The last few days we have been touring around PA Dutch country in Lancaster County. Yesterday we took a tour at a place that is set up kind of like a working Amish farm, with a guide that explained much of the traditions of the Plain People. I have read a bit about them and find them very interesting so I knew a lot of what the guide shared: they don’t use electricity or any other service which comes in through “lines”, they do use battery and gasoline powered equipment, and they are ingenious at converting things like refrigerators and washers to use LP gas or run off compressed air.

The thing that really stood out to me though was when the guide said that the Amish “are Christians”. It hadn’t occurred to me that people might not understand that they are very conservative group of Christians. And really, in more ways than we often think, they are pretty similar to more “mainstream” denominations.

There is a tremendous amount of liberty that we have in Christ. We should all be thankful for this and keep it in the forefront of our minds.

Eyewitness Account

Eyewitness Account

We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty (2 Peter 1:16).

Scripture: 2 Peter 1:16-21

I witnessed it, watching in horror as a pick-up truck veered out of its lane and smashed into a friend’s car. Thankfully, no one was seriously injured. The truck’s driver tried to deny his responsibility, but the police were quite interested in my firsthand, eyewitness account.

The apostles were eyewitnesses too. How wonderful to walk with Jesus, to dine with Him, to hear Him teach. They witnessed His miracles; they heard the voice of the Father affirming Jesus as His Son. They even saw Jesus raised to life, and then ascending to Heaven.

We encounter difficult days when our faith may be tested. We may begin to doubt in the darkness what seemed so sure in the light. It’s then that we can return to the beginning point of faith-to the clear, firsthand accounts of those who were with Jesus. After all, you just can’t argue with an eyewitness. Let Christ shine in your heart, no matter how dark your days may seem.

Father, thank You for the faithful witness of those who were with Jesus. May their testimony be a constant source of strength and faith for me. In the name of Jesus, my Savior, I pray. Amen.

(Dan Nicksich is the senior minister of First Christian Church in Somerset, Pennsylvania.)

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A Blessed Weekend

We spent this weekend in PA, for a family reunion. Up until Saturday morning when we left out, the forecast was 80% chance of rain with strong, some severe, thunderstorms, all Saturday into Sunday morning.

The drive up was a little wet at times, not anything terrible though. Once we got about 10 miles into PA the rain left and the sun began to shine.

Through out the rest of the weekend, to all of our suprise, not another drop of rain was to fall. Saturday and Sunday were both beautiful days, lots of sunshine and a nice breeze with temps mildly in the 70s. The Lord graciously blessed us with perfect weather. In fact, I must have heard at least half a dozen different people say how perfect the weather turned out to be, to each who I replied, “Yes, God has richly blessed us this weekend with fine weather and family.”

The Sunday morning portion of the reunion started off with an outdoor church service under a picnic pavilion. It was an encouraging message we were blessed with on lessons we can learn from Matthew’s recounting of Peter walking on water, more on that later in the week.

I can’t express to you or than God enough for the wonderful time He gave us.