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Friday, January 19, 2018

Herr Road farm, Lancaster County, PA 1/18/18 (Click to enlarge)
This spacious farm is located on Herr Road near Sight and Sound Theater. With the white structures, snow covered roofs and sun shining on the snow covered ground we needed sunglasses to focus on this extremely bright farm.
(Click on photo to enlarge)

"The Sanctity Of Human Life"

Message summary: "Sanctity" is a rather uncommon word. It means "the fact of being sacred or inviolable." We believe human life is sacred fundamentally because of our unique original creation as expressed in the daily Scripture portion.

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"Then God said, 'Let Us make man in Our image'. So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them" (Genesis 1:26a,27).

Several days ago Brooksyne watched a video on a friend's Facebook page. I was in another room and overheard it and wondered who it was. It turns out it was Senator James Lankford from Brooksyne's home state of Oklahoma! I heard him speak many years ago at a conference in Washington before he was elected as a senator. Essentially he points out the vile evil of the pro-abortion movement. (Link to video below)

Today tens of thousands of pro-lifers will converge on Washington, DC to participate in the annual "March for Life", which commemorates the anniversary of the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. I don't know how many will be there this year, but in the past it's numbered in the hundreds of thousands. I'm quite sure there will be quite a crowd again, although likely the secular main-stream news media will do one of three things: ignore it, focus on some strange fringe group, or give coverage to the miniscule pro-abortion demonstrators who'll be out.

I first participated in the March in the mid 1980's and have attended many times since then. I joined many others to take a stand for righteousness in the nation's capital with the committed. Most of them will be riding busses from all over the country to peacefully march in the event. You can count on them every year, rain or shine, bitterly cold or pleasant weather. They stand to say that "We have not forgotten the millions murdered since 1973." I have been so blessed by my association with these dedicated pro-lifers every time I have gone. 

The primary focus of the day is abortion, but as we continue to slide down the slippery slope of moral relativism, other issues are also important and related such as infanticide and euthanasia. Thus the beautiful designation "Sanctity of Life" in which the originators surely mean human life. In fact I have seen the term "Sanctity of Human Life" used as well. "Sanctity" is a rather uncommon word. It means "the fact of being sacred or inviolable." We believe human life is sacred fundamentally because of our unique original creation as expressed in the daily Scripture portion.

But this sanctity of human life is under vicious attack from the anti-God forces of this age. They deny the truth of the Bible and the clear teaching regarding our origins. Could our daily Scripture portion make it any clearer? One expression of the failure to understand this sanctity and unique place of mankind in the created order is the agenda of the animal rights movement. I am, of course, not speaking of being kind to our pets and other animals, which of course we should be. Regular readers know how much we enjoy our own pets and other animals as demonstrated in some photos we share today.

A core value of many animal rights proponents is that animals are qualitatively no different than humans. We just happen to be a little farther along in the evolutionary chain in this view. The view becomes so contorted that the same people who fight vigorously for the "right" to the abortion of an unborn human child will seek laws to protect eagle eggs and baby whales (which themselves may have merit). This is one of the points Senator Lankford makes in his speech referenced above.

A verse that comes to my heart as I conclude this message is, "But you, keep your head in all situations" (2 Timothy 4:5a). We really need to do that in these times. Stay faithful today. Remember that God loves you and you are special to Him. Your life matters.

Be encouraged today.

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Thankful manDaily prayer: Father, we thank You for the gift of life. We bless the courageous girls and women who, in the most difficult of circumstances, choose life over choosing to dispense of their "problem." We thank You for the vast groups of men and women who lend support to crisis pregnancies, to those who take in and raise children who are given up for adoption or are in foster care. We thank You for those who have dedicated their lives to this tremendous cause, keeping it very much alive so that those who view abortion as a viable option since its legalization in 1973, will come to realize that Your Word is the first and final authority on life, not the laws of our day.

Bless those who speak today, those who march, and those who work among pregnant girls and women who are presently in the very midst of making a life or death decision regarding their unborn child. We also pray for those who made the wrong choice to abort, that they may find Your enduring grace that brings healing and restoration. In many instances, You have used their troubling experience to be an influencing voice for others to make a right choice. We commit the Pro-Life cause to You this day, in Jesus' name.  Amen.

Old Windmill Farm sleigh ride 1/18/18
Yesterday between chaplain visits in eastern Lancaster County we visited our friends Jesse and Anna Ruth on the Old Windmill Farm and took a horse-drawn sleigh ride. This sleigh was on the farm when the Lapps moved there. It's pretty old first belonging to Jesse's grandmother.

Old Windmill Farm sleigh ride 1/18/18 (Click to enlarge)
Dashing through the snow,
In a one-horse open sleigh
O'er the fields we go,
laughing all the way.
See our short video which includes a segment of the children riding the sleigh to school yesterday.
(Click on photo to enlarge)

Pot bellied pig with one day old piglets 1/18/18
The newest life on the farm are some pot-bellied piglets born the day before. One piglet was pink but did not survive. I tried to get a more flattering photo of the sow but I just couldn't get around the big belly no matter which angle I held the camera!

Brooksyne with one day old Pot-bellied piglet 1/18/18
Farm girl Brooksyne had no trouble holding this piglet while it squawked after its temporary removal from its mama and milk supply. Brooksyne thinks this one would make a cute pet, but we quickly dismissed that idea. Two dogs and a cat is about all we can handle. Certainly not enough yard or land for a piglet, goat, chickens or anything else that makes noise, needs to be fed or clean-up required afterwards. So we just have to get our "animal fix" when visiting the Old Windmill Farm.

Brooksyne with one day old Pot-bellied piglet 1/18/18
Most humans grow old(er) before our faces wrinkle - not baby piglets born with wrinkled snouts!

Edisonville Road farm, Lancaster County, PA 1/18/18 (Click to enlarge)
This farm is along Edisonville Road. Notice the Sight and Sound Theater in the background. This is the single top tourist attraction in Lancaster County. They have a special show this year we look forward to attending; the greatest rescue story of all time. Video
(Click on photo to enlarge)

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"A Moving Pro-Life Speech by Senator James Lankford"  Video  This is the video clip referred to in the opening paragraph, an extremely thoughtful perspective. 5:46

In 2013 we went down to the "March For Life" together (Washington is only a little over 100 miles south of us). In this Daily Encouragement post we share some photos from that trip.

"March For Life"

Some Pro-Life songs:

"Meant To Be"
 Video  Ryan Scott Bomberger  Ryan, who spoke at the rally several years ago, has a remarkable testimony of being conceived through rape. Watch the video if you want to see how God can raise up one from such horrible circumstances and use Ryan for His glory.

"Everything To Me"
 Video  Mark Schultz  When Mark Schultz wrote the song "Everything to Me," the story of a young mother choosing to place her newborn baby into the care of an adoptive family, he had more than just a pro-life sentiment in mind.
He had his life in mind. Because that young mother was his mom. (This was the song playing that we mentioned in one of the captions above.)

"Those Who Never Were"  Video  Lindsey Thompson

"Sanctity of Life"
 Video  Musician not specified but beautiful song!

"Let Them Be Little"
 Video  Billy Dean

"Give me A Chance"
 Karl Kohlhase

Sleigh Ride on the Old Windmill Farm  Video

Finally today:
Everett 1/18/18
Yesterday afternoon we ran into Everett and Linda Dewald at Costco. For over 61 years Everett worked as a machine operator at Val-Co, one of the companies we visit weekly, and finally retired in 2013. He's now in his eighties and still seems to have more energy than Brooksyne and me. He has a consistently pleasant disposition who is always a joy to be around.

Finally today 2:
Dave Zuchelli is a friend we first met shortly after starting a church in northern PA in the late seventies. He went on to be a preacher and we recall exchanging pulpits with him when he served a Methodist circuit of four churches. (He got a good deal on those Sundays, preaching once while I preached 4 times!) He now has a weekly blog with some interesting material and the email message received early this morning struck me as pertinent not only on the topic at hand but in a general way. Read "Excluding The Divine" here.

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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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