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Friday, May 10 2024

Thank God I'm Forgiven Friday! PTL! What are you thankful about today?

It was Friday, but Sunday is coming! Rejoice! Things aren't always as they appear in God's Kingdom. Be still and know that He is God. Seek and keep knocking for the door will be open to you is a promise. If you hear the knocking, open the door and let Jesus in. He wants to come in to you and refresh you, hang with you and even feed you! PTL! Turn off the noise and tune into shalom! You are God's creation. He's calling you by name and has great plans for you to discover and grow into. That all began when you realized Jesus died for you and you invited Him into your heart. Spend some time worshiping and resting in your Savior and King today! Begin with those gratitude lists. I started with about 30 thank you's as I praised God for all that He is and does and His many, many blessings upon me/us and that just flowed into an awesome time of worship, dwelling, listening and receiving. Below are some journal notes from my time with God. Do you journal? You should try it sometime, even if it's just writing down your gratitude's for the day to carry with you and build your day upon.

I'm thankful that God created me in His image. I'm thankful for His created variety and that He made me unique for His unique purpose for me for such a time as this! I'm thankful that He is with me always working together all things for good and according to His will. I'm thankful for forgiveness and new life in Christ and for God growing me to be more like Him. I'm thankful that Jesus leads me beside still waters, refreshes and restores as I dwell in His presence. I'm thankful for His healthy rhythm of leading me from rest to fruit production. I'm thankful for pruning and renewing of my mind that allows me to grow and be transformed more into His image. I'm thankful for all of you and for God bringing us together to worship, learn, grow and go make disciples of Jesus. I'm thankful that He wants me to come just as I am and uses me just as I am but also wants to grow and change me. I'm thankful for His patient love! I'm thankful for the harvest He is sending and new workers He is raising up. I'm thankful for answered prayers, even the no, or not yet answers. I' thankful that He is a God that is always doing something new and that we can discover and follow Him to it. I'm thankful for all the dreams and visions of His plans that He is bringing to you and me and that we can know them and work with others to process, plan and do them well. I'm thankful He is leading us out of the building this summer and that He has some great plans and new things for us to try. I'm thankful that I can't do it all and that He has led me to stop trying as I allow others to step into their anointing and gifts and begin using them. I'm thankful for our leadership team and the wisdom God has given us to seek and follow Him and plan to bring His plans alive as we steward well and wisely all His blessings. I'm thankful for Karen and our growing love for God and each other. I'm thankful that God has ministry for us together and apart and that He uses us. I'm thankful for His provision and protection for us. I'm thankful we are able to get away and recharge more often. I'm thankful for friends and ministries outside the church including the race track. I'm thankful for all God is doing as He teaches me and us to live, love, teach, lead and make disciples more like Jesus. I'm thankful that He is leading us to that more in '24! And the list continues! He is our Healer, Helper, Sustainer, Provision, Protection, Wisdom, Creator, Savior and Lord! Hallelujah! What are you thankful about? There is so much! Amen!

Check out the thread through our devotionals below! Wow! God speaks as we still ourselves at His feet and listen! PTL! How does He want you to apply what He's saying today? Who does He have for you to process, plana nd partner with? What are you going to do about it? Start with praise and then begin to follow step by step as you yoke to Jesus with some friends! He has great plans for you in this life but is preparing you for what He has in the next. PTL! He has some co-laborers for you. PTL! We are better together. PTL! He receives you just as you are and has plans for you just as you are for such a time as this. These plans include receiving and helping newbies to come to Jesus and be changed. God's in the business of helping us and others to shed the old nature, step more fully into the new and grow all to His eternal purposes! PTL that we were one way and now another and growing into our fuller potential! PTL that He is sending some raw material to us to help to become like Jesus. PTL that we are accepting and loving of all and patient like Jesus with His confused, lost, rebellious and wayward children. PTL that He has great plans He will carry out to completion and that they include you and all who will come! Just PTL and worship and may you offer yourself as an offering--a sacrifice of praise today! Amen! 

What can you add to these lists as you spend some time at Jesus' feet and meditate on the devos? Come! Let us worship the Lord! And may our lives be a sacrifice of praise as we learn to live and love more like Jesus everyday! Amen!

Here's a great tune: Sacrifice of Praise:


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Serving Together in Jesus

You sent me aid more than once when I was in need. Philippians 4:16

READ Philippians 4:14-20


Rescue workers cooperated to help three men stranded on an island in Micronesia. Teamwork was necessary because a widespread health crisis required them to limit their exposure to each other. The pilot who first spotted the castaways radioed a nearby Australian Navy ship. The ship sent two helicopters which provided food, water, and medical care. Later, the US Coast Guard arrived to check on the men and deliver a radio. Finally, a Micronesian patrol boat taxied them to their destination.

We can accomplish a lot when we work together. The Philippian believers pooled their efforts to support the apostle Paul. Lydia and her family welcomed him into their home (Acts 16:13-15). Clement and even Euodia and Syntyche (who didn’t get along) all worked directly with the apostle to spread the good news (Philippians 4:2-3). Later, when Paul was imprisoned in Rome, the church gathered essentials for a care package and delivered it via Epaphroditus (vv. 14-18). Perhaps most importantly, the Philippians prayed for him throughout his ministry (1:19).

The examples of believers serving together in this ancient church can inspire us today. Cooperating with fellow believers to pray and serve others as God leads and empowers us accomplishes much more than we could ever do on our own. It has been said, “Individually, we are one drop. Together we are an ocean.”

By Jennifer Benson Schuldt


When have you served well with other believers in Jesus? What’s the basis for the spiritual bond you share with them?

Dear God, please show me how to join with others who are serving You.


Named for Philip II (father of Alexander the Great), the city of Philippi lay in Macedonia. The church in Macedonia received high praise from Paul. Not only were the Macedonians quick to respond to his needs, in this case they were the only church to do so (Philippians 4:15). Additionally, he notes, “You sent me aid more than once when I was in need” (v. 16). Indeed, in 2 Corinthians 8, Paul pointed to the economically poor Macedonian church as an example for the wealthy church in Corinth: “In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity” (v. 2). This is the context in which the apostle writes the oft-quoted verse, “My God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

Tim Gustafson

UR: No Questions Asked

Jesus said to [the disciples], “There’s no need to send them away. You give them something to eat.” - Matthew 14:16 (CEB)

My church operates two food pantries. One is for USDA food and requires income verification. The other provides food donated by local grocery stores. I especially enjoy serving in this pantry because we feed anyone who comes seeking food. We do not ask their income, why they need the food, or any other such questions. We ask how they are doing and try to brighten their day with loving smiles and words of encouragement along with the food.

In the Gospel stories of Jesus feeding the multitudes, there is no record of Jesus asking the people if they needed food or if they were believers. He simply asked his disciples to feed the people.

As I serve in the food pantry, I know that I am quietly preaching a sermon on the love of Jesus. Some of the people we have fed now help us with this ministry, even though they are not members of our church. Standing with them to feed others is one of my great joys. I am grateful to be able to minister in this way, no questions asked.


Dear Lord, as you have poured out your grace on us, so may we freely share your love and grace with others at every opportunity. To God be the glory. Amen.


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Harvest Prayer blogs:

April 26 - Contend for Godly Children

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate. (Psalm 127:3–5) 

Psalm 127:3–5 tells us that our children are like arrows in a warrior’s hand, taking down our enemy, waging war against injustice and shining boldly for the glory of his name. These verses, while powerful, prove to be heartbreaking for many as we see the children of most Christians living as less than conquerors. Our God has designed the family to be one of his greatest weapons to wage war against sin and destruction. He has called our children to be mighty in and for him. Let’s fight for them in prayer. Let’s believe that Jesus can apprehend their hearts and make them revivalists who live with power and love in a weak and hate-filled world. 

Our Father, thank you for our children. We know that it was your providence and your grace that created them and placed them in our families. We are grateful for the honor of raising them, guiding them and loving them. We repent of every way we have failed to honor you in our homes. We ask forgiveness for exalting material gain, social status and even education as more important than knowing you. Today, would you begin a work of deep and lasting change in our children? Would you turn their hearts to you and make them bold witnesses of your love, power and truth? Make them agents of change, weapons of grace in a dark and depraved world. Use them to bring many to salvation. Protect them from every assault of the enemy and embolden them with the power of your word to fight the good fight of faith. Open the eyes of their hearts to know the hope to which you have called them and to live in the inheritance that has been purchased for them through your blood. 

Give us hearts for adult children who may not have godly parents to pray for them. Open wide our hearts to welcome them into our circles of prayer and to cover them daily. Empower and equip this next generation to wage war against all injustice and to stand strong in the power of your might. Use them to bring revival and to spread the loving message of your gospel throughout the earth. We thank you for sharing this next generation with us; we are grateful to join with them so that all the earth may rejoice in you.

--Adapted from Praying God’s Word Over Your City: 40 Days of Prayer for A Transformed Community by Trey and Mary Anne Kent. This book is available at Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.

Prayer Points

  • Praise God as the God of truth.
  • Thank him for replacing the facades of your life with the substantive realities of his truth.
  • Confess any time you’ve rejected difficult aspects of that truth for the appealing glitter of Satan’s lies.
  • Commit yourself to honesty with God, other people, and yourself.
  • Ask God to lead you into fuller and fuller application of his truth to your lifestyle.
  • Pray that such truth-oriented living will break through the lies the Deceiver has used with unsaved neighbors. Ask God to speak his truth in love to one of them through you today.
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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