Friday, December 05, 2008

Lord, Give Me Your Eyes!


As we're at the beginning of this Christmas Season I've been drawn to the fact once again that there are a lot of hurting people in this world and there is an awesome opportunity for them to experience real peace this Christmas.

God can and will use us this Christmas time to minister to all those in and out of relationship with Jesus.

May we be beacons shining His light and love for the world around us, which by the way, is His world whether they reject Him or not.

May God give us His eyes to see the hurting and hopeless, and may He give us His eyes to see the needs even within the lives of other believers - which we often fail to see!

We can either cast judgment on or disregard them or we can reach out with the Hope that only they can find in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

This could simply start by providing a meal for someone in need or any number of things to help those in the community He's placed you in! Through that relationship you will then be able minister and love on them unconditional and plant seeds that will one day result in them coming to a relationship with Him. Take a look sometime at Matthew 25:34-40 regarding how God sees serving others! Or, check out Philippians 2:3 to see what God says about putting others before ourselves!

Here's a song that has recently come to mind in which the chorus is more like a prayer that God would give us His eyes. You can either play it in the below window or if it doesn't work you can use this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEfIcMqAzvs

Please note: in order to hear the audio without interruption, you may need to pause the music that plays on this blog by scrolling down the right navigation and finding the music player and clicking on pause.

Listen to the chorus' lyrics and may we make it our daily prayer that He would, "give us His eyes!" At a minimum, this will help you make this Christmas and going forward all the more special as you serve and put others first. This will also have an impact for eternity!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

RLK Ministries Update for November 2008

Hello,

The following is an update that I sent to friends of my ministry via e-mail.

Thought whoever stops by might be interested in an update regarding the many facets of my personal ministry.

Thanks,

rlk
*******************************************************************************************************

November 18, 2008


Dear Friends of RLK Ministries,

Greetings in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Hope this message finds you well!

It has been a while since I last communicated with you so I wanted to provide you with an update regarding many facets of the ministry.

First off, during this Thanksgiving time I wanted to express my deep gratitude for the privilege of serving the Lord and you! Since coming to know the Lord it's been an adventure and through the inception of this ministry in 1997, it's been continuation of an adventure, journey, and dream and I look forward to further opportunities to humbly serve and shepherd where He leads.

I know that it's a very tough economic time for everyone at this time and my family is right there with you! We can pray and lift each other up during this and every season of our lives and isn't it a true privilege to do so for His glory!

I always hesitate to share areas of prayer and financial need especially during this season of turmoil however just like any ministry large or small there are areas of need that I'd appreciate your prayer covering for!

With this in mind here are a few areas of update I wanted to share with you:

The Devotional Starters:

I'd appreciate your prayers, I've taken a hiatus from writing over the last year but I've sensed that it's time pick up "the pen" again and restart the Devotional Starters. Pray that I can lock time out each month to write at least once a month or more.

I'm also looking at possibly changing them a bit - seeking to be even more concise with what I'm lead to write through studying and sharing His Word. I'll have a few devotions to write and then I'll circle back and finally complete the CHARACTER series some of you remember I had started up but did not completed.

Computer Update:

One of the resource areas we've struggled with besides finances is the lack of an adequate laptop PC. It's hard to maintain the web site, write, or simply manage the ministry without one.

I'm happy to share that I've been blessed with the use of a newer pretty well equipped Laptop PC with a 17 inch screen for a few months for my ministry and personal activities. This is thanks to a friend from church who doesn't need it for a few months and offered me the use of it. Pray that by February, (which is when I'll have to return the laptop) that God will help us secure a new one of like kind.

Now that I have the PC as of a little over a week ago, I am in need of specific software and wanted to let all my ministry friends know of the needs in case this is something you might have and would be willing to give:

Here's what I need in order of importance with insight to how it will be utilized:

1. MS Office 2000 or newer with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, FrontPage and Publisher (Used is fine as long as it comes with a license of course) I'm also considering an evaluation of the free open source suite called Open Office. This may work out and if it does it will provide a MS Office compatible alternative for Word, Excel and PowerPoint. This will not replace a need for FrontPage or Publisher as Open Office doesn't come with an alternative. I'll keep you posted. I'll have use of the software, (MS Office 2007) for a few months which is on this PC but after the PC is returned, I'll need to acquire another licensed copy.

Use: This software would be used for writing, document creation, presentation creation, cost tracking, web site maintenance and more.

2. Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 Ultimate (For graphics projects) http://www.corel.com/servlet/Satellite/us/en/Product/1155872554948#versionTabview=tab1&tabview=tab0

Use: This would be used for graphic projects such as editing photos for scripture wallpaper creation, web elements, editing graphics for presentations and more.

3. Swishmax http://www.swishzone.com

Use: This is a Flash like authoring tool that would be used for web and other project enhancements such as online evangelism tools as well as encouragement tools.


Web Site:

I'm in the process of re-vamping the ministry web site, if you know any web designers that have any dynamic FrontPage compatible templates let me know as the site requires a much needed refresh soon. With the site revamp we'll also look to add further tools and resources as well as links to useful information.

Prayers:

Besides prayers for the above, I would appreciate your prayers as God is helping me / having me re-evaluate and re-focus what He wants us to do in helping meeting the spiritual and physical needs in people's lives. I'm sure I'll have more to share in the months to come as this becomes even clearer.

Part of this I sense will definitely bring an even greater focus on meeting physical needs, (I.E. providing Thanksgiving meals as well as other practical ongoing assistance) in addition to the spiritual needs in striving to be the hands and feet of Jesus and enabling others to do the same.

Secondly, I'm having to find some type of part-time work to help supplement my day job as well as put other things in place to better take care of the family God has blessed me with. Pray that I can find something that will be flexible and provide the right income at the right time. Possibly even something ministry focused through this ministry or other related ministry activities. I may also begin offering wedding and vow renewal services in the future.

Please Note: To be clear I wanted to mention that no income has ever been drawn from any of the funds given to this ministry over the years as the funds always go to help others or provide for specific ministry supplies/resources.

Thank you for your prayers for all of the resources and other items shared in this update!

The Prayer Chain:

Wanted to remind you that we still have a prayer chain! It's underutilized and I'd love to see it grow in those who subscribe to pray for the needs as well as those who share prayer requests. For the sake of administration and clarity, the only thing I ask is that when sending a request that the prayer request is as clear and concise as possible so the prayer need is heard and can be prayed over. The details can also be included but the prayer request(s) need to be clear as the main priority.

If you'd like to subscribe to be a part of the RLK Prayer Chain please send a blank mail to the following address: rlkprayerchain-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

If you have prayer needs, please send them to one of the two following addresses: rlkmin@msn.com or prayer@rlkministries.org.

Supporting RLK Ministries:

From time-to-time I'm asked how can someone support the RLK Ministries, besides prayer which is vital, here are a few ways to support financially.

1. Online Giving:

If you're lead to support RLK Ministries financially please go to: http://www.rlkministries.org/Support.htm and click on the PayPal Donate Button. Note: you do not need a PayPal account to use this service and All major Debit or Credit Cards are accepted. (This is also subject to a PayPal processing fee that is deducted for each donation in order to provide the service. This fee isn't applied to you rather to the funds that are donated)

OR:

2. Donation Deposit:

You can make a deposit at any Washington Mutual bank for RLK Ministries, just e-mail me if you would like to do so and I'll give you the account number.

If you have a specific area you want the donation to go towards - you can make note of that through either financial method.


We always appreciate your prayers and any financial support as we seek to help meet the growing spiritual and physical needs in the lives of others.

Thank you for your time! It's a privilege to serve the Lord and you! Please don't hesitate to contact me should you have any questions or need anything! Also, feel free to let me know how you're doing as I'd love to hear from you from time to time.

In closing, until we communicate next, may God bless you as you continue to seek Him and love Him with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength!

Your Brother and Servant,

Randolph Koch
RLK Ministries

Personal Blog: http://ashepherdsheart.blogspot.com
Web: www.rlkministries.org

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

An American Military Tribute - Veterans Day 2008



Dear Veterans,

On this Veterans Day words cannot express the gratitude I have for the sacrifices you have made for God and country!

I also recognize the great sacrifice your loved ones have made when you were gone, most likely often, when you were out protecting our country fighting for our freedom!

I also think of the numerous soldiers who have lost their lives in battle and the families that have been left behind to mourn their loss.

Simple words cannot truly express the gratitude I have for every military personnel past, present, and future!

Thank you for sacrifice! I pray that we never take you for granted!

The following is an American Military Tribute through a song named Unknown by David Harsh.

Please take a few moments to view and listen to this great tribute!

Note: You may need to pause the music/tunes on this blog by scrolling down the right hand side until you see the Tunes/Music Player and press pause so you can hear the introduction and music without interruption.

Sincerely,

Randolph Koch

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

3 Things a Son needs to hear from his Father


A few years ago I was blessed to participated in a class called The Quest for Authentic Manhood - which I highly recommend.

There were three things Robert Lewis suggests a son needs to hear from His Father. These three things as well as many more have stuck with me and I work to try and communicate these things to the sons God has blessed me with!

3 Things a Son needs to hear from his Father:

I Love You..
I am Proud of you.
You are Good at...

This list is just a starter list - but it is a great start! Furthermore if you look at the relationship of God the Father and God the Son in the New Testament, you'll see that God the Father expressed these same things to His Son Jesus, (God the Son) as suggested in the above list! (Check out the Gospels like the Gospel of Matthew for examples)

I share this list because it's important and in the context of the class the focus was on fathers and sons relationships and fathers doing significant things to bless their sons.

Now, I would also add that dads should express these things to their daughters as well and moms should also express these things to there daughters and sons.

The more parents who reinforce these things and affirm and build-up their children the better!

So, take this list and start implementing it now, keep adding to the list, and never forget these three!

My kids are still young and I've done this in writing and verbally but it's also important to mention that if your children are grown-up and off into adulthood, it's never too late to start blessing your children! Take time now to communicate to them in person and or in writing, (or both!) these things! You will bless them and whether they'd admit it or not, your sons, your children hunger for your love, support, and belief in them. If you can do this in person that would be best and following it up with a written note would be awesome!

In closing, I'd love to hear your stories about how you shared this with your children and their response. Please come back to this blog and leave a comment so you can bless others by your example and experience.

God Bless as you Seek Him!

rlk

Monday, October 13, 2008

Sharing the Word with the free RefTagger tool



From time to time I'm blessed to be a recipient of great information regarding new technology that has been created by brilliant minds.

I was introduced to one such tool in the past few days, through one of the pastor's blogs from my home church, which is a tool called RefTagger.

This is a free tool that you can added to your web site or blog that will essentially share the Word in a window for any scripture you've references.

For instance, when I type John 3:16 you should see a link that if you hover over it, you'll see the verse pop up in the version of my choice which is the NASB (New American Standard Bible). This is a great tool for sharing the Word as it delivers the Scripture right here and right now whereas I used to have to link each reference to another site such as BibleGateway.com. That is still an option but this would take you to another site in order to read the passage or reference. The other great option is that you have several major versions of the Bible to choose from so you can use your favorite version, if available, on your site or blog!

Going forward, when I share something with scripture this will be an added feature you can look for and benefit from.

Spread to the word about this tool to others who you think might want to add this tool to their site or blog.

Again, here's the link for more information: http://www.logos.com/reftagger

If you use it make sure to thank them and drop me a line when you can as I'd love to see how you utilize it yourself!

Blessings,

rlk

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Stock Market Down 777

During this time of great economic unrest I wanted to post a simple note of encouragement to you to remember WHO is in control. You and I need to be active in our finances and be sure that we are conservative in our saving, spending, and investments - especially right now.

In relation to this I also wanted to share something in response to a friend’s great question regarding the significance of the stock market losing 777 points yesterday in relations to the number 7 in prophecy, especially in relation to the prophecy about the break down of nations.

I thought you might have the same question or something similar so here are my brief thoughts on this.

Please note, I’m no expert on prophecy so this is again only my opinion but I hope that you’ll be encouraged in some way.


“You are correct, the number 7 is significant and is used many times especially with significance in The Book of Revelation.”

“In a nut shell: My opinion would be that on one hand, yes, A. it could be a prophesy coming to pass before us or it could be, B. God is reminding us that He’s in control and to keep our eyes on Him during these tumultuous times and at all times.”

“I lean more toward B. but will not discount A. either because God is God and I am not!”

“His economy is bigger than ours and on one hand, it’s no wonder our country, who no longer makes honoring God like our founding fathers did, a priority anymore, is having economic woes. Yet, we still know WHO’s in control.”

“Take courage, stand firm, and be/stay ready.”

Friend,

God is in control and rest assured that He will make a way through this and in fact He already has a solution in mind and has had one long before these recent events!

Congress is not going to solve the problems our economy has but we all will inevitably bear this burden but again, we are not alone. God most High knows what is going on and will make a way whether this country likes it or not.

Don't forget to pray and don't stop praying for the United States of America, especially during this time.

Don’t forget to get into the Word and study it for yourself.

Continue to actively pray on the Full Armor Of God each day.

Do not be afraid because He alone is with you always.

God Bless,

RLK

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Music Creativity RE: David Harsh

I've posted an entry or two in the past about a friend and gifted minister of music, David Harsh, and I've been looking for a few videos to share/showcase a glimpse of his gifting and creativity through guitar, vocals, etc.

As I've share before, David is a servant/ singer/songwriter/ musician. He does concerts, workshops, speaking, leads worship, and more! After checking out the following links for videos and other information, as well as the embedded video below, let me encourage you to share this information with your church or camp. He'd be a great servant to bring to your church / community to share the Love of Christ through song!! He also has a great sense of humor!

Here are the links:

Videos:
http://www.davidharsh.com/videos.html

More audio:
http://www.myspace.com/davidharsh

Here's the video: (You'll probably want to pause the music that plays in the background so you can hear the audio in this video properly. Just scroll down to right side of the screen and see the "Tunes" area where you can click on the pause button. Then you can play the video embedded below.)




God Bless,

rlk

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Balancing Life – Thoughts on the “Balancing Act” of Life

Let me ask you, is your life balanced well? If you sat down and took an inventory of the activities you’re involved with, does it seem like you’re involved in too much, not enough, or things are just great and everything is balanced with your home, work, ministry, relationships, etc? Are you feeling exhausted or invigorated by your activities? We all have multiple areas and activities in life that we all have to manage and balance and seek the Holy Spirit’s help to spotlight areas that are out of balance because each area needs to have proper priority so you can live your life to the fullest for Him as a blessing to all those He’s places in your life.

The above questions are important questions to ask yourself from time to time and seek God about.

Personally I’ve been seeking God on many things related to this as I’ve sense for some time now that, (without going into too many personal details here) my life isn’t as balanced as it should be. Some weeks I spend close to as much time serving in ministry as I do through work and then my relationships suffer because of it because I’m not home or available and physically and spiritually I’ve become exhausted at times.


I’m someone who tends to give more than 110% to almost everything God places before me and I started asking myself some tough questions as things were brought to my attention by The Lord as I was seeking Him. During this effort I was blessed to go to a weekend retreat just a few weeks ago now. Over that weekend I sought God on these things and heard from Him clearly regarding some changes I need to make in my life – changes that He wanted and wants me to change. Changes that will ultimately allow me to by His grace, de-stress, unburden, and balance my life better so I can serve Him more effectively and I can care for and build up my wife, children and other relationships more! He also showed me that I’ll also be able to focus and do even better in the ministries He has me involved with if I do things His way and He also reminded me of the equally important area of life which is investing more into the lives of my wife, kids and other relationships!

One of the tough things he showed me is that I needed to resign from one of the ministries and teams at church that I’m very passionate about. God showed me that I’ve done all He wants me to do with it and just that one ministry will free up more time as some weeks I was spending upward toward 15+ hours a week, (which included meetings and tasks that needed to be accomplished) on top of everything else. It was very tough to resign but once I did, I was at peace about it because I knew God directed my path and I wasn’t feeling regret or over analyzing things like I always do!

You see, I don’t easily stop serving as God has passionately wired me to serve and shepherd wherever He’s placed me. So, If it was up to me, I'd still be continuing to knock myself out trying to do everything and serve all but this is a season for me to take a step back and seek more direction and concentrate on all the aspects of the life He's blessed me with, again, I'm seeking His guidance to balance things out better.

I'm not sure if everyone understands but When God "hits you over the head with a hammer" to get your attention, you/I need to be obedient to listen. :-)

One side note, in the above example I was somewhat surprised that only two people even wondered or asked, “is everything alright?”, (not that I was trying to make a statement by stepping down) since I was a part of this team since the beginning. You just never know what people are thinking or what assumptions people make but the one thing I’ve learn in observation over the years is that if you’re concerned about someone, you just need to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading and simply ask them. :=) I digress I suppose…

I’m sure in the coming week/months; He will reveal more work He wants me to do in order to balance life out so I can more effectively live for and serve Him! I’m also sure that as I continue to seek Him He’ll give me even more clarity regarding the areas where He wants to serve where I’ll grow and serve Him more effectively!

I share all this as a practical example of something we as believer’s need to consider and seek the Lord on. We cannot keep going at 100 mph all the time because the more we do so, the more out of balance our lives become and the less we'll tend to hear and see His direction for our lives! Why? Because our vision tends to become foggy sometimes as we're too busy serving Him to step back and hear and see Him! Or another way to put it is that we become too busy in the activities of serving Him and living life that we aren't stepping back and being nourished by Him which is very important for obvious reasons.

If you’re reading this and you happen to not be a Christian, in a practical sense you should also consider balancing your life out as well. Let me also encourage you to investigate for yourself what a relationship with God is all about - What does it mean to be a Christian? For more information to help you in your investigation - you might find this entry titled “Journey of Grace” helpful. At the bottom of the article you’ll find some useful resource links as well.

As I bring this entry to a close, (I might write more on this topic at a later date) I wanted to share an article that provide additional thoughts and tips on this topic of Balancing the Christian life which has some helpful tips and will encourage you to start seeking the Lord on the state of your life, whether it’s balanced or not.

Please scroll down to read the article.

For Additional Thoughts and Reflection please also see the below resources on your way to the article:

I found a good blog entry recently that has additional thoughts on balancing life by a director at Dallas Theological Seminary the entry is title, “Balancing Life & the Christian Life.”

Also for a great book on Balancing the Christian life check out “Balancing The Christian Life” by Charles Ryrie. Some versions come with a study guide as well which will help you dig a little deeper through each chapter. This is a text that I had to read and study in Bible College.

_____________________________________________________________

Balance Your Life Well

Whitney Hopler
Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer

Editor's Note: The following is a report on the practical applications of Bill Butterworth's book, On the Fly Guide to Balancing Work and Life, (Waterbrook Press, 2006).

Stress, frustration, exhaustion, and guilt are the symptoms of a life out of balance. You’ll feel them if your work eclipses your relationships. You want to be successful at everything in your life, but too often, you run out of time and energy trying to do it all.

The key is realizing that life isn’t a sprint – it’s a marathon. If you balance your life at the right steady pace, you can achieve long-term fulfillment.

Here’s how you can balance your life well:

Pursue endurance. Stop rushing through life as if it were a sprint instead of a marathon. Don’t burn yourself out. Pray for the patience you need to approach situations with endurance. Ask God to give you His eternal perspective on the various aspects of your life.

Get rid of the “hazies.” Don’t let hazy thinking cause you to lose sight of your long-term goals. Think and pray about what’s most important, and establish priorities. Then make all your decisions with those priorities in mind. Remember that you only have so much time and energy; use it well. Focus just on what choices are best for you to avoid being distracted by the many other good choices you have available. Regularly remind yourself of your priorities, and build your schedule around activities that will most help you fulfill those priorities. Study how you usually spend your time, and notice how you’re currently balancing your attention between tasks and relationships. Frequently stop to consider whether or not you’re living your life in a way that would cause you no regrets if you were to die unexpectedly.

Ask yourself these questions to check your priorities: “What is my mission in life?”, “Why do I do this kind of work?”, “Where is my focus these days?”, “What are my long-term goals?”, “What are the important things in life to me?”, “Who are the three people to whom I am closest?”, “Are my relationships characterized more by giving or by getting?”, “Are my relationships characterized by love?”, “Who would I like to get to know better in the next six months?”, “To whom am I accountable?”, “Do I set aside a regular time and place for reflection?”, “What does quietness look like in my life?”, “What is the most common roadblock that keeps me from a regular time of quietness?”, “How might keeping a journal help me to achieve more balance?” and “What qualities would I most like to possess?”.

Get rid of the “lazies.” Ask God to help you develop the self-discipline you need to bring your life into the right balance. Realize that you will have to make some sacrifices to achieve a healthy balance in your life; be willing to do so. Know that you should eliminate one activity from your schedule for every new activity to which you commit. Be creative about how you can cut down on your work hours to free up more time for your relationships. Consider shifting your work hours to times that conflict less with your family’s schedule, eliminating distractions that decrease your productivity during work hours, delegating certain tasks to others, and other solutions that will free up time for you. Be patient while working to achieve your career goals; acknowledge that it will take some time to earn a promotion, start a business, etc., and don’t burn yourself out while you work toward those goals. Don’t let your job become the dominant influence in your life, crowding out everything else that’s also important. Instead, be proactive and intentional about planning your life well.

Ask yourself these questions: “Will the thing that is causing imbalance in my life really matter 10 years from now?”, “Is it possible for me to do fewer unimportant things at work and outside the office?”, “Can I accomplish my goals and be flexible at the same time?”, “Can I replace ‘either/or’ thinking with ‘both/and’ solutions?”, “Can I work smarter as opposed to harder?” , “Can I pencil in time to reflect on my life on a regular basis?” , “What issues in life and on the job should I plan for so I can stick to my priorities?”, “How can I become more flexible?”, “How can planning help me understand what is really important?”, “How can I include time-sensitive matters in my planning?”, “Do I have a strategy to deal with urgent matters without forgetting about the important things?”, “Can planning help me anticipate problems before they arise?”, “How can focusing help me cut down my time spent doing things that don’t matter?”, “Can I commit to the practice of not adding anything more to my schedule without first taking something else away?”, “Can I begin to think in terms of what must be done versus what might need doing?”, “How good am I at delegating tasks instead of postponing them?”, “How can I avoid traps like excess paperwork or the interruptions of the phone, fax, or pager?”, “Do I need to plan fun in my life, or does it just happen for me?”, “What are the methods I have used in the past for recharging my physical and emotional batteries?” and “How can I overlap the concept of fun with the concept of connecting to other people?”.

Get rid of the “crazies.” Don’t allow your life to run out of control. Learn to say “no” or “not right now” to requests for your time and energy that don’t reflect your current priorities. Think of the people (your spouse, each of your kids, each of your friends, etc.) and things (your job, your volunteer activities, your church, your gym, etc.) that demand your time in terms of laps you run around a track. Then prioritize those laps into levels of importance, and consider what changes you should make to how you spend your time. Pace yourself so you include significant time in your life for both learning and leisure, as well as labor.

As you consider learning in your life, ask yourself: “What class would be enjoyable and enriching for me to take?”, “What is the last book I read, and when did I read it?”, “What book would I enjoy reading?”, “What is the biggest hurdle to overcome regarding learning, and how can I get over it?”, “What form of learning do I only dream about, and how can I make that dream a reality?”. As you consider leisure in your life, ask yourself: “What is my favorite form of leisure?”, “How can I incorporate leisure into my routine?”, “How can my fun activities even benefit me at work?”, “Am I getting enough exercise?”, “Am I eating healthy?”, “Am I getting enough sleep?” and “How can I better mix business and pleasure?”. As you consider labor in your life, ask yourself: “How can I be more efficient at work?”, “What would make my work more significant?”, “How can I refocus my job so that it helps me achieve my life’s goals?”, “How do I prioritize?” and “How can I learn to focus on the most important clients and customers I have, while still getting all my work done?”.

Stay on track. Remember that balancing your life isn’t just a one-time event; it’s a process that needs your constant attention. Stay connected to God through prayer each day and rely on His strength to help you keep your life in the right balance as your circumstances change.

Adapted from On the Fly Guide to Balancing Work and Life, copyright 2006 by Bill Butterworth. Published by WaterBrook Press, a division of Random House, Inc., Colorado Springs, Co., www.randomhouse.com/waterbrook/.

Bill Butterworth blends humor, storytelling, wisdom, and practical advice, which has made him a popular speaker throughout North America. Bill speaks frequently for corporate clients that include American Express, Ford, Disney, Bank of America, and Chrysler. A highly regarded author, Bill has written books on topics ranging from sports to psychology and self-help issues. He has been a columnist, editor, and scriptwriter. Bill lives with his wife, Kathi, in Newport Beach, California.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

FIREPROOF

Hello,

I've taken a few weeks off from writing as life has been crazy busy but I wanted to get back to it by sharing info about an important movie that is coming out this month called FIREPROOF.

It's from the creators of Facing the Giants and I've inserted a widget below so you can view the movie trailer and other information and help spread the word!

For those who are married - whether your marriage is going very well or you're going through a tough season, I want to encourage you to see this movie and encourage others to do the same.

Check out the information and you'll see what I mean and then help spread the word and get as many people, especially married couples, even those who have started the divorce process, to go see this movie!!

I'll be praying that God will use this movie as a tool to strengthen and rebuild marriages and ultimately bring Glory to Him.

If you have problems hearing the audio through the widget, you may need to pause the audio on the playlist Tunes which is on the right side of your screen toward the bottom of the side bar.

All the best!

Your Brother and Servant,

rlk


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Unforgiveness

If you’re a believer, a follower of Jesus Christ, then you’ve experienced the power of forgiveness first hand. Because of your own experience it has become typically easier for you to forgive others when they’ve done you wrong, right? :-) Ok, so maybe it’s not so easy sometimes but since God is helping us grow in the grace and knowledge of Him this is a very needful area that we need to work hard on and allow the Holy Spirit to direct our paths.

You see, unforgiveness has a lot of negative impact on people such as: it steals our joy and even more important it also is contrary to the teachings of The Word of God. It also cheapens the sacrifice He made for you and I when it comes down to it. He first loved and forgave you so in turn you and I need to really work on forgiving others. Now, this doesn’t me we need to “jump back into the snake pit” as they say because sometimes trust takes time but it does mean we are to forgive those, yes even those who “bite” us.

I wanted to share the below devotion with you that is a powerful reminder of unforgiveness and forgiveness.

But before I do, let me share some parting words: I can only imagine the hurt and pain you’ve been through at the hands of others whom you loved and trusted, let me encourage you to forgive them because even if the relationship isn’t back to 100%, you need to begin to heal from the wounds and if you can’t forgive, you won’t totally heal until you do nor can you fully honor God in your life until you do. Seek God, pray hard and give it some thought and God will help see you through!


Your Brother,
rlk


_______________________________________

Unforgiveness
By Pastor James MacDonald


"Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors . . . For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." Matthew 6:14-16


We're on one topic today and we're not getting off it till I'm sure you get it.

Nothing will cut a swath of devastation across your soul like unforgiveness. It is the absolute opposite of the life God calls you to live.

I know someone has hurt you and I'm sincerely sorry for that but you don't have to prove you were right.

You don't have to demonstrate the superiority of anything.
You've got to let it go.


Matthew 6:14-15 says, "If you don't forgive, my Father
won't forgive you."


Living in unforgiveness is a barren, tortured existence. Even those of us who have experienced God's love and forgiveness need to be reminded about what we have received. It's so easy to slide into a self-centered mess of unforgiveness.

Contrary to what some might think, unforgiveness isn't private. People will seethe in silence, insisting, This is just between me and him. But that's not true. It's also destructive to innocent people around you. How many people in your life have suffered because of an unforgiveness issue in your heart that has absolutely nothing to do with them? It seeps into the tone of all your conversations. It leaks out in your impertinence and impatience, your short temper and rashness. People who you love, who have done nothing wrong, suffer because of the unforgiveness that you're holding over someone else.

Unforgiveness is sin. It will eat away at your being until you choose the crisis and commit to the process of forgiveness. But that can all change.

This could be an awesome day--you have the choice to change. You have the chance to choose. I wonder if heaven is leaning over you and wondering what choice you are going to make. Your destiny depends on it.

To clarify, you are not saved by forgiving, but forgiving is what saved people do. This is one of the litmus tests for reality. Making the choice to forgive is one of the things that prove you truly belong to God.

Father, it must grieve Your heart even more than ours to live in such a dark world where people say things and do things that wound so deeply. But by Your grace I can forgive. I can simply release the pain to You and let it go. I choose by an act of my will to trust You and Your Word. I'm not going to hold it over the person who hurt me anymore when I have to see him or talk to him. I'm not going to go over it in my mind anymore. I want to handle it as You would. I want to be a forgiving person.

Forgive me for my pride, my anger, and the pointed comments that reveal the woundedness in my heart. Cover me with Your love. Let Your grace displace all that is ugly and angry and unforgiving in me. By Your grace, I choose to forgive.
In His name. Amen.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A Journey of Grace



A Journey of Grace
By Randolph Koch

A few years ago my family and I spent a week at Nehalem Bay National Park on the Oregon Coast. We camped in a Yurt for almost a week and participated in an Outdoor school with a great group of people/families through a home school group we belong to. 


There was a pioneer theme during the week where the kids learned great information about the pioneers as well as made pioneer crafts and played pioneer/old fashioned games. There was also a daily chapel service where we took a look into the full armor of God. It was a great time all around! There was also a reoccurring theme through the week about grace, God’s grace and during that week as well as when I drove the family home, my mind drifted back to my personal journey of grace – the testimony of how I gratefully came to know Jesus Christ as my savior just two months after I graduated from High School when I was 19 years old. 


Everyone who has come to faith has their own story and in this post I wanted to share a brief glimpse into my journey of Grace, or rather my Journey toward God’s Amazing Grace. I’m hoping that something in this post will be of encouragement to you in your own journey right now as God can heal all your wounds as well – if you’ll allow Him in to do so. I also hope that for those who know or are getting to know me that this will help you get to know me a little better as well.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of ourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” ~Ephesians 2:8-9 (NASB)

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

Happy 4th of July!

Here's a cool video/song from Mark Schultz that will help us all the more get our minds around the 4th of July from Independence day in 1776 to today where brave men and women continue to fight for our freedom and have in many world wars and conflicts around the world.

No matter what country you live in, as a Christian you can thank God for your own Independence Day where He broke the chains of sin in your life when you came to know Him as your Savior for the first time. Since that day, your Independence day, you now celebrate your Dependence on Him as well and each day you can celebrate and thank Him for all these things as you seek Him!

Click on the following video or link to see and listen to this song:
http://www.godtube.com/view_video.php?viewkey=665ce8623e36bd4e3c7c

Friday, June 20, 2008

ITEMinistries!

Wanted to share information with you regarding a wonderful ministry and faithful minister, (Dr. Steve Van Horn) that God is using to train pastors and church leaders in the world who don't have easy access to formal theological eduction.

This is an important ministry that is making an impact for the kingdom as eduction of pastors and church leaders is a vital part of sound Biblical Doctrine, Teaching, and Conduct in the Church and abroad.

Below is a video overview of ITEMinistries (International Training and Equipping Ministries)

Please take a few moments to view the video and then go to the ITEM web site. There is a lot of great information about what God is doing through ITEM provided on the site.

Please remember ITEM and Dr. Van Horn in prayers as well!



Thanks!

RLK

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Spiritual Vitamins


Spiritual Vitamins
By Unknown


Anxious? Take Vitamin A.
All things work together for good for those who love God, who are
called according to his purpose. (Rom 8:28)

Blue? Take Vitamin B.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy
name. (Ps 103:1)

Crushed? Take Vitamin C.
Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. (1 Pet 5:7)

Depressed? Take Vitamin D.
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. (James 4:8)

Empty? Take Vitamin E.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give
thanks to him, bless his name. (Ps 100:4)

Fearful? Take Vitamin F.
Fear not, for I am with you, do not be afraid, for I am your God.
(Isa 41:10)

Greedy? Take Vitamin G.
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down,
shaken together, running over, will be put unto your lap; for the
measure you give will be the measure you get back. (Lk 6:38)

Hesitant? Take Vitamin H.
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who
announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation, who
says to Zion, "Your God reigns." (Isa 52:7)

Insecure? Take Vitamin I.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Phil 4:13)

Jittery? Take Vitamin J.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Heb 13:8)

Know nothing? Take Vitamin K.
Know this that the Lord is God, it is He that made us and not we
ourselves. (Ps 100:3)

Lonely? Take Vitamin L.
Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Mt 28:20)

Mortgaged? Take Vitamin M.
My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Cor 12:9)

Nervous? Take Vitamin N.
Never, no never will I leave you nor forsake you. (Heb 13:5)

Overwhelmed? Take Vitamin O.
Overcome evil with good. (Rom 12:21)

Perplexed or puzzled? Take Vitamin P.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let
your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. (Jn 14:27)

Quitting? Take Vitamin Q.
Quit you like men and women, be strong. (1 Cor 16:13)

Restless? Take Vitamin R.
Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him. (Ps 37:7)

Scared? Take Vitamin S.
Stay with me, and do not be afraid; for the one who seeks my life seeks your life; you will be safe
with me. (1 Sam 22:23)

Tired? Take Vitamin T.
Those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles,
they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. (Isa 40:31)

Uncertain? Take Vitamin U.
Understand that I am (the Lord). Before me no god was formed, nor shall there be any after me.
(Isa 43:10)

Vain? Take Vitamin V.
Vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one. (Acts 5:16)

Wondering what to do? Take Vitamin W.
What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with
your God? (Mic 6:8)

eXhausted? Take Vitamin X.
Exercise thyself rather unto godliness. (1 Tim 4:7)

Yearning for hope? Take Vitamin Y.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for you art with me;
your rod and your staff - they comfort me. (Ps 23:4)

Zapped? Take Vitamin Z.
Zealous for good deeds. (Titus 2:14)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Who I am Makes a Difference!

Dear Friend,

I don't know what kind of week you've had or what you've been going through or what you've gone through in your life but let me encourage you that you make a difference in this world no matter if you realize it or not!

There is no one who is insignificant or or unworthy, especially in the eyes of a Loving God - your Creator!

Don't buy into the lies people tell you because you are capable of great things with God's help and through the gifts and talents He's given you!

Please read the below and I pray that you are as inspired buy the message that is shared. I wanted to pass this on to anyone who might visit this blog and please accept this as my blue ribbon to you! (You'll understand once you read the below)

You're life does make a difference and who you are makes a difference!

In His Love,

Randolph Koch


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

7.8 Magnitude Earthquake in China.

A colleague of mine in Asia forwarded several pictures and articles to me over the last week. (Since the day of the earthquake which was a little over a week ago.)

My heart cries out for these people who have suffered under the weight of the rubble as rescuers search for them, and those who are suffering the loss of their loved ones and for those who have lost their lives.

Please pray for them!

I’ve also learned that Medical Teams International is currently working to send over a half millions pounds of supplies to help them and they’re working with Boeing to deliver the supplies via several new planes that they are already planning to delivery to China. Please pray that this effort will be successful and help support them as God leads!

I’m reminded of the following scripture and will direct my prayers that those who are directly impacted by this disaster will be comforted by Him.

“God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam and the mountains
quake with their surging.”
~Psalm 46:1-3



Again, I will pray that God will comfort them during this devastating time and I'll especially pray that they would come to a personal relationship with the Him. May the Body of Christ be there to minister to the hurting and share His love while meeting the physical needs!

I wanted to share a few pictures that once you see them, I believe you’ll be moved to prayer as I have been. Please note: These images may be disturbing but they are also the reality of what has happened and what is occurring due to the Earthquake. Thanks for your prayers. Please see the below.


Please join me in prayer!

Humbled in Christ,

rlk














A boy is rescued from the debris of a collapsed building after an earthquake in Dujiangyan, Sichuan province May 13, 2008. [Agencies]














Bodies of many of the victims. [Agencies]




















Several young children trapped in the rubble. Note the IV attached to one of them onthe left. Some apparently are alive while some sadly are not. [Agencies]




















Young Man trapped in the rubble. [Agencies]


Young Boy receiving medical attention. [Agencies]


The Remnants of what was once a building. [Agencies]

Please pray!