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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Stone farmhouse on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County, PA
Farm scene on Flory Road, Lancaster County, PA
We passed this peaceful scene the other evening as we rode our bikes through our neighborhood.
(Click to enlarge)

"Therefore We Will Not Fear"

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"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. Selah" (Psalm 46:1-3).

Just this morning Brooksyne and I were laughing together as I recalled an event that took place a few years back. Ester had gone to church early with Brooksyne who was serving on the worship team that particular Sunday. My plans called for speaking in another church that morning. While taking a shower I heard a very loud knocking on our entry door. I shouted, "I'm in the shower... I'll be there in a minute." Again I heard a loud knocking on the door and I shouted even louder (and I can shout very loud as any will attest who know me personally).

Knowing that homes are specifically targeted for robbery during church time I quickly wondered what this was all about. My heart was already racing about the repeated knocking on the door. But then there was a loud rapping right on the fiberglass shower door. The "intruder" had broken into our house and was coming right for me. Imagine how utterly disarmed and unprepared I was to fight off an intruder. I prepared to meet my Maker or at the very least to experience one of life's most embarrassing moments. 

Then she could contain it no longer. I heard Brooksyne roaring with laughter. It turns out that she had forgotten some of her music and had returned to get it. I'm normally the practical joker in our home but she sure got back at me that time! She still laughs as she recalls my trembling response of "Yyyy..eeeee....ssssss?" to her rapping on the shower door. (Brooksyne's note: I'm cackling with laughter even as I edit this since it was hilarious at the time.)
I suppose you can recall some very fearful moments in your life. Some were very serious; others, like my shower experience, were perhaps a practical joke. Some fears are acute and intense, lasting for a few seconds, but creating an adrenaline surge. Others last indefinitely, nagging at your peace.

In the daily text it seems the Psalmist is considering a worst type scenario in overcoming his fears; "though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging." Now that would certainly be frightening!

But the chapter starts with
a great statement of truth and faith, "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." What assurance and peace the mere recitation of this truth brings! I especially like the phrase "an ever present help in trouble."  An alternate reading is "abundantly available for help".

As a result of this truth the Psalmist declares, "Therefore we will not fear." The phrase "fear not" is seen throughout the Bible from Genesis to Revelation.  Obviously fear has been plaguing the human race from the beginning of time.

What is creating fear in your heart today? God has not changed.  His promises are never "null and void." He's been faithful and that's not about to stop. Chuck Swindoll has a colorful way of putting it: "God's never missed the runway through all the centuries of fearful fog." Join us in trusting God today.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Thankful manDaily prayer: Father, You want us to have peace instead of fear. Therefore You speak to our hearts many times, "Fear not" and give us many reasons why we are not to be fearful people. The most compelling reason that we need not fear is that You promise never to leave us nor forsake us. You are our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble. So we ask that You embolden us and fill our hearts with courage in place of fear. As someone once said, "Courage is fear that has said its prayers."

Today we share several photos from our neighborhood as we rode our bikes the other night.

(Each of these photos can be enlarged)

Horses on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County PA
Horse farm on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County,

Stone farmhouse on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County, PA
Old stone farmhouse on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County PA.

Farm on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County, PA
White and Pink peonies line the wooden fence at this farm on Trout Run Road
 Lancaster County, PA

Donegal Mills Plantation (Click to enlarge)
Donegal Mills Plantation on Trout Run Road, Lancaster County, PA
This plantation looks freshly painted. Perhaps it is being restored and will open again for tourists.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"God Is My Refuge"  Video 
Charlie and Jill LeBlanc

"Whom Shall I Fear"  Video  Lincoln Brewster and Kari Jobe

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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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