A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

Not all preachers stand behind a pulpit on Sunday morning at 10:45 am and again at 6 pm.  Anyone who claims the name of Christ is to be sharing the good news of His gospel with others in any way possible.  Sometimes it means writing a blog post every day, feeling humbled in your heart and a bit jumbled in your brain because of dyslexia.  God can use what I write though – not because it’s so riveting and exciting…  but because it’s what God wants me to write.  A wise writer once told me that I need to share what I write whether I think it’s good or not because God knows somebody who needs to read it.  He’ll make sure what I write gets seen by the right people.

Have you ever seen someone get reproved or rebuked by someone with patience?  It’s rare that a person can actually do that because there’s usually some degree of emotion involved and sadly, it’s generally anger.  But I got to witness a pastor reprove and rebuke someone on his staff once and by the time he was finished, I felt as if I’d been in the most wonderful class ever on diplomacy and tact.  I knew that God’s Holy Spirit was guiding every gesture he made and every word he said.  He got the point across and there were absolutely no hurt feelings and he didn’t have a bit of damage control to worry about.  Thank God! 

To exhort means to urge, advise, or caution earnestly; admonish urgently.  It can be dicey to do this, but there are times when it’s necessary.  Again, if we will take time before rushing in to seek God’s Holy Spirit and let Him guide our words and actions, it’s amazing how much better things will go.  Nobody wants to hurt feelings, but when there are differences of opinion, rather than knock heads together as you’d do in your own wisdom – ask God to help you as you negotiate a compromise in the situation.  Blessed are the peacemakers.  There’s a blessing waiting for you if you’ll do things God’s way.  Have you read the story of Jonah?  I rest my case. 

I keep thinking about that last phrase…  with COMPLETE patience and teaching.  That’s impossible to do in our own strength!  The natural man has nearly zero patience.  If you don’t believe me, drive around downtown Wichita at 5 pm on any weeknight.  Horns honk and fingers flip…  um, exercise.  Yep – road rage…  the struggle is real, folks.

God gave His all for me – He just keeps on loving me.  He hasn’t given up on me, so I need to hang in there with others.  Only through God’s Holy Spirit can we develop COMPLETE patience and teaching.  It’s a preacher’s job to lead by example and while yes they’re human (we do get that) – but like every Christian who has been a Christian for a number of years, there should be that desire to be patient with the congregation.  Is it easy?  Nope.  Is it possible with God’s help?  Yep.

Today is the first day of CONSIDER CHRISTIANITY WEEK!!!  I hope you will accept Jesus into your heart and life today.   If you are a Christian, don’t forget to share your faith with someone this week.   

Well, 2 Timothy 4:2 is my birthday verse.  I’m 56 years old today – woo-hoo!  I wrote a silly little poem from my silly little heart.

I really do love the rain.  I loved it more before I wore glasses because the rain messes my lenses up – but I still love the rain.  I can remember having snow a couple of times on my birthday, which I’m not a big fan of – one time I had to cancel a birthday party because we had so much snow.  That was a major bummer all the way around.

You know I love donkeys, right?  Well – if you didn’t know before, now you do.  Look what I found…

Keep sharing your faith wherever you go, and ask God’s Holy Spirit to help you have COMPLETE patience and teaching with everyone.  Just plant the gospel seeds.  The world won’t be forced with an iron fist and we can’t yell anyone to the altar.  We just have to love folks and pray for them.  🙂

 

 

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A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (26)There are times in life when you have to eat cake – one of those times is your birthday, right?  Does that mean your blood glucose has to get out of whack?  Not long ago I would have said, “Yes – yes it does.”  Now I’ve found a great recipe for chocolate cake that serves two people – and takes just three minutes to whip up!  Perfect for a couple like my husband and myself.sacher-cake-1194524_1920

THREE MINUTE CHOCOLATE CAKE

Makes 2 servings – 9 carbs – 4 net carbs

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 C. almond flour

1 Tbs. cocoa

1/4 tsp. baking powder

3 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. Splenda

2 Tbs. butter, melted

1 Tbs. water

1 egg

INSTRUCTIONS:

Mix flour, cocoa, baking powder and Splenda in a 2 cup glass measuring cup.  Stir in butter, water and egg.  Mix well.  Scrape batter down evenly with a rubber spatula.  Cover with plastic wrap and vent by cutting a small slit in the center.  Microwave on HIGH for 1 minute until set but still a little moist on top.  Cool slightly and serve warm with Reddi Whip.

If you are used to eating wedding cake with butter cream frosting, this will probably not taste wonderful to you, but if you’re like most of us and haven’t eaten wedding cake for years – and you avoid sweets as a general rule – you will notice that almond flour has a sort of “mealy” consistency, but if you can get past that, and appreciate that this cake will not cause your blood glucose to spike, you may find yourself yelling YEE-HAW because hey – this is the closest thing to chocolate cake you’ve eaten in a long time!

Almond flour is also much more expensive than all-purpose flour.  I rationalize spending the extra money by thinking of how much it cost to buy insulin every month.  My Levemir was costing about $400 a month.  A small sack of almond flour costs about $7.  I won’t eat too many things with it – but once in a while I want some pancakes or waffles – or some chocolate cake for a birthday celebration.

Isn’t it fantastic that we can eat a low carb diet that sometimes includes cocoa – and more to the point, know that our blood glucose will be happy?  I’m just so tickled with this discovery!

 

BIRTHDAY #55

TL 4-2 BIRTHDAY #55

4-2 PERKS & PITFALLS

Last night I got such a sweet present from Lucinda Berry Hill.  Thank you, my friend!  You’ve made turning the ol’ double nickel so much better!  🙂  I love that basket heart too – don’t you???

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God has blessed me with another year of life!  Today I am the ol’ double nickel…  old enough to receive a senior citizen discount at most restaurants and I could join AARP (but that will never happen because I am not a fan…).  I am a fan of good health, happiness, faith and joy.  I’m thankful for every day God gives me to begin again and do better with His help.

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved,  compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and,  if one has a complaint against another,  forgiving each other;  as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.  – Colossians 3:12-13

Of all the things I could pray for, today I ask God to give me more compassion for everyone and everything around me.  I want to be more relatable than ever because it’s what God wants for me.  He wants all of us to be more gentle and kind with one another.  I KNOW I need to have more patience and compassion for those young drivers…  Lord help me with road rage!

Until he extends the circle of his compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace.  –  Albert Schweitzer

You are not going to believe this, but shortly after I wrote this post, Lucinda sent me a poem to design.  As I read it – the little blurb about compassion just reached out and slapped me!  I have to share it today.  I love how God guides both of us to write – but it’s especially cool when we’re both directed to write so similarly!  I just got chills when I read this.12571279_1738613263049803_574237969_n

Yes – I will make an effort to bring calmness where I walk, to show kindness and compassion, and pointing all to God.  SEE why I got chills up my spine???  WE LOVE HOW GOD WORKS

Love you, my sister in Christ!  ❤

My husband gave me a a 3.5 qt. Dutch oven.  Of course I’ll be trying it out today.  So, let me share the recipe with you.  Just one more thing…  if you are not a vinegar fan, you may want to add a couple of packets of Splenda or Truvia to this.  It’s got a pretty strong vinegar flavor.  😉

Vinegar-Braised Chicken & Onions (serves 6)

Ingredients:

2 lbs. pearl onions

Kosher salt

3 Tbs. olive oil

8 oz. pancetta (Italian bacon), cut into 1/4″ pieces

4 cloves garlic, peeled & crushed

5 lbs. chicken pieces (I use thighs & legs)

Freshly ground black pepper

3/4 c. balsamic vinegar

3/4 c. red wine vinegar

2 c. low-sodium chicken broth

1/2 c. golden raisins

2 bay leaves

Directions:

  • Cook onions in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender, 5-8 minutes. Drain and let cool. Trim root ends; peel.
  • Meanwhile, heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add pancetta to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until fat is rendered and pancetta is brown, 8-10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to a large bowl.
  • Add onions to same pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 8-10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring often, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer onions and garlic to bowl with pancetta.
  • Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in batches, add chicken to pot skin side down and cook, turning, until browned on all sides, 10-15 minutes per batch; transfer to bowl with onions.
  • Carefully drain fat from pot and return to medium-high heat. Add both vinegars to pot and bring to a boil, stirring and scraping up any browned bits from bottom of pot. Add broth, raisins, bay leaves, and reserved chicken, pancetta, onions, and garlic to pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, partially covered, until chicken is fork-tender, 35-40 minutes.
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer chicken and onions to a large platter. Skim fat from cooking liquid and discard. Remove bay leaves, and season sauce with salt and pepper. Spoon sauce over chicken and onions.

For dessert we will probably have some fresh sliced strawberries with whipped topping.  Sounds like a great birthday dinner to me!  🙂

KEN CARSON’S BIRTHDAY

TL 3-13 KEN CARSON'S BIRTHDAY

Ken Carson, also known as the KEN DOLL, was introduced by Mattel on this day in 1961.  He was the fictional boyfriend of the BARBIE DOLL, introduced 2 years earlier.  Barbie’s boyfriend had a snazzy line of clothing and accessories.  Barbie & Ken met on the set of a TV commercial in 1961.

Ken’s father was a doctor, and poor Ken has held at least forty occupations.  He just never found himself, I guess.  Somehow he’s able to afford the best stuff – the best clothes and cars.  Hmm…  obviously it’s a fantasy!

So, Ken Carson is 55 years old today.  He still has his boyish looks and irresistible charm, so life has been good to him.  Maybe he has learned the lesson we all have to learn eventually – stuff is just stuff and you can’t take it with you.  He’s decided to take care of his health and say his prayers because he knows that it’s best to trust God with his life.

If Ken is 55, that means that Barbie is now 57.  Hmm…  I imagine some things have dropped – I’m guessing down around her knees.  LOL…  well, that’s life.

It was never clear what their relationship was.  I think many details were left to the child playing with the dolls – to their imagination.  Many of us had Barbie and Ken weddings.  My Barb and Ken got married a few times, with cousin Skipper standing up as their witness.

At one point, my Ken doll had more clothes in his closet than Barbie.  Fortunately I quickly took care of that problem and bought a ton of clothes and accessories for Barbie from my girlfriend’s mom, who made doll clothes.

Ken & Barbie are an important part of many real life plans we make as little girls.  Through them, we think about our futures and what we want to do with our lives.  Happy Birthday, Ken – you good-lookin’ 55 year old!  😉

 

 

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY (2)

Baby, take a bow! – Unknown

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Happy Birthday, Mary!

Just in case you don’t think anything (or anyone) great comes from Kansas…  today we are going to say Happy Birthday to actress/singer Mary McCarty!  On this day in 1923 this talented little powerhouse was born in Winfield, Kansas!

My mother didn’t push.  She aimed me.  – Mary McCarty

McCarty was better known as a supporting actress than a leading lady, but let’s face it – it’s those supporting performances that make the stars shine even brighter!  She made a real splash early in life, beginning as a torch singer at a night spot called Hollywood Tropics, and ending up in front of the bright lights of Broadway and later in front of TV cameras.

Gotta dance!  – Unknown

Her Broadway début was in Sleepy Hollow when she was just 15 years old!  Even though the show fizzled after 12 performances, McCarty received a Theatre World Award for her role as Eva.  She continued to sing and dance her way into our hearts as Maisie Doll in the Irving Berlin hit, Miss Liberty in 1949.

I’m dancing as fast as I can.  – Unknown

She created the role of sassy Mama Morton in the Broadway stage version of Chicago.

In Bless You All she performed with legendary stars Pearl Bailey and Gene Barry, which firmly established her as a supporting actress.  And she appeared on an occasional television show…

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By the mid 1950’s, she was more active in film than on the Broadway stage.  Movies such as The French Line, Pillow Talk, Babes in Toyland, My Six Loves and All That Jazz made her a familiar name and face to movie goers everywhere!

Brake a leg!  – Unknown

In 1977 she played Bertha Gardner in the popular daytime drama, All My Children.  And my favorite nurse, Clara “Starch” Willoughby, R.N. emerged in the television show Trapper John, M.D. with Parnell Roberts.

On April 30, 1980 at just 57 years old, Mary McCarty passed away after a heart attack.  She lived her life to the fullest, this Kansas girl.  May she rest in peace.

All you need are toe shoes, a tutu and a willing heart.  – Unknown

Wouldn’t it be a great tribute to watch one of her performances today?  I have a few of these wonderful movies on DVD.  It might take all day to watch all of them – I may not get anything else done.  Ah…  that’d be a real shame, that would.  LOL!!!

Bravo!!!  Encore!!!  – Unknown

She put more life into her life in 57 short years than many of us do with more time on earth.  Today we are reminded to appreciate each and every day.  Happy Birthday, Mary!  🙂

BIRTHDAY #54

TL BIRTHDAY #54

I enjoy and am enjoying the good things that come along with [aging]… Nobody can buy experience.  Nobody can buy wisdom.  Nobody can buy a shared history with others that you get by being relevant and engaged year upon year upon year.  – Rob Lowe

Have you ever seen a cake with 54 candles on it?  I know, me neither.  So, there is a positive to not eating cake, huh?

I’m so thankful to God for another year of life.  I received this from a friend:

Renew My Strength

Heavenly Father,

Please bless Linda, for today is her birthday. Dear Lord, please protect and guide Linda as she continues along the path you’ve chosen for her. Give her the courage to follow in your light, and feel your love wherever she goes. Make her strong and give her the strength to make good decisions in the coming year. Keep her free from illness and sadness, for she is a truly good person who deserves happiness and success in all aspects of life. We know that life is like a book. With each new chapter, we learn and grow towards what you would have us be. Bless Linda now on this day, and in the future.

In your name we pray,

Amen.

Isn’t that sweet?  My friends mean so much to me, and kindness like that is a real treasure and uplifts my spirit!

On this day I also want to wish some other (more famous) people a very happy birthday!

  • Emmylou Harris
  • Adam Rodriguez
  • Michael Fassbender
  • Quavo Marshall
  • Bethany Joy Lenz
  • Traci Braxton
  • Drew Van Acker
  • Christopher Meloni
  • Clark Gregg
  • Kapil Sharma
  • David Ferrer
  • Roselyn Sanchez
  • Linda Hunt
  • Jesse Carmichael
  • Adam Shulman
  • Sia Barbi
  • Deon Richmond
  • Leon Russell
  • Leyla Milani
  • Lindy Booth
  • Amy Castle
  • Samu Haber
  • Paquita la del Barrio
  • Pedro Pascal
  • Lee De Wyre
  • Clare Thomas
  • Simon Farmaby

I’m in good company!  And here are a few who were born on April 2nd but have passed on:

  • Marvin Gaye
  • Hans Christian Andersen
  • Buddy Ebsen
  • Alec Guinness
  • Charlemagne
  • Jack Webb

I’m sure you have done this on your birthday – looked up all the famous people who share your special day.  It’s fun to think about all the talented folks you share a birthday with.  I wonder if I could have been famous?  Oh well…  I’m sure that ship has sailed – but it might have been nice.

This year I’d like to see the movie “American Sniper”.  It’s time for America to see a real hero.

This picture [American Sniper] was interesting because I’m seeing it from the point of a person who was sort of an American hero…  His family and his beliefs were very strong…  You have to embrace his philosophy if you’re going to tell a story about him.  – Clint Eastwood

Look what I had waiting for me on facebook today…  Lucinda spoils me – she really does.  This poem made me cry – it did.

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From Lucinda… Awe!

And Lucinda, I will now give you another photo to add to your collection – LOL!  This is my official RED HAT photo.  No, I’m not a member of the Red Hat Society, but I sure do embrace the notion that as one ages, one must not be overly concerned about what colors do and do not go together, nor how many feathers one wears in one’s hat.  Bring on the hats, the feathers, the purple and red together.  I will age with grace, but I will age with an attitude that says RULES???  WHAT RULES???

I love this post on one of my favorite blogs – http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/2015/04/easter-parade-2015.html

Wouldn’t you love to join these wonderful women???  I sure would!

Ready for the Red Hat Society!
Ready for the Red Hat Society!

I must share a story about this photo.  I found this red hat (I know it looks orange in the photo but it really is red) at the antique store.  I saw it as a photo-op.  I didn’t want to actually buy the hat, so I casually went into the booth and tried to hide amongst some other items so I would not be seen taking the photo.

I was almost home free…  I got my camera out and was seconds away from pushing the button when I happened to glance just outside the booth and across the store – at the cutest little lady.  She must have been kicking 80.  I wondered if she was going to approve or disapprove of my actions – but I knew she was cool when those two little thumbs of hers turned upward and she gave me the biggest grin I’ve ever seen!  I wish I had a photo of that – because it was priceless!

Opinions are like birthdays; everybody has one, and I know yours only because of facebook.  @RANDILAWSON

Thank you all for the kind wishes and encouragement.  I’m thankful to God for another year of life!  And yes, I may have a small slice of birthday cake today – but it won’t be the cake that had 54 candles on it – lol!!!  🙂

 

 

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

TL ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY (5)

 

8-11 NOT JUST ANOTHER DAY

He is incredible but he’s not the green hulk – he is Hulk Hogan, the longest reigning heavyweight champion of all time with the World Wrestling Federation.  Today is his birthday and it’s time to celebrate!

Hogan came to fame in the 1980’s in the WWF.  He set many records through the 1980’s and 1990’s and was the first man to win 2 consecutive royal rumbles.  He’s also been featured in television and film.  He even has his own reality show called “Hogan Knows Best”.

” Thunder in Paradise” is a film Hulk Hogan appeared in.  Let’s face it – there’s just never a dull moment when he’s around.

There comes a moment in life when we look around and see things falling apart and wonder if there is more to life than what we are in ourselves.  Sometimes we have to hit rock bottom before we take time to look up.  It’s painful while we’re going through it, but so rewarding when we stop struggling, look up through the tears and cry out to the God of the universe for help.  When we humble ourselves before God, healing – permanent healing – ultimately follows.  God is so faithful to us.  He is there for all who call on Him.

I now realize I had to go through all this stuff to be who I am today, to make me who I am today.  And then I realized all that stuff – the peace, love, the joy, that still, small voice, the energy, that God presence – is part of who I’m meant to be.  – Hulk Hogan

Life can seem to crumble for all of us – celebrities or ordinary folk like me.  The question is:  Who will you lean on for help when it happens.  God loves us so much and He wants to be the One you rely on completely when life falls apart.

We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties.   – Oswald Chambers

Never give up on life no matter what happens.  Reach out to Jesus because He loves and cares for you.  Happy Birthday, Hulk Hogan!  God bless you and keep on keeping on – and believing that God has your life in His hand!  ❤