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

Join our email list!
About Us     ListenListen to these messages    Archives

Mobile users: Visit Daily Encouragement on your mobile browser, hit "Add to home screen" or "Add page shortcut." This creates an instant Daily Encouragement App!

Donate to Daily Encouragement Net

Search Daily Encouragement
A new message is updated most weekdays usually by Noon Eastern Time (USA).
(Click refresh or reload for current message)

<Previous message                  Next message

Monday, March 27, 2023

Central Market flowers
Given a choice, which bouquet would you select from this assorted variety of beautiful flowers displayed at Central Market?
Click on photo to enlarge

"The Peril Of Backsliding"

Message summary: Today we consider a particular danger in backsliding.

Listen to our message on your audio player.

“Although our sins testify against us, O LORD, do something for the sake of Your Name. For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against You” (Jeremiah 14:7).

Yesterday we drove up to the Lehigh Valley to visit the church where my nephew is Pastor. On the way home we stopped and ate lunch with my brother and his wife along with their oldest daughter and her husband.

CloverleafI had an experience driving on a four lane limited access highway that in turn prompts a memory followed by what I hope will be a spiritual lesson for our readers today!

We entered the busy highway on a cloverleaf type exchange (RT 22 and RT 33). As I was picking up speed I noticed a car in the shoulder driving backwards toward our car. I assume the driver had missed the exit and rather than safely driving ahead a few miles to turn around he was "saving time" by rather speedily backing up, swerving a bit into my lane.

This can be extremely dangerous especially on a busy highway. Small changes to the steering in reverse can lead to a pendulum effect which will result in losing control.

I learned this 30 years ago on a very non-busy highway in mountainous northern PA known as the Quehanna Highway. After climbing a long grade from the valley the engine in our car blew. There was virtually no traffic on the road so I decided to back down the mountain, though Brooksyne warned me of the potential danger. When driving in reverse steering is very sensitive and it's easy for the car to get away from you. I was struggling to keep control but very unwisely proceeded till it all went haywire and I veered off the road striking a guardrail which kept us from plunging into a mountain stream. (If the blown engine didn't total the car this sure did!)

I consider a spiritual lesson here in regard to the peril of backsliding.

"The word 'backslide', in a Christian context, implies movement away from Christ rather than toward Him. A backslider is someone who is going the wrong way, spiritually. He is regressing rather than progressing. The backslider had at one time demonstrated a commitment to Christ or maintained a certain standard of behavior, but he has since reverted to old ways. Backsliding may manifest itself in several ways, e.g., dropping out of church, losing fervor for the Lord, walking away from a ministry or a family, or falling back into old habits." (from gotquestions.org)

The word backslide is used infrequently in the Bible in the Proverbs and prophets but the concept is all though the Bible. Today we will consider our daily verse from Jeremiah, especially his candid confession, "For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you”.

Jeremiah lived during the years immediately prior to Israel’s destruction and captivity in Babylon. The spiritual and physical conditions were horrific. God’s judgment fell not only on the idolaters but also upon His own people (read Lamentations 2)*. Jeremiah pleaded with the people to repent and turn to God and earnestly prayed as expressed in the daily Scripture verse.

Jeremiah did not argue against the basis of God’s judgment but readily acknowledged the sins that were an inarguable witness against the character of God’s people. He appealed to God’s mercy based on His sinless character and for His honor and glory.

Like driving in reverse one has a lot less control than he thinks he has when choosing to backslide. One may think "I have this sinful rebellion under control and will only go so far" but very quickly he or she loses control and the rebellious spirit takes charge.

A much better outlook is expressed by the apostle Paul. One that we should all follow: "But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:13,14).

Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)

Stephen and Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, if we search our hearts we too will cry out with Jeremiah, "Our sins testify against us". Our behavior reflects the inner desires of our hearts and all too often it does not reveal God-like character. Help us to heed the warnings of Scripture regarding backsliding, to listen to the Spirit at work within us showing us the way to keep walking the paths of righteousness. Worthless pursuits, straying affections, or wasteful energy can so easily lead us astray from the narrow path laid out before us. We want to seek first Your kingdom and Your righteousness so that we will honor and glorify Your name in that which we do and that which we think upon. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

*Brooksyne's Note:  I added the asterisk so that I might comment on the potential fallout of one's backslidden condition. Just as the Scripture comments, "God’s judgment fell not only on the idolaters but also upon His own people" I also consider the innocent family members, the church body and others who are greatly affected by the sinful behavior of one's backslidden condition. "No one lives unto himself" is a verse that applies here and I believe there are times that if a person who is preparing to walk away from God realizes the impact his or her actions will have on others it will help to steer them away from such ungodly thinking. The consequences of one's choice is also consequential to those they love the most, and it can be one of the deterrents to keep us on the right track, seeking to find peace with God rather than strategize with the enemy of our soul, whose sole ambition is to wreak havoc and destroy our soul.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Yet Not I But Through Christ In Me"  Click to listen on YouTube  CityAlight

Bill at Lancaster Pie and Coffee
After a chaplain visit we went into the city Friday morning to visit Bill, a friend of ours, who has recently opened Lancaster Pie and Coffee downtown. We had a wonderfully tasty pie. The photo does no justice to the attractive and appealing display of the pies in the showcase. We thoroughly enjoyed a pie sized for two made of biscoff pie crust with biscoff cheesecake topped with cherry pie filling. We are praying for Bill's new business to keep him busy making lots of irresistible pies in Lancaster City.

Central Market interior
While downtown we walked through Central Market established in 1730 and the oldest continuously operating farmer's market in the US.
Click on photo to enlarge

Central Market Groff stand
The Groff family has been selling produce at the market since 1946. Mr. Groff has been working in this stand at Central Market since 1954. Wow, the year of Stephen's birth! We especially appreciate their witness for the Lord. A Groff family specialty is lettuce – with more than 14 varieties from which to choose all grown on their own farm! But we were also impressed that they grow their own mushrooms which he is holding before he bagged them up for us. They were delicious!
Click on photo to enlarge

Central Market Long's Horseradish
Among the most unique stands is Long's Horseradish. For five generations, the Long family has been handcrafting its now-famous horseradish – since 1902.

Buggy on overpass
As we were headed up to the Lehigh Valley yesterday morning to visit family and attend church we saw this Amish buggy crossing the overpass likely on the way to church as well.

Weber couple photo 7/3/22
About Us

"We want to encourage you daily in your walk with Christ!"

Personal Ministry Update

Sign up to receive our free

Daily Encouragement email!

(each weekday)

We respect your email privacy

To receive the "Daily Encouragement" each Monday-Friday use our sign-up form or this page to subscribe to our free email list. You can also subscribe to the Wordpress rss feed or through a Wordpress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the top right side after opening this page.)

We want to thank all who financially support 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 information about making a donation to our ministry see here.

In considering support we are so pleased when we hear from you, our readers, that our messages are a source of teaching and encouragement to you. We also urge you to consider the mission aspect of these daily teachings that are freely available and read by many all over the world.

 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 DonationIf you desire you can also 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, for international supporters, and for those who may not need an official receipt. You can also set up for recurring donations.    
Thank you,

Stephen & Brooksyne

Daily Encouragement on:  Daily Encouragement on LinkedInWordpress Daily Encouragement on iHeart radio iHeart radio

Permissions: Please feel free to pass on, reproduce and distribute any material on Daily Encouragement Net, in part or in whole, in any format, provided that you do not alter the wording in any way or charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. It is our desire to spread this material, not protect or restrict it. We do request that you keep the contact, copyright and subscription information intact.

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."

© Copyright 2023 Stephen C. & Brooksyne Weber - All Rights Reserved
Daily Encouragement Net - 495 Kraybill Church Road - Mount Joy, PA 17552  USA


Contact Us

"Living securely today anchored in God's solid foundation"