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Friday, December 27, 2019

Parachute plane 12/26/19
Yesterday morning we saw this flying contraption in the field across from our house!

"True Riches"

Message summary: Today let us consider true riches.

Note: We are both not feeling well today so we did not prepare a podcast.

"O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!" (Romans 11:33). In Him (Christ) we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished upon us" (Ephesians 1:7).

Yesterday I had four tons of diamonds delivered. Well, they're not quite diamonds but they are very close. A diamond is 100% carbon (some sources say 99.95 with trace elements), a solid form of the element carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal structure called diamond cubic. Of course diamonds are prized and very valuable.

My delivery was anthracite coal which is over 90% pure carbon but far, far less valuable than a genuine diamond. If my 4 ton bin was full of diamonds it would have a value of far more than the $840.00 I paid yesterday. I tried to determine how much my bin would have if it had 4 tons of real diamonds but will leave that to a math whiz. I am very certain it would be a lot of money!

An old gospel song comes to mind that begins,

My Father is rich in houses and lands,
He holdeth the wealth of the world in His hands!
Of rubies and diamonds, of silver and gold,
His coffers are full, He has riches untold.

How rich are you today? When it comes to worldly wealth we surely differ considerably, since these messages are delivered all over the world to followers of Christ in a variety of circumstances.

How we perceive our worldly wealth is quite relative. The Forbes 400 richest are all billionaires. Most of us would consider our wealth a pittance compared to those on that list. But we might also be surprised to learn that most of us are in the top 10% of the wealthiest people on earth. An interesting website (I'll share the link below) allows you to type in your annual income or total assets and see just how you rate in comparison to the rest of the world.

The Forbes list reveals the tendency to gage how rich we are by looking upwards at those who have far more of this world's goods which can make us feel poor. Rather we should look around and consider the many who have far, far less than us for a proper perspective on just how wealthy we really are.

Riches can describe wealth, money, possessions, or abundance. Alexander White wrote "Many today chase the false rabbits of success: status, luxury, reputation and material possessions. In the quest to 'have it all,' our lives often lack real meaning and purpose".

But better yet by far is to focus on the greatest source of wealth available to us regardless of where we live, the language we speak, our ethnic background or the degree of our earthly material wealth.

"O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!" (Romans 11:33). In our daily text Paul is obviously not speaking of worldly riches but rather he is speaking of spiritual riches similar to the sentiment he expressed in Ephesians 1:7, "In Him (Christ) we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished upon us." Worldly riches are visible to others while spiritual riches are embedded in the believing human heart and there may be no correlation between the two.

The first eleven chapters of Romans is steeped with deep theological teaching that Paul has recorded as a foundation for understanding our life in Christ. He then moves from the theological to the practical in the next section (Romans 12) as he gives guidelines for living as a redeemed people in a sin-filled world.

But before he closes the theological section he seems to step back and examine God's work and makes the powerful acclamation in our daily verse, "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!" Many commentators consider this verse and the next three a Doxology (an expression of praise often sung to God). In my personal study I try to read it aloud as Paul might well have expressed it, particularly in light of the material that precedes it.

We will close our message today with this prayer of praise to God for the wisdom and foreknowledge of His incomprehensible plan for our lives. He governs the universe and our lives in His perfect wisdom and vast knowledge. We cannot fully understand but we can fully trust His plan and provision for our lives each day. To do so is to experience true wealth!

Iím a child of the King,
A child of the King:
With Jesus my Savior,
Iím a child of the King.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, I am in awe of the depth of Your riches, both of wisdom and knowledge! How unsearchable are Your judgments and unfathomable Your ways! For who has known Your mind, Lord, or who has been Your counselor? Or who has ever given to You, Father, that You should repay him? For from You and through You and to You are all things. It is to You, our loving and eternal Father, that we give praise and glory forever. Amen.

(Romans 11:33-36 slightly adapted for prayer)

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We want to thank all who have financially supported our ministry this past year (and some for many years!). We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support at this time but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Like many ministries, we typically see a spike in giving at the end of the year for which we are most thankful.

Our ministry labor is comprised of approximately half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive compensation. Each of these ministries essentially is the same as a part-time job (20+ hours weekly) for each of us. Our goal for many years is that each would provide half of our ministry expenses and income.

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Make A DonationPlease Note: We also provide this easy option due to the convenience, for international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official tax deductible receipt. Click here to send an offering using PayPal. This will open to a page that states "Brooksyne Weber"

Thank you,

Stephen & Brooksyne

Today for the chronically curious (like me) I share some photos of our coal delivery.

The empty bin is beside my utility barn. Ken Pierce, a friend of ours made it 17 years ago shortly after we moved. The previous home owner had a small coal bin in the garage which, although convenient to the stove, only held about 2 months worth of coal. When we converted this area to a room for my Mom and now our home office we needed another place to store the coal. I carry the coal into the house in 5 gallon buckets.

Robert Mellinger and coal truck 12/26/19
Robert and his twin brother Richard inherited the business from their dad, Elvin. The truck bed is almost 60 years old. The twins are both bachelors and very colorful. Their office looks like it's from the 1930's. I stopped in last week to order coal and told them I wanted new coal. Another customer recommended used coal since it had been tested!

Coal truck unloading coal 12/26/19
The truck lifts high to gravity feed the coal down a chute.

Unloading coal to bin 12/26/19
Loading coal down a chute from the truck then up a conveyor into the bin is messy so Robert placed a tarp to catch the splattering coal.

Full coal bin 12/26/19
This full bin (4 tons) should last till February 2021

Coal stove
Our coal stove is in our lower level family room. During the winter it goes a long way to heating our entire home although we also have a heat pump which supplements it.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Child Of The King"  Video  Gaither Vocal Band

"More Precious Than Silver"  Video  Lynn Deshazo

Global Rich List  Compare your income and assets with the rest of the world.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLEģ, 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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