The View From My Window Pastor's Weekly Blog



September 29, 2019

Sitting in the Cernugals’ living room shortly after Marty was discharged from rehab, it dawned on me that the last time I’d been in their home was shortly after Carole had come home from the hospital. I’ve watched as a number of our older couples have taken turns helping each other recover from an injury or illness. I don’t think there’s a greater expression of love than that.

Sometimes a rather contentious relationship can be helped through just such an experience. Realizing our dependency on one another, doing for our partner what they cannot do for themselves & working together to get things done, has a way of drawing us in, bringing us closer.

It’s time to stop thinking that the Lord is the only one expected to do anything in this relationship we have with Him. Along with all the benefits of being part of His family come some very serious responsibilities. When you finally “take up your cross” & follow Him, you’ll find a fellowship with the Lord you never knew existed.

Pastor Joel Everhart

September 22, 2019

We moved from Lake Meade to Hanover just as our daughter Kayla was entering the 10th grade. She hated her new school & begged us to home school her. I told her that if after two weeks she still couldn’t stand her new classes we’d get her out. What I was thinking was that given two weeks she would make the adjustment & everything would be fine. The reality was that her nerves were becoming more & more unglued. We ended up home schooling her throughout her senior high experience.

Have you ever made a promise not thinking you’d really have to back it up but then had to do just that? God gave humanity authority to rule over the earth. If Adam & Eve & every one of their descendants had remained obedient to the Lord that decision would have worked out a lot better than it has. Nonetheless, we still carry God-given authority as human beings. We use that authority well when we pray. We invite the Lord’s power, wisdom & knowledge into this world when we ask for His help. As the song says, “we need to pray like never before.”

Pastor Joel Everhart

September 15, 2019

It’s been said that one snowflake never hurt anyone but when it gets together with enough of its kind they can stop traffic. Today we begin a new series on prayer by talking about the accumulative effect of our prayers. The Bible says, “If my people will humble themselves & pray … I will heal their land.” Jesus taught us to keep on asking for what we need. Let’s create a snowstorm of prayer in heaven! If all of us participate & we keep on asking, heaven is sure to notice.

Christmas is only three months away! Soon we’ll be trading our shorts & shirt sleeves in for long johns & mittens. Jesus is coming again soon; we’ll be trading these old bodies & all our earthly problems in for glorified bodies & everlasting peace. Don’t waste these few short days you have left – pray.

Pastor Joel Everhart

September 8, 2019

I do a lot of my cooking from memory of the recipes I’ve used in the past. Usually this works out well. Occasionally I’ll miss an ingredient that isn’t obvious but makes a difference. For example, confidant I had all the necessary ingredients in my Green Pepper Soup, I thought to check the recipe just to be sure. Sure enough I’d neglected to put in a cube of beef bouillon! The soup would have been fine but not quite as flavorful as usual.

When sharing the gospel with someone its helpful to look at the recipe to be sure you aren’t missing a key ingredient. We’ll be considering that recipe in today’s message.

Pastor Joel Everhart

September 1, 2019

My wife has battled a fever for months. The funny thing is she’ll often feel hot when her temperature is 99.4 & feel like she’s freezing when its over 100. There have been times this past summer when I sat wrapped in a blanket while she sat in shorts with an ice pack with the AC & ceiling fan running full tilt. She will often ask me if I feel hot or cold because she knows she can’t trust her own impressions to be valid.

The reason Paul gives us rules to follow as we worship is because there are times when we are not the best judge of whether what we feel we ought to do to express our praise is beneficial to everyone in the church or not. It’s easy to get excited & carried away while thinking everyone else is lacking spiritual fervor. Or we may think that someone who shouts out a word of praise to be overly zealous when in fact they may be very pleasing to the Lord. It’s good to trust others when we’re trying to determine the “temperature in the room.” Am I helping others in the body draw closer to the Lord or distracting them from their own worship experience? Follow the rules & you’ll be fine.

Pastor Joel Everhart

August 25, 2019

I have a friend, who shall remain nameless (you know who you are!), who made a box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese but thought the milk & butter were optional. We call that a cooking fail. The result was not at all appetizing. Imagine getting your tastebuds primed for some smooth, cheesy mac & cheese only to be met with dry, chalky glop.

Love is the butter & milk of life. Without it everything is hard to digest & disappointing. However, when served with generous portions of love, even the hardest tasks in life take on a taste & texture that satisfies the soul. Show your friends & family some love today. Actually, don’t limit it to people you know &/or love; become like a little ray of sunshine to everyone you meet.

Pastor Joel Everhart

August 18, 2019

There was a very nice older couple that attended our church when I was a boy: the Richardsons. Brother Richardson (as we called him in those days) had made his living as a coal miner. However, he was also a gifted craftsman. We visited his home once & marveled at some of the sculptures he’d produced. One that stands out in my memory is a Lincoln head penny carved out of a piece of coal, maybe six or eight inches in diameter. He was able to carve wood, coal, or stone & worked with silver too. It was kind of a shame that he spent so many years mining coal when his gifts could have created more works of art that would have been cherished long after he went on to be with the Lord.

Perhaps he never trusted his skills enough to make the leap from a steady paycheck to becoming an established artist. Maybe providing for his family took precedence over everything else. Only after he retired from the mines did he have time to market some of his treasures & he became a bit of a local celebrity. Got any gifts that are lying dormant while earning a paycheck? Do what you can to work in areas where you are gifted. More than making some money, you just might change the world.

Pastor Joel Everhart

August 11, 2019

There’s an old Garfield (the cat) cartoon where Jon (his owner) is putting sauce on a pizza one tablespoonful at a time. Garfield asks why he doesn’t just dump a bunch of sauce on the dough then spread it around with the spoon. John goes into a lengthy explanation of the precision & care with which he places each spoonful. As soon as Garfield leaves the kitchen Jon dumps a bunch of sauce on the pizza.

In theory we are all open to new ideas & are humble enough to take advice from anyone. In practice, however, we often go to great lengths to protect our pride rather than yield to good advice. Why isn’t our natural instinct to be thankful rather than defensive when someone is kind enough to suggest something that will make our life easier & our work more productive? It may not come naturally, but we can train ourselves to graciously accept constructive suggestions.

Pastor Joel Everhart

August 4, 2019

When I pastored in Shanksville, PA, we had coal furnaces in both the parsonage & the church. In the parsonage there was a low beam that ran through the doorway that separated the coal cellar from the main part of the basement. I can’t tell you how many times I hit my head on that beam!

One day I met the guy who had preceded me in that church & I asked him if he’d ever hit his head on that beam. He showed me a scar on his head & said, “You’re lucky, there used to be a bolt that hung down from that beam. I cracked my scull on it one day & had to get stiches. As soon as I got home from the hospital I borrowed a torch & cut it off.”

Eventually, of course, I learned to duck every time I got a shovel full of coal from that room but my how many lumps on the head it took to learn my lesson! May we not be so slow to learn what Paul is trying to teach us in today’s text: every sin we commit leaves a nasty bruise & if we keep it up it will kill us.

Pastor Joel Everhart

July 28, 2019

We were playing kickball with the kids at the picnic this past June. One of the older boys figured out that if he just “bunted” the ball he could get on base. I sent him back to the plate saying, “Kick it like a man! It’s better to kick it hard & make an out than kick it like a baby & get on base.” From then on “Kick it like a man!” became the chant regardless of the gender of the kicker.

When it comes to serving the Lord, “Kick it like a man.” Make your life count for Christ. Swing for the fences: live to love, serve & bless God. If you are going to be passionate about anything, let it be Jesus.

Pastor Joel Everhart

July 21, 2019

Barb & I visited a restaurant recently. As I drove up to park, I noticed an open space right up front. One space over a lady was sitting with her door open & her feet dangling from the passenger seat. As I slowly approached I was sure she would hop out & make her way to the sidewalk by the time I got there. She just sat there. I turned my van away at the last second & parked elsewhere thinking the woman to be a real jerk. As we walked to the front door I noticed her husband pulling a walker out of the back of their vehicle. She was no jerk, I was. She was waiting for her wheels.

People are full of surprises. Some of those surprises catch us off guard or even offend us. If we are going to get along well with others; if we are going to love them, we need to learn how to process differences quickly & resist the temptation to “Black List” someone just because they have a different point of view than we do. Things just might not be as they appear.

Pastor Joel Everhart

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