The View From My Window Pastor's Weekly Blog

November 2, 2014

I was walking my dog on Saturday when a group of senior citizen bicyclists rode past. A word about Spandex: no. Best case scenario is that you are young and firm and Spandex looks good on you (2% of the population). If that is the case you may be causing a brother or sister to have impure thoughts.

Then there is the segment of the population that thinks they are young and firm but are not (80% of the population). Depending on the individual, these people can cause reactions from a mild chuckle to full blown nausea to passersby.

Finally we have the 18% of Americans who realize they are neither young nor firm but still think that a black Spandexy version of the Michelin Man is hot. These usually have trouble keeping significant portions of their body in the Spandex. Peddling down the street looking as though you are giving birth to a baby rhino – well that’s an image we could all live without.

So I’m pleading with our younger people for a return to Biblical modesty if for no other reason than to set a good example for their grandparents.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

October 19, 2014

I drove through the Hanover Panera Bread the other day to pick up a salad for lunch. The young lady at the window leaned out and said, “Hello beautiful, you’re cute…” The compliments went on and on like that through the entire transaction! If that’s not weird enough very similar things have been happening to me on a regular basis.

It’s not unusual for me to be taking a walk through our neighborhood and have a woman slow her car, roll down her window and say, “What a cutie!” Ladies get a grip! Fortunately I’ve had my Yorkie puppy along every time this has happened – it would have been all the more embarrassing if I had been alone.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

October 12, 2014

I started writing this post and I felt something scratching the top of my shoe. Looking down I saw my Yorkie looking up. When our eyes met she stepped back — meaning that she wanted to go out rather than get picked up (I speak Yorkshire). So we went out for the fourth time this morning. Coming back in she didn’t want to follow me up the stairs to my office; she wanted to stay in the gym. Rather than try to chase a Yorkie (useless for me, fun for her) I hid behind the door until she came to find me. I was banking on the hope that she would rather be with me in the office than free to roam around on her own. It took a little while but sure enough she scooted past the door and headed up the stairs.

I believe God works on the same principle with us. He could chase after us but He prefers that we turn away from our agendas to pursue Him. As long as we think there’s something better He’ll let us go but when we finally realize that we’d rather be with Him on His terms than on our own He welcomes us into His arms, into His embrace, into His presence, into His divine world filled with everything wonderful.

As I finish this piece Callie is peacefully sleeping on a blanket atop my desk surrounded by toys and treats. Yeah, you can keep doing whatever it is you think is going to satisfy you but my advice is to pursue God once again, like you used to when you first got saved or the last time you truly felt alive in Him.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

October 5, 2014

I ran into the local funeral director this morning at the Post Office. He asked how the church was doing and I said, “It’s good, we have a lot of really nice people in our church.” He responded, “Yes, you really do.”

You have a very good reputation around town! The thing that is most impressive to me lately is how hard so many of you are working. Quite a few of you have been involved in digging, raking, carrying, wiring, etc. And many of those doing the grunt work also fill many of the offices in the church. Andy & Mel along with Bob & Angie were seen out raking rocks all day last Saturday. Joe was here almost every evening the week before. Rick gave us one of his vacation to fill in some ditches. Emily & Vickie have been providing food for the workers … and the list goes on and on.

I’d have to say I love to work but I don’t do nearly as much of it as many of you who are serving for the sheer joy of blessing the Lord and one of His churches. Suddenly I’m feeling guilty for not mentioning others of you who work so hard among us, like Pastor LeRoy & Wanda, Ron, several Debs, Dave, Mike … and I’m not even going to mention my most favorite worker of all …

– Pastor Joel Everhart

September 28, 2014

Okay, it’s fall. I love fall. I just hate what’s next. Alright, hate is (perhaps) too strong a word. The Bible instructs us to give thanks in all things. I suppose winter is a thing therefore I need to learn to be thankful not only in winter but for winter. Pray for me (and for you, too, if you have a similar bend).

I know a few strange people that love winter; I’m hoping to become like them. Actually, there is a lot to enjoy about the season: the holidays, there’s something romantic about the first snow of the season, a fresh coating of snow can be beautiful and makes soup and a hot cup of tea special … I really wouldn’t mind the winter at all if it didn’t get so cold.

Cold — that’s it. That’s what I strongly dislike about winter. Even normal cold is bearable; it’s those winter chills! Do people who love winter not feel wind chills? Is it a mindset? Can I have certain brain cells cauterized so that I don’t mind the cold? Can they do that without making me drool at the time or lose the feeling in my left foot? I know what you’re thinking: Pastor needs all the brain cells he can get. Haha, very funny, everyone’s a comedian. If in ten years I’m loving winter, then I’ll know you prayed for me. But if I’m not, at least I’ll know who to blame.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

September 14, 2014

They say that dogs have a very keen sense of smell. We humans are often overcome by one rank smell (like the odor of a skunk or burned potatoes) whereas dogs are able to distinguish different scents in the air at the same time. Our primary sense for navigation is our sight; dogs can “smell where they’re going.” In a large crowd of people or out in the woods your dog is able to track you down because she knows your smell. If she could talk she could tell you everywhere you went on any given day just by smelling you when you got home. And, yes, they know if you’ve been with another dog!

Why then do dogs love to roll in poop? No wonder the Lord likens rebellious people to dogs:  they are treated to the finest the Lord has to offer but choose to roll in the “poop” of this world. I hope you have better sense than a dog. Find out what is truly worth living for and stay away from the you know what.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

September 7, 2014

If you know me very well, you know that I’m in mourning. The summer is over. I know, I know … it’s not “officially” over until some meaningless date passes but, trust me, it’s over.

The kids have been back to school for a while already, darkness comes a little earlier each evening, and the sun is sleeping in later each morning. When it rained it didn’t last several days in a row — it rained then the sun popped out again.

I know I should be thankful for the coming colors of fall, crisp autumn mornings and evenings, and football, but I just need a little time to deal with the loss of summer. It was a great sumer, wasn’t it? Alas, oh summer of 2014 we loved thee well. Rest in peace, for you were good to us.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

August 31, 2014

The most amazing thing happened this morning while I was out on my run. As I jogged past the Rite Aid on Eisenhower Drive their sign displayed the time and temperature as 5:59am and 60 degrees. When I got to the Dodge Dealership on the same street a block away their display said 5:58am and 64 degrees! I must have been running so fast that I actually caused time to go in reverse just like Superman did in one of his movies. Not only that but I heated up the planet by four degrees! It’s a good thing I only ran four miles — although we could all use a little extra time in our day — nobody likes a heat wave.

I wonder if I ran the other direction if the planet would get cooler? Oh my … the thought just hit me … what if I am personally responsible for global warming? I started running a little over 25 years ago and no one was talking about the planet heating up back then – only since! Please don’t share this column with anyone from the DER, EPA or Department of the Interior…

– Pastor Joel Everhart

August 24, 2014

Did you know we now have several stretches of highway in Pennsylvania that are posted with a 70 mph speed limit? While traveling home from Pittsburgh a few weeks ago I came upon one on the PA Turnpike. I told Barb, “Look at that! I’ve never seen a 70 mph speed limit sign in our state before!” A half mile later there were construction signs everywhere with a reduced speed of 55 mph. Isn’t that just like life?

You could really be making some time if it weren’t for this restriction or that delay. Our smooth sailing seems to be restricted to half-mile increments divided by ten-mile construction zones. Don’t despair, just ahead is an exit into a better land where the restrictions will be gone and we’ll be free forever. As the old hymn goes, “Just a few more weary days and then I’ll fly away!”

– Pastor Joel Everhart

August 17, 2014

What a great summer! Lower than normal temperatures, plenty of rain, everything is green and lush. I’d like to circulate a petition calling for this summer to be extended by an extra six months. That would put us somewhere in March to get started on next spring. I know March weather can be a little sketchy but, hey, after nine months of summer we’ll probably be ready for a little cool down. I know it might seem odd to have highs in the 70s for Christmas but I’m willing to give it a try.

You’re probably worried about all those people who make their money in the cold weather months like ski resorts and such. They could plant corn. Guys that plow snow could cut grass instead. The people that supply us with heating oil can go take a flying leap …err… I mean live off the profits from last winter and enjoy an extended vacation in the Sahara Desert.

The truth is … we’ll take whatever weather we get and be thankful that we live in a land where we can get cool when it’s hot and warm when it’s cold. As much as I enjoy complaining (I’m pretty good at it, don’t you think?) I’ve got a lot more to be thankful for. How about you?

– Pastor Joel Everhart

August 3, 2014

Suddenly my Dad is old. He’s 85 now so you might think I’ve been warming up to the idea of his senior status but you’d be wrong. While vacationing recently I had the opportunity to spend a day at my folks’ house helping them with some things they can no longer do for themselves. I did some painting, cleaned out the gutters and changed a light bulb in their kitchen overhead light. It was on that last job that Dad’s failing physical abilities became most evident. I got the ladder in position and he decided he could do the job so he climbed the couple steps but found he couldn’t extend his arms enough to get the globe off the fixture.

Just a few years ago, he and I carried a couch up a flight of stairs and I was surprised by his abilities even as I questioned every step he took (he’s had two bypass surgeries). Now after “supervising” me for a day he spent the whole next day in his recliner. Even his voice is sounding weak. I want to go back to the days when I’d tell him he shouldn’t be doing something and him proving me wrong. I want to go back tot he days when he’d say, “Don’t tell your mother we did this.”

There’s something very sobering about watching your father age. There’s something very comforting about knowing that a day of renewal is coming for all who are in Jesus Christ.

– Pastor Joel Everhart

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