It’s Not About You

I love how God knows…Among the many things He knows, (way too many to list) He knows when I need to have a deeper understanding of a truth.  I spend a couple of hours a day in my car…I dislike it immensely but try my best to make the best of sitting still for so long.  It’s the time I use for anything productive that I can accomplish while trapped driving, I use it mostly for phone calls and I pray, and yes, I listen to bible teaching radio programs. Sometimes that’s the only time of day that I have alone with God.

Today…my mind was wandering… well, actually the ladies in my head were having a heated conversation about work…a discussion about how some problem was handled. Don’t get all freaked out…I know they’re not real ladies, but sometimes my head just spins with thoughts when I wish something (or someone) was different. Today the sound of the person on the radio broke through, the conversation between me and those ladies.  I heard…”It’s not about what we do for God, it’s  about what God has done for us”.  Since the post, What are you doing today, I’ve had so many little “ah ha!” moments.  This jumped out at me, It’s really not about me and what I do. (my works) I knew that!

In a nutshell, the gospel (good news) of Jesus is…God sent His son (Jesus) to die on the cross for mankind, for no other reason but that He loves us and wants us to spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Have you ever let that idea resonate? The gift of salvation is not contingent on you or I doing anything, just believing. When you come to understand that it’s all about what Jesus did, I think it gives you a sense of gratitude that becomes love.

Some Christians view their salvation as a type of contract between them and God. Contracts are based on two people holding up their side of an agreement.  That kind of thinking can be dangerous, you may begin to think…”if I do this, then God will ….(insert your own idea here) and before you know it you’re beginning to think in a legalistic manner, like your salvation is contingent on something you do or don’t do….WRONG!  All of the work that needed to be done for salvation…

That was done by Jesus.

Blog Sayings  - Page 001


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Not Your Average Potato Salad

Summer days are upon us and that usually means outdoor barbeques, pool parties and family fun to celebrate the season. We’re always looking for foods with a bit of a twist to throw on the grill or an interesting new side salad. That is of course, unless you are the hubby, he loves the old faithful’s and will choose those every time, which is exactly what happened for the 4th of July. I asked.  And he said, without a moment’s hesitation, “potato salad!”

Not Your Average Potato Salad

This family favorite has been passed down from my mom.  It may look like your average potato salad, but it’s different! A good different.  It’s not really a healthy option for a side at your next barbecue in fact, after seeing the recipe in black and white, I’m sure that my healthy eating fitness coach daughter may never eat it again. But it’s delicious, so once in a while it’s a nice treat.

Sweet Summer Potato Salad

  • 8 Large Russet Potatoes                                6 hard-boiled eggs
  • 1 cup red onion (diced)                                 1 cup sweet pickles (cut in half lengthwise and sliced)
  • 1C Best Foods Mayonnaise                          1/2 C Evaporated Milk
  • Cider Vinegar                                               1/3 C Sugar

Boil the potatoes until they are cooked through. I cook my potatoes with the skin on because usually they are very easy to peel after cooking. Usually the skin will begin to crack when they are done cooking BUT if you wait too long and don’t take them out quickly, you will have mushy potatoes so be diligent and keep an eye on them.

When the potatoes are completely cooled (I usually put them in the refrigerator) dice them into chunks about 1/2 – 3/4″ in size. Place them in a large bow. Next, dice the hardboiled eggs and place them, along with the onion and pickles in the bowl.  Set aside in the refrigerator while you make the dressing.

Salad Dressing – Ingredients:   Mix together 1 Cup Best Foods or Hellman’s Mayonnaise  (yes…you should use Best foods/Hellman’s), 1/2 cup evaporated milk, 2 T Cider Vinegar, 1/3 C sugar.  This is a basic dressing for many salads, I use it for a couple of salads with just a little variation.

Mix about 3/4 of the salad dressing with your potato ingredients and thoroughly chill for about 3 hours. Once it’s chilled check the salad, you may have to add the additional dressing into the salad at this point. The potatoes seem to suck the dressing right up and sometime you will have dry salad, you want your salad to be moist and yummy.  I usually always add the balance of the dressing but it really does depend on how warm your potatoes were when you initially added the dressing. Warmer potatoes seem to absorb more dressing than colder potatoes, which is why I say make sure you chill those ingredients well before adding the dressing.  You can add the additional dressing right before serving or stick it back in the fridge and let those flavors blend while chilling.  Garnish with additional sliced hardboiled eggs on the top of the salad and serve in your favorite pretty glass bowl.

Wishing you some Summertime Fun,


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What Are You Doing Today?

THE question, the one someone posted today, was a bit more than just “what are you doing today?” Actually the words on the screen said…”What are you doing for God today? ”  My first thought was ouch! Did I do something for God today?  One responder assumed that the questions was about helping in the church or somewhere “significant” but as I thought about it…I don’t think that was the point of focus. The questions has crossed my mind often over the last couple of days, in my quiet time, while driving to work, while reading my bible I wondered…seriously…did I do anything for God today? What could I do for God today? I felt as if I hadn’t or couldn’t, work and other commitments consumed my week but it began to be pressed upon my heart that God didn’t want just my busy work he wanted my heart and I was indeed doing “things” for Him. Fortunately there are several ways to “do something” for God and exploring my options helped me to realize a few truths about what we can do for God.

Pray – We always seem to be asking God for some thing, to do some thing, or to help with some detail of our  life. Really, I think that is perfectly fine. We can pray for others too. That’s powerful.  How wonderful is it to stand in the gap for someone and send prayers for blessings to God, what if no one prayed for them, like ever? Sometimes I pray for people I see on the street. I don’t know them, they don’t know me! In Psalm 116:1-2 the psalmist writes – “I love the LORD because he hears and answers my prayers. Because he bends down and listens, I will pray as long as I have breath!” Prayer is essential in our relationship with God, we need it and yes this is something that we do for God. It’s so important to Him that “He bends down and listens” This is His time to hear us and our time to hear Him.

Read His Word – This is how our love for Him grows. If we don’t spend time in His word how will we know how he wants us to serve Him? When we  read our bible, our love and understanding for Him grows. That’s when it becomes apparent how he wants us to serve him. We need to listen, God’s word is one way He communicates to us.

Raise our Children – Mom’s, (and dads too) listen up, this is important! Teaching our children (or grandchildren) about Jesus is the most important job you have! Sometimes we sell that short… Enough said.  Don’t ever think you’re Just-a-mom

Ministry – Find your ministry, use the gifts that God gave you and bless someone else.  For me it’s teaching in Children’s Ministry on Sunday morning, I love those little faces. and I serve as a mentor/coach for a group of women whom have similar life experiences that I do.  For other’s it’s feeding the homeless in the park, visiting the elderly, and for you it could be something completely different. Find your passion, what you love, and step up. God can use you!

Be different – Different than the average person. Set apart. You are representing the King of Kings. Set an example don’t be like everyone else.  There’s only one you and God loves you just the way you are…flaws and all.  He’ll use them (the flaws) to help someone else but he wants the world to see Him through us….strive to be like Him. (just a quick side note…you gotta read your bible to know what He’s like if you want to be like Him) I still love that old popular saying…wwjd? What Would Jesus Do? It’s a good question don’t you think?

I realized that most of the thoughts above are not work or task related items, they are relational.  Our works, the things we “do” for God, do not earn our way into heaven. Christ did everything necessary to secure our forgiveness and acceptance. It’s because of our love and gratitude that we will help and serve Him; it’s the natural progression of our faith and I think we will find that serving comes naturally too.

Wish I knew the source to share for this quote.

Wish I knew the source to share for this quote.

Thank goodness I thought this through…It’ helped me to realize that He desires our love and obedience, not a schedule full of tasks, cause I’m not sure I can add one more thing to my schedule!


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I have a big mouth

A tiny sparkYep, you heard it here first. . . .

In the past there have been instances where I said more than I should have. Where I’ve thought that I have the answer and everyone should listen to me….and what do you know… I’ve gotten myself in trouble. Maybe I was having a bad day, maybe I was right, maybe I was wrong or maybe I was misunderstood and someone took offense. Not that I meant to offend them, but what I would call encouraging or helpful “advice” may not be taken that way.  Today I try to make an effort to be uplifting…encouraging but even then I can offend you…you see. I’m imperfect.

The boss man and I have the type of relationship where we can speak our minds (and we do sometimes louder than other times) but we both know it’s not personal. We’re both a little opinionated. At times we remind each other that it’s not personal, and we LET IT GO.

Some people are not like that, they don’t know how to let it go…they’re like elephants! At least I think they’re like elephants, because I’ve heard elephants remember everything.  I’m learning…not everyone can be trusted, so watch what you say! At this stage in my middle-aged life (ouch), I’m learning, but it’s a work in progress. I’m learning how to be myself,  to not worry about what other’s think of me, to not judge others, to say nice things, to think nice things, to not think or say mean things, to see beyond the bitterness of another person, to keep my mouth shut AND to attempt to stay sane at the same time. It takes a great deal of prayer for me!

So…how do we learn to speak up when it’s appropriate or to stay silent when it’s best to do so? I’m not sure! I struggle… that’s why I’m beginning a study with a group of women. We’ll be trying to figure it out over the next couple of months, or at least get a grip on what God says about the topic.  I’ll let you know how it goes…wish me luck.


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Spinach and Raspberry Salad

Do you love it when you stumble upon a tasty dish; one you whip up quickly out of the slim picken’s that are in your refrigerator?

The refrigerator was empty and  I was looking for something light to have for lunch…something that would fit into the 21 Day Fix meal plan. #21dayfix  I had seen a couple of clean eating salads on Pinterest but it was one of those days, and I wasn’t inspired at all. I grabbed a couple of ingredients and whipped this up…and now it’s my favorite! The salad is so simple, it’s crazy and its also easy to substitute for some variety

Spinach and Raspberry Salad   (Single Serving)

  • 1 Cup Fresh Spinach
  • 1/4 – 1/3 C of Rasberries
  • Honey balsamic Dressing (1tbsp balsamic vinegar and 1/2 tbsp of honey) Make sure the honey is mixed in to the vinegar well since there is such a consistency difference here. Sometimes I stick my small container in the microwave for about 10 seconds to thin out the honey.

Drizzle the the spinach and fruit with your salad dressing and voila Yumminess! Sometimes I literally want to drink the salad dressing or lick the place…but I control myself.

Spinach raspberry salad

Variations:  Use strawberries or blueberries instead of raspberries (or mix them all), add some sliced almonds, pecans, or choose your favorite nut, add a teaspoon or so of feta cheese or even some red onion. Really…you can add just about anything! Well except hard boiled eggs…I didn’t really like that, but you may!

….so if you’re like me and you find yourself with no food in the house (Yes I’m exaggerating…but that’s what it feels like) give it a shot.

Enjoy!

 


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