Marquee Encouragement

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Vision

We are in the 2nd day of the 626 Mandate prayer movement. I have been so encouraged when it is my turn to pray. When I log on to the 626 Mandate website there are people’s names and the churches they are from that scroll across the bottom. It is like a marquee announcing that “we are not alone” and “we are part of something greater.”

This was element of the vision when we decided to be a part of AMI – that we would be building God’s Kingdom together with people with like-minds and the same passion for the things of God.

It is exciting to know that God is starting with the prayer movement. I can’t wait for the day when we will be planting churches together with the AMI churches around the world. We are already doing missions together… and now the church plants are around the corner.

Open Doors at NU

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Victories

It has been a 7 month process, but God has finally answered our prayers! We have been trying to get recognized as a student group at Northwestern University, so that we can have our regular meetings on the university campus. After a lot of delays and paperwork, we are going to finally have our first Sunday Celebration this coming Sunday.

This is a momentous time for our church in Chicago.

We have already seen God transform lives and even open new doors for us to reach out to other communities outside of Northwestern University in the last 3 months.

Our new location will be Fisk Hall (1845 Sheridan Rd, Evanston). Fisk hall is inside the Medill School of Journalism.

Here are some old pictures that I found, but I heard that they renovated the chairs and other things to bring it up to 21st century standards. I am pretty excited about this. What a great way to close out of our “Punctuation” series with the “!”… truly it is a time to rejoice.
Fisk Hall3.gif
Outside of Fisk Hall
Fisk Hall1.jpg
Ignore the “Mascot Auditions” – we will have worship songs projected up there.
Fisk Hall2.jpg
By God’s grace, we are hoping to fill this auditorium with passionate worshippers

A Windy Day

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Viewpoint

Today it is estimated that the winds would be blowing up to about 30+ mph. If the weather was warmer it would be a great day to fly a kite!

As I was outside for a little bit, I couldn’t help but to think about the passage in John 3 where Jesus says, “’I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit’” (John 3:5-8).

There are a lot of things that we cannot see in the spiritual realm… but we are able to see the affects. We cannot see the wind, but we are able to see that the wind is present because of the affects it has on our hair (especially when we have long hair).

When the Holy Spirit visits a place, a person is able to know just by looking at the affects of the Holy Spirit – lives are transformed! We are praying that the Holy Spirit will touchdown in our church more often. We want more!

Lenten Season for the Kim Family

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values

The family and I spent some time together today. In our discussions, we talked about Lent (it started today). It has been something that we have been observing together ever since Josiah was old enough to understand what it was about.

In fact, I have wrestled with the dilemma of letting kids observe Lent at such a young age. The last thing I want is my kids growing up to be legalist. But as we shared it more from a worship perspective, we saw our kids wanting to honor God through it.

We went around and shared some of the things that we wanted to “fast” from in order to prepare for Easter. In fact, it was pretty humbling to see some of the things that the kids wanted to lent from… they understand that it will be a sacrifice for them.

All in all, we all made a covenant with one another – to help each other and to keep each other accountable. I was thinking that the kids will have no problem keeping me accountable. I might have to teach them about giving grace when someone slips up once in awhile :-)

Rain Capital’s Dream to Reality

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Vision

I just received news from the guys of Rain Capital, LLC that they were recently awarded a $1,500 “Dare to Dream” Grant from the Zell Lurie Institute.

They entered their proposal under Rain Distributors and now they will have the opportunity to invest the money into some of the projects that were discussed.

These guys will now work directly with experienced entrepreneurs and if their study goes well they can be eligible for an additional grant in September for at least $10,000. Wow!

We, as Christians need to keep on engaging the commerce and marketplace world. God is truly raising up a new breed of Christians that will be the salt and light in the business world. I am so proud of them.

You can check out the awarded list here.

Foggy Day

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values

This morning as I was driving the kids to school, it was difficult to see the road. In fact, I was only able to see about 30 yards in front of me. It was a little bit dangerous but we made it ok.

Then I started to think about fog. It is amazing to think that all these small particles of water are suspended in the air, which reduces visibility. I remember someone once mentioning that if we collected all the particles of water that it would only fill up a glass of water… I am sure they were exaggerating, but it is something to think about.

How can something so small reduce visibility and slow everything down?

There are a lot of illustrations to pull out of that one… but it is a constant reminder that no matter what is clouding our vision, they are minute compared to reality of God.

Even though the fog comes and goes, the road is always constant. We have stay focused and realize that the path is always there for us to go on – we just need to follow it.

626 Mandate Launch Service

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Vision

Even though our time together was short, we were able to pray with fervor and focus. I was especially encouraged to see many of the single adults, who had work the next morning come out to pray.

There are things in life to reveal the condition of our physical health (more of our overestimation of our health). Just take a flight of stairs and you will quickly realize that you are not in shape as you thought. In some ways, I have noticed that trying to motivate and rally people to sign up for the 626 Mandate was a spiritual check-up for our church. I had this discussion with another TLT (trans-local team) leader in AMI.

I don’t know if we are at the spiritual caliber as we think we are… in fact, this is possibly the reason why God placed the burden about focusing on one of the M’s – “maturity” this coming season.

It is my sincere desire that the 626 Mandate will be a spiritual journey for all of us… one in which we will love God more, love His purposes more and also to love His people more.

If you were not able to make it to the launch service yesterday, please watch the introductory video where Pastor Keith shares the essence of the 626 Mandate.

Click here to watch it.

Let’s give ourselves no rest until God accomplishes His will in us.

Isa 62:6-7, “I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the LORD, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth.”

E-Mail Bondage

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Viewpoint

Did you read CNN’s article about e-mail addiction? You can read it here.

This is becoming more of a problem not only in the corporate world but also in the church world, especially amongst pastors and church leaders. I don’t even want to calculate the number of hours I spend daily in responding to people’s e-mails.

I knew it was getting bad when I starting responding to e-mails without a greeting or addressing the person by name (forgive me for those of you who got offended).

There are a lot of people who are trying to take one day out of the week to “sabbath” from e-mail. This might not be a bad idea.

Anyways, CNN also gave a 12-step approach for being set free. It is kind of funny because there is a 12-step approach for everything… now there is one for e-mails.

Lord set me free!

626 Mandate Begins Tonight

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values

The prayer mandate starts tonight at 11:30PM EST.

I am hoping to see many of you at our kick-off service even though it is a bit late for some of the working people.

Here are some quotes on prayer:

“If you are not praying, then one of two things is true: You do not believe the vision is God-given or you are overconfident.” [Adrian Rogers]

“He who has learned to pray has learned the greatest secret of a holy and happy life.” [William Law]

“If man is man and God is God, to live without prayer is not merely an awful thing: it is an infinitely foolish thing.” [Phillips Brooks]

“I don’t ask God to bless what I do. I pray He will help me to do what He blesses.” [Bob Pierce]

“Though you may think yourself ever so dull and incapable of sublime attainments, yet by prayer the possession and enjoyment of God is easily obtained; for He is more desirous to give Himself to us than we can be to receive Him.” [William Backhouse]

One of my favorites:

“The essence of prayer does not consist in asking God for something but in opening our hearts to God, in speaking with Him, and living with Him in perpetual communion. Prayer is continual abandonment to God. Prayer does not mean asking God for all kinds of things we want; it is rather the desire for God Himself, the only Giver of Life. Prayer is not asking, but union with God. Prayer is not a painful effort to gain from God help in the varying needs of our lives. Prayer is the desire to possess God Himself, the Source of all life. The true spirit of prayer does not consist in asking for blessings, but in receiving Him who is the giver of all blessings, and in living a life of fellowship with Him.” [Sundar Singh]

Signing up for 626 Mandate

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Various

In about 24 hours, we will be launching our 2nd 626 Mandate. As we start the prayer movement on the start of Lent (this coming Wednesday), we are hoping that God will do some great things through our prayers. We will conclude the whole 40+ of prayer on Easter.

Since it is a 24/7 prayer movement, we need all the members in the AMI churches to get involved. I was doing some math and I figured out some stats:

• There is a total of 1,104 hours that will have to be accounted for
• It would take about 1,104 people in all the AMI churches to commit to 1 hour of prayer in order for the 24/7 prayer movement to be accomplished
• If a person commits to at least one hour of prayer of the 1,104 hours they will contributing .09% of the all the prayers (and this percentage increase as a person commits more time to prayer)
• There are 12 churches in AMI (if you count the multi-sites) which means that each church will have to cover 92 hours.
• This means that each church will need to roughly cover 2 hours per day

Now that things are in perspective, we all need to do our part in making this prayer movement something that God can use to accomplish His purposes.

Click here to sign up for a time slot.

Purdue College Retreat Update 2

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Visits

We finished off the retreat well. There is a whole generation of college students that are willing to use their degrees and talents for the building of God’s Kingdom. It was encouraging to see many of these Purdue students surrender their futures to the Lord.

I was particularly encouraged by one student who came up to me and shared how he got a specific direction for his life through the last message. I was challenging people with the CHARGE acronym. Specifically, in one of my points on “G – Government and Politics,” I mentioned about the need for people to go into international law in order to help bring transformation to some of the nations around the world.

This student was going to go into criminal justice law but after being challenged with a bigger worldview, he felt like pursuing international law was the direction that God wanted him to go.

The drive back to Ann Arbor was quite an experience! We drove through another blizzard.

By the time we got back to Ann Arbor it was 5AM. As we were unloading the cars, one of the band members said something that made me laugh. They said that this kind of life had to be a “calling.” I chuckled because it was so true… but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Purdue College Retreat Update 1

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Visits

It was a long drive from Ann Arbor to the retreat center near the Purdue University campus. I was going to fly in to Indianapolis, but the cost of the flight was ridiculous. Therefore, I decided to drive down with the worship team. It was good spending some time with them.

Since the retreat is only a day and a half, we do not have much time to really build deep relationships with people. But the people here are so nice (maybe it’s a Midwestern thing) that we were able to connect with them instantly. The people responded well to the first night’s message and prayer time. They are hungry to grow and experience the things of God.

After the worship service, we had some food and fellowship. It was crazy because they had homemade pizza and it was incredibly good (first retreat with homemade pizza for fellowship time). Then I ended up talking with people until the wee-hours of the night. The atmosphere was great to build relationship and meet new people.

In fact, you start to realize how small the world is when you start meeting people that know you or you have seen before.

This morning’s service went well by the grace of God. We are moving towards a goal. We still have two more services (one in the afternoon and one in the evening)… it is a packed retreat but time is being used well.

Please continue to pray for transformation and also for the worship team and me.

Purdue College Retreat

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Visits

I will be heading down to Purdue University on Friday with the worship team for a two day retreat. After many invitations, our schedules finally came together.

God is truly doing something on college campuses all around the United States as well as in other nations. A lot of history’s revolutions have been started in college campuses – where ideologies are formed and dreams are manufactured. Ultimately, movements are birthed.

We need to recapture the college campuses for Christ. It seems like in this generation God is going to do something great.

It is our privilege just to be a part of it all.

More updates will be forthcoming…

The Guardian

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values

Recently, Christina and I watched the movie, “The Guardian” together. It stars Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher. The movie had familiar theme with some predictable parts. But it was a great introduction to the U.S. Coast Guard. I didn’t realize all the training that they had to go though. Their motto is Semper Paratus, which means, “Always Ready.” But throughout the movie there was another underlining motto that they used – “so that others may live.”

When I saw this, God spoke to me about evangelism and sacrifice in a fresh way. It is pretty amazing to see the level of sacrifice of these men and women. They are willing to lay down their lives “so that others may live.” It reminded me of Jesus’ words in 3 occasions:

1) Jn 12:24-25, “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.”


2) Mk 8:34-35, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.”


3) Jn 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

The challenging question for me was – “how much do I believe in this Gospel that I am even willing to lay down my life for it so that others may know and live?”

Christ’s disciples laid down their lives for it… the 1st century Christians laid down their lives for it… many Christians in the 20th century laid down their lives for it… and many are laying down their lives for it now.

I am praying for a fresh wind to blow in our church. We need to recapture the heart of sacrifice and the treasure of the Gospel message – it really needs to be Good News for us.

At the end of the movie, as the credits were rolling (normally, I do not watch the credits), I was still left there pondering on the correlation between the call of the Coast Guards to lay down their lives to save people and the call of the Christian to lay down their lives to preach the Gospel. Then a song started to play along with the credits. The words of the song stirred my heart that I googled it.
Here are the lyrics to Bryan Adams’ song, “Never Let Go,”

Can you lay your life down, so a stranger can live?
Can you take what you need, but take less than you give?
Could you close every day, without the glory and fame?
Could you hold your head high, when no-one knows your name?
That’s how legends are made, at least that’s what they say.

We say goodbye, but never let go.
We live, we die, ‘coz you can’t save every soul.
Gotta take every chance to, show that you’re the kinda man who;
Will never look back, never look down, and never let go.

Can you lose everything, you ever had planned?
Can you sit down again, and play another hand?
Could you risk everything, for the chance of being alone?
Under pressure find the grace, or would you come undone?
That’s how legends are made, at least that’s what they say?

We say goodbye, but never let go.
We live, we die, ‘coz you can’t save every soul.
Gotta take every chance to, show that you’re the kinda man who;
Will never look back, never look down, and never let go.

You can listen to the song here on his