So What’s the deal?
The earliest Christians were different than their surrounding culture. Their lives were distinctly marked by an unwavering hope in a new king who was turning the world and its values upside down. Wherever these Christians went, the hurting were healed, the outsiders brought near, and the good news message about this King was boldly proclaimed. They loved extravagantly, even those who hated them. Their message was received by some, but despised and rejected by many. Ultimately, these first Christians considered everything the world had given them as insignificant, compared to the high privilege of knowing Jesus Christ as their Master and King.
Jesus invites us into a new, yet ancient way of living: Upside Down. The wise are foolish. The rich are poor. The first will be last. Those who leave everything gain it all back and more. Let’s turn life on it’s head. Together. It’s time to start living upside down.
These men who have turned the world upside down have come here. They are all acting against the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus. Acts 17:6
What would happen?
What would happen if you and the students you are influencing began a few new practices that looked Upside Down to the pattern of the world around us? Would our campus be changed? Would we be changed? We want to help you take the first step. Take a look at the following Upside Down practices. This is your starting point. If you’ve got an even better ideas, go for it. Share that idea with us.
Upside Down Stories
When something is supremely beautiful in our life, we share it. Your story of how Christ has changed your life is one of the most powerful ways to point others to Christ and his supreme beauty. Technology has put 1,000 friends right in front of us. In a world where everyone posts our “ideal self,” what if we posted a short video of how Jesus Christ “flipped” our perspectives and changed us? What if we posted over 100 Upside Down Stories on Facebook? Imagine the collective power.
We want to give you a couple guidelines on how to tell PART of your story well.
- This isn’t going to be an “I grew up in a Christian family and now my life is better with Jesus” story. We’ll help you avoid the cliches and share a minute or two of your life with power.
- Do this with your community group or in coaching! Let’s use these stories to grow deeper with each other.
- Pretty much everything you need is here: The Easy Breezy Guide to sharing, shooting, and posting Upside Down Stories
- new! Need help telling your story? You’ll want this one page resource.
Oct 20 – 31st
- we would love to have over 100 stories posted on Facebook during these two weeks.
Upside Down Initiatives
*denotes ideal for a community group
*denotes ideal for coaching
* Upside down love (article). There is a difference between loving someone and accepting their harmful behavior.
*upside down confession (article). In a world that says “no regrets” we want to be people who are quick to admit wrong—first with God, then with others.
*The 6 reasons we don’t turn anything upside down (coming soon). The things that sideline us from the mission.
**Pray for 3. (downloadable prayer card coming this week) The earliest Christians were devoted to prayer. The Lord daily added to their numbers. Maybe they regularly prayed for their friends and enemies by name. Now is your chance to name three people whose names will always bookmark your Bible.
**Upside down People Meet men and women who have considered everything the world had given them as insignificant, compared to the high privilege of Knowing Jesus Christ as their Master and King.
40,000 Steps of Prayer 400,000 steps of prayer. We’ve already had a community group push us over 40,000 steps! Let’s shoot for 10x the number of steps! You can hit up Lori McMillan with an update on the approximate number of steps You have taken.
- LeAnn’s Group: 29,730
- Cailey Pittman’s group: 16,800
What if we, together, beg Jesus to “get dirty” on our campus? What if we ask Him to astonishing us? What if we took 40,000 steps as a movement of prayer, depending on the God of the universe to take hold of App. State?
*An unlikely banquet
It’s quite possible that the fastest way to a college student’s heart is through their stomach. The earliest Christians were famous for their dinner parties. In a world where food was viewed as a personal possession, they broke bread and gave it away. Jesus gives us an upside down command: When you throw a dinner party, don’t just invite your friends and family. Invite those who won’t repay you. Invite those in need. Invite the outsider (Luke 14:12-14).
- Make dinner for a group of people on our campus who are considered outsiders…who are hungry…who aren’t necessarily like you. Sweat the details. Make it awesome. Honor them. You probably have found the right people if it feels like a step of faith.
- What would it be like to use a dinner time on campus to connect with students you haven’t met before? Taking one meal time a week in Central or Trivette would be pretty different for most upperclassmen. Taking the time to find a few things you have in common with people you sit with would be even more upside down. One upperclassman community group has already spent a dinner time getting to know new students, finding out what they have in common, and trying to connect over common interests.
What if you or your community group supported a Central Asian missionary who is bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to people who had never even heard of Jesus?
Do you meet in the dorms? This might be for you. What if you willingly humbled yourself to take out a dorm floor’s trash? Anyone can do that once. What if you did it for the remainder of the semester? What if this is what you did every week for the first 30mins of your community group?
- Brainstorm what you will say when you ask for people’s trash. It could be as simple as, “I’m a part of a group that is looking for small ways to serve and honor our fellow students.”
**Sweat For Something Worthwhile
Most of us came to school here because we love the mountains. What if you got dirty to build a trail which exists to bless an outdoor-oriented community? There are plenty of people who don’t feel comfortable jumping into a “Bible Study.” What if every week before community group you built trail with your community group and others who see the value in a project like this? Men- Here is an opportunity that will make us sweat, isn’t touchy-feely, and gives us meaningful work to do together.
- The Boone United Trail welcomes groups every Tuesday evening starting at 5pm. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details. Other days are also possible.
Technology has put 1,000 friends right in front of us. In a world where everyone posts our “ideal self,” what if we posted a short video of how Jesus Christ “flipped” our perspectives and changed us? Imagine the power of doing this as an entire community group.
- This isn’t going to be an “I grew up in a Christian family and now my life is better with Jesus” story. We’ll help you avoid the cliché’s and share a minute or less of your life with power.
- The Easy Breezy Guide to sharing, shooting, and posting Upside Down Stories
- new! Need help telling your story? You’ll want this one page resource.
Speaking of food, what if your community group took a lunch hour to initiate conversations about Jesus Christ? The earliest Christians couldn’t stop talking about Jesus. They often focused on what happened on the cross, in the tomb, and how he is alive even today. The early Christians were accused of turning the world upside down with this message. We often aren’t turning anything upside down. What if we asked God for opportunities to share the gospel? Cru has helpful tools to help you get the conversation going:
- Knowing God Personally Booklet (short gospel presentation)
- Soularium (creative pictures that can springboard into great conversations)
- Perspective Cards (playing cards that show belief systems)
**Pray for 3, now proclaim. So you’ve been praying for 3 people. What if you took a step this week to proclaim your hope in Christ with one of them? You probably don’t feel confident. Welcome to the club. Fortunately, it’s not up to you to change or convince. You have been called to converse.