Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow

Our water heater broke almost two weeks ago, and because of crazy work schedules and the fourth of July holiday, we weren’t able to get it fixed until yesterday afternoon.  All that said, it was a bit of a trick figuring out how to bathe and do dishes without any hot water in the house.  Continue reading

How To Keep Past Mistakes From Defining Your Future

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a flash of black.  My heart sank.  Not again!

As I turned my head to get a closer look, my suspicion was confirmed.

They were back…

With a sigh, I grabbed a wad of Kleenex from the bathroom and then set out to track down my uninvited little intruder.  I found him marching resolutely across our freshly painted dining room wall. Continue reading

Peace In Trying Times

As I have browsed online articles, and scrolled through my Facebook news-feed over the past few days, I couldn’t help but notice an overwhelming sense of fear, anxiety, frustration, anger and in some cases, hopelessness, reflected back at me.  Tensions are high right now.

Transitions are hard.  It’s especially hard, if you aren’t a fan of the changes unfolding around you.

As I was thinking about this, a scripture popped into my mind.  John 14:27 says, Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” Continue reading

Let Me Be A Woman…

The other day when I was looking online for some home décor items, I ran across a cute sign with the phrase: “Be the kind of woman who when your feet hit the floor each morning the Devil says, Oh Crap, She’s Up!”

I didn’t buy the sign, but the phrase has stuck with me.  I think it’s because it speaks to the heart of who I WANT to be.  Unfortunately, it’s not always the way that I actually live my life.  I can get derailed so easily.  Continue reading

Hope For The Hungry

Today is a special day!  It’s the first time I’ve ever hosted a guest writer on my personal blog.  I am so excited to introduce you to my friend, and fellow blogger, Karah Hawkinson. 

Hi!  I’m Karah from Food Shelf Friday.  Christy invited me to come here today and tell you a bit about the cause I’m passionate about, global hunger relief. Don’t tune me out yet!  I promise you the same thing I promise my readers – no guilt, no sad pictures, just hope and opportunity.

Here are some facts about hunger in the world today.  Nearly 10% of people don’t get enough to eat. 1 in 4 children is stunted physically or mentally by malnutrition.  21,000 people die each day from hunger and hunger-related illness, many of them children. A child dies from hunger or hunger-related illness every 10 seconds.  But I promised you hope, didn’t I?

There’s no denying that hunger is a big issue in the US and around the world, but there are also many wonderful organizations distributing food and clothing, digging wells, and providing employment and educational opportunities that will change the future of these families.  And you and your family can be part of that solution, even if you don’t have a lot of disposable income to give!

One thing my family practices is the Food Shelf Friday dinner . On Friday nights, we exchange our usual dinner for the kind of thing families get when they go to the food shelf for help.  We have pancakes and canned fruit, meatless spaghetti and canned vegetables, boxed dinners, canned soups, or rice and beans, and with the money we save, we give an identical meal to our local food shelf.

But if you’re going to start having Food Shelf Friday dinners, or if you’re contributing to one of the many holiday food drives this season, how do you know what your local food bank REALLY needs?  Generally speaking, the most useful item you can give a food bank is money.  They have buying power that the average grocery shopper can only dream of, so a financial donation goes a lot further than a food donation.  If you are going to donate food, the basic food bank needs are:

  • Canned fruits and/or veggies
  • Dry or canned beans
  • Rice and/or pasta
  • Breakfast cereal
  • Canned meats like tuna
  • Canned soup and/or chili
  • Pasta sauce in a plastic or aluminum containers
  • Dry dinner mixes (Hamburger Helper mac & cheese, etc.)

Keep in mind that food shelf users get a lot of sodium and preservatives in their diets, and they struggle to get adequate fiber and quality protein.  Low sodium foods, beans, brown rice and whole grains help fill these gaps.

Do NOT donate:

  • home canned foods
  • foods that need refrigeration
  • anything past its expiration date

In addition to Food Shelf Friday dinners, there are a lot of activities you can do to involve your whole family in helping the hungry.  I’ve posted about a number of ideas on my blog; here are some links:

Birthday Bags to provide birthday basics for a kid who can’t afford to celebrate

Blessings Bags so you always have something on hand when you encounter someone in need

Food Shelf Scavenger Hunt – a fun way to get kids involved in shopping for food bank basics

Thank you for helping the Hungry!

Karah

shopping-cart

 

What will you choose?

A few days ago, I was grocery shopping at Aldi with my 3-year-old daughter.  The store was busy as usual.  It was filled with men and women, elderly couples, and lots of young mothers with carts overflowing with groceries and little kids.  As I shopped, I found myself smiling and making casual conversation with a few of the other customers in the store.  (I just can’t seem to help myself… I’m an extrovert!)

When it was time to check-out, I ended up in line behind a mother with three little boys.  Her youngest was seated in the cart and trying desperately to “help” his mom.   Unfortunately, when things didn’t go quite how he hoped they would, he got upset.  As his frustration level rose, it appeared his mom’s anxiety level did as well.  Continue reading

An Open Letter To Christians Concerning American Politics

Dear Fellow American Christians,

Let me start out by saying, I have never written anything about politics. Quite honestly, I never thought that I would.  This has been very intentional.  You see, I don’t EVER want differences in political views/opinions to be a reason that someone gets turned away from the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Because, in my humble opinion, relationship with Jesus is the ONE thing that I think is worth putting my name/reputation on the line for.

Let me be the first to admit, that I haven’t always been a shining example of what a Christian should be.  I am so human (i.e. flawed).  But one thing I do know is that Jesus came to reconcile people like me (sinners) to God.  Continue reading