The Greatest Commandment…

billy graham 2

“Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together.  One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:  “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Matthew 22:34-40

Negativity

What negativity do you let into your life?  Crazy isn’t it?.. How we don’t even notice it, but before long we are swimming in negativity and sometimes even drowning.  Like the proverbial frog in the pot of boiling water.  We don’t know what has hit us until it is too late.

For me it is all about image.  How do I look?  I have hated how I look since I was a small child and the scary thing is when I look at my photos from then, I was a beautiful young girl with absolutely nothing wrong with me.  I wasn’t overweight nor did I have any other issues that would cause me to stand out or think I look terrible. But I hated how I looked none-the-less.

Today I struggle with my weight and other health issues and I am working hard to remedy that.  I am doing CrossFit and eating healthier but what I lack is self confidence and a belief that God can truly help me through what I am dealing with.  I have thyroid issues and pain issues and just plain self hate issues.  God can deal with those and heal them if I “let” Him, but I let my negativity over how I look and feel now overwhelm and even kill how I will look and feel in the future.

I truly need to remove the negativity and completely replace it with God’s truth and that is that I am wonderfully and beautifully made and that God created me for a purpose, and part of that purpose is to be healed and lead others down that same path through my story and my faith.

Not as easy as it sounds, but with His help… I believe it is something that will truly come to pass.  What negativity are you holding on to?  How does it affect your life?  Are you still above water, or are you sinking?

This was written from a prompt from Free Write Friday.  The topic was the picture that is shown above.  To join the writing prompt click the button below and it will take you to Free Write Friday’s page.

free write friday kellie elmore

Whit’s End Mealtime Devotions Giveaway! – WINNER, WINNER!

Wooohooo!  We have a winner!  After a very scientific approach, well ok, maybe not so scientific… but definitely fair approach we have a winner to this drawing!  I put all the names on a piece of paper, crumbled them all up and put them in a basket and had my hubby pick one.  🙂

And the winner is……..  Michelle!

Congratulations Michelle.  I will be contacting you soon to find out your mailing information.

For everyone else who participated…. A Huge THANK YOU!  Please check out my current giveaway at http://wp.me/s2WVaA-imagine, I would love for one of you to win those books as well!

God Bless each of you!

Imagine!

Last month I brought to you an exciting new thing that Focus on the Family’s Adventure in Odyssey is doing this summer called “Summer of Service A.C.T.S.”  We talked about how good it is for kids to serve in some way because our Lord and Savior came here on earth to serve.  You can read more about it in the link provided above.

This month they are having some more fun with a giveaway.  Woohoo!  🙂   But first Let’s talk about the imagination!

Unleashing Imagination

Children are spending more and more time in front of TVs, iPads, computers, and video games.  I am so grateful my Muppin is more into using her imagination that using electronics.  I pray that lasts a long time!  Spending so much time using today’s wonderful gadgets doesn’t leave much room for kids to dream up their own visual images—like the ones that fill their minds when they hear a great story! Rather than passively receiving images, kids actively engage in making images themselves when they hear a good story. Their imaginations are enriched and stimulated, and the material becomes more personal and memorable.  I know when I am reading and then see a movie of that book I am never satisfied with the look of the characters because my mind has “imagined” them completely different!

Adventures in Odyssey is all about great stories—and the power of the imagination. The beloved audio dramas are heard on over 700 radio stations, and AIO has recently expanded to books and devotionals—including The Imagination Station series, a fast-growing line of early chapter readers. You can check them out by downloading a FREE e-book of Imagination Station #1: Voyage with the Vikings!

This summer, Adventures in Odyssey encourages kids to write their OWN stories, as they join in ACTS: A Call to Serve! AIO is helping children use their imaginations to serve their family, community, and world this summer—maybe by sending a care package to a missionary or baking cookies for the local fire department or simply talking to the older person at the store who is often forgotten by most people in society today. Check out www.whitsend.org/acts  for details and a chance to win fabulous prizes, including a mission trip with a parent to Costa Rica!

More important than prizes are the stories your child will tell about the creative ways they served others, and how they grew as a result. And what they come up with really might change the world!

A Creative Story of Service

My Muppin has a sweet heart and she is always thinking of those around her who are hurting. She often wants to give to those standing on street corners with signs and sometimes we have it to give and sometimes we don’t, and when that happens her heart is saddened by it.  Not too long ago we were eating and we saw a woman sitting by herself eating.  She was an older woman and looked dreadfully alone and sad.  My daughter couldn’t stop looking at her though I continued to tell her to stop starring.  Finally I asked her why she was so intent on starring and she said, “Mommy, she is so alone, can’t we  pay for her food so it will make her smile just a little today?”  With my heart swelling with happiness I complied and as we left we did just that.  I don’t know what impact that had on her, but it was amazing for my daughter.  What can you do with your kids to spread the act of service around you?

Exciting Giveaway!

For the fun of it I am giving away a fun set of books!  The Imagination Station books #1-3!

imagination giveawayTo enter here are the rules!

1.  Please leave a post below with ways that their family are planning to serve this summer.

2.  Share this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest and leave me the links to your posts here too so that I can give you credit for another entry.

3.  Lastly, if you don’t already follow my blog, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest page, please do so and you will receive an entry for each of those as well.

You will get an entry for each and every item you do!  What fun is that!!  The giveaway will end Saturday the 29th of June!  So get your entries in soon and have fun serving the world around you!

Most Delicious Comfort Food Ever!

One of my most favorite blogs ever is The Nourishing Home!  If you don’t know about them you are really missing out.  Kelly’s blog is about eating healthy and doing so in such a way that it is joyful and fulfilling.  You truly see the Lord’s heart when visiting her site.  What more can you ask for when getting healthy?

Kelly has a weekly meal planner that she puts on her blog and it has always been free!  I have found so many new recipes by following her plan.  It is amazing.  Her meal plan isn’t just for dinner though, she uses the left-overs to plan out the breakfasts and lunches of the next day!  YAY!!!

I don’t use her entire meal planner because there are only 3 of us and it tends to be too much for us.  So I pick 4 days and that is what we have used in the past for our planner.  You can see her most current meal plan here.  Meal Plan Monday: May 27 – June 9

One of my favorite meals comes from Kelly.  It is her Turkey-Veggie Meatloaf (GF Option).  Just click the title and you can see her recipe there.  I am not a lover of Turkey though, so I made some changes that I thought my family would love and my goodness… do they love it!! EVEN my extremely picky 8-year-old Muppin!  She would eat it every single day of the week if I let her.  She will even eat it over my chicken nuggets!  That says a lot 😉

I make mine almost exactly like Kelly does. Below you can see my changes below 🙂  With those changes you now have to call it the Chicken-Veggie Meatloaf though 😉

meatloaf 1

Isn’t this beautiful!

First I saute these:

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onion
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped carrot
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped organic zucchini
  • 1/4 tsp Celtic sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp onion powder

Then I crush either the gluten free crackers or toasted gluten free bread (you can use regular ones if you do not need the gluten free option).

I then mix the rest together in a bowl:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup crushed crackers or bread
  • ground chicken
  • cooled sauteed vegetables

Then using my hands I mix them all together, not too much though or it toughens the meat.

I don’t like to make the meatloaf in a pan because it takes too long to cook, so I use a cookie sheet and form them into individual size loaves.  I don’t make them very thick either, maybe an inch or so, because I like them to cook quick. (Hint, I use a meat thermometer to test how hot they are in the center so I know when to take them out.  That way I don’t over cook them and make them all dry.)

I then add dried red pepper to the top of the adults.  Double for my man, he likes them HOT..  lol You can see one is made into a rectangle, and that is because I like to cut it into small rectangles after it is cooked to make it fun for my daughter, she can eat them like fries.  Anything to get them to eat healthy right 😉

meatloaf 2They only take 15 to 30 minutes to cook depending on how thick you make them.  When they have 10 minutes left that is when I put the topping on mine and my hubbies, the Muppin doesn’t like topping.  We don’t use ketchup we use BBQ sauce.

meatloaf 4Don’t forget you can roast your veggies at the same time 😉  When all is said and done, this is the most moist meatloaf you will ever taste!  Much more figure friendly too!

meatloaf 5If you are doing Weight Watchers this 3 ounce meatloaf has only 4 points, without the sauce it would be 3.  Amazingly light meal and yet filling and delicious.  Thanks Kelly at The Nourishing Home for this wonderful idea!  I hope you all enjoy and are inspired to treat your body good!