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 24, 2021

Shocks Mill Railroad Bridge
Early Sunday morning I (Stephen) took a solo ride on the Northwest Lancaster Rail Trail along the Susquehanna River between Marietta and Bainbridge. Being a train enthusiast I have wanted a photo of a train crossing this bridge (Shocks Mill Railroad Bridge) over the river. I was about 2 miles away when I heard a train on the other side of the river and rushed down for the photo but alas, I only caught the end of the train! Maybe next time.
Click on photo for larger view

"Is Jesus Worth It?"

Message summary: Today, and for the remainder of our life on this earth, regardless of what we providentially face, may we have an assurance of and boldness to declare, Jesus is worth it!

Listen to this message on your audio player.

"But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For His sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ" (Philippians 3:7,8).

On the way to church yesterday we were able to listen to the latter part of a sermon from another local church, Westminster Presbyterian, just up the road from the church we attend. The pastor shared an expression concerning suffering for Christ that intrigued both of us. Speaking on facing persecution he shared an illustration about a missionary who posed the question, "Is Jesus worth it?"

Commissioning prayerOnly a few minutes later we were seated in our pew at Calvary Church witnessing a mission commissioning service for Lance and Jessica Kanagy, a young couple going into missions work in Papau Indonesia*. They both grew up as missionary kids and Jessica is a fourth generation missionary. Lance will be serving as a pilot with Missionary Aviation Fellowship and they will both assist with Bible translation as well. The pastor spoke realism in his prayer for them especially in this phrase: "We know that as sent ones they will experience joys and sorrows, triumphs and disappointments, blessings and sufferings."

It occurred to us, now looking back on many years of ministry and our relatively minor sufferings for Christ, how appropriate this prayer was. May they and all of us be firmly convinced that regardless of what we face, Jesus is worth it!

In a context reflecting upon his sufferings for Christ and the Gospel Paul wrote of "the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord". Surpassing means outstanding, exceptional, rare, phenomenal, stellar, transcendent, unrivaled, incomparable, matchless, and the list of synonyms will go on and on forever in eternity! Hallelujah!

The Precept Austin Online commentary observes,

Knowing Christ is of incomparable worth--of more value than anything! The unfathomable riches of Christ (Ephesians 3:8) surpass the value of anything and everything. If you are struggling with angst and anxiety and worry over your earthly possessions (that are possessing you!), memorize Paul's great words in Philippians 3:7-10. Ask the Spirit of Christ to saturate and renew your mind with these profound truths regarding our greatest Possession, our priceless, incomparable Lord Jesus Christ. As you rest in this truth the Spirit will make the things of this earth grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace. Amen.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth
Will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

Today, and for the remainder of our life on this earth, regardless of what we providentially face, may we have an assurance of and boldness to declare, Jesus is worth it!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, what great assurance fills our hearts when we consider that nothing can separate us from Your love; no tribulation, distress, persecution, peril, or sword can take away the redemptive and sacrificial love that was delivered to us when You gave Your own Son to die for us. Even if the enemy seeks to conquer us by forcing us to forsake You we will overwhelmingly conquer him because we give our all to Jesus, even if it means laying down our life as millions and millions have done over the centuries because Jesus is worth it! Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

* Normally you read about Papau New Guinea which shares the same island as Papua Indonesia. (See here on Google map) For those who may be interested here's the commissioning service (video cued to that part of the service). We were impressed with the photos of Jessica's parents, grandparents and great-grandparents as they also served the Lord in missionary service.

"My Worth Is Not In What I Own"  Video  Shane & Shane

"Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus"  Video  Shane and Shane

"Worth"  Video  Jason Crabb

"All for Jesus" Video  Michael Lining  Brooksyne's note: This was written by Mary D. James. This hymn came to mind as we considered our message theme today, "Is Jesus worth it?" (It's also one of my favorite hymns going back to the beginning of my learning to play piano for our congregation.) Mary wrote "All For Jesus" as a New Year's resolution while writing a New Year's letter for 1871. She rejoiced in the effectiveness of her work for Jesus the previous year: "I have written more, talked more, prayed more, and thought more for Jesus than in any previous year, and have had more peace of mind."

One writer describes Mary this way: "In the Sunday school, the prayer meeting, and in private conversation, Salvation dwelt upon her tongue; none could pronounce the word more sweetly''. In requesting her friend to preach at her funeral Mary said: "Please don't exalt me, but exalt Christ. I am of no account; let Christ be all in all." What a wonderful example to all who follow Christ!

Sheep feeding in green pasture along Chickies Creek
Late Saturday afternoon these sheep were feeding in green pasture near Chickies Creek along the Junction Rail Trail.
Click on photo for larger view

Sheep laying in green pasture along Chickies Creek
It was over 90 yesterday afternoon and the same sheep were laying in the green pasture near Chickies Creek along the Junction Rail Trail.
Click on photo for larger view

Chickies Creek
Yesterday afternoon Chickies Creek looked appealing on a hot summer-like day!
Click on photo for larger view

Finally today:

Gummy bearsLast Friday we shared a photo of the newly hatched robin chicks in a nest over a porch light that included two unhatched eggs. This morning I observed all four chicks have hatched. We are wondering if the mother robin may be having trouble finding worms to feed them due to how dry it is. Worms seem pretty gross to us. Do you suppose they would enjoy gummy worms better?

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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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