Dec 05

Help with Marriage Retreat

We have the privilege of doing a marriage retreat in Feb. of 2013 in Marshall County, KY.  We have done the Dynamic Marriage classes for years and attended various seminars, but this is the first time we have done a marriage retreat as the speakers (I will do the main sessions, but we will have one or more split sessions with Amanda speaking to the ladies).  We have a passion for helping marriages and have been able to work with numerous ones through the years and are thankful for this opportunity.

I need some help from you as I plan this event.

1.  What has been the best type (lecture, interactive, group, etc) of marriage retreat you have attended?

2.  We have four one-hour sessions.  What are the most important and needed topics to be covered?

Please leave any helpful advice in the comments.





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Dec 04

Your Story


Some rights reserved by jjpacres - from Flickr

Some rights reserved by jjpacres – from Flickr

I like good stories and hope to share meaningful stories occasionally on this blog.  Each of us are writing our own story.  Our story is important because it helps shape our self-identity and influences others.  I like to think about it as if we are writing two stories.  The first, I call the facts;  this is what happens to us.  The second, is the choices we make based upon what happens to us.  Peter and Judas are a great example of this point.  They both shared many of the same experiences, yet in the end, they chose much differently.  We are made up of our experiences — the facts of our life.  We must plumb our facts to know our story and seek to understand other people’s story.  We need to listen and learn from the facts.  But that is not the sole story of our lives.  Each person has the power to determine how they will perceive the facts and react to them.  This is why our mental perspective and right thinking is so important.  We must process the events, learn from them, and gain inspiration.  This leads to the final step of acting or writing our own story.  This is about what you do in the present.  You can only control what you can control.  Peter wept bitterly, prayed, found forgiveness, and went on to do great things for Christ (Luke 22:61-62, John 20:1-8, 21:7-19, Acts, 1 and 2 Peter).  Judas was overcome with guilt and committed suicide (Mat. 27:5, Acts 1:16-19).

What is your story?     Consider your facts, reflect and process the emotions from them, and then choose how you are going to write your story through your life and actions.  This is the greatness of the gospel of Christ, we get a fresh start and a new beginning (Rom. 6:3-6, 8:1-8).  The past shapes who you are, but it does not have to define who you are today.  


(To listen to a sermon on this topic go here)



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Nov 27

Life in the Kingdom


Library of Congress Image

[Kidwelly Castle, Carmarthen, Wales]

I chose the name “Life in the Kingdom” for this site, because it captures my purpose.  The kingdom of God has always been an intriguing topic to me.  In its essence it involves the rule or reign of God.  It has reference to the dignity and power of the King.  Jesus came and took the familiar concept and announced its coming during his ministry (Mat. 4:17, 23, Mark 1:14-15, Luke 4:43).  Chiefly, the kingdom is God’s.  Our purpose is to “seek the kingdom of God” (Luke 12:31), or as Matthew recorded, “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.” (Mat. 6:33).  God’s realm of reigning, though He is the God over all creation, is our hearts and minds.  Our purpose as Christians is to submit to His lordship.  The church may be defined as those who have come under the reign of God and accepted His rule in their lives. The church is the present physical manifestation of the kingdom of God.  The kingdom is tied to redemption (Luke 21:28, 31), righteousness (Mat. 6:33), salvation (Mat. 21:9, John 12:15, Rev. 12:10) and forgiveness of sins (Col. 1:13-14, Mat. 18:23-35).  The kingdom is active and present whenever Jesus is present.

To me the concept of the kingdom is bigger and larger than the concept of the church.  It is personal and direct, because it involves personal submission to Christ as king in my heart.  The theme captures the struggle, myself, and every Christian faces each day of “my will versus Thy will.”

Thus, I titled my blog and this site “Life in the Kingdom” because everything that is written here will hopefully have to do with living our life in submission to HIs Will.  It will be about the breaking forth and expansion of the Kingdom of Christ.  it is about life lived within the kingdom.  There will be articles on the church, family life, parenting, ministry, mission, technology, Bible study and much more.  My aim is for me to submit more each day to the rule of God in my heart, while encouraging others to do the same.  This task is grand and involves many different areas.

Won’t you join me on this journey?  Subscribe to the blog by email or through the RSS feed.  Visit the site regularly and leave some comments to bless me and others.  I hope to post around 3 times a week.

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Nov 27

Why I Am Blogging!

Some rights reserved by vandinglewop - Flickr Creative Commons

Some rights reserved by vandinglewop – Flickr Creative Commons

I am finally taking the plunge.  I have thought about blogging and felt like I should blog for years now.  In fact several years back I started a site, but never posted the first blog.  But I have been reading blogs for years, have read some instruction on doing blogs by Michael Hyatt and others, and now I am ready. All I needed for the final push was Amanda, my wife, to encourage me and say she wanted to blog too.  So we purchased a domain name – and made a 3 year commitment through Bluehost.  Her blog will be at  I will also be giving family tips, trips, and other information out at the Ketchum Klan site on its blog, though much more sporadic.

Why do I want to do this?

  1. I need to do this for myself.  I need to improve as a writer.  I need another outlet to share my Biblical and life discoveries that I make to a larger audience.  I need to be challenged to think, clarify, and share on various topics and themes.
  2. I want to contribute to others.  I am doing this as a part of my stewardship to God as a minister in the church.  This is a popular form of communication and teaching today, and I need to use it to further increase my teaching scope and share resources that I am mining through work with the local church.  I hope to contribute to my fellow brethren and to the world.  I have taken so much wisdom, lessons, and encouragement from other blogs, I feel a need to join the community, and contribute.  I hope I can be a blessing.
  3. I want to add value to others while glorifying and representing Christ.  I want this to be a place for my thinking, hopefully my best thinking.  I hope it will be a place that can be a storehouse of my thoughts, faith journey, church and family philosophy.  I want it to be a site that will add value and be helpful to all types of folks.

This is why I am blogging.  I hope that you will read and give me feedback and suggestions along the way.  I hope for a conversation and dialogue along the way as we all seek to learn and grow in the Kingdom.



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