Daily Encouragement Net
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Conestoga River, Lancaster County PA (click to enlarge)
Today we are joining much of the country with a blast of cold weather and a snow storm with several inches thus far this morning, certainly nothing like Buffalo NY!
The photo above is the Conestoga River in Lancaster County, PA
Taken by our friend Mike Book

(Click on photo to enlarge)

"The Blessing of Trust"

Message summary: Let’s choose not to walk in “fear and distress” as Jacob initially did but in faith and dependency upon Almighty God as we seek to trust in the LORD with all our heart, and lean not on our own understanding; in all our ways acknowledge Him, confident that He shall direct our paths.”

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“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5,6).

Do you naturally trust in the Lord for all your needs or do you have to go through a time of testing to get to a place of complete trust? I have often identified with Jacob who had to go through a time of testing to get to a place where he fully trusted the Lord to direct his paths. Let's consider his story today.

He wrongly stole his twin brother’s birthright and fled to Haran to save his life. Esau, in a rage, had threatened to kill him for his wrongdoing. Twenty years later God told Jacob: “Go back to the land of your fathers and I will be with you” (Genesis 31:3). In obedience Jacob began the arduous journey to his homeland with a stockpile of livestock, menservants, maid servants, worldly goods, two wives, twelve sons and one daughter.

Obeying God is one thing (and very important); but trusting Him is another matter. The Bible describes Jacob being filled with “great fear and distress” in response to hearing that his brother was coming to meet him, along with four hundred of his men
(Genesis 32:7). Have any of you ever experienced fear and distress? (Probably most at one time or another!)

Jacob began to strategize and rearrange his entourage of animals, servants, and family members in fear that an attack was being planned. In his great fear and distress Jacob leaned upon his own understanding instead of trusting in God.

But God knew all along that Esau’s heart had softened and he would welcome his brother’s arrival. “But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept” (Genesis 33:4). 

God was working behind the scenes and beyond Jacob’s vision. That’s why he spoke to Jacob about moving back to his homeland. Satan plotted in Jacob’s mind, but God planned in reality a great family reunion to take place. God has always been in the business of reconciliation, most especially revealed in the death of Christ who reconciled us to God.

After Jacob and Esau reconciled, after Jacob wrestled with God, after he doubted God’s protection, after he maneuvered his original plan, Jacob and all his entourage finally arrived within sight of his homeland of Canaan. There Jacob built an altar and called it El Elohe Israel meaning "Mighty is the God of Israel"Finally he trusted God to bring to pass that which He had laid upon his heart.

Proverbs 3:5,6“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” This wonderful Proverb has three commands followed by the wonderful promise, "He shall direct your paths". Our responsibility is to trust. We can be absolutely assured that God will keep His promise! 

We are all called to:
1)  Trust in the Lord with all my heart.
2)  Lean not on my own understanding.
3)  Acknowledge Him in all my ways.

For me it’s not at all hard to understand the meaning of these three clauses, but consistently applying them is another matter! Let’s choose not to walk in “fear and distress” as Jacob initially did, but in faith and dependency upon Almighty God as we seek to trust in the LORD with all our heart, and lean not on our own understanding; in all our ways acknowledge Him, confident that He shall direct our paths.”

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus
O for grace to trust Him more

Be encouraged today, Hebrews 3:13

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Jesus, when I lean on my own understanding I fall prey to the human nature and limit the work of the supernatural. But when I trust You with all my heart I leave no room for second guessing. Today I want to acknowledge Your presence in every area of my life…family, work, relationships, my alone times. You will bring to pass the divine plans You have for me as You direct me in all my ways when I walk in Your ways. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Tis So Sweet"  Watch on YouTube  Shane & Shane

"Every Step"   Watch on YouTube    CityAlight

"Promises"   Watch on YouTube  Aaron Moses

Frontyard snow view
Here's the view out our front window early this morning. This is the most snow cover we've had this season. We have postponed our chaplain visits to Lebanon County until tomorrow. Tomorrow is forecast sunny but even colder temps!

Backyard snow view
Here's the view out our new window in our upstairs bedroom. This window needed to be relocated due to the peak of the roof to our new addition which can be seen in the foreground. The view is not as spacious or beautiful as the two windows we had to close off, but it was necessary for our new addition. We are hoping to have the two rooms inspected today by the township building inspector so we can move into our first floor bedroom/bath.

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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 and a variety of other versions.

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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