Daily Encouragement Net Header
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Home   About Us  Archives   Free email subscription   ListenListen to these messages
Print Text only for printing
  Bookmark and Share 

 See here for more info.
<Previous Message                                                    Next Message

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Donegal Creek in the Springtime (click to enlarge)
Donegal Creek, Lancaster County PA
Yesterday afternoon we took a walk along this creek, which is about 1/2 mile from our home, and noted how high the water was.
(Click on photo to enlarge)

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

Note: Today's message is a follow-up to our message Monday on "Spiritual Downsizing". 

"Spiritual Upgrades"

"His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness" (2 Peter 1:3).

XT computerI first started using computers about twenty years ago.  "Upgrade" is a term computer users are quite familiar with and I've been through several since I began with an XT, 386, 486 and several generations of Pentiums. Of course the same is true of operating systems. As I recall when I began it was Windows 3.1. The newest Windows system, Windows 7, now comes on new computers, although I haven't yet upgraded to it. Each version is new and exciting but soon becomes old stuff in a few years. That's just the nature of progress!

2010 computerOf course one of the main features we look for in computers is "power". Each time we upgrade, the processor is faster and has more power.  This is one measurement that I have a hard time understanding but do observe when I am at work. Memory is another important consideration. The latest computer I am looking into as I consider my next upgrade has speed, power and memory many, many times greater than the one I started on!

Today let us consider "spiritual upgrades".  Those in the fellowship, today, and I suppose all through church history, have promoted a new upgrade.  Although not said exactly in these words, the message conveyed is "You've been completely missing out and you just must hear this new teaching, have this experience, or be in this setting."  People clamor to hear the latest preacher, the newest teaching, the hot new musical group, or jet off to wherever the current life-changing conference is located. Since I've been in ministry I've seen many fads come and go and some come around a second and third time!  (I used to hear that saying from older ministers when I was a young minister and now I am experiencing it myself.)

Now let me clarify this.  Surely we all need to grow in faith and be on a lifelong quest to deepen our understanding and knowledge of God. There are many enriching opportunities where we will be challenged to deeper levels of growth in our walk with the Lord.  In fact Peter was concerned for his readers and at the end of his book he challenges them to "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (3:18).

Do we need spiritual upgrades?  I realize any illustration can be misunderstood, particularly seeking to apply a technical concept to a spiritual matter, but I believe the truth in our daily verse is vitally needed today. Peter, under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, made the powerful assertion to the early believers 2,000 years ago that Christ's "divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness…"  I especially find richness in the phrase "everything we need."

Perhaps in seeking to use the operating system analogy I could put it this way. The initial version, "the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints" (Jude 3), is altogether complete and adequate. We will spend a lifetime learning and applying the features!  In regard to computers and most software programs I only scratch the surface regarding utilizing the capabilities. How much more so is this true in regard to God's Word!

Is the "everything we need" in regard to God's divine power that was  sufficient for Peter's original readers also sufficient for us living in 2010?  A billion times yes!!! 

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer: Father, when we place our trust in You we've only begun to tap into the unlimited resources You make available to the believer. You have blessed us with Your special favor and Your unsurpassed peace and it only gets better and better as we grow to know You more and more. The illumination of Your Word is truly a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path revealing the mystery of the Gospel to us.  May we be found consistent from day to day growing in the grace and knowledge You give to us in the midst of varying daily experiences of life. It is in Christ's name that we pray.  Amen. 

Brooksyne's Note: In considering our message today I think of some believers I've known who crawl along spiritually until the next Christian retreat is scheduled or their favorite music group is back in town or whatever it is that moves them out of complacency.  When I was a teen I went to church regularly but I didn't expect growth spiritually until youth camp came around every year.  It was almost like I "saved up" for the spiritual charge directed at my age group instead of feasting on God's manna daily and realizing God's power is altogether sufficient to meet all my spiritual and physical needs through His divine Word everyday.  As I matured I realized I didn't have to wait for a special occasion to grow in His grace and knowledge.  I could do it each day in my quiet time with Him. And that was my biggest problem since I didn't have a devotional life.  It was in Bible College that I finally began this essential spiritual discipline, not only because we were challenged regularly to do so, but it was my best friend, Debbie, from Ohio who modeled a faithful devotional life that inspired me to begin this discipline as well.  May you find Christ to be all-sufficient as you make time for Him each day. And may you also find those special occasions such as retreats, camps, conferences, revivals and such to be like frosting on the cake as you taste and see that the Lord is good!

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

"Everything We Need"  Video  This is the 2 Peter passage from above set to Acapella music.

"Enough"  Video  Chris Tomlin  We recall first hearing this song in a church near Hartford Connecticut a number of years ago when we visited a friend in that area. It struck us both at the time as a very powerful song!

Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne.

Sign up here for the free daily email encouragement.

Permissions: Please feel free to pass on, reproduce and distribute any material on Daily Encouragement Net, in part or in whole, in any format, provided that you do not alter the wording in any way or charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. It is our desire to spread this material, not protect or restrict it. I do request that you keep the contact, copyright and subscription information intact.

Text only version for printing: To make a text only version for printing (without photos or any of the supplemental materials)
1) Open the basic text editor that comes with all computers (known as wordpad, textpad, etc.)  You can also use a program like Word and select paste text only.
2) Select and copy the text from the portion of the message you want to print.
3) Paste into the text pad. (The photos won't show up but you will have a brief text description of the photo which you can delete or just ignore.)
4) Format if you desire (change font, increase or decrease size, etc.)
5) Print!

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."

Daily Encouragement Net is an affiliate of Christianbook.com 
© Copyright 2010 Stephen C. Weber - All Rights Reserved
Daily Encouragement Net - 495 Kraybill Church Road - Mount Joy, PA 17552  USA

Contact us

"Living securely today anchored in God's solid foundation"