I’m going to take some time to do some spring cleaning and to set my house in order….hope to see you after Easter!
I am still gleaning so much from my church’s ladies bible study we’ve been doing based on Andrew Murray’s booklet “Humility.” I think the other ladies would agree that this little booklet packs a might punch! As in a punch in the gut, I should say. Conviction abounds on every turn of the page as I go through it. Humility just seems to be one of those virtues that gets pushed to the side, and as Christians (yes, even as Christians!) we value other virtues much more, which, frankly is pathetic. I’ve been meditating on this little paragraph from the book:
First, is the fact that there may be the enthusiastic and active practice of Christianity while humility is still sadly lacking. The disciples had a fervent attachment to Jesus. They had forsaken all to follow Him. The Father had revealed to them that He (Jesus) was the Christ of God. They believed in Him, they loved Him, and they obeyed His commandments. When others fell away, they remained faithful to Him. They were ready to die with Him. But deeper than all of this devotion was the existence of an inner power of sin and selfishness. This power had to be dealt with before they could be witnesses of the power of Jesus to save. It is so with all of us. We may find professors and ministers, evangelists and Christian workers, missionaries and teachers, in whom the gifts of the Spirit are many and manifest, and who are the channels of blessing to multitudes, but of whom, when tested, or close interpersonal relationships reveal their true characters, it is only too evident that the grace of humility, as an abiding characteristic, is rarely to be seen. All of this tends to confirm the reality that humility is one of the chief and highest virtures, one of the most difficult to attain, and one to which our first and greatest efforts ought to be directed. Humility is a virtue that only comes in power when the fullness of the Spirity makes us partakers of the indwelling Christ and He lives within us.
Andrew Murray goes on to say that we can only become humble by the indwelling of Christ and God’s Holy Spirit…it’s not something we can do on our own, or by our own will. If we are too full of ourselves, we can’t be filled with the Spirit, and we can’t be humble. We must be empty vessels…like Christ, who totally emptied Himself, and allowed Himself to be humble so that the Father could fill Him up with His Spirit, and with power, to do only what God’s son could do. Can any of us be as humble as Christ was? I think not. I have not yet met a man or woman who can claim that! But we can pray for that same spiritual power that Christ had, and for God to do a work in us that only He can do.
The kids and I played hooky from school the other day to take a field trip to see the Cherry Blossoms. My husband dropped us off at the station and I overcame my fear of taking the Metrorail with all the children by myself! The weather was nice and warm and I believe the Cherry Blossoms were on the front end of their peak. They were so fluffy, they really resembled popcorn!
Mondays: Bean Burritos and Salad
Tuesdays: BBQ Chicken, Cole Slaw, Baked Beans
Wednesdays: Chinese Stir Fry, Mei Fun Noodles
Thursdays: Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables
Friday: Nachos and Salad
Saturdays: Chicken Caesar Salad, 5 Minute Artisan bread
Sundays: Sub sandwiches, Chips
Mei Fun Noodles are otherwise known as “rice stick noodles.” You can find them in an Asian Grocery Store, and sometimes you can find them in the Asian section of a regular grocery store. I’ve also seen them called “rice stick vermicelli.” They make a good complement to stir fry dishes and are a nice change from plain rice. I season the noodles with a little bit of stir fry sauce, soy sauce, chicken bouillon powder, and finally sesame oil.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
He will not always strive with us,
Nor will He keep His anger forever.
He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor punished us according to our iniquities.
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we are dust.
As for man, his days are like grass;
As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.
For the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
And its place remembers it no more.
But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting
On those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children’s children,
To such as keep His covenant,
And to those who remember His commandments to do them.
The Lord has established His throne in heaven,
And His kingdom rules over all.
I’m a busy mom. I homeschool 5 kids, they do sports, and music lessons. I’ve been feeling a bit squeezed for time. Sometimes I feel like I can barely finish one task before it’s time to move on to the next…with no time in between to take a break. The result of that is the nagging feeling. The one that screams “there is so much to be done. You have soooo much to do today. You’ll never get it all done!” I fight such defeating thoughts with the truth.
A few years ago I picked up Nancy Leigh DeMoss’s book Lies Women Believe and the Truth That Sets Them Free. There is a chapter in the book where she discusses “lies women believe about priorities.” She states:
“By the way, there is another, related lie that women in our generation have bought into. In a sense, it is the opposite of the lie that we don’t have enough time to do everything we’re ‘supposed’ to do. It is the lie that ‘I can do it all’—that ‘I should be able to be an ideal wife and mother, keep my house clean and organized, prepare healthy meals for my family, be active in my kids’ school and my church and community, stay physically fit, keep up on current events, and have a full-time job outside my home.’
Women who subconsciously believe they are supposed to be able to juggle all these roles are likely to end up exhausted and overwhelmed by all the demands on their time.
The Truth is, no woman can wear all those hats effectively. Sooner or later, something (or someone) is going to suffer.
Frustration is the by-product of attempting to fulfill responsibilities God does not intend for us to carry. Freedom, joy, and fruitfulness come from seeking to determine God’s priorities for each season of life, and then setting out to fulfill those priorities, in the power of His Spirit, realizing that He has provided the necessary time and ability to do everything that He has called us to do.”
I can determine what I am called to do by reading God’s word. According to my season and station in life as a wife and mother I believe that I do have time to:
- Pray, study, and read God’s word
- Love my husband and my children
- Be busy at home
- Be discrete, chaste, and modest
- Exhibit a gentle and quiet spirit
These things come before all else. I may have to remove some non-essential things in order to make room for the more important things. I may have to delegate more responsiblities to my children. I trust that the rest of my “to-do” list will get done sooner, or maybe much later. What do you have time for?
I didn’t change much from the last menu. We’ll eat this for two weeks:
Mondays: Bean burritos, salad (variations of this recipe)
Tuesdays: Sub Sandwiches, (with homemade kaiser roll recipe, see below) chips
Wednesdays: Asian broccoli and carrot stir fry, mei fun noodles
Thursdays: Broccoli and Cheddar Soup, salad, bread
Fridays: Nachos, salad
Saturdays: Spaghetti, salad, bread
Sundays: Roast chicken (crock-pot), veggies, leftovers
I found a great kaiser roll recipe a few years ago….when I have the time I make it and use it for sandwiches. It’s not as fast as my beloved 5 minute artisan bread, but it has that great kaiser roll texture because of the added oil and kneading. I skip the step where you add the egg white wash. You can make them into long submarine rolls and add the sesame seeds on top if you prefer!
- 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
- 2 cups warm water (110° to 115°), divided
- 4 tablespoons sugar, divided
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 egg white
- 2 teaspoons cold water
- Poppy and/or sesame seeds
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water. Add 1 tablespoon sugar; let stand for 5 minutes. Add the oil, salt, remaining warm water and sugar and 4 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
- Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
- Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into 16 pieces. Shape each into a ball. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
- Beat egg white and cold water; brush over rolls. Sprinkle with poppy and/or sesame seeds. With scissors, cut a 1/4-in.-deep cross on tops of rolls.
- Bake at 400° for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 16 rolls.
Recipe from Taste of Home
Today you are 12! I can hardly believe that you are growing up so fast. 12 years ago you were born to your father and me and our lives changed forever! You have been a joy to us since the day you were born. Our hearts desire that you will continue to grow in your walk with the Lord and in serving Him. We enjoy listening to you play the guitar, and we especially like your corny jokes and occasional sarcasm. We love to talk about politics with you and we believe that one day you might make it a career! Thank you for helping us figure out today’s technology (especially problems with our computer). We love to watch you do your crazy dances and listen to your freestyle hip-hop with your younger brother. We love you so much, may God bless you on this day and always!!!
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these things do, and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9