She Speaks 2014 Conference

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July 24-26, 2014 Concord, NC

I’m ramping up for the AMAZING & DYNAMIC She Speaks Conference next week! We’ll be equipping speakers and writers!

Registration is now full! Sign up for the wait list here.

Receive the tools and the confidence you
need to answer God’s call on your life

Connect with Industry + Ministry Experts

Get trained by writing, speaking and leadership experts who have walked through the trenches and can share from personal experiences.

Receive Personal Feedback

Receive personal attention and practical tips on your writing and speaking. Our coaches and peer critique groups will give you encouragement and feedback to take your skills to the next level.

Build Your Platform

Learn about the latest tools and trends to expand your reach and increase engagement with your audience.

Get a Publisher Appointment

Pitch your book proposal in a one-on-one meeting with the industry’s top publishers. Appointments are made on a first-come, first-served basis, so register today.

Customize Your Conference Schedule

Tailor your breakout sessions based on your experience, goals and preferences.

Pre-Conference Jump Start

Get a jump on connecting, training and inspiration with a bonus day of teaching.

Teaching Staff

CHALLENGE. INFORM. INSPIRE.

Lysa TerKeurst

LYSA
TerKeurst

Glynnis Whitwer

GLYNNIS
Whitwer

KarenEhman

KAREN
Ehman

Renee Swope

RENEE
Swope

JerryJenkins

JERRY
Jenkins

Shaunti Feldhan

SHAUNTI
Feldhahn

Emily Freeman

EMILY
Freeman

Michelle Cushatt

MICHELE
Cushatt

Andrea Doering

ANDREA
Doering

LisaAllen

LISA
Allen

WendyBlight

WENDY
Blight

Shari Braendel

SHARI
Braendel

MiccaC

MICCA
Campbell

WhitneyC

WHITNEY
Capps

AmyCarroll

AMY
Carroll

LynnCowell

LYNN
Cowell

Blythe Daniel

BLYTHE
Daniel

CourtneyDeFeo

COURTNEY
DeFeo

Tamara

TAMARA
Dever

TomDever

TOM
Dever

Michele Dudley

MICHELE
Dudley

Suzie

SUZIE
Eller

Esther

ESTHER
Fedorkevich

SharonGlasgow

SHARON
Glasgow

AJGregory

AJ
Gregory

KathleenKerr

KATHLEEN
Kerr

NickiKoziarz

NICKI
Koziarz

Tracie Miles

JENNIFER
Lyell

Tracie Miles

TRACIE
Miles

WendyPope

WENDY
Pope

Stephanie Raquel

STEPHANIE
Raquel

RuthSoukup

RUTH
Soukup

Teri Lynne Underwood

TERI LYNNE
Underwood

The She Speaks conference was founded by Proverbs 31 Ministries’ president, Lysa TerKeurst. Lysa is also the founder of COMPEL Training, New York Times best-selling author and speaker who helps everyday women live an adventure of faith through following Jesus Christ.
 Build a dynamite schedule

She Speaks offers a wide variety of breakout sessions covering writing, speaking and leadership that range from beginner to advanced. Attendees are able to build a custom schedule by selecting breakout sessions from any area, based on personal interest.

PRE-CONFERENCE ($150)

Thursday, July 24

CONFERENCE
($650)

Friday — Saturday, July 25-26

WhenTrials Hit Every Area of Your Life

Sunset after the rain last night

Sunset after the rain last night

Are trials literally hitting every  area of your life?

Often when we suffer, it’s the life of our self-nature that causes us pain. When we are dead, we don’t suffer. If we were completely dead to our old nature we would no longer feel many of the pains that bother us . . .

God prepares a cross for us that must be embraced without thought of self-preservation. The cross is painful . . . The hardest thing about suffering is not knowing how great it will be or how long it will last. So often we want to set limits on our suffering.

We can’t reject the full work of the cross within us. If we do, we are forced to go over the same ground again and again. Worse yet, we will suffer much, but the suffering be for no purpose.

Lord help me never fall into the state in which the cross is not at work within me!

God most often doesn’t transform us on a bed of light, life, and grace. His transformation is usually done on the cross in darkness, poverty, and death. He uses disappointments and failures of our life to take our trust away from self and help us put our trust in Him.  It is like being burned in a slow fire.  Wouldn’t we  rather be burned up in a blaze of glory? Aw but a fast burn wouldn’t detach us from ourselves and others.

We must endure the painful process. There is much more at work here than instant maturity. Through the process we will die to self and through relying on Christ and not-self we gain immeasurable faith, love, and trust in Him.

Paraphrased excerpts from the book, 100 Days in the Secret Place-Gene Edwards.

He’s the only answer we need in middle of the trial. We MUST have alone time with Him everyday- no matter what. Forget the pile of dishes, weeds in the garden, social media or watching a movie.  Lets run to Him and sit in His presence.  That’s where I’m headed right now!  Lord, I don’t want to have to keep going through the same trial because I wouldn’t surrender all!

“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed– always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you . . . Therefore do not lose heart. even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. for our light afflictions, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal wight of eternal glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”II Corinthians 4: 7-18

Tips for Traveling Cheap

Forth of July Picnic

Forth of July Picnic

We traveled 3000 miles in three days on $300.  It was an ADVENTURE!  Jennifer and I traveled from Virginia to L.A., CA.

I love a good challenge, don’t you?  Where do you want to go or need to go this summer? Does it seem impossible?  Then do it!

I’ve got my master’s degree in pinching pennies after raising five daughters. On top of raising them, we sent all five to college and have married four of them, so far.  Many days there’ve been no pennies to pinch.   So, we’ve had to work harder.

Several years ago Jennifer got an internship in L.A., CA.  She needed to get there with all her belongings- on the least amount of money possible.  We looked at the three big budget needs of travel: Mode of transportation, food, and lodging. We calculated every mode of travel meticulously- plus shipping her belongings. Every way we sliced it, we came up with car travel being the cheapest.

This is how we traveled 3000 miles on $300 in three days:

~Our VW Bug could go 45 miles to a gallon on the highway. We needed approximately 66 gallons of gas for 3000 miles. We mapped out the cheapest places to get gas and drove wisely on the highway.  We didn’t carry heavy luggage or coolers that would add drag to the fuel consumption.  We made the whole trip on $220 in gas.

~We calculated that we would need three nights of lodging.  We asked friends in TN (Micca Campbell) and OK (Tammy Dennis) if we could stay overnight with them on our journey. We made WONDERFUL memories with them.  Our last night we stayed at the cheapest hotel (THIS IS NOT RECOMMENDED). It was definitely a memory which could be a post all on its own.

~We brought ALL of our own food. Loaves of organic bread, peanut butter, jelly, bananas, apples, boiled eggs and water.  Not once did we buy fast food.  Not once did we visit a convenience or grocery store and not once did we sit down in a restaurant. Not once did we buy a bottled water.  We filled up jars with water at home and refilled along the journey.

Traveling is expensive, if you aren’t careful.  In I Corinthians 4:2 We are told that, “it is required in stewards that one be found faithful.” I want to have been found faithful with all the Lord provides for our family.

It’s a holiday weekend.  Yay!  Dale and I traveled to the beach to be with our children and grandchildren.  For the trip, I packed a picnic lunch.  I  poured chili in the bottom of mason jars, poured homemade corn bread batter on top of that and topped with shredded cheddar cheese.  I then baked the jars in the oven on 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Let the jars cool before putting tops on.

To add live enzymes to our meal, I included my Cucumber Salad and watermelon stars.  I filled mason jars with water for drinking and added organic chips to the basket! YUM!

You can also make my Chicken& Dumpling cobbler in mason jars.  Where do you plan to go this summer or where do you wish you could go? I would love to hear what food you bring on trips to save money!

Don’t Leave an Open Door for Your Enemy

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I thought I was all alone but there were noises coming from the cellar.  I was too afraid to open the door. . . so I didn’t. I continued to type and then from the corner of my eye, I saw something move.  I gulped and bravely looked to see him staring at me from the cellar door.

Fear grabbed me and then I ran outside and screamed for Dale. The six-foot snake still hung from the top of the door staring at me.  The tip of its tail clung firmly to the top for security. Bare handedly Dale grabbed the snake with both hands.  The snake was holding on for dear life!  He firmly pulled him off the door.  Its head stood straight up and body seemed bigger than life as Dale juggled his weight toward the front door.  All along I watched from my standing position on the table top.  Dale looked at me as if to wonder if I was just going to stand there or help him. He said, “I NEED YOU TO OPEN THE DOOR!”  Then, he flung the snake out into the grass.

I gathered myself and sat back down to work.  My daughter came into the kitchen a few minutes later and calmly pointed at the same door and said, “Mom, there’s another one.” I gulped and turned to see the second huge snake staring right at me.

This one was determined not to get caught.  He slithered behind the large freezer.  Us girls were undone with adrenaline and disgust.  Dale told us to get a grip and help him.  The third snake appeared…

We all took a deep breath after the third snake was caught and sighed in relief, believing that it was all over.  It was getting late, Ellie (16 yrs old)and I were washing dishes together and she made a proclamation, “I will never, ever sleep in this home again. I’m moving in with Becca.  They don’t have snakes!” As I handed her the rinsed plate to be dried off, I assured her that there were no more snakes and that she would not move in with her friend Becca.

Calmly she said,”Mom, there’s one coming from the cellar door right now.” I  said, “Ellie, don’t be silly.” I turned just to make sure she was kidding but she was right!  Number five and six came last and we’ve never seen another snake in the house since.  Ellie never moved in with Becca.

We’ve lived in our house for twenty years and never had a snake before that or after.  Dale had left the crawl space door under the house open in the fall and forgot to close it. The snakes saw it as a welcome sign for winter dwelling and took up residence. Winter was over and they were looking for their way out…

That night as I laid in bed, the verse from Ephesians 4 came to mind, “Don’t give Satan a foothold.” What’s a foothold? An open door to be invited in.  Satan looks for open doors of opportunity- footholds into our life.  We open doors to him when we have un-forgiveness, anger, fear or we constantly dwell on conflict we have with others. . . (just to name a few ways he slithers his way in).

We don’t even realize he’s gotten a foothold sometimes until  fear or anxiety stare us in the eye and say “here I am, now what are you gonna do about it?”  We can choose to ignore it, be too afraid to face it- or engage in the battle that will define our life.  I don’t know about you but I don’t want to live with snakes in my home.

It’s MY home and God has not given me the spirit of fear; but of power, and love, and of sound mind.  Negligence in this battle is costly.  Imagine what my house would be like if I didn’t get rid of the snakes or left the door open all year long.  I wouldn’t want to live here!

If Jesus is Lord of our life, than we have the weapon we need.  The Word of God will defend us!  We need to read it, believe it, and live it.  Jesus promises to help us!  Ask the Lord to reveal any open doors in your life that have allowed the enemy to have a foothold. Clean your house and shut the door to snakes!

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” I Peter 5:8

Take up the sword of the Lord which is the Word of God and rebuke the enemy with TRUTH!

“Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” James 4:7

Happily Ever After

The Princess and Prince united in Holy Matrimony

The Princess and Prince united in Holy Matrimony-June 7, 2014

The wedding was glorious!  True love took center stage in the old country church.  Their purity combined with their passion- exploded our hearts with joy and peace.  It’s a breathtaking wonder for a couple madly in love to wait for their wedding day, to partake of all the pleasures God has for them.

I sat directly in front of Jennifer and Alex and wondered if angels filled the place and all of heaven as they watched them pronounce their sacred vows.  I could sense God’s pleasure coursing through every word and gesture.  When two combine as one in they way that He intended, it is an awesome wonder.

The possibilities of a Happily Ever After marriage are endless now. . .

True love becomes drunk with passion when Christ and unselfish love unite as one.

Thank You Lord for allowing Dale and I (your humble servants) the honor of raising your princess. You are worthy of all praise and honor!  You are the King of Kings.  You are the most High GOD.  The Great I AM!

 

The cake was lowered from the ceiling for the unveiling!

The cake was lowered from the ceiling for the unveiling while music played and all eyes watched! It was a  real life fairy- tale wedding and reception!

The humble servants of the Most High God are still cleaning up from all the festivities!I’ll be sharing all the wedding and reception photo’s in a couple weeks! Thank you for praying for us!

Servants of the Most High Preparing for Wedding

The Prince and Princess will marry this weekend! The servants of the most high are BUSY preparing for the wedding.

The Prince and Princess will marry this weekend! The servants of the most high are BUSY preparing for the wedding.

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The turkey’s have made themselves at home, leaving unmentionables on my clean porch. I’m mowing, Dale’s creating and the Prince and Princess are working tirelessly. Would you pray for us? That all the details go flawlessly and that every person who attends be overwhelmed with the glory of the Lord in middle of all the festivities.

Thank You Lord. You amaze me…

If any of you missed the Princes Proposal to the Princess click here.

Rerouting Wrong Thoughts-OUT

Our newest family members on The Glasgow Farm

Our newest family members on The Glasgow Farm

The screaming and fighting in the back seat was brutal!  It was a fight to the death.  As I slung my arms toward the back seat, the car swerved off the road.  Semi trucks were passing me, going 80 miles an hour. I pulled over to stop the fight.  I’m sure people thought I was mercilessly beating my children when they saw my arms flailing.

Yesterday I drove the beautiful Appalachian Mountains and picked up our newest family members- a Royal Palm Turkey and a Red Bourbon Turkey.  They were not happy about being confined to a vehicle, nor being confined next to each other.  Hence, it was a fight to the death in my back seat.  The Red Bourbon decided to cure his displeasure with lashing out in anger.  He decided to kill the Royal Palm, literally.  He hopped on top of him and went for the neck!

I called 911 (Dale).  He said, “Reroute their thinking.  Turkeys aren’t the smartest and they’re thinking gets stuck.  You’ve got to reroute it.  Scream and hit the cage.”  I screamed, hit the cage and they stopped for 10 minutes.  It started again.  I screamed, hit the cage and clapped my hands.  It stopped.  30 minutes later the fight started again.  I screamed, hit the cage and clapped my hands.  It finally stopped for good. We all made it home alive and now they’re best friends.

I could sense the Lord say to my heart this is no different from people. When our circumstances aren’t what we want, our thinking gets stuck on the negative.  If we get stuck on the negative, we react wrong. We’ve got to be aware that negative thoughts can destroy and learn how to re-route them- OUT.

Every time a negative thought repeats in our mind over the course of a day, we should be reminded of the turkey’s lesson.

“For the weapons of our warfare  are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,.” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

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The Royal Palm Turkey- He’ll be stunning when his tail feathers come back in

“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—mediate on these things. “Philippians 4:8

Life’s Path Filled with Flowers and Poison Ivy

White wild flowers and poison ivy on my path

White wild flowers and poison ivy on my path

Hundreds of white wild flowers caught me by surprise. I didn’t plant them, but they were everywhere. I sat down so that I could drink in all of the God-given beauty. I was so entranced with the beauty that I almost  didn’t see the poison ivy, everywhere! How dare poison ivy take root on my private path, the one I nurture and keep sacred!!

Then I sensed the Lord nudge my heart, this is just like the path of life. The good and bad come along the same path at the same time. How you handle both, will bring you great reward.

But, I don’t want the bad, Lord. The message ran deep into my heart.

I haven’t stopped thinking about what He spoke to me since.

Lord, when I meet You on that glorious day, I want to have been found faithful in all things. Help me Jesus!

I Peter 1: 6-8

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it be tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory.”

Hebrews 10:35-38

“Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise: For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has not pleasure in him.”
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Faith that Moves Mountain’s

IMG_0006Last weekend I spoke in Odessa, TX and Fort Payne, AL. Today I’m headed for Salt Lake City,Utah for a Women’s Aglow retreat. The theme of the weekend is, FAITH that MOVES MOUNTAINS!! “I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. ” Matt.17:20

This is going to be a POWERFUL weekend!! Anyone in Utah or near it want to come?

Made some Paleo banana muffins for Dale to eat while I’m gone!

Paleo Banana Bread (Gluten Free)

6 eggs, beaten

1/3 cup coconut milk

1/4 cup raw honey

1 tsp vanilla

8 tablespoons butter, melted

3/4 cup coconut flour

1/2 cup almond flour

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp celtic sea salt

1 cup ripe banana’s

Preheat oven to 350. Stir all ingredients together and pour into loaf pan or muffin pan. Bake for 40-55 min for loaf and 20 min’s or more for muffins. I added chopped walnuts to mine! Enjoy!

 

A Proverbs 31 Woman Provides Food for her Family

Vinegar in waiting for the chive blossoms

Vinegar in waiting for the chive blossoms

 

Proverbs 31: 10-31

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.

 She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.

 She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands.

She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar.

 She gets up while it is still night;

she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.

She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.

She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.

 She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night.

In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.

She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.

When it snows, she has no fear for her household;  for all of them are clothed in scarlet.

She makes coverings for her bed;  she is clothed in fine linen and purple.

Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.

She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.

 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

 She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.

She watches over the affairs of her household  and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:

 “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.”

 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.

Honor her for all that her hands have done,and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

A Proverbs 31 woman provides food for her household. She plans in advance and works for the good of her home.

Chives grow like weeds, the blossoms only bloom in the spring but then you have chives all summer, fall and  winter.
Chive blossoms make beautiful flower arrangements, taste delicious chopped in salads or steeped in vinegar and supply us with vitamin C. Blossoms steeped in vinegar for a week or two give a gentle taste of onion with a beautiful pink color.

Gently wash organic chive blossoms to remove dirt and bugs. Let dry. Pour your favorite vinegar into a jar, then add chive blossoms. Let steep for a week or two in cool dark place. Wha-la- Chive blossom vinegar!Use in homemade salad dressings, serve salads with oil and chive vinegar on side, sprinkle over fried fish, sautéed kale or dandelion greens. . .!photo

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Add cleaned chopped chive blossoms to your favorite vinegar and steep in cool dark place for a week or two

Add cleaned chopped chive blossoms to your favorite vinegar and steep in cool dark place for a week or two

Winner from last weeks drawing is Kelly Wolff!  Please contact me about getting your gift! 

Raising Strong Willed Children

If you are joining me from Proverbs 31′s devotion, Losing The Battle is Not an Option- welcome!

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as fronts between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:5-9

Watch video of our five daughters talking about discipline

High Calling of Motherhood

We need each others prayers. What can I pray for you today for your child? Your comment will enter your name in the drawing to win $50 of your choice of resources from Proverbs 31 Bookstore.

Use your gift certificate to get this necklace or books!

Use your gift certificate to get this necklace or books!

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Pray without Ceasing

My favorite fragrance- Lilac-it's breathtaking!      I Thessalonians 5

My favorite fragrance- Lilac-it’s breathtaking!
This morning reading in I Thessalonians 5

Winner from last weeks drawing is Lauren who posted 2014/04/18 at 1:28 PM! Email me!

“Pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” I Thessalonians 5:17-18

Let’s pray without ceasing for our friends and family who don’t know Jesus or who have left Him. Let’s pray in faith and give thanks!

“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

AMEN!

I’m making fried dandelion blossoms for dinner! Healthy and YUMMY!

Preparing for Soaring Food Prices

Spaghetti Squash Seedlings

Spaghetti Squash Seedlings

California is experiencing the worst drought in history. They supply America with more vegetables than any other state. 11 States have been declared disaster areas because of the dry conditions. This should sound an alarm to pray and prepare. Pray for  families who will be out of work, family businesses that will close, ones who can’t afford  escalating costs of food…and prepare by planting gardens.

We can grow our own gardens to help offset soaring prices of food for our families and those we know in need. I planted seeds indoors this past weekend for a spring garden. I’ll plant my summer seeds indoors in a couple of weeks.  Just tonight we ate Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai. The squash was as fresh as when we picked it out of our garden seven months ago. It’s rewarding to grow your own produce and enjoy it all year. Even though this has been a harsh winter my kale is still growing- amazing. It is being said by public officials that this drought could have cataclysmic impact on food prices.

The California Farm Water Coalition said that the hardest hit crops will be tomatoes, broccoli, lettuce, cantaloupes, garlic, peppers and corn. Many other foods will be affected but these are at the top. Purchase some organic tomato seeds now and  plant  in the next week indoors. Plant transplants after danger of frost (when will that be this year?).

Proverbs 31:25 “Strength and honor are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.” KJV

The kale hasn't minded the snow this year or sub zero temperatures

The kale hasn’t minded the snow this year or sub-zero temperatures

Spaghetti squash from our summer garden

Spaghetti squash from our summer garden

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Storage of Winter Vegetables

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai recipe

 

 

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

1 spaghetti squash (slice open and bake for 40-45 minutes in 375 degree oven)

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/2 onion, chopped

1/3 cup mushrooms, sliced

2 carrots, peeled and diced

1/2 cup baby organic corn- I usually use zucchini instead of corn.

scallions or chives to taste

15 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 chicken breast, sliced thin and chopped

parsley to taste

2 organic eggs, beaten

olive oil, coconut oil or sesame oil

3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar- add when finished

salt to taste

Sauté all vegetables in couple tablespoons oil for 5 min’s on med high. I usually cook the onions, garlic and carrots first then add the others. Don’t over cook them.  Add shrimp and chicken, sauté for an additional 5-7 minutes. Add beaten eggs and cook on medium high until done-fast. Don’t over cook. Scrape the spaghetti squash out and into the skillet of vegetables. Stir all well. Add oil when the pan looks dry, go easy. Turn heat off. Put heaping helping on each plate, top with sliced avocado and scallions or chives.

You can substitute any vegetable you have for the one’s suggested. You can also omit the eggs if you want. Sesame oil gives a more distinctive flavor.

Blessed is He Who is Not Offended by Me

LampIf you are visiting me today from Proverbs 31 Encouragement Today Devotions, welcome!

John the Baptist was a burning and shining lamp; inwardly burning with love and zeal, outwardly shining in all holiness.

~Jesus said, “Among those born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist.”

~ The angel told his father, Zacharias, that he would be filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb and that he would go in the spirit and power of Elijah.

~The Holy Spirit revealed to John the Baptist that the One whom He descended upon would be the Messiah.  John witnessed this with his own eyes at Jesus’ baptism. (John 1:32-34)

Yet, when Herod imprisoned him in the awful, putrid dungeon for days upon end with no relief, we read in Luke 7:18-28 that John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus if He was indeed the Coming One or if they should look for another?  Can you imagine?… Oh my goodness, I can’t!  John the Baptizer, who was called the forerunner to Jesus, who was filled from the womb with the Holy Spirit, the burning and shining lamp- falling prey to doubt and despair!!

To answer John’s questions… Jesus told his disciples, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

John’s entire life was lived to foretell the coming of the Messiah.  And he lived his calling to the fullest.  He lived his life as a burning and shining lamp…  But his current circumstances made him tremble.  I LOVE what he did!  When in doubt- he sought Truth.  Truth always frees us.  You can imprison a body but not the spirit. As long as we know the truth- the truth will set us free.

Jesus says to us all, “Blessed is he who is not offended” when circumstances are hard and answers are not in sight.  He loves us.  He loved John the Baptist.  Many times we’ll never know the answers to why things happen.

John the Baptist lives on as a memorial and example for other burning and shining lamps- to seek Truth when circumstances make us doubt.

How we respond in those times are of the highest importance to God.  He watches to see whether in our darkest hour, if we will respond to Him who is invisible- more than to the visible around us.  For faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.  Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward!  For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise!

When a trial comes, confront it with truth like John the Baptist did and it will free you. When this life is over we want Jesus to say that we were a burning and shining lamp; inwardly burning with love and zeal and outwardly shining in all holiness-who sought TRUTH at all cost.

Here are a few things I do when I’m faced with a trial:

    Trial+Truth= Triumph

  1. Pray and believe that you will be triumphant. “ I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.(Phil 4:13)And yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loves us.”(Romans 8:37) Declare these truths with determination and confidence as you petition the Lord!
  2. Quickly access your dilemma. Is it life threatening physically or spiritually? If the answer is no, then take a deep breath and say, thank you Lord. You can do this, even if it’s brutal! If it is life threatening you can do it to- it’ll take more prayer!
  3. Focus on one problem at a time. Example: Our daughter was scheduled to have her tonsils taken out at the same time our car was broken down through vandalism. We got a call from the hospital on the same day that the glass company called to say the car windows kept coming in broken. The hospital said that our insurance company had decided 4 days before surgery that her tonsils were a preexisting condition and would not cover the procedure even though it had been previously approved. I decided to not focus on that issue, instead I asked my friends to pray.
  4.  Ask for help. Do you know what gets in the way of us asking for help? Pride.  “His pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the LORD his God.” 2 Chronicles 26:16  We need to ask God for help and help from others when we have needs.  It’s humbling to ask for help depending on what kind of help you need. If you can’t ask, pride is in the way and God hates pride.
  5. Read the Word. This is where you find TRUTH. In any trial Dale and I are facing, we read the Word.  It is our faithful road map.  Holy Spirit ALWAYS gives hope and answers through His Word. The more problems we have- the more we choose to read it.              Does God Still work Miracles? 

What do you need help with  to get through your trial today?  Prayer. . .do you need to ask for help…time in the Word? Write what you need in the comment section. We’ll pray for you. The comment enters you to win two books, Jesus Calling, The Prisoner in the Third Cell(this is a MUST read) and a TARGET GIFT CARD!Winner drawn next week.jesus callingThe Prisoner in the Third Cell