#160: Living Life From The Refuge

#160: Living Life From The Refuge

#160: Living Life From The Refuge

by HopeNet Radio | Podcast

Who’s on this episode?

Jeff Strommen @jstrommen | Dave Wager @wagerdaw | Jason Kemper @kempster220

Subscribe & Support the Podcast!

iTunes | Google Play | Stitcher | Tune In Radio

Make sure to leave a ★★★★★ review and consider supporting the show.

Show Notes

Where is your place of refuge? Every one of us has to have a place of safety, calm, stability. But what is concerning is how few we make use of it. Or rather — Him.

God is our refuge.

The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety. Psalm 18


Psalm 91

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.

For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at your side, though ten thousand are dying around you, these evils will not touch you.

Just open your eyes, and see how the wicked are punished. If you make the Lord your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter, no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home.

For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone. You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!

The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation.”



Mike Calhoun’s Article on the Tall Poppy Syndrome

Share your story!

13 + 5 =

#135: We Are Going To Make It

#135: We Are Going To Make It

Who’s on this episode?

Jeff Strommen @jstrommen | Dave Wager @wagerdaw | Terra Kay @terrakfree

On this Father’s Day, we are thinking of the fathers in Orlando grieving the loss of their son or daughter. The headlines rip at the heart of every father of the senseless shootings of Christina Grimmie and the patrons at Pulse, and the toddler killed by an alligator at Walt Disney World.

Subscribe & Support the Podcast

Never miss an episode. Subscribe to the podcast for free on iTunes, Google PlayStitcher and Tune In Radio! Make sure to leave a ★★★★★ review and consider supporting the show.


Show Notes

Pulse shooting in Orlando is being called the biggest terror attack on the US since 9/11. How do we process tragedy like this as it impacts an entire nation? Here are 5 ways Christians can respond

The truth is, we don’t really know why the shootings happened, except that we live in a world full of sin around people who have their eyes set on destruction. Some think it had something to do with ISIS or simply out of hatred for LGBT people. Who knows, really? These shootings have no rationale. And how we respond is critically important. Our only remedy is to call this nation back to God.


Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu gave an appropriate response in light of the attack on Pulse.



[threecol_one]elisabethelliot[/threecol_one] [threecol_two_last]

Remembering Elisabeth Elliot and her legacy despite living through tragedy

Books by Elisabeth Elliot

Elisabeth Elliot was one of the most influential Christian women of our time. For a half century, her best selling books, timeless teachings and courageous faith have influenced believers and seekers of Jesus Christ throughout the world. She used her experiences as a daughter, wife, mother, widow, and missionary to bring the message of Christ to countless women and men around the world.

Read John Piper’s thoughts in the days after she passed in 2015.[/threecol_two_last]


Check it out

Ephesians 5 | Titus 3


There are enough things that divide us, that create a barrier of connection and affect interpersonal relationships. If tragedy has any upside, it’s that those barriers can come down and we can mourn with those who mourn. Differences don’t matter. Love does. Love matters. And love will win. Faith, hope and love remain. The greatest of these is love. And the truth is, we will get through. We are going to make it. -Jeff

#107: America Needs Refugees

#107: America Needs Refugees

On this episode

Jeff Strommen @jstrommen | Dave Wager @wagerdaw | Jason @kempster220 | Terra Kay @terrakfree | Bill, Homeland Security

Could it be that the way to change a generation plagued by narcissism, consumerism and apathy is dependent on our response to refugees coming to America?

In the recent months, there has been growing discussion in news media and on social media around refugees coming to America from nations like Syria, Iraq and other parts of the Middle East. After the attack that happened in Paris, there has been growing concern that refugees with violent ulterior motives will be coming to America. Not only that, but there are many refugees who have been resettled in neighborhoods in the US. So, what are Christians to do? Who are these refugees and how are we to respond to them?

As Christians are torn on this issue, Jeff and Dave welcome a a couple of guests with distinguished views on the issue of refugee resettlement to shed some light on the tension we face. One thing is certain – this next generation needs to care about

Subscribe & Support the Podcast

Never miss an episode. Subscribe to the podcast for free on iTunes, Stitcher and Tune In Radio! Make sure to leave a ★★★★★ review and consider a small gift.


Guests on this episode

Terra Kay, World Relief Fox Valley

Come hear about ways you can volunteer and serve refugees in Northeast Wisconsin at an upcoming Volunteer Information Night!

Terra is the Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator at World Relief Fox Valley. Their office has resettled over 130 refugees this year and is looking for ways to get Christians and the Church to reach out to some of the most vulnerable people of our society.


Bill, Homeland Security

People are exploiting gaps in the vetting process of refugees that makes it difficult to ensure that everyone coming in as a refugee is safe to resettle in our local communities. There is a lot going on behind the scenes surrounding the types of people coming as refugees that concern our national security.


The Big Idea

The vast majority of refugees coming to America get some support up front, but many times go forgotten because it’s assumed that they’ve adjusted to American way of life. But this is often not the case. And it’s the Church’s job to care for the needs of the most vulnerable members of our society, including refugees. Or simply put:

This is a different kind of topic for us to cover because there is so much media attention around the issue of resettling refugees. It’s complex, yet simple. In its purest form, a refugee is someone who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster.

While some would exploit the process to cause harm to Americans, the vast majority of refugees who have come through the process over the last 70 years have come to seek refuge from the storms of life and perils of evil. Some move thousands of miles away from “home” to find safety and security. Imagine for a moment that you were one of them.


Something to consider

Sodom’s Destruction as explained in Ezekiel

Ezekiel 16:48 // As surely as I live, says the Sovereign LORD, Sodom and her daughters were never as wicked as you and your daughters. Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door. She was proud and committed detestable sins, so I wiped her out, as you have seen.

The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Volume 6: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel

Sodom’s chief sin had been pride and self-exaltation. This stemmed from her abundant materialism (food), given to her from God (Gen 13:10), which had resulted in false security, apathy, a luxurious life of ease, and the corollary disdain and neglect of the poor and needy (v.49). This material ease fostered sexual perversion (Gen 13:13; 18:20; 19:4–5). This passage stands as both an exhortation and a warning against such wickedness and life styles today. As evil as Sodom was, she did not begin to do evil like Jerusalem. (Jeremiah described how the prophets of Jerusalem committed adultery, lied, and encouraged evildoers so that none turned from their wickedness, just like Sodom [Jer 23:14; cf. 2 Kings 15:37; 16:6; 24:2; 2 Chronicles 28:18–19; Isa 3:9; Ezek 22:15].)

In light of this passage, what is the Christian’s responsibility to refugees? Could the same words said about Jerusalem be synonymous to life in America? Is America not hospitable enough to care for the most vulnerable in our society? Can Christians do more for refugees?


Helpful Links & Infographs

Refugee Mental Health | This is a really eye-opening slideshow outlining the realities faced by refugees.

Christian Response to Refugees (Jesus Creed Blog)

Carson says Syrian refugees don’t want to come to US (FoxNews.com)

More than half the nation’s governors say Syrian refugees not welcome (CNN.com)


Infograph via worldreliefresponds.com

#093: Turtles, Tolerance, and Truth

#093: Turtles, Tolerance, and Truth

Helping others get out of their fear-induced shells can be difficult work. This week, Jeff and Dave talk about tackling rejection. We’ve all been left out or betrayed by ones closest to us. The typical response to rejection is by withdrawing into our shell to keep us from further hurt. It’s the same thing turtles do when a threat is present. Anyone who’s done this knows you can only stay in your shell for so long before it becomes dangerous to our health. At some point we have to get out of our shell. But how? Who will accept me for me?

Subscribe & Support the Podcast

Never miss an episode. Subscribe to the podcast for free on iTunes, Stitcher and Tune In Radio! Make sure to leave a ★★★★★ review and consider a small gift.


The Notes

Are you needed or wanted? Find out on the previous episode.


There are times when everybody feels rejected. There are times we are rejected for whatever reason. But if you’re going into your shell, go in there to think. Don’t go in there to stay. -DW

Those who stay in their shell too long will begin to live in a pretend world. A pretend world makes you a slave to your feelings, to other people, and ultimately to emotional disorder. Instead, think about what makes you inherently you. Think about those around you who you know love you. Think about Scripture and how God sees you.


If you are going through life hoping and praying that someone would need you, I think you’re hoping and praying to stay sick because I don’t think that’s gonna happen in a realistic world. And if it does, then what you’ve done is surrounded yourself with people around you that are codependent on you, and that isn’t healthy. -DW

If you have tied your performance to being needed, since there is no way for you to be needed, you get frustrated and eventually you admit to yourself that you’re not needed. And since you’ve spent your whole life trying to be needed, you end up in a state of mind you can’t get out of on your own. You’ve created a paradox and a conflict within the core of your being that must be resolved.

[Tweet “When you take on God’s characteristics of being needed, you end up miserable. @wagerdaw #HNRTB”]

I’m not getting rid of you, Ancient Lawnmower. I’m taking care of you, man. We’re gonna go through this together. -DW

We can choose to keep “upgrading friends” and trading in bosses and BFFs our whole life and still end up miserable. The key is to be patient with people, but we don’t have to be tolerant of actions that are rude, disrespectful or just plain evil. Sometimes, the answer is to stay and fight for a relationship. I think that too often we run when a relationship gets difficult. We hide when we should really lean in and listen.

#009: Christians are afraid of Halloween? #HNR

#009: Christians are afraid of Halloween? #HNR

#009: Christians are afraid of Halloween? #HNR

by HopeNet Radio | Podcast

Who’s on this episode?

Jeff Strommen @jstrommen
Dave Wager @wagerdaw

As I drive through neighborhoods this time of year, I see witches, ghosts, skeletons, black cats, zombies and pumpkins carved into monsters. Tombstones decorate front yards with white, fuzzy spider webs. Some are just downright spooky!

All the costumes and candy aside, this is a really dark time of year. And if we’re not wise, it can be downright demonic. Halloween is really not a Christian sort of holiday. You could make a case as to why Christians should not participate in it since it has such dark spiritual overtones to it. In fact, that argument has already been hashed out pretty well already. Dave and I want to take a different approach and ask questions that steer the conversation to talk evangelism. Spiritual things matter. Everybody is searching for answers to things they can’t explain.

Subscribe & Support the Podcast!

iTunes | Google Play | Stitcher | Tune In Radio

Make sure to leave a ★★★★★ review and consider supporting the show.

Show Notes

In day-to-day conversation, how often do you talk about angels or demons? Probably very little if you’re like me. Here are some good discussion starters for tonight…

+ What’s the big deal about Halloween anyway?
+ Why is our society enamored with dark spiritual things (ie. ghosts, witches, goblins, zombies, etc)?
+ How do we recognize demonic spiritual influence in our lives?
+ Should we even talk about such demonic things, for they could bring doom and gloom on us?
+ What does it mean to be spiritually superstitious?
+ How can Christians use Halloween to be evangelistic?

Become a Coach
Get information on Q-Drive

Links from the show

CT – Halloween
Halloween and Leaving the Light On

BillyGraham.org on Halloween

Share your story!

15 + 14 =