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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fall decorations in Jim Thorpe, PA
Fall decorations in front of a storefront in Jim Thorpe, PA

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"A Lesson From Ho-ly Socks!"

"And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life" (1 John 5:11,12).

Socks with holesBrooksyne can be very prudent in regard to household management and keeping track of guarantees. Several years ago she purchased socks for me in part due to the excellent guarantee offered. I tend to wear out socks quickly, especially at the toes. However within a short time one by one the toes in the new socks got holes in them. Recalling the guarantee she called the company and was told to merely return them and they would be replaced. She put the socks in a large envelope and it wasn't till after they were sealed and ready to go that I saw the letter she had included with the return on the computer screen.

Here's how she began the letter: "I purchased these socks on October 14, 1903 at Sam's Club in Hershey PA for my husband's birthday. What appealed to me was your guarantee that the sock's toes and heels would not wear out. But they already wore out."

Well, that's quite an expectation for a sock guarantee isn't it? Brooksyne is really upset that after only 100 years of wear they already have holes in the toes! They just don't make stuff like they used to! Of course Brooksyne had a senior moment since she meant to write 2003 rather than 1903. It's one thing to be off by a year during the Checkuary phase of starting a new year but to be off by a century is quite a stretch.  
In the letter she went on to state that she kept the sales receipt, which would be quite remarkable record-keeping!

This sure reminds me of a tremendous promise and assured guarantee in the Scriptures. God's faithfulness is a steadfast guarantee of the trustworthiness of this and all His promises. The apostle John is coming to a conclusion in his first epistle. He begins this section, "And this is the testimony."  The Greek word for testimony, "marturia" means, "evidence given." It is an important introduction adding gravity to what follows.

John uses this statement to solemnly present a summary truth, "God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son."  The serious believer will find great assurance, comfort and peace in this simple statement.  In fact I find it more helpful and personal to replace the pronoun "us" with my own name in this passage: "God has given Stephen C. Weber eternal life."  Perhaps you'll do the same since all who have placed their faith in Christ for salvation can do so. Place your name in the blank and say aloud:
"God has given ______________ eternal life."  If you'll ponder that very simple verse and its incredible meaning for your life today nothing will cause you to stumble.

It's a definitive statement, rich in theological truth.  "God has given us eternal life."  This aspect of our salvation, like all others, is a gift from God.  We cannot earn it, we do not deserve it.  "This life is in His Son."  Never forget that. It's the best lifetime guarantee that doesn't expire at our death but is only more fully realized!  
"He who has the Son has life."

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily Prayer: Father, there are many promises made by well meaning individuals but circumstances change, people change and many of them fall by the wayside. There are also those who make the pretense of a promise never fully intending to keep it. Their motive is not pure and is self-serving.  Help us, as the redeemed, to be people who are trustworthy and not to make a promise that we cannot keep.  We are assured that your promises are trustworthy because of that which has already come to pass. We continue to wait for many other promises in the Bible to be fulfilled on the appointed day that You have ordained.  Proverbs assures us that "You keep every promise You make.  You are like a shield to all who seek Your protection."  What a reassuring truth we, as Your children, can hold onto this day and each day.  We give You thanks through Jesus our Lord.  Amen.

Years ago I read a book that devised humorous terms for how we describe events in life in the "Unword" dictionary. "Checkuary" is an "unword" that describes accidentally writing last year's date on memos and checks during the months of January and February when we still may think it's the previous year. It's also called "Remembruary". However I am not sure what Brooksyne date mistake would be called, perhaps centuary or even millinialary.  

Tommy & Nelma Carpenter 10/12/11
Yesterday afternoon Tommy and Nelma Carpenter, friends from Arkansas stopped by for a brief visit. They are veteran missionaries and continue to serve as a prayer task force mission representative in their "retirement" years. They were in the area for a missions conference near Philadelphia and were heading back home through Lancaster County to eat at the Shady Maple, where their son had told them was a great place to eat.

I met Tommy Carpenter several years ago when I had a meeting with Al Worthley, my chaplain supervisor in Springfield, Missouri. We are now connected through Daily Encouragement Net and I have often been blessed by a thoughtful email or phone call from him. Tommy and Nelma have three children all in ministry and grandchildren preparing for ministry. They are a very friendly, colorful couple and as a veteran preacher he's had lots of interesting experiences!

They served as missionaries to British Honduras (now Belize) in the late sixties but a health problem prohibited Tommy from continuing to serve on the mission field. He returned to the states and pastored for many years and then in 1994 became the Secretary/Treasurer of the Arkansas District. The next year he was asked to join a mission team for a short-term trip back to Belize. They had a couple of weeks of fruitful ministry but the greatest blessing came as he was leaving. As he was departing to return to the States he went through security at the Belize airport and the agent looked at his name, then looked up at him and asked, "Are you Tommy Carpenter?"  Tommy responded, "Well, yes."  The man told him that he had come to his village many years earlier (it would have been at least 25 years) and preached the Gospel and he had gotten saved at that time!

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
Click on the link to open and play.

"In Christ Alone"  Video  Keith and Kristyn Getty

"In Christ Alone"
 Video  Instrumental

"By Faith"  Video  Keith and Kristyn Getty

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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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