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St. Matthew's EC Church
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Pastor's Blog
Wednesday, November 08 2023

Good Morning Image Bearing Co-Laborers! We are the image of Christ and He lives in us and helps us to allow Him to live and love through us as we worship, encourage, and serve together. Today we get the opportunity to join together to bless each other and people that come for bread and donuts from 10-11. Consider picking up a homebound member and bringing them along as we feast fellowship and love on others. We also get to gather for dinner, fellowship, study and fun at 6 for our Family Ministries/Chosen Huddles. Who ya bringing? There's always plenty of food and love to go around!

Today I found an old devotional from Dec. 2021 that I had stuffed in my Bible between John 14 and 15. Remember we are reading and answering those questions of John 14 and 15 this week. There will be a on them on Sunday. What's God saying to you as you sit at Jesus' feet and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you about the Way, the Truth, and the Life and our nourishing Vine? The old devo I found is from the Upper Room and titled "Fully Charged". It uses Psalm 62:1-2 encouragement, "Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him." They ask this probing question, "What will I do to recharge my spiritual batteries this week?" How would you answer that? Are you weary and heavy laden? Are you striving in your own strength? Are you feeling hopeless, lost depressed? This verse reminds us that sometimes we have to remind ourselves (sometimes we need others to remind us too), to find rest and hope in God--to choose peace and joy and rest and hope in Him. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that Faith is truly a "Fantastic Adventure In Trusting Him"! And JOY comes as we put Jesus and Others ahead of Yourself. What are you focused on and from where does your help and hope come? Be still and know. Recharge!

Many of us are lacking connectedness to God and others and missing out on the healing restoring that comes for relationships and fellowship with God and each other. We do have several opportunities for you to join with fellow members and friends to refresh, encourage, and grow in joy. Isolation leads to depression and hopelessness. All the noise around us is clambering to draw us to anxiety, fear and doubt and exhaustion. Turn off the noise and connect to God and others! Work on your relationship with God and each other and even some you don't know yet. Come hang out, fellowship, learn, use your gifts, be refreshed and encouraged and experience God's blessings together! he loves us and you very deeply. He knows that we grow into our healthiest as we hang out with Him and each other. Come as you are and join one of our fellowship opportunities and bring someone along! AND did I mention there's donuts today?

ODB (below) (There's that John 10 passage again that God keeps bringing up! What do you hear as he keeps doing that?) It discusses our Good Shepherd and how His sheep hear His voice and follow. Who are you listening to and following? Some false teacher, leader, thief or our Good Shepherd? Whose voice are you most familiar with and trusting to follow? Please pray into the possibility of some new small group opportunities after the New Year. I believe it is imperative and part of God's healthy rhythms for us to gather together to tune into Him, fellowship and process together. Check out TWFYT (below) discussing connectedness and the importance of deep relationships with God and others where you can openly share what is going on in your life and bless and help each other to move towards God's best. We need each other and we need to support these opportunities! Who are you growing in relationship with? I love how our Tues Zoom Huddle is growing at this connectedness to God and each other and our Chosen gathering too. How might God want you to join in this kind of thing?  Yesterday we discussed becoming all that we can be. We were not created to be an army of one! Who are you traveling through this becoming journey with? 

All right gotta run! Geez up at 230 and still running late. hope God speaks to you like He did to me this morning. I have a 6:00 huddle to join with others sharing, holding accountable, seeking God together and praying. God loves to prepare us for the day and week with others sitting at his feet together. Thank God for that and ask who he wants you to join with in your and their becoming journey! And do something about it! be still and know with some friends today! God loves you and has great plans for you. rejoice and journey together well! 


Knowing the Shepherd’s Voice

His sheep follow him because they know his voice. John 10:4

READ John 10:1–10


When I was a boy living on a ranch in Tennessee, I spent glorious afternoons roaming with my best friend. We’d hike into the woods, ride ponies, visit the rodeo arena, and venture into the barn to watch the cowboys work the horses. But whenever I heard my dad’s whistle—that clear sound slicing through the wind and all the other clatter—I’d immediately drop whatever I was doing and head home. The signal was unmistakable, and I knew I was being called by my father. Decades later, I’d still recognize that whistle.

Jesus told His disciples that He was the Shepherd, and His followers were the sheep. “The sheep listen to [the shepherd’s] voice,” He said. “He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out” (John 10:3). In a time when numerous leaders and teachers sought to confuse Christ’s disciples by asserting their authority, He declared that His loving voice could still be heard clearly, more distinctly than all the others. “His sheep follow [the shepherd], because they know his voice” (v. 4).

May we be careful as we listen for Jesus’ voice and avoid foolishly dismissing it, for the fundamental truth remains: The Shepherd speaks clearly, and His sheep hear His voice. Perhaps through a verse of Scripture, the words of a believing friend, or the nudge of the Spirit—Jesus speaks, and we do hear.

By Winn Collier


How do you think you’ve complicated hearing God’s voice? What’s the Shepherd saying to you today?

Dear God, I need to be reminded that You’re speaking, and that I do hear You. Help me pay attention. Help me to listen and respond.


Much of Jesus’ teaching was down to earth and practical, so it’s understandable why people were enthralled with it. We see this in John 10 when Christ speaks of shepherding and sheep, which were commonly understood in the life of the ancient Israelites. It also echoed back to Israel’s past relationship with God. In the Old Testament, Psalm 23:1 launches the imagery of God as Israel’s shepherd. That theme is revisited in Jeremiah 23:1–8; Ezekiel 34; and Zechariah 10:2–12. Jesus also pursued the shepherd/sheep motif in Luke 15 in His three parables about lost things (a sheep, a coin, and a son).

Bill Crowder


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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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