Category Archives: Bible

Monday

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Remember 9/11. We didn’t do a stair climb or attend any services, just remembered it at home.

School went well today. Bethany took Hannah to breakfast while I helped Grace with school, then she took Grace to lunch and I helped Hannah. We started Worship dance and they moved times around, so Hannah and I went at 2, she had ballet at 3 and Grace went at 4. There are 5 adults, 5 kids in Hannah’s class and 12 in Grace’s class (that might change.) The theme this session is Love and relationships, God to us, us to God and us to other believers.

God to us
God’s love is – unconditional, sacrificial, generous, serving, treasures, relational

God does not love our sin because it creates a wall, on one side is God, always flowing love toward us, on the other side is us. With the wall of sin we can never reach the love of God, when we tear down the wall, the love that was always there flows to us
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God’s love – John 17:22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

Think about that, He loves us even as He loved His own son. You are not a speck, unworthy, hopeless, lost cause, you are someone that God loves as much as He loves His own son.

Romans 5:5 God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

God loves us, Jesus loved us so much that he sacrificed Himself and put us before Him, and God also gives us love through the Holy Spirit.

If you have doubts, worries, are confused, go back to the Word and rely on the foundation that is set. People make mistakes, if we had an oral history handed down – we could doubt its veracity. But, we have the Living Word of God set down to read, if you read it, you will find that there are truths you cannot doubt – God made you, He loves you, He has always loved you and always will, He waits patiently for you, He treasures you because you are wonderfully made, a son or daughter of a King, bought with a price, made whole and LOVED.

1 Corinthians 13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails…..13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

The chicken enchilada casserole I made in the crockpot was good, and a bit spicy. We went by Guitar center to see about getting Hannah’s ukulele restrung and popped by Toys R Us to pester Alex.

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Weekend

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Saturday Bethany came home, took the girls to Chipotle for lunch, then they all walked to Target. James and I went to Castlewood canyon to hike to the dam. We started at the observation deck, then went to the Lake gulch trailhead.

It was pretty smoky from the Montana fires, not that you can tell in the pictures.

We crossed the creek and saw the dam – or what’s left of it. The dam was built in 1890 and lasted until 1933 when it broke and flooded Denver (Denver’s second worst flood.)

We went down to the creek bottom trail to get a better look.

We had to go up on the way back (since it was downhill all the way), but it wasn’t too bad. We went to Saltgrass for lunch and had some Royal crown and coke slushies that were very good. Back at home we rested and watched Ace in the Hole. I forget where I read about this movie, probably one of the books I’m reading, but it was a good movie about media, ethics and how human interest stories are made.

Image result for ace in the hole movie

Cat logic.

After dinner we took the girls to LM’s for Swinging Saturday. There was a nice sunset on the way.

We had 3 pumpkin chai ice creams and 1 oreo.

FB live video of the music and dancing here. 

Sunday we went to church (Daniel in the Lion’s den), had lunch at home and then took James to the chutes. He tubed for a bit, then spent the next 2 hours jumping in with us. The water was at 121 CFS and 57 degrees, but it was 92 out, so it felt great. Hannah was posing.

After we got home and cleaned up we Facetimed with Joel and had BBQ ribs for dinner. Joel played some music for us on his guitar and violin, talked about an upcoming PT test, drills and showed us his room (he redecorated.) One cool thing he did was he covered a whole wall in Army sheet music. After we hung up with him we watched a Blake and Father Brown, the girls had a friend come over and she stayed late (since she didn’t have school on Monday.)

The week – school, picnic, hike, Louise Penny at LT (just me), NIA, Penn and Teller, Blue man group, Park Hill walking tour, Homeschool group’s 15th anniversary party, church and our church’s 25th anniversary picnic.

Dinners this week – grill night, garlic lime chicken, pulled pork BBQ, Vegas, Vegas, breakfast for dinner, 15th anniversary party cookout, 25th church anniversary picnic.

Spicy Garlic Lime Chicken

3/4 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried parsley
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
3 tablespoons lime juice

In a small bowl, mix together salt, black pepper, cayenne, paprika, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, onion powder, thyme and parsley. Sprinkle spice mixture generously on both sides of chicken breasts.
Heat butter and olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Saute chicken until golden brown, about 6 minutes on each side. Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons garlic powder and lime juice. Cook 5 minutes more, stirring frequently to coat evenly with sauce.

Choices

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I forgot to write the notes down from last Sunday, but this flows better with two Sundays of notes.

We are delving into the book of Daniel at church and really the message that we are all Daniels living in a less than Jesus friendly environment is never going to change. If you are a Jesus follower, then this is your Babylon. The world is never going to be for you, never going to follow God the way you do – we live in a fallen world and the headlines on the news every day show us that when men harden their hearts – evil abounds. So, how do we change that?

First – what is your identity? What is your purpose? If you don’t know who you are or what you are doing here – it is very easy for the world to get to you. Through isolation – making you believe that you are the only person who does that Jesus thing. Through indoctrination – teaching things other than what you believe. Through identity confusion – if you don’t know that you are a son or daughter of the King, you can be made to believe anything about who you are, how you were made and what your future holds. Living in Babylon, Daniel and his friends were pushed to become Babylonian. They were given new names, fed different food, separated from their tribe, taught new ideas and told that they were no longer one thing, but another. But none of this changed Daniel and his friends because they knew WHO they were and WHAT their purpose was and WHY they were there. The culture we live in constantly changes, are you pulled back and forth in the flow? Or are you a constant, knowing who you are, what you are doing here and who placed you for that purpose?

If you don’t know who you are:

you are loved,

you are unique,

you are special,

you are amazing,

you were created for a purpose,

you are not defined by your circumstances,

you are not defined by your past,

you are saved – if you want to be,

by grace – which you can’t earn,

you wear a crown if you are a Jesus follower because you are a son or daughter of a King.

Secondly – choices. We all make choices every day. Big ones, small ones, but your life is a series of choices. If you know who you are then you have a line in the sand. When you need to make a choice, make it a God honoring one. When temptation comes, you have a place to look if you know where the boundary is – if you want to honor God, then your choice is sure. Honor God with your actions. Don’t fall for the peer pressure of ‘everyone’s doing it’ or ‘no one here knows you, so you can do something you wouldn’t normally do’. Could Daniel have eaten the food that was offered to him? Yes, no one there knew him, no one would know if he broke a rule – but he honored God with his actions, he declined to eat the food that he knew was not going to honor God. Honor God with how you treat others. The guards respected Daniel because he did his job well and was courteous and respectful to those around him. Honor God with your words. Words are powerful, written or spoken, so use them to honor not to defile. Honor God with your knowledge. Daniel and his friends were given more resources and learned a lot in their training time. The more the knew, the better they were able to serve, the better they were at serving the more people they influenced. They were able to show and tell others about God because they made a choice – to honor God in everything they did.

Living in a fallen world is not easy. I can’t change others, but I can change myself. Knowing who I am, why I am here, making God honoring choices and tending to my purpose here helps me on my path and helps others too.

Observation day

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I can’t believe it’s already time for observation at dance.

Our devotional – God provides for our needs, we need to be confident and have an expectation of good – He is a good Father. If we are honest with our physical, emotional and spiritual needs with others, we will ask not just God, but those around us to help with our needs. Often God will pair up people with needs; you can have needs and still be a blessing to others. Check out the story of the widow and Elijah.

I Kings 17  

Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the Lord came to him: “Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widow there to supply you with food.” 10 So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?” 11 As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”

12 “As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”

13 Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son.14 For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’”

15 She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. 16 For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.

Elijah needed water and food, the widow needed food. Notice that when God sent Elijah, He had already prompted the widow – but, she was honest with Elijah. She said, this is the very last thing that I have to eat. She was reassured that her needs would be met, she obeyed and was blessed. Elijah too, had a need, obeyed and was blessed. Can you see the look of surprise on the face of the widow when her jar of flour was full the next day and the jug of oil was replenished? Or the next day? In order to be surprised by God we need to be willing to act and do what He asks. Then we might not be the only ones surprised by grace as we look to meet the needs to others.

James 1: 16-18 …..Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. He brought us to life using the true Word,…

Galatians 6:2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
Matthew 25:34-36 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.’

37-40 “Then those ‘sheep’ are going to say, ‘Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?’ Then the King will say, ‘I’m telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.’

We have a new snake that has made a home in the front bushes, Hannah is calling him Python.

Sunday

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Why does no one like an umpire? Because they have to make judgement calls and one side always feels like they are on the losing end of his decision. We don’t like to be judged, yet there is this innate desire in us that wants to judge others. The original sin was all about judging – the fruit of the tree was the knowledge of good and evil, so eating the fruit gave Adam and Eve the ability to know the boundaries and judge those who crossed them. Some say, the church is full of hypocrites and they’re right – come join, you’ll fit right in! The point is not that Christians are perfect, Jesus never said that His followers were to be perfect, but that you would grow, mature and make better decisions, and that ultimately your ‘soul’ sight would be so good that you could see your own faults and work on yourself, then others. Most of the time when we hear a sermon we use it as an opportunity to deflect onto others (boy, that was a great sermon on not gossiping, I’ll tell it to Marge at work tomorrow so she can work on that in her life.) Instead we should take the information and reflect on it in our own lives. Our goal is not to be judge and jury, but to be discerning and evaluating things in the world and in our lives. Our goal is not to point out others faults, but to tend to our own hearts in repentance, and then go and help others to discern the truth.

Matthew 7

A Simple Guide for Behavior

1-5 “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults— unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbor’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. Do you have the nerve to say, ‘Let me wash your face for you,’ when your own face is distorted by contempt? It’s this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbor….12 “Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God’s Law and Prophets and this is what you get.

Image result for groucho marx blessed are the cracked

Those who know they are cracked vessels will allow the light to come in and heal, then they will shine that light out to others.

 I stand

On Christ the solid rock I stand

all other ground is sinking sand,

on His name I stake my ground

my hope in Him alone is found. 

When the way is peaceful

or when painful roads prevail,

I will always lift my head

and praise Him without fail. 

Blessed are those with trouble

who lean on Him all the more,

Blessed are those who are broken

and have healed hearts that soar. 

Blessed are those whose cracks

let the Light shine through, 

Blessed are those who wait on Him

and seek hard after the Truth. 

On Christ the solid rock I stand

and my soul sings out a song,

for I have staked my ground

with Him this whole life long.

-Liese

After church the kids stayed (A had come to youth group with Bethany and stayed too) to paint the youth room. I thought this was quite funny as James and I met at a church, painting the youth room…

Some flowers from our neighbors yard. Spring is coming!

I made extra bread tonight so I could give away some to the neighbors. I had to move the bread to a bigger bowl…

It’s so good right out of the oven. After dinner we went to Sweet Cooie’s with James, his first time there. I had the lemon meringue pie on shortbread cookies – yum!

The week – no dance, hike, gym, NIA, St. John’s music at noon, Pi day at the library with Long I Pie, library lecture about Rome, printmaking at the library, TNO, Creativity club, youth groups, homeschool skate, Teen MCA wake and make (mini-pinatas), school. Grace might take water samples this week – just depends on timing.

Dinners – Navy beans and sausage with homemade peasant bread, pineapple pork chops with bok choy and squash, tamale 3.14159 (get it? Pi?Pie!), ham quiche and spinach-mushroom quiche, chicken makhani with sweet potatoes, garlic beef roast and cabbage, lemon chicken piccata over gf noodles with a lemon cream sauce.

Tamale pie

cooking spray
2 pounds ground beef
2 cups diced poblano peppers
1 teaspoon salt
1 (16 ounce) jar salsa
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper
(If you want it to be even better ditch the boxed cornbread and make mine from scratch – recipe below.)
2 (8.5 ounce) boxes dry corn muffin mix (such as Jiffy®)
2 eggs
2/3 cup milk, divided
4 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
8 ounces frozen corn, thawed

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Spray a 9×13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray.
Cook and stir ground beef in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until meat starts to brown and release juices, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium and stir in poblano peppers, salt, salsa, oregano, and chipotle powder; cook and stir until seasoned beef is crumbly and no longer pink, about 10 minutes.
Mix one package of corn muffin mix in a large bowl with 1 egg and 1/3 cup of milk. Whisk to combine. In a separate large bowl, mix the second package of corn muffin mix with 1 egg, 1/3 cup of milk and half the Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses.
Spread the prepared corn muffin mixture without cheese into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle corn over the muffin mix, followed by remaining half of the cheeses, then the beef mixture.
Spoon the corn muffin mix with cheese on top of the beef and carefully spread over the top with a fork, leaving about half an inch from the edges of the pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, until golden brown.

Johnny cake cornbread (you can use this in place of the boxed stuff – obviously don’t bake it as directed, use it as the above recipe calls for.)

1/2 C sugar
1/2 C oil
1 egg
1 C Sour milk (add a few drops of vinegar to the milk to sour it, or don’t; it really doesn’t matter)
1 t soda
1/2 t salt
1 C + 2 T flour
1 C yellow cornmeal
1 t baking powder

Cream sugar, oil and egg. Dissolve soda in milk. Combine dry ingredients and add to creamed mix with milk. Stir until just mixed. Pour into an 8X8 pan (I use an iron skillet) and bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes on until it tests done (knife in the middle comes out clean.)

Chicken makhani

1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
1/4 white onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 cup half-and-half (or almond/cashew milk)
1 cup tomato puree
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 pinch salt
1 pinch black pepper
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup water

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Saute shallot and onion until soft and translucent. Stir in butter, lemon juice, ginger-garlic paste, 1 teaspoon garam masala, chili powder, cumin and bay leaf.
Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add tomato sauce, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in half-and-half and yogurt. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Season with salt pepper.
Remove from heat and set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Cook chicken until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Reduce heat, and season with 1 teaspoon garam masala and cayenne. Stir in a few spoonfuls of sauce, and simmer until liquid has reduced, and chicken is no longer pink. Stir cooked chicken into sauce.
Mix together cornstarch and water, then stir into the sauce. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until thickened.

Be strong!

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There was a blizzard this morning that lasted about 20 minutes.

Then, blue sky.

Before dance – doctor. They thought it wasn’t broken, then looked closer at the x-ray and said yes, there is a fracture on the radius at the elbow.

It was splinted, wrapped and put in a sling and the Ortho doc will be calling to see us in a few days.

My kind act was to copy some art for the ladies in my group.

From dance – Be strong and courageous. Keep your eyes on me, focus on the Word, teach the people what I say, do not fear, you have power and authority!

Fear is my choice – who do I want to partner with? I am commanded to say no to fear. Jesus has all authority and power, He gave it to us, so any authority that is given – we give it. Our position makes us have the capacity for authority. I have authority from God in me because of my union with Jesus. Power is in me due to my life posture. Authority is absolute, power is relative. I can use or not use my power in Christ. I can know that I have authority because I am set free and I am restored – but I may not be using the power that I have to minister to others. It’s not so much about me, it’s about the lives that God wants me to be used in. Whenever there is an encounter between the Kingdom of Light and the kingdom of darkness, Light will win every time. Fear not, the power that raised Jesus from the dead is in you. So, when you have repented, posture yourself through prayer and come to the stage of rebuking, resisting and renouncing the enemy. A spiritual transaction occurs when you take fear and choose not to give into it, when you pray and overcome evil, when you claim strength and use it, when you are brave and overcome.

Joshua 1: 5-9 

I’ll be with you. I won’t give up on you; I won’t leave you. Strength! Courage! You are going to lead this people to inherit the land that I promised to give their ancestors. Give it everything you have, heart and soul. Make sure you carry out The Revelation that Moses commanded you, every bit of it. Don’t get off track, either left or right, so as to make sure you get to where you’re going. And don’t for a minute let this Book of The Revelation be out of mind. Ponder and meditate on it day and night, making sure you practice everything written in it. Then you’ll get where you’re going; then you’ll succeed. Haven’t I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take.”

Psalm 31:24 Be brave. Be strong. Don’t give up. Expect God to get here soon.
 
Daniel 10:19 Messenger: Do not be afraid, you who are highly regarded by God. May peace rest on you and make you whole; be strong; be brave.
 
Matthew 10:28 “Don’t be bluffed into silence by the threats of bullies. There’s nothing they can do to your soul, your core being. Save your fear for God, who holds your entire life—body and soul—in his hands.
 
Matthew 10:30,31 You, beloved, are worth so much more than a whole flock of sparrows. God knows everything about you, even the number of hairs on your head. So do not fear.
 
Romans 8:31 So what should we say about all of this? If God is on our side, then tell me: whom should we fear?
The lemon chicken was very good, but the parsnips and brussel sprouts were the bomb!

Mardi Gras and baking cakes

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The girls never got out of their pajamas today. Hannah’s goal was to stay in pj’s all day and she met her goal. Grace was baking cakes almost all day for a co-op tomorrow, so she also stayed in her pj’s. Someone left a note on the counter this morning –

So, I got this at the store –

And I got these just because.

Bethany and I went to Holy Yoga and the Bible verse for meditation was from Matthew 6:

16-18 “When you practice some appetite-denying discipline to better concentrate on God, don’t make a production out of it. It might turn you into a small-time celebrity but it won’t make you a saint. If you ‘go into training’ inwardly, act normal outwardly. Shampoo and comb your hair, brush your teeth, wash your face. God doesn’t require attention-getting devices. He won’t overlook what you are doing; he’ll reward you well.

Oh, I see what you did there Heather. Ash Wednesday is tomorrow and normally I would be seeking out a church (ours doesn’t always offer ashes) for a morning Ash Wednesday service. But, something my dance teacher said last session is still sticking with me, is there any day that is more Holy than others? Is there any day that I should get up and say on this day I am repentant, on this day I am broken – or is that something that happens every day…So, yeah, I will be broken in solitude.

After that James and I left for Englewood Grand, not because of the drinks special for Mardi Gras or for the King cake, but for that good jazz. You can hear it here.