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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Golden leaves
Changing Golden Leaves

"The Ending Is Good"

Message summary: Today may the Lord give us a resolute will to live a holy life, shun the wrong and do the right no matter the consequences! Cling to what is good and remember the ending is good.

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"Hate what is evil; cling to what is good" (Romans 12:9).

We are still stunned and continue to follow the latest news regarding the horrific church shooting in Texas this last Sunday.

Nine members, representing three generations, of the same family were killed in the Sunday shooting – the youngest child was just 18 months old.

According to CBN News, Joe and Claryce Holcombe, lost nine family members during Sunday’s horrific mass shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, but, despite the unimaginable carnage, the couple are remaining firm and resolute in their Christian faith.

According to the Washington update from FRC the Holcombes are drawing on the same faith that brought the family to church on Sunday morning. With absolute conviction, Joe reflected soberly, "It's of course going to be difficult." But, he said, "We are Christians; we have read the book. We know the ending, and it's good." Leaning on the Lord's strength, God will see us through."

So many times it seems the strongest faith is expressed in the midst of greatest loss. Reading these words it occurs to me the great grace of having great faith. From other reports we have read Joe and Claryce seem like standout Christians, but to demonstrate such assurance in the days immediately following is outstanding. We can't explain it apart from God's grace.

Let us cling to what is good. Unwavering  faith is indeed needed to see any good coming out of the horror of murderous rampage but past tragedies have taught us the veracity of God's promises. Good can be seen as the small Texan community
, state, and even our nation pull together.

The power of the gospel is evident in the lives of those, like the Holcombes, who were directly affected
in the massacre, as their stories are being shared in person, all over the web and media. Their strong and active faith is surely an inspiration to all who hear and a challenge for people of no faith. (Brooksyne's sister has lived for twenty years in nearby New Braunfels where the shooter was from and had never heard of Sutherland Springs before yesterday. And now their faith is evident all over the world.)

In so many ways, in the midst of tragedy, the Church is showing its strength through the power of the Holy Spirit. Let us pray for the dedicated servants of Christ that are undoubtedly strategically, and providentially placed on the very front lines in dealing with this tragedy, such as
Pastor Dimas who offered up the courageous and Jesus-centered prayer during the news conference on Monday. What a powerful opportunity for witness amidst the most difficult of circumstances. And the same is true for all of us; "Faith means trusting God even if questions go unanswered".

Today may the Lord give us a resolute will to live a holy life, shun the wrong and do the right no matter the consequences! Cling to what is good and remember the ending is good.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, we are consoled by words of the Psalmist who encourages Your followers with these words;

"Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous. Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered forever. They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD. Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear; in the end they will look in triumph on their foes. Their righteousness endures forever; their horn will be lifted high in honor."

By faith we believe those experiencing loss, those suffering, and those who are in need of physical healing will one day look back on the darkest day of their lives and give testimony of how they overcame evil by the blood of the Lamb. Though Satan had a plot for evil, Your plan for good will prevail as those who look on are introduced to the power of the gospel as demonstrated by these courageous believers who are enduring unimaginable hardship and suffering. It is in the name of Christ that we pray for our dear brothers and sisters. Amen.

See Psalm 112 (NIV)

The extent of the impact that the event had on the Holcombe family is both staggering and unfathomable, as the elderly couple lost their son, Bryan Holcombe, and his wife, Karla, in addition to their grandson, Marc Daniel Holcombe, as well as his baby daughter — and their great-granddaughter — Noah.

They also lost Crystal Holcombe, the wife of their grandson, John Holcombe, three of their great-grandchildren — Emily, Megan and Greg — and the unborn baby Crystal was carrying, who was due to be born in April; John Holcombe and two additional children survived.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"What Faith Does"  Video   Legacy Five

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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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