"

"He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.  Great is our Lord and mighty in power; His understanding has no limit" (Psalm 147:4,5).

How are you doing with your Christmas shopping? Are you having trouble getting just the "perfect" gift?  I am a very poor shopper and struggle getting the right gift for my wife.  Well, for several years now I've been hearing about a very different gift. The International Star Registry allows you to name a star and will send you an official certificate!  Whoever came up with this has a pretty good business model since the current estimate among astronomers is that there are a billion stars, and of course they'll probably always be discovering a few million more. 

However there is a problem for the enterprising business entrepreneur who devised this scheme.  The mighty God we serve and who sent His only Son to this little planet earth has already taken care of naming all the stars.  He has determined their number and calls them each by name. 

He made them all (Genesis 1:16) and has them all accounted for.  The prophet Isaiah, in proclaiming the mighty greatness of God, declares "Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of His great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing" (Isaiah 40:26).  This is the great God we serve today!

Yesterday we wrote of the increasing evidence of mass apostasy (falling away) as modern man sits in judgment of God and His revealed truth in the Holy Scriptures.  On issue after issue we are told by modern experts that we've had it all wrong.  Author Rod Dreher writes concerning this viewpoint, "Truth is not determined by emotion, as I see it, and certainly I find it epistemologically arrogant to assume that an early 21st-century white American bourgeois male can stand in judgment of Scripture and the Church." I am quoting Rod Dreher here but I would emphatically remove the qualifying phrase, "as I see it." Truth is not determined by emotion. Period!

"His understanding has no limit." How extremely limited my understanding is. The very brightest minds understand only a tiny, tiny fraction of all there is to understand.  Each person's culture, location, and life experience will have a significant bearing in what he comes to know and apply to his understanding.  How distorted that is.

The NASV translates this phrase describing God's attribute as, "His understanding is infinite." Time, location, and culture are not factored into God's understanding for He has always existed and His understanding far exceeds our skewed vision and earth-based experience.  God's infinite frame of reference springs forth from His eternal character.  In His unshakable kingdom God's infinite understanding is applied not just here and now but will also be revealed in the future kingdom.

Today let us again resolve that we will stay true to the faith once for all delivered to the saints even while we humbly acknowledge our own very limited understanding in light of God's unlimited understanding.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer: Father, we are mindful that we not only fall short of Your glory, but we also fall short of understanding. Understanding all that You want to teach us in this life and the life yet to come.  But we draw near to You with a sincere heart as we study Your truths and seek to apply them with understanding to our minds and hearts.  This comes about as we read the Scriptures, as we meditate in prayer, as we contemplate Your holy character, and even as we make wrong decisions that force us to reaccess our actions and go back to Your infinite wisdom and understanding. As we do so we hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for You are faithful in all You say and in all You do.  We bless You, Lord, at all times and give thanks through Jesus Christ our Lord, for Your infinite wisdom.  Amen.

Today's Suggested Music
and Supplemental Resources
(Click on the link to open and play. In some cases you may also need to click again to start the song.)

"O Come, O Come Emmanuel"  Audio

Resources for Christmas Celebrations

It is our desire to share resources that may be a blessing to families and churches during this Christmas season. We will continue to post these resources through Christmas Day.

Looking for a very special Christmas gift for your parents?  
Here's an idea!  The best gift you can ever give your parents

Looking for a very special Christmas gift for your children?
Here's an idea!

Christmas Memories  Here's a collection of Christmas memories sent in by daily encouragement readers several years ago, along with an opportunity to share your own story. 

"In Remembrance of Me" pdf  This is a passion-filled Scripture reading for two adults. Stephen and I have used this reading with great receptivity during  Christmas Eve services.  We suggest, if possible, a musical background as the message is read. It is also a great lead-in to a Communion service. It should be thoroughly practiced and read with great feeling.

"When Christ Was Born" pdf This is an adaptation to the tune of "How Great Thou Art". It's a great song to sing as a congregation since most are familiar with the tune.

Responsive Christmas Scripture readings for church or family:
John 1:1-18  pdf
"O Come Let Us Adore Him"  

My First Christmas In Heaven  This is a blessed reminder for all who lost a loved one this year.

Christmas Knowledge Test

have also posted two Christmas carol quizzes here (scroll down).

re you Christmas shopping online?
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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, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. 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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