The Delightful Way


I’m an Immortal Warrior, the Son of a Warrior God
November 2, 2006, 1:03 am
Filed under: Warrior

Tonight the ALERT battalion had the incredible privilege of having Anders Johannsen speak for our Wednesday night chapel.
Anders went through ALERT U-13 and completed EMT, AQ, ESO and LAW training before going into the military. He’s been in the military for 4 years, in JSFOC the whole time and has been in combat multiple times during this present war.
He shared his passion: That men be real. His points:
1. We need to make whatever we believe our own and live it.
2. True religion is action. Faith = Action. As he put it, “True religion is courage on the behalf of those who can’t defend themselves, and helping widows and orphans. True religion isn’t words, true religion is action.”
3. We’re children of God. We are called to live like it. “Live lives of excellence,” he admonished, then paused and added, “…or just quit! and walk away from Christianity…Live what you believe!” “We’re called to walk as sons or daughters of a warrior God. If you can’t handle that, if you can’t handle the pressure, step down!”
4. We are commanded to be fearless. Referring to his battlefield success, he stated, “I walk as an immortal. I am the son of a Warrior God. If it is my time to go, there is nothing I can do to stop it. And if it isn’t, watch out, I’m coming at you!”
5. Don’t be afraid of your desires! When Jesus comes into your heart, then your heart is full of Jesus. Once you have fully surrendered to God, he gives you your desires.
6. Trust God completely. Live with complete, committed faith. Learn to surrender. That’s a hard word for men.
Anders illustrated this point with a story about an incident in Afghanistan earlier this year. After some special people had gotten trapped in a bad urban situation, Ander’s team of Green Beret’s went in to extricate them. After several hours, they had isolated the bad guys into a single area and were holding positions to contain them. Anders felt comfortable; he had good weaponry and an excellent position. He knew where the enemy was and he knew they couldn’t move. Then he received a radio call notifying his team that they would pull back to a perimeter they had secured. He didn’t want to. He did not feel like surrendering his position and retreating. After all, he felt he had the situation under control. After command came through, however, he obeyed and fell back. “I then saw the most amazing demonstration of power I’ve ever seen in my life,” he recalls. “We rained hell on those guys.” Air force controllers called in several hours of strikes, gun runs, etc. His conclusion: “When we finally say, ‘I am weak,’ we are stronger than we’d ever imagine.” We need to give up our little positions with our weak little pop-guns and let God take over with his superior fire power. “Don’t try harder, trust more.”

Anders emphasized throughout what he calls “The Warrior Mentality”. This is, he contends, viewing the world through the lens of a soldier. Everything you do is training, and everything you do matters. There is a war, there are good and bad sides, and we are fighting for one or the other, whether we realize
it or not.



Peace and Prudence
September 3, 2006, 10:50 pm
Filed under: Warrior

I’ve been thinking much lately about the paradox posed to those responsible
for protecting and defending others.
On the one hand, we see the need to prepare for the future. The prudent man,
Proverbs says, sees the danger ahead and hides himself. The ant stores up
food for the winter. This is prudence.
On the other hand, we must trust God completely. Dietrich Bonhoeffer
emphasized this in a speech during the 1930’s. After relating several
horrendous actions on the part of the Nazi’s, he asked:
“What is the church’s response to these events? I direct you to Psalm 85:8, I
will hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace unto his
people and to his saints. How does this peace come about? Is it through
machinations of men or their politics or their economics? Perhaps it comes
from power, from rearmament. No; man-made efforts towards peace brings about
the temporary feeling of safety and security, but not real peace. That’s
because we often confuse peace with safety. They are not the same. Peace is a
great venture, it’s a dare to trust God completely. Peace requires us to give
up our illusions of safety and security, our schemes and plans, in order to
rely upon Almighty God alone. Will there still be battles? Yes! But battles
are won not with weapons but with God! They are won where the way leads to
the cross. So ho will peace come? Will it come through individual Christians
who long for it? No. Single voices are easily snuffed out by those who oppose
peace. Only through the Holy and United Church of Christ can the word peace
be spoken. We can do it, today! We can send out a call to peace. But the hour
is late. So why are we waiting? What are we waiting for? How can we wait,
when the world waits for us?”
Powerful words. Although Bonhoeffer’s theology was problematic, I can’t help
but affirm that what he says jives with what I’ve been thinking regarding
trusting God. But it is difficult to swallow the idea of total reliance on
God.
So the question remains: How can I wisely prepare for the future, and yet, at
the same time, rely completely upon God?



Ruminations on the Rise of Complacency
August 14, 2006, 6:48 pm
Filed under: Warrior

I just arrived back in Texas for the Paramedic program at IAA, and have spent
much time the last few days discussing deep things with Isaac Millard, Peter
Janowski and others. One of the major topics has been on the startling apathy
evident in today’s young Protestant Christian Homeschoolers (to borrow Sam’s
phrase). You know the type…dressed neatly, listens to the “right” music,
honors his parents, *never* dreams of doing drugs or alcohol, is committed to
“courting”. He gets honors in all his tests, is on an insane courseload in
homeschool, does all kinds of extracurricular activities with his homeschool
co-op. Never gets in trouble, and all the moms love him.
Yet what does he do for the Lord? When he gets to heaven, he will see the
results of his complacent self-satisfied lifestyle. He will come in as
through a fire, just barely making it. And he will look down towards Hell and
see the untold thousands perishing because he never cared.
On the same token, take a look at the modern youth-group oriented young man.
His jeans low, a t-shirt, shaggy hair, a necklace. Possibly some tattoos.
This guy listens to Christian rock and goes to the movies. His friendships
are broad and include some people we would cringe at. The homeschool kid
would *never* associate with this guy. And yet this guy does care. He is
evangelizing. Instead of spending his summer mowing lawns, listening to
classical music, and attending summer science co-ops, this guy is doing
missions work in third-world countries. When he gets to heaven, he will be
showered with rewards and many, many people will line up to thank him for
keeping them from hell.
What are you doing? Do you care? Every day, millions die and enter eternal
damnation, yet the majority of Protestant Christian Homeschoolers seem
unaware of their existence. It is time for young men to rise above their
current infantile impotence, to cast off the chains of apathy and rise up.
Someone once challenged Jim Eliot with this: “The world has yet to see what
one man fully surrendered to God can accomplish.” I would take this a step
further and challenge you to join this revolution:
“The world has yet to see what many men fully surrendered to God can
accomplish. Never underestimate the power of teamwork and combined zeal for
Christ’s work.” The world needs to see a force, a band of Christian men in
brotherhood rising up against the burgeoning tide of darkness and spreading
the light of the Gospel wherever people live. With the foundation us
“Protestant Christian Homeschoolers” have, who can imagine the damage we can
inflict on the kingdom of evil?



On Life and Leadership
May 29, 2006, 2:49 am
Filed under: Warrior

Tonight I went to the wonderful young adults Bible study. Although the study was fruitful, the fellowship afterwards was even more so. Mr. S, the leader, shared much wisdom with me about several topics.
How to tell if you are in God’s Will
God has called us to adversity. His will is difficult, because our flesh does not want to do His will. That internal conflict results in the difficulties we so often experience. Additionally, failures on our part is not cause for discouragement. “The Lord has made everything for its purpose,” even our mistakes. God’s complex ways mean that a mistake by me impacts, positively, many people. I would note an interesting principle learned last fall while observing multiple hurricanes close up and personal: The trees in hurricane-prone areas (such as Miami and Pensacola) held up to significantly stronger waves than the trees in calmer areas (such as Jasper County, TX). The reason, we were told, was the winds and storms developed strength and endurance in the trees. As Chuck Colson remarked, “The higher the winds, the deeper the roots. The longer the winds, the more beautiful the tree will become.”

The psychology of leadership
You cannot become a leader, because a leader is something you are. You do not develop leadership, you are a leader. Good leadership comes from good followship. What many people think of as leadership is actually responsibilities, which come and go and do not define who we are. When given responsibilities to lead a group of people, you are not entering a popularity contest. You need to do what it takes, primarily in setting the example, to gain the respect of your followers. If they respect you, they will want to become like you—like what you are, not what you say. On the flipside, if what you are and what you say are both similar and noble, you will gain their respect. Since the ultimate thing a leader wants is to have his followers follow him, then he needs first to gain and keep their respect. Once he has that, he needs to be sure to follow his authority closely. As he is a good follower, so his followers will become good followers.
This is a profound and often neglected concept in leadership.
If you are a good leader, you will have followers attack you. The attacks are not personal; instead they are merely psychological attempts to reduce “guilt.” The follower wishes to be like you but is experiencing difficulty in achieving that. To reduce the pain/pity/guilt, he or she attacks you, attempting to mentally denigrate you. By lowering you, they feel less bad about not being like you.
Again, this is a profound and highly applicable concept rarely discussed. And it applies to more than the obvious positional leadership. It applies to any situation where you are a leader—relationships, counseling, etc.



Importance of Ministry
May 28, 2006, 2:38 am
Filed under: Warrior

Importance of Ministry

  1. We were given a ministry:

2 Corinthians 5:17-20a: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us.
It is our duty, then, since we were saved, to share God’s message, his appeal, the gospel with others. God’s goal of reconciling the world to himself becomes our goal: To “ooze” the gospel. We were entrusted with this task. What are we going to do with it? We must beware to not be like the worthless servant in the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30).

  1. Because of the Final Judgment

Matthew 25:31-46 emphasizes the importance of charitable ministry: feeding the poor, clothing the destitute, visiting the sick, going to prisons. Not what we might think of as active, frontline, evangelistic ministry but nonetheless very important.

  1. To guard our hearts

This is a complex line of reasoning so hang on:
Proverbs 4:23 commands us to “Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flows the springs of life.” This has the connotation of diligently guarding our hearts or working hard to watch out where our hearts are. Matthew 6:21 delineates that “…where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 12:33-37, especially verse 35, emphasizes “The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil.”
Essentially, there is a twofold cause-effect relationship going on here: First, investing our treasure is placing our heart; second, placing our heart is determining the fruit of our lives. Logically, this means that the quality of our fruit is in large part determined by where we invest our treasure (anything of value; time, money, possessions, speech, etc.). For example, if we invest our treasure in the world—spending money on “toys”, spending time on worldly entertainment or fashions, etc.—then we will have worldly fruit and will not inherit the kingdom of God. Paul lists the fruits of the world as: “Sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and this like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21) On the other hand, if we invest our treasure eternally—giving money to the poor, spending time witnessing, etc.—we will develop Godly fruit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.)
The case of the rich young ruler in Matthew 19:16-30 is an example of how to invest our treasure eternally. In verse 21, Christ commands this man to “…go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven…”
Obviously, the ministry of charity is an easily identifiable way to invest in eternity, and thus ensure that we our keeping our hearts with all vigilance.



Exciting Insights and Wonderful Times
April 22, 2006, 1:28 am
Filed under: Warrior

The past month has both been insanely busy and incredibly blessed.
I finished Fire Academy and we all passed the big test for my International
Firefighter I and II, Hazardous Materials Awareness and Hazardous Materials
Operations. With that load off our back we jumped into the exciting field of
Technical Rescue. So far we have done Intermediate High Angle and Confined
Space Rescue.
Intermediate High Angle significantly exceeded the Technician competency level
and included advanced training in rope rescue in all situations–building
collapse, cliffs, rocks, boulder fields, and slopes. The best part of this
class was our trip to Arkansas where we did many different actual scenarios
on real, big, rocky cliffs. We also got to do some exciting rock climbing on
routes ranging from 5.8 to 5.10! This class was extremely fun and useful.
Our Confined Space Rescue training places us between the Operations and
Technician levels for rescues in confined spaces (places with narrow
openings, many potential hazards, and not intended for normal use—tanks,
silos, hoppers, sewers, etc.). We learned about the many hazards and then did
some exciting practicals to round out this class.

While my training has been wonderful, it has been surpassed by the awesome
times I have had with my God. He has opened up the windows of heaven and
filled me with an enveloping joy and delight in His Awesomeness.
The Lord opened up a major door for me this summer through Col. Tanner, who
asked me to lead the QUEST program July 10-August 4. This very much fits in
with my life purpose and vision, and I am excited about the impact it will
have.
I asked the Lord for some specific guidance/promises for my summer, and He
gave me these:
“Do not lay up treasures for yourself on earth, where moth and rust corrupt
and thieves break in and steal, but lay up treasure for yourself in
heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Mat
6:19-21).
“Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things
will be added unto you.” (Mat 6:33)
Also, 1 Timothy 2:1-7, which I don’t have memorized.
These were exciting!
My God is great! You should meet Him!

Corporal Samuel Kordik
International ALERT Academy
Big Sandy, TX



Thoughts for the New Year
January 2, 2006, 10:51 pm
Filed under: Warrior

So I went to Starbucks on New Year’s Eve, read the Bible and prayed for the New Year.
It was fascinating to read my journal for the last year; I dealt with only a few really major problems all year, and God was extremely good to me. His blessings have been many.
As I was reading the Bible, God gave me a rhema:
"And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God."
(Phillipians 1:9-11).

So, my focus for the year is "Love" (a bit unexpected, but I can see how much I need to develop selfless love in my life. It actually is the root behind some of my biggest problems).