Not This Time

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“But then I remember something that fills me with hope.  The Lord’s kindness never fails!  If He had not been merciful, we would have been destroyed.  The Lord can always be trusted to show mercy each morning.  Deep in my heart I say, ‘The Lord is all I need, I can depend on Him.’  The Lord is kind to everyone who trusts and obeys Him.  It is good for us to wait patiently for the Lord to save us.”

I needed to be reminded of my memory verse this morning.  Such a good verse to have memorized.  In the face of all sorts of changes: job loss, doing ministry, walking by faith, doing something scary that you know the Lord told you to do but you still feel a little scared to jump out there and do it, seemingly incessantly irritating and frustrating moments in my day, being kind in very mean situations and relentless people, disappointing times and disappointing people, teenage pregnancy, drug abuse, addiction, death.  SO many opportunities to despair.  OR

Then I remember something that fills me hope.  The Lord’s KINDNESS NEVER FAILS!  If He had not been merciful, we would have been destroyed.  The Lord can ALWAYS be trusted to show MERCY EACH MORNING.  Deep in my heart I say, ‘The Lord is all I need.  I CAN DEPEND ON HIM.’  The Lord is kind to everyone who trusts and obeys Him.  It is GOOD for us to wait patiently for the Lord to save us.

Playtime is over.  As Dr. Crawford Loritts said,”We’ve got to go beyond the cliches of our faith, beyond inspirational talks, and live in the book.” This walk . . . this walk is not a game.  I have a real enemy who always shows up to play hard, as if He has a great chance at winning.  But not this time.  I take a deep breath.  Say it as many times as I need to.  Squeeze my eyes tight, clench my fists together and command my mind and my heart to receive it.  Everything, yes, EVERYTHING is going to be all right (that’s right, ALL RIGHT).  This is but a moment that satan tried to use to scare me, distract me and steal my faith.  But not this time. Because . . .

Then I remember something that fills me with hope.  The Lord’s kindness never fails!  If He had not been merciful, we would have been destroyed.  The Lord can always be trusted to show mercy each morning.  Deep in my heart I say, ‘The Lord is all I need.  I can depend on Him.’  The Lord is kind to everyone who trusts and obeys Him.  It is good for us to wait patiently for the Lord to save us.  ~Lamentations 3:21-26 (CEV)

Amen.

Anything?

Saw this today in my email from (in)courage.  Got me thinking . . .

Check it out.

Jennie Allen was also featured on Life Today with James and Betty Robison today.  Today she spoke about her bible study Stuck and she had some very relevant insights.

Today was the first that I had heard of Jennie Allen but her current project, Anything, really spoke to me and I thought that you may enjoy it too.

Risky prayer to pray, “God, I’ll do anything.  I’ll give you anything . . . even the very thing of which I am most afraid.”

Or is it?

Are you desperate enough for God to pray that prayer?

Black Bean Burgers! Ole!

My huni and I recently watched “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.”  For those of you who haven’t seen it, it’s a documentary about a man who started a small revolution when he realized that by changing his eating habits, he could not only lose weight, but he could become healthier to the point of getting off of medication that was sustaining his life after being inflicted with a very serious autoimmune disease.  His idea was to go on a juice fast for 60 days during which time he would only consume fresh fruits and veggies, slid through a juicer.  It’s a very inspiring movie and we really enjoyed it. By the end, I was rooting for one of the guys and I nearly cried near the end.  For reals.

After watching it, E got all kinds of ideas about what we should be doing and what our family eating habits should be.  Mostly, we have pretty healthy eating habits but he wanted more.  So we settled on making a drastic change and decided we would become (mostly) pescatarian (hey, I loves me some Bojangle’s!!  I can’t COMPLETELY give it up!! . . .right now).  It’s been tough coming up with recipes because it requires a lot more thought but I’m pulling out some oldies but goodies to get us started.  Last night, I got in the kitchen and made some black bean burgers and homeade tortilla chips.  Thought I’d share the recipe.

Black bean Burgers:

1 tall can black beans (I used a 26.5 oz can which yielded about 8 burgers)

1/2 cup bread crumbs

2 eggs

fresh cilantro (you decide how much; if you love cilantro, go crazy, if you like it, use about a handful)

2 tsp cumin

dash of salt

dash of pepper

dash of onion poweder

dash of garlic powder

(by dash, I mean to taste, you decide how much you’d like based on how well seasoned you’d like your burgers and how you’d like for them to taste)

whole wheat tortillas

shredded cheese (optional)

Olive Oil

Salsa Sauce:

1 tbsp sour cream

2 tsbp salsa

Chips:

Corn Tortillas

Olive Oil

Kosher Salt

For the burgers:

  • Gather all ingredients into a bowl.
  • Using a blender, mix all ingredients until a nice, well blended mixture forms.

        

  • Pat out burgers to desired size.
  • Heat olive oil in a warm skillet and place burgers into skillet, about three at a time depending on the size of the skillet.
  • Cook burgers on each side for about 3 minutes. (If you try to flip too soon, the burgers will fall apart. If you flip too late, they may be a little charred, but still tasty.)

  • In a separate pan, place a bit of butter (or non stick spray) in a pan and begin to toast the whole wheat tortilla.
  • (optional) As the tortilla is toasting, add a bit of cheese to each side so that it may melt simultaneously with the toasting tortilla.

  • As the burgers finish up, take them out of the pan and place them onto a lined pan to drain (won’t be much draining happening but excess oil will be collected by the lined pan).
  • Then, choose one burger patty and place it onto the toasting tortilla.
  • Add the special sauce and continue toasting to desired color and texture then close the burger!

        

For the Salsa Sauce:

  • Simply stir salsa into sour cream and there ya go!

        

For the Chips:

  • Using a pizza cutter, slice approx three corn tortillas at a time into desired chip size.

  • Place cut chips onto a lined baking pan.
  • Drizzle chips with olive oil (as much or as little as desired) and sprinkle with salt.

  • Place chips in a 400 degree oven and bake for 10 minutes or until desired brown, crispy goodness!

            

The verdict . . .

      

With a little help from my Pinterest board “Healthy Biology,” maybe I can keep this up.  Check it out:  http://pinterest.com/pamelovely/healthy-biology/

Would love to see what else is out there and for you to share your recipes with me!

Hello World, Goodbye Fear. . .

Right now I feel like the kid who has been aching to ride her bike without training wheels.  She knows she can do it.  She sees the other kids doing it and wants to join in ever so much.  But . . .

After months of practice compounded by weeks of enduring the extra two small yet powerful wheels that protect her from falling, but also keep her isolated from the adventure and those who dare to venture, she decides that the jutted-out-to-the-side-hindrances have to go.  Free from the fear enablers, she gets on, firmly plants feet to pedals and slowly takes off, every now and then slamming feet on concrete to prevent an ugly, horrible crash.  And she does this stopping and starting until she gains enough momentum not to care anymore.  The thrill of the wind on her face and the sheer accomplishment of succeeding in trying is enough to make her wind those pedals in circular motion over and over again.

Writing can be an experience much like that for me.  I often allow all of the fear concerning my writing gift to halt me rather than allowing my passion for writing to propel me.  But no more.  Here I am world!!  Writing!!  My blog!!  Whew!! (shouts into a megaphone —>) The girl is on the bike!  No training wheels of caution because so far, for me at least, caution has quickly gone from sensibility and thoughtfulness to excuses and failure to even try.  I’m just so happy to be doing something I love with no fear of success or failure (well, maybe there is still just a little bit of fear . . . :0).  Fear has played the role of friend but showed up more like a foe time and time again.  Uhhhhhhh, I think I wanna try something else for a while.  Turns out I still have some courage left.  (who knew??!!?)

The girl is on the bike.  And she has her hands up, head thrown back and she is grinning wildly as she rides down the hill of an open road. . .

 

photo found on google.com