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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Rutt farm 4/4/10
We pass this peaceful farm each time we walk along Donegal Creek.
The stately brick barn blew over during Monday evening's storm.
(I took this photo in April 2010.)
Click on photo to enlarge.

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"Do Something!"

"Although our sins testify against us, O LORD, do something for the sake of your Name. For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you" (Jeremiah 14:7).

Jeremiah lived during the years immediately prior to Israel's destruction and captivity in Babylon.  The spiritual and physical conditions were horrific, as was the present drought that was devastating the land. God's judgment fell not only on the idolaters but also upon His own people (read Lamentations 2).  Jeremiah pleaded with the people to repent and turn to God and earnestly prayed, as expressed in the daily Scripture verse.

He begins with a confession of sin; "Our sins testify against us.  For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you." Jeremiah did not argue the basis of God's judgment but readily acknowledged the sins that were an inarguable testimony against the character of God's people. He appealed to God's mercy based on His sinless character and for His honor and glory.

"O LORD, do something for the sake of Your Name." I find his appeal so interesting, reflecting the desperation of the times: "Do something" he cried out, without being specific.  As I consider the state of our country and world today I find myself also using this prayerful non- specific appeal. I want God to act but am uncertain of what that action will look like or how it will be played out. As the great sins in our land and the world are considered, will this action be:

1) The return of God's Son in the culmination of the Church Age,
2) A great revival bringing a restoration of living by God's standards or
3) A pouring out of His powerful judgment.

I sense that we are at a tipping point and soon will find out. Our call, however God chooses to act, is to stay faithful.

The basis of Jeremiah's appeal was "for the sake of Your Name." Surely Jeremiah was considering much more than his own personal comfort and well-being and more than that of the people he cared so deeply for, including his own family.

He was concerned for the sake of God's Name.  He had seen the mighty acts of God in the past and certainly didn't want God to be viewed by the unrighteous as a powerless, helpless God.  Visible yet inanimate, powerless, and false god-like figures of the unbelieving nations surrounded him.  Jeremiah points out the stunning contrast of such idols as he threw in a probing question in verse 22:  "Do any of the worthless idols of the nations bring rain?"

Surely he wondered how all this fit in with the promised Messiah and the establishment of God's kingdom.  Well, God did indeed do something, although it wasn't in the typical fashion of fairy tales that usually sums up their story with, "and they lived happily ever after". Indeed God's judgment came upon the land and the Israelites were taken captive in Babylon. Yet God always has a plan for His people even if it is carried out while in captivity or under His judgment.  Those who remained faithful to Him are known as "the remnant".  (see Ezra 9:13)

Today God is doing something and will continue to do something.  He is reigning and His kingdom will come. May our driving cry for God's intervention, in whatever form it is be revealed not be so much for our personal comfort, but for the "sake of God's Name".  Notwithstanding the reality of evil, be deeply assured today, that God's ultimate plan for His children is always indescribably good!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer:  Father, we too must cry out with Jeremiah, "Our sins testify against us."  Our behavior reflects the inner desires of our hearts and so many times it does not reveal God-like character. Worthless idols all too often replace the devotion that once belonged only to You. We repent of our sins and seek Your intervention to cleanse our hearts and heal our land for the sake of Your name, for Your honor and glory.  In Jesus' name we pray.  Amen.

Yesterday we wrote about the severe storm that passed through our area on Monday. Our neighbor Leon called yesterday and told me his dad's barn had come down and welcomed me to come over and take a look.

Rutt farm 6/1/10
The barn was built in 1815, apparently replacing another barn (based on the age of the farmhouse). I was always intrigued
by the use of brick as a barn material and by the ventilation holes.

Rutt farm 6/1/10
The neighbors and church people were already busy cleaning up yesterday afternoon and they plan to rebuild. We may see an old order barn raising; a wonderful example of cooperation as the church folks come together. The men build the barn and the women prepare food.

Rutt farm 6/1/10
The only damage
to the stone farmhouse which was built in 1772 was a blown out attic window.

Rutt rose bush 6/1/10
This rose bush on the Rutt farm looked great yesterday afternoon after enduring such a pounding storm with quarter size hail. The corn crop did not fare as well and is the worst Mervin has ever seen. But he believes it will bounce back since, thankfully, the stalks are so little.

Today's farm is also seen in most of the sunset photos I take from our home such as here.

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.)

"God Is Good, All The Time"  Video  Today's theme for some reason brought to mind this happy song by Don Moen.

"God Will Make Away"  Video  Don Moen  A reminder that God will help us regardless of the circumstances we face.

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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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