Healthy Recipes

I asked my husband to help me choose some recipes for healthy eating. I like to make foods he’ll enjoy as well.

I went to Hallelujah Acres at http://www.myhdiet.com/ and accessed a free recipe for Veggie Chili with Cashew Sour Cream for one of our main meals. I’m going to go through the recipes we chose, to make up a grocery list.

He reminded me that some of the entrées will take time to prepare. I figure it’s worth it. We both felt better when we ate more raw food.

Christians are taught that their bodies are temples of God and the Holy Spirit dwells within them in First Corinthians 3:16.

Therefore, they should take care of their body, and their walk with God. Even so, the Apostle Paul said in First Timothy 4:8 (NKJV): “For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.”

May God bless you this busy holiday season. May you enjoy yourself in moderation. 🙂

Showers of Blessings

When I went to a baby shower tonight, one of the games for the people attending was to try and match a sentence or two from the children’s book it belonged to. Sixteen classic books, from Winnie the Pooh to The Secret Garden to Peter Pan to I Think I Can to Horton Hears a Who to name a few.

The ladies throwing the shower requested we bring a children’s book with a message to the baby written inside the cover. What fun!

It’s amazing how impactful children’s books are. Those attending ranged in age from low twenties to the grandmother at age 89. So many of the gals shared contented sighs as they talked about their favorite stories from early childhood.

Jesus told stories. He told about the young son asking for his inheritance early in life, while his dad and brother were still alive. After he spent all of his money on “wine, women and song,” he became hungry and friendless.

After almost starving to death, he remembered his dad and decided to go home and ask to be hired as a servant. His father welcomed him with open arms and I’ve seen more than one movie made based on “The Prodigal Son,” as the story is called.

We, as sinners goof up and as soon as we ask God to forgive us and determine in our hearts to turn from our wicked ways, God accepts us as a loving, earthly father would do.

It can be found in Luke 15.

I hope you are having a great day. May God bless you.

 

Time Flies, Two

Hi! This is the Monday following Thanksgiving in the USA, and I’m recovering from lack of sleep, too much to eat, and lots of company over to our home.

Sunday evening when I headed for church, I left my oldest daughter and her family packing their belongings. They’d arrived Wednesday night. I join the worship team on Sunday nights, but I stayed home until just before the service started, so I expected them to say, “No practice, no singing.”

When the leader invited me to join them, I repeated the rules. She said, “Rules, shmules.”

Well, I’m unsure of the spelling, but she’s a Christian not worried about appearances, but more about the heart of God and what does He want. Not that she’s perfect, so she’s told me, but she’s a delightful person and I gladly joined the team. When I didn’t know the song, I sang softly. Come to find out, since I didn’t arrive in time for a sound check, my microphone was off. 🙂

When we talked later, she asked me about it. I thought it was off once in a while and at other moments, I decided it might be on after all. Anyway, how do you tell the guy doing sound that the mike is off without disturbing everyone? So, I sang and was content in the knowledge that if I flubbed up, no one would know it. 🙂

When we got home Sunday night, it felt so quiet. We had four grandchildren since Wednesday and on Sunday afternoon, three more grandkids joined us. On Thursday evening two single moms came over and their time overlapped. So that day we had the four grandchildren and then two boys ages seven and three, plus a sixteen month old.

The two boys used to attend our church on a regular basis until I told the mom about a church that might interest her. They found it a better fit so now we only see them sporadically. The boys really bonded to my husband. He fell asleep on the recliner so the oldest boy quietly crawled up next to him and played a hand held game as my husband slept. Then the three year old climbed up on the other side of him, which woke my husband up. So he began to tickle and gently rough house and they were delighted. He loves kids and they love him.

On Saturday, my older brother and his wife came by to see the family. They had a gift for my oldest daughter and she appreciated that. My house is the central location for the two families, so when she is planning to arrive, I try to give them a heads up in case they can free their schedule.

On Monday morning, I told my husband that the time seemed to fly! No more hide ‘n go seek – I don’t find as many places to squeeze into as an adult. 🙂 No more sleeping bags stretched out. No more crying, no more laughing, no more hugs, no more chasing the three year old trying to get a hug. No more scolding the boys to get their toys out of the kitchen.

As I left for church Sunday night, knowing it was an early goodbye, I told my daughter I wouldn’t be crying when they left this time. “We’ll see you later for the Christmas play,” she said.

That helps to know we’ll see them again.

I often think where does the time go? I didn’t get as much time in the Word with them here, so I made up for it today. I asked the Lord if there was any place in particular He wanted me to read. I waited quietly – nothing. Then I read a while and asked again. This time I thought I heard Revelation seven. It felt incomplete, so I asked again and this time thought it was Revelation 1:7 which is: Rev 1:7, (GNB),  Look, he is coming on the clouds! Everyone will see him, including those who pierced him. All peoples on earth will mourn over him. So shall it be!

This made me feel as though Jesus is coming back soon. Then I read Rev 1:3, (GNB),  Happy is the one who reads this book, and happy are those who listen to the words of this prophetic message and obey what is written in this book! For the time is near when all these things will happen.

God’s timetable may seem slow and then, suddenly it speeds up and His purposes are being accomplished.

There’s an old saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun.”

That time warp happened to me this weekend when I got to enjoy people to the maximum. Then on Sunday night the worship leader prayed for Jerusalem because there are fires burning there. I asked for prayer for TN because I heard there are fires raging there, some of which have been set by arsonists. A friend told me today that GA is also on fire and there has been some arson there as well. So I’m praying that God will send rain and that people will look to God for reassurance from their fears.

I missed blogging. When I visited my daughter last month I tried to blog ahead of time and schedule it to appear on the chosen date, but it didn’t happen. So, I didn’t bother this time.

I blogged once while they were here. After that, I tried again but the internet was down. I think one of the grandchildren hit a button that disconnects the internet on the top of the computer case, if I understood my husband correctly. Another day I tried, but I’d let one of the family members borrow my computer and it took a long time before it was free. By then, I was tired.

Well, I hope this finds you well. May God bless you.

Writing and Life

This morning I picked up a book from a shelf in the living room that I dedicate to writing books. A year ago or so I went into an area at the library where they sell used books as a fund raiser. I bought The Writing Life by Annie Dillard, published by Harper & Row, Publishers; New York, NY. Annie Dillard copyrighted it in 1989. I bought it because it looked interesting. Later, it was listed in another writing book as a book writers should read.  So, I was glad I bought it. It’s a fun, serious book. Her wordplay delights the wordsmith in me. 🙂

The Writing Life

Inside the front book cover on the leaf it starts out, “In a surprising narrative, Annie Dillard describes the working life of a writer. These are vivid and ironic encounters at a desk.”

Those sentences made me want to look inside. The day before Thanksgiving, I had pies to bake and beds to make. My husband sat in his recliner chair eating brunch and watching a comedy sitcom. So, I joined him in the living room, eating my brunch, reading this book and watching television. I felt so relieved when he turned it off. I told him it was sucking me in and I had stuff I needed to get to.

My pie crusts are like puzzle pieces straining to connect. My youngest daughter said, “Mom, they always look like that. The insides taste great though, and that’s what counts.”

I smiled and then as my husband turned to YouTube for yet another kitchen appliance tip, I got reminded by him that if I wanted to improve my pie crusts, I could always find a demonstration on YouTube. His turkey is prepped for the morning, with all the fresh spices and a lemon and onions in the interior. Butter everywhere. We’ll see if we like it.

I listened to the Bible while preparing the pies since I didn’t get an early start to my day, as I mentioned above. 1 Thessalonians is where I started, and I might have finished at Hebrews. I listened to Paul admonishing believers to work or they shouldn’t eat. He made mention of refraining from arguments. Then he talked about being hospitable. A lot of points got mentioned, but I thought the few that got highlighted to me really hit home on the eve of a holiday. My daughter invited a single mom and her two young boys to our full house tomorrow. Then she said something about inviting another single mom and her little toddler boy.

She said, “It’s funny, when I lived here, I didn’t feel so free to have people over. Now, I just tell them that we’re eating at mom and dad’s, come on over.”

When we talked about the difference, part of it is because God has changed me, I told her. If things weren’t completely tidy, I was embarrassed. One afternoon listening to Dr. James Dobson on Focus on the Family some years back, he said the reason people don’t open their homes to their neighbors and friends is because of pride. That resonated with me. Pride is a downfall. I’m not perfect by any means, but when she told me she’d already invited the families, I checked with my husband, and he was okay with it, and then I gave my okay. Avoiding having people over because my furniture is getting old or I have some clutter on the kitchen table made for some lonely days in my younger years.

If you’re alone for the holidays, maybe you can bless someone else who is alone or participate at a food center. One year in the city, our young family helped the church we attended provide Thanksgiving meals for hundreds of people. My kids said that was the best Thanksgiving they’d ever had. Our church does a Christmas meal for anyone who wants to show up. If the attendees can bring a side dish, that’s great. If not, come along anyway.

May God bless you this November day.

Eastern Europe

Florian's Gate

Sunday and Monday I read Florian’s Gate by T. Davis Bunn, published by Bethany House Publishers in 1992 and copyrighted by T. Davis Bunn.

Davis Bunn writes Christian novels filled with intriguing plots and historical details that I learn a lot from and which get me thinking.

Poland, no longer a Communist country, grappled with the transition from a totalitarian state to a democratic state. I only remember a little about the Solidarity Movement being on the American news all those years ago.

This book is too complicated to summarize in a few sentences here, but it opened my eyes to the fact that many in this world have never heard the gospel of Jesus Christ at all or not in a compelling way. Without the love of God shoring them up, they don’t value what God values and they don’t live according to His plan for their lives.

I’m not saying that non-believers don’t have good lives or live productively. I’m just saying that they aren’t asking God to direct their steps and therefore, they may have been created for an incredible existence and they got second best by charting their own course.

I’m totally biased, of course. My husband told the story of a man that read the Bible for three years and never understood it until he asked Jesus to be his Lord and Savior. Then the Bible made sense to this intelligent man because the Scriptures say that the Word can only be understood by the spirit and not through human reasoning. That’s in 1 Corinthians 2.

Well, I hope you are having a great day. May God bless!

A Restful Day

There is one advantage to a cold and windy day in my life. Every time I thought about going outside, a loud rumbling wind shook our house a tiny bit. I’d look outside and see the trees flinging their leaves through the air and think, I’m not going out in that freezing weather. (It’s still windy tonight and it started yesterday evening.)

So, other than cooking and doing some dishes and a small excursion out the front door to see if our garbage can survived the blowing, (it had disappeared), I stayed inside. I layered myself in blankets and scarves made of yarn and a fluffy long cowl in style last year. It may still be fashionable, but I don’t notice what’s happening in the clothing industry at the beginning or the end of trends.

Anyhow, when my husband got home from work he asked me what I did all day. I told him I mostly read a book. “You took a day off?”

“Yes, a day off.”

Last week, I mentioned on this blog that we counseled a young mom with lots on her plate that she take a day off once a week. As my husband emphasized this to her, I thought, When is the last time I took a day off? On Sunday, I got up earlier than I wanted to, to fulfill an obligation, then I helped with the children, took a small nap because I was exhausted, and then got to evening church earlier than normal because the worship leader asked me to for extra practice. Unfortunately, I drank a caffeinated drink, not thinking how late it was, and so I didn’t sleep well.

So, I slept in this morning and the day took off on its own. It felt kind of nice to have a day off and I’ll be busy with family and preparations for Thanksgiving for the next few days.

I read in the book of Acts today. It’s so easy to read about the Apostle Paul being empowered by the Holy Spirit to speak more boldly of Jesus Christ and then the consequences of it. He received power from on high, so he worked miracles and then people got saved. Other people got jealous of the crowds leaving their religion to follow Jesus, and then Paul got persecuted – stoned and left for dead, beaten with whips and placed in jails. On his way to Rome, his ship got beaten by a severe storm and they all had to float to an island on boards of the ship if they couldn’t swim. When a poisonous viper attached itself to Paul’s arm, the natives thought Paul was destined to die. After he shook the snake into the fire, they waited for him to swell up with the poison coursing through his veins. After he lived, they decided he was a god and tried to worship him. The same thing happened earlier in Athens, they thought he and his co-worker were descendants of Zeus and began worshiping him. He had to set them straight.

I tried to picture living the life Paul lived, an imperfect man trying his best to represent Jesus Christ to the Jews and then to the Gentiles in a humble manner. To be trusted by God with the gift of miracles and to suffer “a thorn in the flesh,” to be reminded that his full reliance is on God. He couldn’t expect a pain-free life here on earth.

I don’t read the Bible to be entertained, but not having lived to those extremes, it gets me thinking of faith and what it may require. My fiction book today spoke of Christians living with pain. I’ll try and write of that tomorrow.

All in all, God is near to the brokenhearted, it says in Isaiah_61:1, (KJV), The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

And again, Jesus says this in Luke_4:18, (KJV), “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,”.

May God bless you!

 

 

 

God’s Love

My husband and I met friends for lunch today. Both men rushed to pay the bill, but our friend spoke seconds sooner to the waitress, so she called it. We got treated again. The last time we met them for lunch, I asked the man, “Will you ever let us pick up the tab?”

He smiled and said, “No.”

My husband was asking me to hurry so we could beat them to the restaurant, but I was mopping the kitchen floor. I forgot that he intended to get there before them to alert the waitress that we would be buying. We got there before the intended time, but she had written the wrong time in her planner because they tend to run late. She forgot she put in the reservation as half an hour earlier, and they did run late, but they were seated a few minutes before we arrived.

Part of the pleasure of seeing our friends is that we have a lot in common. Yet, we’ve known them long enough to discuss things we don’t agree upon and listen to each other and think it through. If we still have differing opinions, we don’t care. It’s not going to rock our world.

The man began talking about the love of God. He had planted some rose bushes together at his home. One was dwindling to a small root and not much above it. His wife was ready to dig it up and throw it away. He wanted to give it another chance. So, he dug it up after he’d made a huge hole in the ground away from the other rose bushes. He placed rich soil in the hole first, added some peat moss, if I remember correctly, added the half dead plant into the ground, covered it gently and then fertilized it and watered it. It began to prosper, to quote the fellow. His wife said, “You should see those roses now. They put the other ones to shame. Of course, he’s out there babying it all the time. Aphids better not come near.”

“That’s right,” he said. “If aphids attack the other roses, I’ll say, oh, they’ll be okay. But let an aphid land on this plant, I’ll pick off the ones I can see and then I’m out there spraying the bush to kill the bugs.”

To my amazement, he said, “That rose bush withered and dying reminds me of me before I found Christ. I didn’t even know I was miserable and hungry for God before I found Him. Then He led me to Him, dusted me off and started prospering me. I’d never be where I am today if it weren’t for Christ. I’d be nothing without him.”

He said it so humbly and so sincerely, it brought a tear to my eye. This man is a business man. I’ve only known him as prosperous and caring. One time we were eating a meal in a nice restaurant and a young couple came in. They sat in the table next to ours and when they went to leave, none of their credit cards worked. When he became aware, he paid for their meal. After they left, he said whether they pulled a scam on him or not, it didn’t matter, because he paid for the meal with money that God allowed him to earn. He counts his possessions as belonging to God and on loan to him and his family. Obviously his wife agrees. They are wonderful partners.

My husband said, “God is jealous for us. I understand that because of being married. It’s a good jealous, wanting us for Himself and protecting us and keeping us on the narrow path away from the harm of the evil one.”

“That’s how God is with us. He watches over us. He’s there for us,” our friend said.

We all agreed with him because we’ve seen God care for us in many circumstances. We’re all getting older. We’ve lived through some difficult times and that is when we appreciate God the most, when we’re at the end of ourselves, we decided.

My husband’s mom’s favorite Scripture was Psalm 91, which is all about God watching over us and caring about us! I love that.

Whenever we see our friends, we talk of so many things – the state of the business world as he sees it – he travels extensively, the state of the Union – the United States of America, whatever insights he’s discovered in the Word lately. His wife blesses us big time, too, although she’s the quietest of the four of us. They care about God, they care about us, they care about others and they keep up with the times. It makes for fascinating discussions. Lord willing, we’ll see them again in the winter months.

It’s always iffy when the snow flies, but NYS is prepared for winter weather and we drive through most of it. The only time our counties close down for snow days is when the wind and snow are so bad it’s impossible to see, or if the snow has gotten so high quickly that cars and trucks get buried in it before the snow plows can clear the roads. That’s pretty rare.

May God bless you and keep you, no matter what is going on in your life.

Thanksgiving is Nearing

 

I felt joy surge through my being yesterday when my husband announced that he was going to cook the turkey this Thanksgiving.  “You are?”

I smiled wholeheartedly. “Why are you surprised at that? I’ve cooked the turkey for the last three or four years.”

For some reason I’ve been sick for the last three or four Thanksgivings, which I promptly told him. Still, the joy remained.

“Sick on purpose,” he said with a smile.

I am determined to slow down in the next week, as much as possible and get to bed at a decent hour. Anyhow, he has been watching professional and non-professional cooks on YouTube fix mouth-watering turkeys for at least two days now. Last night we stayed up until almost one a.m. watching Gordon Ramsey slice onions and squeeze lemons and swirl rosemary in preparation for a Christmas turkey with fixings. Imagine my dismay when we watched the same show at 9:00 p.m. tonight. If I’d known, I would have dragged myself away from the creative cooking last night.

I don’t feel that grand tonight, so I’m going to bed as soon as I can when I finish here.

I got thinking what it says in Eph._5:16, (ASV),  “redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

As I’ve neared the end of the day, watching cooking shows, I wondered what I accomplished today. I spent a small amount of time in the Word this morning, and as I straightened papers in our green room I ran into Scriptures and read them. I typed for about two hours for a client in regards to Amish folk and their thoughts on the Scriptures came up every now and again. As I typed, they made mention of greed or wastefulness in America. Then they spoke of their own spiritual struggles to remain humble or to battle temptation when strangers offered them money because they thought the family was poor.

I appreciate the opportunity to work while I can. I’m aware that I’m getting older. So, I value the time I have with a fairly healthy body. Yet, realizing this lady’s life story, so radically different than mine, I see that I’ve been pampered much of my life. Every person has struggles and problems, it’s part of the human condition, it seems to me, since the fall of Adam and Eve and the turning them out of Paradise. So, I’ve had things to deal with that she didn’t, but I can’t imagine being gawked at because of my clothing and hairstyle and lifestyle being so radically different than the society I live in. People constantly asked them about their faith and how they lived and if they could take their picture, which they didn’t care for. She and her husband truly strove for humility. She preferred to stay in the background when running into curious strangers.

As a Christian, I run into it a little in America, looking different. Years ago, when clothing for twelve year olds was skimpy short and tight, trying to find modest clothing for my daughter was a nightmare. She began making her own t-shirts in the style that was popular, but she could lengthen them and find a size with a little breathing room. It’s nice that she’s artistic. We have a church in our town where the women all wear dresses. Our denomination does not, but we do try to retain femininity with modesty in mind.

Anyway, since Thanksgiving is not that far away, I’m getting the house ready and gathering groceries a week at a time for the non-perishables and calling my daughter to see what she’s bringing, etc. My mind is on Amish viewpoints some of the time and my world view with its responsibilities the rest of the time.

I do understand that I have many blessings. I pray I may never take what God has done for me for granted.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving when the day arrives if you celebrate it where you live. I keep feeling like time is short and precious.

May God bless you

Save It

 

 

I told my husband I wasn’t going to blog tonight because last night I blogged and then got on other people’s sites and commented and went to bed later than I wanted to. This morning I woke up way earlier than I wanted to.

After I typed a better version of the previous sentence and asked if people who know how to increase typing speed would like to give me tips, I moved my hand and lost all of the words. I don’t know how to find lost blogs on WordPress and I’ve made a point to type on Microsoft Word because I’ve lost my blog post in the past. So, I’m on Word and I’m blogging. Hah.

I went to the right of my blog to find savedandblessedblog’s name so I could call out to her and that’s when I lost my post. Oh, well.

I read her blog last night and it reminded me that as a Christian I ought to act like it when interacting with others. She said it in a nicer way than that. So, I purposed in my heart to behave when I called the medical billing department for the third time that keeps billing me for $2242.00 or thereabouts. I sent them my co-payment in July with my insurance information on the back of the form since they didn’t have my info, for some reason.

Two more bills came in the mail and I called them twice. The last person said it’s totally taken care of. Then I received a bill last week and I got mad. I begin to wonder if they send bills to customers hoping the person will pay it since insurance companies always lower the amount they are allowed to charge.

I planned on telling them that I was going to complain to three different agencies, ending with the state’s Attorney General. So, thank you for your blog, savedandblessedblog for being vulnerable and honest and exhorting others to walk in a manner worthy of our calling, as it says in Eph_4:1, (ESV) I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,….

The lady today took my information all over again and reminded me to check with them in four to six weeks to see if it’s been handled appropriately. I’m asking God to take care of it for me.

May God bless you.