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 Listen to these messages
Text only for printing
See here for more info.
<Previous Message Next Message
Thursday, February 24, 2011
These Amish children sure enjoy sledding down the hill!
Listen to this message on your audio player.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11).
The chapel meeting room was all concrete, including the ceiling, so you can imagine the sound dynamics. There weren't enough chairs in the room so some of the men just sat on the floor. Prior to beginning the service the room was very loud as the men talked together but when I told them that we were preparing to enter into worship the chapel grew very quiet and still.
I preached a message to the prisoners about having a hope and a future based on Jeremiah 29:11. The message I shared with those men I share with each Daily Encouragement reader today. The Lord has declared, "For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
"abundant life." (John 10:10). In His abundance toward us He proclaims, "freedom for the captives. He bestows a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair" (Isaiah 61:1,3).
But the best part will be the eternal future. That's so beautifully expressed in the final verse of Amazing Grace, "When we've been there ten thousand years…" The greatest experiences of this life will not even compare to the future in heaven God has planned for us! Paul exhorts us to "fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal" (2 Corinthians 4:18).
We may have little sense of the great future God has planned for us who truly love Him. We only see the smaller picture. Some of the prisoners may only sense their current plight and feel such hopelessness and despair. I wanted them to see beyond that as I ministered that day. The same may be true for some of you reading our message today.
God sees our hope and future far beyond what we see through the maze of life in our temporary existence. If we saw the big picture such as our heavenly Father does, we would view the intertwined dark and light colors of our life's tapestry with perpetual rejoicing. Rejoice in Him today as together we declare the awesomeness of our God as He is fulfilling His plan in our lives!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily Prayer: Father, though we see through a glass darkly we're so glad that You have a perfect plan for our future. You want to prosper us and never to harm us. We do not throw away our confidence based upon what we see, but instead we choose to live by faith, since faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Help us to be faithful as we patiently wait to see Your plans fulfilled in our lives. We pray for those who minister in the prisons. Grant them power and grace, as they present a transforming message of hope, forgiveness, and endurance through Christ. We pray for the prisoners whose lives have been transformed, that You will enable them to reach other inmates who need to be saved from their sins. And lastly we pray for the people of New Zealand as they await word regarding their loved ones who remain trapped in the ruins of the recent earthquake. May Your grace and favor be evident in the midst of devastation and extremely difficult circumstances we pray. Amen.
PS: There's much more I could share about the prison meeting. There is an incredible lack of any pretentiousness among the prisoners. The men remained fully attentive and engaged during the entire message. During my sermon a loud buzzer went off as I preached followed by a terse announcement that the movie was starting. I paused and asked if any of the men wanted to go to the movie. The resounding answer was "No". They seemed to just soak in the message and many expressed earnest appreciation as they left. I challenged the men to accept the Lord as their Savior and to tell me if they had done so. A man approached me afterwards and told me he had!
One of the most touching moments was another man who spoke about a point I made referring to those on the outside who cared about them such as their parents, spouse, or children. He asked, "What do I do if no one cares about me?" This is one of the most difficult issues to deal with as most of us have others who care about us. I briefly assured this man of God's care.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Be Glorified" Video Ron Kenoly
"For I Know The Plans I Have For You" Video Martha Munizzi
"Trust His Heart" Video
I have a question for tech people. I've had this experience several times lately when searching for suitable videos on YouTube and wonder if the search results are gamed. I was searching for a song on Isaiah 29:11 (a verse from the Jewish and Christian Scriptures) that I recall from the Integrity Scripture Memory Series and the top search results on YouTube for Isaiah 29:11 are all related to Islam!!!
I was unable to find the song I was looking for but in the course of searching I found a beautiful song from that series based on Psalm 103 Video
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.)
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 2011 Stephen C. Weber - All Rights Reserved
Daily Encouragement Net - 495 Kraybill Church Road - Mount Joy, PA 17552 USA