Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee

I LOVE LOVE LOVE all things pumpkin, especially pumpkin spice coffee. I look forward to fall every year because I know pumpkin will be in high supply. Most times, flavored coffee can be pricey. I love the pumpkin spice line Starbucks has but I do not love the price that comes with it. Also, the nearest Starbucks is at least 20 minutes from my home. I also enjoy the Green Mountain Coffee pumpkin spice K-cups, but I can go through those things like water! Leave it up to me to make my own! It's pretty simple, really. I have the best results with my good ole fashioned coffee pot...but I still adore my Keurig. Here's how I do it: I use 3 tablespoons of my favorite ground coffee per 12 oz of water then I sprinkle 1/8-1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice over the grounds and brew as usual. To my cup I put about 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar and as much cream as I like, which isn't much(you could also add a dab of maple syrup~or vanilla extract, but I don't care for it). That's it! Pretty easy and very cost effective. You could even mix up lots of this at once to save time in the mornings.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"Judge not lest ye be judged"

Let me preface this post by saying that I am fully aware of the hot water I will undoubtedly get myself into by saying what I'm going to say. It's nothing new to me. I seem to ruffle feathers every time I open my mouth.

If you are a true follower of Jesus Christ, this picture probably stirred up a bit of anger in you. It sure did in me. This is just a snippet of the many insults to Jesus, and His followers, I have witnessed on Pinterest. The idea that Jesus was in any way 'gay' because He hung out with 12 men is absolutely ridiculous and anyone who sides in that philosophy is trying to justify their own sinful lives. I see all kinds of 'pins' mocking Christians, calling us judgmental and quoting scripture to prove their point. Really, a non-believer quoting scripture to me makes about as much sense as me quoting WebMD to a medical doctor. I wouldn't know what in the world I was talking about. Unless I study the actual medical books and learn from actual doctors, I have nothing to offer the medical world. Here's the thing, in Matthew 7:1 when Jesus says, "Judge not, lest you be judged," He was speaking of Christians judging other Christians. Also, using only Matt 7:1 is entirely incomplete. This verse is not speaking to not judging at all -- it is speaking to not judging unfairly or any other cheap and selfish way. Here are a FEW examples of His desire for us to judge:

# 1Cor. 6:2-3 Do you not know that the saints [the saved; Christians] will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!
# Prov. 3:21 My son, preserve sound judgment and discernment, do not let them out of your sight;
# John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
# Jer. 22:3 Thus saith the LORD; Execute ye judgment and righteousness...
# Phil. 1:10 so that you may be able to discern [judge] what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ...
# Phil. 1:7 It is right for me to feel this way about all of you [judge you]...

Look at John 7:24. There, Jesus tells us to judge, but to do so righteously. Righteously means to use the Truth of the Word to discern sins and not by appearances only. In 1Cor. 6:2-3 Jesus authorizes us to judge. Judge we must else we could not discern good from bad, proper from improper, righteousness from evil. But judge behavior, not the individual; the deed not the doer; the choice not the chooser. The individual/doer/chooser is accountable for his/her deed/choice, but judge the deed/choice in your judgment. Jesus could see a king in a shepherd boy. And an Apostle in a murderer. So while we must judge one's behavior we must we try to nurture the goodness in an individual: to separate the deed from the doer. Yes, we do have the right and the authority to judge the behavior of others as long as we honor and obey His Word in doing so. That Jesus is the only one who can judge is speaking to judging whether someone is or is not saved. Neither you nor I nor anyone else who ever draws a breath (except Jesus) has the authority to say whether another has or has not been saved. Only Jesus can make that judgment since only He can give Salvation. Nor may we who discern poor behavior based on His Word think of ourselves as "better than" the one whose behavior we judge as poor.

The Bible provides quite enough knowledge and understanding to make each of us a righteous judge of behavior, even and especially our own if we r-e-a-d it and not just look at the words and use the total of what He says, not just the pieces that seem to fit an agenda or those that seem to fill our own bellies.

Anyway, back to Pinterest...
I love 'pinning' things but I must say that I have witnessed so much anger, and hatred about believers on Pinterest that I feel the need to mentally prepare myself before I sign on. It's very sad to me. A man was just sentenced to death in Iran for not renouncing his beliefs. Are you going to tell me that he's just not intelligent or is worried about not looking like a better person? Jesus freaks die every day for their beliefs. But we forget that our words, our jokes, our sarcasm get the ball rolling towards violence. If what you preach is 'tolerance' and 'acceptance' and there is nothing tolerant and accepting about you to those who base their beliefs and life standards on the Bible then you are nothing but a big, fat hypocrite, plain and simple.

Now, to address the question "Why does God let so many bad things happen?" It is a very good question. Most don't want to face the truth but HE didn't choose for this to happen, WE DID! Adam and Eve chose to turn against God and that is when sin entered in the world. From then on mankind's choices have hurt one another. When we sin it hurts us and others. It's hard to hear but I tell you the truth. It is because we turned our backs on God that there is pain in this world. Jesus came to make a way so we can be saved from the punishment of our sins. He took the death penalty in our place so if we trust in Him we can be saved when we die and face God. No matter how good you say you are by man's standards, by God's perfect standard if you have told one lie you're guilty and you broke the 10 commandments, that is God's law. We are all guilty ...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

What I Believe

Many times I have sat back and kept my mouth shut when all I really wanted to do is shout my views from the rooftop for all to hear. The time has come...I am so sick and tired of being belittled because my views are not 'politically correct.' I am a strong, opinionated Christian woman and I have things to say. I assume since you have made the choice to open this blog post then you are open to listening to my views. Here's what I believe: I believe Jesus is God's one and only Son. I believe in family and that a woman who answers God's calling to take care of her family is NOT less of a woman. I believe that a man is the leader of the home and that his wife should submit to his authority. I believe that it is a man's job to financially support his wife and children. I believe that a man should be his wife's strongest supporter and that a woman should be her husband's soft place to fall in this world. I believe homosexuality is a sin. I believe that marriage is only between ONE MAN AND ONE WOMAN and that those who either approves of or participates in otherwise will one day be judged by an Almighty God for that approval and/or participation. I believe there is no such thing as a 'gray area.' I believe drinking alcohol and doing drugs is WRONG-nothing good ever comes of either. I believe women who dress overtly sexy are doing so for attention and not for their own self-esteem. I believe that as women we have the heavy responsibility of being sure that nothing we wear, do, or say has the potential to cause a member of the opposite sex to fall. I believe in second, third, and fourth chances as well as forgiveness. I believe that if a person identifies himself/herself as a Christian their life should reflect that very important and life-changing decision. I believe in heaven and that hell is a real and terrible place and that God doesn't send us there-we send ourselves by choosing the world and ourselves over Him. I believe in satan, the devil, and demons. I believe that demons lie to people because satan's ultimate goal is to keep as many people from a relationship with God as he possibly can. I believe that anyone who says there are many ways to heaven is wrong. I believe that sex before and outside of marriage is a sin and when you know better you should be expected to do better. I believe abortion is murder and should not be brushed off as someone's 'choice.' I believe people who say 'only God can judge me' really know they are doing something against God's will and just don't want to face it at the moment. I believe that EVERYONE makes judgments of people based on current actions & behaviors and anyone who says 'don't judge me' is being very hypocritical. I believe that a person can give up their salvation by choosing not to follow God's rules for His followers. I believe mothers & fathers who choose not speak to their children or be involved in their day-to-day lives for weeks at a time are anything but good parents. I believe that a person must be physically & emotionally present in another person's life to be considered a great friend, parent, sibling, or spouse by that person. I believe that it is a parent's responsibility to be their child's parent and not their 'friend.' I believe that there is a huge and undeniable difference between an occasional sin and living a life of habitual sin. I believe that repentance is admitting you have done wrong in the eyes of God and doing your very best not to do it again. I believe that what we do on this side of the cross matters in a major way.

I believe that I was once guilty of many things in the above paragraph. I believe that it's only by God's grace that I didn't die in my sins and spend eternity in hell. I believe that God has forgiven me and through Him I have the strength to deny myself daily, take up my cross and follow Him. I believe God chose me to be the mother of 4 beautiful, strong daughters and 2 handsome, smart stepsons and to be the wife of an amazing & strong man. I believe that God's grace and mercy is sufficient enough to save you and CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Popcorn-one of my favorite snacks!

I love to do what I call "mindless eating." The problem is, it doesn't always love me. Chips are my favorite; but unhealthy-oh yeah! Popcorn to the rescue! It can be made as a sweet OR salty snack so I'm really in love. Now, I'm not talking about the microwave junk here. I'm talking about the real popcorn sold in bags that will make gallons of popcorn. By the way, the stuff is cheap! Here's what I do given that I don't have an air popper: Put 1-2 tablespoons of extra-virgin coconut oil in a heavy, large pot (I promise, it won't taste sweet or like coconuts). Be sure you have a lid. Let warm on medium to medium-high then add about 3 tablespoons popcorn kernels. PUT THE LID ON! After a few minutes the poppin' will begin. Just shake occasionally until most of the kernels are popped. Now, you can dress it up. Sprinkle it with garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and a bit of cheddar cheese powder for pizza flavored. For taco flavor just sprinkle with taco seasoning, store bought or homemade. The possibilities are endless. If you wanna make some to satisfy your sweet tooth just sprinkle with splenda and cinnamon or even some of a pouch of hot chocolate mix.

If you don't mind the unhealthy aspect of it, you can add butter and salt to it but coconut oil is actually good for you. Don't buy into the misconceptions about it. Dr. Oz agrees with me. Just check out his site and see for yourself. And don't be surprised when you find yourself using it as a moisturizer. Trust me. This stuff is like a miracle in a jar!"s about time for me to make the popcorn! Happy Snackin', y'all!

Friday, May 27, 2011

I'm one of them...

I thought people who loved Jesus were freaky! I admit I did my share of rolling my eyes and steering clear of people that constantly talked about their Jesus. I found myself whispering under my breath, "Enough already" or "Here they go again". I mean total FREAKS! It was okay that I was a freak for fun with friends or my family, but those were things I could see and touch. In my mind, Jesus was a history lesson I had heard about in my occasional childhood visits to church. He was a Sunday kind of thing and not very relevant to my present day. I was the girl that sat in Sunday school praying with a vengeance that the teacher wouldn't call on me to answer any questions. If only I had been praying as hard for my salvation...

I remember going to church with a friend of mine in middle school once during revival. For me, the 'only go to church twice a year' kind of girl, this was quite an experience. Later in life I did my own thing, without giving God even a tiny say so. At the age of 22 I started feeling Jesus wooing me, but it freaked me out!
I stopped listening to the Holy Spirit and continued to seek my security and my worth in other feel-good things. I do remember that the harder I searched, the bigger the void became. Pleasures were short lived and the constant running to fill the hole in my heart became tiring.

Nine years later I found myself in a bigger mess than even I had ever imagined. It was then that I began thinking back on those 'freaks' who had witnessed to me over the years and I knew that He was the only one who I could turn to to give me a sense of stability. I gave my life to Jesus in September of 2007 and things have been a whirlwind ever since. I get it now! I am one of those freaks. There is a good kind of freaky that just gets you talking and changing everything about your life. To be honest, at times it is just as hard as that life I had when I was searching, but now it has purpose and there is a power that comes from the One I am freaky about. A power that can get you through anything. A power that is there beside you through it all and gives you a security that nothing in the world can provide.

So now that I am one of those freaky Jesus lovers, I have a lot of people I care about that I need to be freaky for until they get it. I am sure my words, my actions, and even my blogs wreak of freak. That is okay. I have a responsibility to help plant some seeds and let it "get on you". I wouldn't be where I am today if it wasn't for those unselfish freaks in my life. I love them!!!!! I now know that I mattered to them. More importantly, I know that with all my poor choices and my junk, there is a Jesus who desires to hang out with me. Not to punish me, but to fill the void that only He can fill.

So, for those of you who roll your eyes and cannot wait for freaks like me to hush up and leave you alone I ask you to step out of your comfort zone and hang out with the freaks. This world is full of them but make sure you hang out with the kind of freaks that you want to get on you. It may be uncomfortable at first, but it is just the thing you don't even realize you are looking for! I have been on both sides of the spectrum and, I tell you with reckless abandon, I prefer this side.

Jesus sees you, He hears you, what you say matters to Him...