How to GET and STAY Hungry

get-and-stay-hungry

I debated on what the best title would be for this post. I started with “How to Stretch Your Stomach” but decided on “How to GET and STAY Hungry.” Yes, both titles are equally peculiar, until they’re explained.

As you may have suspected, today’s post is not about the physical body but the soul. The hungering I refer to is that of a Christian hungering for righteousness, godliness, or an intimate walk with God.

Matthew 5:6

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.

Even though I spend time daily in God’s Word and in prayer, I often feel the pull of the world on my soul. When I become careless or laxidasical in my walk with the Lord the pull feels stronger, and I’m more prone to make compromises. For instance, there are certain things I won’t watch on television, but after a while I start to make exceptions.

I remember as a teenager hearing a sad and sobering spiritual analogy. Supposedly, a frog can be boiled while still alive without the frog even trying to get out of the water. (I don’t know if this is actually true, but it’s what I was told.)

[...Continue reading this post.]

Is Jesus Amazed at You?

Is-Jesus-Amazed-at-You

Recently, as I was having my daily devotions, I came across a passage that stopped me in my tracks. I’ve read the passage a number of times in the past, but it still made me pause.

This particular historical account is recorded in the first part of Luke 7. Jesus had been teaching and healing people. A servant who was highly regarded by his master, a centurion, was near death. The centurion heard that Jesus was near and sent servants to ask Jesus to come heal this sickly servant. Then, the passage reads as follows:

Luke 7:6-10

6) Then Jesus went with them. And when He was already not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to Him, saying to Him, “Lord, do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof.

7) Therefore I did not even think myself worthy to come to You. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.

8) For I also am a man placed under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

9) When Jesus heard these things, He marveled at him, and turned around and said to the crowd that followed Him, “I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!”

10) And those who were sent, returning to the house, found the servant well who had been sick.

The text above is from the New King James Version (NKJV). Verse 9 in the New International Version (NIV) reads, “When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, ….” Thus, the title of this post.

[...Continue reading this post.]

A Hobby, A Passion … Or An Idol? {My Story And Help For Others}

We all have some kind of hobby, maybe even something we’re passionate about. It might be

- anything and everything organic,
- gardening,
- cooking,
- landscaping,
- homesteading,
- blogging,
- exercising,
- home improvement projects,
- maybe even a job, or
- a million other possibilities.

For me, it’s gardening, landscaping, and blogging …

hobby-passion_or-idol

I remember a few years ago being utterly consumed with landscaping (the appearance of my ornamental garden beds, and dreams of future projects). It got to a point that it ruled my mind, thoughts … my heart.

Under strong conviction, I took a 3-day fast from landscaping. I needed concentrated time away from it, to get my heart where it needed to be.

When our motives are wrong, these hobbies and passions can be used for selfish gain, pride, and prestige. We’re no longer vessels of God’s grace and goodness; we’re, quite simply, idolaters. We’ve taken God off the throne of our heart, and placed these things in His rightful place.

On the other hand, God can use our hobbies and passions for His glory, if His glory is our greatest desire. When we commit theses areas of our lives to God, He gives us enjoyment in them, and impacts other lives through ours.

There’s nothing wrong, in and of itself, with gardening, cooking, homesteading, blogging, etc. It’s when they’re more important to us than God, that’s when we have a problem.

My flesh continually gravitates to the things of the world (again, not necessarily bad things, but a pre-occupation with them), but the Lord continually, and lovingly, draws me back to Him.

I wanted to share some things the Lord has used to help me. (If I struggle with this, maybe others do, too.)

1. Ask a series of self-assessment questions.

  • What’s the first thing I think about when waking up?
  • What’s the last thing I think about when falling asleep?
  • What do I spend most of my free time thinking about?
  • If I were to die today, what would I be most remembered for? What would others say was the most important thing in my life? Something of eternal value?

[...Continue reading this post.]

Bubbling Boulder – The Price Tag

I’m gonna be completely honest with you. I’ve been a little nervous about this particular post because our bubbling boulder project was a bit pricey. Will I offend people? Will people misunderstand my logic? Will people unsubscribe or unlike? I hope not. :)

Many blogs are centered on, or have a strong element of, FRUGALITY. Being frugal, if it’s Biblically-centered and not an all-consuming obsession, is very wise. And there are some really great blogs that provide excellent examples and ideas of how to do that.

Being frugal is one way of being a wise steward of the financial and material blessings in our lives. If we find a good deal, and are able to save money, it helps us steer clear of debt. It also provides us more opportunities to help those in need here and abroad.

On the flip side, many times God blesses people in such a way that they are able not only to give, but also enjoy some earthly pleasures. That might mean they’re able to pay for a second car, build a room onto the house, revamp an out-building for homestead critters, or … build a bubbling boulder oasis.

[...Continue reading this post.]

A 5-Year Old, A Teddy Bear, And A Prayer

present_dt

© Pedro Antonio Salaverría Calahorra | Dreamstime.com

One November day, back when we lived in Missouri, Mom decided to load us all into the car, and go Christmas shopping. This was no easy task. I was five, Heather was three, and Titus was somewhere around one. Mom had her hands full.

What an exciting time for a young child – so many Christmas gift possibilities! It didn’t take me long to find the perfect teddy bear that wanted to go home with me. It was perfect in every way. I couldn’t tell you today

[... Click here to continue reading this post.]

Where to Find Free Landscaping Stones

rock2

No matter what the project is, one factor always comes into play: the budget. Landscaping and gardening are no exception. Fortunately, there are ways to keep these projects frugal, and sometimes FREE. Pray for Wisdom

First, and foremost, always pray for wisdom in the planning process, and for the resources needed. It’s amazing what God will do when we place our desires into His hands.

James 1:5 “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” Click

[... Click here to continue reading this post.]