Reaching Perfection

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December 2 – “Reaching Perfection”

{Today’s devotion from¬†Streams¬†in the Desert was just what I needed to read this morning. My prayer is this will bless you and encourage you right where you are. I love my God meets me. I pray the same for you! -Rachael}

For it was fitting for him, for whom and through whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through sufferings.‚ÄĒHeb 2:10 NET

Steel is iron plus fire. Soil is rock, plus heat, or glacier crushing. Linen is flax plus the bath that cleans, the comb that separates, and the flail that pounds, and the shuttle that weaves. Human character must have a plus attached to it. The world does not forget great characters. But great characters are not made of luxuries, they are made by suffering.

I heard of a mother who brought into her home as a companion to her own son, a crippled boy who was also a hunchback. She had warned her boy to be very careful in his relations to him, and not to touch the sensitive part of his life but go right on playing with him as if he were an ordinary boy. She listened to her son as they were playing; and after a few minutes he said to his companion: ‚ÄúDo you know what you have got on your back?‚ÄĚ The little hunchback was embarrassed, and he hesitated a moment. The boy said: ‚ÄúIt is the box in which your wings are; and some day God is going to cut it open, and then you will fly away and be an angel.‚ÄĚ

Some day, God is going to reveal the fact to every Christian, that the very principles they now rebel against, have been the instruments which He used in perfecting their characters and moulding them into perfection, polished stones for His great building yonder. ‚ÄĒCortland Myers

Suffering is a wonderful fertilizer to the roots of character. The great object of this life is character. This is the only thing we can carry with us into eternity. ‚Ķ To gain the most of it and the best of it is the object of probation. ‚ÄĒAustin Phelps

‚ÄúBy the thorn road and no other is the mount of vision won.‚ÄĚ

30 Day Scripture Writing Plan for November

30 Day Scripture Writing Plan for November

As you know, November has exactly 30 days in it. This make November the perfect month to do any type of challenge. Many people have done the thankful challenge. That’s where you choose something to be thankful for everyday. Well, a friend (Valerie) shared this on Facebook and I immediately¬†loved it. I felt it was unique and focuses on God.

I have started the plan and I have to say it¬†is wonderful. If you have never copied out scripture from the Bible into a journal, then this is a great way to try it! You simply copy out the scripture and then write any thoughts you have about the verses. God’s word is alive and He will use the Bible to speak to your personally.

Here is the plan:

Thanksgiving 30 Day Scripture Writing Plan_Page_1

To download the plan from the person who created it, click here.

Image via http://www.swtblessings.com

Gluten Free Tips

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I cut gluten out of my diet 8 1/2 months ago. At first it was pretty hard. But as the days went on, I realized I just felt a lot better. No more bloating or stomach cramps. Less headaches. And my thyroid was no longer hyperactive. Amazing, right? I thought so.

Anyway, over the last 8 months I’ve learned a thing or too. I thought I would share some of the knowledge I gained, in hopes of helping someone else.

  • Gluten free pizza at Costco: I love pizza. I’ve tried a lot of different ones. But I always come back to Costco. They have a great gluten free pizza in the frozen section.
  • Soy sauce: regular soy sauce contains gluten. And I love Asian food. Especially sushi. If I an find a sushi without soy sauce soaked seaweed, then I eat it dipped in kikkoman brand soy sauce. Yum!
  • Flour: There are a lot of different gluten free flours to chose from in grocery stores. Thanks to my good friend Meriam, she told me about Pamela’s flour blends. And it has become my favorite. I use it to make pancakes, waffles, thicken soups, etc.
  • Glutino makes tons of delicious gluten free options. My favorites are pretzel sticks, oreo cookies, and buttery crackers.
  • Stores: Kroger and Publix both carry a lot of gluten free options. And surprisingly, Aldi has a lot of gluten free options.

Do you have any tips for being gluten free? If so, please share with me!

A Get Along Jar

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If your kids are anything like mine, then they fight. I’m not sure exactly why so much. But they just know how to push each others buttons. I’ve noticed over the last few months there is a pattern. They miss each other during the week, so in the weekday afternoons they play nicely. But on the weekends by Saturday afternoon, they are both in separate rooms.

Well, I am tired of it! Every weekend it’s the same thing – Selah yells at Finn and Finn tells on Selah. Over and over again. Now, I’m not writing this as a venting session. I’m writing this because I’m hoping I found a solution. There are tons of blog posts about this topic. But I came upon this one on Pinterest.I liked it because she provides a bunch of ideas as well as a templates print out. All I had to do was get a mason jar, print the ideas, and glue everything together! When they start fighting, I simply point them to the get along jar. They choose a craft stick and then do what it says. Fingers crossed this works!

Click here for the templates

Then grab a mason jar and here are some ideas you can add to craft sticks:

  1. Say three nice things about the other person.
  2. Chose one of your sibling’s chores and do it for them.
  3. Turn on some music and dance together for at least five minutes.
  4. Read a storybook together, taking it in turns to each read a page.
  5. Set the table together.
  6. Choose GRACE.
  7. Clear out the car.
  8. Make up a ‚Äėgetting along song‚Äô and perform it for the family.
  9. Make the other person’s bed.
  10. Draw or write an apology letter to the other person.
  11. Write a poem for the other person.
  12. Clean the back deck.
  13. Get each other a glass of water and sit outside to drink it.
  14. Draw something positive about your sibling.
  15. Sweep the floor together.
  16. Make each other a ‚Äėsorry‚Äô card.
  17. Dust the furniture in a certain room together
  18. Play Simon Says for six minutes, with each person being Simon for three minutes.
  19. Jump on the trampoline together for at least five minutes.
  20. Go have a real wrestling match outside.
  21. Draw a picture of each other.
  22. Give each other a big hug.
  23.  Play a board game together.
  24. Put away your sibling’s laundry.
  25. Go and check the mail together.
  26. Draw and write a positive about your sibling.
  27. Clean the bathroom sinks together.
  28. Pick up the other person’s toys.
  29. Do 10 sit-ups, 10 star jumps and five push-ups.
  30. Tell each other a story.
  31. Draw a picture together
  32. Tell each other a secret.
  33. Do a kind deed together for someone else.
  34. Ask your sibling to tell you one thing they would like you to do differently.
  35. Clean the sliding glass doors together (one on each side).

My hope is this will help them to learn how to work out their differences on their own. Because of course, that’s how it works in the real world as they get older:)

Any other “get along” ideas you can add to my list?

Heart Check

HeartCheck

Recently, I have been studying the book of Genesis and the book of Matthew. It’s been a great study so far. And so interesting to me all the parallels¬†in the themes from the first book of the Old¬†Testament and the first book of the New Testament. The biggest one I have pulled out is – the heart. Since the beginning of men and women, God has always been concerned with our hearts.

Starting with Noah’s time, you read that God saw the hearts of the people and that their hearts were¬†evil. That was the purpose of the flood. God was wiping the slate clean. However it didn’t work. Hence the need for our¬†Rescuer.

And in the gospel according to Matthew, Jesus lays out the new laws. He makes us realize that we are not perfect. We easily can break all the 10 commandments in our hearts. We may not murder, but if we have hate for a friend than we have committed murder in our heart.¬†Or what about thinking a sexual thought about the opposite sex? That’s adultery in our hearts, if we are married.

How does it make you feel to know that God can see into your heart? Uncomfortable, squirmy? Yeah, me too. But, it’s the truth. God can see what our heart intentions are by every move we make. Thank goodness our Rescuer came and died on the cross for our sins. If we confess that Jesus is Lord of our life, we can cross the bridge to God. Jesus makes us clean.

I don’t know about you, but I needed a Rescuer. And I’m so grateful that thought I’m not perfect, Jesus is. And I am checking my heart now…

If you are a Christ follower, when was the last time you checked your heart? 

And if you are in need of a Rescuer, send me a message or comment on this post. I would love to give you more information on freedom!

Loss and Restoration

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This weekend we will celebrate 2 years since our house fire and 1 year being in our new home. Celebrate. Yes, you heard me right. We are choosing to celebrate the fact that God makes “beauty from the ashes.” The past 2 years have been days, months, and years of deep growth for me. I have learned so much about myself. God has revealed Himself to me in many ways. What I have discovered is this weekend in October will always be very special to me. It’s a weekend that merges together a loss and a restoration. I pray that I will never take this weekend lightly. I wish there was a word for this type of occurrence. But I couldn’t seem to find or come up with one such word.

Anyway, this weekend we will celebrate the following things:

  • God’s provision: He kept us safe. He provided for us when we were in need. He led us to sell our lot and move on. He worked out the details for us to live in Hunter’s Walk.
  • God’s blessing: We believe that everything we have is a blessing from God. We are just stewards of¬†it all. Remembering this helps us to live with a Heaven perspective. We also¬†still give¬†God thanks for the many people¬†that helped us over the last 2 years.
  • God’s teaching: God has taught us so many lessons this year. Mourning will be comforted, God will supply all we need, Grieving over loss takes time, God’s will always prevails, we make plans but God directs us, and many others.

Will you joining us in giving the Lord praise this weekend for all He has done? 

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And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

“The¬†Lord¬†gave, and the¬†Lord¬†hath taken away; blessed be the name of the¬†Lord.‚ÄĚ Job 1:21b

New Christian Station – 105.1

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Have you heard of K-Love? If not – I’ll tell you a bit about it. It’s a Christian radio station that is just awesome. It plays some Christian songs you might have not heard before. I just wanted to share with you! The station to tune to is 105.1 FM. I am so very excited that K-Love is here¬†in Cumming, GA!

I hope you will add it to one of your favorite stations like I have. Have a blessed day!