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Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category

http://www.chocolateandgod.com  Bill has updated my blog so this will no longer have my posts, please check out our new site at http://www.chocolateandgod.com

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Ephesians 5:1-2

Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour.

Ephesians 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

How do you love?  Do you love like Christ loves or is your “love” something you use to manipulate others or feed your own selfish desires?  Loving others is not a mere suggestion by God it is a command.  Ephesians 5 tells us a lot about how to behave and how we are expected to love.

The divorce rate is up to about 60% and that includes Christians.  What is wrong with that picture?  If we are loving others the way we are told to by God then what would be the reason for divorce?  It takes two to make a marriage work so therefore it is necessary for both of you to be concerned about your walk with God.  If you are willing to settle for a mediocre walk with God then odds are you will at best have a mediocre marriage.  If one of you is sold out and the other is just along for the ride soaking up the benefits with no concern for their spouse then your marriage will never be all it can be.

The key according to these verses is for our love to be like Christ’s love, especially the men in a marriage.  Christ was willing to lay down his life for the church and a man’s love for his wife should be equal to that.  Women thrive under that kind of love.  Women need to love their husbands in a way that will show them respect.  Men thrive on being built up and knowing someone believes in them even when the chips are down.  A lot of times these actions are a choice.  We cannot always base things on the way we feel, we need to pray and ask God for the right feelings as we do what we know to be right as a spouse.  There may be times a woman isn’t easy for a man to love the way Christ did but if you do you may be surprised at the wife she turns into.  A man may not always really deserve your respect in every area but if you willingly choose to show respect based on what you know to really be true about him overlooking mistakes he makes you may be surprised at the man he turns into. We have to stop waiting for our spouses to do what is right!  You could wait forever and all the while they are waiting for you to change too and neither of you have accomplished anything other than being as miserable as you can be as your marriage slides even further down hill.

Satan is after our marriages and it is time we all take a stand and fight back!  It isn’t easy, no relationship is easy and they all require work!  If your marriage is struggling find a good counselor and or some great books on marriage, Love Dare is great, especially if both of you do it together.  There are so many little things that can be done to make each other feel special, pray and ask God for direction in that area.  While couples sit around and wait for the other person to do what is right Satan is winning battles right and left destroying their marriage right before their eyes.  Is it worth that to you?  Is it worth waiting for your spouse to make the first move?  Is it worth being too lazy to work at it?  God created marriage for a woman and a man to come together and to help the other be all they can be in life for God and for their family, that does not come by only being in it for yourself.  Take the time and evaluate how you look at your spouse and the “love” you have for them; is it all about you or all about them?  Doing special things for someone you love should be something that flows out of the love you have for them to the point that it almost has to be controlled, it shouldn’t be a major effort.

Take the time to read 1 Corinthians 13 – does that describe you and your love for your spouse?  We need to create an army of women committed to their marriages and if your spouse isn’t what he needs to be I would encourage you to try to get him to counseling – if he is unwilling don’t push it I would encourage you to just pray for both of you and still work at being who you need to be one day at a time.

Quote:

“Until you make peace with who you are you will never be content with what you have.” Doris Mortman

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Matthew 13:58  And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

Are you using the prayer board?  Are you praying for those that need prayer?  You don’t have to write a comment but let’s each try to get in there and

read the requests and praises and pray for each other!

Is there something you need or maybe want?  Take a look at Peter in Matthew 14 he just wanted to walk on the water like Jesus, was it necessary?  No.

But, God knew it would increase His faith, what do you think God could want to give you that would also increase your faith?  For me years ago it was a

frozen pizza. Then we look at verse 31 in chapter 14 and we see that Peter took his eyes off Jesus and started looking at his immediate circumstances

and he started to sink.  Jesus response was to grab him and to say, “Oh you of little faith, why did you doubt?”  What is He saying that to you about?

Is there something just around the corner that you are about to give up on? Ask God for a verse when you have your devotions and then cling to that

verse every time you start to doubt.

 

Somehow I feel as if we are missing out on God doing mighty works in our lives and that really saddens me!  I don’t want to miss out and I am sure

you don’t either!  The people that saw Jesus walking down the street knew if they could just touch the hem of his clothes they believed they would be

healed.  What they didn’t know was that they didn’t even have to touch him it was their belief in Him and His ability to heal that healed them.

 

Matthew 18:19 If two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father who is in heaven. I

am praying for you today that your faith will increase in whatever it is that you need or desire and that God will bless you beyond measure, that He

will bind Satan in any area He is working on in your life and that God will have complete victory in every area you surrender to Him today.  I am

praying too that God will give you faith beyond measure and that He will do mighty things in your life.  I ask that you would please pray the same for

me today as well!

 

Quote:  “If what you believe doesn’t affect how you live, then it isn’t very important.”  Dick Nogleberg

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Psalm 44:1-3

O God, we have heard with our ears, our fathers have told us what deeds you performed in their days, in the days of old: you with your own hand drove out the nations, but them you planted; you afflicted the peoples,

but them you set free; for not by their own sword did they win the land, nor did their own arm save them, but your right hand and your arm, and the light of your face, for you delighted in them.

It is so important for us to share with our children the things God has done in our lives over the years!  It is important for us to teach them to read their Bibles to learn about God but it is also vital for you to bring home to them what He has  personally done in your life.  God becomes even more real to our children when they see He is real and relevant in their lives today because the world is going to tell them the opposite!

There are times I am sure my children look at some of the stories that I remind them of concerning the things God has done; disciplines for poor choices that affected them with my apologies but then reminding them of the grace that comes with repentance and forgiveness, answers to prayer and amazing victories in our lives and they get a little tired of hearing them but those are the stories that remind them that God is real and active in our lives.

Victory often comes from remembering past victories in our lives so telling them the stories will also be a reminder to you as well.  The past can be a very good reference point for us to learn from and to encourage us as well, just don’t dwell there.  Take the time today to maybe even sit down and write out victories and answers to prayers you have had in your life and let that encourage you throughout this week reminding you of the faithfulness of God.

Quote:  “Defeat should never be a source of discouragement, but rather a fresh stimulus.”  Robert South

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Psalm 62:5

My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him.

 

Let’s take some personal inventory here a minute:  Where is your self

esteem?  Is it under the rug somewhere or maybe on a shelf for a while

because you don’t have time for yourself and I’m sorry but no one is truly

full of themselves.  They may be selfish but if you know someone who is over

the top seemingly arrogant and overflowing with self confidence they

probably don’t have ANY confidence in themselves at all and are over

compensating.

 

Where do you look to build your self esteem?  Are you counting on someone

else to affirm you?  Let me just say Ladies, I have been there and tried

that idea expecting friends, family or the man in my life to affirm that I

was “ok” and that doesn’t work!  On good days that can be great, but then

along comes a day when they say or do something that hurts your feelings and

all of a sudden everything they have ever said that was positive went

straight down the drain and you don’t believe it any more.

 

Your self worth can only come from God!  He created you and sees you as

beautiful and worthy of His time!  Seriously have you ever thought about

just that thought alone?  The Almighty God who created the Universe by just

speaking it into existence sees you for who He created you to be and He says

you are worthy of His time!  As the Bible says in Romans 8:31 “If God be for

us, then who can be against us?”

 

This is important, in order for you to fully realize your full potential you

must have a healthy self esteem!  You are worth it, God says you are!  We

all have our days where we feel like we must be at the bottom of the barrel

but I have found that you can’t lay there and wallow in it, you have to pick

yourself up, brush yourself off and wait silently for God alone to meet your

expectations.

Quote:

“The measure of a truly great man is the courtesy with which he treats lesser men.”  Anonymous

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It is a little bit cooler in TN today, note I am saying a LITTLE bit cooler!  It is August so it is never really cool but I have been thoroughly enjoying the occasional breeze we have had lately.  Bill and I are heading to Indiana this weekend for Pulse Festival.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone.

I hope you had the chance to check out the books yesterday!  I am truly looking for some more good reading for this fall so I will be sharing more as I find them.

Let’s get to the recipes:

Grilled Shrimp Orzo Salad

Prep Time:  25 Min  Grill Time:  25

Ingredients

  • 1 large ear sweet corn in husk
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/3 cup uncooked whole wheat orzo pasta
  • 6 fresh asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 1/2 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon Caribbean jerk seasoning
  • 1 small sweet red pepper, chopped

  • DRESSING:
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Directions

  • Carefully peel back corn husk to within 1 in. of bottom; remove silk. Brush corn with oil. Rewrap corn in husk and secure with kitchen string. Grill corn, covered, over medium heat for 25-30 minutes or until tender, turning often.
  • Meanwhile, cook orzo according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cold water; set aside.
  • Thread asparagus spears onto two parallel metal or soaked wooden skewers. Rub shrimp with jerk seasoning; thread onto two skewers. Grill asparagus and shrimp, covered, over medium heat for 5-8 minutes or until asparagus is crisp-tender and shrimp turn pink, turning once.
  • Cut corn from cob; place in a large bowl. Cut asparagus into 1-in. pieces; add to bowl. Add the shrimp, orzo and pepper. In a small bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients. Pour over salad; toss to coat. Yield: 2 servings.
Olive Zucchini Spread
Prep Time:  20 Min.  + Chilling

Ingredients

  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese
  • 3 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1 jar (7-1/2 ounces) marinated artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pimiento-stuffed olives, chopped
  • 1 can (4-1/4 ounces) chopped ripe olives
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1 French bread baguette, sliced

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the first 11 ingredients; beat until blended.
  • Transfer to a serving bowl; cover and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. Serve with baguette slices. Yield: 6 cups.
Berry Patch Pie
Prep Time:  30 Min   + Cooling

Ingredients

  • Pastry for single-crust pie (9 inches)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 cups halved fresh strawberries
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions

  • On a lightly floured surface, unroll pastry. Transfer to a 9-in. pie plate. Trim pastry to 1/2 in. beyond edge of plate; flute edges. Line unpricked pastry with a double thickness of heavy-duty foil. Bake at 450° for 8 minutes. Remove foil; bake 5-7 minutes longer or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
  • Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch. Stir in berries and lemon juice. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until mixture just comes to a boil; pour into prepared crust. Cool completely on a wire rack. Yield: 8 servings.
Have a blessed day!!
Janet Scott

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Psalm 38:9-10

O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you. My heart throbs; my strength fails me, and the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me.

David was obviously distraught and overwhelmed at this point in his life and yet he knew that God was watching and would deliver him.  Have you ever felt this way or do you know of someone who does today?  David was at the point where even the joy that shone in his eyes in previous days was gone!

God loves you beyond measure and he will strengthen you, heal your heart and give you back your joy.  If it isn’t you that is suffering right now maybe there is someone you know could use your ability to show them the love of Christ today.  God is ever present and cares about every heartache and trial we face.

From the way this Psalm starts and the title, it looks as though it could have been written after he had sinned and he was depressed over his consequences and the fact that he felt as though his friends had left and his enemies were going to kick him while he was down.  Our view of life can get distorted a bit when we are down if we do not keep our eyes on God.  We can even get to the point where we feel that everyone is against us when really they may be just trying to stay out of our way or they aren’t quite sure what to say or do.

If you are in a position to help someone else who is down ask God for direction and keep the idea in mind that they may not seem receptive but do your best to be there once they are.  Don’t allow yourself to be dragged down into their despair but pray for them and ask God to show them His way of escape.

If it is you who is down today ask God to guide you and to allow you to feel and see His love even in others who may actually be trying to help.  Trust Him to deliver and heal you today, He cares and He hasn’t missed a tear you have shed over your situation.

Quote:

“Remember happiness doesn’t depend on who you are or what you have; it depends solely upon what you think.”  Dale Carnegie

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