Today is Randy’s birthday, and we wanted to post some thoughts on his blog (without his permission!) to let him know the impact he’s had on our lives and how much we appreciate him.
We’d also like to invite you to share in a comment how Randy and his writings have encouraged you and pointed you to Christ.
Thank you, Lord Jesus, for Randy. Thanks for the way you put people in our lives to point us back to you. We’re grateful.
I’m often asked by people who have never met Randy before, “What is Randy like?” or, “What is it like working for Randy Alcorn?” Sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start when answering those questions. Randy is really like no other person I’ve ever met; he’s unique. He has a wicked sense of humor. (He puts plastic spiders in a box, just to hear you scream. What a guy!)
Everyone is instantly drawn to his easy-going and fun-loving nature. His knowledge of the Bible is amazing, and he’s a generous giver of his talents, time and money. He’s the real deal, and practices what he preaches. However, Randy is well aware of his own sinful nature and takes careful steps to keep himself on bended knee before the Lord. He is humble and kind and a lover of people. He’s always encouraging us and directing us back to the Lord and His ways. Personally, he has rejoiced with me in my victories and wept with me in times of pain. Who is Randy to me? He’s my boss, mentor, and friend.
Former EPM staff
In The Grace & Truth Paradox, Randy describes his first encounter with George. If Randy had not chosen to notice someone in distress and go out of his way to help, George would not be enjoying eternity in Heaven today.
Soon after I started working at EPM, I began observing Randy’s desire to reach out to everyone who crossed his path. The FEDEX man would deliver a package, and Randy would hear from his office in the back that we had a visitor. He would race out with book in hand to offer it to the driver who was often already out the door. Randy modeled an awareness of every person as either a seeker to reach or a believer to encourage. I especially enjoyed the times when Randy would return from a trip and share about all his divine appointments. I learned a lot about keeping my eyes open for such opportunities.
Following Randy’s example, I started carrying books when I traveled. Before long I was experiencing my own divine appointments. Thank you, Randy, for showing us how to start a conversation about the things that really matter.
Former EPM Staff
Randy, you knew my parents long before I was around so my childhood is sprinkled with memories of you. I remember being a young girl and our families having an impromptu dance in the living room as the Beach Boys played on the record player. (That dates you!) I also remember several pranks you pulled, like the time you drove me home from babysitting your daughters and thought it would be funny to fake an insulin reaction. (Yeah, very funny.) You shared wisdom about relationships and purity when I was a dating teenager, you gave an important “thumbs up” after meeting my then-boyfriend-but-soon-to-be-fiancé Rick on a layover at the Minneapolis airport, and you officiated our wedding ceremony. More importantly, you’ve shaped my thinking about missions, money, and Heaven in a thousand different ways…and continue to do so. It’s a privilege to work for you, Randy. Thanks for being a faithful brother in Christ. And happy birthday!
Former EPM Staff
It has been a great pleasure working for Randy Alcorn on and off for the past 25 years. I have been especially blessed by typing his research and manuscript notes. I struggled at times reading his handwritten notes, but have learned and benefited personally from so much of the information he has compiled. For a person who grew up in a Christian home, it is amazing how much new information I gleaned from his writings on Heaven. It has been a very educational job.
It has been wonderful to work with someone who walks the talk—which is amazing, especially seeing how prolific he is with information! I count it a real privilege to have shared in Randy’s ministry for so many years.
Former EPM Staff
When I think about Randy I can smile and I can cry. I can smile when I think of his sarcastic sense of humor which I love. He can respond to one of my emails in a way that has me laughing out loud! Back in the old days when we still used typewriters and I worked for him as a pastor, I was typing the church bulletin and had left it in the typewriter overnight. He came in and typed a sarcastic note about me and how much I was going to eat for Easter Sunday dinner thinking I would see it and obviously remove it. However, what he didn’t know was that another secretary came in the next day and mistakenly had it printed as is! Of course, when I saw it on Sunday morning, the first thought that came to my mind was…RANDY!!!
And I can cry when I think of the scripture “A friend sticks closer than a brother.” Not only is Randy my boss, but he is also a dear and precious brother and the most loyal friend a person could ask for. Of the many things he has done for me over the years, one I will always remember was when I was out of state and my father had to have emergency triple by-pass surgery. Even as a busy man in full-time ministry, Randy took my place at the hospital and spent the entire day hanging out with my family. This brings tears to my eyes even now as I think of my soon-to-be 90-year-old father who has been so blessed by Randy’s friendship and care of our family.
I’m honored to work for a man with such high integrity, humility, generosity, and kindness to others, and who has such a heart for the needy. Thanks, Randy, for the privilege of representing you and for impacting my life in countless ways. Happy birthday!
EPM Board Member and Randy's Former Assistant
I am grateful for Randy because in so many ways, he has been a spiritual father to me and my husband Dan. He has been supportive to me over the years I’ve worked at EPM, but two times stand out in particular. One is when my husband and I found out I was unexpectedly pregnant at a difficult time in life. Randy called and encouraged me that this child was planned by God and also told me I could continue to work for EPM if I wished. I got to experience his prolife convictions firsthand. The second time was last year when I was diagnosed with a serious illness. I vividly remember him calling to pray and reading to me from Romans 8. I am blessed to work with him and call him a friend.
In a culture where there are a lot of "gray areas" for many people when it comes to what is true, I appreciate Randy's example that it's okay—even right—to have black-and-white convictions based on the Bible, and to say so. Abortion is wrong. Heaven and Hell are absolutely real places. Christians should go to church. We worry so much in this culture about offending others by speaking the truth. We think, “How can I say it nicely?” or “Will they still like me if I disagree with them?” But some things just need to be said, and God wants us to be bold in what we know to be true. I admire Randy's firm convictions and boldness to say it like it is!
I appreciate Randy’s Money, Possessions, & Eternity book since I read it for the first time about 20 years ago. I did not grow up in a home where tithing was taught or modeled for me, so the idea that giving always comes first was a new idea shown to me by my new (at the time) husband. I was trying to “like” doing it, but it always seemed more like giving our money away. I’ll never forget the first January after we were married when my husband compared our last December check stubs to our giving statement from the church and said we needed to give an extra $250 to make up our ten percent for the previous year. I thought that on weekends we had missed church we didn’t have to give, so I'd missed writing a few checks! Randy’s book really helped me see it all with God’s perspective instead of my own and begin to find the joy in giving the first and best to God... and we have seen God's blessings in our family for 24 years because of it.
One of the main things I really appreciate about Randy is the major role he has played in setting my eyes and my heart on things above rather than on the things of this earth. I'll never forget the summer vacation, many years ago, when I took his book In Light of Eternity on vacation with me, and it forever changed my thinking and my life. I am so grateful that God used Randy to influence my spiritual journey. His writings, teachings, and his very life have impacted me (as well as countless others), not only in the way I live my life here, but also in what my eternity will be like. It has been a tremendous privilege to work for Randy, who has been greatly gifted and used by God. I appreciate that he has a brilliant mind, yet he is very humble, his life glorifies the Lord, and he has a fun sense of humor.
Former EPM Staff
Soli Deo Gloria,
The Staff of Eternal Perspective Ministries