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2018…A Year For Breakthrough

Cindy and I want to wish all of you a very blessed and joy-filled new year. We believe that this is going to be a year of great breakthrough for many. No matter our past challenges or struggles—God is good and as we seek Him let us believe and expect breakthrough.

Here is one of our favorite Oswald Chambers devotional nuggets—Hope it blesses you:

You shall not go out with haste, … for the Lord will go before you, and the God of Israel will be your rear guard. Isa 52:12

As we go forth into the coming year, let it not be in the haste of impetuous, forgetful delight, nor with the quickness of impulsive thoughtlessness. But let us go out with the patient power of knowing that the God of Israel will go before us. Our yesterdays hold broken and irreversible things for us. It is true that we have lost opportunities that will never return, but God can transform this destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. Let the past rest, but let it rest in the sweet embrace of Christ.
Leave the broken, irreversible past in His hands, and step out into the invincible future with Him.
 -Oswald Chambers

2017 was an exciting year for On Target Ministries and the D’Acchioli family personally. On the personal side, with our transition to Temecula concluded I am weighing numerous opportunities to work with Churches and ministry organizations to do some side consulting and coaching. Cindy and I are also preparing to launch a midweek home group to learn and grow together.

On the ministry front things are progressing. We are very close to funding the last piece of our Men On Target Curriculum by producing a high quality workbook for participants. The 60 programs now completed are already getting wonderful reviews.

Here is just one of many testimonies from our TV broadcast last year on the NRB Network:

Your ministry has been a Godsend. I am recently unemployed and your ministry has given me great encouragement during this time. The insights God has gifted you with are life changing and I want to encourage you that your testimony is inspiring, so keep sharing.

I watch the show with my wife and though it is geared to men she gets a lot too. I look forward to sharing these videos with the Men’s ministry in Philly. Thanks for the work you do, and please pray I find employment soon. Be blessed and feel free to contact me. I praise God the NRB has you on!

It should be clear to everyone that 2017 was an important year for our nation and the body of Christ as well. With the ushering in of a new President and numerous important political appointments that will determine the trajectory of our nation for many years, perhaps decades to come, now is not the time for complacency. As Christians entering this important time we MUST have the proper perspective—God’s perspective. We must take our responsibility to live our lives in an exemplary way in order to present a positive witness and increase the intensity of our prayers.

Remember that our battle is not with people, no matter their political positions or worldviews—rather—it is with the devil himself and the plans he has to steal, kill and destroy.

With that in mind I want to close with the same important challenge for all of us that I gave last year. Make a determined effort—not resolution—to become the person you know that God is calling you to be. Friends, this is not rocket science. Most of us know full well what God wants us to do but our own stubbornness and the temptations of the world are standing in the way. We MUST NOT allow that to happen—the stakes are too high.

In closing let me say how much Cindy and I appreciate your generous donations to our ministry. We have just signed up for Amazon Smile, which allows all of our supporters to continue giving every time you make an Amazon purchase. All you have to do is click here to be taken to a page that allows you to designate our ministry as your “ministry of choice” to receive a small percentage of everything you purchase. It costs you nothing and if enough people sign up, it could really benefit OTM. Thanks so much for considering this option.

Cindy and I want you to know how much we love and appreciate all you do for our ministry.

Helping men become Fully Alive—the man God intended,


Vince

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Oh Come Let Us Adore Him


Cindy D’Acchioli

O come let us adore Him. These words continue to resound in my heart this Christmas season. 

One of my earliest childhood memories that come to mind is the familiar Bible story of the three wise men making their long journey to Bethlehem to find the infant King that first Christmas long ago.

They were Magi, descendants of the Chaldeans spoken of by the prophet Daniel.  They were the astrologers and astronomers of their day; unbelievers at best, committed to searching the heavens for signs foretelling the destiny of nations.  Regarded with awe and fear, these men were paid handsomely to know when something important was about to happen, to discern the present or supervise at the coronation of a king. 

They were Magi, descendants of the 
Chaldeans spoken of by the prophet Daniel

For God to get their attention would be no easy task. But He did.  And whether the bright light they saw at helical rise was a miracle appearance or a natural conjunction of stars or planets is of little consequence.  For it was God, who had created the vault of heaven and all its stars that had provided the revelation that was to drive these men to Israel in search of a newborn king.

This star was mentioned in Numbers 24:17 when a traveling soothsayer named Balaam prophesied “I see Him, but not now; I behold Him, but not near; A Star shall come out of Jacob, a Scepter shall rise out of Israel, and batter the brow of Moab, and destroy all the sons of tumult”. Genesis 49:10 also reference a “Scepter”. Balaam more than likely was an ancestor to the Babylonian wise men of Daniel’s time.

These wise men would have known of this prophecy and many others from the Old Testament by hearing them from Daniel in Babylon during the time they consulted with the kings.

Few or many, these powerful men left their ease and traveled to Jerusalem to find the one born “King of the Jews”.  It just made sense to head to Israel’s crown city in search of a king. It is obvious they did not know of the prophecy in Micah 5:2 or they would have known the exact location of His birth was to be in Bethlehem. They wouldn’t have had to receive these prophecies from the chief priests and scribes in Jerusalem. Their natural inclination would be to talk to King Herod.  But instead of getting excited, Herod sent them to find the baby as he began to hatch a plot to kill hundreds of male infants in hopes of safeguarding his own position.

Yet, the Magi would not be deterred.  How long it took for them to find Jesus is hard to say, but it is a good guess that from the time they left their homes until the time they stood before the young King could easily have been two to three years.

Now the scriptures tell us they brought three notable gifts: gold, frankincense and myrrh. These three precious offerings were the tools of their trade. They were the most valuable items they possessed. But even with all their knowledge and worldly acclaim they could have hardly known that these gifts would play a greater role in the Savior’s life and death.

Gold was a gift reserved for royalty.  Frankincense was a costly & rare commodity, used on the Altar of Incense that when burned gave off a sweet smelling white smoke.  The Myrrh, oh the myrrh, seemingly the oddest of gifts would be the very fragrant and valuable oil that would be used at his burial.

But there is yet one more gift we often miss.  It is the utmost gift of all.  It is the gift of worship. The scriptures tell us the wise men knelt and worshipped Him!  Whether they did this on their own initiative, or the majesty of being in the presence of the King of Kings gave them no choice, they bowed and worshipped.  These wise men from afar came not just to court His favor and to proclaim Him King of the Jews, but they would be proclaiming Him “King of Kings” and “Lord of Lords”

With much love we wish you a most blessed and Merry Christmas,

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Remembering Joy In A Hospital Room Christmas

It was December 2009—many of you I am sure remember. Cindy was in rehab in Denver, Colorado still struggling with her life threatening illness. In fact, it would just be another 6 weeks when the doctors told us she had no chance of survival. Needless to say, we are so grateful for what God has done and the miracle healing process continues to this day.

As I was preparing to write this letter I was reflecting back upon all the wonderful Christmas seasons my family has enjoyed together. All of them, yes, including that memorable hospital room experience, were filled with joy. In fact, joy inexpressible. The reason is simple really—it is because we know what this season is all about and we are so filled with love and appreciation for our glorious Savior. Only this kind of joy can overcome fear and anxiety.

In a few short days I will be flying back to Colorado Springs from our home here in Temecula to be with Cindy and Kristen’s family for Christmas. We are looking forward to another season filled with joy as we celebrate with Mark, Kristen, and our three grandchildren, Hunter, Colton and Kyleigh. We are also looking forward to connecting via FaceTime with Jason, Kim, Parker, Hayden and Brook who will be celebrating in St Charles, IL.

Today, it has been seven years since the Lord brought us through those serious and life-changing experiences with Cindy’s illness. As I look back I can honestly say that the depth of ministry that has happened since then has been amazing. These past seven years have seen countless thousands of people impacted. Many men’s lives transformed, marriages saved and leaders developed.

Cindy and I want you to know two things as we bring this incredible year to a close. First, we are so grateful for your prayers, financial support and belief in our ministry. Without you none of this would have been possible and of course we know that our Lord is at the center of it all.

Next, we want to encourage you to look at this Christmas season with joy no matter your circumstances. I’ll be honest—it took some effort on our family’s part to find joy during our trying time in 2010. But, with God’s help, we found it by pressing into Him. Perhaps this season finds you in a trying situation. Please know that our Lord will never forsake you—He has your back no matter the difficulty.

Set your sites on the promise—the promise that says God always takes the trials in life and turns them around to use them for His good. Dear one please hear me, the depth of ministry we have experienced since our trial is no coincidence—God used that time to break, mold and conform us into new people. People who better understand that we do not control much of anything. He does. I don’t know about you, but for me that is where true peace, and yes, joy, comes from. The knowledge that He is in control—not me.

During this season we pray that the peace and joy of the Lord attend to you and your family in ways you have never experienced.

Finally, a reminder that this is our last letter to you for 2017. As you know, ministries like ours depend very much on strong year-end giving to get through this lean time. As you are considering your final gifts for this year would you please pray about helping On Target Ministry to continue what God has been doing?

Please Click Here To Donate

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace…(and JOY)

Isa 9:6-7

May you experience a blessed and Merry Christmas,

Vince & Cindy

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A THANKSGIVING REMINDER FROM VINCE & CINDY

It was one of those unforgettable moments in early 2010. I was driving to the hospital on my way to visit Cindy ( now there for over three months mostly in a coma). Although I had been processing the whole idea of believing and expecting, I never-the-less went into a period of intense whining at the thought of losing my wife. I am a good whiner—some might say even a professional. It was during a particularly dark time in this lenghty ordeal with my beautiful wife’s life-threatening illness. In the midst of my complaining He spoke. It was a tender voice that I knew immediately was my precious Lord. He said, Vince do you have anything in your life for which you are thankful?

Talk about a change of thought process and direction. I knew this was from our wonderful Savior—the very Person who holds all of our circumstances in the palm of His hand. I immediately went into a chorus of things I was thankful for—here is a partial list as best as I can remember:

I thank you Lord for:

  • The special relationship Cindy and I along with our extended family have with each other and with you
  • For two of the best daughters any dad could ever have
  • Son-in-laws that love you and extend that love to our daughters and five very special grandchildren
  • How you are watching over us and extending a supernatural sense of peace through this process
  • The myriad of friends who have, are, and will continue praying for Cindy through this difficulty
  • The unusual sacrificial giving we have experienced and that our future in this area is truly in your hands
  • The special future you have already planned for us
  • Your incredible outpouring through the ministry you have given Cindy and me and the tens of thousands of lives that have been impacted
  • Who you are—the GREAT I AM

I am pursuaded that one of the very special and pleasing things our Lord experiences happens when we thank Him in the midst of our greatest struggles.

It is a powerful demonstration of taking our focus off of our own pain and letting Him know how much we love Him. It is not always easy, however. The flesh is very powerful and the enemy of our soul is always right there telling us what a victim we are and how God really isn’t around to help.

Perhaps the most powerful and often mentioned ideas in the Bible have to do with this attitude of thankfullness. Everything from numerous thank offerings to expressions of thanks as the people went out praising at the head of the army and gained the benefit of victory. The Bible says that our Lord literally inhabits the praises of His people. I believe He is never closer than when we seek Him in a spirit of thankgsgiving.

May I suggest what could be a powerful take-away for you from this TargetPoint? Sit down and write out your list of things you are thankful for. Then, find a quiet spot and bring them before the Lord in in a posture of thanksgiving. Tell Him how much you love Him for the all the positive stuff. I promise you it is the best medicine for our tendency to whine. It will also give you a more encouraging perspective and engender hope into your circumstance like nothing else you do.

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Another Miracle For Cindy…Amazing Ministry Month

October was one of the most incredible months in our ministry’s history. We had four powerful ministry opportunities and experienced another incredible miracle for my wife, Cindy.

It all began on October 7th. Just back from visiting our kids in the Chicago area I had the pleasure of speaking to the men’s breakfast for Impact Church in Menifee, CA. There were close to 70 men in attendance and I talked about having an intimate relationship with God. Three of the men asked Jesus into their hearts and God moved in an awesome way.

On the 13th Cindy and I, along with our Golden Retriever Beau, drove to Colorado to spend time with our daughter Kristen and her family. This is where the miracle happened. As you may know, we moved from Colorado because Cindy was requiring oxygen assistance at that elevation. Every time we are there she needs to be hooked up to a concentrator. On this trip—the entire time, encompassing three weeks, she has not needed any oxygen. In fact, her oxygen numbers are higher than mine. Her doctor told her that there is no medical reason why she should not be requiring oxygen. The healing of her scarred lungs is another miracle from God that we have been praying for.

On the 22nd I drove to Fort Collins, CO to speak at Clearwater Church. My friend Pastor Randy Kroening asked me to fill in for him at this newly merged congregation. We have had a long history with Randy’s Mountain Life Church going back about 14 years. I was so blessed to speak on Armed…Ready For Battle. It is the story regarding Cindy’s illness back in 2010 and the miracle healing that took place then. It was also very special as many of these precious people were praying for her during that time. An incredible 20 people asked Jesus to be their Lord and Savior.

The big event of the month happened on the 26th when Cindy and I flew to Edmonton, Canada for a three-day marriage conference. NAME Canada, an annual event we have now spoken at three times, hosted the conference and we had five wonderful sessions. My friends, this is the most anointed I’ve seen Cindy in all our years of ministry together. I know that is a bold statement but so true. It’s such a joy and so amazing to sit back and watch the Holy Spirit literally flow through her.

As 20 precious people were ushered into the Kingdom, two couples acknowledged accepting the Lord together. Just before I brought the closing session a woman came to my table in tears. She said her husband was there with her but has never come to a place where he accepted the Lord. She was so frustrated. At the end of my talk I asked again if anyone wanted to ask Jesus into their life. As I looked around, the first man I saw look up at me showed real determination in his eyes—he was saying yes—now is the time. When I saw his wife next to him—her eyes closed—I was filled with joy. It was the woman who came to my table earlier.

It is so special to be able to see God work like this. Sometimes you don’t know that everything you are doing may be for this one special couple—God knows. I am so overwhelmed that he would use us for such special and joyous occasions as this.

Back to Colorado Springs, on the 31st I had the privilege of speaking to about 75 men gathered for an early morning weekly prayer gathering at The Road Church. This awesome ministry, a merger between The Road and Chapel Hills Baptist, has become very special to me. Pastor Steve Holt is a dear friend and this was a great honor and privilege for me. I am seeing great things ahead for him and this growing new congregation.

That same day I flew back to Temecula for some catching up on admin and ministry needs. I will be home for about a week while Cindy is remaining with our daughter Kristen and family in Colorado Springs. I will fly back to Colorado around the 9th of November to drive Cindy home. So, that is it—what an incredible month.

In closing I need to change gears and ask a special favor. Between now and the end of the year we have very little ministry scheduled. I have a couple of important meetings, one with the San Diego Rescue Mission, which could really be important for our future ministry here. Financially however, we are going to be challenged. End of year support is always important for ministries like ours, and this year even more so.

We are thankful that 2018 is already shaping up for our ministry. The first quarter is looking good and we have a big trip to New Zealand for two Promise Keeper events there in August. That is good news indeed but right now we would really appreciate your help.

PLEASE consider a special gift this month to help us. Also, please pray about a generous year-end donation for On Target Ministries.

Cindy and I remain so grateful for you and want you to know that we could never do this without your prayer and financial support.

May God richly bless you,

Vince

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The Manipulation Of The American Mind

Lately I have done some extensive reading and a little research on how whole societies and countries have been overtaken, conquered. In man’s earliest days the methods were always physical. It took massive and well equipped and trained armies—in other words—physical force.

Not so today. The new weapon is persuasion and the tools for this type of takeover are both devious and very sophisticated. If I can persuade you to surrender I have won without any physical effort or cost.

In 1987 Allan Bloom wrote his number one best seller, The Closing Of The American Mind. The subtitle for the twenty five year anniversary addition says, How Higher Education Has Failed Democracy And Impoverished The Souls Of Today’s Students. One of my favorite quotes from this amazing work is, the problem with an open mind is that your brains fall out. Bloom’s criticism revolves around his belief that the “great books” of Western thought have been devalued as a source of wisdom. This would obviously include the Bible. Bloom says The modern liberal philosophy enshrined in the Enlightenment thought of John Locke—that a just society could be based upon self-interest alone, coupled by the emergence of relativism in American thought—has led to this crisis.

Thirty years later we are seeing the results Bloom predicted. How did we get here? Carefully planned and artfully applied MANIPULATION! Now, I know what you are thinking—even a casual leaning in this direction will label me a conspiracy theorist. This label is another calculated strategy to stop any kind of honest effort to uncover the truth. Here is another example—when asked a very logical question regarding what the possible “end game” might be for all of this most will say, I don’t know. Many, including this writer, believe the end game is total takeover—complete control of our nation and the removal of everything we originally stood for. If you openly say this—you are laughed at—again—manipulation.

My friend is it possible that most of what we are seeing and being fed today is carefully choreographed theater designed to manipulate you and me, pawns in the eyes of those perpetrating all of this, into a socially engineered groupthink. Today, virtually every newsworthy major event is viewed by devious people as an opportunity to manipulate the vulnerable masses into a way thinking that will move them closer to seeing their “end game” achieved.

Stop and consider this example for a moment—it has only been in the last 10-15 years the homosexuality has gained the acceptance it now enjoys. How did that happen? Society had to be persuaded that this behavior is not negative or bad by systematically eliminating Biblical claims, basic biology and common sense. Here is the really sad part, in order for people to open themselves to some of these dangerous ideas they need to have their minds purged—the open mind that Bloom talks about has been deliberately produced by most of our modern institutions controlled by big money. Want to know more about the source—follow the money and the ideology of those bankrolling all of this.

Want to test how much purging has happened—I challenge you to interview the average college student and just ask some basic questions about what they believe and how they arrived at that belief—you will be astounded. While at it, ask what they know about American history—our roots. By the way, if you think your kids attending well know Christian schools are insolated from this—think again—they are not.

So, what is the answer? Christian, I am talking now only to you. The battle can only be fought well if we know how to engage and while resisting the temptation to sit back and whine. Here is the starting point:

For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers
and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world … 
Ephesians 6:12

First, recognize that evil exists and is motivated by the devil himself and extended by those willing to submit to his lies. It started as early as the beginning of man—the devil said to Eve, surely God would not… Manipulation, at its root, must have you challenge existing authority or truth. Wherever you turn today—after every national crisis or major event—the manipulators are there with their agenda and sadly many of us are victims. It can sound so right.

Jesus replied, “Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God?   Mark 12:24

Next, challenge every thought, argument and idea with the light of the Word of God. Read and know scripture and use it to reveal what is true and right. One of the biggest challenges I have today is persuading good men who truly desire to have a deeper relationship with God because of their unwillingness to put aside the things of this world. They will say, I want God but I cannot give up the porn, living with another woman out of wedlock, you pick it. The world is winning out because we do not take God’s Word at face value.

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.   2 Chron. 7:14

Finally, and most important of all, PRAY. You were ready for that one I am sure. But let me ask you a question. As much as you might accede to this idea, does your behavior reflect it? Here again is the subtle voice of our enemy—surely nothing will happen as a result of your prayers, God will not listen to you, what good could possibly come…

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.   James 4:7

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Celebration & Mourning – September Update

As I write this newsletter from 30,000 feet I am struck with serious mixed emotions. The tragedy in Las Vegas was horrific and sadly another demonstration of how far we have slid in our culture in large part because of the absence of a focus upon our creator. At the same time I am so grateful for an incredible month where we have had the privilege of ministering the life and love of our wonderful God to so many.

I will have more to share regarding my take on the mass shooting as I am preparing a TargetPoint article titled The Manipulation Of The American Mind. For now, please allow me this brief update for what God has been doing through OTM this past month.

It began at a conference center in Lake Williamson, Il on the weekend of the 15th. Several hundred men gathered for the Midwest Foursquare Men’s Retreat, a gathering I have had the privilege to address several times over the years. There are about 140 churches represented in this district and they are doing a great job of advancing God’s kingdom in this part of our country.

The theme of the conference centered around DESTINY—Our Power, Position and Purpose. What made this event so special for me was the perfect alignment of their theme and the mission of OTM. This is the very center of our sweet spot when it comes to our message.

I talked about our Power is FROM God—our Position is IN God and—our Purpose is FOR God. We had an incredible response from the men. Many left with a new sense of purpose and destiny and a bag with some new and improved tools to discover God’s plan for their life. It was a very special weekend for me as these men also ministered to me in some special ways.

From here I went to the Springfield area to be with my special friend, Tom Cheshire and prepare for my opening session for his Pastor’s Conference the following Tuesday. About 35 pastors and leaders came for a powerful morning of fellowship and teaching. I opened the conference with a message God had been developing in me since I first put the event on my schedule a year ago.

I remember telling Tom that I am more persuaded than ever of the need for our pastors and leaders to be encouraged and better prepared personally and spiritually to serve. I talked honestly with them about the relationship between obedience and power. The centerpiece idea was taken from a famous Oswald Chambers quote that says, God will not do any more through you than you first allow Him to do in you.

In addition I used a lot of personal examples from my own journey to drive some important points home. The BIG takeaways had to do with being more disciplined about getting sin under control and not allowing it to bind us, and then drawing close to God (James 4:8) through daily scheduled times of reading the Word, prayer and worship. I sensed they had a deep appreciation for what I shared.

On a side note please let me say how important it is for us to be in daily prayer for our pastors and spiritual leaders. My friends, they are right there on the front lines taking hits spiritually that you and I may not be experiencing. They are just like you and me—they suffer from the same temptations, frustrations, doubts and misgivings that hit you and me. They need our love and encouragement…often.

On the 21st we had our first Temecula Valley OTI kick off. There were 25 men who came out of the 40 or so on our list. It was a great opening day and our pastor, Britt Sipe, opened us up by praying for our gatherings. I am looking forward to how God is going to grow the men in our group and bring many more into the kingdom. The Men On Target curriculum has become a proven instrument in making disciples over these past 15 years.

Finally, Cindy and I had the privilege of speaking to about 100 women at a MOPS gathering at our church. We talked about the differences between men and women and also gave a brief testimony about the power of letting go. Cindy did an amazing job sharing her heart regarding what God has taught her in this area over the years.

Cindy and I are just traveling back from a week in St Charles, IL with our daughter Kim and her family—a much needed few days away. We will be spending the last half of October in Colorado Springs with our daughter Kristen and family and working out of their home. During that time Cindy and I travel to Edmonton, Canada to speak at the NAME Canada National Marriage Conference.

Pray that Cindy does well with her oxygen needs in Colorado Springs—we are still believing God is going to heal her completely from needing oxygen assistance at that altitude.

Finally, please continue to pray for the families and friends who lost loved ones in Las Vegas. Also pray for the hundreds still recovering from wounds, many who are still critical.

Cindy and I remain so grateful for your prayers and financial support.

May God richly bless you,

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Exciting Fall News from Vince & Cindy

Well, here we are—Labor Day behind us and we are now looking ahead to the fall and winter season and a whole batch of new and exciting opportunities here at On Target Ministries. August was a bittersweet month of transition and getting settled combined with the emotional separation from our kids and their precious families.

Now that we are settled September is looking like a pretty exciting month. On the 21st we are starting up On Target Institute here in the Temecula Valley. It looks like we could begin with 50-100 men. The weekly gatherings will be at our home church, Sunridge Community, on Thursday mornings from 6-7:15. If you are in this area we are still in need of more men who may wish to become small group facilitators. More info available on our site or you can email me directly at vince@otm.co.

We are hoping to get these meetings up on LiveStream soon in order to reengage our international viewing audience. Over the next two weeks we will be advertising our startup throughout the valley with printed cards and handouts.

During the middle of the month I will be traveling to St Louis, MO for a major men’s conference. You can find more info regarding this event at heartlandmen.org. Over the years it has been my privilege to serve this group and the ministry of my friend Les Lee. The theme this year is DESTINY, Our Power Position and Purpose. I am excited about the messages God has given me to bring to this wonderful group of men.

Following this event I will be conducting the opening session at a Pastor Conference for my friend Tom Cheshire. Tom heads up RPM Ministries based out of the Springfield area and puts on several Iron Sharpens Iron conferences around this area each year. This special conference has been a passion of his for some time—an opportunity to give back to the many pastors in this area he has come to know, love and serve. I will be dealing with the subject, The Leaders Personal Preparedness To Serve.

At the end of this month I will be working with the San Diego Rescue Mission to further plan out an OTI startup in their men’s program. It now looks like they are leaning toward Friday mornings for this weekly curriculum. This could be one of the most important and special things I do this year and really needs your prayer support. I cannot think of a more appropriate curriculum for the homeless population.

Some further points for prayer:

  • Setting aside a couple of hours each day to work on a re-write of our original book, Wired To Work and working with Pat McGuire on a new cover and release for later this year or early 2018.
  • Preparing for speaking at the NAME Canada national marriage conference in November in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Our third invitation to bring our couple’s ministry to this wonderful event.
  • Raising funds or grant money to complete our Men On Target manual for our new curriculum. Still needing about $5,000.00 and once raised this resource will be a powerful tool in the hands of our students while becoming a significant funding source for our future.
  • Looking for opportunities to do part time coaching or consulting to help raise additional personal support to lessen the burden on OTM.

Finally, we made it through a difficult summer season with only a 3,000.00 shortfall. This is a bit of a miracle especially without hosting our annual golf fundraiser for the first time. At this time we are still praying for the Lord to release some extra gifts for us this month in order to get back on track.

That said, please pray about an extra special generous donation this month to help.

Cindy and I remain so grateful for your prayers and financial support.

 

May God richly bless you,

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An Important Message for the Senior Pastor


9781424554980I am privileged to join with over forty men’s ministry leaders from around the country in the production of what may be the most significant gathering of best practices for ministry to men to date.  I have co-labored with many of these fine contributors for over 25 years now and respect their work.

My chapter, excerpted below, addresses the Senior Pastor and reflects what I believe is the most important consideration for effective ministry to men.  Copies of this book are now available for sale in our store.

An Important Message for the Senior Pastor
Vince D’Acchioli

Over the past twenty-five years, I’ve put on men’s events in hundreds of churches and spoken at numerous high-profile men’s conferences across North America. Here’s what I’ve learned: meaningful ministry to men cannot evolve from grass-roots efforts. For too long we have ignored the senior pastor and asked lay leaders to move the mountain.

I believe that men’s ministry (i.e., pancake breakfasts, camping trips, PK rallies, ISI events, and the like) can easily be run by lay leaders. However, that is not ministry to men; it is men’s ministry. And there is a big difference.

I have yet to see a truly effective ministry to men where the senior pastor was not fully involved and in charge. In communicating this point, I want to be careful not to take anything away from the talented lay leaders across the country who are doing an incredible job in the area of men’s ministry. Rather, what I would like to focus on is the difference between efficiency and effectiveness.

If ministry to men is defined as bringing men into meaningful relationship with God and developing them into fully devoted followers of Christ who can make a difference in their world, then churches need to move from an event-led ministry into a more intentional, pastor-led ministry. Even in large churches where there are several levels of management, ministry to men should report directly to the senior pastor. This sends a strong message to the whole church about priorities.

Perhaps, just as important is identifying and equipping trustworthy men to be part of the discipling process. Paul lays out the plan, “The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also” (2 Timothy 2:2 TLB). Let’s establish a structure for that strategy.

Picking Your Leaders
Consider God’s order here on planet earth. It flows from God the Father, to Jesus the Son, to the man as the spiritual head of the family, to his wife, and ultimately to their children. Where, in that order, is the first place the church can make an impact? Obviously, it’s with the man. But look at your calendar and annual budget. There’s a good chance you’ll see that there’s much greater investment in youth and women’s ministries than on ministry to men. It seems that we have our ministry priorities out of order.

If you agree, here are some suggestions on how you can move forward. Prayerfully consider two or three, or perhaps in larger churches, as many as eight to ten men you believe possess a level of maturity and a desire to be involved in ministry to men. Call each man individually and ask him if he would consider helping you manage the most important ministry in the church. Invite him into your office for a one-on-one interview.

Treat the interview the way you would if you were hiring an executive staff member. This communicates a level of importance that will stimulate your candidates. Share your passion for ministry, and let them know how you think this is going to impact the church. Give each man a strong vision, and then ask him if he will join the first string.

Once you have your first string in place, ask this group of men to prayerfully consider a list of ten to twenty (depending upon church size) additional men whom they believe carry a passion for ministry to men and have the spiritual maturity to join the next level. Let them know you will be making your own list of candidates as well. Then get your core team together and prayerfully and honestly review these candidates, agreeing on the men you want to invite to the next level.

Use the same formal interview process as before. Again, the idea here is to plant the vision—let them sense your passion as their pastor. You now have a small group of men you can begin calling on for help, and a second level to assist in carrying out the day-to-day management of your new ministry. Together you may want to come up with a name like Men’s Ministry Council, or some other clever means of identification, that will give each team member a sense of being part of something special.

Disciple Your Leaders
It has been said, “We teach what we know but reproduce who we are.” That parallels another quotable truth, “At the end of the day, our ministry is only as good as the hands that extend it.” Your goal with your leadership team is to help them become, to each other first, what they expect to produce in those they will be serving. In other words, practice discipling each other.

Make a concerted effort to meet, at least weekly, with these leaders with a specific agenda in mind:

  • Go through a structured learning system to help these leaders grow spiritually and in their understanding of leadership.
  • Carve out time for prayer and encouragement—get to know and minister to their areas of struggle.
  • Model transparency—they need to see it in you first.
  • Have the difficult conversations with men who are lagging. Ask them to step back in order to grow more before assuming a leadership role.
  • Discover the weaknesses and strengths of your team.
  • Bring strong training resources geared toward developing good group facilitation. On Target Ministries has recently invested a great deal of time and resources, creating and launching a solid video curriculum for this purpose.
  • Develop a plan together, laying out strategies for at least the next year in reaching and discipling men.

Learning from the Past
As you plan your strategies for growing men, many lessons can be learned from the last few decades of what many call the Men’s Ministry Movement. While several high-quality ministries have evolved and the flag has been raised indicating the importance of ministry to men, we have not had the kind of results for which we had hoped. In fact, men in the church may be worse off today than they were when the movement began.

That statement is not meant to be a slam aimed at many fine efforts, but rather, a testimony to the power of our culture to pull men away faster than we are able to engage them in meaningful discipleship. One of the reasons this has happened stems from our unwillingness to strive for and measure the right outcomes. Our tendency to value events and numbers over observable spiritual maturity is at the center of this dilemma.

A word of caution here: Please know I would never say events are bad. Rather, I am saying that we may be eventing men to death. In putting all our eggs in the event basket, we fail to realize that men are rarely experiencing any life-giving transformation. For sure, well-planned events can be a rich, soul-satisfying experience. However, our failure to move men beyond the event and into meaningful, ongoing spiritual development is a significant problem and a lost opportunity.

The question is, why are lives not being transformed? It’s not because events are uninspiring. It’s also not a lack of truth—we have the best truth since Jesus walked our planet. Rather, it’s because we fail to give men what they crave most. It takes a relational environment for truth to become transformational.

Most church-sponsored ministries to men are awkward at creating the kind of life-giving relational environments where we can move that truth from life implication to life application.

Growth through Relationships
Our job as pastors and leaders is to cast the vision, gather the right people to move that vision forward, and measure the right outcomes—spiritual growth, not numerical breadth. Men grow most effectively through an ongoing commitment to a small-group system around some sort of carefully chosen curriculum. At On Target Ministries, we are committing our entire future to the development of this idea with new curriculum and facilitation training.

One of the primary reasons men give up on small groups has to do with poor group management or facilitation. If they see a well-organized plan and that leaders have high expectations, the men will feel cared for and loved. It is also important that your leaders are highly trained, encouraged, and appreciated—remember what the great Oswald Chambers said, “God will not do any more through you than you first allow him to do in you.”

CLICK BELOW LINK FOR CHAPTERS AND AUTHORS
How to Disciple Men – Sample copy

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A COPY OF THIS BOOK

 

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Urgency VS Responsibility

responsibility-2A wakeup call for Christians

Cindy and I just returned from a prayer walk with our dog Beau. As Cindy was praying for many things I softly whispered to God, Lord, please give me a greater sense of urgency for these troubled times we are experiencing. I no sooner got that request set before Him that He responded pretty bluntly. Vince, there is no sense of urgency in My kingdom. I do not want you to have a greater sense of urgency just a deeper understanding of your responsibility.

Wow. This is the second time He has shared with me my need to take the responsibility He has given me more seriously. I admit I am a little slow but I am starting to get it. God is not anxious about the condition of the culture we have created so much as He is seeking to get the attention of many of His followers who have allowed it to happen.

My tendency to lean toward a sense of urgency is motivated by a combination of hearing it from the mouths of other Christian leaders and taking in the sights and sounds being projected by all of the contemporary forms of media, most of which is purposely manipulated. I think the Lord is telling me to keep my eye on the ball and avoid getting deceived. The enemy is hard at work and he is the great deceiver—even of the elect.

As I continued through this morning contemplating all of this my mind flashed back to an experience I had when I was 16. I wrote about this some time ago and it had to do with a meeting I attended of a secret society where I was being initiated. There were about 30-40 of us young new recruits who were asked to go into a room and wait until the program started. What happened in that room was something so deeply etched in my mind that I will never forget it.

The AC was off and it must have been close to 100 degrees. We were in there for an hour at least and several of us near the door were getting angry and yelling at those on the other side who had us locked in. It escalated to the point where once the door opened a violent fight broke out with our captors. There was a stabbing and you could see blood everywhere. Finally it ended, we were all scared and the ambulance carted away the wounded.

Once back in the main auditorium we were now audience members waiting for the leader to speak. There was a heightened sense of fear and anxiety. What I did not notice at the time were about 50 men in black robes standing around the perimeter of the room, my dad one of them, seemingly very calm. When you are anxious the obvious is not considered. Of course we went on to learn that was the purpose of the whole put-on event. It was all a show.

After introducing the well-planted actors they went on to teach us that this was a lesson about how communism works. It only takes a few to mislead the unaware masses.

My friend, this is what is happening in our world today. I am sorry to say that many of us Christians are falling for the trap. We have our eyes on what is being fed to us through our “enlightened” culture filled with an unprecedented ability to communicate. The so-called enlightened culture we have today has produced the darkest world we have ever seen by deliberately choking off the only true light.

The battle lines have never been so clear, resulting in an atmosphere of heightened tensions. In order to hold to their warped worldview, people find they must deny God. Consequently, their actions begin to produce an elevation of anger and violence. Logically, of course, this makes no sense—if there is no God then why should you be angry with someone who believes there is?

If there is no God then why should you be angry with someone who believes there is?

I am persuaded that human beings hold deep within a sense of what is right and wrong. Deep inside their heart there is a sense that something is not right. Maybe it is the awareness of that hole that only God can fill. As a result, the more we try to persuade others of our rightness the more conflicted we become and the obvious outworking of this takes the form of anger, often violent anger. In my early sin-filled life I experienced a lot of this as everything I did seemed to go against the grain of what God intended for me.

So here is our dilemma—how do I as a Christian respond to this? A sense of urgency often ushers in misguided and shallow attempts to make a difference. A deeper understanding of my responsibility, on the other hand, should bring about a more thoughtful and effective approach.

My friend yes, the times are dark and likely to get much darker. It has been predicted after all. As Christians we cannot afford to set aside our responsibility, however. God is calling us to awaken a dead world to the life and love of Jesus—and yes—even if we face persecution for doing so.

I want to address three groups of people with some ideas to consider in light of all that I am saying here:

For Pastors and church leadership:

  • Recognize the extent to which your church and Christian message may be producing cap pistols when the world needs aircraft carriers
  • Stop preaching a watered down version of God’s Word
  • Consider that the number of people who attend your church is NOT an indicator of how BIG (spiritually mature) your church is
  • Quit worrying about who is leaving your church—it is none of your business—your business is to make sure you and Jesus are on the same page.   The rest is His problem not yours—anything less than this is pride
  • Stand firm against the threats of our secular and anti God culture—BE COURAGEOUS!

(On a personal note, I must admit that I have been guilty of violating much of this—it continues to be a temptation)

Amos 5:23-24 Away with your hymns of praise!  They are only noise to my ears.  I will not listen to your music, no matter how lovely it is.  Instead, I want to see a mighty flood of justice, a river of righteous living that will never run dry.

For the Christian:

  • Stop looking for churches that make you feel good
  • Make it a priority to place yourself in environments where your spiritual growth is the number one priority
  • Quit arguing with the world—go deeper with God and He will use you at the proper time
  • Stop watching and listening to most forms of social media and news—the majority of it is designed to mislead you
  • Determine to do whatever it takes to get closer to God—get up earlier and get into that devotional routine you have been putting off
  • Consider starting a small group in your home devoted to growing disciples

Rom. 12:2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is –his good, pleasing and perfect will.

For the non Christian:

  • Please do not close your heart
  • Try to keep an open mind about the existence of a great and mighty God who is crazy about you
  • If you are angry consider where it may be coming from
  • Before you accept anyone’s idea of truth be courageous enough to research and test its validity
  • Quit exposing yourself to information and books that already support your ideas and start looking at the other side—there is nothing more frustrating than talking to someone who has never exposed themselves to opposing views
  • Walk away from people who are overly critical and judgmental
  • Find a church that only teaches the unadulterated truth of the Bible and where you sense that you are loved no matter what

Eph. 1:18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints…

 

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NEW BEGINNINGS (Exciting August Update)

4C7F43FD-8A3F-4E03-858A-B988D0B7E8FC 2For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. Ps 30:5

I thought of the above verse the other day as I experienced an extensive time of weeping. It was that time—that inevitable day when Cindy and I would come to realize our transition is complete. Our daughter Kim’s family here in Temecula just moved to Illinois. Our daughter Kris’s family, from Colorado Springs, have just concluded a two week stay here helping us unpack and culminating with an amazing Hawaii get away and just went back home to Colorado.

For the first time in our 52 years of marriage we are not living near any of our kids. To some families this is not an issue—not so with us. For whatever reason we find it very hard not being near our loved ones.   Perhaps it is the way we were raised and a holdover from another era. Whatever the reason, this adjustment is hard.

In addition, we are also seeking the Lord for what the next season of our life and ministry will look like and desperately pursuing His will. Ps 30:5 has become my anchor here—we are moving from mourning to morning. Navigating from a time of deep anguish and uncertainty to a new season of rejoicing promised by God. I can tell you this, at no time in our life together have Cindy and I been more in love with Jesus. I cannot imagine encountering many of the challenges and transitions we have experienced without His tender hand guiding us.

Now, here we are, setting up our new in home office, positioning furniture, hanging pictures and daily spending time seeking His call for this next season. Honestly, we really do believe the best for us personally and for On Target Ministries is yet to come. We are persuaded that rejoicing is close at hand.

On the ministry front I am busy researching and planning for the future—here is a list of current activities that we would love your prayers and financial support for:

  • Had first leader meeting to begin training for our mid September start up of On Target Institute here for the Temecula Valley. We already have over 60 men who have expressed an interest in attending even without a major local marketing push.
  • Setting aside a couple of hours each day to work on a re-write of our original book, Wired To Work and working with Pat McGuire on a new cover and release for later this year or early 2018.
  • Preparing to work with the San Diego Rescue Mission to fire up a weekly men’s gathering there for about 150 homeless men in their program—a great honor and very excited to see how our curriculum will resonate.
  • Preparing for speaking at the NAME Canada national marriage conference this fall in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Our third invitation to bring our couples ministry to this wonderful event.
  • Raising funds or grant money to complete our Men On Target manual for our new curriculum. Still needing about $5,000.00 and once raised this resource will be a powerful tool in the hands of our students while becoming a significant funding source for our future.
  • Looking for opportunities to do part time coaching or consulting to help raise additional personal support to lessen the burden on OTM.

I want to also say that 2018 is already shaping up to be an exciting year. Promise Keepers New Zealand is planning a 2-4 week trip for us to conduct a couple of major events and church services. They are also looking to help us extend this trip by serving PK Australia while we are there.

Finally, another reminder that summer is upon us and most know that ministries really do need extra support for these lean months. That is certainly the case with us. Our situation is also a bit more serious as the relocation has interrupted our ability to put on the annual golf fundraiser we have benefitted by for the last 24 years.

That said, please pray about an extra special generous donation this month to help.

Cindy and I remain so grateful for your prayers and financial support.

 

May God richly bless you,

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Exciting July 2017 News And Move Update

otileaderphotoJune was a wonderful month here in Temecula. It began with our incredible trip to Eureka, California that we shared with you in our last letter. We are so grateful for all that God continues to do in and through our ministry. So many lives, marriages and leaders are being impacted.

On Fathers Day I had the privilege of speaking at our home church, Sunridge Community, here in Temecula. Our pastor, Britt Sipe, asked me to speak and also communicate the launch of our On Target Institute here in the Fall. This was my second opportunity to speak to this congregation of very special people.

My challenge on this special day was to minister some powerful nuggets of truth while at the same time advertising our OTI launch and getting some men to sign up. I was able to share all the wonderful things God had done through OTI in Colorado Springs over the years. Literally thousands of men and marriages impacted and many first time commitments to surrender to Jesus have resulted from this effort.

I was also able to minister two important nuggets, or takeaways. First, the importance of establishing a daily habit of being in God’s Word. I told them how God has been dealing with me in this area and used a number of personal illustrations that I believe encouraged many. A number of people came up to our table later and shared how meaningful the message was to them.

I concluded by talking about the importance of committing to a relational environment in order to truly grow. We unpacked how OTI works, not because of the teachers or even the curriculum as much as the small group dynamic. I shared how critical it is to discover truth—but also the idea that truth must be understood in the context of life-implication and the life-application. Life-application must be processed in a healthy small group setting with other men if there is going to be any long-term benefit.

When I finished I prayed for them and then asked if anyone would like to make a commitment to begin a new daily devotional habit of reading God’s word. I also asked if any would like to use the occasion of this special Fathers Day to ask Jesus to be their Lord and Savior. What happened next was overwhelming—so many responses that we could not count them.

As I surveyed the auditorium I was so blessed to see the hands raised to acknowledge surrender to Jesus. I remember one couple who made this important decision together. There were literally dozens. I never get tired of seeing how powerfully the Holy Spirit works in setting like this. I am also reminded of the importance of prayer for these precious souls to protect them from the enemy’s efforts to thwart all that God did.

Finally, we had about 60 men sign up for our OTI startup. This truly exceeded our expectations. Now, over the next two months, we will be looking for a dozen or so men who will become our discussion leaders and go through our leadership training series. I anticipate our training in the month of August and the weekly gatherings to start sometime in September. We are also looking into rebooting our LiveStream efforts to make this available over the Internet around the world.

On a personal note we want you to know where we are regarding our move. This week we are literally helping our daughter and her family pack up for their move out to Illinois around the 15th. They move out of their house on the 10th and we move in our furniture in rout from Colorado Springs on the 11th. Needless to say—we need a lot of help and prayer support—a very hectic time as any of you who have moved would know.

On July 3rd Cindy and I along with Jason and Kim celebrated our anniversaries. Number 52 for us and 24 for our kids. We enjoyed a very special dinner on the beach in Carlsbad with some friends and took in a beautiful sunset. A fitting and relaxing time just before the fireworks began.

Please pray for us through this transition and settling in time. We have to navigate all of this and still manage the ongoing needs of On Target Ministries. It is also summer—and most of you know that finances during this time can be tight as ministry events typically start up again in September. Please also pray for special gifts to come in during this season.

Cindy and I want you to know how much we love and appreciate all you do for us—you are the best.

May God richly bless you as we continue to partner together for the souls of men,

Vince

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A Word For The 2017 Christian High School Grad…And You Too (Dedicated to Parker)

18952829_10213590174454940_5820271217442601577_nAs I was sitting through an incredible high school graduation ceremony the other day I was flooded with two powerful emotions. First, Joseph Parker Butchko is Cindy and my first-born grandson. Hard to imagine we are old enough to be experiencing this, but never been so proud. Incredible memories of watching this fine young man grow up into the strong Christian he has become.

My second emotion was a little more concerning. I could not help thinking about the world he is about to enter and the challenges he will no doubt face as a follower of Christ. My thoughts went back to a conversation we had around our dinner table just the night before. We talked about the difficulty young Christians encounter today in the form of good friends and peers who do not truly understand the proper Christian world-view.

Many of these young people, while well intentioned, do not possess a realistic understanding of what God’s Word reveals about life. They have bought into a world-view shaped more by their current circumstances, the opinions of other people they may respect or trust and perhaps most significantly, the attitudes of the popular culture of today. As a result, they tend to discount the Bible’s absolutes. A quote I just put on my FaceBook feed perhaps says it best, Absence of a true understanding of “the God who is” will always lead to the pursuit of “a god that you want”.

The ceremony we experienced on this day was exceptional. Linfield Christian School is a strong Bible teaching and believing environment dedicated to building young men and women who will be people of Godly character. The Headmaster who gave the Charge said it best, you need to be Christians who will be salty and bright representatives of Jesus in today’s world.

As I sat through the ceremony I pondered what I could tell my grandson that would truly condense my advice to him during this important transition. Two powerful ideas came to me—always love people and never compromise God’s word. While I am persuaded that all graduates who profess to be followers of Christ need to hear this, I am equally convinced there is something here for all of us. Let me explain further.

First, Always love people. No matter who they are, where they have been, what they have done, how they believe or think, ALL people. If there is any one idea that exemplifies what Jesus teaches through His word it is this. We are called to love people like He loved them, unconditionally. The awkwardness we face today is born out the lie that says, you cannot really love me unless you except everything I believe and do.

Dear Christian graduate, please hear me, avoid this trap. You can stand for what the Bible teaches and still love those who do not. As I close in a moment I will give you some practical tips that might help you in this area.

Second and most important, never compromise God’s word. This means that you cannot attempt to water down what Jesus teaches in order to appear more hip or with it. To do so puts you into the category of pursuing a god you want at the exclusion of the God who is. This too is a very dangerous trap and one that far too many who call themselves Christians have fallen into.

Here is the caveat, your ability to not compromise God’s word and be accepted for it is made much easier when you treat people with love in the first place. In other words, the latter, never compromise God’s word, is best facilitated by the former, always love people.

I want to suggest some practical ideas that may help you as you move forward. Whether you are headed off to college or entering the work world; these ideas can help.

  • Get connected to a small group of like-minded Christians to do life with. This can create a healthy environment where you can share your successes and failures and pick up valuable ideas and prayer support.
  • Consider finding an older person who will commit to being your mentor. Someone who will be there for you, pray for you, and bring correction when necessary.
  • Make sure you stay connected to a strong Bible believing local church and get involved in their ministry.
  • Form good devotional habits—rise as early as needed in order to read the Word, pray and praise God every single morning. THIS IS CRITICAL FOR AN INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.
  • Look for opportunities God may be putting in front of you every day to love others and be a strong witness for Jesus. Every day begin by praying, Lord, do not let me miss the opportunities You may place in front of me today to represent You.

And finally, always remember how special you are to our Lord. He is crazy about you and desires for you to truly become the man or woman He intended.

Eph. 1:11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will…

Jeremiah 29:11For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Eph. 1:18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints…

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June 2016 News From On Target Ministries

sdrm-mf-graduation-jan2017-127First of all, Cindy and I are feeling both very blessed but also exhausted as we just returned from six speaking assignments in two packed days. Our dear friends Jeff and Theresa Kessenich in Eureka, California booked us for a multi-church Couples event where Cindy and I presented our Couples On Target seminar together. This was followed by a leadership workshop where I dealt with the Four Pillars of Leadership and finally, I preached at the Sunday service for the Kessennich’s congregation. God was with us in a powerful way.

Furthermore, at the end of the couple’s event several of the pastors and leaders from this church gathered around Cindy and me to pray over us. I shared our story of transition, a couple of physical issues we were believing healing for and also our serious financial challenges as we conclude our move and enter into the summer months.

Not only were the prayers powerful but they were also prophetic, giving us an opportunity to ponder these things in our hearts. One of the women, who prayed for me specifically, had been dealing with some very broken family issues threatening her marriage. As she prayed she thanked God for all He did to save their situation and asked Him to intercede for us. Here is a person, broken herself, with the God-given sensitivity to ask our Lord to intervene in our circumstances—it was very moving.

A considerable portion of last month I spent visiting various men’s groups meeting around the Temecula Valley to get a sense for what God is doing here. Not only was I impressed with a couple of these groups but was thankful to learn that there are indeed some healthy disciple making gatherings already in place. Right now my pastor, Britt Sipe, and I are planning the Fathers’ Day weekend services for Sunridge Community Church.

Britt and I met recently and are truly enthused and looking forward to this important weekend coming up. Of course, it would not surprise you that I will be speaking at both services on the topic, The Man God Intended. In addition, this will also be the launch weekend announcing our On Target Institute (OTI) gatherings for men beginning this Fall. As you may know, we had upwards of 2-250 men every Thursday morning for many years in Colorado Springs where OTI was tested and refined.

We are asking God and believing for 15-20 men who will come forward for leadership training and many more who wish to attend. The leadership training will go through the summer with an official startup around late August, early September. And finally, we are also planning to get back to LiveStream for these meetings for those who were previously picking it up from around the world. Please stay tuned…

Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support for Cindy and me and what God is doing through On Target Ministries.

May God richly bless you as we continue to partner together for the souls of men,

Vince

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Exciting April 2017 News

c71afdcf-18c4-4ec2-813b-5525fb6148f6An exciting month—the weekend of April 17th I was in Buffalo, New York to speak at an Iron Sharpens Iron Conference. Still fighting a cold, I arrived to discover that the opening plenary speaker was stuck at the Atlanta Airport and would not make it in that evening. Needless to say, we had to make a couple of adjustments. I agreed to open the conference and allow him enough time to get in to close.

The next morning it was obvious that he was not going to make it. The re-routing would have landed him too late to speak. The team there asked if I would also do the close and it was an honor to accept the invitation. So, on that day I opened the conference, conducted a workshop on The Six Structural Elements Of Effective Churches for Senior Pastors and also brought the closing plenary session. I was exhausted but in a very good way.

I opened the conference with Cindy’s incredible story of miraculous healing and ended with our illustration on The Secret To Life. It was very well received and a natural lead-in to the seminar sessions that followed as well as my closing message. I suggested that putting God between us and our circumstances is what we must all do and explained how the upcoming workshops would assist them in carrying that out. I also promised to put an exclamation point on the day with my closing remarks.

In the final session I unpacked some practical ideas on how to have a more intimate relationship with the Lord, the key to putting Him at the forefront. We closed with a prayer over all of the pastors and an altar call. There were about 20 men who made first time commitments—It was an awesome time!

As I headed home to Temecula I had a major physical melt down as my cold flared back up—I refused to let it get me down, however. A couple of days later Cindy, me and our dog, Beau, jumped in our car and set out for Colorado Springs to visit with our daughter and her family for a few weeks. Though Cindy needed to be on oxygen most of the time we truly enjoyed being with Kristen, Mark, Hunter, Colton and little Kyleigh—our five year old granddaughter.

While in Colorado, I also had two days of strategic meetings with Dwight Johnson, Pat McGuire, our producer and my friend Jim Grassi from Men’s Ministry Catalyst out of Post Falls, ID. The purpose of our gathering was to develop ideas on how our ministries might work more closely together moving forward. Jim’s ministry is 36 years old and has had a tremendous impact during that time. We were excited to discover that our working together could be a 2+2=10 kind of equation.

I also had a great time meeting with my friend and Pastor Steve Holt from The Road @ Chapel Hill Church. Chapel Hill Baptist and The Road just merged and it looks like they have an exciting future together. Steve invited me to speak there on my next trip back there in August. Looking forward to my time there at the end of summer.

On our final day Pat McGuire had me come into the studio to produce a half hour TV show interview with Gordon Klingenschmitt on the subject, The Death Of Consensus. It was based upon my last TargetPoint article. If you missed it you can go to http://www.otm.co under the Blog dropdown menu. Just select TargetPoint articles. This turned out to be a powerful show dealing with where we find ourselves today regarding Christianity in America—I encourage you to read the article and stay tuned for a link to the program coming soon.

At the end of this month Cindy and I will be traveling to Eureka, CA to conduct a couples event for my friend, Pastor Jeff Kessenich. Please pray for our trip and that God will show up in a powerful way.

Finally, we still need your financial help at this time critical time. We are getting ready to enter into an agreement with our marketing firm that could take us to a new and exciting level with this ministry. We are in need of raising about 600.00 per month over the next six months to make this a reality. Please pray about helping us.

Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support for Cindy and me and what God is doing through On Target Ministries.

May God richly bless you as we continue to partner together for the souls of men,

Vince

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The Death Of Consensus

hqdefaultImagine this—throughout human history there has existed two streams, the stream of good and the stream of evil. One might say light vs. dark—or God vs. anti God. A well known pastor once concluded that these two streams have been running in opposite directions throughout history at a slow enough speed to allow you and me to have a foot in both of them. I think you get the idea here—this is where so many of us who call ourselves followers of Christ tend to live.

Today we are finding that these streams are no longer slowly meandering. Rather, they are now moving so rapidly on opposite courses that if you try to have a foot in each—you will be torn apart. In other words, the light is becoming brighter and more obvious at the same time as the darkness is becoming more intense. In my lifetime I have never seen this much polarization in our nation. I am convinced that it is going to get substantially worse at a faster pace than we can imagine.

Consider the following list of controversial beliefs in our culture today:

  • Homosexuality is the moral equivalent of heterosexuality and should be celebrated
  • A developing fetus in the womb is not a human being…you can destroy it if you choose
  • Without a single shred of evidence to support the theory of evolution…you accept it as fact
  • With incontrovertible evidence to support that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead…you deny it
  • It is more important to give people who are down-and-out a handout instead of a hand up
  • Mankind is causing global warming and it will inevitably lead to our demise. Though the evidence is inconclusive, those who are skeptical are ignorant
  • We should have open borders and all people should be allowed to enter our country…no restrictions
  • The US constitution should be a fluid document and we should be changing it to better suit the times we live in
  • Racism is the worst it has ever been in our country and the police and white privilege are mostly to blame
  • Socialism is preferable to Capitalism and the government has the answers to most of our problems
  • Islam is a religion of peace
  • All religions are equal and any who claim to possess the “truth” should be condemned as intolerant

If you could use only one word to describe someone who believes in 90 percent of this, what would it be?

I am suggesting this exercise because I think it is time for those of us who are truly Bible believing Christians to get our heads out of the sand. These and many other issues we are facing today are defining the battleground. Consensus on these ideological positions is no longer possible. The enemy of our soul is alive and well among us.

We have allowed our voices to be silenced by those who cleverly define Biblical/moral values as political…they are NOT! We cannot allow this to continue, but I fear we do not know how to stop it. We are awkward and intimidated in our response to a pervasive anti-God culture. So, what does all this mean? What can we take away from this?

Before I suggest what we need to do, let me tell you what we need to avoid. We do not need more Christian apologetics and worldview experts to help us define the problem. While the information is helpful and stirs a lot of emotions, it fails to get to the heart of what is necessary. We also do not need, nor can we tolerate, reluctance on the part of our pastors and leaders to call out sin and anti-Christian sentiment from our political leaders and institutions. Finally, we do not need more Christians getting angry and trying to argue our way through this quagmire. It only pushes people further away.

One of the greatest challenges we face in advancing the message of Jesus Christ in our world today comes from our inability to transition from anger and disgust to love and grace.

Ok, so what is the answer, Vince? Good question! I want to offer my best counsel here with a caveat—I am only a man. I am not God. Please take what I am about to share in a prayerful and measured way.

If you have been following my TargetPoint articles for some time you may recall back in November of 2008 I felt strongly that God gave me a word. In fact there were five words—MY PEOPLE ARE NOT PREPARED! I remember not completely understanding at that time what that meant. It was only a short time later that we experienced one of the worst financial meltdowns in recent history.

I remember how many of God’s people were devastated. Marriages and families were in crisis. We recognized later that very little of this had to do with our circumstances. In fact, all the circumstances did was shine a light on the lack of substance that was there all along. Someone once said, trials in life do not make a person…they reveal them.

Born out of intense personal experience and some hard knocks, I have come to understand what many of you have heard me share as, THE SECRET TO LIFE. If you have watched me speak, you may recall the hand illustration I use to suggest how we place God between ourselves and our circumstances. It is only then that we are able to see our world through His eyes—this is key.

It is not easy, however. I must admit that I am vulnerable to being sucked into the twenty-four hour news cycle with its unending array of hot news flashes. It is obvious that so much of this is embellished to persuade our views and increase ratings. DEAR ONES PLEASE HEAR ME—THERE IS NO WAY FOR ME TO TAKE MY EYES OFF ALL OF THIS UNLESS I PUT MY LORD IN FRONT.

So here is what I want you to consider as a takeaway; in order for us to truly put God between us and our current circumstances…to address where we are today in our world and be in a position to truly make a difference, we need to draw near to Him (James 4:8). There is no other way. God’s word calls us to love Him and each other—the two greatest commandments. Can you imagine how different our world would look if we could accomplish this?

Here are some ideas I would ask you to consider:

  • Stop being a news junkie—you are being manipulated and brainwashed—there is no more objectivity
  • Spend the time you use taking in information from the TV, internet and newspapers and add it up—then determine to use that time to meet with God—reading His word, praying, praising and listening.
  • Bottom line, quit doing 360’s looking for answers—simply lift your head straight up to the Lord of Lords and King of Kings
  • Surround yourself with people who are like minded for encouragement and prayer support—we so desperately need that
  • Start or join a weekly support/accountability group—for men, women or as couples

Consider the giant Sequoia or Redwood Tree, one of the largest living organisms on the planet. They are enormous and strong, but did you know that just one Sequoia or Redwood is incapable of standing on its own? Their very shallow root structure, underground and unseen, is intertwined with their fellow giants. They literally hold each other up.

Dear friends, please understand that the winds of the world are blowing with more force today than at any time in recent history…if you try to go it alone—you will be blown over.

If you are able to do these few simple things I know that God, by His Spirit, will equip you to better navigate and ultimately become the man or woman He intended. It will not be by posturing, arguing or political maneuvering—it will be by His Spirit.

On a personal note, three years ago God impressed upon me the need to spend more time with Him. He told me I was not taking my responsibility as a minister of His word seriously enough. I will never forget that encounter. Since then I have been spending 2-3 hours every morning reading His word, praying, praising and listening. IT HAS CHANGED MY LIFE.

BY THE WAY, GOD HATES CONSENSUS!

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April Exciting News 2017

sdrm-mf-graduation-jan2017-133March was a great ministry month. As we are getting settled here in Temecula we are experiencing God opening up more doors. On the 11th Cindy and I drove to Scottsdale, Arizona for a men’s event we conducted for our friend Pastor Jeff Ruby and Casa De Cristo Lutheran Church. They had a wonderful turn out and we were able to minister a powerful session on Understanding Accountability. I also brought a brief message on a new topic just developed dealing with A Man And His Friends. We had a great time and the men were blessed.

On the 24th I had the privilege of speaking for Promise Keepers New Zealand. They were able to feed a live Skype video to over 50 locations and thousands of men throughout that nation. My topic had to do with overcoming trials and included Cindy’s story of amazing healing and all the lessons God taught us through that challenging time. Here is a link to the actual video they showed. https://vimeo.com/209647122

Here are a few of the actual comments they received:

Powerful message on Trials to Triumphs from Vince D’Acchioli. It was authentic, gritty, and inspirational with spiritual depth. Highly recommended!!  –Justin St. Vincent

This event from Vince was superb. I think that he has hit an area where people get very vulnerable, and his message of not only submitting to God, but looking for what He may teach was powerful and very well communicated.  –Nathan – Inglewood 

There was some quality discussion in my group that really brought out some hidden things.  –Geoff Wiklund

Thanks for the life-changing treat today, with Vince and the PK team  –Jack Ponting

My final event was at our wonderful home church, Sunridge Community. I had the privilege of speaking to about 65 guys who showed up for a basketball tournament. Our Pastor, Britt Sipe, asked me to lead in a brief devotional time before the grunting, pushing and shoving got started. I shared on the two most important life lessons I have encountered over the years and ended with The Secret To Life. If you want to hear that secret you will find it at the end of the video linked earlier.

In all it was a great month and now we are preparing for our next big opportunity to minister in Buffalo, New York this next weekend. This is our major event for April and brings me to the Iron Sharpens Iron (ISI) Conference for my friend Scott Haima. They have asked me to be the closing plenary speaker as well as conduct a seminar for pastors. They are expecting upwards of 700 men to attend and these events are always very special for me.

Also this month, I will be meeting with several key ministry leaders from around the country in Colorado to talk about discovering ways to work together in an effective way to advance our ministries. It’s the old question, what can we do together better than any of us can do alone. This meeting will be taking place on the 19th and 20th in Colorado Springs where Cindy and I are planning to spend a couple of weeks visiting our kids and doing some studio work.

I am working with our producer and board member, Pat McGuire, to produce 30 or so 2-3 minute video blogs that will be distributed through our website and a number of social media channels. We think this may be a great future for us as we try to increase the number of people who might ask us to minister to them on a daily or weekly basis. They would be considered devotionals with a powerful point related in a light, and sometimes humorous, way. Let me know what you think about that. People who know me think it might fit with my strange personality.

Finally, please pray for these up-coming events. Also consider helping us financially. All of the media production we are doing have significant costs. Pat has been very gracious and at times gone over and above in his dedication to getting this stuff out but we need to honor him with what his creativity deserves. We need you to help us in a pay it forward kind of way. This is the idea that what you give helps make these ministry resources available for those who cannot afford them.

Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support for Cindy and me and what God is doing through On Target Ministries.

May God richly bless you as we continue to partner together for the souls of men,

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Attributes Of A Godly Friend

180712_10150097376353598_5937223_nDedicated to the life and memory of Dr. Dan Erickson, my friend 
Vince D’Acchioli

A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.  
                                                           ― William Shakespeare

I am deeply saddened by the loss of my dear friend, Dan Erickson. Were it not for his unconditional love, incredible wisdom, gentle challenges and persistent encouragement, I would not have had the ministry success I experience today. His words to me and probably everyone he ever encountered, you’re the best, reverberate in my soul often and always will.

As you read these five attributes of a friend I know you will be blessed. If you knew Dan you will also see him powerfully as they are unpacked. I pray this blesses you and becomes a challenge toward becoming a better friend.

slide03One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a 
brother.   Proverbs 18:24 (NIV)

The first attribute is Commitment. A Godly friend is there for you no matter the circumstances. They are willing to get up a 3 AM and meet you to talk and work through emergencies. They follow through on their promises. When they tell you they will pray about something—they actually pray. Dan was this kind of friend to so many of us. When he knew I had a struggle he would not only pray and offer wisdom, but he would also pick up the phone and want a report on how I was doing. He did not forget.

slide05Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.  Proverbs 27:5-6 (NIV)

At a time in my ministry where my own pride was threatening to suffocate what God wanted to pour through me Dan not only recognized it but did something about it. I will never forget the occasion when he gently whispered to me, Vince, you know you must descend before you can ascend. I knew what he meant—and he knew I understood what he meant. Humility is what God is looking for in all of us. Dan not only modeled it—he encouraged others to do the same. The occasion I refer to here was a game changer for me and one I will never forget.

slide07Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NIV)

Ok, so if you knew Dan you are saying—no brainer dude—this epitomizes the man. Not only was he famous for the, you’re the best encouragements, he also helped you become better in practical ways. I have witnessed first hand this man humbly taking a back seat and give up the platform because he thought it would be better for someone else.

slide09My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.   John 15:12-13 (NIV)

You ever have someone in your life that you just know would take a bullet for you? Of course you might expect that from a parent or perhaps your grandparents—but a friend? There was no doubt in my mind that Dan was this kind of friend. When you would hang out with him you just knew he had you’re back.

slide11As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17 (NIV)

In Dan’s case it is only fitting that I conclude with this one. Dan was one of the early leaders in the Promise Keeper ministry and was instrumental in brining denominational leaders to the movement. In those days we all remember the phrase taken from our verse…as iron sharpens iron. Dan lived this verse. He believed in the concept that we help each other to grow and that with God’s help and the support of Godly friends, there is nothing we cannot overcome and no limits to what we can accomplish.

Though the loss of my dear friend prompted this message I want you to know that when I recorded this exact program a couple of years ago I actually put it together with Dan as one of my role models. As I conclude I would be remiss if I did not consider what our dear brother would want you to take away from all of this. It would certainly not be a heightened sense of sorrow for him—he is with our Lord now and wearing the crowns brought about by the very attributes he allowed God to work into his life.

Rather, Dan would want each of us to ponder these special qualities and ask ourselves two important questions—one a scale of 1-5:

How would I rate my closest friend(s)?

How would I rate myself as a friend?

Thank you Dan…you truly were and still are, THE BEST.

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GROWING NEW VINES (Finally in Temecula)

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February was a month that will never be forgotten by the D’Acchioli’s. It was the month of transition that we have been anticipating now for over a year. Our home, and the headquarters for On Target Ministries for 25 years in Colorado, finally sold. It was my job to drive back to Colorado from Temecula in order to pack and go through the final closing before heading back to our new home here in California.

To say it was bittersweet would be the understatement of the century. I found myself over several days of packing and cleaning becoming very emotional. Cindy, though not with me for this trip, was experiencing the same thing. I would go from room to room and experience such profound and special memories. At times I would break into tears—not of sadness—but of joy and appreciation for all that God has allowed us to experience in this wonderful home.

What made this special occasion even more exciting was finally meeting the new owners. Cindy and I have been praying for over a year now for God to send just the right family. People who would appreciate some of our memories and look forward to God bringing them some new ones. After signing the final papers I had the opportunity to meet the new owners and take them on a special tour of their new home.

This was such a special time as mom and dad along with four of their five girls were there. The children ranged from two who were in college down to 12 years in age. None of the girls had seen the house yet but were told what rooms they would be in. The excitement on their faces was so special to see. When I told them that Dr. Jim and Shirley Dobson had actually been in their new dining room for dinner they were so blessed. It turns out they are believers and really appreciated the ministry that had gone on there.

As I was leaving I indicated that twenty-five years ago I prayed over this property and established four spiritual pillars. I asked them if they would like to hear more about that and their eyes lit up with excitement. When I finished sharing about the pillars and how they were selected they indicated that they would be praying over them moving forward. Needless to say, I was so thrilled. It was a spiritual confirmation that helped bring closure and a sense of joy to this very impactful move.

So, here we are in Temecula. It now looks like we will be renting our daughter Kim’s home as they set out on a new journey of their own. They are moving to Illinois for a big promotion for Jason. Parker, our oldest grandson will be staying behind and just got accepted to Cal Baptist University. We will have the pleasure of seeing him on many weekends. It is amazing to see how God has orchestrated all of this and we actually end up in a home that Cindy and I just love while at the same time helping our kids.

Cindy and I are truly excited about new doors of opportunity that God is already opening for us personally and for our ministry. We have gone through some pruning indeed but are now seeing some new vines taking shape. My involvement with our new church, Sunridge Community and the San Diego Rescue Mission are but two highlights in a longer list of potential ministry for OTM.

In line with this may we ask you to please pray for our upcoming ministry events. I am going to Scottsdale next week for La Casa De Cristo Church’s men’s event and also conducting a Skype conference call for Promise Keepers, New Zealand on the 24th. After that I am off to Buffalo New York for a major conference for Iron Sharpens Iron (ISI) where I will be bringing a plenary session and special workshop for pastors and leaders.

We are also prepping for our startup OTI weekly meetings here in Temecula and at the rescue mission starting soon. The mission will have about 150 men every week and may be live-streamed for other missions around the country that may wish to participate. Very exciting.

Finally, also pray that the necessary funding comes in for our final product to support the new Men On Target curriculum. Pat McGuire is already working on our manual for this powerful series and we believe it is going to be a very important component, particularly in the mission’s and prison environments.

Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support for Cindy and me and what God is doing through On Target Ministries.

Becoming the man God intended,

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Exciting News Entering 2017 In Temecula

sdrm-mf-graduation-jan2017-127January was such an exciting month. So many things happening here in Temecula. Needless to say, there are still a lot of challenges ahead of us as we seek to get settled in. Cindy and I are now looking at renting for at least six months and maybe a year. We may actually be renting our daughter’s home for a while as they may be transitioning to the Chicago area for an incredible promotion for Jason. We are so proud of him.

I will be back in the Spring’s probably from about the 11th through about the 23rd of February to finish packing up our home and move our furniture into storage. The home actually closes on the 21st. That is a big praise report. While there I am looking forward to connecting with family and some old friends.

On the ministry front—I cannot remember a time in recent history where I have been more optimistic and excited. Our church, Sunridge Community, has asked me to begin our OTI here and make it available for the entire valley to be launched with my speaking on Fathers Day. In addition they are talking to us about doing a Couples On Target Saturday event followed by a 6-week follow up series around Mothers day. They have also graciously donated a beautiful office for me to use.

sdrm-mf-graduation-jan2017-137-mLast week Cindy and I went to the San Diego Rescue Mission where I spoke to their graduation class. Hundreds gathered for this event and God really showed up. I was able to share a great word of encouragement for the graduates as they move on with their lives and discover God’s great vision and plan that lies before them. Cindy and I got to be on the platform and were able to shake the hand of every one of these precious men and women whom God has healed.

The Mission has also asked me to consider doing a live OTI there every Wednesday morning for about 150 men in their program. John Ashmen, who is the head of the Association of Gospel Rescue Missions (AGRM), has suggested that his organization may want to partner with us to make the Wednesday teachings available by LiveStream for other missions through the country who may want to participate.

You may recall that I had the privilege of bringing a keynote message to their convention a few months back where over 1000 leaders gathered in Jacksonville, Florida. I truly love what this group is doing around our nation. As a result of that event there are now a growing number of missions who have adopted our new curriculum for their men’s programs.

One of the things we have learned from our experience rolling out the new curriculum to missions and prisons is the need for a hard copy manual to put in the hands of our participants. Toward that end our producer, Pat McGuire, has designed a wonderful two-part manual that we can produce and make available through print-on-demand. Our current handouts are available on line for each session but must be downloaded individually. The new workbooks will be much better and facilitate students having a resource they can keep with them and use in their devotional time.

This is an area you may want to pray about helping us. We need to raise about 5,000.00 to cover the development cost. If you wish to contribute toward this effort please indicate that along with your donation and we will make sure it is designated toward that project. This is the final piece in the completion of our new Men On Target two-year curriculum.

As you can see, a lot to be thankful for and we are praising God for how He is opening new doors. Here are some areas where we can still use some prayer:

  • Pray that God brings clear direction and peace with regard to our decisions about our temporary living quarters—rent—buy?
  • Pray that doors continue to open here and around the country for expanded ministry opportunity
  • Pray that our OTI efforts at the mission and Sunridge Community Church go well
  • Pray the necessary funding comes in this month to complete workbook production

Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support for Cindy and me and what God is doing through On Target Ministries.

Vince

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The End Of Another Year—The Beginning Of A New And Exciting Season For On Target Ministries And The D’Acchioli’s

 

god-is-doing-a-new-thingCindy and I want to begin by wishing all of you a very happy and blessed New Year filled with joy and great expectation of what God is going to do. Here is an excerpt from Oswald Chambers I just read—I pray it blesses you:

You shall not go out with haste, … for the Lord will go before you, and the God of Israel will be your rear guard. Isa 52:12

As we go forth into the coming year, let it not be in the haste of impetuous, forgetful delight, nor with the quickness of impulsive thoughtlessness. But let us go out with the patient power of knowing that the God of Israel will go before us. Our yesterdays hold broken and irreversible things for us. It is true that we have lost opportunities that will never return, but God can transform this destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. Let the past rest, but let it rest in the sweet embrace of Christ.
Leave the broken, irreversible past in His hands, and step out into the invincible future with Him.
 -Oswald Chambers

Here is an update on our move to Temecula and home sale in Colorado. We are finally under contract and expect to close on our Colorado property February 22nd. That is reason for praise indeed. It has been a longer time then we were anticipating, made more difficult by the challenge of being apart from Cindy for these many months. She has been staying in Temecula at our daughter Kim’s home and feeling great again at sea level.

We decided that I would stay in Colorado for Christmas this year with Kris and Mark and grandkids and she would stay in California with Kim and family so we could be with both! I left right after Christmas and drove with our dog Beau to Temecula. I arrived on December 27th and am now here for good. It is so great to finally be together again. Kim and Jason have graciously extended an invitation to stay with them while we find a home to rent or buy.

On the ministry front there is much going on. We finished up our video curriculum series and also spent some time in the studio last month taping several new series and TV programs. Our internet marketing is going well and we are anticipating some great results soon. We have had around 1,000 people subscribe to our online daily devotional series over the last several months. The feedback so far has been wonderful.

I am in conversations with local leaders to begin our On Target Institute here in the Temecula Valley soon. There does not appear to be anything quite like that here. Our new church home will be Sunridge Community Church and our pastor is a wonderful man who we have come to know and love, Britt Sipe. Britt and I have been talking about using their facility to host our weekly meetings and get back up on LiveStream. If you would like to know more about the ministry at Sunridge please click here.

This month I also have the privilege of speaking at the graduation ceremony for The San Diego Rescue mission and my friend Herb Johnson. Cindy and I were there last year and it was an emotional event that really blessed us. I am looking forward to sharing The Secret To Life with this year’s graduates.

I am also finalizing a chapter that will be included in a new book coming out in a few months from the National Coalition of Ministries to Men (NCMM). As one of the original founding members it is an honor to be asked to contribute. My chapter will be addressed to the “Senior Pastor” and deal with the importance of his role in the effective discipleship of his men. More on this as it develops.

As you continue to hold us up in prayer please ask God to help us find just the right home and continue to open up ministry opportunities for us here in California. Also pray for our 2017 calendar to fill up with events throughout North America.

This is an exciting but challenging time for all of us. As we face the many uncertainties before us let us lift each other up, believing God, taking Him at His Word, being courageous and steadfast in our convictions. Let us move forward this New Year allowing Him to prepare us to be able to stand on the front lines of the battle for our families and our nation!

Finally, Cindy and I want you to know how thankful we are for the generous year-end gifts that come from so many of our faithful partners. Your contributions are so appreciated especially during this challenging time of transition.

Advancing His kingdom together,

Vince

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180 Degree Emotional Swings

2newimg_3644180 degree emotional swings. While our spiritual compass is firmly fixed upon our Lord and Savior, Jesus—our emotions are all over the map. I find myself going from extreme joy to heart wrenching sadness and this may be one of the most challenging newsletters I have ever written. Let me explain:

I received news yesterday that my brother, Ron is in very serious condition as he is battling a rare immune system disease. Needless to say this has become the center of our concerns and the intense focus of our prayers at this time.

At the same time, it looks like we have an offer in hand for the purchase of our home. While we still need to come to terms with the details as they are negotiated, it is good news never-the-less. Whether the sale goes through or not we have made the decision that I need to move to California sometime in January. If the house does not sell Cindy and I will have to seek out temporary living arrangements until it does.

Because of all that is happening it has become impossible to outline a schedule for the next month or two. My brother is in San Jose, California. I am scheduled to fly to Temecula to be with Cindy over the holidays and will leave the 18th of this month and come back to Colorado Jan 3rd. All of this of course is subject to what is happening with Ron and his family. Please pray for me to be everywhere the Lord wants me to be and at the right time.

I have two important assignments here in Colorado Springs next week, also subject to change. I have been asked to preside over a memorial service for one of my closest friends, Bruce Larsen, whose wife has gone home to be with the Lord. I am also speaking at the Men With A Purpose (MWAP) Christmas Luncheon on the 8th. There will be around 200 in attendance and many are some of my closest friends in this community. It will be kind of a farewell address and Christmas devotional all rolled together.

img_0162On the extreme joy side, I just returned from a ministry trip to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada where I spoke at a men’s gathering and three church services for Beulah Alliance Church. This is one of the largest congregations in Canada. There were close to 400 men at the breakfast on Saturday morning where I talked about the importance of an intimate relationship with our Lord. Over 30 men gave their hearts to Jesus. It was an overwhelming experience and you could feel the presence of the Lord in that auditorium.

The weekend services ministered to thousands across two campuses and the feedback from many was amazing. I spoke on the topic, Facing The Unexpected as the concluding message in a series their Pastor started titled, Insomnia…What Keeps You Up At Night? I shared Cindy’s story and all that God taught us as we navigated our deep trial back in 2010. You can watch the message here. Cindy opened the service with prayer through my cellphone, which was so very special as they had our picture up on the big screens.

As you can see there is a lot happening and still so much to see God unpack in these days and weeks ahead.

This year, because of all the uncertainty and extra costs associated with relocating the ministry, we have some very challenging financial needs. December is the month where many ministries depend on special year-end giving to get into the new season. For as long as we have been in ministry we have been so blessed by your generous December gifts.

Please pray for us, Ron and his family, and also God’s will to come through regarding the sale of our home and the details of our new home in Temecula.

Also, please pray about helping us with a very special year-end gift at this time.

Cindy and I want you to know how deeply blessed we are to have your prayers and financial support—you are dearly loved,

Vince

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November 2016 Exciting News & Move Update

prisonquotewebAs I write to you today Cindy and I are in Temecula. I drove her back here last week and am planning to fly back to Colorado this Wednesday November 9th. Cindy is back settled in at our daughter’s home here and will begin looking for a home to rent or buy as I wind things down back in Colorado. I have a few speaking assignments to finish and am planning on moving out to be with Cindy before the end of the year. Please continue to pray for our home to sell and the Lord help us settle into our new home and responsibilities.

Last Saturday I had the privilege of speaking to the Centerpoint Church men’s breakfast here in Murrieta where our daughter’s family attends. This is one if the largest churches in this area and they brought their two campuses together for this event. It was a great gathering and I brought a message on developing an intimate relationship with Jesus. There were 10-15 men who gave their heart to the Lord and many others who made commitments to get closer to Him in the spirit of (James 4:8). I am looking forward to working more closely with their men’s ministry team in the future.

Next week I speak for my friend Bill Anderson at his annual Leadership Development Council (LDC) in Colorado Springs at the beautiful Hideaway. Then, on Thanksgiving weekend I will be in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada for a weekend with Beulah Alliance Church. This is one of the largest churches in Canada and they are expecting over 500 men at the Saturday event. I will also have the privilege of speaking at all of their weekend services that are broadcast to multiple campuses.

On Monday the 5th of December I will be attending my last CEO breakfast in the Spring’s and then on the 8th I have been asked by my friend Dwight Johnson to bring the message for the Men With A Purpose Christmas Banquet. This unique gathering of men has been a real blessing for our community and on this occasion the wives are invited—it will be festive for sure. Cindy and I have fond memories of addressing this gathering in San Diego years ago and brought a special message on marriage. If you are in the Colorado Springs area and would like to attend please contact me for more information.

As of this writing I am planning to move out to Temecula sometime after the 10th of December providing we can secure a temporary place to rent or stay until we sell our home and decide where to settle in.

Cindy and I want to encourage you to please pray for us during this time. As you may suspect, this Christmas will be a little different. One of the more special things we love to do is decorate and entertain during the holidays and while this year will be special as we celebrate with family—it is not the same when you are between homes.

It is also going to continue to be trying financially as we cannot afford to rent in Temecula and carry our home in Colorado at the same time. In addition, we also need some strong year-end gifts to come in as most ministries like ours really count on them to get through the December season. Please consider these points of prayer and also helping financially as you are able. I have included the information from last month regarding some creative ways you may want to pray about giving. Please also be on the lookout over this next week as I am sending a special brief video announcement outlining the exciting His Kingdom Funding program that will help us with our effort to reach out to rescue missions and prisons.

Here are a couple of creative ways you can help us;

Save this link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/84-1275142 and go to it for all your Amazon purchases. It takes you to your sign in page and changes nothing on your end but Amazon contributes a percentage of every sale to On Target.

Also, you can sign up a credit card through His Kingdom Funding and it will round up every sale to the next dollar. The contribution then goes to On Target minus a 10% administration fee. Click here http://ontarget.hiskingdomfunding.com/ and be sure to watch the videos for instructions.

Cindy and I love you dearly and pray God’s richest blessings upon you and your family.

Helping men become all that God intended,

Vince

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Vote Your Conscience? Really?

homer-simpson-690x382All night long my sleep was interrupted with more and more ideas to ad to my already monstrous list of wrongs I perceived were done to me by a contractor I had hired.  The more I thought about it the angrier I became.  I was livid. You see, I have discovered there are two sides to my brain, the Italian side and the Christian side. One says wackem and the other says love him. Seriously though—we do go back and forth between the flesh and the spirit, do we not?

Well, the next morning as I began my private time with God, I prayed, Lord, search me today, as I always do every day.  I then opened to my first reading assignment in my read through the Bible in a year program and this is the verse I read:

Jeremiah [12:1] LORD, you always give me justice when I bring a case before you. Now let me bring you this complaint: 

It was an amazing epiphany for me.  I got down on my knees and asked God to please forgive me for allowing a spirit of self-righteousness, bitterness and anger to invade my heart and sear my conscience.  Please forgive me for not living what You have given me to teach others.  Help me, Lord to truly become the man You intended.

I realized that any injustice, if it exists, is not for me to discern.  My only assignment is to bring it before Him.  He helped me understand that what this man and I were dealing with is not the issue—the issue has to do with how much He loved both of us and expects our response to always be going to Him first. Crawling up in His lap. Gaining His perspective. To close the story—I did write this man and instead of expecting anything from him in return—God gave me the power to forgive and ask for forgiveness from him.

Ok, so what does all this have to do with our title? Almost daily I hear people saying vote your conscience when it comes to the upcoming election. It begs the question, what is conscience and what are the implications here. As followers of Jesus we understand the Biblical perspective of man being made up of three parts, body, soul and spirit.

In 1 Timothy 1:5 Paul says, The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience… 

T. M. Moore, writing in the Christian Worldview Journal describes conscience this way: The mind, heart, and conscience are three components of the soul: all must be shaped and brought into the effort of learning and living according to the teachings of sound doctrine.

What is the conscience? In the soul the conscience is that immaterial component that develops and stores our values, priorities, and default choices. Another way of thinking of the conscience is as the will. In the soul a continuous dialog is underway between the mind – what we think – the heart – how we feel – and the conscience – our most basic convictions. The conscience functions as a kind of referee in the soul, bringing together the thoughts of our minds and the affections of our hearts in a harmonious and truthful way, so that love can issue from all our learning. Thus, it is very important that the conscience be in proper working order – what Paul describes as a “good” conscience, one that pleases God and serves men (Acts 24:16).

Please notice the phrase; Thus, it is very important that the conscience be in proper working order. My friend, have you examined your conscience. It is clear from my personal illustration that even those of us who are seemingly mature Christians who have followed the Lord for many years are prone to having our conscience seared.

So, as we ready ourselves to enter that voting process this time may I suggest a few ideas to consider? Here are a series of questions you may want to take before God:

  • What role may self-righteousness, bitterness and anger be playing right now as it relates to the condition of my heart? Remember, what we think affects how we feel, (our heart) and that impacts our convictions.
  • Lord, am I truly seeking You and Your perspective on the matters before me or have I made up my mind without You?
  • If I examine the time I spend watching and absorbing news VS seeking you in prayer, how would it stack up?
  • To what extent have I allowed my convictions to be shaped by others as opposed to my own Spirit-led discovery?
  • Am I finding it difficult to realize the good God may be seeing in the midst of all of the turmoil and confusion?
  • Am I finding it difficult to be at peace knowing that God is not anxious about this or any election?

1 Timothy 4:1-2 (ESV)  Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared…

Titus 1:15 (NIV)  To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted.

Some people say they will follow their conscience…many of us have dead consciences. Your conscience is no longer a safe guide. You’ve deadened it.  —Billy Graham

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October 2016 Special News & Godly GrandFathering DVD Release

FullSizeRenderAs I write to you today Cindy and I have just finished our drive from Temecula back here to our home in Monument, Colorado. As you may know, Cindy has been in California and apart from me for about 5 months now. She is back here at this time for two reasons. First, we have a couple of important doctor follow up appointments and second, we wanted to see if there has been any change in her condition.

While I am happy to report she has made the trip here very well, we are not experiencing any significant change in her need for oxygen assistance. Our plan is to be here for most of October and then I will drive her back. It was such a blessing to see how our kids and grandkids here reacted to seeing her. Cindy is basking in the glow of all their love and affection and I am thrilled to have her back for this brief time.

As for the future of our personal and ministry move, we are not experiencing any activity yet on the sale of our home. It looks like purchases for our price range have dried up causing us to seek the Lord for options. If possible financially, I may make the move and leave the home empty or possibly lease it for a time. We are looking at that possibility right now and could use your prayers.

At the end of last month I had to make an emergency trip to San Jose, California as my brother, Ron was in the hospital with a rare but potentially life-threatening condition. I was there for about a week and am happy to report that as of today, he is home and his condition is improving. As a result, I also had to cancel a trip to Phoenix and a speaking assignment there at Casa De Cristo Church. Our good friends there have graciously agreed to rebook the event for later this fall or early spring.

On a positive note several encouraging things are happening. First, we received a major gift dedicated toward the completion of our last two volumes for the new curriculum. Pat McGuire is now doing the final authoring and repackaging to be ready very soon. We have enough wonderful content to market this as a two-year series.   I will have more information to share on this soon.

Pat is also working on launching a new app that can be downloaded into tablets and smartphones for On Target. The app will be our branded property and allow us to push content directly to the user. Can you imagine the potential of that? People can sign up to receive our daily devotionals and even watch our video series right on their devices.

In addition, we are preparing to make serious inroads into the rescue mission and prison environment with our new curriculum. I am more excited about this than almost anything we have ever accomplished. I have seen how this material works in these places and we have been so blessed by the incredible testimonies we have received.

As I close please allow me to make a special appeal for help this month. When we received the funds last month to complete our project I knew that I had to give all of it to Pat. He has been so patient and faithful to help us even when no money was coming his way. The result of that decision and the cancellation of our last event mentioned earlier, has created a shortfall last month of $5,000.00.

As you can imagine, with all the unknowns we are currently facing regarding our future and the major move we are desperately seeking God for His plan and provision. Dear friend, whether you can give financially or not Cindy and I do want to ask you to please pray for us through this challenging and exciting time.

Here are a couple of creative ways you can help us;

Save this link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/84-1275142 and go to it for all your Amazon purchases. It takes you to your sign in page and changes nothing on your end but Amazon contributes a percentage of every sale to On Target.

Also, you can sign up a credit card through His Kingdom Funding and it will round up every sale to the next dollar. The contribution then goes to On Target minus a 10% administration fee. Click here http://ontarget.hiskingdomfunding.com/ and be sure to watch the videos for instructions.

Finally, we are now in production of our new Godly GrandFathering video and you can find it in our on-line shop here http://otm.co/product/godly-grandfathering/ For donations of 50.00 or more I will be sending you a free copy. I am so excited about this product—it is so needed today.

Cindy and I love you dearly and pray God’s richest blessings upon you and your family.

Vince

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We are at an exciting pinnacle 25 years in the making

a83d75cd-c53b-47bf-bb3f-b64cd12c77a6Most Christian men aren’t on a path to be all that God intended them to be. I have done my best, with God, to reach as many as I could. But what I could do has been limited by the simple fact that I can only be in one place at a time ministering to men. A critical truth that God showed me years ago was that in order for men to have real transformational change they had to be in a relational environment. I couldn’t do more. I had to find a way to get what God showed me into the hands of other leaders of men.

To Cindy and I, this is the most exciting and potentially powerful pinnacle in all of our years of ministry! In the years of ministering to tens of thousands of men, God has brought great results. Many of you reading this letter were impacted by OTI. Now, for the first time ever, we can distribute the material via DVD and online to men all around the world and guide them into what God intended for them. Men will get the lessons and watch them with their small groups of men and be changed. We are so excited about this! And we know you are too!

Pat and I have spent 100s if not more hours working on this so that it can be a blessing. We have spent many hours together recording, refining and readying the Men On Target curriculum. The goal is to help men Become the Man God Intended and it is now ready for distribution. God is already using this! We are experiencing tremendous results as reported by early adopters:

“When we started this we had no idea what we were in for…this is the best I have seen” – 25 year men’s ministry veteran

(Click here for video)

The best thing I could be experiencing since getting out of prison…” – former inmate

(Click here for video)

47d8aa39-2cf3-423d-9ce8-23513bc4d709Praise God for what He is doing in the lives of men through OTI! Thank you to those of you who have prayed and given to make all this possible.

As you may know, you can have the most wonderful product in the world but if people do not know about it—it stays on th
e shelf. We cannot afford to let that happen. We now have to get the word out through expanding our base and well thought out marketing–this is where we need your help.

We received, by the grace of God, $10,000.00 a month in free Google Ads through a grant. I am told that if we maximize these ads we will be able to secure an increase to $40,000.00 a month. This is an amazing gift from God but not without a cost. To manage all of this on the technical side is going to take expertise we do not have internally. Plus, it will require us to be at a higher level of maintenance for the website. An additional monthly support of $1500.00 is needed over and above regular operating expenses and other fundraising needs in order to make this happen. This is a very reasonable price and we are thankful the people that will be helping us with this also have a real heart to see the Men On Target curriculum get into the hands of leaders of men.

At this point we are basically stuck until we can raise the monthly support to release our creative, technical and marketing people to do their work. Your prayerful consideration at this time is very important—PLEASE pray and ask God if you may be someone He wants to use to help us. I trust Him completely and know He will answer your prayers.

If you are a church, please consider putting us on your mission budget for the next year. If you are an individual or part of a family, please pray about generously partnering with OTI. When you give to OTI, you are helping us reach more men all around the world.

Giving is easy. Here are four simple ways:

  • Our number one request is for new or increased monthly partnerships. Click this link to do that: http://otm.co/donate-recurring/. If you choose to use this method please either call or email me with your complete contact information if you are not already on our list.
  • One-time gifts are greatly appreciated. Click this link to do that: http://otm.co/donate/
  • Use your bank’s “bill pay” feature to send donations (recurring or one-time)
  • Mail your gift to On Target Ministries, PO Box 1654, Monument, Colorado, 80132

If you have any questions or would like to talk with me personally, perhaps about OTI, or something going on in your life, please call my cell at 719-649-1000. I’d love to hear from you. You may remember that Cindy is in California right now (and doing very well!) and I am in Colorado while our house is waiting to sell.

Finally, I want to bless you. For your help in this effort, I want to give you two very special gifts. First, a free membership online to our full curriculum – this includes the new Men On Target series. This gives you the ability to download teachings and to share as you wish (currently a $120.00 item). I also want to sign you up for our 30-day email devotional on fear. This powerful daily ministry has helped thousands in overcoming fear—a special resource for these trying times. When you make a donation, it will automatically send us a note and then we will get these to you as soon as we can.

Cindy and I love you dearly and pray God’s richest blessings upon you and your family.

In His Service,

Vince

P.S. Here is another testimony!

The short time that I have been associated with OTI has changed my life dramatically. Not only have I accepted Christ as my savior and asked for His help in my life, but I have found fellowship with other men that I have not ever known before. I’m sharing things with these men that I have never shared with anyone before, and I really feel they are listening. Even more important is that they are sharing with me and I’m listening. God Bless. —P.D.

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IMPORTANT MOVE UPDATE and August News

VinceCindyPorJuly was a special month. As you may know, I moved Cindy to Temecula to live with our daughter Kim and her family until our home here in Colorado sells and I can join her. She was there for a couple of months before I had the opportunity to see her as I spent most of the month of July there. It was so wonderful to be reunited with her and also spend considerable time meeting and networking in the area regarding our future ministry opportunities.

I was able to meet with numbers of contacts from the business world as well as many ministry leaders and Pastors. The exciting takeaway for me was the surfacing of at least two and perhaps three places where I might be able to minister and consult on a part-time basis to use our gifts and further the financial stability of On Target Ministry and my family. More news on this is forthcoming.

On July 29th I packed up Beau, our Golden Retriever, and headed back to Colorado to wrap things up and help in getting our home sold. The challenge right now is that we are not getting a lot of lookers. We lowered the price last week and praying that God send us just the right family to enjoy the home we loved so much for over 25 years. It looks like I will have to be here until our home sells, as we do not have the ability to make the move and pay rent on the other end while still carrying the mortgage here.

On the way home our friend Frank Martin, from Las Vegas, asked me to speak at their men’s retreat for Canyon Ridge Church. The event was at the Martin’s cabin about 10,000 feet above Cedar City, Utah. There were over 130 men in attendance and I had the honor of bringing the opening session on that Friday night around the topic of Authenticity. This church holds a very special place in our heart as it was where we taped our teaching, Armed…Ready For Battle, back around 2010.

It was about a year after Cindy’s miraculous recovery from her life threatening illness, I told the story of our family’s journey revealing what God had taught us through the struggle. It became a special video on our website and is still there ministering to hundreds of people who are facing tough times. I still remember introducing Cindy at the end to a standing ovation as Pastor Kevin Odor came out and prayed over us. It was nice to see him again at the men’s event.

God really used our message as about 30 men gave their heart to Jesus at the conclusion. I spent the night there in the Martin’s cabin and left early the next morning to complete my trip back to Colorado. Beau and I arrived late afternoon on that Saturday exhausted from our trip but rejuvenated by seeing our family here and enjoying dinner with them.

Since back I have been having some intense times of prayer and fellowship with God every morning. I am so excited about our future but I must admit, also a little intimidated from not having a clearer picture on what that future looks like. What I believe He is telling me is to be patient and just stay close to him. If you are like me you know how important it is to do that but you also struggle with so many questions that need answers. I know that prayer is the key here so I want to ask you to please take the following prayer requests to our Lord on our behalf.

Prayer requests for Vince and Cindy:

  • Pray that God bring just the right buyer for our home and for just the right price
  • Pray for clarity on what options to pick in Temecula for future ministry opportunities
  • Pray for Cindy to have peace in her heart having to wait on closure for our situation
  • Pray for Vince to have favor with all the people and programs still needing to connect to further OTM and the final packaging of our new curriculum
  • Pray for funds to come in to get us through the difficult summer months

NOTE: You may recall that I did not conduct our annual Golf Fundraiser this year as it would have prevented me from spending time with Cindy. Instead, I appealed to our former participants to consider a special gift at this time. To date, we have had only two people participate—so please—pray about helping us if you are able.

Cindy and I pray God’s richest blessing upon you and your family.

            Helping men become Fully Alive—the man God intended,

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Becoming A Pawn? (The Truth/Deception Paradigm)

ConfusedPawnSurely God would not… -The devil

When I was 16 years old my dad brought me to an indoctrination meeting for a group that he had become a member of. As I was passing into manhood, he suggested it would be good for me.

I remember entering a large auditorium where about 50 other men of various ages were seated, awaiting the program. The moderator asked us to leave for a short time, as they needed to prepare the room for the presentation. So they ushered all of us into a small room to wait.

I remember thinking this is sure a small space for all these men, and there were no chairs. It will probably be a short wait, I thought. It was not. In fact, the wait was nearly an hour. During that time I remember being uncomfortable, as it began to get hot and stuffy. The door was locked so there was no way out.

Pretty soon some of the men were feeling very uncomfortable, even claustrophobic. One of the men started knocking on the door insisting to be let out, only to be told by the man on the other side to be patient. The conversation escalated and the knocking became pounding by not just one but now about 3-4 men. The language became so heated that threats of bodily harm were being thrown in both directions.

When the door finally swung open the mayhem began. Immediately 3-4 of our men grabbed the doorkeeper, tackled him to the ground and began beating him mercilessly. After a minute or so I saw a knife appear and almost instantly there was blood everywhere. They had stabbed this man multiple times.

The scene became eerily quiet as most of us just stood back in utter shock. In very short order emergency responders appeared on the scene, attended the injured man and took him off in an ambulance. The rest of us were then asked to go back to the auditorium and take a seat.

What happened next I will never forget. The moderator took the platform and proceeded to introduce all the actors. None of what we had just experienced was what we had perceived. It was all an act. The moderator told us that this was an illustration of how communism works. An example of how a few well-placed people with a well thought-out plan can establish circumstances designed to manipulate the masses into seeing a reality that does not exist. We were literally pawns.

As I think back upon this experience I cannot help thinking about how much of this goes on today all over our world. Leadership is key here, but we must remember that it can be good or evil depending upon its motivations. Good leadership is always undergirded by truth. In contrast evil leadership is always based upon deception. We all know how far back this goes—it started in the garden when the devil convinced the first couple that there was a different reality than God had shown them.

So, you might ask, why am I sharing this? I am persuaded that to a large extent we are all pawns nurtured and developed by small minorities with motives we often do not perceive. As we go into what might be the most important election cycle in our nation’s history I want to give you some things to think and pray about. I also want to say that deception is not associated with any political party or group—it is practiced by all.

We are well aware that the enemy wants to destroy, and throughout history has used people for his evil purposes. As a result we must be discerning always about the intentions of leaders; the higher the level the more potential destruction.

If I were a leader with evil intentions designed to destroy our nation, I would:

  • Remove all reference to a moral authority not agreed upon by the state and intimidate the church by proclaiming deep moral issues are political and therefore off limits.
  • Indoctrinate upcoming generations of young people with information designed to create a negative attitude toward our nation, established authority, and the rule of law
  • Control the basic necessities of life: water, food and natural resources, through a series of far-reaching regulations, and convince people it is in order to save the planet
  • Bring about anarchy by exaggerating and making up stories designed to polarize around race, gender, class and lifestyle issues in order to exercise more control (possibly martial law)
  • Reduce the ability to protect ourselves through compromising our national defense systems and disarming our citizens
  • Create a large poor and homeless population and convince them it is the system around them that is at fault (national slavery)
  • Integrate as many immigrants into the culture as possible, especially those with different and oftentimes conflicting ideologies, and whose birthrate far exceeds the majority
  • De-emphasize all threats from outside enemies while covertly supporting them

As a Christian reading this I want you to consider what would happen if, God forbid, we ever have leadership that wants to take us in this direction.

So, here are some questions for you to consider in this critical election cycle:

  1. Are you giving in to deliberate and often-deceptive attempts to get you to evaluate candidates based upon their character flaws, rather than examining the ideologies they stand for and the direction they will pursue?
  2. Do you buy into a reality defined by Fox news or CNN simply because they are your preferred source of what is truth?
  3. To what extent are the conclusions you are arriving at supported by your ethnicity, the color of your skin, how you were raised and what you have been taught, rather than prayerfully considered facts?
  4. Have you prayed and considered, in light of Gods Word, what is truth and what is deception?

Finally, pray God protects us from the evil intentions of our real enemy and for Him to help our leaders who may be influenced by him to see the alternative, His Son.

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Important Update on Cindy and Our Major Move, July 2016

3d2bde1Below is an important email I sent out to some of our faithful donors and prayer partners last week.  I wanted to expand this message to you, our larger constituency, to let you know what is going on and ask for your special consideration in helping us at this time.

Here is an important update and special call for your financial help at this critical time. As you may know, Cindy is now settled, without the need for oxygen support, at our daughter’s house in Temecula, CA. Her health could not be better and her spirits are high and only dampened by the predictable bittersweet circumstances in leaving our precious family and friends here in Colorado.

I am still here until our home sells—it went on the market officially last Saturday. It is hard not being with Cindy so I am planning on spending most of July there with her. As a result, through prayer and wise Godly counsel, I have decided that our annual golf fundraiser will not happen this year. I simply do not have the bandwidth to put that on with all the other moving parts that have to be managed as part of this major move.

That said, it brings to light our need to find alternative funding sources to help us through the summer months, contribute to our moving costs, retire our short-term debt and pay the final installment for the completion of our MOT Curriculum.

Here is the good news. If we can raise the roughly $30,000.00 necessary to accomplish all of this, we will be able to reset everything when we arrive in California. It will be a clean slate and exciting new beginning of what God is going to unfold there.

support-raisingHERE IS WHERE WE REALLY NEED YOUR HELP.

WOULD YOU CONSIDER A MAJOR GIFT AT THIS TIME TO HELP US ACCOMPLISH OUR GOAL? HERE ARE SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:

If you have participated in our golf tourney in years past and were thinking of signing up for 2016, would you please consider donating at that level for this effort?

The single player fee has always been $250.00 and the foursomes go for $1,000.00 each. I know that some of you in the past have actually sponsored players and even multiple foursomes. Please pray about doing the same again for us this year as a send off for On Target.

For any of you who can contribute at the 250.00 level or above I will include a free annual membership to all of our on line resources including our new curriculum (a $99.00 value)

Here are three ways to contribute:

  • You can send a payment to On Target Ministries at our PO Box 1654, Monument, CO 80132-1654
  • You can send it directly to Cindy in California at below

Kim Butchko (our daughter)
43799 Via Cavalo
Temecula CA 92592

Thank you so much and may God richly bless you,

 

Vince

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Evil, Tragedy & The Christian Man

GodComfortsBefore I begin, a brief caution is called for. While this article is directed toward Christian men it is not intended to minimize the importance of, or responsibility given, to Christian women. I am dealing with men first, because they are the primary focus of our ministry, but particularly out of a deep understanding of the importance God places upon us to lead our families with spiritual wisdom and authority.

Then the Lord said to Noah, “Come into the ark, you and all your household, because I have seen that you are righteous before Me in this generation. –Gen 7:1

Shortly after the recent tragedy in Orlando, Florida I came across this scripture as part of my morning devotional reading. The author pointed out the conditions that existed in the society around the time of the flood and the similarities to what is happening in our world today are astounding. Here is an excerpt:

The children of Noah faced a significant decision. They lived in a world where everyone blatantly disregarded God. Wickedness was the norm. No one would have condemned Noah’s sons for living evil lives like the rest of society — no one except their father. In a world rampant with ungodly attitudes and every form of wicked behavior, they were fortunate to be Noah’s sons. When their father invited them to spend the next hundred years building an ark in obedience to a word from God, Noah’s sons had to choose whether to believe those around them or to trust their father. They chose to join their father. What a wonderful testimony of Noah’s godly influence in his home! How fortunate for Shem, Ham, and Japheth that their father refused to compromise his integrity, even though everyone else in his society had done so. –From Experiencing God

What is of utmost importance here is NOT the circumstances that existed around them or even the building of the Ark itself. Rather, it is Noah’s response. In the midst of evil and tragic circumstances he maintained his intimacy with God which enabled him to become the sound voice or calming influence to the family God had entrusted to him.

Dear friend therein lies the lesson for you and me today. The issue right now is not the tragedy that unfolded in Orlando or even the people who perpetrated it—rather, it is our response to it as men of God. We are called to be His agents with our wives, children and grandchildren and ultimately to all with whom we come in contact. Like Noah we are called to usher them into a safe place.

So, here is the BIG question. What do people around you see in your response to tragic circumstance? Are you helping them to see things through the eyes of our Lord or contributing to more of a worldly mindset and response?

I want to leave you with three things to consider as you endeavor to become God’s agent in the midst of trying circumstance and tragic events. I would ask you to prayerfully process them and decide to challenge yourself in areas where you may be falling short.

1. Seek God

  • Our first response is to seek God in prayer and ask Him to give you the right (Godly) perspective on what has occurred
  • Ask Him to help you focus your attention on what happened not the people involved
  • Let Him know how much you love Him and know that He is in control and ask Him to prepare you to meet the needs of those around you 
1. Calm others
  • Become a Jeremiah man. Jeremiah looking over the rubble of a destroyed city says, Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23
  • Beginning with your own family, become a calming influence.   This is especially important with your wife, kids and even extended family members. Remember, when you profess Jesus as your Lord and Savior, people are watching you—it is at times like this that they want to know if being a follower of Christ really makes a difference.
  • With others you encounter either at work, in your neighborhood or even at church, do not allow yourself to fall into the trap of talking about people, politics or conversations that take you away from how God might view things
3. Focus on our REAL enemy
  • Pray for our nation every day and ask God to protect us from the great deceiver who has come to steal, kill and destroy

Eph. 6:12-17 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

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IMPORTANT UPDATE On Our Big Transition (June 2016)

images-2Jeremiah 29:11  For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give hope and a future

Over 30 years ago a great man of God by the name of Dick Mills prayed over Cindy and me during a season where we were teaching our marrieds class at The Church On The Way. He told us that God gave him some verses to share with us—Jeremiah 29:11 was one of them. I cannot tell you how many times this verse has come back to us at significant times of great challenge. It remains a special blessing to us at this important transition time in our life and ministry.

Cindy’s move to California
As I write to you today we are literally packing up Cindy’s car to drive to Temecula this Tuesday May 31st. We should arrive at our daughter Kim’s home sometime Wednesday and the plan is to get Cindy settled in and then I will fly back to Colorado that following Sunday, remaining at our home until it sells. Our son-in-law, Mark McWilliams will be putting the home on the market officially sometime mid June.

Once our home sells we can then more clearly assess our options in Temecula. Needless to say, transitions like this are never easy. I am not looking forward to being without my bride for an extended period—most of you know how lost I am without her.

Let me share briefly a couple of ministry notes and then leave you with a very important list of prayer requests for us. On Tuesday June 7th, Pat McGuire and I head for Jacksonville, Florida where I will be addressing the Association Of Gospel Rescue Missions (AGRM) national conference. My plenary session will be the opening one on Wednesday morning and I am looking forward to what God is going to do. They are expecting around 1,000 delegates, most of them CEO’s from missions throughout North America.

I have spent a lot of time asking God to give me a special message for this precious group of leaders. These men and women are literally the arrow-point of ministry in our nation today and the needs they provide are likely to become even more critical given the direction we are headed. Their theme is, Counter Culture. I believe the Lord is directing me to bring a hybrid message dealing with my title, Real Christianity In An Un-Real World along with a strong call to become serious about our personal spiritual preparedness to lead and serve.

Click on the image here for a video of the Real Christianity message I brought to over 1000 men at the ISI conference several weeks ago in Springfield, IL.

We will be in Florida for two days and then back home to plan a farewell golf event (between July 19—August 16) and work on our garage sale and other logistics associated with the transition. For those of you who have gone through a move like this, you know all that it entails—I’m tired just thinking about it.

 OK, with all that as a backdrop here now is the important stuff—Cindy and my personal call for your intercessory PRAYER. Please take the list below to God in our behalf over this next season:

Prayer for Vince and Cindy and On Target ministries

  • For Cindy to get settled into Temecula and for God to heal her lungs completely
  • For our home to sell quickly and for a fair price that will help us as we scale down and look to get debt free. (Our total retirement is wrapped up in the small amount of equity remaining in our home)
  • For an incredible response to our upcoming farewell golf fundraiser
  • For much needed funds to flow in order to help with our moving costs and pay for the completion of our new curriculum– Here is the link to our web donation page if you would like to help us http://otm.co/donate/.
  • For Pat and I to have a powerful time in Jacksonville as I speak and we together announce our new curriculum to the AGRM
  • For God to show us just the right home to either buy or rent as we transition
  • For God to open new doors of ministry opportunity in the Southern California area

I’ll be sending another update soon to let you know how things are going. Remember that as a financial partner, every person that we minister to is someone that you are ministering to as well.

Cindy and I pray God’s richest blessing upon you and your family.

 

Helping men become Fully Alive—the man God intended,