A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Daily Encouragement on
Wednesday, January 30, 2019
Lancaster County farm in snow, mid-afternoon yesterday
(Click to enlarge)
"The Unplanned Journey"
Message summary: Our daily text we has a simple truth, "The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps".
Listen to our message on your audio player.
"The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps" (Proverbs 16:9).
It was not the path I would have chosen
I could see no hope from where I stood
Even though I knew what God had promised
I didn't see how He could work it for my good
Yet that road where pain was my companion
Took me to an unexpected place
And standing in the middle of the darkness
That was where my heart would learn to say
(Chorus below message)
Tim is a friend of ours whom we met several years ago. He is a solid, faith-filled believer who always conveys a joyful disposition and engages his listener in uplifting conversation. Earlier in his career he served as a pastor but for the last several years he has worked in the business world. Yet he remains active in the Lord's work with fill-in speaking opportunities as he consistently lets his light shine wherever he is.
Brooksyne saw a note on his Facebook page yesterday informing his friends that, following a series of tests, he has been diagnosed with ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig Disease). In his announcement he characteristically expressed his faith in the Lord with this statement, "Not the journey Julie and I had planned, but I know this hasnít been a surprise to God. Heís still in charge and thatís good enough for us."
Unplanned journeys are something we all experience in different ways and in different degrees of severity. We wisely plan ahead but have all experienced detours in life. Karen Peck in her outstanding song "I Choose Christ" writes, "It was not the path I would have chosen." We've all been on paths we would not have chosen.
Today we think of some of our friends who are on unplanned journeys, those who recently started and those who've been on their unplanned journey for many years:
We've heard Tim preach and have been so blessed by his messages so today I will use his faith statement, as written on his Facebook page, as an outline for a mini-sermon on unplanned journeys.
1) "Not the journey Julie and I had planned." Over 15 years ago I had a severe intestinal problem which required 4 surgeries and much distress over the course of a year. At that time I developed a phrase I have since used often, "We don't pick our problems and we don't schedule them". Many of us have been on detours in life that we would never have imagined, much less planned!
2) "But I know this hasnít been a surprise to God." That's a critically important understanding of the providence of God. Life is full of surprises, many pleasant but some not so much. None of them is a surprise to God so He is not thrown off-course in His guidance and will for our lives.
3) "Heís still in charge." We have often heard or used this as a pithy slogan but when you are in the midst of a fiery trial it's an outstanding faith statement. Indeed He is still in charge; He's still on His throne, not wavering in helplessness or anguish about anything.
4) "Thatís good enough for us." A hard road lies ahead for Tim, Julie, and their entire family. Of course they know that and it is our heartfelt prayer that the assurance expressed in Tim's faith statement endures no matter how severe the testing. May the Holy Spirit give them confidence and assurance all the way through.
In our daily text we have a simple truth, "The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps".
I choose Christ when everything around me says give up
I choose faith, I choose to trust
To believe He is good,
He'll come through like He said He would
Every time, oh, I choose Christ.
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Brooksyne's Note: My good friend, Rose, whom we included in the fourth example of one who has endured a tumultuous journey over the past year writes this in her Christmas letter: "We know and believe that God is faithful, He is our Deliverer and our Healer, and without Him we would not be here. We are far from being strong and able yet, but we rejoice in each new day and the blessings we have.
It's one thing to write such a victorious message in faith, but it carries even more weight from one who has gone through the fire, still recovering from the devastation it brought, and has remained faithful testifying to God's faithfulness along the way.
Early yesterday morning we began our travels in light snow to visit the employees at a company in rural Lebanon County.
By mid afternoon the snow was really coming down as we passed this farm in southeast Dauphin County.
(Click to enlarge)
At 4:12 in the late afternoon we had a power outage due to an accident up the road. Brooksyne was baking our lunch/dinner combo which was nearly done. So we sat in the dark in our living room while eating our ĺ baked potatoes and watched the birds gathered at the feeders through our front picture window. Ester went outside and played with Mollie who absolutely loves the snow! About 6:30PM the power was restored.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"I Choose Christ" Video Karen Peck & New River
"Even If" Video MercyMe
"Like A River Glorious" Video Smucker Family
Every joy or trial falleth from above,
Traced upon our dial by the Son of Love;
We may trust Him fully, all for us to do;
They who trust Him wholly find Him wholly true.
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