Sunday, May 30, 2010

Physical Aspect of Healing and Deliverance

I thought I would go through many of the symptoms that I experienced with Adrenal Exhaustion and give you an update.
Depression: GONE COMPLETELY! Including any symptoms that go along with depression. I do not remember a time in my life that I have been so full of joy. I wake up smiling. I smiled through some migraines this past week. I smile at my dear husband every time I see him! So, the depression is gone!
Hypoglycemia: Gone! I used to have to eat every 2-3 hours or else I would be very shaky, weak and dizzy. Not anymore. I eat when I am hungry, sometimes even long after I am hungry with no ill-effects!
Extreme Exhaustion: Gone! I would slowly move from bedroom to living room couch to bathroom and back to bed again. I, on good days, good 'help' in the kitchen, doing a little prep work but then having to go lie down again. I was exhausted by 10:00 in the morning and would definitely need a long nap everyday. Not anymore! I do still lie down if I get a little tired, but it is for about a half an hour.
I could do very little around the house. I did not do laundry, make my own bed, cook, clean, brush the girls hair. When I say I did very little, I am not kidding! For the past several weeks the children have either been with my mom or my dear friend about three days a week. I now have energy and just buzz around the house almost like normal. I still feel a little weakness every once in a while and suspect I am not quite running at full steam, but definitely at 80-90%!
Insomnia: I have slept horribly for years. I am now sleeping 5 hour blocks and feeling refreshed in the morning.
Unable to handle noise/chaos: This is a tough one, especially if you have a very large family. I used to not be able to handle the children talking to me, or the vacuum ( I would go hide in my room), water running, fans blowing. Just about any noise made me feel like I was going crazy and I had to get away from it. I can now listen to the children (when I am not being selfish ;-) I was even able to handle the "mommy, watch me" by the pool the other day. I think there was about 30 "mommy, watch me's" within five minutes and I was fine!!
Brain Fog: I can think again!!! I am still ditsy, say my two older sons, with respect. They say I keep life fun and interesting. I can plan our menu. I can think about school or a grocery list.
Blood Pressure/Pulse: During this whole ordeal my blood pressure ran about 90/45 and my pulse was around 48. My BP is now my normal 110/60 and my pulse is somewhere between 60-70. Both totally normal!! (low blood pressure and pulse are an indication of how slow my body was functioning, also an indication of a low functioning thyroid)
No more anxiety, irritability (within reason ;-), panic attacks, fear, sensitivity to cold, hair loss. There are more, I am sure, these are just the most obvious to me right now.
Loss of libido: This has been a very dramatic change! Brian is thrilled ;-) We call me 'Stella' now, because this girl has got her groove back!! (blush)
The most amazing thing to me is that I feel like ME! again. Actually, I'm not even sure if I am me again because I have not been me for so long, I forgot who "ME" was! Whoever I am, I LIKE her!
You remember my post Snapshots of Adrenal Fatigue, right? Go back and read that and compare it to this post! God has healed and delivered me!!
If you are struggling with Adrenal Fatigue/Exhaustion, there is hope! It is an illness with a spiritual roots that can be dealt with and you too can find healing and deliverance! Please check out the book, A More Excellent Way and/or the ministry Be In Health. God used these two things, this book and ministry to bring truth and revelation to me. I do not put my hope in the book or ministry, they were just tools that the Lord used. I pray you find the answers you are looking for. If you know of anyone struggling with their health, please refer them to this post.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Perfect Day

Today was just about the most perfect day I have had in a long time! Each day since the Lord healed and delivered me has been so awesome and fun. Today it was in the 80s and sunny. The pool was opened this week and we love to hang out by the pool together. When I got sick last summer our pool days were almost non-existent.
Before we enjoyed the pool, we worked hard in the garden. We weeded, planted and watered. I planted my patio pots. The above is a picture of our cabbage garden. Doesn't it look awesome?

These are my new favorite color mini-petunias. They are so pretty and cheery. Different from the standard colors.

Big brother, Joshua, age 18 and his little buddy Elijah, age 2. They are so close. This is the same brother who carries him on his back while doing kitchen chores. I love having a big family and I so enjoy the dynamics in all the different relationships.

I am so thankful for what the Lord has done in me. I praise HIM and glorify HIM! It is amazing to me that just a few weeks ago I was pretty much in bed most of the day with the children needing to be cared for by others. I have been mothering, cooking, cleaning, organizing, gardening, shopping, playing, dancing, SMILING, wife-ing ;-) I even got to hang laundry on the line today. Oh, and I didn't even take a nap today, something I have needed to do for about 10 years! God is so amazingly faithful. I still can't help but want to shout and sing. Woe be it to the person that asks how I am doing these days. They do not know what they are in for with my answer! I tend to bubble over all over them with praises to our Father.
Praise Him with me, won't you?

O SING to the Lord a new song, for He has done marvelous things . . .
(Ps. 98:1)

Winner of Book Give Away!

Oh, I love having a drawing and giving things away. But, I also hate not being able to give one to everyone!!!
I wish I could give away ten books! I am going to give away two books though.
The winners are:
Please email me with your addresses so I can get them out to you!!
Thank you to all who entered. I am praying for you and I cannot recommend the book enough. Here, once again, is the link from Amazon. It is the best deal at $16.49! I think the book sells for $24 on the Be In Health website.

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul keeps well and prospers. ( 3 John 2)

Friday, May 28, 2010

An Encouraging Word

Hi Ladies,

So many of you are hurting and struggling and I wanted to share my heart with you through a video. I wanted you to see with your eyes what the Lord has done and give you a virtual hug. I hope you are encouraged! I love you!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mourning Into Dancing!

While it is true that the Lord used a book and a ministry to speak to my heart, let us not forget that it is the Truth that sets us free (John 8:32) And it is because of His great mercy and love that He has delivered me!

Jesus said:

The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the good news (the Gospel) to the poor; He has sent Me to announce release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed [who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity], To proclaim the accepted and acceptable year of the Lord [the day when salvation and the free favors of God profusely abound. (Luke 4:18-19)

It is our Lord, ladies!! Jesus has set me free! He has healed me!
I have always tried to cling to these verses:

For His anger is but for a moment,
but His favor is for a lifetime or in His favor is life.
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning
You have turned my mourning into dancing for me;
You have put off my sackcloth and girded me with gladness,

(The children and I literally dancing for joy yesterday morning!)

To the end that my tongue and my heart and everything glorious within me may sing praise to You and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever.

(Ps. 30)

I don’t know if I have ever LIVED them to the degree that I am living them now! You are just going to have to deal with me gushing about my God for awhile.

Oh, to the end that my tongue and my heart and everything glorious within me may sing praise to YOU! and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever!!

Dear sisters, don’t give up. Don’t stop believing Him, He will come and save you. Do not faint, He will come! If you are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not! Behold your God will come with vengeance; with the recompense of God He will come and save you. (Is. 30:4)

He absolutely is no respecter of persons, what He has done for me, He will do for you! You too will be the ransomed of the Lord and shall come to Zion with singing, and everlasting joy shall be upon your heads; you shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away! (Is. 35:10)

Hold fast to Him, and when you can’t hold on any longer, know that He is holding you and that there are saints all around believing and praying for you. And even our High Priest is interceding for you. He will come!! I have, just now prayed for your deliverance! He loves you, and He is so faithful. Continue to trust and wait.

Don't forget about my Give Away of the book A More Excellent Way

Monday, May 24, 2010

A More Excellent Way Book Review & Give Away!

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Because you have rejected knowledge,
I also will reject you from being priest for Me;
Because you have forgotten the law of your God,
I also will forget your children.
(Hosea 4:6)

Therefore my people have gone into captivity,
Because they have no knowledge;
Their honorable men are famished,
And their multitude dried up with thirst

(Isaiah 5:13)

I am probably not the most biased person to give a review of this book. ;-) God used it in a huge way to bring deliverance and healing to my life. I have read many books on healing over the years, but none quite like this one. This book is full of knowledge, spiritual and medical.

The whole premise behind the book is the fact that there are spiritual roots behind nearly 80 percent of all diseases. I did not do much reading before I was convicted and convinced of this truth.

The book is full of scripture. I liked that even when the author was referring to a scripture, the actual scripture was then put in print for you to read.

I must say, though, that this book is actually a compilation of many of Pastor Henry Wright's teachings. Therefore, it does not 'flow' like a well written book. This did not bother me, though I do like nice tidy books. It seemed each time I picked it up it ministered to me right where I was at. I would guess that was in part due to the wonderful amount of scripture throughout. It really did feel like I was reading many good sermons as I read through the book.

There is a huge section on many diseases that are rooted in fear, stress and anxiety. The book would list a certain disease and then explain how fear, stress and anxiety plays a role in that disease.

There is also another section that discusses specific diseases. Diseases covered range from Depression to Cancer to Heart Disease to Hypothyroidism and many, many others.

Pastor Henry Wright makes it clear that he is NOT saying that ALL diseases have spiritual roots. He also makes clear the point that his vision is not just healing but disease prevention.

The medical knowledge and research from this ministry is very thorough, it seems.

I personally found the information in the book to be very valuable and practical in nature. I really like the practical section on the 8 R's to Freedom. Recognize (the sin), Responsibility (take responsibility for your part), Repent, Renounce, Remove it, Resist, Rejoice, and Restore (others). It is in no way a 'formula' for healing! Just a very practical way to walk out our lives when we are convicted of sin. I especially liked being able to teach this to the children.

There is a section entitled Spiritual Blocks to Healing near the end of the book. There are 33 blocks listed in the book that all have scriptural foundations. These could stand alone as things to examine your heart about, whether you are sick or not!

The last section is 120 pages of testimonies from real people who were healed or delivered in some way. I was so encouraged as I read through this. It is so awesome to read stories of people's lives who have been touched by God.

There are so many sections of this book that are just plain old awesome truth every Christian should know about. I was surprise by how much I had not known or really thought of that way while I was reading the book. Even if you are not sick and nobody you love is, (what are the chances of that ;-) I really do think this book is a keeper. You might not have the same passion to read it as someone who is really struggling with their health right now, but it is very good!

I would like to give a copy of this book away to one of you ladies. Leave me a comment telling me that you would like to be entered in the drawing. Anyone can enter, but I would really like to give it someone who is struggling with health issues or has a loved one who is. You understand right? If it is something you have a mild interest in and can afford, maybe save the opportunity for someone less fortunate. ;-) I will draw a winner on Friday, May 28, 2010.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Mighty One in Your Midst!

Sing, O Daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice, be in high spirits and glory with all your heart, O Daughter of Jerusalem [in that day].

For then it will be that the Lord has taken away the judgments against you; He has cast out your enemy. The King of Israel, even the Lord Himself, is in the midst of you; and after He has come to you, you shall not experience or fear evil any more.

In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear not, O Zion. Let not your hands sink down or be slow and listless.

The Lord your God is in the midst of you, a Mighty One, a Savior [Who saves]! He will rejoice over you with joy; He will rest [in silent satisfaction] and in His love He will be silent and make no mention [of past sins, or even recall them]; He will exult over you with singing.

I will gather those belonging to you [those Israelites in captivity] who yearn and grieve for the solemn assembly [and the festivals], on whom [their exile and inability to attend services at Jerusalem have brought derision and] the reproach of it is a burden.

Behold, at that time I will deal with all those who afflict you; I will save the limping ones and gather the outcasts and will make them a praise and a name in every land of their shame.

At that time I will bring you in; yes, at that time I will gather you, for I will make you a name and a praise among all the nations of the earth when I reverse your captivity before your eyes, says the Lord.
(Zephaniah 3:14-20)

(The current scripture knocking my socks off! ;-)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Deliverance Has Come

Where do I start? These past several weeks have been amazingly wonderful. Very intense and painful, at times, but so wonderful. I have more hope than I have had in a very long time and I know the Lord has truly begun a deep work of healing and sanctification in my life. Of course, He has been doing it all along, I am just now being able to see some fruit of it.

As you know I have been very sick for about ten months now. We have been seeking God while pursuing natural medicine. All the while I have felt that what was going on physically was a spiritual issue and when the Lord showed me just what He wanted for me I would be well. I had no idea how 'spot on' I was. I began to feel like taking all the supplements and going to all the appointments were out of obedience to Brian and possibly for my doctor's sake. (we have a strong relationship with my doctor who is a believer) I began to realize that my doctor, my diet, nothing I did in the natural was going to bring about healing. That it was a spiritual issue.

Don't get me wrong, I hoped something would bring the healing! I wanted to put my hope into this diet or that diet. Maybe a cleanse, maybe a fast. Maybe going all raw for a season. (though I know this went against what I knew about food and God, I was desperate and wanted wellness so bad!) Maybe if I found the right supplements or the right combination. I knew in my heart all these things wouldn't bring healing, yet I pursued them, hoping I was wrong and just missing something.

The Lord had two people email a book suggestion that I poo-pooed. The first time (I can't remember who you are, if you were the one, please email me so I can give you a giant kiss!) I saw the title and description of the book, I thought, 'great, another book on healing. Like I don't already have shelves of books on healing. No thanks, been there, done that. I know, not all that teachable ;-)

The second time I also blew it off because I saw in the reviews that the book taught that disease had spiritual roots and that sin could be the cause of my disease. Well HELLO, I beat myself up enough, thank you very much. The last thing I need is someone telling me to work harder to overcome my sin so I will be well! Boy, was I wrong!

That second time, though, I couldn't leave it alone. I kept going to the website and nosing around. I prayed that if God wanted me to have it that I would be open to it, otherwise to just take it out of my mind. Well, within about one days time, I ordered it!

When it came I could not put it down. I opened it right up to find where it talked about what was wrong with me and much to my surprise, this book had nailed me to a tee!!!! I have learned a lot about the Endocrine system and the hypothalamus gland so I understood immediately what it was saying. It all clicked and began to pull all the pieces of the puzzle together.

I decided to go to the beginning of the book and read it from cover to cover. I am not exaggerating when I say that my jaw was literally dropped open pretty much the whole time I was reading it. I kept telling Brian that every puzzle piece of my life that is out there floating around is being put together. I was shocked. So much of my life, the way I thought, the things I have been taught. Somebody had been reading my mail, that I was sure of. (wink)

The ministry behind the book is called Be In Health and they offer a program at their campus in Georgia. It is a week long program called For My Life. We began to try to arrange a trip down there immediately. I knew that I knew this was from my Father and I wanted it all. Well, we just did not have a peace about the arrangements with the children. We decided to take the online version of the program called For My Life Online. This way we could do it with the children instead of going down to GA for a week and then trying to teach them all we had learned.

The online program is about 32 hours of teaching and we quickly rearranged our whole life to fit these teachings in. We all are forever changed. I cannot believe the wholeness and healing that this teaching has brought to our family. In my mind, I thought it was just about me and me getting healed, physically. Boy, was I wrong! The verse that keeps coming to my mind as I sit here with my jaw still dropped open is:

Now to Him Who, by the action of His power that is at work within us, is able to carry out His purpose and do superabundantly, far over and above all that we dare ask or think infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams. (Eph. 3:20)

I am really struggling right now, because I so want to be able to pour everything I have learned into everyone I love, including you ladies!! I know this is a work of God and not for everybody right now, but you know when you get a real taste of Truth and freedom you just want to give to everyone?? Remember when you first got saved and you wanted to run out and tell everyone and get them saved too? That is how it feels! I feel totally inadequate to put to words all we have learned (nor do I think I have to, I just want to ;-) and just what this has done for our family, for us individually, for our marriage, for our future generations! I just feel like I could bust! I really think this type of teaching should be considered 'Christianity 101' and feel every family could and would benefit from it. We are considering making sure the future spouses of our children sit through this teaching before they get married, it is that big. (of course, we will let the Lord lead that, just telling you how huge this is to us)

One more thing, it is not like we have never had this type of teaching before. I think we have sat under or been taught just about every type of teaching within Christianity. I mean from the 'name it and claim it' prosperity message all the way over to a very passive 'sovereignty of God' type teaching. ( I am not knocking or judging any of these lines of thinking, I am just saying, we've been around) It could just be where we are in life and what the Lord is doing, but I really don't think I have ever felt like so much teaching just plain old made sense and has made the Word of God come more alive in my heart more than ever! We are very much 'Word of God' type people. We love the Word! We were thrilled to hear so much Truth taught. Yes, no man, no church is perfect and that is where we are responsible to be like the Bereans and also to study and be able to rightly discern the truth.
I have hopes and plans of future posts. I would like to do a post on who, IMHO, I think would benefit from these teachings. Trust me, you don't have to be 'sick' with a physical illness to be changed forever by these teachings!

I would like to do a book review of A More Excellent Way.
I would like to share from some of the teachings and how the spoke to my heart and brought deliverance and freedom.

Maybe a post on a little more of my testimony, physically. Maybe even have some of the children share their hearts and even Brian, if he would be so kind. (batting eyelashes)

Thank you ALL who have been praying and a part of this journey. It's not over yet, but the Lord has brought such deliverance!!

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!
Stay Tuned!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Shouts - Squeals - Jumping - Dancing!!

I simply could not decide what picture to put up that best described what I am feeling today!!

I chose this one because I feel like shouting from the rooftops just how awesome our God is!!!
Did I hurt your ears?

This one. I feel like a thirsty little girl who has just taken a huge drink of refreshment!!
We finished our online seminar this morning and it was awesome! I have so much to share, I don't even know where to start. I have been praying about when and what and the Lord is having me go slow and orderly. You know me, I just want to spill it all out there!!!!
I do want to share that I have been set free from so much and that for the past two mornings I have awakened with a smile on my face before I even open my eyes! Do you know how big this is!! I have hope and joy flooding my heart and bubbling out! I feel like ME! I just wanted to thank you all for praying for us. (don't stop if the Lord leads ;-) We are all doing so great and much healing and restoring has and is happening. I have tried to journal it all, but it is way, way too much. I will trust the Lord with what and how I share.
Thank you!!! Have a great day!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Mama Mia! This Was Favoloso!

I wish I had taken pictures while I was preparing and before serving, but I forgot! And, I didn't know how 'favoloso' it was going to be. Being half Italian I love Italian food!
I made Braciole (pronounced Brajole) It is a pounded piece of beef, filled and then rolled and slow cooked with your favorite tomato sauce. It was so easy. When we ordered our grass-fed beef from a wonderful local farm, Maple Valley Farms, I made sure to have the butcher tenderize my round steak. I knew this would be perfect for this recipe!
Here is what I did. There are a ton of variations out there, but I found this way to be so easy and so delizioso! ( I really don't know Italian, I just used google! ;-)
pounded/tenderized round steak
grated Parmesan or Romano cheese (use the good stuff)
chopped parsley
salt and pepper
favorite tomato sauce ( I used my homemade Mama Michello's Sauce)
I simply layed out the beef sprinkled generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Sprinkled, generously again, with the grated cheese and parsley. Roll up and secure with toothpicks. The pieces were not all the same size so I just rolled it anyway I could, it didn't matter, it turned out great.
I then browned the rolls in oil until well browned. (key to great flavor) I used a very large enamel cast iron dutch oven and browned them in batches. You don't want to crowd the pan as you will more steam than brown the meat. I put them all in the pan, poured my sauce over them and covered. I baked it around 350 for several hours. It smelled favoloso!
I made some 5 minute bread and our 'traditional' Italian salad and we had a feast!
Let me know if you try it or have any questions. It was so easy and definitely had that WOW factor. I mean, come on, Braciole, steaming hot crusty bread and a salad?! Ask me if I felt like the MAMA!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I'm Over Here Today . . .

Good Morning Ladies, thought I would let you know that I have a post on marriage over At The Well today. Head on over and find out about one of our husband's vital needs. In my humble opinion, of course ;-)

At the Well Blog Button

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bible Study Help for the 21st Century

I love to study God's Word. For several years now, I have used these books to study the Greek and Hebrew meanings to words in scripture. I love them, except for their size. You occasionally would find me in my quiet time chair with my bible, and one or two of these books in in my lap. I would go back and forth from the scripture to the dictionary and back to scripture.

Brian discovered this Interlinear Scripture Analyzer for your computer. I was resistant at first because I love my books and I am a little resistant to change. I know, I know, I'm the only one who is ;-) If I am being honest, I was a bit prideful thinking that somehow my way was more scholarly. You know, somehow books made ME smarter. I have repented. ;-)

I now LOVE this software. It is free and it is so easy to use. Obviously this would not work so well if I didn't have a laptop that I can have at my fingertips. I haven't even begun to tap into all that it must do. To be honest, I don't know what else it is used for. I just look up the verse I want to study and right there, with just a few clicks of the mouse I can find the Strong's number and the definition of the word. Either Greek for the New Testament or Hebrew for the Old Testament. I love it.
You can download it for FREE! Just click the link and download the main ISA, and get started! You may also add the Concordant Literal Version and the Young's literal translation. Let me know what you think or what you use!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Favorite Cabbage Salad (video)

This is our Favorite Cabbage Salad. I had a blast making the video with the children. It is so easy and so yummy. It makes a big batch and will last in the fridge for several days, if you can keep it for that long. I am always on the hunt for easy, go-to raw veggie recipes. This one fits the bill! Below the video you will find the typed recipe. Enjoy!

P.S. I let the video run a few extra seconds so you could see those littles continue to gobble it up. They love it. Also, when I was reviewing the video after shooting it, my little Elijah crawled up and grabbed a fork and began shoveling it in. You would think I didn't feed these children!

Favorite Cabbage Salad

2 heads shredded cabbage, red or green or both

3 apples, shredded

Poppy Seeds

Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

(a glug of maple syrup) I did not add this in on the video, but it does help to round out the flavor.

Soaked and dried sunflower seeds for serving.

Super Easy!

I apologize to all you measurers out there. ;-)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

What a Day!

My sweet children and husband have made today such a special day. I did tell them that they might have amped it up a little, because they take care of me this well everyday!! (wink)
I was served pancakes and eggs, at my request, for breakfast.
Brian and I had a tenderloin steak for lunch, smothered in sauteed onions and cheese.
And for dinner, we always have roast chicken, but today they made me, Roast Chicken with Sun dried Tomatoes and Goat Cheese. I will have to post the recipe, it is divine!
We laughed, we cried (what's new ;-) I opened homemade cards and read the words, 'you are the best mom I ever had', only twice this year. (grin) Lilacs everywhere and so many hugs I am exhausted.
I am so blessed. What sweet rewards for being a mama!

Of course we took photos. I adore this man!

My sweet little girly girls!

My extremely handsome and STRONG manly men!

And, of course, the whole lot of them.

What an honor to have given birth to each and every one of these creatures! Thank you, Father.

(We have not mastered the art of at least one photo with everyone looking the same direction, eyes open, and smiling. But we have fun trying!)

One last thing, today the 200th follower signed up to follow She Looketh Well. What a privilege and a blessing to be able to share my heart with other women. I have attempted to welcome each and every follower, but have fallen woefully short! Forgive me? I appreciate you all and pray for each one of you. Please, always feel free to email me privately with questions, suggestions or prayer requests. Grace and Peace to you all!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Goals for Motherhood

Happy Mother's Day!!
I was inspired by Ann's post, A Ten Point Manifest For Joyful Mothering, so I thought I would re-post my Goals for Motherhood.
Praying for all of you dear Mama's to have a wonderfully blessed Mother's Day. Let's remember that it is not how much we are honored on Mother's Day (a worldly holiday), but how honored we are to be Mamas!!
Goals for Motherhood

1. Lay down my life and my plans to serve the Lord and my family.
If anyone desires to be My disciple, let him deny himself (disregard, lose sight of, and forget himself and his own interests and take up his cross. (Mt. 16:24)

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brother. (1 John 3:16)

2. Only kind and gentle words and tone.
She opens her mouth in skillful and godly Wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness. (Pr. 31:26)

She must be kindly to everyone and mild-tempered; she must be a skilled teacher, patient and forbearing and willing to suffer wrong. She must correct her opponents with courtesy and gentleness... (2 Tim 2:24, 25)

3. Be compassionate and merciful—what they are feeling is BIG to them.
Bear one another’s burdens and in this way fulfill and observe the law of Christ.
(Gal. 6:2)

Execute true judgment and show mercy and kindness and tender compassion, every man to his brother. (Zech. 7:9)

4. Get up and go to them—no parenting from the couch—be consistent and prompt.

5. Create a happy atmosphere.

6. Light up and Smile all the time.

7. Look at them—Listen to them—Touch them

8. Be joyful and happy!
Serve the Lord with gladness! (Ps. 100:2)

Be happy and rejoice and be glad-hearted continually (always) (1Thes. 5:16)

9. Encourage and Praise every day, all day!
Encourage one another and edify, strengthen and build up on another. (2 Thes. 5:11)

And let us consider and give attentive, continuous care to watching over on another, studying how we may stir up to love and helpful deeds. (Heb. 10:24)

10. Love with ACTION!
Let us not love merely in theory or in speech but in deed and in truth. (1 Jn. 3:18)

Love one another, giving precedence and showing honor to one another. (Ro. 12:10)

Be patient and kind. Not rude or touchy. Do not act unbecomingly or insist on your own way. Always believe the best. (1 Cor. 13)

What about you ladies, what are your goals for being a Mama?

Friday, May 7, 2010

Some Favorite Things

Okay, these are some of my favorite things right now, it changes each day you know?
Our sweet grandson came for a visit last night! I miss him so much. Because of not feeling well the visits have been far and few between. I soaked him up all I could. It astounds me how much I love this little guy. I mean, I thought I could only love like that my own children. I can't get enough of him. He very much loves his mama so he does better with the guys in the family. I have to kind of quietly sneak my way into his heart, which is hard for me, because I want him to love me the best , of course ;-) He does love his Popi, though, which is precious to see!
Levi and his Mimi!

This is two of my favorite things, my Victoria and my new hat! Don't you just love that name, Victoria. It seems so regal and feminine to me. Her name suits her perfectly! She is an amazing daughter. I prayed for years to have a little girl after my three boys. She is a huge blessing. She is so tender of heart, such a good big sister and becoming quite a force to be reckoned with in the kitchen! She adores wearing skirts because they make her feel so 'girly'. I learn so much from her. I tell her, " I want to be like her when I grow up"
Victoria and Mama

I LOVE this picture! Can you see the pictures of Brian and I in the background? They are my all time forever favorite pictures of us. They so display our love for each other and the joy we share as one. When I saw the lilacs there in front of the pictures I just had to capture it.

And, of course, LILACS! Who doesn't love lilacs? They are early this year. Usually, on Mother's Day I awaken to the whole house filled with lilacs. I mean, I think they pick all the bushes bare! Huge boquets of lilacs in nearly every room! So sweet. Do any of you have any tricks to make them last longer in the house? I have heard of smashing the stems so they can soak up more water, anything else?

There you go, some of my favorite things . . . for today!
Return to your rest, O my soul, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you
(Ps. 116:7)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Accepting Oneself

This is just a silly little post that I thought would be fun. I am learning to accept and love myself and I thought it would be fun and therapeutic to post a collage picture (my son has been playing around with a photo editing software) showing the good, the bad and the ugly! It does not matter what we look like on the outside, the Lord looks at the heart. For years I obsessed over outward appearance (and inward for that matter ;-)
So, without further ado, never before seen photos!

I am fearfully and wonderfully made. God chose me before the foundation of the world. He loves me with an everlasting love. I am the apple of His eye and my name is carved in the palm of His hands. Beauty is what He sees when He looks at me.

Notice the pictures are really small, probably impossible to really make them out? Hey, I didn't say I had arrived, just a work in progress! Pooey, I just realized if you click on it, it enlarges it!!!

A Sister In Need of Prayer!!

Ladies, I just read about a sweet Mama who is burying her little baby today, born at 21 weeks. I know of the pain she is experiencing and I know many of you do too. I was wondering if you would mind lifting her in prayer today. Her name is Kim.
Also, with Mother's Day coming up . . . can you imagine? Oh, and this is not the first time she is experiencing this grief.
Read her story here, page down a few posts to read what she calls 'the readers digest version'.
Father God,
You do hold Kim and her family in Your mighty hands. Shower them with Your love and comfort. You send You Son to heal the broken-hearted and to bind up their wounds. Heal them, O Lord and they shall be healed.
In Jesus' Precious Name

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Coconut Pineapple Lime Smoothie

Okay, my sweet friend, Elizabeth from Yes, They're All Ours has requested this recipe, twice. Sorry, Elizabeth, I forgot!

Coconut Pineapple Lime Smoothie

In a blender,

1 can whole coconut milk

1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice

good hunk of fresh pineapple

2 cups ice

few drops of stevia or splash of maple syrup

Blend well and enjoy!

This is so easy and very good for you. It is a guilt-free dessert. When you make things like this for a treat now and then you really won't miss the really bad for you desserts.
We love making a healthy and delicious coconut milk ice cream with coconut milk too, maybe I'll post that one soon!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Delicious Side Dish

I made one of my favorite side dishes tonight and wanted to share it with you. We had pot roast with all the fixins, beef, carrots and potatoes. I don't like to eat a ton of high carb veggies so I made this side dish for myself to go along with my beef. YUMMY!

I have adapted the recipe to my liking, you can find the original here. It is from Giada De Laurentiis, whom I really like. We have so much in common, we both are Italian, and we love to cook (She's a professional though, and gets paid a ton for it. That is where the similarity ends, I guess!)

Greek Caponata

•1 (28-ounce) can whole (or diced) tomatoes with their juice
•2 zucchini, cut into 1-inch rounds
•2 summer squash, cut into 1-inch rounds
•2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
•1 sweet onion, peeled and cut into 1-inch wedges
•3-5 garlic cloves, minced
•1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
•1 1/2 teaspoons salt
•1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
•1 teaspoon dried oregano

Lots of Pecorino Romano Cheese!
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Pour the canned tomatoes into a 9 x 13 baking dish and spread to cover the bottom. Put all the veggies over the tomatoes. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and oregano. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the edges of the vegetables are golden, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Great Mother's Day Idea!

A couple of years ago the Lord gave me such a great idea for Mother's Day that was so 'out-of-the-box'. I am going to share with you what I remember of it in case you think it is something you might want to do sometime.

The day before Mother's Day the Lord dropped into my heart the idea of serving my family in a huge way instead of being served that day. The idea was to bless them and thank God for the privilege of being a mom instead of being thanked for being a good mom.

Here was my plan.
First I made little cards for each child with something that I loved or appreciated about them. Maybe a character quality or gift they have. I made them out of scrapbook paper.

I secretly planned an easy special breakfast and planned to set the table with linens, candles and flowers. I, of course needed to do this once they were in bed. Brian and I scrambled for an hour after everybody was well asleep.

In the morning when they got up prepared to help Brian make me a wonderful breakfast the table was set, the kitchen smelled yummy and I was waiting to bless them! It was so neat to see the wonderment and confusion on their faces.
I had them find their note cards and sit in their seats. I went to each child and read aloud the card I had made for them, through tears of course. I blessed them and hugged them and told them how very much I loved them. One by one, I did this with each child.

I then went to the living room and called my daughters over. We knelt and I proceed to pray for them as they would one day be mothers, Lord willing. I prayed through Proverbs 31. I prayed that they would be courageous like Esther. That they would be faithful like Ruth. That they would be submissive to their husbands, have a gentle and quiet spirit and be obedient like Sarah.

I blessed their wombs and the Godly seed they would one day bring forth.
It was so beautiful and precious.

We enjoyed a wonderful breakfast and I rested the rest of the day, as I was up late, and who doesn't like a little pampering on Mother's Day? Isn't God amazing? He took a day that I would usually be pampered and catered to and asked me to serve instead of being served. Isn't that what Jesus did? It was so special. Lest you think I have somehow 'arrived', don't, I have only done that once ;-)

It's sort of funny, because there have been years that I step into self-pity because the day doesn't go like I want it to. Expectation! Ouch! This was certainly the cure for self-pity and self-indulgence!

Oven Apple French Toast

1 pound loaf Italian bread, sliced
1/2 cup melted butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 t. cinnamon
4 eggs, beaten
1 1/4 cup milk
1 t. vanilla
Melt butter and spread in 11x17 jelly roll pan. Sprinkle brown sugar. Cover brown sugar with sliced apples. Sprinkle with cinnamon and set aside.
In bowl beat eggs, then add milk and vanilla. Dip bread slices in egg mixture and place on top of apples. Pour any extra egg mixture over bread.
Bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes, or until lightly golden. Serve apple side up.
I make this the night before and put in fridge, bake in morning. Might need to add baking time.
7 Layer Brunch
7 large boiled potatoes (boiled with skin on and cooled)
2 cups cheddar cheese
1 lb. cooked bacon, chopped ( I use turkey bacon)
3/4 cup green onion
3 ounce softened cream cheese
1 dozen eggs
salt and pepper to taste
Butter bottom of 9x13 pan. Peel potatoes and shred or dice them. Place in bottom of pan. Sprinkle 1 cup of cheese, bacon, green onions. With an electric mixer, mix eggs with cream cheese. Pour over the rest of the ingredients. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese over top. Cover and put in fridge overnight.
Bake uncovered, in 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes.
These are old recipes that I have added to or changed over the years. I thought to share the original and let you adapt. You probably have your own favorites. They are easy because you can prepare them the night before and just bake in the morning. The whole house smells like yummy cinnamon in the morning.
Let me know what you think? Have you done this type of thing before? What are your ideas for a special Mother's Day?

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Island of Patmos

I was reading a wonderful devotional about the Island of Patmos and immediately I knew I could relate. I feel as though I am on my own little Island of Patmos. John received great revelations, actually the Book of Revelations, on the Island of Patmos! I have been receiving my own little, and some not so little, revelations.

Here is an excerpt:

It might have been thought that John, in his dreary exile, was terribly isolated. Some one has said, not isolated, but insulated, and there is a world of difference between the two. . . Nothing to see! Alone! Ah, but John found it not so! The overwhelming glory of the sight of his risen Lord . . . Most of us are well acquainted with this experience. We may not have had to suffer at the hands of any earthly potentate, but there must be comparatively few who have not, at sometime, had to bury their fondest hopes, their most eager desires. Oh, weary troubled heart, if God has led you to the Island of Buried Hopes, it is that He may show you yet more wonderful things. He has not failed you, nor forgotten you, but has led you into the darkened room because, in His own time and way, He would reveal to you the unsuspected glory of His grace and power.

This is what it feels like for me. This time of seemingly being set aside has turned into the most wonderful time with my Lord. I have always adored His Word, but never like I have of late! I have always soaked up His presence, not never like right now. He is showing me things in His Word that are setting me free and bringing a healing that was quite unexpected. How simple minded I can be, searching for physical healing alone, when my Father longs to bring healing to my whole self; spirit, soul and body! Marvelous are Thy Works!!

A few of the most recent 'revelations' and healings have been, deliverance from an unloving spirit that has had me bound for years! It manifested in my life in perfectionism, drivenness, self-hatred, always struggling with myself, ect. I repented for calling what He calls 'fearfully and wonderfully made', ugly and awful. Once I did this, times of great refreshing came. I now can see the lies I have believed and am able to take the thoughts of self-hatred captive and replace them with the TRUTH!

Another 'revelation', if you will, came when I was reading in the Old Testament. I don't remember the exact scripture right now, but it ministered greatly to my heart. Brian walked into the room as I finished reading and I said, "I don't have to be perfect for God to love me." I think there may have been a light bulb over my because he was able to see this wasn't just some flippant comment; I was serious and for the first time in my life I actually believed it! We both had tears in our eyes. This man has been telling me this and many other things for years. He was thrilled to see I finally believed it.

Another big 'revelation' is that I am a great mama! I have been believing a lie forever, it seems! I am not the mama I was ten years ago, and I am not the mama I will be ten years from now, but I am a very good mama! Once I was delivered from that unloving spirit, the blinders came off and I was able to see lie after lie I have believed! Again, when I shared this with Brian, we both cried. How many times has he told me I am a good mama?! The burden I saw leave him was so precious. He loves me so much and how awful to see someone you love with all your heart literally hate themselves and constantly beat themselves up!

So, I don't think I can possibly put into words the magnitude of just these few revelations, but they are only the beginning. There are so many things that are being dealt with. I sort of feel like what my children felt like the first time they wore their glasses. We walked out the doctor's office and they were astounded at what the world really looked like. That is how I feel. I am seeing things like I have never seen before.

We start an online seminar on Monday. Please continue to pray for us for the next few weeks. I really do sense that this is just the beginning and it might get ugly before it gets beautiful.
Look at the precious verse the Lord put on my heart today.

Arise, shine;
For your light has come!
And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you.
For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people;
But the LORD will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
The Gentiles shall come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising.
“ Lift up your eyes all around, and see:
They all gather together, they come to you;
Your sons shall come from afar,
And your daughters shall be nursed at your side.
Then you shall see and become radiant,
And your heart shall swell with joy;
Because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you,
The wealth of the Gentiles shall come to you.

(Isaiah 60:1-5)
Do you find yourself on your own Island of Patmos? Maybe you are surrounded and overtaken by little people day in and day out. Maybe you are on a sickbed or great with child. Maybe you feel all alone and isolated in your marriage. Whatever it is, lift up your eyes and see your Risen Lord Who loves you and will show you great and glorious things!
Have a lovely weekend, dear friends!