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Monday, August 24, 2009

Stretch of Route 66 in Pulaski County Missouri
An old stretch of Route 66 in Pulaski County Missouri.
Compared to Interstate 44 just a few miles away it seemed abandoned.

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"A Lesson From Route 66"

"There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death" (Proverbs 14:12).

Route 66 historic signOn the way back from our Midwestern trip last week we drove along old Route 66 for several miles.  Up through Oklahoma and Missouri old Route 66 generally parallels Interstate 44 and that's a much faster route of course.  Charles Kuralt has observed, "Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything. From the Interstate, America is all steel guardrails and plastic signs, and every place looks and feels and sounds and smells like every other place."  But we intentionally got off the faster route and moseyed along a far more interesting route for sentiment's sake. 

Brooksyne grew up on a small farm right off Route 66 southwest of Tulsa, Oklahoma.  We met in Bible College right off Route 66 in Springfield MO. We were married in a church near Route 66 in Sapulpa Oklahoma.  As Bible students our very first pastoral experience was in a tiny country church in Northfield, MO near Route 66.

Route 66 is probably the most famous US route, the historic main highway from Chicago to LA and popularized in John Steinbeck's book, "The Grapes Of Wrath". He termed it the "Mother Road".

Although it's been abandoned as a US route it is still 85% active with state and county road designations. Most old US highways like Route 1 up the east coast or Route 40 through the midsection are still active highways and are generally the commercial roads with ever-changing business locations. Route 66 in many places seems locked in time and driving on it gives you some sense as to what a family road trip might have been like in 1950.

Well of course I draw a spiritual application here.  An early designation of the Church was "The Way", used 5 times in the Book of Acts. I am sure this was based on a statement of Christ, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life" (John 14:6).  Today we want to consider "the way" we are on. We want to stay on the Bible Road.

The spirit of lawlessness is evident in our time. Our world is dealing with indescribable evil resulting in rampant sinful behavior that signals a return to the turbulent Biblical period of the Judges when the people became their own authority.  They completely ignored the laws God had laid down and acted on their own opinions of right and wrong.  The writer portrays the spiritual climate with these words,  "Everyone did what was right in his own eyes" (Judges 21:25). It is also descriptive of our own time period.

We pray that God will give each reader deep discernment to understand the times. We pray that you will have a firm resolve to be faithful to God. In a remarkable prophetic statement in Daniel 12:10 we read, "The wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand."

"King Of The Road" sign
We seek God for insight to understand and believe that timeless biblical truths are God's appointed means to convey to us His plan for our lives. As we travel the Bible Road we become very familiar with God's roadmap and recognize the enemy's unscrupulous tactics. We learn to navigate through difficult terrain!  Road bumps are inevitable but with a firm resolve to stay the course on Bible Road we will land safely and not be steered astray by deadly alternate routes.

"There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death" (Proverbs 14:12).  An interesting aspect of our daily verse is that it's repeated twice verbatim in the book of Proverbs.  It seems that the Holy Spirit wants to make doubly sure that we absolutely get this one!  It's a clear and straightforward saying with an enduring truth.  Indeed there are many ways that seem right to man. Our world is full of these other "ways."

Today, there are indeed many ways that seem right. The vital question of life we all must consider and answer for ourselves is, "Am I going His way?"  "Am I on the Bible Road?"

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer: Father, I am thankful for the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures that provides an objective and accurate guide for every season of my life.  The Bible is a lamp unto my feet and a light for the path that lies before me.  It teaches, convicts, corrects, and trains me in the ways of godliness.  Though many will choose other authorities to guide their lives, I choose Your Holy Book to equip me for the works You've called me to do in Your name.  I rely on its inspired texts to sustain me in my lifetime commitment to walk in Your ways as I travel the Bible Road that leads to eternal life.   Amen.

Some more Route 66 photos

There's a lot of neat photos we took along Route 66 but here are several.

Northfield Church
This is the little country church in Northfield, Missouri we first pastored before we were married and still in Bible College. We recall cooking hot dogs using the flame that heated the furnace after church on Sundays. Sadly the church is no longer holding services and is now used for country music jamborees.

1938 John Deere D tractor
We drove by this old tractor and I couldn't resist getting on it.

Route 66 RockerWe passed this giant rocking chair. I thought maybe we could get a photo sitting in it as a family like we did here, but this one was just too big for that!  Besides that, climbing wasn't allowed on this 20' chair.

Vintage Route 66 filling station
A vintage filling station along old 66.
No longer selling gas but sure fixed up nice!  
You can see our van's reflection as Brooksyne took this photo.

Route 66
Quite a number of business owners tend to seize the sentiment of being on Route 66 to decorate their businesses.

Missouri Hick BBQ
I don't know how vintage this place is but thought it had an interesting name and I suspect some pretty good BBQ!

Tomorrow we will share some photos from a great time we had at the Indiana State Fair last Tuesday.

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.)

"The Way You Should Go"  Psalm 32:8 from the Integrity Scripture Memory series. Audio

"God's Guidance"  Audio  This entire album has Scripture songs on the theme of God's guidance.

A great playlist someone has compiled of Old Testament memory verses from this series.  Audio

Brooksyne and Ester singing a verse alluded to in the prayer.  Audio

Here's some more info about Route 66
Legends of America/Route 66
Historic Route 66

Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne.

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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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