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Pastor's Blog
Wednesday, April 24 2024

gOOD mORNING Abiding Peacemakers and Prayer Warriors! Today's blogs are all about that. Check them out! I'm off for follow doc visit before our Zoom huddle at 10 when we discuss our source of peace and power--abiding in the Vine. I'll let you space to still yourself, attach tothe Vine and receive His wisdom, love and peace. What's God saying to you today and what will you do about it? Know peace because you abide in the Prince of peace! Go bring His love and peace alive today! Shalom!


Jesus—The True Peacemaker

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. John 16:33

READ John 16:25-33


On December 30, 1862, the US Civil War raged. Union and Confederate troops camped seven hundred yards apart on opposing sides of Tennessee’s Stones River. As they warmed themselves around campfires, Union soldiers picked up their fiddles and harmonicas and began playing “Yankee Doodle.” In reply, the Confederate soldiers offered “Dixie.” Remarkably, both sides joined for a finale, playing “Home, Sweet Home” in unison. Sworn enemies shared music in the dark night, glimmers of an unimagined peace. The melodic truce was short-lived, however. The next morning, they put down their fiddles and picked up their rifles, and 24,645 soldiers died.

Our human efforts to create peace inevitably wear thin. Hostilities cease in one place, only to ignite somewhere else. One relational dispute finds harmony, only to be embroiled in distress again months later. The Scriptures tell us that God is our only trustworthy peacemaker. Jesus said it plainly, “In me you . . . have peace” (John 16:33). We have peace in Jesus. While we participate in His peacemaking mission, it’s God’s reconciliation and renewal that make real peace possible.

Christ tells us we can’t escape conflict. “In this world [we] will have trouble,” Jesus says. Strife abounds. “But take heart!” He adds, “I have overcome the world” (v. 33). While our efforts often prove futile, our loving God (v. 27) makes peace in this fractious world.

By Winn Collier


Where do you see humans working for peace? How is God’s peacemaking different?

Dear God, please show me the way of peace.

For further study, read Finding Peace in a Troubled World.

Finding Peace in a Troubled World

Just knowing that Jesus would soon be gone was an overwhelming thought for the disciples. But in the midst of th...


Preparing His disciples for His arrest and death, Jesus warned that they too would face difficult times and persecution (John 15:20; 16:2, 32). Christ comforted His distraught disciples with the provision of heaven, the promise of the Holy Spirit, and His abiding presence and peace (chs. 14-16). Jesus offered them and us the much-needed gift of peace: “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27 nlt). Living in a world broken by sin and devastated by pain and suffering, we have God’s promised peace: “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal” (Isaiah 26:3-4).

UR:Despite not Because

Give thanks in all circumstances. - 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV)

I have often heard it said that “God will never give us more than we can handle.” Yet, there are times in our lives when this is simply not true, and such statements ring hollow.

Perhaps the biblical passages that are used to promote this idea have been misinterpreted. For example, 1 Corinthians 10:13 is a verse commonly cited, but it is about temptation rather than suffering.

Passages like 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 and James 1:2 tell us to rejoice always. But being told to rejoice when we have lost a loved one or are facing a life-altering health diagnosis can seem cruel.

The command to rejoice in our suffering, however, is about rejoicing in Jesus despite our circumstances, not because of our circumstances. What a difference that understanding can make when trials come! It is much easier to rejoice in Jesus and what he has done for us than to rejoice in the difficulties we face.

Understanding these passages better has helped me lift my gaze from very difficult circumstances to God, who is with us every step of the way, offering hope, joy, and encouragement in the midst of life’s most troublesome times.


Heavenly Father, thank you for being with us in our suffering. Help us to rejoice in you despite our circumstances, not because of them. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.TWFYT:

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Dave's Blog:


by Dave Butts

“But You are our Father, though Abraham does not know us or Israel acknowledge us; You, O Lord, are our Father, our Redeemer from of old is Your name” (Isaiah 63:16).

This scripture passage has a powerful and much-needed statement of faith. In spite of the poor spiritual condition of the nation and their estrangement from God, His people still spoke out by faith the truth that God was their Father. It was an essential step for them. There was every indication that the presence of God had been removed. God, earlier in this passage, declared that He was fighting against them. But in their repentance and sorrow, they held on to the truth of their covenant relationship with God as their Father. It was a breakthrough moment.

How often we need those breakthrough moments. Christians everywhere are living below their spiritual potential. Prayers go unanswered. God seems far away.  We wonder about our relationship with Him. It is time to speak by faith who He is and who we are in Christ. When we wonder and doubt whether revival can ever come again, it is time to hold on to the truth of God’s Word–that Jesus is coming for a Bride who is pure and holy, adorned in white . . . a church that has been revived!

Father, how we love to call You by this name! You are indeed our Eternal Father. We have been brought into Your family through Jesus Christ, adopted as sons and daughters, and sealed with Your precious Spirit. Give us boldness to speak Your Word by faith, even when the circumstances around us seem to go against it. We believe You, Lord, more than our circumstances. Thank You for the unchanging nature of Your Word.

Harvest Prayer:

April 23 - The Reward of Prevailing Prayer

Prayer is not directionless. God has agendas for us in prayer, both immediate and eternal. He is always taking us somewhere when we are intentionally pursuing Him in prayer.

Anna had been praying, and the Lord had been preparing her and the world around her for the greatest manifestation of God’s presence in human history. “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we saw His glory” (John 1:14).

His coming involved preparation. It called for believing people to cooperate with God to prepare a highway for the Messiah. Only heaven will unveil to us what was being accomplished through Anna’s decades of believing prayer. Perhaps it was to make her so familiar with God that she would recognize Him when He came. It gave her eyes to see. Perhaps it was to prepare a whole generation to see. Perhaps it was for us to see.

Anna persevered in prayer and was one of the fortunate ones who saw Christ in human flesh. Her prayers paved the way for His coming.

People who pray have a heightened sense of God. Because they are constantly with God in prayer, when He manifests Himself they are instantly aware that it is Him. Conversely, they know when Christ is not present—even when others claim that He is.

Anna was privileged to live for years in the place closest to the Throne, and then to see and instantly recognize and rejoice in the physical answer to her prayers.

She prayed night and day. And so must we.

Lord Jesus, what a joy it must have been for Anna to see You face to face after so many years of faithful prayer. Would You teach me to pray as she prayed? Please give me Anna’s deep desire to pray without ceasing. I want to live in Your presence, to pray with expectation towards all that You are getting ready to do in the midst of Your people!

---Adapted from Prayer with No Intermission by Bill Elliff. This book is available at

Prayer Points

  • Praise God for his jealousy toward you (Zech. 8:1-3; Ex. 20:5-6) that roots out rivals for your love or unfaithfulness on your part.
  • Thank God for such love that will not let you go.
  • Confess times at which you have not given God your undivided love and allegiance.
  • Commit yourself to being exclusively devoted to him.
  • Ask God to give you an undivided heart and life for him.
  • Pray that God’s Spirit will convince your neighbors or coworkers that his love is for them. Ask him to use you in the process, showing you specific ways to put love into action.
Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend. This book is available at Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
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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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