Thursday, May 10, 2018

Having a Kingdom Perspective

Read: Matthew 13:24-52, Matthew 20:1-16; Matthew 22:1-14, Matthew 25:1-13, Hebrews 12:28, Matthew 7:21,  Matthew 6:10, Luke 11:2-4, Luke 12:29-32,  Colossians 3:1-4  

Of all the topics in the Word of God that Jesus taught about, He had more to say about the topic of The Kingdom than pretty much any other topic. If it was as important to Him to teach so often about it then it ought to be important to us as well! 

The Kingdom is mentioned and taught about many times throughout the Gospels as well as other parts of the New Testament. 

The kingdom of God is synonymous with the kingdom of heaven and Jesus taught that we should have a Kingdom perspective and keep The Kingdom in mind in all we do.

There is so much one could teach about The Kingdom that one post can only scratch the surface on such a big topic

So what is The Kingdom and What is a kingdom perspective and How do you and I keep a kingdom perspective? 

The aim of this communication is to briefly touch on these topics in order to wet your appetite for your further study about this.

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

5 Tips From God's Word for Seeking Wisdom and Direction

It may come as a surprise to you, but, you and I do NOT have all the answers and by design, we need help along the way.

From the time we’re born until we depart, we need help from God and others in one form or another as we'll constantly experience situations, tasks, and circumstances where we'll need God’s wisdom and direction. We'll also need godly counsel from other's in the body of Christ.

It's a lot like going on a road trip and unless you’re a rare individual that basically has a GPS embedded in their brain…you need at least some pre-trip planning. (OK, maybe I read and watch too much SciFi sometimes) :-) Not only what supplies to bring but also a general understanding of what the directions are and what direction you're heading.

I remember the family road trips I went on when I was young, yes, I was young at one point in my life, and we used these things called MAPS… :-) They were paper and folded out so you could see the area you’d be traveling to and through including the roadways you needed. My family and I traveled all over the place with via maps We even went on trips to places like Yellowstone National Park and back as well as many other places.  

I still keep current road maps in my glove box as sometimes technology doesn't work and you still need directions! 

Now-a-days we have GPS technology built into our phones and other devices, but, a wise person stops and considers the directions and asks for directions as needed no matter if they use maps or GPS technology. Even using a GPS you have to look at the route so you understand enough about the route especially for a place you've never been before. 

Life is just like this as we need to continually seek wisdom and direction which in the life of a follower of Christ, always begins and ends with seeking God and His Word. 

With this in mind, I wanted to share the following encouragement and starting point for your further study as you continue to seek God's wisdom and direction.


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

8 Tips For Discovering The Will of God.

In life you may seek God's will about many things, such as: what career path you should take, what apprenticeship you should pursue, what college or trade school you should attend, where you should work, whether or not He wants you to be and stay single or does He want you to get married someday?

Speaking from experience, there will be times in your life that you will seek God’s Will more often than other times.

I've heard people say at times that, "God's will is a mystery, but, His will isn’t as mysterious as we think it is because sometimes it takes time to for Him to reveal it and for us to understand it so we think it’s a mystery.

In fact, read the following passages for examples of how He makes His Will for you and I very clear: Romans 12:1-2, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, Ephesians 6:5-8.

Take Romans 12:1-2 for instance,  to know God’s Will, you need to reject conforming to this world and instead, allow God to transform you by His Spirit. In many passages like this, He clearly lays out His will for you and I. As you abide in His Word, you will see His revealed will because it’s very clear! 

God's Will is knowable, (He wants you to know His will for you), and its clear, (He will make it clear).

My aim in this communication is to share a glimpse of what the Bible says about His Will as well as practical tips and tools regarding about how you can figure out what His will is. 

Here are 8 Biblical and practical tips that will be of help as you seek His will:

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

The Gifts That Are OK To Re-gift

Read: Ephesians 2:10, 1 Peter 4:10, Romans 12:6–8; 1 Corinthians 12:4–11; and 1 Corinthians 12:28. 

God created you specifically for the good works that He's prepared for you. He's uniquely given you the spiritual gifts you need, as well as the ability and capacity to grow in skills, talents and abilities to fulfill exactly what He's called and created you to do!

He's blessed you with these things so you can in turn serve Him with all that is within you and give those gifts back in service to Him. 

Now, there's an important distinction between Spiritual Gifts and talents, skills, and abilities as follows. 

Sunday, April 01, 2018

He Is Risen!! Resurrection Sunday 2018!

HE IS RISEN! HE IS RISEN INDEED!

Dear Friend in Christ,

I wanted to wish you a wonderful and peaceful Resurrection / Easter Sunday! 

He is the resurrection and the life! Read: John 11:25-26

May this Sunday be filled with joy as you celebrate and worship the risen savior Jesus Christ!

He is Risen!

With Love In Him,
Because of He Lives,

Randolph Koch

P.S. Here's a post sharing Historical Evidence For The Resurrection of Jesus: http://www.ashepherdsheart.org/2009/04/historical-evidence-for-resurrection.html

Friday, March 30, 2018

Passion Week Reflections - 2018

Dear Friend,

I typically post a communication once a week via www.ashepherdsheart.org and and if you follow A Shepherd's Heart on Social Media, you already know that I post a brief thought pretty much everyday.

Here are five reflections for this passion week. 

Four of these have been shared via my Instagram, Facebook, and other other Social Media Platforms. However, since you have visited the web site or are subscribed to our free e-Mail communications, you are receiving day five (Friday) of the reflections first...before it's posted anywhere else! 

I pray that these brief Passion Week Reflections will encourage and challenge you in your faith as you prepare you heart, mind, and soul for your Good Friday remembrance and then your Resurrection Celebration! 

Because He Lives,
Your Brother and Servant,

Randolph Koch

____________________________________________
Friday: 
Read: Isaiah 53:5

It's Good Friday and it's a day of deep contemplative reflection as we remember what Jesus endured for us. 

As Isaiah reminds us...

He was pierced for our transgressions. 

He was crushed for our iniquities.

He died for all of our sins past, present, and future!

All of this so we can have peace with God through His free gift of salvation, because, by His wounds we are healed!

If you've received His free gift of salvation, you are no longer spiritually separated from God because of your sin. 

You are no longer spiritually corrupt, broken, and bankrupt because through His sacrifice - you are healed! 

He willingly laid-down His life so you can have life in Him. 

No matter how our bodies age and feel like they're literally or figuratively falling apart, we should also look forward to the day when we will experience the joy of our salvation and ultimate healing when we pass from this life and into His presence in heaven!

Until then, may you serve Him will all that is within you and today, Good Friday, and forever more may you remember His sacrifice for you. 

  • May you remember what He endured so you can have life!


____________________________________________
Thursday: 
Read: Matthew 20:28 and Matthew 25:35-40

It's Thursday, the Thursday before Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday and again, I'm moved by the reality of what Jesus came to do and has done for mankind! 

Matthew 20:28 summarizes for us the mission He came to fulfill...He came to serve and give His life as the ransom payment for you and I! 

He was payment for the wages of sin which is death by giving His life for YOU! Why? So that you might have life in Him if you receive His free gift of salvation!

I pray that these truths from God's Word blow you away and sink deeply into your hear, mind, and soul!

Again, What a Savior Jesus Is! He came to serve and not be serve! 

May we seek to be like Him as we seek to serve Him and others! 
Read Matthew 20:28 and Matthew 25:35-40 and ask yourself:
What can I do to sacrificially serve Him and others?
What can I do to make His name great proclaiming Him to the world?
What can I do to shine His light more in all we do? 
What do I need to change in order to live my life more for Him in service to Him and others?

____________________________________________

Wednesday:
Read: John 3:16-17

John 3:16 - It's more than just a sign at a sporting event, more than some mere platitude to be shared as some might think, this passage is the whole truth of The Gospel regarding why God The Father sent His Son.

Let's break it down like this....

God Loved you and I so much that He knew from eternity past that man would fall and need a way of salvation...through Jesus!

Through Jesus... 

He provided a way to fix that was broken!

He provide bridge to fix the separation between God and Man!

He provided The Shepherd Who would find those who are lost but yet can be found in Him!

He provided the cure for your spiritual blindness! 

He provided The Pathway that does not lead to destruction!

He provided The Way to complete the transaction through Jesus whose sacrifice served as payment for the wages of sin which is death.

Jesus is The Way, The Truth, and The Life! 

God did this for you and is or has drawn you to Himself so if you receive His free gift of salvation, you will have forgiveness and eternal life with Him! Insert your name where it says "World" and I pray you get the profound truths of this passage all the more! 

I pray that you have received His free gift and that as you prepare your heart and mind for this weekend's celebration, that you will celebrate and worship Him in spirit and truth this Resurrection Sunday! 
____________________________________________
Tuesday: 
Read: Isaiah 25:8

I love the language of this passage in Isaiah. It's powerful and beautiful in it's truth and it points to Jesus!

Jesus is The One Who swallowed up death forever for those who accept His free gift. 

Jesus also cares about you and I and will wipe every tear away now as He ministers to and comforts us and He's prepared a way to Heaven where there will no longer be ANY tears!

For those who've received His free gift of salvation, He has also removed our sin / reproach as He died on the cross for our sins!

What a Savior Jesus is! Praise His mighty name! 

He is The Reason and The One we celebrate this Easter/Resurrection time and every day!

I pray again, as we prepare our hearts, minds, and plans, may we stay in awe and remember all He did so that we might have life in Him and keep Him in the center of all we do! 
____________________________________________
Monday:

Read: Romans 6:23
As we walk day-by-day this week through what we refer to as Passion Week or Holy Week, leading up to Resurrection Sunday, may be never forget why Jesus came in the first place!

May we prepare ourselves as we look to remember Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday! May we never grow complacent in remembering all He did as a free gift to those who would believe and receive it because of the wages of Sin is death and He came to bring life!

As Romans 6:23 reminds us, the wages of sin is death and that's what we deserved.
However, the free gift of God through Jesus' sacrifice is forgiveness and eternal life!

I pray that if you haven't already, that you will receive His free gift of salvation and then you can really celebrate this Resurrection Sunday with the joy of personally knowing The One Who gave His life for you! 

I'll be walking through one scripture a day this week to provide an encouraging reminder for us about His sacrifice and victory! Stay tuned for more.  
____________________________________________
For days 6 and 7, Please visit A Shepherd's Heart on Instagram or Facebook.



Friday, March 23, 2018

It's "Time To Make The Donuts."

Read: Genesis 2:15, James 2:14-18, Ephesians 2:10, Colossians 1:9-10, Matthew 5:16, 1 Timothy 6:17-18, Titus 2:6-8, Titus 3:14, and Galatians 6:9 

From the very beginning, God created mankind with a specific purpose and work to do just like we see in Genesis 2:15.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

9 Keys to Walking In Christ

If you're in Christ, then you need to walk out your faith day-by-day. Similar to "hitting the gym" to exercise, you have to exercise your faith in order to walk and grow in Christ.

It's a choice to daily do the right things in pursuing God, His Word, and living out your faith through a Word and Spirit filled and led life! 

So, how do you walk in Christ exactly? Good question! 

God's Word outlines many things that we should and need to be doing to successfully walk in Christ and the following is a list of 9 of the Keys to Walking in Christ. 

Each key includes scripture and practical insight for your further personal study.

Tuesday, March 06, 2018

The 3 Part Test of a Prophet

Read: Deuteronomy 18:20-22, 1 Corinthians 14, Ezekiel 13:9, Matthew 24:24, 2 Timothy 4:3-4, Acts 20:28-30, 1 John 4:1-6, Matthew 7:15-20, 1 Peter 5:8, Hebrews 13:9

It's been my observation that there are many gifts such as the gift of prophecy and speaking in tongues that aren't handled or expressed Biblically today and we need to be careful to take in any teaching that doesn't align with God's Word. 

It's seems that specifically with the gift of prophecy, that it is often only thought by some to be the foretelling of future events but it is also and more often than the previous - it is the proclamation of God's truth from His Word. 

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The Bible is Essential Part 3 - Scripture Memorization and Tips.

Read: Psalm 119:9-16

In the last communication we took a look at studying God's Word, specifically Bible Study methods  as an important part of making God's Word a priority. 

In this communication we're shifting our focus to the importance of scripture memorization in the life of a follower of Christ. 


Memorization is vital:

Friday, February 16, 2018

The Bible is Essential Part 2 - 5 Bible Study Methods

Read:  2 Timothy 2:15, Psalm 1:2, 2 Thessalonians 3:1, Psalm 119:16, Psalm 119:33–35, John 14:21 

In my last communication, we touched on how vital studying and abiding in God's Word is and I pray as a result, we've taken time to evaluate our priorities including our time with Him and have purposed to set time aside to make God's Word more of a priority. 

In this communication I am going to do a brief "fly over" description of 5 of the many common Bible study methods to give you a some information to check out and try out.  


As followers of Christ, we're to continually learn and grow in our relationship with Christ and this includes growing in wisdom and knowledge through regular intentional study of God's Word. God's Word is an should be a delight to us heart, mind, and soul!

Friday, February 09, 2018

The Bible is Essential Part 1 - Studying and Abiding in God's Word

Read: Psalm 119:105, John 8:31-32, Deuteronomy 8:3 , John 15:1-17,  1 John 2:1-6, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Hebrews 4:12

The more we walk with Christ the more we should have a desire to know Him, The Holy Spirit and His Word more. 

Unfortunately, I continue to see the trends and statistics that state that there are a large amount of people who identify as Christians, those who even attend a Church somewhat regularly, who rarely pick up the Word of God to read and study it for themselves. (See several links to statistic examples below this communication)

They often can't even name basic things like the 4 Gospels or other very rudimentary things about The Scriptures...things that the average "Sunday School" aged child could answer...not that many churches even have Sunday School anymore for kids or adults anymore. It's as if some give an intellectual nod to the Bible but they don't really own their faith.  

They don't honor God's Word nor give it the proper place in their lives that they should.