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Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Neff's Mill Covered Bridge, Lancaster County, PA  5/27/19 (Click to enlarge)
Neff's Mill Covered Bridge
(Click to enlarge)

"Full Assurance Of Faith"

Message summary: May the Lord fill your heart with His blessed assurance today regardless of what you are going through.

Listen to our message on your audio player.

"Let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith" (Hebrews 10:22).

Over the last several months we have periodically mentioned our friend Tim, who was diagnosed with ALS this last January. He continues to share his journey on his Facebook page and recently posted this message of the blessed assurance he has in Christ.

"Several people have recently been asking how they should pray for me. Amid the rapidly declining use of my body I have come to this conclusion. While having God physically heal my body would be a great miracle (of which He is quite capable), being taken to heaven is an even better miracle. Then I get to see my Lord and family and friends who are already there. Join me in praying for the better miracle. And when that prayer is granted please don't mourn but celebrate that I'm home, where I will be waiting to welcome you someday."

Tim is enduring a trial he neither expected nor ordered but is placing his life in the care of God and this brings blessed assurance. Blessed assurance can be a testimony we all share as we especially consider:

    * The provisions of God in our past,
    * The presence of God in our present and
    * The promises of God in our future.

A reflection on these truths indeed leads to blessed assurance!

"Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of the Spirit, washed in His blood."

The message from this hymn text is one that is such a blessing to hide deep in our hearts; a musical expression of praise and glory to God for His work of salvation in our lives. Fanny Crosby writes about the assurance Christ gives us due to His redemptive work in our lives here on earth and a foretaste of the glorious rejoicing that will take place through all eternity.

In today's text from the book of Hebrews we read a wonderful phrase, "Full assurance of faith". What a great blessing this full assurance is. Assurance, which not a commonly used word apart from theology, comes from the word assure which in turn comes from the word, sure. It speaks of the certainty of our salvation "with no doubt as to our acceptance when coming to God by the blood of Christ" (Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary). Clarke's commentary states, "Being fully persuaded that God will accept us for the sake of his Son, and that the sacrificial death of Christ gives us full authority to expect every blessing we need."

There is surely a sound Biblical basis for Fanny Crosby's song. It's one of the greatest blessings of life to have a full assurance of faith. May the Lord fill your heart with His blessed assurance today regardless of what you are going through.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, as heirs of Your salvation, we have been purchased with the sacrificial blood of Your precious Son, Jesus. He gave His all that we might be saved from the eternal consequences of sin and have our names written in the Lamb's Book of Life. We have the blessed assurance that we are redeemed from sin and saved for eternity in heaven. Thank You for such wondrous love and abundant provision on our behalf. Amen.

Yesterday I joined our friends Jim and Dorothy Schmidt for lunch and then a visit to the Old Windmill Farm and then we drove around scenic Lancaster County. Brooksyne is scheduled to return from her trip to see family this evening!

Old Windmill Farm horse-drawn hayride, 5/27/19
Tourists from all over the world enjoy visiting the Old Windmill Farm and taking a horse-drawn hayride.

Jim and Dorothy Schmidt  5/27/19
Jim and Dorothy enjoying ice cream at the Down On The Farm creamery near Strasburg, PA.

Down On The Farm creamery, Lancaster County, PA  5/27/19 (Click to enlarge)
The creamery conveniently offers a drive through window.

Lancaster County barn, PA  5/27/19
A Lancaster County bank barn

Lancaster County garden, PA  5/27/19 (Click to enlarge)
The gardens in our area look beautiful with all the rain.
(Click to enlarge)

Lancaster County rural road, PA  5/27/19
It was a beautiful day to mosey around the rural roads of Lancaster County!

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Blessed Assurance"  Video  Walkers to Heaven

Finally today:
Fanny Crosby tombstone
Brooksyne at the Fanny Crosby tombstone in Bridgeport, Connecticut

Fanny Crosby is surely one of the most prolific hymn writers in the history of the church. I am sure most of our readers regardless of language, nationality or even musical taste have sung her hymns such as "I am Thine O Lord", one of her many well-known hymns. Other hymns you may recognize are "All the Way My Savior Leads Me", "Close to Thee", "To God be The Glory", "Pass Me Not O Gentle Savior, and so many others still sung in many churches.

Fanny Crosby is buried at the Mountain Grove Cemetery along I-95 in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The cemetery was designed by the famous circus founder PT Barnum. In fact his monument is very near that of Fanny Crosby's.

On a small, very weathered stone at the foot of the grave that we assume to be the original tombstone we read these words, "Aunt Fanny - She hath done what she could."  Although blinded shortly after her birth she faithfully served the Lord. She overcame her disability to leave a lasting impact for Christ. She once shared this remarkable outlook, "It seemed intended by the blessed providence of God that I should be blind all my life, and I thank him for the dispensation. If perfect earthly sight were offered me tomorrow I would not accept it. I might not have sung hymns to the praise of God if I had been distracted by the beautiful and interesting things about me."

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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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