The View From My Window Pastor's Weekly Blog

December 16, 2018

Driving in to the office the other day I stopped for a school bus coming the opposite direction with its flashers blinking. We sat there for quite a while looking from one side of the road to the other at no one coming from anywhere. It actually inspired a little sympathy in me for bus drivers as I wondered how long & how often they were required to wait for someone who wasn’t coming.

No doubt you’ve been waiting for people you love to come to Jesus. You have prayed for them, dropped witness seeds, invited them to church but so far they’ve kept their distance.

Just like that bus driver will stop at that same stop tomorrow knowing it’s possible that student is ready to go to school, we need to faithfully make our rounds. It’s never wrong to keep working for someone’s salvation but doubly true now. I believe God has given us a window of opportunity, an enhanced, energized boost of His anointing to see people get right with God who have not been interested previously. The time is short, now is the time to make one more round; do your best to get as many to safety as you can.

Pastor Joel Everhart

December 9, 2018

We had flown into Washington D.C. from visiting our kids in Utah. It was a Saturday afternoon so traffic would be lighter than normal & we’d be on our way out of town before dark. Unfortunately, there was a 5k running past our parking garage so the shuttle could only get us within two blocks of the place. After lugging our luggage to the car we learned that all the surrounding streets were closed until after the race. Did you know it takes some people over an hour to travel 3.1 miles?

It was very dark by the time we were released. I got befuddled with the directions we had as we got on some beltway that changed from East to West even though I hadn’t exited. We looped around the entire city; we were lost, seemingly to spend the rest of our lives circling the nation’s capital. My head started to hurt, my heart was pounding, I was getting angrier by the minute: angry at road signs, angry at whoever it was that decided to run a 5k in the middle of a city, angry at road design engineers…

That’s a little bit what it’s like whenever you get disconnected from the Lord: you get lost. Your head starts to spin, anger becomes an issue; nothing works the way you planned. Come home. Stop running around in circles & come home – the Father’s arms are open wide.

Pastor Joel Everhart

December 2, 2018

It was my intention to preach this sermon last Sunday morning, talking about trouble. I wasn’t able to preach it because my family experienced some trouble. Plan B was to slip this message in on a Sunday morning in the future in order to catch up with my preaching plan for December but as I read over it I thought, “How appropriate.” Trouble doesn’t take the holidays off! In fact, its beginning to feel as though distress has a special holiday edition as if it’s getting paid overtime to show up at this time of the year.

Five years ago my nephew passed away at the age of 31 just before Thanksgiving. Two years ago we lost my brother the Monday after Thanksgiving & now this year my mother went home to glory on Thanksgiving Day. No, trouble doesn’t take the holidays off, at least not in my family. I’m guessing, not in yours either. Let’s look in the Word today for a little help.

Pastor Joel Everhart

November 25, 2018

Recently, my daughter’s family ran to the Emergency Room in the wee hours of the morning & spent a good part of the day there because my son-in-law Chris was experiencing severe pain in his chest & stomach. Rousing three boys ages 3-7 out of bed, packing enough supplies to keep them satisfied, pleading with ER staff to do something, finally going through tests … well you get the picture. They found out his gallbladder needs to be removed, but were able to give him some medicine that calmed things down until surgery can be scheduled. Did I mention my daughter is pregnant & that their vehicle has been acting up?

TROUBLE. Everyone has some. Why am I talking about trouble on the Sunday after Thanksgiving? If it weren’t for trouble our testimonies would be pretty lame. If there were no Midianites we would have never heard of Gideon. If there hadn’t been a Goliath … the story just wouldn’t be the same if David had faced a midget.

Trouble is the prelude to every miracle. The greater the trouble, the greater the miracle, the greater the praise! God is our ever present help in times of trouble.

Pastor Joel Everhart

November 18, 2018

I live a half-mile from the YMCA in Hanover & I’ve gotten into a bit of a habit to go there when they open on Saturdays at 6am just after I’m done with my morning run. They have a hot tub. I’m the only one in it at that time of the morning. It feels absolutely heavenly! Every time I wade into its waters & slowly sink onto the seat in front of its most powerful jet I break out into praise. I have found myself a hiding place. I have found myself a secret space.

As my tired bones soak in the hot water & the jet massages my muscles my spirit goes to heavenly places. Each of us needs to develop a hot tub prayer life where we can go whenever life becomes overwhelming. A place where the stresses, fears, & worries of this life get massaged away while the presence & peace of God soaks into our bones. In today’s message we’ll follow David as he finds his hiding place & gets revived.

Pastor Joel Everhart

November 11, 2018

Did you catch that news report of the fellow from Texas who shot at a teenager & is now up on attempted murder charges? A 14-year-old black student missed his bus & started walking to school but got lost. He decided to stop by a house & ask for directions. After ringing the doorbell, a guy bursts out the front door with a shotgun. The boy takes off across the lawn running for his life as the man raises his gun, takes aim & shoots. Fortunately, the boy was not hit. The man argued that he thought he was being robbed & that the gun accidentally went off because he tripped but the video showed a clear, deliberate action taken against a fleeing student. Here’s the kicker: it was all recorded on the man’s own doorbell camera.

We now live in a world where you must assume your every move is being recorded, if not watched. Actually, that’s always been the case. God sees, God knows.

Last week, we considered Psalm 1 & found it to be a blueprint for living a good life: not only being good but enjoying the best life has to offer. Today we move on to Psalm 2 where we catch a glimpse of God watching the Taliban, ISIS, Russia, North Korea & yes, the United States. How does He respond to threats against His laws, authority & people?

Pastor Joel Everhart

November 4, 2018

This message could just as easily be titled “Road Map to the Good Life” or perhaps for today’s generation, “GPS to Success.” I’d be a little hesitant to use that second title because road maps have tended to be more reliable than GPSs. Once when coming home from Virginia, our GPS took us right through the heart of Baltimore just as an Oriole’s game was about to begin: gee, the traffic was terrific! We drove right past Camden Yards, or should I say we crawled right past Camden Yards.

People are always looking for a faster route, a “shortcut.” Sometimes it works out but at other times it can cost you big time. I remember my wife telling me once, “We need to get there, and we have just enough time, so no shortcuts!” Obviously, what she was saying is that it was safer to stick to the given directions. They would get us there safely & on time.

That’s the message of Psalm 1: this is the safe, well-marked, proven route, take it & have a wonderful life. It also contains a few warnings about detours.

Pastor Joel Everhart

October 28, 2018

My parents are both old & old school & for a while they had several outside cats. They were basically strays that mom started feeding but they served a good purpose. Living in the woods next to a stream, rodents, snakes & other varmints needed to be kept in check.

For a while a large raccoon was eating the food mom left out for the cats. Then it moved into dad’s carport. Finally, it started hissing at & scaring the life out of anyone who came near the house. Mom called the game warden but he wasn’t going to make a special trip out to try & find a raccoon that may or may not be in the yard when he got there. Then one day the raccoon died suddenly of a single gunshot wound to the chest while some younger members of the family were visiting. My parents aren’t the only ones in the family that are “old school.”

There are times when a creature decides to move in & take over. They steal, kill & destroy. They are not interested in compromise or friendship. It’s time to go to war. Ignoring the enemy of our soul doesn’t deter him from doing us harm. Trying to compromise with him doesn’t work. Sometimes, the only thing left to do is to fast & pray in order to send him packing.

Pastor Joel Everhart

October 21, 2018

The light on my van’s dashboard lit up indicating that my tire pressure was low. I made sure to get gas the next time I needed it at Giant in Hanover because they’ve always provided air for free. I parked my van, unscrewed all my valve caps then reached for the air hose only to notice that it now costs $1.50 to start the compressor. I drove around another couple of days with my indicator light lit up before going to my next favorite free air station, the Sheetz on the corner of Eisenhower & Carlisle in Hanover. I now have a new favorite place to get gas.

Sometimes when things change we have no other option but to go with the change. At other times it would be wrong for us not to respond in some way even if its as little as voicing our objections. America has changed dramatically during my lifetime. Many of the changes have not been good: moral decline, increased violence… I believe we have a window of opportunity, a chance at revival that can save us from completely destroying ourselves. BUT we have to do more than “tsk-tsk.” We must fast & pray. If America collapses it will be because God’s people did not humble themselves, repent, pray & seek God’s face. Seek God this week as though the lives of your children & grandchildren depend on it. It does.

Pastor Joel Everhart

October 14, 2018

A neighbor of mine has a granddaughter that is taking college courses even while she’s in high school & never settles for anything less than an “A.” Her goal is to become a brain surgeon & all indications are she’s got all the makings to become a great doctor. Her grandmother, however, was a little worried about how much time she spends studying. She asked her granddaughter, “Don’t you ever go out on dates?” Her response was, “Grandma, let me tell you about boys. In middle school, if they like you, they pull or put gum in your hair, poke or trip you. And that’s if they like you! In high school they’re not much better. I’ll start dating when I find a boy that doesn’t act like a child.” I say, “Good luck with that.”

I bring up the question of maturity because if we intend to attract God’s attention it won’t be with great exploits or boastful proclamations. God is attracted to a humble heart. One of the reasons we fast is so that we can humble ourselves before God & attract His attention.

Pastor Joel Everhart

October 7, 2018

My dog just kept putting on weight so I asked some advice from a clerk at Pet Smart. He asked me how much food I gave my dog. I said, “I keep filling her bowl until she stops barking at me.” Problem identified.
Maybe you have the same problem with your stomach that I have with my dog: you feed it until it quits barking. Or maybe it’s your brain that has grown accustomed to overstimulation. Or maybe it’s your wallet that suffers from scratching your spending itch too often. In any of these cases, it’s the owner’s duty to master up: take responsibility, endure whatever consequences come due to past neglect & start eating, exercising, resting, & spending sensibly.

All of this is one reason to fast: to get your flesh under control. We’ll talk about another reason in this morning’s message: we fast in order to tap into the power of God (which is necessary if you are planning on taking on your belly, social media or wallet).

Pastor Joel Everhart

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