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Thursday, June 18, 2020

Union Canal Tunnel (click to enlarge)
A bike ride this week along a new section of the Lebanon Valley Rail Trail took us to the the Union Canal tunnel, the oldest transportation tunnel in the USA!
Click to enlarge

"Full of God's Creatures"

Message summary: Scripture teaches that there was nothing but God and that God, by means of His incalculable wisdom and infinite power, alone brought the universe (all matter, energy, time, and space) into existence from nothing. Have you got that all figured out?

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

"How many are your works, O Lord in wisdom You made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures” (Psalm 104:24).

Camping with firefliesTwo boys from the city were out in the country on their very first camping trip. That night the mosquitoes were biting so badly that the boys tried to hide in their sleeping bag to keep from being devoured. When they saw some lightning bugs, one boy said to the other, "We might as well give up, they're coming at us with flashlights!"

FireflyIn our area the lightning bugs (AKA fireflies) are lighting up the dark skies. The other night I laid
on our oversized deck swing preparing to fall asleep. I watched their silent display as the back yard began to glow with lots of matchmaking. Usually male fireflies fly around and flash their light to let females know their whereabouts. If a female is interested, she will send out a brief flash as a reply to the males. The firefly, although not mentioned in the Bible, is one of God's many creatures testifying to the truth of the phrase in our daily text, "the earth is full of Your creatures".

This is my Father’s world, and to my listening ears
All nature sings, and 'round me rings the music of the spheres.
This is my Father’s world: I rest me in the thought
Of rocks and trees, of skies and seas;
His hand the wonders wrought.

Hebrews 11:3The term "ex nihilo" is a Latin phrase meaning "out of nothing". The ancient Nicene Creed states, "We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible".

Scripture teaches that there was nothing but God and that God, by means of His incalculable wisdom and infinite power, alone brought the universe (all matter, energy, time, and space) into existence from nothing. Have you got that all figured out?

We observe and proclaim with the Psalmist, “How many are Your works, O Lord in wisdom You made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures” (104:24).  Let us make a renewed commitment this day using the words of the Psalmist, “I will sing to the LORD all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. May my meditation be pleasing to Him, as I rejoice in the LORD” (Psalm 104:3,34). Won't you join us?

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, in Psalm 5 the Psalmist directs His prayer to You: “O Lord, in the morning will I direct my prayers to You and I will look to You with expectation.” Though You neither slumber nor sleep and certainly have no need for an alarm clock, we know it brings delight to Your ears to hear Your children vocalizing their praises first thing upon awakening to a new day. Your steadfast love never ceases, Your mercies are unending, and Your creation abounds in originality, wonder, beauty, and power. We declare our praises to You, Faithful Father, as You lead us in paths of righteousness. For You bless the godly, O Lord, and surround them with Your shield of love and protection. Amen.

Today's opening story reminds me of another "city boy" story from about twenty years ago.

When we moved from New England to Lancaster County we rented an old farmhouse north of Mount Joy for the first year before we bought our current home. The farmhouse overlooked a covered bridge over Little Chiques (Chickies) Creek. Up the creek a bit from the bridge was a densely wooded area with a spooky looking very old truck parked in it, probably right where it broke down.

Yvette and her son, Joey, came to visit us from our former church in New England. Joey was going through a very rebellious teen season. He was a city kid unfamiliar with the country and I was and still can be a bit of a rascal so I decided to issue a challenge to him.

It was very dark and I challenged street tough Joey to go into those dark woods on Risser Mill Road where the truck was parked and take a photo from inside the cab. He took up the challenge and was gone for quite a while. When he finally came back he told us he found the truck and took a photo, but we only had a film camera in 2001 so we had to wait till we had the film developed to see the proof. Sure enough he was telling the truth! I sure wish I could find that photo now!

Joey is now a pastor in Philadelphia and is married with 2 children!

Joe Cullen, Reading, PA 5/9/18
Joe Cullen holding his oldest daughter at a Minister's Conference several years ago.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Psalm 5"  Video  Chuck Girard

"This Is My Father's World"  Video  The Collingsworth Family

The Lebanon Valley Rail Trail

This week we rode on two portions of the Lebanon Valley Rail Trail

Lebanon Valley Rail Trail (click to enlarge)
Beginning at the Colebrook trail-head we had a long, mild but steady 3 mile grade up to beyond Mount Gretna. The grade was barely discernible and since we have not ridden this trail in several years I had forgotten about the grade. I couldn't understand why it was so hard to pedal. I even checked to see if the brakes were sticking. What a blessing to reach the summit and then coast easily for awhile. But alas we had that grade coming back!
Click to enlarge

Cornwall railroad bridge (click to enlarge)
A ride through the old iron railroad bridge in Cornwall. On the way back we sat at one of the benches and met an interesting older couple. They live in Cornwall Manor, a retirement community near the trail. In their 80's they remain very active and earlier that day had ridden 18 miles on the trail. Amazingly, they told us they log their miles on their bikes, and over the past twelve years, they've biked 20,000 miles with their dog, Sadie, in the back in a small crate.
Click to enlarge

Cornwall railroad bridge (click to enlarge)
The Cornwall iron railroad bridge from below on our way to work on Tuesday.
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Lebanon County root beer barrel
Along the Lebanon Valley Trail walkers and bikers pass the giant Lebanon County root beer barrel. Video

Late Tuesday morning we rode a new section of the trail north of Lebanon which is beside the Union Canal. Here's a video of a drone in the tunnel with some backround.
Click to enlarge

Finally today:

Seyfert Orchards sales barn (click to enlarge)
The Seyfert Orchards sales barn is now open in Lebanon. We checked and they will soon have Brooksyne's favorite fruit for making jams, sour cherries!
Click to enlarge

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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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