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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Thursday, December 16, 2021

Christmas star on farm
Allan and Linda, our farming neighbors, display this large lighted star above their silos every Christmas.

"He Still Rewards The Diligent Seeker"

Message summary: If you have never placed your faith in Christ we invite you to do so right now. If you are a young believer or if you have followed Christ for many years, continue to diligently seek Him. Like the Magi, He still rewards the diligent seeker!

Listen to this message on your audio player.

“He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; His understanding has no limit” (Psalm 147:4,5). "Where is He who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him” (Matthew 2:2). "He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him" (Hebrews 11:6).

O star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light

A star is a common symbol at Christmas, likely based on the Bethlehem star the Magi saw. Our farmer neighbor places a star up above his silos as a demonstration of his faith. You can see it all the way from our house although it's about a mile away.

Today let us consider the Bethlehem star as well as all stars, something we can all see, but especially when you live out in the country as we do. It was overcast last night so I could not see the stars but I didn't worry that they had disappeared! Early this morning it had cleared a bit and sure enough I saw the stars before sunrise. On a clear night gazing into the starry heavens is a good reminder of the awesomeness of our God as the Psalmist experienced when he declared, “He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; His understanding has no limit”.

Since 1979 the International Star Registry has been selling naming rights for stars. Are you having trouble getting just that right Christmas gift?  I am a very poor shopper and struggle picking out the right gift for my wife.  Well, the International Star Registry has an easy gift giving option which allows you to name a star for a person and they will send them an official certificate! I could name one for Booksyne since the name is available. Whoever came up with this has a pretty good business model since the current estimate among astronomers is that there are a billion stars, and of course they’ll probably always be discovering a few million more. 

However there is a problem for the enterprising business entrepreneur who devised this scheme. The mighty God we serve who sent His only Son to this little planet earth has already taken care of naming all the stars.  He has determined their number and calls them each by name. 

He made all the stars (Genesis 1:16) and has them all accounted for. The prophet Isaiah in proclaiming the mighty greatness of God declares, “Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of His great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing” (Isaiah 40:26). This is the great God we serve today!

But during the birth of Christ God used a special star to guide the Magi to Bethlehem. There's been lots of speculation about the nature of this star but today let us just focus on the blessing that God provided a star to guide the earnest seekers. That's God's nature. One of the great promises of God is that "He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him" (Hebrews 11:6).

If you have never placed your faith in Christ we invite you to do so right now. If you are a young believer or if you have followed Christ for many years, continue to diligently seek Him. Like the Magi, He still rewards the diligent seeker!

Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father,  we draw near to You seeking You with a sincere heart as we study Your truths and apply them to our minds and hearts. We want to be diligent seekers of the Way, the Truth, and the Life, holding unswervingly to the hope we profess, for You are faithful in all You say and in all You do, and You still reward those who diligently seek you.  We bless You, Lord, and give thanks for the gift of Your Son, Jesus, who came to earth to save us from our sin. Amen.

Special Year-end Financial Appeal

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 you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. 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 from 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.

To donate directly online click here. This will open to a page that designates the offering to: STEPHEN & BROOKSYNE WEBER - 700001-237376 SERVING IN SPECIALIZED CHAPLAINCY

Make A Donation Please Note: If you desire you can donate directly through PayPal using this link. This will open to a page that states "Brooksyne Weber".  We keep this option available due to the familiarity, convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not need an official receipt. You can also set up for recurring donations. You also can use PayPal on this link. 

Thank you,

Stephen & Brooksyne

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"The Night Song"  Video  CityAlight

Christmas lights on farm
In our area local businesses and farm owners often use their buildings to display Christmas symbols such as this one. I am moved by the depiction of Bethlehem's star and Calvary's cross.

Resources for Christmas Celebrations
(We will leave these resources posted below our daily messages through Christmas)

Each year we share several online resources that we have used over the years. Perhaps they may be a blessing to you, your family or church during this Christmas season.

"In Remembrance of Me" pdf  This is a passion-filled Scripture reading for two adults. Brooksyne and I have used this reading with great receptivity during Christmas Eve services over the years.  We suggest, if possible, a musical background as the message is read. It is also a great lead-in to a Communion service. It should be thoroughly practiced and read with great feeling.  Here's a great Communion Hymn for Christmas (Video)

"When Christ Was Born" pdf This is an adaptation to the tune of "How Great Thou Art". It's a great song to sing as a congregation since most are familiar with and love the tune.

Responsive Christmas Scripture readings for church or family:
John 1:1-18  pdf
"O Come Let Us Adore Him"  pdf

My First Christmas In Heaven  This is a blessed reminder for all who lost a loved one this year.

Christmas Knowledge Test

We have also posted two Christmas carol quizzes here (scroll down).

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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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