Friday, January 1, 2016

My Verse For 2016

In my search for a verse for 2016, I reviewed my verses from previous years. each verse can be represented by a single word. Starting in 2011, these words have been SEEK, GO, SERVE, HOPE, and TRUST. In looking at these words, I see a progression. In SEEKing God's will, we followed when he said, GO. As we watched other Christians falling away, we reaffirmed  that our home would SERVE the Lord. That commitment led to renewed HOPE and TRUST.
The word that comes to mind today is SURRENDER. All of these other words are good, but if I haven't fully surrendered I am going to continually succumb to my own fleshly desires. I know there are areas of my life that I struggle with, and until I give them completely to God, I will not have victory.
I didn't have far to look for my verse.



I want this verse to be more than words...I want it to be real in my life. I don't want to start out the year committing to 'doing' or 'being' better, only to find that somewhere along the way, I've lost that zeal, and I've slipped back into old habits....whether physically or spiritually. What I want is to truly be transformed...and unlike most years, I have no plan, no program, no idea really...exactly how that is going to happen; how this year will be different from any other year. And maybe that is the difference...maybe that is the first step toward surrender. All I know for sure is that HE is able, and I'm trusting in him to do a work in my life. 

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Reflecting On 2015

Continuing my tradition of looking back over the past year....even though I haven't posted all year!

1. What were the highlights or accomplishments of 2015?

This year hasn't been one of big highlights, but more of steady progress, continuing in the direction we believe God has for us.
Brian has now been back to work at the Royal Oak Inn for almost a year and a half. It's been a busy time for him, but hopefully things will settle into a routine soon,,,,well, I can always hope.
The main highlight was becoming members of our church in June. We'd been attending for about 9 months, and knew it was time to take that step and become more involved in the ministry.

2. What were the major themes of the year?

I think the main theme of this year could be described as just putting one foot in front of the other and doing the next thing. It's been good to be a part of a church again, and to have opportunities to serve, whether in VBS, Ladies Conference, or the ongoing ministries of nursery, cleaning and yard care. Hearing the word preached regularly, and participating in Bible studies has brought back a stability and purpose that was lacking in my life, and in my family.

3. What disappointments or regrets did you experience?

Last year, I wrote, "I can learn from my regrets, and I can commit to a better today and tomorrow. With that thought in mind, I look forward to the changes that 2015 will bring, and pray for the strength to embrace them," This year I can say, I have no regrets, and have indeed embraced the changes in 2015, and am looking forward to what 2016 will bring.

4. What was missing from the year?

Last year I said, "We are closing out the year with a much clearer vision of God's will for our family, and the accompanying peace (that has been missing)." That continues to be true; we're following the direction we believe God has given, taking steps to bring our family closer to him. I know that I'm in a better place spiritually than I was last year, and believe the same is true for my family. But I also know that I still lack the self discipline needed to have a close relationship with the Lord. I was challenged by last nights message on TIME. What is required to be close to God is time...time in his word, and time in prayer, will result in a desire for time in worship. I'm lazy, plain and simple. I know this is something I struggle with and need to change.

5. What did you learn from the past year?

I think this year just reaffirmed what I learned the previous year. We need to be a part of a church to live this Christian life in a way that brings glory to God. I know that our time away from church was so detrimental to all of us. I also know I have a long way to go to get where I need to be, and I need  the church to help me get there....we're not in this alone. 

Once again...looking forward to the coming year!



Thursday, January 1, 2015

My Verse For 2015

 I hadn't yet found a verse for 2015 when our pastor was preaching, and  suggested a particular verse that would benefit anyone who made it their own. I realized it's exactly what I need this year. So often I lose sight of the fact that God is in control...no matter what the world around me looks like. I just need to trust that when I call out to him, he WILL answer, and he will do far more than I could ever have imagined. I hope to keep this verse in the forefront of my mind this year as I intercede for those I love.



Jeremiah 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Hot Taco Dip Recipe

This is a great dish for a new year's get together. We had it on Christmas Eve, but with my planned changes for the new year, it may be a long time before I make this again!

Recipe:

1 pkg. cream cheese
2 cups (500 ml)cottage cheese
Heat and mix well, and spread in the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish.

Top with:
1/2 pkg of taco seasoning
chopped green pepper
chopped green onion
chopped tomato
chopped black olives
chopped jalapeno peppers

Top with:
salsa (1-2 cups as desired)
grated marble cheese
remaining taco seasoning



Heat in oven for 20 minutes at 350 F.


Stir and serve with tortilla chips. Enjoy!

Hot Taco Dip and Tortilla Chips

Happy New Year!

 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Reflecting On 2014

Continuing my tradition of looking back over the past year.

 1. What were the highlights or accomplishments of 2014?
  The biggest highlight has been Brian starting back to work at the Royal Oak Inn & Suites, as Maintenance Manager. It feels like we've come full circle, with Brian back working where he was before we moved away.
Another highlight has once again been puppies....lots of puppies...followed by visits to the vet for spay and neuter surgeries! We do love placing puppies with happy families, but it's also a lot of work, and ties us down.
The final highlight of the year was Danica accepting Jesus as her Saviour on November 30th.

   2. What were the major themes of the year?
Change has been the major theme this past year. After a short time at home, Justin went back to Alberta to work with Lorne again, then returned in July to start working at Armwood with Brian. With Brian's job change in August, Justin lost his ride to work in Portage and decided to get his own apartment, once again shrinking our family to five.
September brought another change, when we visited a different church, and made the decision to attend there. 

3. What disappointments or regrets did you experience?

  Last year, concerning regrets,  I stated "we can't go back and change things." While that is true, I can learn from my regrets, and I can commit to a better today and tomorrow. With that thought in mind, I look forward to the changes that 2015 will bring, and pray for the strength to embrace them.

4.  What was missing from the year?

   Much like the previous year, we lacked clear direction, and for me personally, peace. But we are closing out the year with a much clearer vision of God's will for our family, and the accompanying  peace. 

5. What did you learn from the past year?

  In 2013 I was reminded of the importance of being part of a community of faith, but we were still not sure where we fit in. We were  trusting the Lord to show us, and to provide....and he has. It's taken some time to get over the difficulties we had experienced in previous churches, and to be ready to try again, but we've taken that first step, and we're looking forward to what 2015 brings.
Happy new year to all!

 

Monday, December 22, 2014

He Scattereth the Hoarfrost

 He giveth snow like wool: he scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes.
Psalm 147:16
~~~

I don't always enjoy winter, but I do love hoarfost! Even ordinary objects, when covered in white crystals become a beautiful work of art....one created by the hand of God. My husband captured some of this beauty around our yard. 











 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Story of the Candy Cane

The candy maker created the cane
As a reminder of the Saviour who came.
He used hard candy to symbolize
The Rock of Ages, Jesus Christ.
He made it white to signify
Christ's purity and sinless life.
He fashioned the candy the shape of a staff,
For the Good Shepherd, who died on our behalf.
A wide stripe represents Christ's blood,
Shed on the cross for the sins of the world.
Then he added three thin stripes
To depict the suffering of Jesus Christ.
The candy cane gives to all
An important message to recall. 
Remember that Jesus is the reason
We celebrate the Christmas season.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~