Wednesday, November 30, 2011

God's will for you...

Rejoice always;
pray without ceasing;
in everything give thanks; 
for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

What's God's will for us?  He wants us to rejoice, pray and give thanks...all the time, in every situation.  Sounds pretty simple, doesn't it?  It is simple, but we definitely need His help to be obedient!  Sometimes, it is very difficult to do these three things.  We get caught up in our own lack of understanding and lose faith that God cares and is involved in our lives.  Satan loves to hit us when we are down and causes us to doubt God's goodness.  

So what should we do?  We should rejoice, pray and give thanks - regardless of our feelings at the moment - out of obedience to God.  Let's break it down a bit - 

Rejoice - joy and delight that is a direct result of God's grace (more on that starting tomorrow!)

Pray without ceasing - How do we do this?  We have to live, don't we?  We can't go around with our eyes closed all the time!  Let me ask you a question.  Do you close your eyes when you talk to your family or friends?  Of course not!  You don't have to close your eyes to pray.  I have an ongoing conversation with God all day.  His Spirit is inside me...all the time...listening.

In everything give thanks - This is the hardest one for me.  I am a perfectionist and when things don't go the way I think they should, the way I think I deserve them to happen because I'm a good person (yes, I have actually had that thought...), I sometimes have a difficult time wrapping my head around the fact that God allows things to happen that are difficult for me to accept.  He's still good and He still loves me.  He knows so much more than I know and I am learning to trust Him more and more.  So, I am training myself to thank everything.  I think I need to buy some more sticky notes to put up reminders around my house and in my car!

Home Cleaning Tip

I don't know if you have ever had to deal with duct tape residue or not.  I had used duct tape to put a verse I had painted on my bathroom mirror.  After awhile, the artwork became yucky because of humidity and splashed products, so I took it off the mirror.  Alas, the duct tape left ugly residue.  

I tried all kinds of glass cleaners and Goo Gone.  They didn't work.  Then someone told me to try WD-40.  I sprayed it on and let it sit for ten minutes, then used my Pampered Chef scraper to scrape it off.  I had to reapply the WD-40 a couple more times and didn't get all the residue completely off.  But it sure looks better!

Since tomorrow is December 1st, I will begin posting Christmas ideas for snacks, gifts, gift wrapping, Christmas stockings, traditions...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Always giving thanks...

...speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord;
always giving thanks for all things in the name of 
our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father.
Ephesians 5:19-20

Music has always been an important part of my life.  Mom even made my brothers and me perform in front of the ladies of the home extension meeting when we were young kids.  It was nerve wracking, but the food was delicious!  We grew up singing and playing instruments, too.  Mom and Dad played instruments and we all sang "specials" at church.  Choir was an important part of my life all the way through college.  

Isn't it interesting that this passage tells us to give thanks to God through music?  Something to think about...

Home Tips

We have a leather sofa and love seat that we have really enjoyed...a lot!  It is showing some wear and tear and I was looking for a product to make it look better.  Then, I read that someone had used shoe polish to repair leather.  Why didn't I think of that?!!!  The leather isn't perfect, but it looks so much better.  I rubbed the places where I had applied the polish with a paper towel so polish wouldn't get on anyone's clothes.


What I used:


Monday, November 28, 2011

His indescribable gift...

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
2 Corinthians 9:15

Spending time with our adopted family and our youngest daughter for Thanksgiving was truly a gift.  I hope you all had some good family time, as well.  

As great as it was, this is not the gift being described in the above verse.  The gift that is so wonderful that there are no words to adequately describe it, is the grace of Jesus Christ.  This particular gift is not a physical gift that can be unwrapped, but is a spiritual gift.  

On Thursday, December 1, I will be posting ideas for gifts and wrapping those gifts.  But, better than anything that can be purchased, Jesus' grace is a gift that I hope you have enjoyed and are enjoying every day.  God has made it available to each one of us and tells us all about it in his Word, the Bible.  Throughout December, we will be looking at God's indescribable gift.  Be prepared to feel loved!

Today's Recipe - Cinnamon Roll Waffles
Because of celiac disease, I have not been able to enjoy cinnamon rolls for the last several years.  And then...I found a recipe for cinnamon roll pancakes.  I decided to make waffles instead.  They are delicious!  Because of the obvious sugar load, these will be served on special occasions only.

Make your favorite recipe for waffles/pancakes.  Pour some batter into a preheated, sprayed waffle maker, leaving room for it to spread as it bakes.  Starting in the middle of the waffle, make a spiral of cinnamon roll center mix on top of the waffle batter.  Close the waffle maker and bake.  When the waffle is done, place it on the rack of a 200 degree preheated oven.  Note:  this will keep the waffles warm, but keep them from getting soggy.   When serving the waffles, drizzle a glaze over the top of each waffle.

Gluten Free Waffles
 1 cup Pamela's Baking & Pancake Mix
1 egg
3/4 cup water or milk
1 Tbsp oil

Whisk all ingredients together until there are no lumps.  Pour 1/4 cup batter onto a preheated, sprayed waffle maker.  Makes 6 round waffles

Cinnamon Roll Center Mix
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tbsp cinnamon

Whisk all ingredients together.  It needs to be runny enough to pour in spiral on waffles.  If it gets too thick, put in microwave to warm it up.

4 Tbsp butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
milk or cream to make it runny enough to drizzle over waffles

Friday, November 18, 2011

With thanksgiving...

Do not be anxious about anything,
but in every stiuation,
by prayer and petition, 
with thanksgiving,
present your requests to God.

And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds
in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6, 7

There are many reasons people experience anxiety during the holiday season.  It is very tempting to complain to God or whine about our situation when we are anxious.  But these verses tell us to not be anxious (um...does that mean we have a choice whether we are anxious or not?) but to tell God what it is that is tempting us to be anxious and ask for his help.  

And then there is that little phrase stuck in the middle of verse six - with thanksgiving.  Could that be the key to reducing or eliminating anxiety?  Hmmm... something to think about!  and try! or how about just doing it?!

Nanna's Kitchen will be back on November 28.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Everlasting lovingkindness...

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his lovingkindness is everlasting.

Give thanks to the Lord of gods,
for his lovingkindness is everlasting.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords,
for his lovingkindness is everlasting.
Psalm 136:1-3

I think you get the picture!  God will always and forever be known for his lovingkindness. Just a reminder:  he is personally involved with us, he is committed to us and he offers us redemption from sin, enemies and troubles.  Thank you, Lord!

Preparing for Thanksgiving

Have you started on your preparations yet?  One of the things on yesterday's list was cleaning and decluttering.  I have a Swiffer duster, which I love, but always felt a little guilty as I threw the used dusters away.  So, when I was on Pinterest looking for ideas for our life group Pinterest party, I found instructions for a duster that can be washed and used over and over.  And talk about easy - it took all of ten minutes from start to finish.

The first thing I did was dig out my fleece scraps and decided on a color.  I chose white.  I guess I want to see just how dusty my house is!  I used one of the Swiffer dusters as a pattern and cut out four layers.  

Then I simply sewed three straight seams, again using the Swiffer duster as a guide, and trimmed the edges to make them even.

The last step was to cut the strips in towards the outer seams. (Next time, I will use my pinking shears so the strips will have the zig zag strips like the original duster.  Why didn't I think of that the first time?!) Again, I used the Swiffer duster as a guide.  Shake to fluff and slide onto the handle, ready to use.  If your fleece hasn't been washed yet, you will need to wash it before using.  DO NOT USE FABRIC SOFTENER!

Couldn't be easier.  Think of the money I will save!  I will make at least two more to have on hand.  Hmm...could be stocking stuffers for my girls, as well. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Satisfied and filled...

Let them give thanks to the Lord for his lovingkindness,
and for his wonders to the sons of men!
For he has satisfied the thirsty soul,
and the hungry soul he has filled with what is good.
Psalm 107:8, 9

Are you hungry or thirsty?  I'm not talking about physical hunger or thirst, but that feeling that life just isn't doing it for you.  Something's missing and if you ignore it long enough you will no longer recognize that you are needing some spiritual nourishment.  These verses tell us that this is one more reason to thank God this holiday season.  He satisfies and fills that void deep inside your being with good.

Remember yesterday's definition of good?  It's the same word that is used in verse nine - that which is favorable, festive, delightful, pleasant, right, best.  Don't ignore what God has for you in his Word.  It is good!

Preparing for Thanksgiving

A little organization (making lists) is always helpful.  Plus if you think of something and put it on your list, you won't forget it.  I am very thankful for sticky notes!  Getting things done early a bit at a time will also mean that you will have the energy to enjoy your guests because you won't be exhausted the day of Thanksgiving.

Some list ideas:

Menu with grocery list and order of cooking (what dishes need to be cooked, in what order)

Guest list - it's ok to ask guests to bring one of the food items

Table centerpiece with votive candles (both of these can be very inexpensive - be creative and set the table the day before Thanksgiving)

Iron tablecloths and napkins a week ahead (if you don't have these, make sure you have something to protect your table and buy paper napkins - fold them and set aside)

Clean and declutter: (dining area, living room, kitchen, bathroom)

Tip from Fly Lady:  Set your timer and spend 15 minutes in each of these rooms.  When the timer goes off, move to the next room even if you are not done.  When you have worked in each room for 15 minutes, set the timer again and take a 15 minute break with a glass of water and your feet up.  Repeat until your have all four rooms cleaned and decluttered, even if you have to take a couple of days to get it done.

DO THE ONES YOU LIKE LEAST FIRST!  Why? Because once you get those out of the way, everything else is easy!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

For he is good...

Praise the Lord!
Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his lovingkindness is everlasting.
Psalm 106:1

According to this verse, we are to thank the Lord because he is good.  Ok, good is the opposite of bad.  True.  But, what does it mean that God is good?  Oh, you're going to love this!

Strong's Concordance defines good as favorable, festive, delightful, pleasant, right, best.  Wow!  That's a little more than the opposite of bad!  I've thought of God as right.  He's our righteous judge.  He's obviously the best God - no competition there.  He is favorable; he is partial to his children and affirms his love to us.  He is pleasant and delightful - something I easily see through his word.  But, I have to tell you, I've never thought of him as festive.  Hmmm...

Wait a minute!  He is the one who established the Jewish feasts and festivals and spread them out through the year.  He knows we need holidays to break up the monotony of time.  Every one of the Jewish feasts and festivals are wonderful reminders of the great things God has done for his people.  And these holy days are marked by traditions and story telling and people gathering together to worship God, to repent from sin, to eat, to sing and dance.  The Lord is festive!  

So, as we head into the holiday season of 2011, think and pray about ways you can tell others, especially the children, about God's goodness.

Today's Recipe - Caramel Cheesecake Apple Dip
This dip is easy and amazingly delicious!  Think about it...caramel apples and cheesecake together.  Yum!  And, yes, I got this recipe off of Pinterest.  I served this last night at a planning meeting for a Pinterest party in December and forgot to take a picture before we dug in.  So, this is what was left, but I think you get the idea.

1 cup sugar
8 Tbsp butter, sliced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla
sea salt

Place sugar, butter and cream in a small heavy saucepan.  Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until sugar dissolves.  Bring to a boil and cook for 3-5 minutes until slightly thickened.  Remove from heat and add vanilla and salt, but let it sit for 10 minutes before stirring.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Refrigerate any leftover caramel.  Simply warm it in the microwave to serve after refrigeration.  

12 oz cream cheese, softened
3 Tbsp heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
mini chocolate chips
toffee pieces 
(option - you can replace the chocolate chips and toffee pieces with Heath bar bits, which are available in the baking section)

Mix first four ingredients using a mixer.  Line a small bowl with plastic wrap.  Spread half of the cheesecake on the bottom.  Spoon on a layer of caramel.  Sprinkle with a layer of chocolate chips and toffee pieces.  Top with the rest of the cheesecake mix.  Fold over the plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours.

To serve:  invert onto a serving plate.  Spoon caramel sauce over the top and sprinkle more chocolate chips and toffee pieces over the dip.  Arrange Granny Smith apple slices around the cheesecake.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Good to give thanks to the Lord...

I've noticed people posting things for which they are thankful on Facebook.  It is a great thing to do to stop and recognize those things.  Speaking of which - let's play the "Thankful Game"!  You have two minutes to think of three things/people you are thankful for.  Remember, you can't use the ones you used last week!  Go!!

It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
and to sing praises to your name, O Most High.

To declare your lovingkindness in the morning, 
and your faithfulness by night.

For you, O Lord, have made me glad by what you have done,
I will sing for you at the works of your hands.

Psalm 92:1, 2, 4

Let's look at some definitions so we will understand what we are "to declare", according to verse 2.

Lovingkindness - "strength, steadfastness and love; implies personal involvement and commitment in a relationship beyond the rule of law.  This is one of God's most central characteristics.  God's lovingkindness is offered to his people, who need redemption from sin, enemies and troubles."
Vine's Dictionary

Faithfulness - "certainty and unconditional love"  Vine's Dictionary

Do you know God's personal involvement and commitment to you?  God has chosen to love us with unconditional love and he knows us better than we know ourselves!  We can count on him to always love us.  That is something to be thankful about!!

Today's Recipe - Cinnamon Roll Waffles
I saw cinnamon roll pancakes on Pinterest and thought I would try to make cinnamon roll waffles.  They are a keeper!  These will be on the menu for one of our holiday breakfasts!  We just spread some butter on them and ate them, but next time I will make a simple glaze to drizzle over the top. 

 Make your favorite waffle batter.  Pour into the waffle maker, leaving a little extra room for the cinnamon roll mixture.  Pour the mixture over the waffle batter in the waffle maker, starting in the middle and spiraling out to the edges.  Close and bake as usual.  When each waffle is cooked to your liking, take it out of the waffle maker and place in an oven that is preheated to 250 degrees F.  Place directly on the oven rack so they won't get soggy and will have a nice crisp surface.  Serve with cinnamon syrup, maple syrup, butter or a simple glaze.

Cinnamon Roll Center Mixture:
 1 Tbsp butter (for each waffle you will be making), melted
2 Tbsp brown sugar (for each waffle you will be making)
cinnamon to taste
dash of nutmeg

 I used Pamela's gluten free baking mix to make the waffles and enjoyed every bite.  It's been a very long time since I've had a cinnamon roll.  These make a wonderful substitute and they really taste like a cinnamon roll!  YUM!

Friday, November 11, 2011

A small Psalm...

Psalm 100 is small but packed full of thanksgiving!

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God. 
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Today's Recipe - Shredded Braised Chicken Breasts
I found a post on Pinterest where they shredded cooked chicken in their Kitchen Aid mixer. Really?!  This I had to try!  So, I looked up a recipe for braising chicken and tried it.  It works and is very tasty as well!

Mix and put on a plate:
garlic powder
onion powder
salt and pepper (I used lots of pepper)

Coat both sides of 4 chicken breasts with the spices on the plate.  Saute chicken in 1 Tbsp coconut oil until golden. Add water to cover chicken.  Put the lid on the pan and cook for one hour.

Strain the liquid and save.  (If you aren't going to use it immediately, put it in a freezer bag and freeze for later.)

While chicken is still warm, put it in the bowl of your Kitchen Aid mixer with the paddle attachment and turn on at 4-6 speed for about 20 seconds.  Easy peasy!

I used some on my honey's lunch salad yesterday with some craisins, cucumber slices and balsamic vinegar dressing.  He loved it.  I made a chicken salad sandwich with mayo and a little brown mustard for my lunch today. It was delicious!  I'm thinking chicken enchiladas, tortilla soup, chicken tacos...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Sing for joy...

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving 
and extol him with music and song.
Psalm 95:1,2

Well, this is interesting!  Music is very important to us and, according to this passage, to God.  What about the music we listen to?  Could it be categorized as joyful and thankful?  Do you sing joyful and thankful songs to God on a daily basis?  Interesting thought...


The bed skirt on our bed was driving me nuts! I have tugged and pulled on it to get it off the floor only to have it sag and look frumpy a day later. 

I have told you all before that I do not come up with many ideas on my own, but I can imitate other creative people.  Well, when I was shopping for a new bed skirt for the guest bed, I found out about bed skirt pins.  (This was at the same shop with the $400 silk bed skirt that I passed on!)  The saleslady just happened to mention that I could probably do the same thing with safety pins.  My ears perked up - I had safety pins at home.  I love a FREE solution to a decorating problem!

Our bed is a king size bed so I can't pick up the mattress by myself, so I shoved the mattress to each side, pulled up the bed skirt, and pinned it to the box spring.  On this first photo, if you look carefully you can see "ribs" in the box spring.  It was easier to get the pins in if I poked the pin in on one side and up the "rib".  You can see how far I spaced the pins out in the second picture - about one foot apart.

There was no where to shove the mattress so I could pin the end of the bed skirt.  I couldn't hold up the mattress and pin at the same time.  Hmmm...what to do?  Well, I lifted the mattress and shoved a small stool underneath to hold it up.  Worked great! (I still pulled some muscles...ouch!)

It was such a simple solution and our bed doesn't look frumpy anymore!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Glorify Him with thanksgiving...

I will praise God's name in song
and glorify Him with thanksgiving.

Psalm 69:30

Did you realize we can bring glory to God by telling Him what we are thankful for?  A friend on a missions team, Chuck Nida, once taught me "The Thankful Game".  I had two minutes to tell him five things that I was thankful for right then.  Once I used something/someone, I couldn't use them again.  It was amazing how much more I thought about what I was thankful for because I never knew when we would be playing the game and I wanted to be prepared!  So...

You have two minutes - Go!


Well, I've had the fabric since May and finally got around to making and putting up the valance in the bathroom.  I'm glad that's done! 

My honey cut a 1x2 the length I needed then attached L-brackets to the board.  I used my Hobby Lobby staple gun and attached the valance to the board.  Then my honey attached the valance to the wall up to the ceiling so the small window would look taller.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Worthy of our trust...

Ok, today I am going to summarize the Lord's Prayer with the information from the word studies that we have been looking at for the last two weeks.  Please remember that this is only an interpretation.  Here we go!

So, this is how we should pray:

Thank you, Father God, for redeeming us and making us your children.  We need to always remember that you don't live in a building, but in heaven.  That is beyond our comprehension and we need to be mindful of your sovereignty.  We want to be different from the world and bring honor to your name because we are earnestly pursuing obedience to your Word.


Father, your kingdom exists now in human hearts and will one day be a physical kingdom here on earth.  (Jesus, come quickly!).  Help us accomplish your purpose in our hearts and lives to please you 
and create joy on earth through your wisdom and power instead of the emptiness, weakness and sinfulness of this world.


Please provide what we need to live today.  Please forgive us when we live for ourselves instead of pleasing you.  Help us remember that you forgive us when we are willing to forgive people who offend us, following your example of forgiveness.


Father God, please don't let us get anywhere near temptation to sin.  Drag us away from the danger of Satan's evil schemes to destroy us.  Free us from any strongholds of sin in our lives.


We feel secure in the fact that you have all power and all capability.  Father, you have a glorious reputation that will never change and will be the same forever, worthy of our trust.

I hope and pray this is encouraging to you!


I have a couple of drawers where I keep my fabric pieces and scraps.  I really have no clue what all is in those drawers because I just in put what's left from my projects.  Then I saw this idea on Pinterest (of course!) and knew I had to take control of my fabric!  It will probably take a whole day to complete this project, but it will keep me from buying fabric I don't need.


Squares of fabric
O ring
Elmer's glue

Cut your squares of fabric and glue near the bottom of the tags.  Measure the fabric and write the info with a pencil (so you can change the measurement as you use more of the fabric) on the tag above the fabric. Connect with an O ring.  If you quilt and have a lot of fabric, you might want to have different O rings separating the tags according to fabric color and/or pattern. Store the tags where you have easy access to them.  I think mine will be hung on my inspiration board.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Power and glory forever...

For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory
forever.  Amen 

This is the last bit of the Lord's Prayer.  Let's look at some word studies:

kingdom - this is a repeat of the word from verse 10.  Anytime a word is repeated it is important and we need to think about why it is repeated.

power - capability that is essential to the character of God

glory - "It basically refers to the recognition belonging to a person, honor, renown; not the outward glorious appearance, attracting attention to the person or thing itself, but that glory shown from within reflecting in the appearance which attracts attention, namely splendor, glory, brightness, adornment."

forever - motion that "denotes duration or continuance of time, but with great signifies eternity whether past or to come."

Tomorrow, I will attempt to summarize the Lord's Prayer according to what we have learned.


This is a little trick I learned on Pinterest that does away with one of my least favorite painting cleanup chores.  Simply cover your paint tray with aluminum foil.  When done painting, pour the remaining paint back into the paint can then throw away the foil.  Done!  I love it!

Today's Recipe - Santa Fe Mac n Cheese
We recently went to Santa Fe and enjoyed dinner at a wonderful cafe that was the inspiration for this recipe.

12 oz. pkg elbow macaroni (can substitute gluten free pasta)
3 Tbsp flour (can substitute gluten free flour) 
1/2 tsp salt and a dash of pepper
4 Tbsp butter
2 1/2 c. milk
2 1/2 - 3 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 tsp dry mustard
4 pieces bacon, cooked and broken into pieces
1/2 cup roasted green chiles
1/4 cup roasted red peppers 
Grated Parmesan cheese 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cook macaroni according to directions.  In another pan, melt butter then flour and salt and pepper.  Whisk until blended.  Whisk in milk and cook over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.  Add cheese and dry mustard and stir until cheese is melted.  Pour over cooked macaroni, bacon, chiles and peppers.  Toss gently until mixed well.  Pour into a sprayed casserole dish and generously cover with Parmesan cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 - 40 minutes until top begins to brown.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Deliver us from evil...

Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil... 

Evil is all around us and becoming more and more prevalent in our world.  The word for evil in the Lord's Prayer means more than you think.  And deliver means more in the original language as well.  When you understand the definitions of the words in this phrase, you can't help but picture it in your mind.

Deliver - "properly denotes to draw with force and violence, to drag, pull, meaning to deliver or to draw out of danger or calamity and to liberate."  Can you picture God reaching down from heaven, grabbing the back of your collar and dragging you to safety?!

Evil - "labor, sorrow, pain.  Evil in a moral or spiritual sense:  wicked, malicious, mischievous  Satan is the author of all the mischief in the world."  If you're like me, you assumed that evil only meant the second part of the definition.  But think about it, evil can also be identified as labor, sorrow and pain.  I certainly want to be delivered from those as well!  Can you picture God dragging you away from those things, freeing you from them?  He can and does!  And according to this prayer, we are to ask Him to do that for us. That must mean we NEED to ask Him to deliver us from evil.  Hmmm...


I was on Pinterest and saw this great FREE idea.  I've been wanting to get a different cover for my iphone and this took all of 10 minutes.  If I get tired of it or decide I want something different, it will be a breeze to change. 

First, I took the covers off my iphone then used the inside cover to trace the new insert on the back side of a piece of scrapbook paper.  I cut it out and put it all back together.  Easy peasy!
Note:  cut the small hole using a hole punch.

There wasn't much to choose from when I got my phone, but I was getting a little tired of the gecko...
This is much better!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Lead us not into temptation...

Would God cause us to be in a place where we would be tempted to sin?  That sure seems to be what this phrase from the Lord's Prayer is saying.  But, to understand what it really means, we must look at the definitions of the words "lead" and "temptation" in the original Greek.

Lead - to carry inward bring, lead into.  Something else that is interesting about this word in this particular passage is the tense of the word.  It is aorist subjunctive used as an imperative which means "this tense usually forbids an action which is not in progress and thus commands that it not be started".
In today's vernacular, "Don't even go there!"

Temptation - testing.  "The meaning depends on who tempts.  If it is God, it is for the purpose of proving someone and never for the purpose of causing him to fall.  If it is the devil who tempts, then it is for the purpose of causing one to fall."  The whole book of Job is about God allowing the devil to test Job.  Job was severely tested by Satan but did not sin even though he questioned God.  The book of Job has brought me comfort during times of testing. 

The next word after this phrase is "but..." We will learn about the phrase that follows tomorrow.  I think you will love what we discover!

Today's Recipe - Homemade Magic Shell Topping

I saw this recipe on Pinterest and thought it looked interesting enough to try.  It tasted and hardened on the ice cream just like the stuff you buy at the store without all the chemicals!  Yum!

1 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup coconut oil

Microwave for 1 minute.  Allow to sit a few minutes then stir until smooth.  It will be runny.  Pour into a glass bottle and refrigerate.  To serve, heat bottle in hot water or the microwave until runny.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

As we forgive...

And forgive us our debts, 
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
Matthew 6:12

It's wonderful that God forgives our debts (sins).  But read this verse again.  There is a qualifier.  We are to ask God to forgive our debts the same way we forgive other people's debts against us. Ouch!!

Let's look at some definitions -

debtor - "an offender, a trespasser, one who is a debtor or obliged either to render reparation or suffer punishment."  Let's face it.  We are really good at demanding others make amends or suffer the consequences for hurting us.  But let's look at the other half of the definition to forgive.

forgive - "We are never expected to forgive the sins of others because we have no power to do so, but we are expected to forgive others.  This means that we should do everything in our power to see that the sins of others are removed from them through the grace and power of Jesus Christ."  And through God's grace, forgiving someone means not letting their sins have any more power over you. 

Toddler Sleeping Time

I really didn't want to get out the twin air mattress for my granddaughter because it takes up so much space in my craft room.  Then I saw this great idea on Pinterest.  I dug through my pillowcase basket and found five green pillow cases.  (I didn't even know I had that many green pillow cases!)  I laid them out side to side, then sewed them together.  It took all of ten minutes.  Final step - stuff them with pillows.  It made a pallet the perfect size to use one pillow for a headboard and fit her child size sleeping bag.  The only problem was the sleeping bag slid off the pillows.  Now I just need to figure out what to use to keep the sleeping bag from slipping - maybe a non-slip mat that goes under a rug...

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Only God can forgive sins...

Wow! November came quickly this year.  The holiday season is just around the corner! It is fun to decorate and prepare traditional foods, but I most look forward to spending time with family.  Ok...enough of that - I'm feeling sentimental.

Back to the Lord's Prayer - Forgive us our debts... Some translations use the word transgressions, but both words refer to "an offense, a trespass which makes reparation obligatory."   The Bible says that we all have sinned against God and therefore have a debt we owe him.  Because He is a loving God, He provided the perfect payment for that sin through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross.

God is the only One who can forgive sins.  According to Dr. Zodhiates' Complete Word Study New Testament, "The expression to forgive sins means to remove the sins from another. To forgive sins is not to disregard them and do nothing about them, but to liberate a person from their guilt and sin's power.  We are to ask God to forgive us our sins, remove them away from us so that we do not stand guilty of them or under their power."

I believed in Jesus to save me when I was a little girl.  That was a very very long time ago and I can definitely look back over my life and see how God has and continues to bring me freedom from the power of sin, especially the stronghold of worry, just as He is always faithful to forgive me when I confess my sins to Him.  I am so thankful for His forgiveness!

Play Time

I really enjoyed the last three days with our granddaughter.  I prepare activities for her before she comes, because a bored preschooler is asking for trouble!  When I was searching for a new bed skirt for the guest bed, one of the stores I went to was Bed Bath & Beyond.  I didn't find a bed skirt, but I did find this great playhouse for $20!  Yep, you read that correctly; it was only $20. It has a door on both long sides along with shutter windows on all four sides. My honey, son-in-law and I put it together in about ten minutes and our granddaughter had a great time playing in it, with her creative imagination. We did put a strip of packing tape on the peak of the roof at each end to keep it from coming apart.  I'm pretty sure it will be just as easy to take apart and put back in the box to have for the kiddos to play in at Christmas.  When the kids get older, they will be able to color the playhouse, too.