“I Am Persuaded”

October 17, 2017

Boxcar rocks, Lebanon County 10/15/17
Sunday afternoon, following our Stony Valley rail grade tour, we hiked back to Boxcar rocks, which is off Goldmine Road in northern Lebanon County. This particular formation is known as Whale Rock.

“I Am Persuaded”

Message summary: Join us as together we entrust to Jesus those burdens upon our hearts this day, for we are persuaded that life is worth the living just because He lives!

ListenListen to our message on your audio player.

“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38,39). “For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know Whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day” (2 Timothy 1:12).

I believe Your love is faithful
When all my hopes have crumbled
It is standing strong and able
When everything else fails
I believe Your love will cover me
Through every storm

Athanasius, an early bishop of Alexandria, stoutly opposed the teachings of Arius, who declared that Christ was not the eternal Son of God, but merely a subordinate being. Hounded through five exiles, he was finally summoned before emperor Theodosius, who demanded he cease his opposition to Arius. The emperor reproved him and asked, “Do you not realize that all the world is against you?” Athanasius quickly answered, “Then I am against all the world.”

Today our world desperately needs followers of Christ like Athanasius who, with deep conviction, will stand boldly for the Lord and His Word regardless of what is popular or what the world may say is right. You’ve likely seen the slogan, “What’s popular isn’t always right, and what’s right isn’t always popular.”

The word “persuaded” in both daily texts is a great source of strength and assurance for the believer. The Greek word “Peitho” is a strong verb which conveys the ideas of confidence, reliance, and hope. Living in a state of being persuaded is an essential part of living the God-ordained life of spiritual abundance. If we are really persuaded (“convinced” in many versions) of God’s love and care we are blessed indeed! This persuasion is an internal, personal appropriation of a constant, unchanging spiritual reality. You see, the reality is that God loves and cares for His own, whether we are persuaded of it or not. The Amplified Version conveys a strong sense of the meaning when it translates: “I am persuaded beyond doubt.”

In this section of the epistle to the Romans the apostle Paul is expressing his supreme confidence in God’s master plan for his own life and for His Kingdom. He asks a very important question, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?” Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?” (Romans 8:35). He responds to his own question with this glorious verse of assurance: “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us” (Romans 8:37).

I believe beyond a shadow
You will never forsake me
And Your love endures forever
When all my strength is gone
I believe Your love will carry me
And hold me close

We are dealing with issues we scarcely would have thought several years ago. These issues have tremendous impact on the personal, nationwide, and worldwide levels. Error is not creeping but charging into the church that our forefathers could not have imagined. New sources of fear abound. Uncertainty permeates. We shake our heads in wonder as to what in the world is this world coming to? Today we sure need the same sense of being persuaded that Paul experienced, don’t we?

Bill and Gloria Gaither, authors of over 700 inspirational songs, experienced fear and uncertainty surrounding the birth of their son Benjamin in 1971, which eventually became the seedling for their much loved classic song, “Because He Lives.” World conditions and personal trials can rob us of peace but let us instead focus our hearts and minds on the Peacespeaker.  He speaks not only to the winds and waves of the sea but He also calms our turbulent hearts today with that same calming message, “Peace, be still!”  Join us as together we entrust to Jesus those burdens upon our hearts this day, for we are persuaded that life is worth the living just because He lives!

I am persuaded
Nothing in life
Nothing in death
No mountain high
No ocean depth
No power below
On earth or above
Can separate from Your love.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, doubt and uncertainty imposes fear while faith and assurance develops a calm, trusting spirit. I do not look to the world for strength or encouragement but I look to Your Word where I am persuaded that You will protect and guard that which You have entrusted to me until the day when Christ will return and take us to live in heaven. By the empowerment of Your Spirit help me to boldly stand when the world and even those close to me assault my faith. It is in Your strength and through Your power that I will remain faithful though tested by fire. May the purifying of my faith, worth more than gold, bring praise, glory and honor to Jesus my Lord and Savior. Amen.


Some more scenes from our Sunday drive.

Boxcar rocks, Lebanon County 10/15/17
Boxcar rocks are an interesting rock formation in the form of a long train on a very remote mountain ridge in northern Lebanon County (see here on Google maps)

Whale Rock, Boxcar rocks, Lebanon County 10/15/17
We didn’t care to climb on top of the rocks like these boys so we took their picture instead!

Boxcar rocks walking path, Lebanon County 10/15/17
The path to the Boxcar Rocks turned out to be quite a bit longer than we would have preferred, but it was a beautiful wooded path and we made it! Brooksyne is taking the lead and Ester is tucked in behind (to Brooksyne’s right).

Goldmine Road, Lebanon County 10/15/17
Goldmine Road in northern Lebanon County has a mountainous feel similar to where we lived in northern Pennsylvania during our nearly 16 years of ministry in Elk County.


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“I Am Persuaded”  Video  Travis Cottrell  (This is the song used in today’s message)

“I Am Persuaded (We Are More Than Conquerors)”  Video  Maranatha! Singers

“His Grace Is Sufficient”  Video  Booth Brothers

“If Not for Christ”  Video  FFH

A video presentation of Boxcar Rocks with some drone footage.

A video drone tour through the Stony Valley with helpful captions

Boxcar Rocks brings to mind Boxcar Willie!

“Walbash Cannonball”  Video  Boxcar Willie  Great train photos!

“Life’s Railway To Heaven”  Video  Boxcar Willie

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