Monthly Archives: September 2015

Why God? And Why Now?


Why God?  And Why Now?

Missionary Jim Kilgore


Romans 11:33: “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!”

Some of you right now are hurting. Some of you are struggling with problems and the pressures of everyday life. Some are facing deep-seated fears about the future. Some have recently lost a Family member that you loved dearly. The pain seems almost unbearable at times. You try to remain strong, yet you feel so weak. You wonder how much more you can take. You wonder how much longer you can hang on.

Some begin asking the questions, “Why God? And Why Now? Why does everything seem to be ripping me apart? God, Why me? What have I done that has made you Do these things to me?

In April, I wrote about Devastation: “The News That you NEVER Expected To Hear.” I dealt with our Biblical responses to a tragedy in our lives, and how we might Glorify our Lord in the midst of devastation.

Listen to me very carefully. God NEVER does anything to You; God is always doing things FOR you!  The songwriter reminds us that “God never moves without purpose or plan.”

Ron Hamilton WROTE the song of great encouragement called “Rejoice in the Lord” to those that are wondering Why God? And Why Now?

“God never moves without purpose or plan
When trying His servant and molding a man.
Give thanks to the LORD though your testing seems long;
In darkness, He giveth a song.

I could not see through the shadows ahead;
So I looked at the cross of my Savior instead.
I bowed to the will of the Master that day;
Then peace came, and tears fled away.

Now I can see testing comes from above;
God strengthens His children and purges in love.
My Father knows best, and I trust in His care;
Through purging more fruit I will bear.

O Rejoice in the LORD
He makes no mistake,
He knoweth the end of each path that I take,
For when I am tried
And purified,
I shall come forth as gold.”

By Dr. Ron Hamilton

You might want to read the second part of my April message: “Devastation: The News You NEVER Expected To Hear.”

God and He Alone Knows Why Everything Happens

“And his ways past finding out” (11:33c). Matthew Henry has a helpful word about this. The main things God wants us to know are clear and plain. They are he said, like a highway open for all to travel. But the judgments of his hands are dark and mysterious. That road is closed forever to us.

We must not pry into the mysteries of God but rather bow before him in adoration for things we don’t understand. Then he added this sentence: “God leaves no footprints behind him.” You can’t tell where God has been or where the Almighty is going. He leaves no track or trail that we can follow.

That means that many things will happen in our lives that we simply will not understand. Sickness, violent crimes, sudden financial reversals, divorce, broken dreams, cancer, death. The list is endless and heartbreaking.

If God Had Come To You 17 Years Ago And Said, ‘I’ll Make You A Bargain”

A few years ago Michael Gartner wrote in USA Today about the sudden death of his 17-year-old adopted son Christopher. “He died on Thursday. He was a healthy, robust boy on Tuesday. He got sick on Wednesday. And he died on Thursday.” Then he said, “You would have liked him. Everyone did.” Father and son didn’t look alike at all. Michael Gartner is five-foot-eight and weighs 160. Christopher was close to six-four and weighed around 300 pounds. “He looked like a cement block with a grin.”

He died of a sudden attack of juvenile diabetes. Despite heroic medical efforts and fervent prayers, Christopher was suddenly gone. “It is awful and horrible and sad, and no words can comfort his four grandparents, his brother and sister, his friends or his parents.”

The day after he died, a friend called and said the only thing helped get him through the tragedy was the wise counsel of a good friend. “If God had come to you 17 years ago and said, ‘I’ll make you a bargain. I’ll give you a beautiful, wonderful, happy and healthy kid for 17 years, and then I’ll take him away,’ you would have made that deal in a second.”

“And that was the deal. We just didn’t know the terms,” Michael Gartner said. He’s right. That’s always the deal. And we never know the terms in advance. God gives us life, health, happiness, our children, our friends, and says, “Enjoy it while you can. Someday I will come back for them.” And we never know the terms in advance.

Only God Knows Why Things Happen. Most Of The Time We Can Only Wonder

And even if we knew the Reason God allowed something to happen, other than to conform us to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29), would the explanation satisfy?

I Have Learned Through The Years That I Cannot Live By Explanations, But I Can Live By God’s Promises

Introducing Jim Kilgore Ministries

Assessing and Analyzing Weak Performance

Assessing and Analyzing Weak Performance

 Missionary Jim Kilgore


How many times have the Pastor, Director, or Supervisor agonized over a performance problem in the Church or Business?   During the interview process, all of the questions seemed to be answered correctly;  the attitude seemed to be so positive;  and you were convinced of a solid, “Better than Average” work ethic. 

Yet as time went on you noticed the enthusiasm waning;  the performance objectives simply were not being met;  and you even discovered that this individual was just “putting in their time.”  Yes, they displayed a lot of Activity, yet so little Accomplishment. 

You were at a loss for words.  What has happened, you asked yourself? What started with high expectations has turned into what might become a “Big Bust” if things do not change, and change rather quickly.

Now you find yourself in a quandary.  What shall I do now?  What are the next steps that must be taken?  I do not want to fire this young preacher?  Yet if his performance does not improve, what choice will I have?

These are some fair questions you might be asking, however they are three questions that I have earned from “Experience” to ask, and then prayerfully answer. 

As a leader, you compromise the team by failing to address poor performance. When I noticed someone had developed a pattern of poor work, I would ask the following questions about the individual.  You must as well.

(1)   Are they ‘In Over their Heads’?   If so, TRAINING is the Solution
  • If I determine that someone is, it is ‘over their heads,’ it is at this point that I ask myself the following question.  Are they in this position because it is a matter of ‘Skill or Will?’
  •  If it is a ‘Will’ issue, then I will discipline the individual and provide a development plan to improve performance.  If it is a  ‘Skill’ issue, then I will provide additional training.

(2)   Are they Sitting in the WRONG Seat? If so, TRANSFERRING is the Solution

I ask myself, “Do I have the right person sitting in the wrong seat on the bus?  Someone may have abundant ability, and yet still perform poorly if they are in the wrong position. If this is the case, consider the possibility of transferring them to another role, that may be much better suited to their natural strengths.  Perhaps they are not suited to be your Youth Pastor, but you believe they could perform very well as your Evangelism Pastor.  This is a position you might consider for them, and you might well see them excel.

(3)     Are they Unwilling to Change?    If so, TERMINATION is the Solution

It’s Not Your Job to “Fix” Every Under-performer. This sounds so harsh, but the hardest lesson in leadership for me to accept over the years has been to accept that I could not help everyone to become a top performer.  I could teach, train, coach, motivate, but in some cases, we must finally admit that we made an unwise selection choice. 

Years ago I had inherited a full-time Assistant Pastor that was a definite under-achiever. There is no doubt but that he had the spiritual gifts, talent, and ability to succeed in this position.  However, he simply was not performing well at all.  He would often be at home when he should had been at work.  So I was faced with a critical decision concerning him.

 I was forced to ask each of the above questions, and determined that he possessed  a Will issue rather than a Skill issue.   We needed to move on in different directions, but as friends.

As leaders, we put faith in our people; we care deeply about those in our charge, and we definitely believe in their ability to grow and contribute. For these reasons, we can sometimes be tempted to help under-performers more than is wise. We think that by devoting extra attention to them we can lead them to succeed. However, while we are responsible to them, we aren’t responsible for them. Ultimately, only they can make the changes needed to bring their performance up to a satisfactory level. 


As a Leader, How do you Determine Whether Spending Extra Time Coaching an Under-Performer Will Be Profitable or Pointless?
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