The View From My Window Pastor's Weekly Blog



April 4, 2021

One morning I carried my running shoes in from the garage and set them down on the mat just inside our front door. I sat down, picked up the right shoe and proceeded to put it on my foot but there was obviously something in it. I pulled my foot out, held it up so I could look inside and out jumped a cricket! Apparently, crickets can’t smell else he’d have never taken up residence in one of my running shoes. Or, could it be that this particular cricket had been bad and the others had sentenced him to a night in the shoe?

However it was that he ended up in my shoe, his sudden evacuation of the same gave me quite a start. The unexpected will do that to you. Jesus’ disciples did not expect Him to rise from the dead. They had trouble believing it was true. Seeing Him again was shocking, delightful, intriguing, freaky and marvelous. His sudden aliveness brought fear, joy and a tremendous change of plans. Indeed, this changes everything.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

March 28, 2021

Because I now attend a number of Zoom meetings from behind my desk, I’ve been working on the wall behind me. I started out with just a blank white wall. That lacked depth, perspective, warmth; it oozed blankness. I’ve experimented with different pictures but haven’t yet found the right combination. Staging matters, it sets a tone, it sends a message. Jesus walked for many miles to get to Jerusalem, then when He’s within sight of the city He asks for a donkey to ride. This is staging at its finest; Jesus is sending a message. It’s not that He’s tired and needs help finishing the journey. If He were entering Jerusalem today to do now what He did then, what kind of a vehicle do you think He’d choose? Why?

-Pastor Joel Everhart

March 21, 2021

As we approach Palm Sunday and Easter, I’d like us to consider the power of a crowd. Numbers of people matter. Crowds can get out of control or be a force for good. Crowds can get it wrong. Crowds can get it right. The message of a crowd can get hijacked. Individuals can suddenly feel out of place in a crowd they willingly joined. Crowds can inspire persons within its circumference to do things they normally wouldn’t do.

We will be rewarded for being members of the right crowd and punished for being members of the wrong crowd. Being in a crowd does not excuse ill behavior. Not joining a good crowd can also be a crying shame; it is to miss out on being a force for good. There’s a big crowd of people going to hell but there’s also quite a few who are going to heaven. To choose not to belong to either is to waste your influence. Be wary of crowds but when you find a good one, get onboard.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

March 14, 2021

We were hoping that when the new year came it would bring a change of “luck”. The books would close on a troubled 2020 and a fresh new page would appear where we could write a series of joyful testimonies birthed out of last year’s trials. Yet, some of the old troubles linger while new ones appear on the horizon. History has taught us that some periods are better than others. What if we’re in the middle or even at the beginning of a prolonged time of distress? What if our area is affected by a disaster like the one that recently swept across the country causing blackouts and severe shortages of basic necessities? Please be sure to have at least a small supply of food and water on hand as well as an alternative source of heat but beyond that there is help for every believer.

Jesus warned us of troubled times ahead and He helps us to mentally prepare to endure them. We need to stop feeling like victims of a cruel joke and understand that whatever we face, we are promised to have all that we need to triumph. Lift up your eyes! Not only is our redemption drawing near, we are never left hopeless or helpless in the meantime. I’ve got some bad news for you today that should help us switch our thinking from exhausted misery to determined overcomer.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

March 7, 2021

We once had a cute little dog that loved to sit in my lap or against my hip, and who would sometimes bite me. I was never really sure whether I was going to get kissed or bitten. She always looked sad after nailing me and would lick the wound she inflicted. She died young.

Talk about Jekyll & Hyde, we’re moving on from studying the dysfunctional church in Corinth to the dedicated believers in Ephesus. The church in Ephesus was forged in the fires of persecution and came out stronger than the forces of paganism, idolatry and social pushback. If II Corinthians serves as a warning to churches not to backslide into fleshly thinking, Ephesians helps us understand how valued we are by God and reveals His great plans for our future. Paul says such audacious things in this book about us in our relationship to the Lord that if it wasn’t written in Scripture, I wouldn’t believe it and it’s all good.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Keep fasting: My flesh is squirrelly; it keeps finding ways to express itself and assert its dark ways even as I strive to follow Jesus. I can be proud of how humble I’ve become, satisfied with my spiritual growth, distracted by good works I’m involved in, none of which is good. Perhaps worst of all for me is when my appetite for sweets gets ahold of me. I’ll be doing just fine avoiding those foods that are low on nutrition and high on calories for months. I feel good. I’m satisfied. But then, for whatever reason, I “take a taste”. “Surely, I can handle a taste.” “All things in moderation.” “A little doesn’t hurt.” Although all those statements are true, they lead to my ruin. I start with a taste, perhaps a cookie. A cookie a day isn’t bad. A cookie a day becomes two that eventually leads to cake and what is cake without ice cream? My pants get tight, my shirts snug. What happened? My flesh did it to me again; it squirrelled its way back into convincing me I’m starving 24/7 and need another bite of whatever.

Oh, to be in control again! That’s one of the reasons a season of fasting is so important to me. Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit. When I’m out from under self-control I know I’m not under the Spirit’s control to the degree I need to be. Looking forward to fasting is like looking forward to going to the dentist but it’s also looking forward to a new birth of freedom from my addictions. Start yearning to be free from things that hold you back: anger, bad habits, painful thoughts, etc. Then ask God to help you formulate a plan to break those chains that bind you. Let that be your fasting journey for 2021.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

Sunday, February 21, 2021

This morning we’re going to talk about the skill of self-management:  the ability to adjust our reactions and responses to others and to situations so that we contribute appropriately to the narrative. Proper feedback helps to calm others down, defuse circumstances and make things better for most, if not all, involved. Are you one who generally helps to lower the temperature in the room or often “raise the roof”? Do you help others feel safe or frequently regret what you’ve said or done?

The Holy Spirit is a champion of self-management who produces all the good qualities that make us peacemakers in times of conflict, soothers in times of trauma, and encouragers when discouragement looms overhead. Allow Him to speak healing, peace and faith into your spirit today, developing those qualities that make us more like Jesus.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

Sunday, February 14, 2021

I’m starting to think we’re born messed up then acquire a few viruses in our programming even as we learn and grow. Through adulthood we try to discover what happened to us during our developmental years and repair what we can. Maybe this next mini series can help us identify some of our quirks and give us a few tools to help fix them. Here’s a road map to this series: 1) Self Awareness, 2) Self Management, 3) Social Awareness, 4) Relationship Management. As always, we’ll be using solid Biblical principals to help us navigate the waters of life. I’m really looking forward to it and hope you are too.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

February 7, 2021

There is a fine line between being encouraged and being content. When we can see measurable growth in our spiritual life it feels really good. It should spur us on to greater heights. Unfortunately, we sometimes conclude that we’ve come far enough. When following Jesus, there’s no such thing as “far enough”. He is a constantly moving leader. Jesus is never finished with us this side of Glory.

Allow the progress you’ve made to encourage you onward but don’t settle for where you’ve been; believe for more. More what? More worship, prayer, love, patience, excitement, joy, peace…more of the Lord in your life.

As we finish our study of II Corinthians, we can ask ourselves: is this book one of encouragement or warning, filled with warm greetings or harsh rebukes? The answer is, “yes”. Just like in life, there are areas where we deserve a pat on the back and there are zones where we need a swift kick in the rear. Fortunately, our God is good at both. Cherish your accomplishments and strive to overcome your weaknesses.

-Pastor Joel Everhart

Sunday, January 31, 2021

In prayer a couple weeks ago, Pastor Ray said he was very pleased with what this time in his life was like. As a younger man he never could have imagined what it would be like to be in his late 60’s but it’s better than he’d hoped. That’s a wonderful testimony, attitude, and perspective. It’s also a wonderful truth that should encourage all our younger folk. Generally speaking, if you keep following Jesus it does get better as time goes by.

Has your life been improving? Aside from temporary trials and momentary setbacks are you on the right track? God loves a good restoration project. If you’ve fallen into spiritual disrepair or even just drifted a little, the Lord loves bringing us back to Himself and reviving His joy, life & love in our soul. Ready for a tune up? The Master Mechanic is in the house today!

-Pastor Joel Everhart

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