Saturday, August 23, 2014

Good Bye Face Book

This blog post is not intended to guilt people into closing their face book accounts.  What this post is about is my own exodus from a fictitious world where "friendship" is something that is cultivated with glib quotes, touched up photos, and "likes" given to affirm a very needy culture.  At this point I feel I must again point out that this post is not intended to insight feelings of indignation or guilt.  So if you're feeling offended, take a step back and draw in a deep breath, and allow yourself to comprehend that this is not about you.  This is my assessment of Face Book;

Several years ago a friend of mine told me about the world of Face Book and the wonders of being able to be "connected" with friends and family.  Having family and friends spread out across the USA, the possibilities for staying connected seemed hopeful.  But little did I know, the world of Face Book was more than it cracked up to be.  

My first Face Book account was a personal account with my name and the place where I lived fully visible for the purpose of letting everyone know that I was, indeed, the Amy that belonged to my family and friends.  But very quickly people I didn't know were asking to be connected (aka "friends").  

The number of "friends" I had kept climbing.  Some may be flattered or receive affirmation by having so many "friends" and take it as a show of other's actual interest.  But not me.  You see, with the befriending of people who didn't really know me, and also some whom I thought did know me, the ugly side of Face Book began to peek it's head.  Face Book became less about actually building up my relationships with family and friends and more about the constant challenge of wading through the shallowest of thoughts and reveries of people I didn't even know.  It seemed the world was hungry and thirsty for drama and that meaningful interaction or encouragement was very rare. 

Through the years there have been several bible verses that have really stuck with me.  One passage in particular has been 1 Thessalonians 4:11;

"But we urge you, brethren, to excel still more (in love), and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you."

My family and I live on a small farm three and a half miles from the nearest town.  It has been a very good place to "make it our ambition to lead a quiet life, work with our hands and mind our own business".  And we have been very happy in our small little paradise.  We intentionally haven't spent much time "in town" for the simple reason that "minding our own business" has taken a priority over the limited benefits of the activities taking place there.  

Now, before you jump to a wrong conclusion, I want you to know that our children have been privileged to be a part of church activities, the local homeschool group, act in plays, participate in music festivals and competitions and travel and sing throughout our many years of camp and music ministries.  I bring this up simply for the fact that I know (from experience) that there are some who haven't yet learned to "mind their own business", who would weigh in with their condemnation, casting aspersions about our family for hiding away on our farm and not "socializing" our children.  For those who are being so tempted right now, just stop.  Look up Matthew 7:12 and do likewise. 

Back to my assessment; 

When I opened myself up to the world of Face Book I never realized my quiet life would be threatened.  But soon I realized that the purpose of Face Book is to get millions and millions of people to make it their ambition to mind other people's business while making their own business fodder for gossip.  

After a time of wading the waters of shallow thought with the masses, I thought that it might be good to begin sharing my thoughts on scripture passages from which I was learning, in hopes of sharing a status of more significance than the norm.  At first it seemed that people really responded well.  And many encouraged me to keep writing, telling me that my posts encouraged them throughout the day.  But after a short time of that, I began getting messages from others accusing me of "posting at" them.  

It was a strange and interesting social experience.  With one single post I could get several messages from various people accusing me of directing my thoughts and words "at" them.  Of course they were wrong.  But telling them this was futile, because people are more narcissistic than they realize and these people were convinced that my words and God's word, about which I was writing, were in fact solely directed at them personally.  No amount of reasoning seemed to alleviate the mounting animosity some people were having in response to my personal reflections on the scriptures I was reading. 

I thought to my self, "Enough of this nonsense".  I opened up a public page which didn't have the same capability of interacting personally with those who own private pages, and I began using it instead of my own private page.  I thought I had found the answer to the problem.  After all, if I couldn't see other's posts, those who made them couldn't accuse me of putting up my posts in response to the content they shared.  And since I make it a point to stay disconnected from the local town gossip and drama by keeping to myself on my quiet little farm, I thought for sure I would be able to share my thoughts with the face book world in peace.  It had great potential to be a good ministry.  I used my public page like a Pinterest board, pinning my thoughts and devotionals to it, simply out of love for the truth and an earnest desire to share with others in the quest for understanding scripture.  Nothing I posted had anything to do with the local town gossip or what ever the current drama happened to be.  I was out of the gossip loop because I like it that way.  I thought had found a way to live my quiet life, work with my hands and mind my own business while still being able to be a light of truth in the dark world of Face Book.  

However, that notion was short lived.  I found that rather than viewing my public page as a pin board for the things that had captured my own attention and interest (such as one would view a Pinterest wall), those who were hell bent upon villain-izing me remained quick to surmise a connection between my words and what ever drama was taking place in their own little circles.  And here's the amazing part; it wasn't the stereo typical "non-christians" who were raising this ruckus, as one would assume.  Rather, many who claim to be  "christians" were the ones dissected my words with a vengeance.  

I know I've written about this before, but I want to put this out there again.

Matthew 7:6 says,
"Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces."

For most of my life, when I read that verse, my mind would focus upon the "trampling" part.  That didn't seem so bad, I guess, because I don't really feel a need for other's approval.  But other people's Face Book behavior really made me realize the significance of the last part of that verse;

" and they will turn and tear you to pieces."

Yes, you are reading that correctly.  And what I can tell you from personal experience is that this is true.  After these naysayers were done trampling my words, they did indeed turn and try to shred my character, maligning me with false testimony and misrepresentations of who I am and what I think, that were based solely upon their speculations and their gossip. I guess they must have glossed over the ninth commandment.  

Reaching out to the Face Book community has opened my eyes to the nature of man in a way that I never was able to see previously.  What I realized is that people will naturally gravitate to the broad path, even when bearing the name of Christ.  And when bolstered by anonymity or secrecy, they will snoop, accuse, become indignant and act like little yipping dogs that relentlessly nip at the heels of who ever they get in their sights.  

I can honestly say that I've endeavored to be a godly person both on line and off.  I've diligently shared the truth of God's words with love and prayer in hopes of being an encouragement to those who use Face Book as a social forum.  But I have grown weary of the social norms of Face Book that make such wicked and divisive behavior acceptable.  For this reason, I've shut down my public Face Book page.  

I still want to write and share about what I'm learning, but in disconnecting from the venue of Face Book, I hope to distance myself even further from those who are incapable of reading my words without surmising insult or personal accusation.  Such contentious behavior has never been attractive to me, but I've put up with it for far to long, hoping the entire time that people would eventually see my heart and God's a little clearer through the devotionals I put up.  

God's word says;

Proverbs 18:24
"A man of too many friends comes to ruin..."

While pushing the need for many "friends", Face Book applauds the narcissism of our society and feeds into the folly of shallow thought and revery.  It's inferior substitution for actual relationships lends itself to the disillusionment and discouragement of many, while at the same time giving frequent opportunity for causing division and disunity.  While some may be able to glean from the use of it, I don't believe I've met one person who has been able do so without encountering divisive drama in their own lives or the lives of their "friends" at some time because of their involvement with Face Book.  After trying many ways and making many attempts to avoid the pettiness of others to no avail, I have personally chosen to withdraw from Face Book all together, and invest my time and attention elsewhere.   And God has blessed me with much peace because of it.

Many of you have given me the privilege of encouraging you and joining with you in prayer over various situations.  I am so thankful for that part of my Face Book ministry.    I am still willing and able to pray and answer questions if anyone has a need.  You can reach me at or  I am still interested in hearing from those of you who have a prayer request or a need for someone to listen or encourage.  May God bless you.


Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Conversation With An Atheist

Here is just a snippet of a conversation I had with an atheist about false gods; 

Jack- "You and I both would agree that Vishnu, the Hindu god, is just a made up god..." 

Me- "No, I wouldn't agree with that.  Vishnu, along with all the other 'gods' out there are actual demonically controlled 'gods' who are capable of doing miracles, giving signs and wonders, amazing the masses and they are even capable of giving a false sense of peace.  These 'gods' are deceivers who specialize in convincing the masses that they are worthy of worship...and they do it well."

God has said, "I am The Lord your God. You shall have no other gods before me." It is up to every man to make sure that the god who is being worshiped and served is truly God. His word describes His will and His commandments describe His standard of holiness.

Every compromise of God's word becomes the foundation for worshiping a false "god". When God's word is changed to suit the worshipper, they create a "god" in their own image...and a demon is sure to empower it.  This is the reason people have such faith in their gods. This is the reason people can come home from their time of worship feeling 'blessed' even though God's word is not preached and His Spirit is not worshiped.  

Demons are the 'gods' and they are real and they are powerful and they are convincing. Having a sense of comfort and peace does not indicate that God was present.  

Love The Lord God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.  We know Him by His Word.  But if a man changes God's Word to accomodate his personal belief system, he makes a god in the image he prefers...and therefore is not worship The Lord God.  

Friday, August 15, 2014


God does not say that drinking alcohol is wrong. But He does say that drunkenness is a sin, and I believe this includes being "buzzed".

For consideration, read 1 Corinthians 8:8-13. It speaks of food...but the same principle outlined here can be applied to the topic at hand.

"Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do. But take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. For if anyone sees you who have knowledge eating in an idol’s temple, will he not be encouraged, if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols? And so by your knowledge this weak person is destroyed, the brother for whom Christ died. Thus, sinning against your brothers and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if food makes my brother stumble, I will never eat meat, lest I make my brother stumble."

More scripture to consider is Romans 14:1-5

"Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind."

If I follow these teachings, then if my acceptance of drinking alcohol is tempting or causing someone else to stumble, or if it is being used to condone another's sin, I am to be considerate of that person and refrain from doing it in their presence. These people are weak in their faith, if they have faith at all, and for me to put this stumbling block before them is a sin.

But that person's weakness does not negate someone else's freedom. A Christian may participate in alcoholic consumption in the privacy of their own homes, or with other believers elsewhere, who do not have a weakness regarding the matter, as long as they are thoughtful and careful about those who are weaker.

It is not sinful for believers to partake as I've laid it out. This sometimes leads non Christians or weak Christians to accuse those who are free, of being hypocritical. It is definitely wrong of them to accuse a person in such a way. This is unjust judgment. There are many who's consciences are clear before God, and He has given them the freedom to enjoy these things without another's condemnation or accusation.

So, if you are a person who is free in your conscience to consume alcohol, then the only restrictions put upon you are that you are not to get drunk and you are not to enable someone else's sin or cause them to stumble with your freedom.

And conversely, someone who is weak in their faith is not allowed to dictate that other's not exercise their freedom, nor are they just in accusing them of hypocrisy.

Here is something to remember;

Romans 12:18
"If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all."

Romans 14:21-23

"It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles. The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and whatever is not from faith is sin."

In short;

Do not cause someone else to stumble, and do not impose your weakness upon another or accuse them of wrong of which they are not guilty.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Cryptic Messages

We've all seen them on Facebook. They're the "hook" that people often use to suck us into their world of drama. It can be quite comical, and sometimes embarrassing the way it's done. God never works like that. He doesn't depend on the wow factor of scandal or conflict to draw us in. And His message has remained the same throughout the ages. He says, "Seek Me".

We've probably all sung these words;

"You are my strength when I am weak.
 You are the treasure that I seek.
 You are my all in all."

These words often leave our lips during Sunday morning worship, but do they come from the genuine confession of our hearts that Jesus is the treasure...the ONLY treasure worth pursuing?

When God called Abram, He asked him to uproot himself and forsake everything a man could possibly hold dear on this earth.

Genesis 12:1 "The Lord had said to Abram, 'Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you.'"

And amazingly, Abram did so. He saw that GOD was the only true treasure and willingly abandoned everything in pursuit of Him.

Fast forward to when Jesus walked the earth and what do we see Jesus telling His disciples?

Matthew 16:24 "Then Jesus told his disciples, 'If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.'"

His call has never changed. He still desires that we would treasure Him above all other things in life. In fact, the first commandment is still the number one commandment;

"I am The Lord your God, you shall have no other gods before me"

or as Jesus said it,

"You shall love The Lord with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind"

With God there really aren't any cryptic messages. He is quite clear about what is MOST important to Him. And there is no scandalous wow factor, no drama, no desperate grasping for attention on His part. He simply gives His command, and waits for HIS will to become our treasure. Our only treasure.

With all the distractions in the world, the call is still amazingly clear. More than anything I want to see Jesus. I want to be known by Him. He is the treasure that I seek. He is my all in all.

Friday, August 1, 2014

The Long Journey

"What! Light is energy?" This was Elias(8) this morning as he was reading his 4th grade science text book.

"Mama, did I reduce this fraction right?" This came from Jediah(11).

"Mama, did you know I am good at coloring?" Camon asked as he colored his pictures.

And all the while the others are sitting quietly doing their lessons.

I've been home educating my children from the beginning. There have been many ups and downs during the years, but honestly what has been my greatest challenge as a mother has also proven to be one of my greatest joys.

Not only do I give them an academic education. I get to include in their curriculum, biblical studies and character training in godliness. These are so important to my husband and I that we've pursued this homeschooling endeavor with passion and conviction.

Don't get me wrong. There are definitely days when I've questioned my sanity. The thought of freeing up my days by sending my kids to school is sometimes very tempting. I think of all the things I could get done around the house, or the freedom I'd have to go and visit at the coffee shop in the middle of the morning and I find myself questioning, "why am I doing this?". Then I remember.

I have these children for just a short little time, and then they are gone. The older I get the shorter the days seem to be. And the years as well, pass by so quickly that I find myself wondering where they've gone. Emma is soon to graduate, yet to me, it feels like we just began. I often ask myself, "Did I teach her the right things? Did I give her a good foundation?" and most importantly, "have I done my very best to teach her to fear and know The Lord?"

I know that all things are in the hands of God, but as a mother my earnest desire is to hear my Father say to me, "Well done thou good and faithful servant!". So, I press on one day at a time. And in doing this, I've learned to look for the small things that encourage me to keep going. The small little discoveries like the fact that light is energy, become almost magical when you see the wonder in their eyes. But even more so engaging is the wonder I see in their eyes when they realize that all the great and amazing things in their science text books point to "one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." (Ephesians 4:6) and that this God loves them dearly.

I'm just thinking today, about the "long" journey this endeavor seemed to be at first. And I'm remembering the challenging days when I wanted to give up and hand my children over to the "professionals". But in spite of the difficulties, I do not regret this undertaking.  It has been the most important investment of my life, because I've been pouring unquestioned truth into my children from their infancy. And I know that my efforts have not been in vain.

Not every mother has taken the same path I have. If you are on a different path, do not feel judged by me. I only do what God has called me to do. But if you are a home schooling mom, let me encourage you today:

"be not weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Galatians 6:9

This verse has been a great encouragement to me. I hope it is an encouragement to you as well.