Ambitions, Impact

Impact #2

My last impact entry was about 2 months ago. A lot has happened in that time. Health scare, which was relieved by a less serious health problem. Good news! (Bad news is: POTS is the reason for worsening symptoms. All before Spring.)

Feeling – Lately, I have felt a myraid of things. Home Sick. Loneliness. Frustration. (Dis)Contentment. Peace. Joy. Laughter. Mmmm, variety of emotions. Good, Bad, and in between. POTS has been rough, but I am still here. So, that is good news. I am not hooked up to a hospital bed with monitors. I am finding joy in unlikely places of chronic illness.

While all days aren’t joy-infused, I have the hope of my Savior Jesus Christ to remind me who I am. . . in spite of illness. Looking forward to Heaven, but trying to make the most of my time on earth to do something worthwhile.

Studying – Since my last impact, I have nearly finished studying 1 & 2 Thessalonians. Last week, I began the book of James. I am really enjoying it. One of today’s verse hit home for me, and is found at the end of this blog post. I have been reading and studying using The Living Bible found on Bible Gateway, which is a paraphrase like the Message. I am absolutely loving it! It is soo nice to have the privilege to open up the Bible in a new translation, using different wording, but having the same meaning. The Word of God is coming alive!

Reading – I am not quite sure that I am reading anything right now, since I have gotten out of the habit of reading actual books. Desiring God and reading the Bible in chronological order (that things happened) is what I am reading. Our church is reading the Bible together in a specific schedule. We have gone through Job, Genesis, Exodus, and are in Leviticus. Even with the audio Bible, my reading track record isn’t perfection but who says it has to be?

Listening To –

Celebrating – Many things.

  • Jesus is the top celebration. He loves me, and stays with me no matter what!
  • Doctors who care about their patients.
  • Good music that speaks God’s truths
  • Seeing how God can revive my broken spirit.

Loving – the gift of streaming biblical teachings, for anyone to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the biblical truths we need to know.

Praying – for my health, family, and a new blog series idea.

Holding Onto – Jesus! I am holding onto Jesus. Jesus is the One who is holding me, through all of life’s storms.

But when I am afraid, I will put my confidence in you. Yes, I will trust the promises of God… (Ps. 56:3-4)

Other Scriptures – James 1:9 (found below)

A Christian who doesn’t amount to much in this world should be glad, for he is great in the Lord’s sight (James 1:9).

Ambitions, Impact

Impact #1

im·pact

  1. to fix firmly by or as if by packing or wedging
  2. to press together

The Introduction (I Should Probably Give. . .)

I love visiting blogs, where the writer shares their lives. I have seen on, at least, one blog – where the gal will write in – with specific things in mind. So, I thought I would give it a try. I am calling it, impact. This is the name of this part of my blog, for one simple reason.

Many things impact our lives, which lead us to impact others by what we say and do.

Our goal in life, ought to be Jesus. Let’s run to Jesus and the abundant life He wants to give us, shall we?

The Questions –

Feeling – It has been a trying week, but I am seeing God’s handiwork. I am pretty joyful (overall, not without my sorrow-filled moments), considering standing brings out debilitating symptoms (and sometimes a little too close to blacking out).

…ehem…

Actually, I have even woken up many times with specific praise songs laid upon my heart. The Holy Spirit has caused my spirit to start singing the lyrics to specific songs, throughout the day (or during the night). For me, it shows I am pursuing Christ (and He is working in my heart)- even in the middle of my storm. Humming songs in silence isn’t my common practice, but it shows God’s working and causing my faith to become stronger.

Studying – I have been studying Psalms 98 and Luke 19:37-40. This is such a powerful set of Scriptures to get our hands on. God is doing incredible, out-of-this-world, things in our lives, and we need to praise Him. We need to break out our musical instruments and voices, to sing our hearts out with an abundance of joy – that God gives to us.

Reading –

Listening To – Last few weeks, I have been enjoying “Everything” by Lifehouse (Find the “Everything” skit on YouTube, if you get a chance). Then, there is the whole “Party Like a Princess” by Jamie Grace. That one I am really enjoying celebrating too.

Celebrating – Today, I am celebrating who God is. God is providing me with the encouragement, strength, and ministering that I need. Even while I face health struggles, God is my Constant and shows me that He is the One fighting for me! (Exodus 14:14; Job 1:6-12, 2:1-7; Romans 8:31).

Loving – These days, I am loving silence. While I enjoy entertainment in form of iTunes, Netflix, and movies, I love the option of shutting it off to read a book or just talk with the Lord. I am learning to be okay with silence (even crave it). Silence helps me draw nearer to the Lord and feel His presence.

Silence ushers me into God’s Presence, through the Holy Spirit.

Which reminds me that… I am whole, completely full, and lacking nothing.

So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority (Col. 2:10, NLT).

The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing (Ps. 23:1, NIV).

Praying – Right now, I am praying for my family and our needs to be met. I am praying for God to work a miracle on our behalf.

Holding Onto – Knowing God is fighting for me (see 1 Peter 1:5).

Through faith, God’s power is standing watch, protecting you (1 Peter 1:5a; VOICE).

Other Scriptures – Psalm 23; 2 Corinthians 10-13

Ambitions, Citizen of Heaven, Resident of Earth, Goals

How Will You Prepare for this Transition?

This past week, we have had a great deal of emotions related to the election alone. Some happy. Some sad. Some resolving to be content in a discontented situation. A wide array of emotions. Our actions are just as varied. Complaints. Protests. Violence. Self-isolation. Deleting facebook friends, who are in favor of a different candidate than you are.

We and our world are in dire need of intervention. We need to remember our hope that extends beyond any of today’s politicians’ promises for a better tomorrow. It is time to remember the hope, assurance, and peace that only God can give!

I don’t know (nor do I want to) where you stand in relation to the election. I don’t know anyone’s opinions on the election. But I do want us to do something intentional. There are ten weeks before our next president begins his four year term (along with his cabinet of advisers).

Let’s devote ourselves to search the heart of God intentionally, and just give to God our hearts and our country.

When we give ourselves fully to God, that is when He is going to move mountains like never before! I am setting up a reading plan for myself, over these next ten weeks. I am sharing it, in case this is stirring anyone else’s heart to join me in this pursuit.

I want to see God move mountains.

I want to see God perform miracles like never before.

I want to see what my God can do!

… It all begins with prayer and studying His Word!

… Its starts with us turning from sin and turning our lives fully toward God!

I know God is deeply concerned about our nation, too. God sees everything going on, and He is in tears about everything going on too. He cares about what is going on in the nation, because He lovingly and passionately cares for us. He wants us to begin seeking Him and to start inviting Him to be involved in our lives and our nation as well.

The question is, how will we prepare for our next president?

While we could use this as an opportunity to breed discontentment, gossip, and strife, we have another choice too. And, that is to seek after the heart of God. While I cannot promise you that your deepest fears won’t come true, I can promise you that God loves you personally, deeply concerned for you, and wants to work in your life. And, He is not going to leave your side. He is waiting for us, to begin seeking after Him and allowing Him to be our Faithful Companion and Source of Hope.

You can view the reading plan below –

Citizen of Heaven / / Resident of Earth Reading Plan

~ Stacey

Recipes

Oatmeal Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

I love banana bread. Guilty, as charged. So to have slowly rotting bananas, is a blessing – if I have the required energy to make something using them. Yesterday, I made a batch of delicious oatmeal banana chocolate chip muffins. Today, I am making up another batch to use up the last of our “too sweet to eat” bananas.

Ever since my diagnosis of potato allergy (say whaaa?), I have stopped keeping on hand all of the usual gluten free flour products that I once did. Once upon a time ago, I made my own gluten free all purpose flour. Now, I mainly use tapioca flour and quick oats. I don’t use anything else, or at least not often.

oat-banana-cc-muffinsThis is my latest favorite recipe. I don’t get the opportunity to try out new enjoyable recipes very often, between food allergies and chronic illness. So when I tried this out on my life-group and seen they liked it, I knew it was a definite keeper. I have had to make several adjustments, to make this recipe my own.

The basic idea for this recipe is found on Williams-Sonoma and their recipe is designed with your kids’ helping hands in mind.

My Ingredient List

  1. Quick oats – up to 1.75 cups
  2. Tapioca flour – 1/2 cup (other flours will likely work, too)
  3. Baking soda – 1/2 teaspoon
  4. Baking powder – 2-3 teaspoons (if you choose to add in the extra oats at the end, you will definitely want to have the increased amount of baking powder)
  5. Cinnamon and salt – just a dash
  6. Sweeteners of your choice – Agave (1/4 cup) and Nevella (3 single packets) are what I chose to use.
  7. Eggs – 2
  8. Vegetable oil – 1/4 cup
  9. Ripe bananas (medium) – 3
  10. Vanilla extract – 1.5 teaspoons

Bakes at 350 for 10 minutes
Servings: 12-15 muffins
Freezes wonderfully!

Do you have the above ingredients all ready to be used up? If so, let’s get our baking on!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Dry Ingredients

You will need a large bowl. Pour 1/2 cup of flour into the bowl. Then, you will slowly want to add in the oats. I added in 1/2 cup of oats stirred, stirred, stirred some more. Then once I could see it was well stirred, I added in the second 1/2 cup of oats. We want these two ingredients to be very well stirred, because otherwise the muffins might not turn out. I don’t know about you, but it’s maddening whenever my baked goods don’t turn out.

Now is the perfect time to add in the little things that make our muffins taste yummy. Add in a dash of cinnamon, salt, and our three packets of sweetener.

Finally, the stuff that makes our muffins rise. Grab your 2-3 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Stir it again.

Liquid Ingredients

Now, for our liquid ingredients. To save ourselves the trouble of a big mess, we will be using a gallon zip-lock bag to do our mixing.

Remove the banana peels, and put the three bananas in your zip-lock bag. Lock it in without the extra air, and mash your bananas well.

Once you have yourself some mashed bananas, add in the following ingredients. Be sure to mix with each addition. As you close the bag to zip and shake, make sure you let out the air. This will make this part of the recipe go much smoother. Be careful as you add each ingredient, so the bag doesn’t accidentally tip over – creating a mess.

  • 2 Eggs
  • Agave (2-4 tablespoons)
  • Vanilla (1.5 teaspoons or more, depending on preferences)
  • Vegetable Oil (1/4 cup)

Merging the Two

Have you mixed up your zip-lock bag filled with your liquid ingredients? Once you have done so, you will want to carefully pour your liquid mixture into your large bowl. Take the time to make sure it is stirred together well. Now, you can add in your chocolate chips. Best part of the muffins is probably this ingredient right here.

After you have added in your chocolate chips, you may find that your batter is a little more liquid than preferred. This is where I added in some more oats (3/4 cup). Again, mix them in slowly and stir well.

Grab your muffin tin, and spray with cooking spray. The more you spray, the less it will stick to the pan. I don’t have cupcake liners, so this is a good thing for me. Fill your muffin tin up until just after the half way point (about 3/4’s is generally best). The number of muffins you get, depends on how full the muffin tin is. There is no right or wrong way, to go about it. It won’t spill over if you fill it to the top of your muffin tin.

Bake at 350 for about ten minutes. Warning: Make sure you keep an eye on your muffins. The cooking time may vary, depending on your oven.

Viola! You should have yourself some beautiful muffins, by this point. You can easily freeze your muffins to have ready-to-go breakfast or snack. Plus: It is easily allergy free for most people.

Goals

Wonderful Possibilities // DLRB (August 28 – September 3)

It is a brand new week. Full of wonderful possibilities. Even when we face current trials, this week is still full of wonderful possibilities. As always, I am setting my goals based on my hopes for this week – taking into account my limitations as well. So if I don’t hit every single goalit is okay!

//Do//

Blog // Serving

  • Write reviews (Sheets, Bevere, TerKeurst).
  • Write blog posts for last week of Isaiah 40 study.
  • Write blog posts for first week of Gleaning From the Heart of Jesus.
  • Continue to craft homemade cards.

Food

  • Find one allergy friendly recipe.
  • Take baby steps to eat better.

//Learn//

This week, I want to be intentional in my Christian life. I want to deliberately seek after God with my whole heart.

“Blessed are those who keep his statutes
    and seek him with all their heart—
they do no wrong
    but follow his ways (Ps. 119:2-3, NIV).”

For me, this means: developing an attitude of prayer and continue reading//studying what God is like. I want to continue to read books, that fuel spiritual growth. I want to learn how to make the most of my days, even when I am not feeling well and must rest. So this week, I have a few books I am planning on reading (see below).

“We never grow closer to God when we just live life. It takes deliberate pursuit and attentiveness.” ― Francis Chan, Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God

This week, I need to intentionally seek Christ & to allow Him to fill my mind like Scripture teaches us to do.

“You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You (Isa. 26:3, NKJV).

“So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace. For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will… And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. (Rom. 8:6-7, 10, NLT).

//Read//

**Read for a minimum of 20 minutes per day**

  • Read Bevere’s newest book (“Without Rival”), along with “Let Me Be a Woman” (Elisabeth Elliot).
  • Begin “Really Bad Girls of the Bible” (Liz Curtis Higgs).
  • Study Psalms 119:1-8.
  • Continue with Gleaning study (& other studies).

//Be//

immersed in prayer and studying my Bible, so God can speak to me.

I want to welcome the intimacy only Christ can provide, through time spent with Him.