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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Country Log House Farm
The Country Log House Farm
It's a beautiful summer day here in Lancaster County and we took a long walk early this morning passing this farm.

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"Making His Fame Known"

"LORD, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known" (Habakkuk 3:2).

Jonathan Edwards
On July 8, 1741 (268 years ago today) Jonathan Edwards stepped behind the pulpit and methodically delivered what many would consider the most famous single sermon ever preached in America. Few preachers have not heard of "Sinners in the hands of an Angry God" or read the account of the astounding conviction that came over the assembled listeners that day.

People wept and cried out to God for mercy and many were saved. It wasn't because of his eloquence or his charismatic, slick sermon delivery.  Instead Edwards was described as "one who preached powerfully although lamely dependent on his manuscript, who delivered his sermons in a monotone, with his eyes never straying from the back wall of the church.”

The next several years our country experienced a revival known as "The Great Awakening."  The meeting house itself where Edwards regularly preached burned down in 1775 and only a small, engraved stone now marks the spot where it stood in Enfield, Connecticut.  Brooksyne, Ester, and I prayed at that spot several years ago and renewed our commitment to serving God in our generation.

In our daily encouragement series we emphasize the aspect of daily choice and commitment a lot.  Each one of us has an apportioned amount of time to live on this earth known only to God.  We are physically designed to die.  Each day approximately 150,000 people die worldwide. The Bible forthrightly states, "It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment" (Hebrews 9:27).

What matters most is the decision to follow God.  Habakkuk stood up for God in his day.  Jonathan Edwards stood up for God in his day as have millions through the church age.  Now it's our turn.

Habakkuk is one of the lesser known and read Biblical books, among a collection known as the Minor Prophets. The basic theme of his book is living by faith. He wrote at the time of Jeremiah when the nation was under judgment and his focus was to encourage the godly remnant to fully comprehend God's ways in regard to their sinful nation and His impending judgment.  He greatly desired that they were to live their remaining days exalting God and witnessing His awesome deeds.

Our daily Scripture portion has two elements:

"LORD, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD."  As the people of God, let us rejoice in hearing the fame of God far surpassing any human fame that exists for only a season and touches relatively few.  May our Lord's supernatural deeds keep us in a state of awe and wonder of His great power and His message that  spreads to the uttermost parts of the world. 

"Renew them in our day, in our time make them known."  My, how an awareness of and appreciation for God's fame needs renewed in our day!  How desperately we need a restoration of awe for His deeds.  Consider the incredible moral confusion and idolatry demonstrated in the last week. Consider how God's Name is all too often trampled, cursed, and used as a mindless exclamation instead of reverenced and held in awe by those who speak it.  My heart grieves at the apostasy and spiritual blindness sweeping our land.  Good is called evil and evil is called good.

Today, join Brooksyne and me among others with a steadfast heart who declare, "Lord I lift Your Name on high, Lord I love to sing Your praises!"  "In our day, in our time", may the Lord use you and me and each faithful follower of Christ to make His fame and deeds known!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer: Father, we want to be a shining light to the nations, to bring a word of hope to the peoples of this earth so that the whole world will know there's salvation in Your name, there's awe in Your supernatural deeds and there is eternity to be gained in exchange for a temporal world.  We don't want to take for granted Your awesome deeds recorded in Scriptures or things done for us in the past.  Would you do it again, Lord!  Reveal Your power anew and make it known in our time, we pray.  Amen.

Photo: Weber's at spot where Jonathan Edwards preached "Sinner's In The Hands Of An Angry God"
Several years ago I conducted a wedding service for a college friend who lived in that area and we had an opportunity to visit the very site where Edwards preached the sermon "Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God" on this very date 268 years ago.

Stone marking location where Jonathan Edwards preached "Sinners in the hands of an angry God"
This small stone marks the location where Jonathan Edwards preached.
Click on photo to enlarge

If you care to do so you can read Jonathan Edward's sermon here.

Early this morning we took a four mile walk through our rural neighborhood. Here's a Google map of our route. We thought we would share several photos today from our neck of the woods.

Horses along Trout Run Road
These horses are along Trout Run Road.
They wear these screen-like masks to protect their eyes from flies.

Amish Team cultivating corn
Our Amish neighbor is already cultivating his corn.
Just up the road a bit they were getting ready to bale wheat straw, then spread manure! (using modern equipment).

Todays photo at the top is of the Country Log House Bed and Breakfast,
a local "agri-tourism" destination.

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.)

"Lord I Lift Your Name On High"  Video

"Famous One"  Video  Chris Tomlin

"Come Ye Sinners" (Audio) Sung and played by Regina Martin, a friend of ours, and recorded in our home "studio".

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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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