Koinonia Institute continues to build on its aspiration to “equip the saints for the work of the ministry.” This commitment is reflected in its current mission statement: “Koinonia Institute is dedicated to training and equipping the serious Christian for ministry in today’s world.” Dr. Missler writes in the introduction of the 2017 KI Handbook, “(Koinonia Institute offers) an opportunity to ‘bloom where you are planted’ by studying the Bible — and related topics — in virtual classrooms on the Internet, while discovering the unique calling on your own life and preparing for the challenges that will inevitably emerge on your personal horizon.” (bold-face added)
Peter exhorted his readers, “So then … be all the more eager to make your calling and election certain, for if you keep on doing this you will never fail.” The verse establishes a singular purpose, a strategic preparation and a sustaining perseverance for all believers who answer the call.
This is not to suggest that there is only one task to which we each are called. Instead, I stand for the notion that there is a task for which we are uniquely assigned. KI members’ participation in God’s Big Plan ranges from greeting people at churches to volunteering in KI classrooms to establishing orphanages throughout the world. The Parable of the Talents demands a return for God and His kingdom commensurate with the resources He has bestowed on each of us. Dr. Missler often exhorts his listeners to “fix your report card” while there is still time and I submit the time is now.
Paul spent time in Arabia preparing for his redoubtable ministry. Moses went to Midian for forty years before being “recalled” to deliver God’s people out of Egypt! Throughout our thirty years of marriage, my wife often reminds me during those headwinds experienced by every minister, “It’s all preparation!” “For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.”
“And Jesus said unto him, no man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” Remember Lot’s wife — YIKES! When you are single-minded on the task God sets before you, “you will never fail!” (I recommend a reading and reflection on Ephesians 6:10–20 when you are done with this Personal Update!)
The KI staff continues to assess and to address how to improve our “equipping of the saints” through education and encouragement. New curriculum and courseware are being recommended, refined and realized as staff and members work together to “shine up the KI apple,” invoking that familiar fruity educational icon. What follows is our reboot of the Volunteering, Practicum and K-Credit programs beginning June 1, 2017.
Volunteers serve KI at the direction of a KI staff or coordinator to complete tasks in support of KI programs and initiatives. Volunteers generally must hold at least a Bronze medallion and continue in faithful service in their volunteer role.
There are four main categories of volunteers:
- Classroom Volunteer – Called Student Assistant (formerly Teaching Assistant) each “SA” assists students to get the most out of each class. The SA’s serve under the Student Assistant Coordinator or “SACO” (formerly TACO) and eligibility to serve for certain courses includes successful completion of that course as a student. Active TA’s and the TACO will be converted to an SA and SACO on June 1.
- Community Volunteer – Called Regional Assistants (formerly Deputy Provost) these volunteers assist KI and its members in and around the regions in which they have influence. Rather than establish firm boundaries along state or national borders, this new implementation will have volunteers bring KI to the region of influence God provides. Active DP’s and AR’s will be converted to an RA on June 1. One RA will serve as the Regional Assistant Coordinator or RACO.
- Conference Volunteer – This is at present untitled and unassigned. These volunteers assist as needed at KI sponsored and endorsed conferences, particularly our annual Strategic Perspectives Conference in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. More information on how to volunteer for a KI Conference will be available as each conference approaches.
- Content Volunteer – This is an invitation-only opportunity to contribute to the KI content – articles, products, etc. – and it is included here for completeness. Generally, this applies to members holding Silver or Gold medallions with specialized expertise in an area which KI is developing. KI staff will contact members directly when this opportunity arises.
For more information regarding volunteering or to volunteer, contact the volunteer coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Practicums recognize service for God and His Kingdom, not for KI. Churches, missions, small group leaders, benevolence and a host of other ministries qualify for practicums. Practicums are submitted through the members CAP by clicking on the “Service Practicum (formerly Koinonos Practicum) link. There is no change to the practicum process as a part of this transition. For more information on practicums, contact the practicum coordinator at email@example.com.
Koinonia Institute recognizes service to KI (the volunteers) and service to God’s Kingdom (the practicums) by awarding K-Credits. 10,000 K-credits are required to qualify for a Silver Medallion and 30,000 K-credits are needed for a Gold Medallion. Volunteers are automatically awarded K-credits based on a schedule for the various titles and tasks completed. Practicums are awarded K-Credits based on a formula which generally awards 20 K-credits for each hour of service claimed in the practicum submission. And there are ad hoc awards for special service projects, including conference and content volunteering.
So, there you have it in a nutshell. God calls. Koinonia Institute equips. Members volunteer. Members serve. K-Credits are awarded. And most importantly, God is glorified and disciples are made. Let’s invoke a familiar message from Dr. Missler:
Question #1: How many of you are in the full-time ministry? (A few hands go up.)
Question #2: How many of you are saved? (A lot of hands go up.)
Question #3: How many of you are in the full-time ministry whether you have stepped up or not?
Koinonia Institute is ready to partner with you and with the Holy Spirit to equip the serious Christians for the ministries to which God is calling us. We hope to hear from you soon.
Ephesians 4:12 ↩
https:/ki.studycenter.com/resources/KI_Handbook.pdf Section 1.2 ↩
2 Peter 1:10 International Standard Version ↩
See footnote 3 ↩
Let me take this opportunity to thank Sally Ilko for her tireless service to KI and for her faithful example of godly service. Bless you our dear sister! ↩