Wednesday, October 28, 2015


There is a particular verse in the Bible that never fails to convict me, and, at the same time, motivate me.  It is found in the Book of Romans, chapter 12 and verse 11: Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.” [NIV] The Living New Testament is a little more common and confrontational in the way it says it: Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.”
I am grateful for the work ethic instilled in my by my parents.  They set the example with their ‘early to bed and early to arise’ approach to daily life.  As a rule, my little brother and I were not allowed to sleep in, even on Saturday mornings.  And, we were not allowed to stay up late, even on Friday nights.  We had ‘chores’ to do. [Now that’s a word you don’t hear much anymore!]  When the basement flooded, Dave and I were the ‘drop and mop’ brigade.  When the green beans and strawberries were ready, we were the two-man picking, snapping and stemming crew.  In the summers I could play Little League baseball in the evenings as long as I worked during the daytime cutting corn out of the beans and weeds out of the corn for a farmer in our church.  But I have to say, as a result of the diligence and persistence by my parents, I got it… probably too well.  My problem has been achieving balance from the other direction.  I used to feel guilty for taking a day off.  I used to think I was a ‘shirker’ when I would take a vacation.  Through the years I have mellowed some.  I have no problem now, taking a Sabbath day once a week and a Sabbath week at least once a quarter every year. 
But, here’s the thing: For me, serving the Lord has never felt like work.  There is something that is regenerating in the process of working hard for God purpose.  And I am thankful that there is no mandatory retirement age for doing ministry.  I can do it voluntarily even after I have ceased to do it vocationally.  In fact, there are always positions open to anyone and everyone.  My 97-year old mother is in a retirement facility, but she has a prayer ministry, a teaching ministry, a reading to the visually impaired ministry, an encouragement ministry that she discharges daily for the benefit of the other residents.  I am still, to this day, challenged by her example of selfless service.
Pray with me…Father God, Jesus is the Lord of the harvest.  Help us to resolve never to be tired in or retired from His service as along as we live… because He is working with us as we make ourselves available to Him.  In His name we humbly pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

Friday, October 23, 2015

Special Message 10/23/15

Last weekend [10.17-18.15] at Crossroads Christian Church there was a disruption toward the conclusion of the 10:45 AM worship service created by a vagal episode [fainting] experienced by a man seated in the rear south section of the Worship Center.  It appeared to his wife and daughter that he was having a heart attack, which was understandable since he grabbed his chest and passed out.  They cried out for help and several responded, among them… a heart surgeon, an orthopedic surgeon, an emergency room doctor, an EMT and a registered nurse! The worship center was packed for the 10:45 service, so many others who were justifiably concerned also responded.  Pastor Ken redirected our attention to the front and finished the teaching which was [providentially?] on the topic… God Works The Night Shift: “He is Helping Me So I Can Help Others.” 
Here is an update from the wife’s Facebook page: “Dear friends and family, thank you so much for praying! Jeff had an episode at church this morning that scared us. He passed out, became unconscious, and caused quite the stir! I called for a doctor in the house and they were jumping pews to get to us. He even had a string of external chest compressions for good measure! He awakened and was transported to the ER via ambulance. They believe he had a vagal response causing the episode. His heart was checked, blood work and EKGs all normal, praise God! He is home and we will continue looking into this. We have seen the hand of God so much the past 2 weeks. This morning was no exception. Our "big" church became small as people stopped and prayed, took my upset daughter and prayed, and drove my car to the ER. The church stopped and prayed. That's right; the whole church! I love my church home, and my friends who stopped wherever they were today on a whim to pray…And, I'm so thankful. 
Some ‘learnings’ from this event:
-Crossroads is blessed to have both medical people and law enforcement people in every service, who are trained and authorized to intervene in the event of an emergency.
-When a disruption in a service happens in a room as large as our worship center, the most helpful thing you can do is to remain seated and quiet, allowing our response personnel to do their jobs most effectively.
-Silently pray for the person/persons who have been affected.  More often than not, a pastor will stop and lead out in prayer… immediately, IF the nature of the situation is known, and otherwise before the conclusion of the worship service.

Pastor Ken 

Monday, October 19, 2015


A good friend recently asked me to condense Kaylene’s and my marriage of 47 years into a series of succinct ‘charges’ that he could share with his daughter and soon-to-be son in law during their upcoming wedding ceremony.  I gave it my best shot.  I needed 7… that’s God’s perfect number.  My qualifier here is that no marriage between two flawed people can be perfect!  But even though it can’t be perfect, it can still be great!  So…
Love each other…I am talking about a rare commodity these days.  I am talking about committed love.  This is a love that closes off any escape hatches with the dogged determination by both that one day ‘we will die in each other’s arms’ [or, at least, each commit to pushing the other’s wheel chair].
Tell the truth to each other…It is easy to tell the other person what they want to hear or what makes you look good in their eyes.  But love requires respect, respect requires trustworthiness and trustworthiness requires telling the truth.  There should not be secrets between soul mates.
Forgive each other…Hurting your husband or wife may be unavoidable, but it should never be intentional.  And, when an offense happens, whether accidental or on purpose, whether a little slight or a big disappointment; extending grace is vital.
Pray for each other…Bonding cannot help but happen in the process of thanking God for all that you love about your mate or interceding before the throne of grace for all that you would like to see change in your mate. 
Be patient with each other…Allow time and room to grow in the years ahead.  Before marriage, opposites will often attract.  After marriage, opposites will often attack.  Don’t let it happen to you!
Serve each other…Life will have hard passages that are unseen/unknown to you both on your wedding day.  In the little ways and through the big trials, think of the other first.  Home is where each lives for the other and both live for God. 
Have fun with each other…Christian marriage is called the ‘grace of life’ in I Peter 3:7.  In other words, God’s will is that the deepest and best experiences in life be experienced in the context of a God-honoring marriage and a Christian family.  That has to include enjoying life together.  Play nice and play as often as you responsibly can. 
Above all, love Jesus above all.  This is a ‘top-button truth.’  If you get it right, the other things in your life and marriage will line up as they should to honor God and bless you both!
Pray with me…Father God, sometimes Christian marriage and family life is an unsurpassable joy; sometimes it is just a lot of hard work.  But in whatever season, and in whatever circumstances, we want to both bring our best and submit to Your best.  Give us your grace in our time of need.  We pray in the Name of Jesus, the Bridegroom of His Bride, the church, amen.

Pastor Ken

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


A few years ago I had a personal frontal assault by the Freedom From Religion Foundation.  It did not distract me in the least since I have the strong conviction that if you are criticized/opposed by certain individuals/groups it actually carries the force of a compliment.  Your character is revealed as much by who your enemies are as by who your friends are.  And if you are opposed by the FFRF, believe me, you are in good company. This anti-Christian organization becomes more militant with every passing year.  Their most recent assault is to file a federal lawsuit against Concord Community Schools in Elkhart, IN demanding an injunction that would forbid the school from the presentation of a live Nativity Scene in telling the story of the birth of Jesus at Christmas!
The FFRF has, in recent years, waged a relentless campaign of fear and intimidation against churches and schools across America…all for the purpose of eliminating Christianity from the public marketplace.  But, unlike many educators, the Concord School Boardhas decided to stand up to the out-of-town bullies and has refused to comply.   They have drawn a line in the sand to say, ‘No further!’  Finally!  A school district unwilling to retreat, willing to fight these liberal Wisconsin bullies in open court.  Thousands have rushed to the school district’s defense.
Pray with me…Father God, You are our ultimate defender and vindicator.  We confess it is sometimes hard to know when to stand down and when to stand firm.  We pray for Your wisdom to be ours as we try to balance extending grace and contending for truth in our witness for Jesus our culture and in this generation.  We are jealous for Your name and cause.  At the same time, we know it is not by might or by power, but by Your Spirit we will overcome.  In the Name of Jesus, amen.

Pastor Ken

Monday, October 5, 2015


I have an app on my cell phone that I use almost daily.  It is called ONE PLACE.  It is loaded with incredible inspirational content.  It includes a long menu of preachers, Bible expositors and Christian talk show hosts.  I typically feed my mind/soul in the mornings or in the watches of the night when I awaken and can’t get back to sleep.  Some of my personal favorites are James Dobson, Rick Warren, Stuart and Jill Briscoe, Adrian Rodgers, Ravi Zacharias, Ann Graham Lotz, Andy Stanley, Tony Evans, Greg Laurie, Emerson Eggerichs and, of course, Kyle Idleman :0].
I love listening and learning… filling my own uplifted cup so I can fill the uplifted cups of those who depend on me to be a channel of God’s grace and truth to their lives and families.   There are men and women I trust to speak into me.  And there are men and women into whom I am trusted to speak as their pastor teacher. 
But, although I am well fed by the availability of such highly valued resources, I have found that there is no substitute for hearing from God as He speaks directly to my heart when I open His Word and in the times when I open my heart to Him in solitary prayer.  I am sure it is because He has put His name on the line, guaranteeing that He will be found when we seek Him… Jesus said, “For everyone who asks, receives.  Everyone who seeks, finds.  And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” [Luke 11:10] And the letter of James makes it clear, “Come near to God and he will come near to you…” [James 4:8]
Pray with me… Father God, the truth that you desire us, that you love us, that you want to meet with us and communicate to us, is too wonderful for comprehension!  You are our Creator and our Father.  We find all we need in You.  In Jesus’ Name, amen.

Pastor Ken