Tuesday, April 26, 2011

And we all fall down!

There is a story of a man that lived in a city. Every night as he walked throughout the city, he would yell "God is our Savior, He is the only way, repent!" It never failed. The sun would set and he would start walking and yelling, "God is our Savior. He is the only way, repent!". The older he would get, the louder his voice seemed to get. One night, a man leaned out the window to his house and asked, "Why do you say the same thing over and over again and every night? We already know that He is our Savior, and that He is the way and that we must repent. So why do you keep saying it?" The old man said, "I do not say these things to remind you, I say these things to remind me!"

We live in an age where the truth is being watered down or purposely forgotten for the sake of political correctness. There are schools in England that are dropping the Holocaust and the Crusades in their history classes because other people believe they did not exist. Any fact in history, whether it is popular or not, should be taught regardless of political views. There are things and facts about Christian history that I wish we could do away with because it paints Christians, and indirectly Jesus, in a negative light. But by ignoring the many mistakes of the Christian Church, we become vulnerable in making those exact same mistakes. One by one, person by person we must change the negative connotation of Christianity amongst unbelievers by being like Jesus, not fallible Christians.

So why is the old man such an important character in the story? Well because if we don't stand up for anything, we will fall for everything. The foundation that I try to raise my children and myself on, is God's Word which covers all aspects of my life. From not cheating on my taxes, to theft, to adultery; the ultimate law that I follow is what the Bible teaches. There are consequences if I don't follow man's law (which, by the way, doesn't include adultery) and there are consequences if I don't follow God's Word, and I am not solely talking about Hell! Every sin that God wants us to avoid hurts either us or those around us not always physically but so much more emotionally and spiritually. Yes! there is no law against adultery in the US, but tell that to the man who was betrayed. Yes! there is no law against sex before marriage, but tell that to the brokenhearted woman in an abortion clinic. Yes! there is no law against coveting, but tell that to a heart that is a shade closer to black. Yes! there is no law against lusting, but tell that to the man addicted to porn. Our convictions must rise higher than the standard of man's law. Our truth, must be resilient regardless of our feelings.

When I wonder why we are helping ungrateful people, why we feed others, why I listen to the same sob stories from the same women, I always go back to Jesus. I do it, because He did it and He asks me to and He would do it for me and HAS! There is no other reason to help anyone in a world that claims "survival of the fittest". On the contrary, its a "dog eat dog" world.

So keep reminding yourself to do what is right and to stick to the Biblical truth regardless if others do or do not. Be the REBEL! Remind yourself and others of what you believe and why you believe it, because if you don't, someone else will start thinking for you. And sooner or later, their silly little lie, starts sounding more like a truth.

You can view more "After Eden" comics here!

I am Being Featured on Wednesday!

Welcome to "Who in the World? Wednesday" Blog hop. Your host are Chronicles of a crazy mom, The Coupon Cutie and Mommy Does. Follow us if you like laughs and good deals :)  Don't forget to grab our button and share us, too, the more the merrier! 

Featured Host 4/27/11:

A little about Anna: 
First and foremost I am a Christian. By trying to be most like Jesus, I become the best wife, the best mother and the best ambassador for Him to those around me. I have been living in the beautiful city of Kuttawa in the gorgeous state of Kentucky for a short time now. I am married to a wonderful man that worships me just a little less than His Savior and loves me with all of his heart. I have two children. A not so little 8 year old boy and a sassy little 2 year old miss.
I lived in Texas all of my life, but recently have found myself in a new state, surrounded by super tall trees, colorful wild flowers, rolling hills and the some of the most hospitable people I have ever met. 

I am also an amateur writer/author. I hope to get my book published this year. My first book is titled "Uncomfortable Things" and is basically a week by week dare and is accompanied by scriptures, musings, insights and lots of room to write in. I am working on a second book that deals with the addiction to food and the sin of gluttony. I am also working on a fictional work about the war waged in Heaven, but that has been on hold for about 3 years now.

My blog is one that brings the warmth of a hearth to your home and spirit through musings, information, poetry and God's love. I hope you enjoy my writing, musings and blogs. Feel free to comment and follow. I always follow back.

In Jesus' love,


Visit Anna by clicking the #10 link below :)

Would you like to be a Featured Host?? Email me at 3crazykidsmom@gmail.com to let me know you are interested :) 
Chronicles of a crazy mom


In a place like our country, indulgences are a dime a dozen. So many things replace what is truly important so often that we become complacent or callused to the idea of having a problem with an addiction. I know that I feel I'm okay as long as I am not addicted to alcohol or drugs. I "pat myself on the back" congratulating my job well done, because I am not one of "those" people with true problems with addictions. But there are many types of addictions, just as there are people. In the book Feeding Your Appetites, Stephen Arterburn describes 8 basic God-given appetites that we can easily turn into slave masters (addictions).

Here are the 8:
1. Appetite for food
2. Appetite for sex
3. Appetite for authority and power
4. Appetite for pleasure
5. Appetite for work
6. Appetite for companionship
7. Appetite for fellowship with God
8. Appetite for gained wisdom

Mr. Arterburn gives a list of questions to ask yourself to evaluate yourself. Keep in mind that God DESIGNED us with these appetites and none of them are wrong if done in a healthy manner. These appetites were God-given and if balanced can lead to a very fulfilling and healthy life, but if they are unbalanced or out of God's plan, they can lead to a destructive lifestyle and end up hurting the ones we love and ourselves. Here are the questions to evaluate yourself:
1. What do you naturally have a strong appetite for?
2. How are you feeding that appetite?
3. Is what you are choosing satisfying and healthy for you? If not, what are you using to satisfy  yourself?
4. Follow your choices down the road they are leading you on. How far will you go down that other road to satisfy that appetite?

If this self-evaluation leads you to realize that your appetites are not being satisfied in healthy ways and are in fact controlling you, these next questions are for you:

1. Are you ready to give up your unhealthy appetites?
2. Are you willing to learn to fill your healthy appetites as God intended them to be filled?

The hardest part is admitting to oneself that there is a problem.  My problem is and continues to be food. I use food to comfort myself. I eat when I am bored, when I am hurt, when I am stressed and just because it's there. I love cooking and trying new cuisines, so it makes it very difficult to not eat my "creations". But I was looking at it all wrong. I shouldn't suppress my appetite for food, I should control it WITH the help of God. A strong will can only get you so far.

The book is a great help and I will be posting other parts of it to help in diverting our attention from our wants to our needs. If you took the self evaluating test and discovered that you have a uncontrolled appetite, I really recommend this book!

I have also included a free website that helps with food, pornography, gambling, alcohol, drugs and sex addictions. Here is the link.

The Apostle Paul: So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
                                                                                                                          ~ 1 Corinthians 10:12-13

Monday, April 25, 2011

No Fail Pancakes

These pancakes are so yummy that you don't have to put any maple syrup on them! You can if you'd like, but they are fluffy and oh so sweet! I usually just put a sunny side up egg on top and eat it just like that! And sometimes the kids eat these without syrup!

Here is the recipe:
1 Cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
3/4 tablespoon of cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon of vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 Cup of buttermilk (if you do not have buttermilk you can do 1 Cup of normal milk and add 1/2 tablespoon of vinegar, just let the mixture sit for about 5 minutes)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted ( I didn't have butter - oops - so I substituted the butter for 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil!)
1 large egg

Get a medium bowl and whisk all dry ingredients. Then get a 2 cup measuring cup and add milk and butter or oil and mix. Add the milk mixture to dry ingredients and then add egg. Mix until just blended. Do not over mix the batter. Heat your skillet. While skillet is being heated you will start to notice your batter getting little air bubbles. That's just perfect! Brush your griddle with a non-stick spray or some vegetable oil and pour batter on griddle about 1/3 cup at a time. When surface of pancake starts to bubble, flip the pancake and cook until remaining side is browned. ENJOY!

Yields 7 5in. pancakes!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Pomegranate

I just love pomegranates! I love their color, their smell, their juiciness. They endure some of the driest climates and exemplify both beauty and toughness.

Well something that I just found out about one of my favorite fruits is that on average it contains 613 seeds. What is so meaningful about this number? Well 613 is the number of mitzveh (commandments) that Jews follow!

Just some bit of information I learned that I thought I would pass on!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Most Beautiful Thing

The tears that flowed and the sweat that bled
There was nothing beautiful to be found
An unanswered prayer and friends that fled
No one defended Him, no one made a sound.

The sting of betrayal and the slow walk to trial
There was nothing beautiful about that kiss
The stares of the religious and the spit of the vile
While fists beat him and nobody missed.

A restless night in a cell for the damned
There was nothing beautiful about that place
Sleepless, and the echo of a door slammed
A guilty and violent man He replaced.

The lashes of a whip and the pain of flesh flogged
There was nothing beautiful there
The mock of the Romans and the chant of a mob
How much more could this man bear?

The weight of a cross that on Calvary stood
There was nothing beautiful about this tree
The sting of a nail driving through flesh and wood
There was something beautiful that He could see.

The sin of the world on the shoulders of God's son
There is nothing beautiful about sin
He gave up His Spirit and now it is done
What was once ugly is now beautiful to Him

Jesus became sin, the ugliest thing for God to see
Because the ugliest thing was you and me
Through His blood that ran down that tree
The most beautiful thing He saw was you and me

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Same Kind of Different as Me - Book Review

"It begins outside a burning plantation hut in Louisiana... and an East Texas honky-tonk... and, without a doubt, in the heart of God. It unfolds in a
Hollywood hacienda... an upscale New York Gallery... a downtown dumpster... a Texas ranch.
Gritty with pain and betrayal and brutality, it also shines with an unexpected, life-changing love."

"A modern day slave, an international art dealer, and the unlikely woman who bound them together."

This book was introduced to me by my pastor's wife. I was a bit hesitant to read it because I enjoy reading books that are a bit more theological. True stories or biographies don't really sit high in my favorite genres to read, but I am so grateful that I read it anyway. I read this book in less than a week!

In the book we get to know Denver Moore and Ron Hall and Miss Debbie. Denver is a man who grew up abused by what was then called share-cropping. A business where the down and out are taken advantage of by rich, usually white, men. After a life of atrocious living conditions and grueling hard work, Denver hitches a train ride to Ft. Worth where he lives a life of a homeless man, scratching his way through life in order to stay alive. Ron Hall on the other hand, grows up working hard and later ends up art dealing. He finds that he has a talent for the trade and invests a whole lot of money and time living the American dream. His wife Debbie finds her true calling to help the down and out, the homeless, the broken and the purposely forgotten. Through her and her trials, Denver and Ron become more than just friends, they become brothers. Jesus is their commonality and they cling to Him through the good times and the bad. 

Throughout the book there is sprinkled Denver's country wisdom and Biblical insights. There is love, lots of pain and glorious victory in these pages and it really inspired me to love unconditionally, just like Jesus loves me despite my shortcomings.    

The book is written in a two person account setting. Denver speaks about his life, and Ron speaks on his. We get insight and perspectives from both of them. When Denver speaks the words are written phonetically with his "accent". This draws you closer into the book and you can almost hear Denver speaking to you through these words.

Warning: The book is a tear jerker and does give you a glimpse of the brutality of racism. There is a graphic scene of what some white men did to Denver. There are several times that  Denver uses the word "nigger" both as a horrible word used towards him and as part of his "vernacular". Ron uses the word, but not as him saying it, but more of his hearing of it. There are several drug references, nothing explicit though. A woman is also burned to death by a horrible accident and there is one reference to witchcraft or voodoo.

Rating: I give the book 5 out of 5 stars. There are so many wonderful quotes Denver uses and his insight and sensitivity to the work of Holy Spirit is a breath of fresh air. I honestly hope they make a movie out of this book. 

God tends to be found in unexpected places!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Precious to God

Those precious to God become important to Satan. ~ Denver Moore in "Same Kind of Different as Me"

I found this quote in a book about a homeless man and an art dealer meeting and becoming more than just friends, they become family. Denver's words, full of wisdom, give a dire warning to any that chooses to truly follow Jesus. For those that become popular with Him, also become popular to Satan and his legions . This may makes us second guess our loyalty. But at Matthew 10:38 states: Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. What true and strong words spoken by our Savior. He wants all of us and in return He gives us all of Him. We can only offer our measly and broken selves, but He offers a perfect and supreme Being. We offer a feeble sacrifice, He offers a perfect and holy sacrifice. 

In Ephesians 6:10-17 it says: Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,  and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Paul provides us a list of the armor God gives us, but as a soldier must keep his gear clean and ready, so must we. Evil will come to us as Christians, sometimes disguised in beauty or in light, and we must be ready.

How to be ready:
1. Belt of Truth - Stop lying to yourself. Of course you shouldn't lie to others, but lying to ourselves is more subtle and acting subtly is the Devil's favorite war approach. What does that mean? What sin is recurring in your life? Face it and deal with it. Whether it be lust, pornography, gluttony, pride, greed, cussing, anger, addiction to anything; give it to God. These sins weaken you and in those weaknesses, Satan attacks most ferociously. What takes up most of your time? If it is TV, facebook, the internet, work, cleaning then get your priorities straightened out.

2. Breastplate of Righteousness - Righteousness has everything to do with external behavior and the condition of your heart. It has to do with actions and the heart of your actions. How do you behave around Christians and non-Christians? Are you compassionate? What kind of language do you use? What kind of movies do you see? What kind of thoughts stir in your mind? All these are questions to ask yourself to find out your righteousness. In James 5:16b it says: The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. And Proverbs 15:29 it says: The Lord is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous. The breastplate covers all the vital organs, and prayer cannot cover you if you are not being heard.

3. Feet fitted with the peace of the Gospel - If your feet are shaky, you cannot stand. If there is no peace in your feet, you will fall. Worry and fear can gnaw at your spiritual feet and make you less sturdy. They will make you hesitate when it is time to act. The most important thing for a foot soldier was to keep his feet dry and healthy, because if he "lost" his feet, he lost his mobility and ultimately his effectiveness. Stand firm on God's peace and be ready. In Philippians 4:7 it says: And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

4.  Shield of Faith - When the arrows of attack come, it is your faith that protects you. When the troubles and tribulations come, it is your faith that keeps the enemy from hurting you. Your shield must be big and sturdy and lack any holes or tears. If there are holes or tears, rest assured that is where Satan will attack. What helps tremendously is to remember what God already has done for you. Remember what God did for you in times past. Remember the miracles that have been worked in your life already and know that He will not abandon you now. Write down verses and have them ready that have given you strength. If He got you out of the mire before, He will do so again.

5. Helmet of Salvation - Doubting your salvation and your worthiness is a tactic Satan uses to keep you sedentary. If you doubt your salvation you will not fight any fight. If you doubt your worthiness, you have already lost so why even continue to do His work? If you don't know you're saved, ask Jesus to enter your life and believe in Him. Believe that He loves you and ask for forgiveness of your sins. If you have to do that everyday, do it! Jesus died on the cross for you and took your place on the cross, that instead of God seeing a sinner, He sees a ready saint! Quit doubting your salvation and do something for Him. No one is an atheist in the foxhole!

6. Sword of the Spirit - This is our weapon. Everything else that is given to us is primarily used as a source of protection, but the sword is an offensive weapon. Memorize scripture when combating against sin or spiritual afflictions. Know that there is no other truth except God's word. Many have tried to prove that it is false, but all have fallen short. Lean on its wisdom, on its power and on its light. Read your Bible everyday, it doesn't matter what, just read it!

Those who are precious to Him, are important to Satan. Don't go against Satan without being prepared.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana

I found this recipe in a book my dad gave me a long time ago. The book is called: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur. I just love this soup! There were some different things that I substituted to save money and the soup was still deliciously fabulous. Instead of using heavy cream, I used half and half. I used Walmart brand chicken broth and I didn't use red pepper flakes, but a seasoning of garlic and herbs that I think has some kick to it that I found in my spice cabinet. I also added the garlic part, so if you want to go completely like the recipe at Olive Garden, then skip the garlic. But adding a bit of garlic to any dish isn't going to hurt anyone - well maybe dessert! Total price of everything was way cheaper than it would have been if we had gone out to Olive Garden. Super easy to make and super yummy!

2 3/4 Cups of Chicken Stock or Broth
1/4    Cup of heavy Cream
1       Medium russet potato
2       Cups of chopped kale
1/2    Pound spicy Italian sausage
1        Garlic clove (minced)
1/4    tsp salt
1/4    tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1. Combine the stock and cream in a saucepan over medium heat.
2. Slice the potato into 1/4-inch slices, then quarter the slices and add to the soup (I removed the peel, you can leave the peel if you would like an earthier taste)
3. Add the kale (it is best not to use the rib on the kale. A rough chop will do. The kale withers with the hot soup.
4. Saute the garlic for 1 minute and then add the sausage. Cook completely and then add to the soup.
5. Add the spices and let the soup simmer for about 2 hours. Stir occasionally.

Yield: 2 Servings or 4 Appetizers

Hope you enjoy. We loved it!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Twice Baked Potatoes w/ Kentucky Wild Chives

Everywhere, in the beautiful town of Kuttawa, there are chives growing wild. These little clusters of chives are sprinkled throughout the hills of Kentucky. So I wanted to cook something up using these yummy chives. I found a recipe in "Taste of Home: Mom's Best Made Easy." I tweaked this recipe quiet a bit, by adding mayo, regular mustard instead of Dijon, and replacing the green onions for the chives. I also didn't use bacon bits. I messed up one potato while I was shelling out the potato pulp so I just saved the rest that couldn't fit in and ate it as mashed potatoes. But this was a very yummy side that our family REALLY enjoyed!


2 Baking Potatoes
1/8 Cup of Milk (more if you like a smoother texture)
4 TBSP of Butter or Margarine
1 TBSP of Yellow Mustard or a little less to taste
2 TBSP of Mayonaise
1/2 Cup of Shredded Cheddar (mild)
8 Sprigs of Chive chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste

Options: Add any left over meats like shrimp, bacon bits or steak tips. Add a dash of paprika to make these potatoes "deviled". You can also add a kick to this recipe by adding some Ranch dressing!

Instead of baking the potatoes in the oven to soften them up, to speed up the process you can microwave them. Just pierce the potato a couple of times with a fork, place them in a microwave proof plate, and set the microwave to 7-10 minutes, depending on the size of the potato and the power of your microwave. Once the potatoes have been cook, let them stand for about 5 minutes so they can cool off. Be careful, the plate is also very hot. Also make sure that the potatoes are soften all the way. I messed up on a larger potato because it didn't cook all the way and when I tried to scoop out the inside, the outer shell broke on me. 

Once the potato is cooled off, take a knife and cut a thin slice off the top of the potato. Discard. Get a spoon and then shell out the inside of the potato. Be careful not to break the outer skin. Try to get as close as you can to the skin, but not too close that it makes the outside flimsy. Place all of the inside of the potatoes in a medium bowl and mash with milk and butter. Salt and Pepper it to taste. Stir in mustard, mayonnaise, cheese and chives. Spoon into potato shells. Return the potatoes (now stuffed) to the microwave safe plate. Sprinkle extra cheese on top. Microwave, uncovered for 1-2 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Yield: 2 servings

It was so fun having Nathan go get the chives from outside. I have an endless supply of chives! I wonder what else I can cook with them?!