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Friday, June 14 2024

Good Morning House of Prayer for the Nations, God's Custom Gathered Body! TGIF!

Thank God I'm Forgiven! PTL and amen! What are you thankful for today? How is our great gratitude flowing  through us into loving service and disciple making as our worshipful response. God is so good, kind and loving and He has custom made plans for you and for us that are motivated by our love, thanksgiving and worship. Just meditate on that a bit today and then check out the Harvest Prayer blogs speaking into the fact that God designed us to be a House of Prayer for the Nations as we respond with childlike faith to those responding with childlike faith to His love and call. We always need to be assessing if there is some house cleaning to be done in us and our Body and to be faithful to do so. One of my constant prayers is for St. Matts to become a House of Payer and God is beginning to send in the nations to pray and for childlike faith. PTL!

Our bird feeder attracts all kinds of different birds as God takes care of them through our provision. But our feeders have become a House of Feeding for the Species, just like we are becoming a HOP for the Nations. We have many squirrels and chipmunks, racoons. opossum, deer and now ducks! (yes Mr. and Mrs. Mallard have been ground feeding some grain and God provides through us). We, as God's Body, are connecting to all kinds of new people as God uses us to feed, serve, help, pray and encourage. PTL and keep praying into our growth as His vessels and for connections to new people He is sending and even some new connection points. And pray to be His vessel, encourager, for childlike faith and to teach and use you to pray. He is on the move!

Our devotionals (below) really spoke to my heart this morning. prayerfully meditate on them, journal what God is saying and process with some friends. A friend from races (non-believer drug addict) is going through all kind of health issues and reaching out for advice. Is God using this hard thing to open his heart? I have asked God to use me and guide me. Maybe God is using something from your past, or wanting to, to encourage another, pray with them and help them find our Peace, Joy and Hope? Our Daily Bread and Upper Room speak into this and God's sufficiency to help us and carry us through when we are in those very hard dark valleys. Charles Stanley speaks into this and our obedience and surrender no matter what we are facing. And The Word for You Today is teaching some more on prayer as we continue to work on becoming the people we are created to be, doing what we are created to do and becoming a House of Prayer. How can I pray for or help you? How might God want to use you? Keep praying, processing, dying to self and following Jesus and His examples. He is worthy of all praise, glory, honor and our faithful obedience. Amen!

Have a great weekend and live and love more like Jesus!

   Harvest Blogs:

June 14 - Heavenly Inspection

Jesus did such an inspection as He came into the holy city, Jerusalem.

Jesus entered Jerusalem and came into the temple; and after looking around He left for Bethany with the twelve, since it was already late. (Mark 11:11)

Don’t miss the seemingly random bit of travelogue: "after looking around." The Wuest Expanded translation says it like this: "After giving everything a comprehensive inspection.”

Jesus never did anything randomly. What was He inspecting? The answer becomes clear the next day:

Then they came to Jerusalem. And He entered the temple and began to drive out those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves; and He would not permit anyone to carry merchandise through the temple. And He began to teach and say to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations?’ But you have made it a robber’s den." (Mark 11:15-18) 

It was His house! Jesus was making an inspection to see what was happening in the very home He had designed. When He reported to His Father what was happening, and received instructions from the Architect and Builder of the temple, He came back the next day and cleaned house.

He still inspects His house. Look at Revelation, Chapters 3-4, and you will see Jesus, after his ascension, returning to the seven churches and telling them what to do to clean up the church. He has the authority to do so and we should be grateful for His intense interest.

We should be aware that He is looking at our churches all the time. It is His body. Just as we examine our body if there is a problem, so does He.

What does He find as He "looks around at everything" in our churches? Vain worship? Holy, sacred things being used for selfish, secular purposes? His mission being ignored? His presence not sought?

And, most importantly, is our church missing its essential task—to be a house of prayer for all nations? Is prayer foundational to all we do, or relegated to a small closet for the few who are interested? Does He find us doing, with what is His, what He desires?

It’s time to ruthlessly and relentlessly clean house. It is past time to make His house a house of prayer.

Creator God, You made Your church to be a house of prayer for all nations, but we have largely made it a den of thieves. We have been robbing You of Your glory and making church about us instead of about You. Make us more aware of Your heart for our purpose – to be the Bride of Jesus Christ, Your Only Son! Help us to clean up our act and make ourselves ready so that when You return for us, we are clean and pure and spotless!

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

Prayer Points

  • Praise God for his love for children who often are full of insight (Mk.10:14-16).
  • Thank God that he teaches you to have a childlike faith (Mt.11:25).
  • Confess how often you make things so complicated and act so independently of him.
  • Commit yourself to giving out the simple gospel message, “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31).
  • Ask God to help you recognize every opportunity to have a childlike faith, and not to be childish (Mt. 18:4).
  • Pray that Christians all over the world may “tell the good news” in a childlike way and be ready to welcome all who respond as little children, eager to know more.
Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend. This book is available at prayershop.org. 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.

ODB:

Dilemmas and Deeper Faith

Daughter, your faith has healed you. Mark 5:34

READ Mark 5:21-34

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During a Saturday morning Bible study, a father was perplexed because his beloved, wayward daughter had returned to the city, but he was uncomfortable with her in his home because of her behavior. Another attendee was not well in her body because the physical effects of long-term disease and aging had taken their toll. Numerous visits to numerous doctors had yielded minimal progress. She was discouraged. By divine design, Mark chapter 5 was the Bible passage they studied that day. And when the study was over, hope and joy were palpable.

In Mark 5:23, Jairus, a father with a sick child, exclaimed, “My little daughter is dying.” On His way to visit the girl, Jesus healed an unnamed woman of her long-term health issue, saying, “Daughter, your faith has healed you” (v. 34). Jairus and the woman, compelled by faith in Jesus, sought Him out and they weren’t disappointed. But in both cases, prior to meeting Jesus, things had progressed from “bad to worse” before getting better.

Life’s dilemmas don’t discriminate. Regardless of gender or age, race or class, we all face situations that perplex us and send us searching for answers. Rather than allowing challenges to keep us from Jesus, let’s strive to have them stir us to deeper faith in the One who feels it when we touch Him (v. 30) and who can make us well.

By Arthur Jackson

REFLECT & PRAY

What current situation compels you to seek Jesus? What’s your heartfelt prayer today?

Dear Jesus, You know each painful situation in my life. Please make me strong in faith even when things go from bad to worse.

Uncover how we can work through life’s pain.

Lecture - Our Daily Bread University

SCRIPTURE INSIGHT

The four gospels include multiple miracles Jesus performed during His earthly ministry. Mark is often called the “action gospel” because of its focus on Christ’s deeds. Mark contains more miracles proportionately than the other gospel accounts. Mark 5 shows Jesus’ authority over demons (vv. 1-20), death (vv. 21-24, 35-43), and disease (vv. 25-34). His miracles also revealed His authority over nature and disabilities. John wrote, “Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written” (John 21:25).

Alyson Kieda

UR: Sufficient

[The Lord] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. - 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

After my sister’s surgery for a brain tumor, I stayed with her in the intensive care unit (ICU). She was suffering greatly, and I prayed for God to grant her relief and to provide me with strength to console and support her. I began to read from a copy of The Upper Room. The selected scripture for one meditation was 2 Corinthians 12:9. From then on, that verse became my refrain, my strength.

I looked up when I heard my sister speak, though incoherently; it seemed obvious she was not improving. When the ICU visiting hours were over, my husband picked me up so we could take care of an errand while my other sister and my mother remained in the waiting area. Before long, I received a call from my sister, who told me to return to the hospital because our mother had become distraught; my sister and I then took over the vigil. A bit later, the doctors operated again, but this time my sister did not survive.

Throughout this ordeal God remained steadfast. God’s strength became mine. It allowed me, in turn, to console, support, and encourage my family in this ultimate moment of grief. Thanks be to God!

TODAY'S PRAYER

Your power is made perfect in our weakness, O God. In our weakness we are made strong by your grace. To you, eternal God, be all glory. Amen.CS:

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TWFYT

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St. Matthew's EC Church

5th & Ridge Streets
P.O. Box 433
Emmaus, PA 18049
Telephone 610.965.5570
Email: stmattsecemmaus@gmail.com

ABOUT US

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 http://www.eccenter.com/

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