Category Archives: Life Upside Down

Half-Blind

It’s really difficult to see who you really are everyday, like being half blind.

Other people see you through the lens of their hurts and experiences, and some only see a sliver of who you are, never seeing you outside that situation. People often say, “Ask someone what they think about you?,” but that’s dangerous. What they say may not be true.

Words tear down as well as build up, and the blindness we all have makes us unable to see our own faults. I can see my strengths, and almost forget my weaknesses. Not recognizing my weaknesses can make me lack compassion to others, and recognizing my weaknesses gives me humbleness before God.

That is a thing I seek–to be humble and to be the person God wants me to be, and I pray that all the time.

Definition of Righteousness

Romans 10:10

10 Trusting with the heart leads to righteousness, and confessing with the mouth leads to salvation.

When asked at my Bible Study what Righteousness meant, it was defined as, “Right standing with God.” Right standing with God can feel like a process. I came to Christ in 2002, but I came dirty, thirsting, and struggling.

It took time, and I am still growing from when I and my husband became a disciple of Christ. Right standing with God is a process of one good decision at a time. Like what we studied last week of the woman at the well. She had five husbands and the one with her at the time was not her husband (John 4).

Sin is a struggle. As a young, single adult, I struggled being right with God. I sought Him all my life. So when someone is living with someone or sleeping with them, they have my compassion. The temptation is difficult. But to stop struggling is worse. You should continue fighting for what is right. So you may mess up.

But tomorrow is a new day to begin anew. To try again. Older Christians take for granted sometimes the strength new Christians don’t yet have that time and prayer in the Word gives. So, I believe, right standing with God is a process; even a long process as we grow in Him.

Share This and Make a Difference

Widgets are set up on this site so people can contribute whatever amount to a specific need, and partner with us in this amazing opportunity to make a difference in the world.

purpose

In these difficult economic times, I completely understand that you can’t donate, but would ask then that you share this link with your friends in your emails or on your social media or blogs. If you do this, let me know so I can give you a public thank you on all social media sites. This is handy if you have a blog as I will also promote your blog or book for doing so! So share this link and help a friend out: www.gofundme.com/TRCMagazine

Personal Apathy

Today I am thinking about personal apathy. What if we, as Christians, did something different in our lives? Rather than hang out with our usual crowd on Sunday mornings, why not look around and get to know someone new? What if, after we ‘liked’ something a friend did or said, that we followed up on that relationship with something physical–a gift, a visit, or maybe a phone call or a text?

I came across Kyle Tennant’s book, Unfriend Yourself: Three Days to Detox, Discern, and Decide About Social Media, and I am tempted to read it. In the interview (that I can’t find again), he said something about social media making us relationally lazy.

What struck me was this:

“Without throwing the baby out with the bathwater, Kyle challenges the Christian to a God-honoring approach to social media involvement. Well researched and thought through, Unfriend Yourself avoids the emotional arguments and instead presents a provocative ‘must read’ for any students, young adults, and generations beyond who want to be responsible in approaching social media from a biblical worldview.” – Dr. Bob MacRae, Professor of Youth Ministry at Moody Bible Institute

I think it’s something I will put on my to-read list on Goodreads. Last year, I recognized my own apathy in regards to missions. Everyone has an area in their life where apathy reigns in silence. You may not know it, like I did not know my own apathy, and maybe it’s time to see.

 

 

Forbidden Questions

thepast1My friends and I were discussing the social gospel. I am friends with people who dive whole-heartily into social justice, but the homeless situation isn’t changing. The entitlement attitude is getting more aggressive.

Another friend says poverty is more than a physical lack. There’s poverty in spirit. Because I don’t serve with the homeless, I can’t write on that, but I will say this:

How come, when a Christian questions a ministry like that, people get offended, defensive, and even go so far as to boycott or call another Christian a non-Christian? These are forbidden questions one doesn’t ask unless among close friends in whispers. You risk people being mean to you because you asked. So people like us watch the problem get worse.

Some stories come out that encourage me, like a man looking for work to get out of his homelessness. I want to help that man. Or how people in a church help out a widow. Or how someone turns away from a lesbian lifestyle to live for Christ. Or how someone gets a free bike so he could get to his job.

What if everyone who gave financial help required the person asking for it to put in “community service,” like helping someone else with a physical need or assigning them to work so many hours in some kind of volunteer position?

So many beautiful places, like San Diego and Denver, are becoming a safety hazard and a garbage heap. Pan handlers dot the beach front in San Diego. Downtown Denver, with it’s beautiful architecture, has hundreds of homeless. The bathrooms in Balboa Park are filled with trash, chained shut and unusable. When people talk about banning homeless, it isn’t because they are cold-hearted, but the homeless have caused a situation. The laws and culture protect them. The charity programs and welfare have made the life ideal. Many refuse to leave that lifestyle.

There are needs out in our world, and I can’t help but wonder if we could change the work ethic in our country by allowing people to have this discussion and talk about possible solutions, instead of getting angry, shouting them to silence, and worsening the poverty situation. Of course, I’m not talking about the mentally challenged, and I’m not saying abandon someone entirely at all.

I like what Benjamin Franklin said (emphasis mine):

I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth I travelled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”

Share your thoughts and your stories. How can we change the work ethic in America? How can we fight poverty?

#222Prayers Thankful For New Things

According to the Dake Annotated Reference Bible-KJV-Large Print, there are 176 prayers in the Old Testament and 46 prayers in the New Testament. I first heard about this reference (found here) during a prayer meeting. For the next several Sundays I will post a prayer in regards to each section of scripture mentioned until I have gone through all 222 prayers.

Read Ezra 7:27-28

Yesterday, my husband and I, and a group made our way up Mt. Humphreys in Northern Arizona during one of our bad weather days. I am thankful for what God did during this fundraiser and thank you for being a part of it. Please enjoy the pictures on this beautiful Sunday morning!

 

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Please go to ISF and see this wonderful missions organization!

*Affiliate Links.

 

Growing in The Waiting

Waiting is probably the hardest thing to do, and yet, it is what God throws my way each time. Whether it’s waiting at three red lights in a row, in line at the grocery store as a seventy-something year old woman searches for that dime because she doesn’t want change, or for the two people crossing the crosswalk to realize there’s a car waiting. The antidote to my impatience is waiting.

In the waiting, growth happens. I am reminded of the song, “I will worship while I’m waiting.”  I now sing that in my head every time I wait, turning my focus from the waiting and the irritation or wondering of it, to Jesus. Writers wait for a rejection or acceptance. People wait for word on that job promotion. Others are waiting for their current storm to pass.

Enjoy the music video of that song as you wait for whatever it is you are waiting to happen. May I pray for you?

Lord Jesus, Please help us grow in the waiting. Help us to see your footprints so we know what direction to go in this crazy world, and not be lulled into complacency. In Jesus Name, Amen.

It’s Not About Numbers

God is leading me to become a

Churches worry about numbers.

Bloggers worry about numbers.

It’s good to show that kind of growth, but our main concern and focus should be on the people we retain on our blog and in our church. That’s where I am at now. I am working on growing my platform, but in calling it a platform, I can forget the humanity of it. In fact, I don’t publish stories that are controversial if I am only publishing it to be controversial and to grow my numbers. I am focusing on you as a person.

In social media speak, you are my neighbor. I care about your problems.

In 2015, I will change from this blog to http://www.cataclysmmissionsintl.com because blogging here at Life Upside Down is ending. That part of my life is done. I look at life upside down still, but I have grown, healed, and moved on. My intentions are still to help those that struggle, but my mission has changed.

I want to mobilize people to get online and befriend others. I want to educate people. I want to reach those who have been hurt by church and take their hand to help them walk back to real life church whether its a house church or a traditional church. I want to unite our Christian, Bible-only believing churches in solidarity. I want to teach them to forget about the color of the carpet, past hurts, and what kind of music might be playing, instead to focus on people and the message of Salvation, to grow as a Christian family.

So in 2015, you will find me at these three web addresses:

http://www.thehahnhuntinglodge.com (as I will continue to work on getting published)

http://www.therelevantchristianmagazine.com

http://www.cataclysmmissionsintl.com

Eventually, I would like to make Cataclysm Missions International a non-profit. I would like to work full time on all three websites so I can focus on my new mission more completely to educate and equip the believer while working at reaching the unbeliever with the message of Salvation.

But I need your help.

Non-profits don’t pay much in salary, and my husband and I live paycheck to paycheck with my current wage. Would you consider donating to my new mission?  Click here to learn more.