My Walk.

Twenty-one years of military service allowed me to see and experience many things. To live in many unique and beautiful places and to enjoy many different cultures. Even with all that there was a part of me missing, a part I searched for, that I tried to fill, not always in the best way or with the right thing. It took me many years and often an unpleasant journey to eventually find what had been missing, I needed a personal relationship with God. By bringing Jesus into my life I found what I had been missing.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

That verse says it all in my case. If you had known me before and now seen me you would agree. So this Blog is going to be a piece of my journey, I will rant, rave, confess, share hope, question and, I also hope testify "The Good News". So I invite you to drop by and see how my Journey through this wilderness is progressing. God Bless each and everyone of you.

~ Kent

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

God is with us

God has given us this awesome promise in His
Word: Whatever He wills for us, He will also
work within us to accomplish. You and I will
never be in a position where we are unable to
fulfill His plans for us. He is always right there
beside us, strengthening us for the tasks He has
planned for us.
I pray you will allow the Lord, through the
power of the Holy Spirit, to strengthen and
equip you to live a life that is pleasing to Him.
My friend, that is life at its very best

A Little Inspiration

When the  child of God
Loves the Word of God
And sees the Son of God, 
He is changed by the Spirit of God
Into the image of God
For the glory of God
Because he has found the truth of God.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Prayer, Fellowship with Our Father.


A pastor once asked his church to pray that GOD would shut down a neighborhood bar. The whole church gathered for an evening prayer meeting, pleading with GOD to rid the neighborhood of the evils of this bar. A few weeks later, lightning struck the bar and it burned to the ground.
     Having heard about the church's prayer crusade, the bar owner promptly sues the church. When the court date finally arrived, the bar owner passionately argued that GOD struck his bar with lightning because the church members' prayers. The pastor backtracked, brushing off the accusations. He admitted the church prayed, but he also affirmed that no one in his congregation really expected anything to happen.
    The Judge leaned back in his chair, a mix of amusement and perplexity on his face. Finally he spoke. "I can't believe what I'm hearing. Right in front of me is a bar owner who believes in the power of prayer and a pastor who doesn't."

It's funny, I have heard this story now twice in the last week or so. First by reading the book "The Christian Atheist" by Craig Groeschel and second by having lunch with my friend Tommy.  In the last two weeks, prayer is a reoccurring subject that keeps popping up again and again every time I turn around.
     It seems to be the truth that there are many people who claim to have a relationship with God, who believe in God, but they don't believe in prayer. They may even claim to believe that prayer works, but their actions say otherwise. Some rarely pray, and when they do they don't expect anything to change.

     I believe that many Christian's create long lists of reasons in their heads why not to pray, from feeling we're not good enough at it, to being bored when we do pray; from not wanting to bother God with our small requests, to not thinking our prayers can actually make a difference.
Many of us fear that we aren't good enough, eloquent enough, or passionate enough. Instead of trying and failing, we don't try at all. We forget that God loves the prayers of imperfect people, people who know they've done wrong, who know they are helpless on their own, who reach out to God, who know they need him.
     Perhaps sometimes prayer simply bores us. Our minds wander in the middle of a conversation with the Creator of the universe. Random thoughts enter our head, worries intrude. Have I taken care of my bills, did I get that little thing I was supposed to do at work done, when is my son's next football game, or the million other pressing thoughts or concerns that intrude upon us. I know that once I'm bored or distracted, I feel so guilty I don't want to keep praying.
      It can not be denied that when prayer becomes an empty, meaningless ritual, it is boring. But if you take but just a moment to realize - that the God of the universe is honestly, truly excited to hear from you- that alone will change your attitude toward prayer.  Move the focus from yourself to God.  This is the beginning to making prayer fresh and exciting.

James 5:16

The Message (MSG)
 16-18Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with. Elijah, for instance, human just like us, prayed hard that it wouldn't rain, and it didn't—not a drop for three and a half years. Then he prayed that it would rain, and it did. The showers came and everything started growing again.

Prayer is fellowshiping with the father - a vital personal contact with God, Who is more than enough. We are to be in constant communion with Him.
As Christians we must realize that nothing lies beyond the reach of prayer  except that which lies outside the will of God. Prayer can do anything that God can do, and God can do anything. Too many people forget that prayer is talking to God, not merely repeating words. Jesus said we are not to pray with vain repetition.
     Prayer that brings results must be based on Gods word.

Hebrews 4:12

Amplified Bible (AMP)
12For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the [a]breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.

For many Christians the major failure in life is failing to learn to pray. There is no need in your life that proper prayer could not supply that need nor is there any sin you may be tempted with in your life that proper prayer could not avoid. 
 For in the model prayer in Matthew 6:9-13 who was the Lord speaking to if not the common man. "In this manner, therefore, pray." This is a guide to show us how to pray. Pray like this! 

I tell you that anyone who can talk to an earthly father  can talk to their heavenly Father. You do not have to pray in old English, or convoluted terms, or poetic meter. God is not looking for you to mimic Shakespeare or sound the part of an educated man. You can just talk to God out of your heart. That's the way a child talks to his father. How often did you as a child meet your father at the door as he came home from work and say. "Hail thou ruler of the  domicile. I welcome thee home from thy Sojourn". I can sure promise you it did not go down like that at my house. More likely was "Daddy!! I love you (pause for the shaking bear hug), It's so good you are home. 
It does not mean that we are to be irreverent or disrespectful to God, just that we can speak to God right out of our hearts and say to him, "Father".

Galatians 4:6

 6 Since you are now God’s children, he has sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts. The Spirit cries out, “ Abba[a] Father.”

Abba An Aramaic word that was used by Jewish children as a name for their fathers.
So I can call the great God- the one who created the heavens and the earth, who made the waters rise, heaped up the mountains and flung out the stars. Who created all things, "Daddy"? Would that be irreverent? No.
Read above again Galatians 4:6  God's Spirit in our hearts cries out "Abba, Father". As a child of God, you have a right to talk to Him, as you would to your own father.
     I know a young lady who has been raised in the mindset that she has to pray through a priest or a saint. Many people have illustrated this by using the example of talking to the president. They say you would not go directly to the president; you would go to your senator or congressman. Then he would go to the president for you. Well friend, I am not going to go through my congressman if the president is my daddy.
     You can go directly to God , your Father if you are born again by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Personal Savior and Lord.

With nothing outside the reach of prayer than we would be foolish to not learn to pray.

Look for further Topics on Prayer.

Monday, February 27, 2012

A Traveling Saint

Sometimes you come across one of those stories that makes you think, that touches your heart and grants you a new perspective. 

Approaching a homeless stranger in need may seem like an uncomfortable experience to you. But you never know who you’re going meet, what stories they’ll have to tell. Just because someone may be wearing dirty, tattered clothes or begging on the street doesn’t mean they are less a child of God.
Read this amazing true story from the Rev. Richard D. Ryan about his incredible encounter with a strange wandering man of God named Daniel.

The Day I Met Daniel
It was an unusually cold day for the month of May. Spring had arrived and everything was alive with color. But a cold front from the north had brought winter’s chill back to Indiana.
I sat with two friends in the picture window of a quaint restaurant just off the corner of the town square. The food and the company were both especially good that day. As we talked, my attention was drawn outside, across the street. There, walking into town, was a man who appeared to be carrying all his worldly goods on his back. He was carrying a well-worn sign that read, “I will work for food.”
My heart sank. I brought him to the attention of my friends and noticed that others around us had stopped eating to focus on him. Heads moved in a mixture of sadness and disbelief. We continued with our meal, but his image lingered in my mind.
We finished our meal and went our separate ways. I had errands to do and quickly set out to accomplish them. I glanced toward the town square, looking somewhat half-heartedly for the strange visitor. I was fearful, knowing that seeing him again would call for some response. I drove through town and saw nothing of him. I made some purchases at a store and got back in my car. Deep within me, the Spirit of God kept speaking to me: “Don’t go back to the office until you’ve at least driven once more around the square.”
And so, with some hesitancy, I headed back into town. As I turned the square’s third corner, I saw him. He was standing on the steps of the stone-front church, going through his sack. I stopped and looked, feeling both compelled to speak to him, yet wanting to drive on. The empty parking space on the corner seemed to be a sign from God: an invitation to park. I pulled in, got out and approached the town’s newest visitor.
“Looking for the pastor?” I asked.
“Not really,” he replied.
“Just resting.”
“Have you eaten today?”
“Oh, I ate something early this morning.”
“Would you like to have lunch with me?”
Do you have some work I could do for you?”
“No work,” I replied. “I commute here to work from the city, but I would like to take you to lunch.”
“Sure,” he replied with a smile.
As he began to gather his things, I asked some surface questions.
“Where you headed?”
“St. Louis.”
“Where you from?”
“Oh, all over; mostly Florida.”
“How long you been walking?”
“Fourteen years,” came the reply.
I knew I had met someone unusual. We sat across from each other in the same restaurant I had left only minutes earlier. His hair was long and straight, and he had a neatly trimmed dark beard. His skin was deeply tanned, and his face was weathered slightly beyond his 38 years. His eyes were dark yet clear, and he spoke with an eloquence and articulation that was startling.
He removed his jacket to reveal a bright red T-shirt that said,
“Jesus is The Never Ending Story.”
Then Daniel’s story began to unfold. He had seen rough times early in life. He’d made some wrong choices and reaped the consequences. Fourteen years earlier, while backpacking across the country, he had stopped on the beach in Daytona. He tried to hire on with some men who were putting up a large tent and some equipment. A concert, he thought. He was hired, but the tent would not house a concert but revival services, and in those services he saw life more clearly. He gave his life over to God.
“Nothing’s been the same since,” he said. “I felt the Lord telling me to keep walking, and so I did, some 14 years now.”
“Ever think of stopping?” I asked.
“Oh, once in a while, when it seems to get the best of me. But God has given me this calling. I give out Bibles. That’s what’s in my sack. I work to buy food and Bibles, and I give them out when His Spirit leads.”
I sat amazed. My homeless friend was not homeless. He was on a mission and lived this way by choice. The question burned inside for a moment and then I asked: “What’s it like?”
“To walk into a town carrying all your things on your back and to show your sign?”
“Oh, it was humiliating at first. People would stare and make comments. Once someone tossed a piece of half-eaten bread and made a gesture that certainly didn’t make me feel welcome. But then it became humbling to realize that God was using me to touch lives and change people’s concepts of other folks like me.”
My concept was changing too. We finished our dessert and gathered his things. Just outside the door he paused. He turned to me and said, “Come ye blessed of my Father and inherit the kingdom I’ve prepared for you. For when I was hungry you gave me food, when I was thirsty you gave me drink, a stranger and you took me in.”
I felt as if we were on holy ground. “Could you use another Bible?” I asked. He said he preferred a certain translation. It traveled well and was not too heavy. It was also his personal favorite.

“I’ve read through it 14 times,” he said.
“I’m not sure we’ve got one of those, but let’s stop by our church and see.” I was able to find my new friend a Bible that would do well, and he seemed very grateful. “Where you headed from here?” I asked.
“Well, I found this little map on the back of this amusement park coupon.”
“Are you hoping to hire on there for a while?”
“No, I just figure I should go there. I figure someone under that star right there needs a Bible, so that’s where I’m going next.
“He smiled, and the warmth of his spirit radiated the sincerity of his mission.
I drove him back to the town square where we’d met two hours earlier, and as we drove, it started raining. We parked and unloaded his things.
“Would you sign my autograph book?” he asked. “I like to keep messages from folks I meet.”
I wrote in his little book that his commitment to his calling had touched my life. I encouraged him to stay strong. And I left him with a verse of scripture, Jeremiah 29:11. “I know the plans I have for you,” declared the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a future and a hope.”
“Thanks, man,” he said. “I know we just met and we’re really just strangers, but I love you.”
“I know,” I said. “I love you, too.”
“The Lord is good.”
“Yes. He is. How long has it been since someone hugged you?” I asked.
“A long time,” he replied.
And so on the busy street corner in the drizzling rain, my new friend and I embraced, and I felt deep inside that I had been changed.
He put his things on his back, smiled his winning smile and said, “See you in the New Jerusalem.”
“I’ll be there!” was my reply.
He began his journey again. He headed away with his sign dangling from his bed roll and pack of Bibles.
He stopped, turned and said, “When you see something that makes you think of me, will you pray for me?”
“You bet,” I shouted back. “God bless.”
“God bless.”
And that was the last I saw of him. Late that evening as I left my office, the wind blew strong. The cold front had setted hard upon the town. I bundled up and hurried to my car. As I sat back and reached for the emergency brake, I saw them-a pair of well-worn brown work gloves neatly laid over the length of the handle. I picked them up and thought of my friend and wondered if his hands would stay warm that night without them. I remembered his words:
“If you see something that makes you think of me, will you pray for me?”
Today his gloves lie on my desk in my office. They help me to see the world and its people in anew way, and they help me remember those two hours with my unique friend and to pray for his ministry. “See you in the New Jerusalem,” he said. Yes Daniel, I know I will.
- Rev. Richard D. Ryan