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Friday, April 9, 2010

Mascot Roller Mill
Mascot Roller Mill
Built in 1760 along Mill Creek in eastern Lancaster County. For nearly 250 years it has stood the test of driving rains, a flooding stream, and howling winds.

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It's not the ferocity of the storm

but the veracity of the foundation!

"The Solid Rock"

"The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock" (Matthew 7:25).

Last night we spent the evening in Lynchburg, Virginia.  As we drove onto the campus of Liberty University the rains were pouring, even making driving a bit difficult.  It was still raining very hard when we went to eat at a restaurant.  As we were eating an overhead radio speaker kept sending out emergency signals. You know the kind; they're unavoidably loud, and the horrible sound affects you a little like raking your fingernails across a chalkboard.  Due to the noisy restaurant we couldn't fully hear the advisory, but guessed it to be either a tornado or flood warning.  Clearly, we knew that we needed to be on guard.

I am sure everyone reading, regardless of where you live, has experienced heavy rains and high winds and have been warned of potential danger! Christ's parables dealt with pertinent themes that would have readily connected with his initial listeners.  His stories also have a remarkable cross-cultural and multi-generational impact.  

Christ speaks of two different types of foundations in Matthew 7 as He concludes the Sermon on the Mount.  He describes one foundation that was built on sand and another one that was built on rock.  Both were subject to identical storm conditions, but only one stood; the one that "had its foundation on the rock."

Two spiritual foundations are contrasted. One foundation is likened to the person who hears the words of Christ and puts them into practice; the other is likened to the person who hears the very same teaching but does not put it into practice.  The foundation is what a house is built upon and of course Jesus is talking about our life here. Our life is the house in this illustration.

Both houses faced the very same kind of storm. In fact, the identical phrase is used, "The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house."  But one stood and the other fell. The essential difference was not the ferocity of the storm but the veracity of the foundation.

Our Lord's great emphasis in this teaching is that we are to be like the one whom He calls "a wise man." In life the winds will surely blow and beat against our spiritual house.  Some of you are enduring tremendous winds of opposition as you read this message.  We must be sure that we are building our foundation on the Rock.  Let us determine that we will both hear His words and put them into practice!

Today, you may or may not be facing howling winds in your life. We don't know the precise time they will come but they most certainly will. As I think about the weather advisory last night in the loud restaurant, it seems that the abrasive noise over the radio speakers would have gotten people's attention, but it didn't. People paid no attention.  But we, as God's people, need to pay careful attention to the words of Jesus and, just as importantly,  we must put them into practice.  By doing so, we'll be on solid, unshifting ground when the tidal waves of opposition beat against our foundation.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer:  Jesus, to embrace Your teaching is life-transforming but to deafen our ear to Your words keeps us ever searching and never finding life-long answers to that which matters most.  May we hunger and thirst for Your righteousness. Help us to apply Your wisdom to our lives and instruct those You've entrusted to our care to walk in Your ways.  Our foundation will be unshakeable and storm-proof as You build our lives based upon Your eternal truths.  Amen.

Phil Miller 4/8/10
Last night we had dinner at Dickey's Barbeque, the last of my Barbeque sprees that I always enjoy when I travel. Phil Miller, a friend of Ester's, attends Liberty University in Lynchburg. They're posing with the founders of Dickey's Barbeque which originated in 1941!  Phil and Ester are standing alongside the lifesize photo of the founders.  Except for the color difference, it looks like they could be part of the Dickey Family!

Right Barber Shop, Lynchburg, VA 4/8/10
Early this morning we took a brisk walk through downtown Lynchburg and struck up a conversation with Albert who has owned a downtown Barber Shop for over 50 years.  It was filled (over-filled, I should say) with relics, snake skins, antiques, an amazing assortment of stuff -you name it!!  We commented on his unusual setting and he said, "You ain't seen nothing yet.  I have two stories full of stuff above my barber shop and 40 acres where I live."  His story reminded us of the show "American Pickers" on the History channel (one of my favorites).  He said he watches the show regularly. His barber shop would be an excellent site for an airing of the television show!

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"The Solid Rock"  Video 

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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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