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Pastor's Blog
Saturday, January 06 2024
Let it snow! I always think of being washed white as snow when it snows! Maybe that's why I love it so much!
Good Morning Snowflakes! (I know some of you are thinking, "What a flake he is!" Maybe I am but I am a very loved, forgiven much, custom made, child of God. PTL! (So are you!) I am sent to touch many with God's love and help them to understand the Good News that they too can become white as snow. (So are you!) (Use me/us Lord!) And I think about how the harvest fields are white unto harvest and how God is bringing in the harvest and how we need more harvest workers and to sow lavishly so we can multiply the harvest. Are you a snowflake? Touching many with God's purifying love, beautifying the dead landscape around you, watering the sown seeds? Oh that we would become a dynamic movement of God doing those things and multiplying His harvest! 
When I think of snowy days, I see a piling up of many blessings too and praise God for how blessed we are. I am also reminded of how eventually, like the melting snow, we are to use up His provisions until we have poured ourselves out and offered wisely, patiently our all for His glory. He has great plans for you, even on snowy days. What's He saying to you as you get to spend some time in His peaceful loving presence. Turn off the noise! (What's it matter if we get all rain or 100 inches? God is in control and has a plan.) All I see and hear when I tune into the hype is an example of the enemy's tactics to distract, rile us up, have us be all worried about things we can do nothing about. Turn off that noise! Be still as a snowy field. Know that He is God and that He is bringing His shalom to the chaos. Take advantage of this opportunity to spend more time with God, to encourage others and pray, to be still and receive, and to rest and renew. It's a great opportunity to focus on your blessing, praise God and build those gratitude lists. It's a great opportunity to thank God for the word He gave you to work on this past year, the growth towards it as you pursued His best for you, and to talk to Him about what words He may want you to focus on this year.
I love how God comes to life as I write these blogs after inviting Him to come write them through me! My original plan was to use our devos (I'll let you use whatever you have) to talk about how God is always with us working out His plans. My original salutation was going to be "Good Morning Followers of Jesus and Practitioners of His Way." WWJD? He loved well, made new life available, trained some disciples to carry on His Kingdom plan as they spread the Good News and He taught them the Way to do it but allowed them to do it the way they were created and then gifted and empowered to go love well like Him and make disciples. And here we are today! PTL! He has a plan for you and us and is making a way for fruit to come as we trust, obey, love well and go make disciples His way, just as we are with what we got. Let's pray into that and work on that more in '24! How can we help each other follow His way more in '24? How can we become more of who we were created to be and doing more of the things we were created to do? Talk to Him about that today and in the weeks ahead. Ask Him to give you two words: a "BE" Word to work on becoming more of who you were created to be and a "DO" word, a word to work on that will help you do more of the things you were created to do for such a time as this.
God has a great plan for you, just as you are. He has greater things instore as you follow His Way and grow into your purposes. PTL! Cry out for God to grow His Kingdom through you and us that we would see it multiplying dramatically like a blizzard and not just adding a dusting of new believers, Pray that we would become a dynamic movement of God and a disciple-making hub of prepared, equipped and sent out disciple makers. Pray for our vision team to understand where we are and where God is leading and to join Him on His mission for us. Thank Him for all He is and will do! What's He saying to you as you pray? Write it down and let's pray and discuss it. Come Lord! Revive us and bring revival. Prepare us and move us to follow You well into the future You have planned for us. Help us to sow lavishly of ourselves and your provisions and see exponential, blizzard-like expansion of Your Kingdom. May Your Kingdom come and Your will be done in, through and around us. Father, thank You! Jesus, we ask in Your name, to be our Shepherd, Teacher and Leader as we learn to live and love more like You in the year and years ahead. You are the Way and You bring the Word of Life. Bring them alive in and though us for Your glory. Thank You! Amen!
Yeah, I'm pretty cool with being a snowflake! I am different. That's how I was made. And I am not of this world. PTL! God has custom plans for me just as He created me. And the same is true for each of you. May you seek Him more in '24 and allow Him more access in '24 to you and His guidance! May you know His shalom more in '24 too. be still and know! Understand and follow well. That's His plan for you, snowflake!
Enjoy this day as you get to have more time with God and more time to encourage and pray for others! Allow His Shalom to fill you today! And worship!
Below are some words to pray about possibly working on this year: God has a plan just for you!
These are the words some of worked on in '23:

Faith, hope, peace, time, value, understanding, bold, change, patience, pause, energy, stewardship, useful, courage, relationships, restoration, rest, agape and discipleship

Here is a chart of Spiritual Gifts. Maybe there is a word there God is stirring you to explore and work on? (We will begin talking about spiritual gifts next week)

Biblical and theological overview 

The New Testament contains several lists of spiritual gifts, most in the Pauline epistles. While each list is unique, there is overlap.

Romans 12:6–8

1 Corinthians 12:8–10

1 Corinthians 12:28–30

Ephesians 4:11

1 Peter 4:11

1.    Prophecy

2.    Serving

3.    Teaching

4.    Exhortation

5.     Giving

6.    Leadership

7.     Mercy

1.     Word of wisdom

2.     Word of knowledge

3.     Faith

4.     Gifts of healings

5.     Miracles

6.     Prophecy

7.    Distinguishing between spirits

8.     Tongues

9.    Interpretation of tongues

1.     Apostle

2.     Prophet

3.     Teacher

4.     Miracles

5.     Kinds of healings

6.     Helps

7.    Administration

8.     Tongues

1.    Apostle

2.    Prophet

3.    Evangelist

4.    Pastor

5.    Teacher

1.    Whoever speaks

2.    Whoever renders service[10]

Other spiritual gifts 

While not specifically defined as spiritual gifts in the Bible, other abilities and capacities have been considered as spiritual gifts by some Christians. Some are found in the New Testament such as:

·        celibacy (1 Corinthians 7:7)[42]

·        fellowship[43]

·        hospitality (1 Peter 4:9–10)[44]

·        intercession (Romans 8:26–27)[44]

·        marriage (1 Corinthians 7:7)[45]

·        (effective) witnessing (Acts 1:8, 5:32, 26:22, 1 John 5:6)[44]

Others are found in the Old Testament such as:

·        craftsmanship (such as the special abilities given to artisans who constructed the Tabernacle in Exodus 35:30–33)[44]

·        interpretation of dreams (e.g. Joseph and Daniel) in Genesis 43-50, Daniel 2

·        composing spiritual music, poetry, and prose[44]

Posted by: AT 11:55 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
St. Matthew's EC Church

5th & Ridge Streets
P.O. Box 433
Emmaus, PA 18049
Telephone 610.965.5570


We are learning to live and love like Jesus. 

We are working on becoming who we were created to be and doing our custom made purposes well. 

We are part of the Evangelical Congregational Church

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