"Beauty" swan among reeds
“Beauty” the snow white swan on a friend’s pond.
“The Man Who Went Away Sad”

Message Summary: I wonder what happened to the rich young man. For sure he got older! Did he maintain his temporal wealth or exchange it for his eternal soul? Upon his death, did he leave behind a great store of riches that moth, rust, and decay destroyed or did he receive the eternal treasures God has laid up in heaven for all who choose to follow Him.  What preparations have you made about your eternal future?

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth” (Matthew 19:22).

I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold;
I’d rather be His than have riches untold;
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands.
I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hand

The other day in the course of chaplain work I saw a young man walking away from the company during a break. I greeted him and asked where he was going. “I’m going to buy some lottery tickets so I can strike it rich”, he informed me. I suppose to many I would be “moralizing”, but I was forthright in telling him that he was making a poor choice.

The “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” intrigue many with stories of extravagance. Of course it’s essentially a facade since we really don’t know how happy the rich and famous really are and by many accounts for many it’s not all it’s hyped up to be. Apart from spiritual riches available to all who turn to Christ many of the best things in life are not dependent on wealth such as a satisfying marriage, children and grandchildren who bring you joy, a satisfying and productive job, as well as enduring friendships.

Still dies quoteI saw a t-shirt in church that read, “He who dies with the most toys, still dies” which counters the original popular slogan, “He who dies with the most toys, wins.” Many of you have seen this bumper sticker which I’ve often seen on huge four-wheel drive pickups! Many live their lives as though this were true.

The daily verse is one of the most somber in the entire Bible and is a microcosm of the choices each of us make regarding our life’s focus. Will our focus be directed to earth’s immediate rewards such as wealth or to the Kingdom of God that promises future, eternal rewards that are incomparably better? In our text (context is Matthew 19:16-26) a rich young man had approached Jesus as a seeker, asking, “What good thing must I do to get eternal life?”  Jesus summed up discipleship when He called him to sell his possessions and follow Him.

Sad rich young rulerBut “he went away sad”. Why? After all, he was young, successful and had great wealth. What’s there to be sad about? Isn’t that what many aspire to as the source of happiness?

It seems to me that in his heart he knew he was making the wrong choice, but the grip of wealth was so great that he was captivated by it and narrowed his choices to those dictated by purse strings. Money cannot mend a broken heart nor can it fill the spiritual void that each of us is born with.

It’s interesting to me that the other two synoptic gospels also have this account, with each adding a significant detail. Mark’s account (10:17-22) tells us that “Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him.”  He loves each of us this day and evidence of this is seen in His steadfast love that never ceases. His manifold mercies are unending and renewed daily, for the believer as well as the unrighteous.

Crying manLuke’s account (18:18-27) provides an interesting detail: “When he had heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich.” Consider the contrasting adverbs that the rich young man became “very sad” because he was “exceedingly rich”.

Let’s go back to his initial question, “What good thing must I do to get eternal life?” Jesus answered him, but he, unlike Moses, chose “the pleasures of sin for a season” (Hebrews 11:25).

Still, today, for many there remains in one way or another a consideration of the economic impact of the decision to follow Christ. Although there is not a universal Biblical call for everyone to sell all their possessions, Christ clearly calls each of His followers to a life of commitment and sacrifice in following Him.

I wonder what happened to the rich young man. For sure he got older! Did he maintain his temporal wealth or exchange it for his eternal life? Upon his death, did he leave behind a great store of riches that moth, rust, and decay destroyed or did he receive the eternal treasures God has laid up in heaven for all who choose to follow Him.  What preparations have you made about your eternal future?

I’d rather have Jesus
Than to be the king of a vast domain
Or be held in sin’s dread sway.
I’d rather have Jesus than anything
This world affords today.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Jesus, it’s clear in Scripture that the attainment of worldly riches can narrow a person’s vision to earth-sightedness. Their sight is fixed upon that which can be experienced only on this side of heaven. But You’ve called us to be farsighted in that we lay down anything that hinders our vision of that which is yet to come in the eternal realm. Our goals in this life reach beyond immediate reward and expand to treasures stored up in heaven. For those entrusted to riches on this side You’ve instructed to be good stewards and thereby further expanding the message of salvation to those far and near. All sacrifices made in this life will bring about abundant reward in the life to come. Help us to be faithful.  Amen.


"Beauty" swan with cygnets
Gene and Doris Wenger are our friends who have the pond with the swan couple, Buford and Beauty. Here’s a photo with Beauty and her baby swans. Baby swans are known as cygnets. Notice the large nest in the background. This pond is along Milton Grove Road north of Mount Joy.

Jeff with daughters at Marine Corps marathon 5/15/16
Jeff is a friend from one of the companies we visit as chaplains. He recently ran in a Marine Corp marathon and his daughters made these supportive signs. I don’t think he won (in the sense of coming in first) but he is sure a winner as a Dad!


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“I’d Rather Have Jesus”  Video  Dallas Holm

“Farther Along”  Video  Gaither Homecoming

“Farther Along”  Video   The Grascals  Really country bluegrass!


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

“Kill The Mouse!”

May 23, 2016

Bearded-tongue Iris at Rehoboth Beach 5/22/16
Jackie’s beautiful rain-splattered Bearded Tongue Iris
“Kill The Mouse!”

Message Summary: We do well to seriously heed the words of the Holy Scripture. What unwholesome or harmful matter(s) are you playing around with? We appeal to you, take decisive action and put it to death. Kill the mouse!

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry” (Colossians 3:5).

This last weekend we loaded our bikes with the intent of biking many miles on the bucolic trails of the Delaware shore near Rehoboth Beach and then on to Assateague Island in Maryland. It was beautiful when we left Friday afternoon but beginning Saturday morning we had rain from early morning until bedtime! We turned in hoping that we might awaken to a much nicer day Sunday morning though the rain-filled forecast was undeniable. Unfortunately it proved to be 100% accurate. Our wishful thinking began to evaporate with the steady stream of rainfall that fell outside the church walls where we gathered for worship yesterday morning.

Still a wee bit hopeful we joined friends for lunch, but as we left Cracker Barrel even our exhausted windshield wipers cried out, “Enough, already!” So we headed back to our “home away from home”, packed up quickly, and headed home yesterday afternoon. We still had a good time as we always do when we visit Rehoboth Beach. Our bikes got a super wash, though their only work-out was bouncing up and down on the rear bike rack as the van drove on uneven surfaces.

We stayed at a friend’s place which had been closed up through the winter.  When Brooksyne was making up the bed late Friday evening I heard a distinctive shriek and being married 40 years I immediately knew just what it was. She had pulled back the bed spread and discovered a large pile of acorns and other evidence of mice.

We were reluctant to inform our friends but decided they would want to know since more guests will follow over the summer months. They were grateful that we informed them and of course were embarrassed and apologized for our experience. They had just had a professional cleaning group come in a day or two before our arrival and expected that they had done a thorough job as they were hired to do. Being a reader of daily encouragement the owner chuckled as he elbowed me and said, “I suppose you’ll get a lesson out of this!” Indeed we have.  (He gives us permission to share this story!)

When we informed the homeowners they had a mouse problem they didn’t mess around but sprang into action to correct the problem. We determined the mice were probably coming in through a small crack in the front door seal so he is going to repair that. Within two hours of our notifying him of the problem he placed ultrasonic repellents at the electrical outlets and the next day set mouse traps, just in case the first strategy failed. He pulled out the “big guns” to once and for all eradicate the destructive little critter(s).

Likewise, this is the attitude we must have toward sin and we must heed the apostle Paul’s forthright words in our daily text: “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry” (Colossians 3:5).

We consider a friend who “played around” with a certain matter in his life. Initially it seemed harmless with few consequences. (Satan’s devices are always portrayed as “harmless” and he’s a master at masquerading or completely obscuring the consequences). But in time the matter grew until it became more and more gripping and eventually it captivated him and became a very destructive force in his life.

Spider webA man whose addictive habit was hindering his fellowship with God and hurting his Christian testimony prayed that God would forgive him for his addiction—but he didn’t stop sinning!

He is like the man who often went forward at the end of church services to kneel and pray, “‘Lord, take the cobwebs out of my life.’ One Sunday morning his pastor, tired of hearing the same old prayer, knelt beside him and cried out, ‘Lord, kill the spider!'”

It often takes radical action to break a sinful habit. We need to do more than ask God for cleansing each time we succumb to temptation. We must take whatever steps are needed to get the cobwebs out of our life. We must confess our sin and determine to be done with it. Then we must feed our mind with God’s Word and do all we can to stay away from the people, reading material, or places that tempt us to sin. That’s what Christ likely meant when He said, “If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out” (Matthew 5:29). Kill the mouse and you’ll get rid of the mouse droppings. Remember this important distinction: admitting the sin is no substitute for eradicating the sin.

We do well to seriously heed the words of the Holy Scripture. What unwholesome or harmful matter(s) are you playing around with? We appeal to you, take decisive action and put it to death. Kill the mouse!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, I ask you to help me to be serious about dealing with everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles me. Help me not to play around with these matters that hold me captive and bring destruction. Put to death any desire or behavior which resurrects my earthly nature. I want to be separated from that which is evil and wholly consecrated to You. It is in Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.


Clematis at Rehoboth Beach 5/22/16
Lavendar Clematis accenting the railing of the deck where we stayed.

Rhododendren bloom at Rehoboth Beach 5/22/16
Rhododendren bloom at Rehoboth Beach

Rehoboth Beach 5/20/16
Due to the rain we only saw the ocean twice this trip. But we feel obliged to share an ocean photo! Here’s a view at Rehoboth Beach late Friday evening from the boardwalk before the rains came. Often when we first see the ocean we recall Sister Sutherland, a dear elderly lady in our very first church near Fair Grove Missouri who loved a hymn called “Like a Mighty Sea”. Beulah and her husband Tracy were farmers who as we recall had never seen the ocean.

Rick and Jackie Steudler 5/22/16
Rick and Jackie Steudler, our gracious hosts who joined us for lunch at Cracker Barrel. We always have a great visit with them, laughing together as well as talking about the good things of the Lord and His goodness to us.


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“To Obey Is Better Than Sacrifice”  Video  Keith Green

“Create in Me a Clean Heart”  Video  Keith Green

“He Rescued Me”  Video  Red Mountain Church

“All I Have Is Christ”  Video  Sovereign Grace Music


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

Pump with flowers 5/19/16
Yesterday we passed this scene in eastern Lancaster County near Hinkletown.
“Now Is The Day Of Salvation”

Message Summary:  Today we urge each of you to examine your heart and realize today is (always) the day of salvation. Tomorrow may be too late so we urge you this moment to receive His grace.

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“Behold, now is ‘the acceptable time,’ behold, now is ‘the day of salvation'” (2 Corinthians 6:2). “Today if you hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 4:7).

iPhone siri Brooksyne has grown accustomed to using Siri on her iPhone. For those who may not know Siri is a human sounding voice that connects to the internet and responds to vocal prompts. Throughout the day I hear Brooksyne say “Hey Siri”…followed by a question and Siri does a good job of answering most of her questions. Sometimes it’s mathematical equations, other times Siri may agree to set the timer or alarm on her phone.

Once Brooksyne told Siri to set her alarm at 4 AM. Siri replied, “OK, timer is set for 4 AM but don’t wake me up at that time.” There are other times Siri comes to life when you don’t expect it and her responses can be pretty funny or even thought-provoking.

Several weeks ago we were at an employee meeting when Marlin, one of the company owners, was giving a company update. For whatever reason his Siri kept on interrupting him and it was humorous to watch his efforts to get the “chatty woman to shut up” (Brooksyne’s words). But my favorite Siri experience took place at a meeting of Christian businessmen (CBMC).

Peter Greer Our special speaker was Peter Greer, president of HOPE International, whom we also heard at a meeting this past Tuesday evening. Peter presented a message about living a life of significance by serving others.

Following the message Chris, a local CBMC leader, presented a spiritual challenge to follow Christ and led us in a prayer of confession and commitment, often called “the sinner’s prayer”. Chris was leading in the prayer inviting any who had not already done so to accept Christ. The room grew still as many of us were silently praying even as we listened respectfully. During times like this I also reaffirm the decision I made many years ago to follow Christ while also praying for anyone in attendance who needs to accept Christ.

As Chris was solemnly praying with an anointing and burden for the men in attendance, suddenly without warning, a pleasant but somewhat exasperated female voice blurted out, “I am not sure what you want!” Not only the surprise interruption but the loud female voice in an all-male meeting sure caught all the men’s attention!

iphoneOf course it was Siri who had interrupted this sacred meeting. The phone owner was very embarrassed at his phone’s misbehavior and showed me his iPhone after the meeting. Siri, has been known to misunderstand humans and speak out inappropriately! Someone more technically proficient than I might explain what it was about the salvation prayer that set “her” off but I think it was a teaching moment for any who heard it (most in the room).

For real humans Chris was quite clear in his presentation of salvation. Although Siri was not sure what he wanted (perhaps she’s not at all spiritually minded). Chris wanted each man in that room to have his heart right with God!

That’s also our goal today for each one who happens to be reading this. We chose two Scripture texts:

“Behold, now is ‘the acceptable time,’ behold, now is ‘the day of salvation’.” Today we urge each of you to examine your heart and realize today is (always) the day of salvation. Tomorrow may be too late so we urge you this moment to receive His grace.

“Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.” This is a Bible reference taken from Psalm 95:7 where the Psalmist warns against hardening our hearts as the Israelites did in the desert. The hardening of one’s heart is associated with not listening to God, not obeying Him. Just as God spoke through Moses to the people, He speaks to us through His Holy Spirit. If we repeatedly silence His promptings our hearts become callous and hardened like stone.

Rather than growing callous let us keep our hearts open and pliable while inviting the presence of the Holy Spirit to conform us into the image of Christ.

Marvelous, infinite, matchless grace,
Freely bestowed on all who believe!
You that are longing to see His face,
Will you this moment His grace receive?

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, we thank You for sending Jesus to live among us over 2000 years ago. We thank You for His teachings, His sinless life, and for His death on the cross that provides for our salvation and for His glorious resurrection. Each of us has sinned and the penalty for our sin is death. So we thank You for Jesus who took our sin penalty by dying in our place. We ask for Your forgiveness as we believe and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, because salvation comes to us through Christ Jesus our Lord. Thank You for Your wondrous and eternal gift of salvation.

Salvation prayer based on what is commonly referred to as the Romans Road (Romans 3:23, 6:23, 5:8, 10:8-10).


Stephen with Val-Co fan test 5/19/16
Among our chaplain visits yesterday:  Stephen is an agricultural engineer testing a huge fan that will be used to ventilate a chicken house. It occurred to me as I watched him he was probably enjoying the strong breeze from the van in the testing area. However when this fan is placed in actual usage it will carry the scent of thousands of poultry and will not be a pleasant place to stand in front of!

Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Except for Grace/Grace Greater Than Our Sin”  Video  The Martins

“Just As I Am”  Video  Travis Cottrell  (A wonderful adaptation with some new lyrics.)

“Jesus Saves!”  Video  Travis Cottrell  What a powerful reminder!!!

“Come To Jesus”  Video  Chris Rice

“Glorious Freedom”  Video  Gaither Vocal Band

“Grace That Is Greater Than All Our Sin”  Video  Bart Millard


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

Kraybill Church Road 5/17/16 (Photo by Ester)
Ester caught a nice view looking up Kraybill Church Road from our home.
“The White Horse Rider”

Message Summary: John saw heaven standing open and what did he see? Actually not what we might expect! If the verse was not before me I would expect it to say something to the effect, “Jesus sitting at the right hand of His Father” which is indeed the most common place we see Him after the ascension. But John says he saw a “white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True”.

Note: Podcast not available for today’s message due to busyness and weariness.

“I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True” (Revelation 19:11a).

As we drive throughout Lancaster County we see a lot of horses. In our own neighborhood here on Kraybill Church Road we see them grazing peacefully in a pasture, or working as a team in a field. One of the distinct pleasant sightings that we’ll usually stop what we’re doing and run to the porch is when a horse and buggie or open cart clip clop right past our house. Late each afternoon we have been seeing the Amish boy in our lead photo returning home after his work on a nearby farm. Our border collie Mollie doesn’t pay much attention to cars any more but when this horse comes by she darts off to the road barking at what to her must be an amazing sight! Of course we call her back trying to keep the situation peaceful not chaotic.

Horses are mentioned all through the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. The book of Revelation refers to horses 17 times so we might reasonably conclude there will be animals in heaven!

Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit.

Hoses are majestic animals but a white horse is especially so. The above photo shows our Lancaster City police horses with “Duke” in the center.

As I study heaven I note that no single extended Scripture portion gives us substantial information. Rather we have glimpses, kind of like a teaser, of what heaven is like. Today’s portion comes from the book of Revelation. It’s a tremendous comfort to believers. John had just received a remarkable revelation from an angel and had bowed down to worship the angel when he was firmly rebuked and told to “Worship God”.

Then he saw heaven standing open and what did he see? Actually not what we might expect! If the verse was not before me I would expect it to say something to the effect, “Jesus sitting at the right hand of His Father” which is indeed the most common place we see Him after the ascension. But John says he saw a “white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True”.  As you read on through the passage this is clearly a vision of Jesus.

Let’s examine and receive encouragement from the two titles given to Jesus Christ in the daily passage.

He is called “Faithful”. This translates the very common Greek word “pistos”, which objectively has the meaning of trustworthiness and reliability. This is one of the great attributes of God found throughout the Scriptures. Believers in every generation can join with Jeremiah in declaring, “Great is Thy faithfulness!”

He is called “True”. This word denotes real and genuine. It places Him in contrast to the antichrist who is also depicted on a white horse earlier in Revelation 6:2. While on earth Jesus had said in encouraging His disciples, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).

Warren Wiersbe comments on this portion of Scripture: “This description of Christ is thrilling! He is no longer on a humble donkey, but on a fiery white charger. His eyes are not filled with tears as when He beheld Jerusalem; nor is He wearing a mocking crown of thorns. Instead of being stripped by His enemies, He wears a garment dipped in blood, signifying judgment and victory. When on earth, He was abandoned by His followers; but here the armies of heaven follow Him in conquest. He comes to rule with a rod of iron (Psalm 2). He comes not to bear the wrath of God on the cross, but to tread the winepress of God’s wrath at the Battle of Armageddon. He is King of kings and Lord of lords!”

The humility of Calvary and the assertiveness of Armageddon may seem inconsistent, but wherever sin exists, both will be found. Our faithful and true Saviour will triumph in the end and His kingdom will know no end.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Dear Jesus, on that great appointed day we will behold You in all of Your glory, power and splendor!  Your appearance will far surpass the glimpse of a superstar, for You are the King of kings and Lord of lords! And because You are faithful You will not shirk Your duties but You will bring discipline and justice where injustice has so long prevailed. Capturing the vision of You as our conquering Faithful and True High Priest riding on a white horse renews our anticipation for that which is yet to come! Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus. Amen.


Horses in meadow along Colebrook Road
Horses in meadow along Kraybill Church Road and Colebrook Road

Photo of Amish plow
Amishman down our road using team horses with single plow

Kraybill Church Road 5/17/16 (Photo by Ester)
Another photo Ester took looking down Kraybill Church Road where the horse and rider are just passing our house.

Central Market alley with police horse in Lancaster PA
I received an interesting email from the commander of our Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit who had apparently come across the photo above. I took it in front of the Central Market in Lancaster, PA about 10 years ago. He wrote that the horse’s name was Duke and he told me he was black when the police force first received him. In my photo from ten years ago he looks dark gray. He has fully transitioned to white in the photo below!

Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit.
Another photo of the Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit with Duke appearing to be getting a bit frisky.


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“My Redeemer Is Faithful and True”  Video  Steven Curtis Chapman

“We Will Ride!”  Video  Not identified

“Dirt On My Hands”  Video  Booth Brothers


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

“Praise Our God!”

May 18, 2016

Church steeple in downtown Lancaster, PA
Last night following a meeting at the Lancaster Convention center we stepped out on the top floor of a parking garage and viewed this church steeple in downtown Lancaster, PA.
“Praise Our God!”

Message Summary: Today we are servants of the living God to whom we stand in awe and fear of His almighty, all-powerful righteous right hand. Let us all, both small and great, remember that we are called to reverence and worship Him today and every day.

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“Then a voice came from the throne, saying: ‘Praise our God, all you His servants, you who fear Him, both small and great!'” (Revelation 19:5).

Sight and Sound Theater, Lancaster, PA The Sight and Sound Theater east of Lancaster presents epic style Biblical dramas. The current show, which we have not yet seen is Samson. However we are quite sure it will also present the ministry of Jesus Christ and culminate with a powerful scene calling all to place their faith in Jesus Christ. At times it includes dynamic worship. Our hearts were deeply stirred when we once heard the 2000 seat auditorium filled with the melodic strains of “Crown Him with many crowns”. However we realize that any attempt we make on this side to convey the glories of heaven will pale in comparison to being there in person!

We recall one of the first presentations we attended in the theater shortly after we moved to Lancaster County in 2001. The character for John, exiled on Patmos, both introduced and closed the presentation. At the end he noted, “I’m the only one still living” (of the original disciples). That was over 1900 years ago and Christ’s church goes on, awaiting the promise of His return. Each generation has had those who have earnestly believed the Gospel and served Christ.

Today, let us take a few moments to consider a verse from Revelation. It begins with, “Then a voice came from the throne, saying.” The voice from the throne does not appear to be the voice of God Himself, since the voice says, “Praise our God.” One commentary asserts that this is probably the voice of an angel of high ranking, such as one of the living creatures around the throne mentioned elsewhere in Revelation.

Revelation 19:5 This call to “Praise our God” is to:

  • “All you His servants”, another expression of the Psalm. “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord”
  • “You who fear Him”, The concept of the fear of God is found all through the Bible with this being the final reference. “This reverence and awe is exactly what the fear of God means for Christians. This is the motivating factor for us to surrender [our entire beings] to the Creator of the Universe.” *
  • “Both small and great!'” The scope of the redeemed include those who are great in this world in regard to fame, power, wealth or influence, as well as those of us who may be entirely unknown to the world. The cross of Christ is the great equalizer among all people!

Today we are servants of the living God to whom we stand in awe and fear of His almighty, all-powerful righteous right hand. Let us all, both small and great, remember that we are called to reverence and worship Him today and every day.

Indeed, let us do so! “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe” (Hebrews 12:28).

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, Your Scripture tells us that we are to praise You from the rising of the sun until the going down of the same. So we must be purposeful in keeping You our focus throughout the activities and events of each day, whether at home, at work, the marketplace, in the car or riding public transportation, wherever our paths may lead us day by day. Since Revelation teaches us that the eternal city of heaven does not need the sun or moon to shine on it, because God’s glory illuminates it, and its lamp is the Lamb, then our praise will be unending in heaven. With the fruit of our lips today we give You praise and we honor You for who You are, for what You have done for us through Christ our Redeemer and Mediator, for how You are presently working in our lives, and for our promised eternal inheritance that is stored up for us in heaven where the best is yet to come. Amen.


Hope International banquet 5/17/16
Last night we attended a banquet at the Lancaster Marriott Convention Center and met people from all over the globe, representatives of HOPE International, which works to empower men, women, and families to break the cycles of physical and spiritual poverty through the provision of Biblically based business training, savings services, small loans, mentoring, and discipleship. By incorporating a strong witness for Jesus Christ and employing a variety of approaches to microfinance, HOPE is an innovator in the field of microenterprise development. I suppose the best way I can describe this ministry is based on the concept, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” This ministry provides the tools to fish. The speaker was Peter Greer, president and CEO of HOPE International, who has keen insight to addressing world poverty. See below for more information on HOPE International.

Convene friends at Hope International banquet 5/17/16
We attended the event as guests of our friends, Ron and Bonnie Hoover. (Ron is pictured in the middle with what appears to be a white sun shining over his head though it is the logo for HOPE Int’l.) Ron is the chair of our local Convene group. Several Convene members attended so we snapped this photo just before we headed home.


Peter GreerLast night’s meeting at HOPE International prompted some further research when we got home late. It was very inspiring to meet the people from the various countries and see the results of the mission. It sure seems to me that this organization has found a real key in expressing Biblical compassion with great and lasting results.

“What’s in Your Hands?”  Video explaining the basic mission of HOPE international

“How long would you wait for a sewing machine?” Video presentation by Peter Greer.

This film provides food for thought.  POVERTY, INC. Fighting poverty is big business. But who profits the most? Video trailer at this site. (scroll down)

This blog article on Peter Greer’s blog is very insightful Toxic Charity: Lessons from Bob Lupton

Or this one: Why We Need to Listen to the Poor: HOPE’s Untold Story



Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Crown Him Him With Many Crowns”  Video  Royal Albert Hall of London

“Crown Him”  Video  Chris Tomlin, Kari Jobe

“Worthy Is the Lamb/Crown Him With Many Crowns”  Video  Travis Cottrell

“Let My Words Be Few”  Video   Phillips, Craig & Dean

* What does it mean to have the fear of God? Here is a short article from gotquestions.org. This website has a very complete collection of short teachings based on answers to questions that are very easily searched. It has over 4,800 answers to frequently asked Bible questions published online. It was developed by a man from Kansas City Missouri, the area I grew up in.

Finally today:

Last week we shared a message prompted by a message on a license plate and then a message yesterday using Matthew 7:14 as a text. Duke, a thoughtful reader from Delaware, sent me a photo of his son’s license plate witness!

Matthew 7:14 license plate

Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

Sign in Lancaster County, PA
Church sign in Lancaster County Pennsylvania
“Are You Sure You’re On The Right Road?”

Message Summary: On the spiritual highway road signs and guideposts are surely the directions in the Holy Scriptures, God’s owner’s manual for each of us. The Scriptures are an absolutely reliable map to direct our paths in the course of living here on earth while also directing our hearts toward the life hereafter.

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“Set up road signs; put up guideposts. Take note of the highway, the road that you take” (Jeremiah 31:21). “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13,14).

Museum of the Bible Yesterday we went to a very informative breakfast meeting presenting “The Museum Of The Bible”, a huge world class facility being built in Washington, DC which is scheduled to be completed and open to the public in the fall of 2017. It is the vision of the Green family (of the Hobby Lobby fame) from Oklahoma City. We will share links to several of the videos below to give our readers some idea of the scope of the project. They are actually giving construction site tours while it is being constructed (actually a massive renovation to an older building near the Capitol). See here on Google map.

It is the belief of many that we desperately need to get back to the Bible. In the presentation they pointed out much of all we see around us can be attributed to the influence of the Bible: arts, music, science, medicine, compassion, justice and on and on. All of this is true and wonderful but the main lesson we learn from the Bible is how to restore our sin-broken relationship with God.

We periodically pass a country church here in Lancaster County between Manheim and Lititz that sits on an interesting lot. As you approach the church from the west, you come to a fork in the road. I assume the original road went straight, directly past the front of the church. But at this point the “new” highway veers right.  Someone in the church considered a thoughtful witness sign to place at this very small point that is both practical and spiritual. It merely asks, “Are You Sure You’re On the Right Road?” That’s a question everyone of us need to ask ourselves!

Matthew 7:13,14In smaller letters under the question there’s a Scripture reference. I wonder how many have looked this up through the years! It is the words of the Lord Jesus Christ where He solemnly states, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13,14).

However today we want to especially consider a phrase from the prophet Jeremiah. It was originally pronounced to the Southern Kingdom some 2,600 years ago and remains a relevant reminder to all generations, “Take note of the highway, the road that you take” (Jeremiah 31:32).

It is a fact that we are all presently on the road to our eternal destination. God has placed us in the driver’s seat to steer our lives in the direction of our choosing. Since there are many roads we may travel He equips us with the Bible roadmap that tells us what to expect when we choose a particular route. One road is broad, well-travelled and seems very enticing. It’s the road the majority take. But since the futile end of this road extends beyond our initial view, Solomon warns travelers, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death” (Proverbs 14:12). Our goal should be to stay on the narrow road that leads to life.

Jesus gives directions to those desiring to travel this narrow road when He says, “I am the Way, the Truth, the Life. No one comes to the Father but through me” (John 14:6).  It will not be through our good works or other man-centered efforts, but those traveling on the Highway to Heaven will get there only through the saving blood of Jesus Christ!

QuoteJeremiah instructs, “Set up road signs; put up guideposts.” When we travel on an unfamiliar highway we appreciate periodic signs informing us that we’re on the right road. Even though we have GPS I don’t usually use it but prefer the old-fashioned way! Even on familiar routes we still value guideposts that assure us we’re going the right way.  In my preaching I often comment on the phrase in Hebrews 12:1 where the writer of Hebrews urges us to confidently persevere in “the race marked out for us.”  We don’t have to flip a coin or make a blind guess as to which direction we take but in living by the Bible we can move forward in confidence.

On the spiritual highway road signs and guideposts are surely the directions in the Holy Scriptures, God’s owner’s manual for each of us. The Scriptures are an absolutely reliable map to direct our paths in the course of living here on earth while also directing our hearts toward the life hereafter.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, this journey of faith began at mile marker zero which was, for those who believe, the moment we realized the tremendous sacrifice of Jesus’ death on the cross.  After we repented of our sins and placed our faith in Christ we began this faith journey and the milestones along the way have assured us that the route we’re on leads to eternal life. We reject the philosophies that originate from this world and follow Your roadmap that keeps us on the highway of holiness as we are ever watchful for the prowling enemy attempting to steer us off course. Though sorrow and mourning have accompanied us on this journey, we will enter Zion rejoicing and singing as You crown us with everlasting joy! And the marvelous blessing is that the end of this earthly journey is really only the beginning of our eternal journey! Thank You, Jesus, for making it possible!  Amen.


Museum of the Bible presentation (Lancaster Bible College, Lancaster 5/16/16)
Sunday evening we attended a community presentation in the Good Shepherd Chapel at Lancaster Bible College. While we enjoyed delicious h’orderves and fellowship professional musicians filled the air with outstanding musical selections!

Museum of the Bible presentation (Eden Resort, Lancaster 5/16/16)
Monday morning we attended a smaller breakfast meeting planned for spiritual leaders at the Eden Resort where we heard from Chairman Steve Green (center) and several other leaders including Cary Summers (R), president of Museum of the Bible.

Quote at LBC
This large stencil is on the wall over the doors for the students to see as they depart the Good Shepherd chapel at Lancaster Bible College. We hope the students learn the powerful story behind the quote that we shared in a daily encouragement message over five years ago.


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Ancient Words”  Video  Robin Mark

“Jesus, Only Jesus”  Video  Charles Billingsley, Guy Penrod, Michael O’Brien and Travis Cottrell

Museum of the Bible website

“Museum of the Bible” Video overview

“Museum of the Bible”  Video fly-through  Amazing!!!

“A World Worth Exploring”  Video  A very thought-provoking presentation about the impact of the Bible. When you watch it you need to realize it’s expressing how the Bible is used and viewed by the world as well as for the right reasons.

Washington DC Museum Construction Tour – Spring 2015  Video

Finally today:

“Show a Little Bit of Love and Kindness”  Video  Collingsworth Family A song that just brings us both a big smile!


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

Baby robin fledgling 5/16/16
This morning our baby robins fledged! They first hatched May 2.
“To The Remotest Part Of The Earth”

Message Summary: The book of Acts is a record of the obedience of the early church to this command and surely that command remains through the church age. Today the Holy Spirit continues to empower believers all over the world to be witnesses for Christ as they let their lights shine in vibrant testimony for Him.

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Grover DeVault is a local friend who served as a chaplain in the US Army. During the course of his career he has had some interesting experiences. He, with the help of an interpreter, held an evangelistic crusade in Vietnam during the conflict and many came to Christ. He found out many years later that one man attended the services strapped with bombs intending to blow himself up and of course killing many. However the man listened to Grover’s proclamation of the Gospel, was convicted of his sins, and was gloriously saved!

Grover and Nancy Devault 5/15/16Yesterday we attended a Vietnamese church with Grover and his wife, Nancy, as well as our longtime friends, Jim and Dorothy Schmidt. It was the earlier English service geared for the Vietnamese youth and young adults. (A later service is attended by the older adult Vietnamese with the music and sermon spoken in their native language.) I had the opportunity to introduce Grover and pointed out that some of in attendance may have descended from those saved in that crusade back in the late sixties.

Apart from our own family influence, and perhaps a longtime pastor or famous evangelist, most of us have little knowledge of our spiritual ancestors. But we are all ultimately a result of the early disciples’ obedience to the Great Commission and those who have remained obedient to that commission since that time. And now we are all called to be a part in the transmission.

Acts 1:8Today’s text is the last instruction from Jesus to His disciples before His Ascension, a teaching concerning the power of the Holy Spirit for witness. Yesterday was Pentecost Sunday, what many consider the birthday of the church when God poured out His Spirit on those praying in the upper room, as recorded in Acrs 2. Beginning that day we see the church’s obedience to His command to be Christ’s witnesses and in the remainder of Acts we see concentric circles geographically as the message spread from Jerusalem to Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth. In Acts the remotest parts specifically referenced are Rome.

Grover Devault arctic preaching mid-1960'sBut Grover DeVault, the chaplain, referred to in the earlier part of today’s message, is one of only two ministers who has ever preached on the North Pole! Back in the mid-sixties he was serving on a remote base in Greenland above the Arctic Circle when he flew with a group of military personnel to the North Pole. He and a Roman Catholic priest each held a service at the Pole fulfilling Christ’s commission to preach to the remotest parts of the earth. (I do not know whether there has ever been a service on the South Pole!)

Pastor John Piper writes, “Therefore the end and goal of world missions is that the nations might glorify God for His mercy. The aim of missions is worship. Missions exists because worship doesn’t. The gap between God’s goal to glorify Himself in all that He does and the world of unbelief that denies Him that glory is being closed by God through the means of world missions.”

The book of Acts is a record of the obedience of the early church to this command and surely that command remains through the church age. Today the Holy Spirit continues to empower believers all over the world to be witnesses for Christ as they let their lights shine in vibrant testimony for Him.

Pastor Steven ColesPastor Steven Coles observes, “The disciples were to be Christ’s witnesses. Is this a command or a prophecy? Both! There is a sense in which every Christian is a witness. The question is, “Are we effective witnesses or are we a hindrance to the cause of Christ?” The word “witness” is a major theme in Acts, occurring 39 times. Since it is the Lord’s command and since we cannot escape being witnesses of some sort, it behooves us to seek, by our godly lifestyle and clear verbal witness, to bring glory to Jesus Christ.”

Today how are you being a witness for Christ?

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, we are a chosen generation, a royal people who have been called out of darkness into Your marvelous light. Through the power of Your Holy Spirit we go forth and shine Your light through our works, our attitudes, our holy lives, and by our verbal witness. May we bring You glory as others see Your light shining through us. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.


Jim and Dorothy Schmidt 5/15/16
Jim and Dorothy Schmidt who, just two weeks ago, changed their residency from Ocean City, NJ to Lancaster County. They’ve been our friends for over 15 years and we are delighted to have them living only 20 minutes from our home, though we will miss their beautiful home and warm hospitality offered each time we visit Ocean City.

Tim and Melonie Murray 5/14/16
Tim & Melonie Murray stopped by on Saturday morning. Tim is a friend from JK Mechanical. When we learned it was their 13th wedding anniversary Brooksyne shared a jar of spicy peach jam and I threw in a “new car smell” air freshener. Since we now serve as chaplains at Kleen-Rite, a supply company for car washes, I ordered an assortment of car fresheners we now enjoy sharing with friends. With a little imagination, perhaps the “new car smell” can double as a “new marriage refresher” for the couple now beginning their 14th year of marriage. Their love and devotion is very evident!


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Send Me Out”  Video   Gilbert Hovsepian

Finally today:  Tomorrow we will share about an outstanding presentation we attended last night and again this morning concerning the Museum of the Bible being built in Washington DC. It is a vision of the Green family who stood up like a Daniel to an evil edict of our current government. We are seeing an increase in evil edicts from our government!


Contact Us
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne
To receive the “Daily Encouragement” each Monday-Friday through email see this page to subscribe to our email list. You can also subscribe to the WordPress rss feed or through a WordPress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.)
Support Our MinistryWe want to thank all who financially support our ministry. We realize there are many fine ministries and causes requesting support but if the Lord would lead you we surely need and appreciate the financial support from our readers and listeners. Our ministry labor is comprised of half our time to Daily Encouragement and the other half to our chaplaincy ministry to companies for which we receive a fee (of course this percentage of time varies week by week). 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 phase would provide half of our ministry expenses and income. If you would like to make a donation to our ministry see here for more information. Donations through my chaplaincy endorsing ministry are tax deductible and will be receipted directly by them.  Thank you!

Make A Donation using PayPalPlease Note: Our chaplain agency is unable to provide a receipt if the donation is made through PayPal. However we provide this option due to the convenience, international supporters, and for those who may not be concerned regarding receiving an official receipt. Click here to donate using PayPal.

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