Monthly archive for December 2019

My Burden is Light

My Burden is Light

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. PHILIPPIANS 4:6 I’ve been anxious about worry for most of my life. The best I can figure my sanguine nature (Lighten up!) wars with my spiritual gift of administration (Is it safe? Is it economical? Will it work?). The resulting combination produced an honor roll student who worried about  every test. Classes were more of a challenge to excel than an opportunity to learn. So, when I enrolled in First Place 4 Health, the class and its expectations were not without stress. Change the way I eat? Exercise everyday? (And worst of all . . .) Record my weight every week? I have to say that I went home and had a long talk with the Lord. I told Him that I didn’t need more stress in my life. And

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The Super-est Super Food

The Super-est Super Food

It’s not that I’m a food snob. That’s not the reason I walk the aisles of my local grocery store with a judgmental attitude that I prefer to call “discernment.” It’s because I’m wiser than I once was. No matter what’s on my grocery list, I notice things with invisible labels: Empty Calories Not the Best Choice Better Option in the Next Bin You’ll Regret This One Not Worth the Miles It Will Take to Work This Off Instant Gratification/Long-Term Payment Plan Might as Well Mainline Trans-Fats Heart Attack Platter Eat at Your Own Risk Why Is This Shelved with Real Food? I also notice gems—like veins of gold sparkling among the layers of tundra gravel. Superfoods! Be still my— I mean, be active, my heart! Blueberries Kale Cherries Broccoli Spinach Tea Legumes Nuts Seeds Olive Oil Ginger Some resources list ten superfoods. Others 25. But of all the lists

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Way Beyond My Strength

Way Beyond My Strength

 “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”  (Philippians 4:13) The five volcanos that make up the Big Island of Hawaii create a challenging course for the mini-triathlon I do each year. My favorite part is the first and shortest segment of the race, a 1/3 mile ocean swim. Once out of the water, I race barefooted to my gear station to don socks, shoes, helmet and sunglasses, and off I go to tackle the longest segment of the race, the 15-mile bike ride. The biking is 7.5 miles out and back. The first part of the ride is enjoyable with stunning ocean views. At mile six, the road turns in toward the mountain and begins the climb to 191 feet. I think about how hard this hill will be when I face it again on the way back. A devilish whisper suggests, “Turn back now. You

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Beyond Free

Beyond Free

Many of you bravely walked the pages of Gari Meacham’s first Bible Study called Be Free. Hopefully, you started the hard work of climbing the hills of freedom, establishing safe perimeters of hope and tenacious belief as you came to the understanding of our Savior’s mandate “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” In Beyond Free, we’ll travel to the strong places of mature assurance. We’ll study the power of obedience and discover what chains may still hold us in of defeat. Beyond Free isn’t a place we arrive when we’ve studied hard enough and mastered self-control. It’s the brilliant knowledge that we can’t go back—we won’t go back—to lesser ways. It’s the revelation that God’s Kingdom is vast and inviting, and anything that keeps us from its fullness and pleasure must go.  It’s the understanding that Jesus wants access to the darkest closets of

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Speedy Chicken Soup

Speedy Chicken Soup

Speedy Chicken Soup 2 c. chicken, cooked and shredded 4 14-oz. cans fat-free chicken broth 1 c. peeled, sliced carrots 1 c. snow peas, cut diagonally into strips 1/4 c. instant rice 2 scallions, sliced Salt and pepper to taste Bring broth to boil in large pot over high heat; add chicken, carrots, snow peas, rice and scallions. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes more or until carrots are tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately or allow to cool and freeze for later use. Serves 4. Tracker: 4 oz-eq Protein, 1 oz-eq Grain, 1/2 cup vegetables

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Best Christmas Gift Ever?

What is the best, most fabulous, wonderful Christmas gift you ever received? I’ve received beautifully wrapped gold jewelry from my husband. I’ve received homemade Christmas ornaments from my kids. (Thank you, teachers!). I’ve received countless homemade goodies from precious church people. All of these gifts have meant something to me. But by far, the best gift I ever received was in the fall of 1972 when I received the incomparable gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. That gift changed my life forever. Jesus is the Master Gift Giver. His gifts are never returned or abandoned in the pile of Christmas wrapping. His gifts are priceless. His gifts have purpose. The gifts we receive in Christ are riches beyond measure! His gifts have everything we need for life and godliness. These are just a few of the gifts we receive in Christ: He has given us forgiveness and righteousness: Our sins

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Giving

Wess Stafford, the former CEO and President of Compassion International, said, “The opposite of poverty is not wealth. The opposite of poverty is generosity.” When we freely give to those around us, we are truly rich. When we freely give and expect nothing in return, we are truly rich. When we freely give, and it costs us something, we are truly rich. Giving generously does not mean you have to impact your bank account (even though that is a key way to be generous.) The most expensive commodity we have is our time. Time cannot be saved. Time is limited, and we won’t have more hours in the day when the kids get out of the house, or we retire. We are all given 10,080 hours a week. What are you going to do with your weekly allotment this December? Will you be selfish and keep it all for yourself?

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