The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Monday, May 22, 2017
Message summary: A lesson from God's GPS.
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"You will make known to me the path of life" (Psalm 16:11).
In shady, green pastures, so rich and so sweet,
God leads His dear children along;
Where the water’s cool flow bathes the weary one’s feet,
God leads His dear children along.
Yesterday we attended a church in Hopeland to hear a friend from one of our companies. Tim Heitz pastored for many years and still remains active in ministry. He told us last week he was preaching in his home church so we headed that way on Sunday to hear his message. We had heard him speak before and appreciate his fidelity to the Word of God. The main theme of his sermon can be expressed in a phrase he repeated often throughout the message:
"Direction, Not Intentions,
Determines our Destination"
The main point was staying on the right path in life and keeping a focus on where you are headed. So many drift through life aimlessly with little sense of direction. But we can join the Psalmist in his declaration to God: "You will make known to me the path of life."
Brooksyne relies on the GPS for unfamiliar travel, but I would rather just find out where I am going and how to get there beforehand the old-fashioned way by studying the route out on a map!
GPS provides the directions step by step or turn by turn. If you follow it you don't know your next turn till shortly before it's time to make the turn. Essentially it provides doses of information as you need them. (Of course you can also look over the entire route but I expect that most who use GPS don't.)
There's a spiritual application here, of course. We may very well want directions from the Lord long before He gives them to us. It would be interesting if, following our birth, we received not only a birth certificate but also a life map. The path of life would be highlighted from our first breath to our last.
But of course this isn't the way our life's journey is laid out except maybe in an old rerun of Twilight Zone. That would be a robotic existence, not a faith-based, day by day journey where we refuse, neglect, or choose to walk in the ways of the Lord. Thankfully, we do have a life map to follow since the Bible is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.
The Psalmist expressed his assurance that "You will make known to me the path of life." As we walk this pilgrim pathway we only get daily doses of God's leading. All through our lives we need to remain sensitive to the leading of the Spirit and providential ministry opportunities that may spontaneously be given to us.
James captures this sentiment: "Now listen, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money." Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that" (James 4:13-15).
God directs our lives every day, whether it's a day of routine or whether it's a day(s) of upheaval. But it's during those times of upheaval that we often have difficulty hearing His voice and knowing which step to take next. Uncertainty looms over us and we want to make the right choice or give the proper response. How good it is when we take our concern to the Lord and we hear His voice in our spirit directing us, "This is the way, walk in it."
God has certainly not been silent and actually the sense of His faithfulness increases during times of uncertainty. In part, that's due to the way we lean on Him, which is just what He wants us to do!
We want to encourage all of our fellow believers today. Whether you are in a time of comfort and stability or in transition and shifting, keep an ear tuned to hear His voice. His daily dosage of direction is a divine GPS which is always available, up to date, always reliable, and will always keep you headed in the right direction!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we recognize from Scripture that You long to be gracious to Your children, to show them compassion and give them direction. You bless those who wait upon You. Though you give us the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, you also give us teachers, prophets, and believing friends who affirm or challenge us as we seek Your face and Your will for our lives. As we hold up the lamp of Your Word to lighten the path before us, how good it is to hear Your voice behind us saying, "This is the way, walk in it." You've promised that You will never leave us or forsake us. Darkness will not overtake us, for You are the Light of the World, and in You there is no darkness at all. Thank You for Your reassuring presence that You walk with us step by step on this day of our journey. We're in route now but we're assured that our final destination will have an eternal glorious address where our dwelling will be with You in heaven forevermore. Amen.
Friday evening we went to a Gospel Hymn Sing that featured a number of Southern Gospel groups and a major feature of the event was congregational hymn singing. See below for several videos of these hymn sings.
Saturday evening Ester and I attended a Ladies' Banquet. Pictured (L to R) are Katie Fritz, Rose Hickernell and her daughter, Annie Brown. Katie and Annie blessed us musically, then Rose and Annie shared a message together "Life is Hard - God is Good" as they told their own personal story of the ways God has turned their "disappointments" into "Hisappointments". The devil will always disappointment but if we cross out the "D" for disappointment and replace it with "H" we can more easily see how God leads us through life's difficult moments giving us hope in place of despair.
During the prelude the choir entered the sanctuary before taking their seats in the choir section. We were moved as an elderly woman hunched over, leaning on her cane for support, walked in among the members of the choir. But she stood straight and tall as she sang the choir number.
Here she is again shown with our friend Tim Heitz who shared the morning's message. Turns out June Uhler, who will be 90 in a few weeks, was Tim's youth leader many moons ago. She also sang duets with him on the local AM Ephrata radio broadcast their church aired for many years back in the 70's. Tim is considerably taller and is courteously kneeling beside her as we took this photo.
Yesterday our Amish neighbors hosted their church service and we had lots of buggy traffic passing our house but then we also had this interesting vehicle roar past our house that's sort of looks like the "Batmobile"!
Geese with goslings on Donegal Creek pond.
A view on Kraybill Church Road up from our house as we approach Donegal Springs Road. The array of contrasting colors caught Brooksyne's eye during her walk on Friday. Soon the golden field will be growing tall stalks of corn.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"God Leads Us Along" Video Gaither Vocal Band
"Heaven Came Down" Video
"At Calvary" Video
Another view of the abandoned house we saw yesterday. Due to the high property values in Lancaster County you rarely see properties in this condition so there must be a story. It's at the junction of East Brubaker Valley Road and Sleepy Hollow Road north of Lititz PA.
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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 make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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