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Articles written by Rick Koole


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  • The Thief on the Cross

    Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Mar 21, 2024

    Much of the world will take time to celebrate Easter and the resurrection of Jesus Sunday, March 31. When Jesus was crucified on the Friday before the resurrection, he was not alone; two other men hung next to him. One of them is commonly called “The Thief on the Cross,” and I’d like to share his story. I was at a banquet in Michigan when the speaker, Josh McDowell, a famous Christian author, spoke for the first time publicly about the sexual abuse he had suffered betwe...

  • The history of Valentine's Day

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Feb 9, 2024

    In a few days, it’ll be Feb. 14, or as most of us know it, Valentine’s Day. Do you still remember Valentine’s Days when you were in elementary school? I remember vividly the night before when I had to sign and address Valentine’s cards for each student in my class. And as we’ve grown older, we continue to give Valentines to the special people in our lives. Let me share some history that most are unaware of regarding how we got Valentine’s Day and why it’s celebrated on...

  • Your priorities for 2024

    Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Jan 4, 2024

    As we start a new year, let me remind you of one of the best loved passages in the Bible. It is the opening part of the Sermon on the Mount. In his opening, Jesus shared what we call the Beatitudes. They give some excellent guidelines for us to follow as we determine what our priorities should be in this new year. Following are the Beatitudes along with some thoughts from me. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed is the person who has a...

  • Who was that baby?

    Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Dec 21, 2023

    Who was that baby born 2,000 years ago in an obscure manger in Bethlehem? That’s really the most important question people should be asking as much of the world prepares to celebrate Christmas in honor of his birth. We call the baby Jesus; however, 700 years before the baby’s birth, the prophet Isaiah shared some additional names that describe some important attributes of that tiny baby. “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon his...

  • Understanding your man

    Rick Koole, Special to Village News|Updated Nov 1, 2023

    Among the many differences between young girls and young boys is what they daydream about becoming when they grow up. By-and-large young girls dream of becoming a princess when they grow up. The Disney song "Someday My Prince Will Come" runs through their minds as they hope that they will someday live happily ever after with him. Young boys have quite different dreams. Most dream of someday becoming an action hero who rescues the princess. It is just one of the many difference...

  • Remember to celebrate Grandparent's Day

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePoint Church|Updated Sep 6, 2023

    Paul Harvey was an unparalleled radio phenomenon. For 57 years from 1951 to 2008 – one year before his death – his broadcasts on ABC News Radio reached as many as 24 million people per week. Paul Harvey News was carried on 1,200 radio stations, 400 American Forces Network stations and in 300 newspapers. While in college, I loved to hear his “News and Comment” as well as his famous “The Rest of the Story” segments. Paul Harvey was also a writer who famously wrote “A Letter to M...

  • Training up a child

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Jun 14, 2023

    Recently while leading a men’s Bible study, I mentioned a verse that says, Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Immediately, one of the young dads in the group expressed his concern that he might be exasperating his children and asked me what some of the ways are that dads risk exasperating their children. Following are some of the things to avoid. Failure to lead by personal example Your kids are w...

  • The Rooster, the rock, and the resurrection

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Apr 6, 2023

    The women sorrowfully approached the tomb where the body of Jesus had been laid. They had been devastated a couple of days earlier when Jesus, whom they all loved, was cruelly crucified. They were about to get another shock as they approached the tomb where his body had been laid. They didn’t know how, but the large stone sealing the tomb had been rolled away. Then as they cautiously entered, they were confronted not by a corpse, but by an angel who proclaimed joyously: “Don’t...

  • Surviving life's storms

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Sep 23, 2022

    I remember as a child reading the “Song of Hiawatha” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Young Hiawatha lived on the shores of Gitche Gumee, which I later learned was the Chippewa word for what is now known as Lake Superior, a lake notorious for its powerful storms. It was 47 years ago that a massive 730-foot-long ocean oar carrier named the Edmund Fitzgerald broke in half and sank during one of Superior’s ferocious storms, taking all of its crew members to a watery death. Speaking...

  • Restoring a friendship

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Aug 24, 2022

    Dr. Rick Koole LifePointe Church In every church I’ve been a part of, there are people carrying hurts that they have suffered from someone else in their own congregation. In many cases, a bitterness developed that has taken the joy out of their life and may have had a negative impact on the whole congregation. This is not something new. In fact, Matthew 18 not only states the problem, but then addresses how to deal with the situation. It’s my opinion that if Matthew 18 is fol...

  • Controlling your anger

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Mar 17, 2022

    Tempers are no laughing matter. We’ve all seen the long-term damage that can be done when harsh and hurtful words are spoken in a fit of anger. Your spouse, friend, or child may never fully get over what was said. As Maya Angelou put it, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Let me share a couple of verses from the Bible that give timeless guidelines for us to gain victory...

  • Gold, glory, and girls

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Jan 13, 2022

    Years ago, I spoke at a men’s conference where my speech was titled “Gold, Glory, and Girls.” I shared how those three temptations – also known as greed, pride, and lust – have brought down many men in positions of leadership in local churches across the nation. I then went on to share how men can guard themselves from these vulnerabilities, which the Bible refers to as the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. With that in mind, let me share som...

  • Freedom

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Jul 10, 2021

    Having just celebrated the Fourth of July, let's pause to remember there was a reason the founders of our country chose to place the following amendment first among those in the Bill of Rights. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. So many of...

  • A salute to Dads

    Dr. Rick Koole, Special to the Village News|Updated Jun 9, 2021

    Shortly after the Ethiopian Civil War ended in 1991, I flew into Addis Ababa to speak to pastors from around the country. I’ll never forget what I saw on the trip from the airport to the compound where I was to stay; the streets seemed to be filled with dozens of one-legged men walking along the dusty roads. When I asked what had caused this, I was told it was from stepping on landmines during the war. They lacked “minesweepers” to walk before them with the tools to detec...

  • A salute to Mom

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church

    One of the highlights of the month of May is the celebration of Mother’s Day, a day when all children, both young and old, pause to salute one very special person in their lives. With that in mind, I want to share 10 commendations for moms from Proverbs 31, a chapter of the Bible that pays the highest tribute to those privileged to be called a wife and a mother. She has noble character (10) A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. She can b...

  • Ponder the miracles of Easter

    Dr. Rick Koole, Special to the Village News

    Easter is one of the reasons April is such a joyful time of the year. It is a special time when Christians around the world, whether Protestant, Roman Catholic or Orthodox, pause to celebrate Easter and the resurrection of Jesus. The Friday before the resurrection is often referred to as “Good” Friday because Christians believe that through his death, Jesus on that Friday paid the penalty for their sins. Good Friday was also a day when five astonishing miracles occurred. Dar...

  • Why we suffer

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church

    Let me take a few minutes to share a brief answer to the question of why a loving God would allow so much suffering in the world when he says he loves us and has the power to fix things. Careless behavior So much suffering is a direct or indirect result of ill-advised or careless behavior. Examples include: *The individual that smokes despite the clear warnings that cigarette smoking is by far the leading cause of lung cancer. *The student that fails to study and loses the...

  • 'Train Up a Child'

    Dr. Rick Koole, Life Pointe Church

    One of the best-known promises in the Bible is given to parents: "Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not turn from it." (Proverbs 22:6) Dads play such an important role in raising kids and are cautioned against exasperating their children during the training process. "Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." (Ephesians 6:4) Following are some suggestions for dads from both...

  • A time for gratitude

    Dr. Rick Koole, Lifepointe Church

    We have so much to be thankful for, including the fact that 2020 is now in the rearview mirror and we have a brand-new year ahead of us. I’m hoping that 2021 will be a year filled with gratitude and thanksgiving. Speaking of ingratitude, Shakespeare lamented the pain of ungrateful children when he said, “How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is to have a thankless child. Ingratitude, thou marble-headed fiend.” A New York paper devoted many pages over several weeks to printin...

  • How to prevent Christmas burnout

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church

    To be honest with you, for most people, 2020 will be a year they would just as soon forget entirely. Even as you read this, many of you are trying to figure out how you will be able to celebrate Christmas with your family; what with travel restrictions and limits on the number of people allowed in a gathering, there will be lots of cancellations and difficult choices are going to have to be made. For many, even the joy of Christmas has started to evaporate. For others, their...

  • Unexpected opportunities

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church

    The COVID-19 shutdown left so many people in despair. It impacted businesses in the community, children and their parents, churches, older adults and a long list of others. Everyone sympathizes with those who have suffered serious physical, financial and emotional hurts. That being said, the shutdown has in a strange twist given many people a large amount of unexpected free time. How have you been using the unexpected free time? Have you used it to pursue opportunities that...

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    We are a nation of thieves

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church

    In many ways, America is a nation of thieves. Everyone knows about shoplifters. The U.S. catches 4 million each year, but for each one that is caught, 35 get away with it. But employee theft is even worse. Employees take three times as much as the shoplifters. Studies show that 9% of employees steal on a regular basis, and 75% steal to some degree. One of the Ten Commandments was very clear: "You shall not steal." And the Bible told the story of some famous thefts that all...

  • Dealing with anger

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Sep 4, 2020

    It seems as if everyone is angry these days. Whether it is those who are rioting in the streets or those seething quietly on the sidelines, anger is in the air. There is an old proverb that warns about the consequences of anger by reminding us that what is begun in anger will end in shame. Anger has a way of appearing in many forms. I believe there are times when people should be angry over injustices they witness. It’s been referred to as “righteous indignation.” Some areas...

  • Who can you trust?

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Aug 6, 2020

    A number of years ago, on the way to work I would drive past a church that liked to put witty sayings on its sign. Sometimes they were corny, but there was one that really caught my eye. It said, “Get caught in one lie, and a thousand truths will be doubted.” Do you have the reputation of being a teller of the truth? Do people trust what you say? Let’s take a few minutes to examine ways people may be guilty of not being truthful, even though not “technically” telling a...

  • Why we celebrate Independence Day

    Dr. Rick Koole, LifePointe Church|Updated Jul 2, 2020

    As the 4th of July approaches each year, I like to pause and remember all of the freedoms and blessings we enjoy in this, the greatest country in the world. And none of the freedoms is more important than our freedom to worship God according to our own beliefs. Let’s take a moment, with the help of History.com to consider how the commemoration of this special day came about. The 4th of July, also known as Independence Day, was first declared a federal holiday by the U.S. C...

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