Includes ministry highlights, testimonials, a financial snapshot, and prayer requests.
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Quarterly Ministry Update
You are receiving this e-mail because you have previously supported our ministry or signed up to receive updates at If you do not wish to receive these types of e-mails from Living by Design Ministries in the future, you can opt-out here.


Since we launched this non-profit ministry in 2017, we've received financial contributions from more than 600 people.

When I scan our donor list, I can always spot a few familiar names my parents, my high school teacher, my aunt, the sweet lady I've known since I was in grade school.

But most people who choose to invest in Living by Design are unfamiliar to me.

I may have exchanged an e-mail or two with them, but I don't know their stories, and I don't know what prompted them to give to our ministry.

I don't know exactly why you choose to give to our ministry either.

So, I sincerely appreciated a recent statistic I read from the Barna Research Group.

When asked why they choose to give, 69% of practicing Christians answered, "I give because of who I am."

I love this answer because it is why I sit at my computer day after day and pour my life and my words into Living by Design Ministries.

I give to you because of who God has made me to be! And it's comforting to know that many of our donors likely understand and share my motivation.

As Christians, we practice generosity because we are called to love God and love others (Mk 12:30-31).

But, no matter how deeply we desire to live generous lives, we must prayerfully and carefully choose where to invest our time, talents, and treasures.

That is why I appreciate the expressed motivation for the remaining 31% of givers:

  • I give because of why I am asked (11%)
  • I give because of how I am asked (8%)
  • I give because of the person asking (7%)
  • I give because of the ministry asking (6%)

Please keep me in your prayers as we enter the fall fundraising season. Ask God to give me words and wisdom to communicate our financial needs with this community.

I recognize the importance of asking others to partner with us in this work.

We are the body of Christ, and we are each gifted in unique ways (Rm 12:6-8).

I desire to encourage everyone to give generously according to their gifts—no matter their circumstances.

Everyone can contribute to the mission and vision of Living by Design in some way!

If you are gifted as an intercessor please pray for this ministry.
If you are gifted in exhortation — please tell us how our ministry has blessed you.
If you are gifted in service — please share our ministry with others.

And if the Lord has blessed you financially, or is teaching you how to give out of your need, please give generously to Living by Design during our fall fundraiser.

We need your support as we seek to continue curating Bible-rich content to bless and encourage our community.

I look forward to sharing encouraging ministry highlights, uplifting reader testimonials, a financial snapshot, and prayer requests with you in this quarterly newsletter

Sarah Koontz
President, Living by Design Ministries

P.S. If you have any questions or want more information on any of the topics discussed in this quarterly update, please don't hesitate to contact our team at

Click to download the report card
Storyteller: Our Updated & Expanded 7-Week Parables Study
Sarah Koontz invites you to join us for “Storyteller,” a free 7-week Bible study exploring many of Christ's parables. Each day we will sit at the feet of the ultimate Storyteller and soak up the wisdom and hope His words provide. Jesus Christ's practical illustrations will help us comprehend complex spiritual truths and equip us to respond in obedience.

5 Reasons to Study Christ's Parables:

● Parables invite us to listen, to gain insight, and to change course.
● Parables help us get past our presuppositions and fears.
● Parables challenge us to refocus our vision on the goals of the kingdom.
● Parables function as filters to help us grasp spiritual truth.
● Parables reveal the abounding wisdom of the counsel of Christ!

This updated and expanded version of our free parables study includes thirty-five lessons delivered over the course of seven weeks (with two rest days each week). You will receive a welcome letter after subscribing and the first devotional will arrive in your inbox tomorrow morning.
Powerful Testimonials from Our Community
We have been honored with one of the first Top-Rated Awards of 2022 from GreatNonprofits! We appreciate all of your contributions. Here are just a few of our favorite reviews:

"Living By Design has been transformative in my life. It is refreshing like a cool drink of water in a parched land. The Bible studies and all content are provided free of charge and are created with genuine diligence and heartwarming care." - Melse

"As a mom of five kids, I don’t always have the resources available to be able to purchase expensive materials required in most studies. When I first saw that Sarah’s studies were free, I thought, 'How good can the study really be if it’s totally free?' Was I ever in for a shock! I just completed the Psalms 119 study and have been totally humbled and grateful for how God uses Sarah’s ministry to speak truth and depth into my Bible time." - Kate

"I love Living by Design Ministries and I am amazed at the variety and quality of the resources they offer. For example, I enjoy very much their SOULfood e-mails which I received every Saturday in my inbox. They are deeply encouraging and there is always a fresh insight in them." - Hadassah

Prayer Requests for Living by Design Ministries
Pray for the Koontz Family: Due to medical issues in their immediate family, Sarah and Ryan Koontz have made significant changes to their family schedule in recent months. Sarah has prayerfully put some projects on hold to properly care for her children during this challenging time. Their family seeks God's guidance and direction for Living by Design Ministries in 2023 and beyond. Here is a personal note from Sarah, "I do believe that God has called me to this ministry. I am proud of what He has accomplished through us in these five years, but I always want to be willing to grow and change for His glory. My primary ministry has always been, and will always be, to my family. If their needs require me to set aside my external ministry goals and desires for a season, I will happily do so. I covet your prayers as we seek the Lord's guidance and direction in this matter. It is my deepest desire to find a way to continue caring for my kids and writing for our community. Pray that God gives me the strength, wisdom, and endurance to do both!"

Pray for Our Community: We have experienced tremendous growth in our free Bible study community in 2022. As our ministry reach grows, so do the financial, physical, and emotional needs within our community. Please pray that God will continue to use our ministry to encourage and equip the Church to think and act biblically during these challenging times. Ask God for divine provision, guidance, and peace for every community member.

✔ Pray for our Year-End Fundraising: November and December are essential fundraising months for our non-profit ministry. In past years, up to 50% of our yearly income came from the year's final months. As many of our existing donors are struggling financially, we are asking God to provide for our free Bible study ministry in unexpected and glorious new ways. We are resting safe and secure in the shadow of His wings and trusting Him to continue to sustain our ministry in these uncertain financial times.

Pray for Guest Post Submissions: We will invite guest writers to submit articles for consideration from November 1-15. We will then read through the articles and prayerfully consider which ones to publish on the Living by Design blog in early 2023. Please ask God to help our team spread the word about this opportunity and lead the right people to write and submit articles. God is the only One who intimately knows the needs of our readers, and we are asking Him to guide and direct this process.
All Support Team members receive quarterly ministry updates, info about upcoming Bible studies, volunteer and fundraiser information. We also have a private Facebook group just for you. This is a place where we can connect with the individuals within our support community and share ministry updates and requests in a more timely, personal manner.  
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