Daily Encouragement Net
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.

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Monday, May 3, 2021

Stone Mill on Habecker Road
We regularly pass this stone mill on Habecker Road south of Mount Joy. There are many stone mills throughout Lancaster County that have been well maintained by thoughtful caretakers but no longer provide service as in the past. Where there's a mill there's a stream of water (this one along Chickies Creek) and the combination takes one's thoughts from the hustle and bustle of today to a slower pace of time. View this photo long enough and you can almost hear the faint sound of wagon wheels and the clip-clop of horses’ heels in the distance.
Click on photo to enlarge

"Yonder Sacred Throng"

Message summary: Today we consider that eventful moment when we will begin singing God's eternal praises with the blessed eternal "yonder sacred throng"!

Listen to this message on your audio player.

"Because You were slain, and with Your blood You purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation" (Revelation 5:9,10).

Dennis ShellyIn our Adult Bible Fellowship (ABF) we are considering Christian persecution. The four week series is led by Dennis Shelly, a 40 year veteran missionary to Nigeria. He is using the Voice of the Martyrs' book "I Am N".* The purpose is not only to consider persecution in the church's long history but we are looking at the current examples of believers in Christ being persecuted for their faith. For me personally it provides an even greater purpose for arming myself for that which may come in my lifetime and helps me to fight the premise, "That can't happen here" or "it could never happen to me" or worse "I deserve a persecution-free life".

Last week we shared on our site a lesson titled "Embedded Rock" and considered places where people live under chronic persecution like "North Korea, Sudan and northeastern Nigeria and sadly many other places". A thoughtful reader from Nigeria named Sunday reminded me:

"Please, I want you to remember Nigeria (not just northeastern Nigeria), as the insecurity crisis has spread over the entire north, and is coming to the Southern parts now in your prayers, that God should remove the evil crushing rock ravaging our land and lives."

I had her petition on my heart yesterday in our church service as we sang "All Hail The Power Of Jesus' Name" especially when we got to the final verse:

Oh, that with yonder sacred throng
We at His feet may fall!
We’ll join the everlasting song,
And crown Him Lord of all!

The three words "yonder sacred throng" struck me in a special way although I have sung it many, many times. What colorful language in describing a future gathering when we will join all the redeemed in a "yonder sacred throng" and "join the everlasting song".
  • The yonder sacred throng will be comprised of the redeemed from all generations. When the lyrics to "All Hail The Power Of Jesus' Name" was written by Edward Perronet and first published in 1779, he was likely considering those who had gone before him in that great throng, from the earliest humans who placed their faith in God to his own contemporaries who recently entered glory. But do you suppose Perronet was also looking forward? Now, over 200 years have passed and many, many millions, likely billions, have been added to God's Kingdom. And they will continue to be added till the end comes!
  • The yonder sacred throng will be comprised of the redeemed "from every tribe and language and people and nation". Imagine the various worship styles blended together! Some churches are rather stiff and formal, with little emotion expressed. Others are very expressive and outwardly jubilant. Yesterday we sang "Waymaker" a song which originated in Nigeria but has been a blessing all over the world and sung in many languages. Below we post to a video of Nigerians singing it and what a blessing to see the exuberant joy in their faces.
  • The yonder sacred throng will be comprised of the redeemed who lived in a wide variety of circumstances here on earth; the very poor and not so poor; those with relatively easy lives and those who endured great trials; those who lived peaceful lives and those who endured horrific persecution. Some entered heaven beheaded and many from other forms of dreadful death.
Today let us resolve to stay faithful whatever circumstances we might face now or in the future and find spiritual strength to endure to the end, with the promise of one day singing God's praises with the yonder sacred throng!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, we choose to follow You faithfully on this side of glory until You bring to pass that climactic event when we will join the saints from every generation, from every tribe and nation. We will blend in one accord through music, praise, and worship in that yonder sacred throng to lift up the name of Jesus, to give unending thanks for all that You have done for us and for all that You have provided for us in our eternal dwelling place. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"All Hail The Power Of Jesus' Name"  Video  This appears to be from India or a similar country. Powerful!

"Waymaker"  Video  Sinach (Osinachi Kalu Okoro Egbu), who wrote the song. This power packed version is live in some type of huge Nigerian setting. I dedicate this song to Sunday and all of our other Nigerian readers.

"Waymaker"  Video  Calvary Church worship team from our service yesterday. (Comparatively rather subdued!)

"Chain Breaker"  Video  Zach Williams  "If you feel lost He's a waymaker" This is presented in dramatic form with a lady struggling with addiction and is very moving.

"Turn It Over"  Video  Zach Williams  Dedicated to those overcoming addictions

Newly hatched baby robins
Saturday we discovered our backyard robin's eggs had hatched!
Click on photo to enlarge

Hungry baby robins
By Sunday they had already grown and were hungry!
Click on photo to enlarge

Robin with worm
Mother Robin has been busy gathering worms to feed her young. I wonder if she got any from the cluster of worms we discovered a few days ago and mentioned in Friday's message.
Click on photo to enlarge

Ed, a regular reader, sent this interesting note regarding the photo: To us it may look gross, but it really is fellowship to them. Earthworms form clumps of balls together in compost or when out in the open. One of the reasons is because this is their form of communication. The study has been published in the journal of Ethology (study of animal behavior) mentioning that worms use ‘touch’ to communicate and influence each other's behavior. (No mask mandate required in the ethology kingdom - editor's observation)

Robin with worm
Don't worry, I'm not gonna take the worm this mom worked hard for to provide food her hungry babies!

Finally today:

Lancaster County traffic
We have some unusual traffic here in Lancaster County!
(This is a sprayer)

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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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