Skip to main content
St. Matthew's EC Church
email usour facebook page
contact us
Pastor's Blog
Sunday, June 02 2024
Good Morning Gifted, Pruned, Cloaked in the Armor, Bold, Witnesses! AMEN! We all have the God given potential to be all of these and more as we earnestly pursue Christ and His best! Yes and Amen! Please Lord! Which of these may you need to work on? Could that be a word you choose as part of the Become More in '24 Challenge? Are you casting all your anxiety on the Lord, putting on His armor and working on reaching your created potential? Are you a fruit producer? What kind of fruit are you producing? Is there someone or a group of close friends that you have given permission to speak truth into your life and work with to move towards, not only your potential, but the greater things God has for your group? These and many more questions are things I discuss with God about me and our Body. Am I helping everyone to discover and fulfill their created purposes? Am I shedding the ugly, the good and better for God's best and following Him as I lead us to His plans for us? How can I help everyone see the need and want to do the same? This thinking is constantly with me and part of everyday. There is no vacation from it. God is always speaking to my heart and leading me to His plans, even in dreams. Am I doing all God created me to do and doing it earnestly? Am I really living, loving, teaching, leading and making disciples like Jesus? It's a fine line to balance rest and work, vacation, reloading and staying connected, listening and following each day. It's really hard when I can almost taste all the good things God has for us and see our future potential beginning to bud. Waiting on the Lord can be very hard for us pioneers and apostles! But I recharge by being about God's business, God's way and sharing what he is revealing. Even during vacation, he speaks and leads me to write these when I am at home. He's also refreshing me as I clear my Donald's do list and not have to do my church jobs. He wanted to talk to all of us today about His future plans for us and each of you. So, here we go! What's He saying to you?
Part of all of this is realizing how God has been leading us each step of the way and drawing you along to His best plans. Think about the past few years as we followed God into all becoming part of His Good News Delivery Co and stepping into our custom made parts. Then we worked on Become Me in '23 with words we focused on to work on our potential. And He has begun to add to our fellowship as we step into our potential and connect to neighbors. PTL! We are currently in the Become More in '24 Challenge that God has led us to work on being about the more of Him and less of me approach to earnestly growing into the greater things He has for us. He has called us to live and love like Jesus and connect to neighbors and make disciples. That is enacting the Great Commandments and Great Commission as we work at doing it His way and becoming more like Jesus.  How can we help each other with these? God has some amazing things for us to discover and work on as He answers our prayers to grow into a dynamic movement and disciple making hub. Are you getting any clues what He has planned or some things for you to work on and plan to help realize all of this? Please share them with us and let us commit to try some new things. If you haven't read the Bishop's address yet, please do (it was in yesterday's blog) and see how God is leading our denomination and how that is beginning to be contextualized through our Body. Maybe even hear from God some ideas He has for you and us to begin working on. More of Him and less of me! In this life, Christ is all that matters! Turn off the noise in and around you and recharge in Christ as you move towards your potential and help us to reach ours. God is always up to something new to connect to the current generations and He wants to use us as His vessels. Keep focused on Him and determined to follow well. I'm earnestly praying into that, for you and for His Kingdom to come, will be done and our fullest potential to be realized. Pray and plan and plan to go live and love like Jesus with me as we change the world with God's help.
Below are our devotionals for today. Can you see how they thread through all of this? I keep asking God to come speak, lead and write these blogs as He wants to prepare us to follow to His best. I often feel like I keep repeating the same things. BUT GOD! It's He that keeps revealing and leading us to work on these before He leads us to the next things. How are you doing with seeking and following? How can we help each other? Keep praying into that, donning His armor and surrendering to His will! He must have some great things for you and us to still work on with these things or He would have led us to something else. We are His masterpieces, gifted and empowered to go do the things He planned for us from long ago (Eph. 2:10). PTL! We are filled with His Light to go light up the darkness! Pursue Him, follow His peace and come change the world with me! Amen!
 Let us not forget those who gave their all for our freedoms! Let us honor their memories by using our freedoms, while we still have them, to lead the world to Christ starting with our neighbors. Everything changed when Jesus showed up. Is He changing things as He shows up in you, through you? It can! Let us choose to live for Christ today! Amen!
UR: Full Potential

The God of all grace, the one who called you into his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will himself restore, empower, strengthen, and establish you. - 1 Peter 5:10 (CEB)

Five years ago, I started a business buying run-down houses, repairing them, and reselling or “flipping” them. Many of these homes are in terrible shape — deteriorating and falling apart. Most of them have severe water damage, resulting in harmful black mold growing inside them. The water damage is most often caused by holes in the roof or cracks in the foundation. When choosing a property to flip, however, my business partner and I look past the damage to see the home’s potential.

Similarly, God sees the potential in us. When we are broken down, God builds us back up so we can shine. Just as a strong roof protects a home, God guides and protects us in all the stormy times we may face. Reading and learning from the Bible helps to strengthen our foundation as Christians. As our faith and knowledge grow, we are transformed, allowing us to live up to the full potential God sees in us.

Loving Father, help us remember that no matter how damaged we are, you can restore us. Thank you for guiding and helping us to achieve the full potential you see in us. Amen.
Inline image
Inline image

Tell Them What God Did

We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors . . . . We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:20

READ 2 Corinthians 5:12-21

My college friend Bill Tobias has served as a missionary on a Pacific island for many years. He tells the story about a young man who left his hometown to seek his fortune. But a friend took him to church where he heard the good news Jesus offers, and he trusted Christ as his Savior.

The young man wanted to take the gospel to his people who were “steeped in sorcery,” so he looked for a missionary to reach them. But the missionary told him to simply “go tell them what God did for you” (see Mark 5:19). And that’s what he did. Several people in his hometown received Jesus, but the biggest breakthrough came when the town’s witch doctor realized that Christ was “the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6). After he put his faith in Jesus, he told the whole town about Him. Within four years, the witness of one young man had led to the establishment of seven churches in the region.

In 2 Corinthians, Paul sets forth a clear plan for introducing the gospel to those who don’t yet know Christ—and it aligns with what that missionary told the young believer in Jesus. We are to be “Christ’s ambassadors”—His representatives “as though God were making his appeal through us” (5:20). Every believer has a unique story to tell of how Jesus made them “a new creation . . . who reconciled” them to God (vv. 17-18 nasb). Let’s tell others what He’s done for us.

By Dave Branon


What does salvation in Jesus mean to you? How can you be better prepared to share your story with others?

Dear God, please help me share my faith story with others.


Paul’s conversion on the road to Damascus is described in Acts 9. One of the ways the apostle talks about his conversion is that he once regarded Christ “from a worldly point of view” (2 Corinthians 5:16). This would include the Messiah offering salvation to the gentiles; coming as a servant, not a king; and dying a criminal’s death at the hand of religious leaders. Viewing Christ from a worldly perspective still happens today when He’s viewed as merely a good man or moral teacher but not as Savior and God Himself.

J.R. Hudberg
Harvest Blogs:

May 25 - The Flag of Christ

When we are confronted by temptations, we have the ability to pray directly against the Enemy’s onslaught. We often call these “Spiritual Warfare” prayers. 
Imagine a high cliff. On the top of the cliff is a plateau that represents the ground of our lives. It is subdivided into sections. One plot is our mental life, another our emotional life. One section of that land represents our financial life; another our relationships and on and on. Every area of our life is represented.
Before we came to faith in Christ, Satan’s flag was flying over that ground. We don’t like to think about it, but Paul describes our lives B.C. (before Christ) in stark terms.

And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. (Ephesians 2:1-3)
When we came to Christ, we were transferred from “the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of God’s dear Son.” We surrendered our life to Christ and gave Him the title deed. The flag of Christ now flies over the land of our lives and Satan’s ultimate rule is forever broken. We no longer belong to him.
But the Enemy does not give up easily. He comes crawling up the side of the cliff, peers over into our life and says, “I want to take back some of this land so this believer will not be a strong witness for Christ. I know I can’t own him anymore, but I’m going to tempt him to give up some ground to me so his life will not be a testimony to Christ.” He begins his subtle deceptions and temptations. He tempts us to look to our possessions to give us life, or to fall into moral sin, or to be proud, or angry, or prayerless. If we are not wise, we take his bait and relinquish areas to his control.
Heavenly Father, please help me to remember to put on Your spiritual armor and to clothe myself with Christ Jesus daily. I want to be continually aware of the battle raging around me so that I do not fall prey to Satan’s schemes against me. Help me to stay awake and alert and ready to do battle at a moment’s notice when temptation comes my way. I want the flag of Jesus to fly over every minute of my life!
---Adapted from Simply Prayer by Bill Elliff. This book is available at

Prayer Points

  • Give praise to God as the Comforter, who feels deeply for those who have been mistreated and abandoned (Isa. 49:13).
  • Thank him for calling many believers into compassionate ministries for the sake of those who are suffering.
  • Confess those times when you may have withheld comfort from others who needed it.
  • Commit yourself to receiving God’s encouragement and grace each morning and allowing that to flow through you to others.
  • Ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his love, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God (Eph. 3:19).
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.

Connection (Devotions for Everyday Life) © 2024 is a free devotional published daily by Harvest Prayer Ministries. Subscribe here.

Posted by: AT 09:52 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

email usour facebook page