April Fools Challenge Wrap-up

cattleHe owns the cattle on a thousand hills

We arrived back in Indianapolis on April 15th and ended our 14 day April Fools Challenge. We did not reach of our goal of being fully funded before we arrived.  In fact, we only gained $100 in pledges during that time.  That being said I feel like It was a great success in revealing my heart and desire to control. It showed me just how much I am prone to doubt that God will provided in His perfect timing.

lilyConsider the lilies of the field. (Matthew 6:28-34)

I also think when people see $3900 a month still needed they think like I often do, “That is a huge amount of money.  How can that happen?”  Then maybe they think that the $5 a month that they could give will not make much of a difference.  The truth is, that every pledge, no matter how big or small, ‘represents a partnership filled with prayer.  Each partner, wether church or individual, is someone praying for what God is doing and will do in Perth.  Each partner is providing the financial resources needed to accomplish God’s purposes in Perth.


Does not reaching our goal to be fully funded before arriving back in Indy change our desire to depart for Perth in June?  No,  We still believe that June is the best time for us to arrive.  This gives us a month in Perth before the Australia Team Planning retreat and the Pacific Area retreat at the end of July in Malaysia.  This is a time of future thinking for Australia that will be important for Shannon and I to be present at.  The retreat also gives our family, especially our children, the opportunity to connect with all the Third Culture Children who are already on the field with their families in the Asia-Pacific region.  This connection is important for their adjustment to the new life that God is calling our family too.  Arriving during the Australian winter also gives us time to build relationships  (about 6 months) without having folks go on holiday.  The more consistent  time together with our growing core group will provide stability and energy for our launch.  This also gives us about 6 months before the new school year to determine what will be the best educational decision for our girls.  June is also important for us stateside.  When we made the decision to follow God’s call to Perth we wanted to put everything we had into it.  This meant putting stuff in storage and hitting the road.  We moved out of our house in September of last year in order to prepare for this departure.  Living in an RV has given us the ability to partner raise as a family and see the country.  We return the RV at the end of May.  This leaves us with out a  permanent place to live when June arrives.  God is good to provide friends who will host us and family willing to have us stay with them but that is only a temporary solution. We believe God has already prepared the way of our departure in June and now we are waiting to see it accomplished.

qantas plane

Join the team.  Any size monthly pledge will help us arrive in June. Follow the link to set up your pledge and donation today.  If you have questions or want to talk please contact us at lee@hinkledownunder.com

Secure Donation Site

Marsupial of the Day: Day 4

Join our team and be a 


  Edit Wombat=  $150a month

Five fun facts about wombats

  • Wombats are native toAustralia 
  • There are two types of wombats.  The bare-nose or the hairy-nose
  • Few Australians have a seen a wombat in the wild
  • Wombats look like a miniature bear
  • Wombats can live in burrows that are 30 meters (100 feet) deep.

Below are links to our secure donation site or our pledge card if you are ready to join the team and become a Wombat. If so, please let us know that you are joining by e-mailing me at lee@hinkledownunder.com so we can add you to the team and get closer to 100% of our budget. 

Pledge Card      Secure Donation Site

Marsupial of the Day. Day 3

Join our team and be a 


Wallaby= $100 a month

Five fun facts about wallabies:

  • There are 30 species of wallabies
  • A group of wallabies is called a mob
  • Wallabies are nocturnal
  • Wallaby pregnancy last 32 days
  • Wallaby moms produce two types of milk

Below are links to our secure donation site or our pledge card if you are ready to join the team and become a Wallaby. If so, please let us know that you are joining by e-mailing me at lee@hinkledownunder.com so we can add you to the team and get closer to 100% of our budget. 

Pledge Card      Secure Donation Site

Marsupial of the Day! Day 2

Join our team and be a


Koala= $75 a month 

 Five Fun Facts about Koalas from the Middles (Reagan and Georgia)

  1. Koalas spends 3 hours a day eating.
  2. Koalas spend 18 hours a day sleeping.
  3. Koalas have fingerprints.
  4. Koalas rarely drink water. Their name is derived from an ancient aboriginal word for “no drink”
  5. Koalas live, eat, sleep in eucalyptus trees. They don’t leave a tree unless they need to move to a new tree.

Below are links to our secure donation site or our pledge card if you are ready to join the team and become a Koala. If so, please let us know that you are joining by e-mailing me at lee@hinkledownunder.com so we can add you to the team and get closer to 100% of our budget. 

Pledge Card      Secure Donation Site

Southern Cross

Last night I was in Goodland, KS and was able to look a clear evening sky.  The stars were amazing.  There was no light pollution so I could see so many stars.  I realized that  by God’s grace our family will be looking at a completely different sky in a few months.  A sky that features the Southern Cross.  The same cross featured on the Australian flag.    

It called to mind Psalm 19

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy. Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them, and there is nothing hidden from its heat. The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the Lord are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward. Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. (‭Psalm‬ ‭19‬:‭1-14‬ ESV)

May we declare the glory of God and His handiwork like the sky.  No matter what hemisphere you are gazing upon it. 

Marsupial of the Day!

Join our Team and be a


Kangaroo= $50 a month

Five Fun Facts about Kangaroos from the Middles (Reagan and Georgia)

  1. Kangaroos like to sleep on their backs.
  2. Joeys (baby kangaroos) when scared will dive head first into their mothers pouch.
  3. Kangaroos are the size of a jelly bean when they are born.
  4. Kangaroos can’t go backwards.
  5. Kangaroos can swim!

Below are links to our secure donation site or our pledge card if you are ready to join the team and become a Kangaroo. If so, please let us know that you are joining by e-mailing me at lee@hinkledownunder.com so we can add you to the team and get closer to 100% of our budget.

Pledge Card      Secure Donation Site

Stuck in a Moment


Do you every feel like you are stuck in a moment?  Do you look around and think, “how did I get here?  This is not what I saw coming?”  

I have been feeling like that a little the last couple of days.  I feel stuck.  I have seen amazing things.  I have seen God transform my stoic and hard heart into one of flesh and compassion. But today, I feel stuck.  Not sure if I can still trust.  Not sure God knows best.  

I have even wondered if the April Fools Challenge is my fleshiness breaking into God’s work and me trying to control.  It might be.  I sometimes feel like I need to “get ahead of the curve” on what God wants to accomplish.  That is my usual moment of stuckness.  

Philippians 3: 12 says, “not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.”

This is a challenge and great assurance. My moment will pass because I will keep pressing own.  Not because I can do it or I know best.  I can press own and be moved from my moment because Christ has made me his own.  I am His.  He takes me at whatever moment and holds me.  He takes me in my stuckness, in my turning my back or running ahead and He holds me.  

We are His!

PS.  The lyrics of the song really don’t have anything much to do with the post except for the title.  I just like the U2 song and included it.  

One Of A Kind

one thing being on the road will show you is that everyone, even the children in the same family with the same mother and father, are unique.  Seems pretty obvious but the reality is that in our hearts we would really prefer people to be uniformed as long as they are uniformed to who we are.  Each of our children have responded to our trip, our transitions and each moment of each day in their own unique way.  Sometimes it is beautiful and at other times it is completely frustrating.  

But they are individuals, created by God to glorify Him and enjoy Him.  He designed them.  He knows them better than I do.  He holds who they are in His hands.  They are special and created for a purpose. I am excited to see what that is beyond how God works through them to help make me more Christ-like.  

It can be said that God’s purposes don’t need our uniqueness.  Some even say that God doesn’t need us to bring about What He wants to accomplish.  Paul may have a different opinion.  Ephesians 2:10 tells us that, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”  God created us for something specific and that thing must be tied into a His plan.

I think we say that God doesn’t need us because we recognize our hearts.  Instead of being humbled by being uniquely made by God we move to pride in our uniqueness and not grateful pride but arrogant, “everyone should be so lucky to be like me” pride.  There is a difference.  So, in order to protect ourselves from this heart corruption we tell ourselves that God really doesn’t need us.  

We have a tendency to believe that we are indespinsible.  The truth is we are dispensible. Things could take place without us.  The party could go on without us showing up.  But we are not replaceable.  We are uniquely created and gifted by God to accomplish the purposes He has set out for us in order for us to bring Him Glory and enjoy Him forever.  

We are not indespinsible but we are irreplaceable. 

The Day After

Doesn’t the day after a big event seem anti-climatic.  You just lived through or witnessed an amazing event and the next day is back to the old hum drum of life.  

Not much is said about the day after the resurrection of Jesus and His appearances in the Gospels.  Matthew lets us know that He wanted to meet the brothers (disciples) in Galilee by meeting Mary and Mary Magdalene on the road after they had seen the empty tomb.  We get insight to a conspiracy and then the eleven go to Galilee to worship Jesus and be given the great commission. (Matthew 28)

Luke lets us know that when the ladies reported the empty tomb Peter jumped up and ran to the empty tomb and was amazed.  Jesus then walked along with two men for a while and shared dinner with them and at that moment they saw who He truly was and He vanished.  They ran to be with the eleven and Jesus showed up there to open their minds to the Scripture, remove their doubts and give them a charge before ascending.  In Acts we know that Jesus appeared to them for 40 days.

Mark, depending on what manuscripts you trust, ends rather abruptly with the women going back towards the disciples with the command to have them meet Jesus in Galilee  with fear, trembling and amazement.  (Mark 16)  or it ends with a section of scripture that you rarely hear preached from were the disciples do not believe the account of Mary or two men.  Then Jesus appears to the disciples and rebukes their hard hearts and unbelief before giving a commission to them.

John provides us with a little more with Jesus appearing to Mary Magdalene, then  to 10 of the disciples because Thomas was not there.  Eight days later Jesus shows up for Thomas (and for us).  Then John tells us that after Jesus had revealed Himself to them some time later Peter decided to go fishing and Jesus appears again and restores Peter.  (John 20-21) 

No real word about the day after but in John we see at some point Peter was needing some stability or was bored or hungry or decided to return to his old occupation as a fisherman.  For whatever reason he fishes with his friends, something he had done a lot of in his life and Jesus meets him there.  

Yesterday may have been a high point in your walk with God, in this journey He has prepared for you.  Easter can do that.  But remember when you are feeling like it is the everyday, that nothing has changed, Jesus is there as well.  He is there to show you, just like He did Peter that everything has changed.  Jesus said, “I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20

So everyday, in all that we do, He is Emmanuel, God with us. He pursues us even when our lives come down so far that we return to our former safe place.  He prepares us a feast and brings us back to His side.

Easter on the Road

I am stalking Redeemer In Indianapolis this Easter morning on Instagram and Facebook trolling for pictures of the sanctuary.  It is hard to be away from this place, this centering force in our lives during Easter.  There is always something special and exciting taking place to remind and point us, all of who we are, toward the joyous miracle and power of Christ resurrection.  Credit Redeemer’s facebook page for the photo.   

 It has been gray and dark during Lent but today it is alive and free.  How exciting.  How it draws us into our place in God’s magnificent story.  He has  taken us from darkness into His light, into the kingdom of His beloved Son (Colossians 1:13-14).

It is also good to be away from this place.  It is preparing our hearts for the days ahead, when we will be with a new community (which is still part of this community) in Perth.  We are looking forward to see how God draws all the creative energy and beauty that is within His children in Perth to depict and celebrate the Resurrection.  We are excited about Easter brunch with this new (yet old) community.  This family that God is building and will weave together in a tapestry of His love.  But Easter at Redeemer Indianapolis is special and will always be missed.

We are glad to be in Seattle at Green Lake this morning.  This placed helped form the Partains and Dorseys.  Two families that have been instrumental in God’s plan for our family.  Sarah Partain said to us that if she couldn’t be at Reseemer she would want to be here.  

I feel the same except if I can’t be in Perth celebrating Easter than I am glad to be at a Church that God has worked in to make the power of the Resurrection  real in our lives.