Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Daily Encouragement (05/08/13) "Ministry Marriage"

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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Our wedding photo
May 8, 1976

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"Ministry Marriage"

"The LORD God said, 'It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him'" (Genesis 2:18). "He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD" (Proverbs 18:22). "Marriage should be honored by all" (Hebrews 13:4a).

Out in the highways and byways of life,
many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife
making the sorrowing glad.

Sunday I visited with Clarence and Alverta, who will soon celebrate their 71st wedding anniversary, A colorful couple and especially vibrant is Alverta, they end up refreshing me as I seek to bless them with chaplain care. See below for a photo of Clarence reading the Bible.

Today is a special day in our home. Thirty-seven years ago Brooksyne and I were married in her home church in Sapulpa, Oklahoma and we began our journey together as the Weber family. For this we are very thankful. We had both committed our lives to Jesus Christ years earlier and have served the Lord together in our 37 years of marriage.

We've had our victories. We've had our disappointments. And we still have them. We were unable to have our own biological children and we've had several of the inevitable heartaches associated with ministry. Raising our daughter, Ester, though a tremendous blessing to us, has presented numerous challenges as well.

Like any issue of life we have a choice whether to focus on the positive or negative. We choose to focus on the positive and God's many, many blessings. God has blessed us with a very fulfilling marriage along with a fruitful ministry. Today we have chaplain ministry and expect to encounter those navigating their way through this broken world.
The old song "Make Me A Blessing" is a lifelong outlook.

Tell the sweet story of Christ and His love;
Tell of His pow'r to forgive;
Others will trust Him if only you prove
true ev'ry moment you live.

Aquila and Priscilla
We've always admired the joint ministry of Aquila and Priscilla and have preached messages together based upon their lives. They are referenced seven times in Scripture in five separate contexts of ministry. Their names are always mentioned together and every reference to them is positive. 

Most of you can probably think of ministry couples who have impacted your life for Christ. Brooksyne and I thank God for the ministry couples who have enriched both our marriage and ministry. Some people come to mind as a couple rather than individual, and when we speak of them we tend to refer to them both rather than as individuals.

Take a moment to thank God and pray for these couples today. As you have opportunity let them know of the blessing they have been to you! Sometimes the very people who inspire us along the way lose their spiritual focus or become wearied by life's struggles and need a fresh touch from the Lord. Is Christ asking you to be His messenger of encouragement today?

Make me a blessing, Make me a blessing,
Out of my life may Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O Savior, I pray,
Make me a blessing to someone today.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen and Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, what a joy it is to walk along life's pathway with a loving companion who is present during times of celebration as well as times of disappointment. It seems that You make him strong when I am weak, and when he is weak You make me strong. You blend our strengths and weaknesses to make us an effective spiritual team and a genuinely committed family. Thank You for your countless blessings that far outnumber the difficulties and heartaches of our lives.

Father, I pray that you would encourage our readers who are presently going through marital strife. Remind them that they will experience future blessing as they endure and work through their present difficulties. When we cut short the permanency intended in a marital relationship we miss so much of the blessing that comes years later after many of the earlier struggles are but a memory. Thank you for the spouse of my youth who remains my constant companion as we grow old together. What a marvelous blessing! We thank You as we come to You in prayer through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

Brooksyne's note (I shared this note about eight years ago): As Stephen and I shared together in our encouragement today I am very sensitive to the people we visit and the emails we receive from regular readers regarding marital difficulties. Some of you write about the deep wounds you feel as a result of your spouse's unfaithfulness in marriage. I want to share with you personally an example from my own childhood that perhaps will serve as a reminder of the importance of long-term marriage commitment.

My parents struggled a lot in their marriage – they were very different in personality and both had quick tempers which led to lots of serious arguments over the years.  It was very unsettling for me and my four siblings.  We rode out the fiery storms and their very short-term separations over the years.  While I was a junior in Bible College (200 miles from home) they showed up one day unannounced to let me know they were planning to divorce.  It was certainly a horrible and upsetting announcement since my wedding with Stephen was scheduled only a month later. 

Instead of divorcing, somehow they chose to stay together but sadly they continued to deal with marital strife over the next 20 years.  Of course none of us could know what the future would hold for both of them as Mom first dealt with cancer and then Dad, a year later, would find that he, too, had cancer. Only a couple years previous to their dealing with cancer they both recommitted their lives to Christ.   Though it was terribly difficult to see them suffer with such poor health it was a blessing to see them tenderly care for one another during life's greatest storm they would weather together.  Dad went first in 2000 and Mom's death followed the next year.  They came to realize just how much they really did love each other.

When the five siblings gathered around both parents toward the end of their lives on earth I remember thinking about "What if?"  What if they'd chosen to go their separate ways and hadn't had each other during their most difficult days? What if they'd chosen other mates?  I considered how complicated the setting would be for "others" who were not our flesh and blood to be making crucial decisions at such an intimate family time.  I know many of you reading this are a blended family so you know personally of what I write. 

Many things in life happen that are completely out of our hands, but when it is up to us, let us consider the long-term effects of our decisions and realize "God's way is the best way!"  He wants to give us a hope and a future that will bring untold blessing!  For some of you God is turning the wreckage of your home into a place where trust is being reinstated.  Wherever you are in your journey keep your foundation firmly established in God's Word and His sufficient grace will be constant supply.

Stephen's note: Monday we purchased a new computer for our ministry; a Windows 8 edition so we are having some adjusting to the new system, including issues with the regular high quality microphone we use for the podcast. We are temporarily using a lower quality mic till we can get another one.

Today we expect an overnight visit from our longtime friends from North Carolina; Mike and Kathy Matangelo along with their daughter Tina. Tomorrow following our chaplaincy visitation we will head to the Delaware shore for several days.

Due to our busyness we do not expect to get a message off tomorrow (Thursday) but will attempt to prepare one Friday.

Clarence reading Bible 1/20/13
Clarence is reading his Bible on a special magnifier. Thank God for those who don't give up when facing major obstacles such as their failing eyesight. What diligence, patience, and dedication Clarence conveys as he reads the Word.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

Several of these touching songs came to my attention and they may just be a blessing to you. Several are ballad style and have a tender message.

"Hug Him Once For Me"  Video  A heart-touching song written by a mother who lost an infant son.

"Somebody Died For Me"  Video 
Triumphant Quartet  What a powerful song!!!

"The Broken Ones"  Video   Lauren Talley

"Broken World"  Video  The Talleys
Send a message to Stephen & Brooksyne.
Stephen, Brooksyne and Ester Weber 04/21/13Stephen and Brooksyne Weber
(Click on photo to enlarge)
"We want to encourage you daily in your walk with Christ!"

Personal Ministry Update  (Revised 12/31/12)

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Our other blogs:
"A Daily Prayer" - A blog simply posting the daily prayer. We keep this up each day since it's merely the prayer from the Daily Encouragement Net message!
"A Little Foolishness" - Humor/satire blog (a great outlet for non-serious writing but at times with a subtle message!) (Note: This material is satire!)
"Clear Minded" - Longer, periodic articles on specific issues impacting the faithful believer and church. (Actually this is my intent but I haven't done much with it!)
"Hymns of Hope" - Brooksyne along with two friends made a CD using classic hymns. Brooksyne tells the background story of the 11 hymns. All of these songs are also available for download on the site.

Personal Mission Statement
"I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

Four Spiritual Laws

How to become a child of God

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.
Other versions are also occasionally used.

© Copyright 2013 Stephen C. Weber - All Rights Reserved

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Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
495 Kraybill Church Road - Mount Joy, PA 17552
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