My belief on this is very simple.
But I’ll go ahead and give some background and a bit of what has been changing in our lives.
There are people who say they are Christians, who take this “word of prophecy”, “hearing from God”, or whatever you want to call it, and they twist it with lies, using it to their own profit. That profit is financial, social, and I honestly don’t know what other kicks they get from it.
It’s also Sin. Wrong. Evil. And one way the devil has used it is this: there are those of us who are so disgusted and freaked out by these things, that we refuse any thing that even hints at “hearing from God today”.
I am appealing to you today.
I hear from God. My husband hears from God (better than I do). Some of the things I hear from God are not found in Scripture. But neither do they go against Scripture. Here is an example.
Our three big kids are currently working through abcmouse.com’s early learning academy. For a week or more now, Bomani had been trying to tell me that he is stuck at a certain game! It just was too slow. Or something. Being busy and consumed with other things, I thought he was just being picky or not wanting to do something hard. Finally, when he got through his mother’s head that he really cannot go on in the learning path, I studied it out. It really wasn’t working. (They each have a kindle that they work on.) I tried several days. We would get a bit further, but then it would refuse to work! I sent a message to abcmouse.com’s contact team.
Today I sat down with it again, determined to get him past this point so he could continue. I was stumped. WHY did those buttons refuse to respond????? I sat down at our big computer, deciding to work on something else while it sloooowly did it’s thing on the kindle. But then it refused to even work slowly! 🙁
As I sat there, the idea came into my head that I should try it on the big computer. I pulled the game up in Bomani’s profile. It sped through the screen! I called him in. In about 2 minutes he had finished the game, and was very happily collecting his rewards.
It was not necessarily logical for me to think of this working on the big computer, but not on the kindle. God spoke to me. He put that thought into my head. I was so grateful!
I don’t find that in His written Word. But neither did it tell me to do something sinful. When Craig tells me that he feels that we should go to this certain place this evening, we go. I feel an extreme measure of safety and blessing in my husband’s sensitivity to the voice of Father God.
I feel such an intense gratefulness that God speaks to us today. That I can sit down, talk to God, and listen to Him. I believe His written Word. It is inspired, blessed, and gives so much incredible direction and work in our lives. But if we say that there is nothing more than that–if we say that when people say, “I heard God give me this word for you:…” that they are wrong, that they are unsafe, that this is bogus…I believe that we are missing something essential, key, important, living ~ something God told us in His written Word, that is going to be there for us after He leaves. (Sorry for that long, run-on sentence!)
The Spirit of Truth was sent to teach us all things–to bring things to our remembrance, to guide us into all truth. What is the gift of prophecy, if it is not God speaking to believers???
A more intensely personal part of our story involves this prophesying into our lives by others.
Last year, Craig started being mentored and taught by a Christian businessman. He mentors Craig in business and in heart things. In his first whiteboard session with Melvin, Melvin told Craig a bit of what God has ahead for us. Melvin is very strong in this gifting. We received that and believed it.
But what was very cool, was that the same year, God brought several ladies of God into my life to mentor me. Their prophecies matched Melvin’s. I am new to all this, and so for me, that blew me out of the water. But of course, God can do that! He can speak anything to His children who are listening.
I am still working this out in my life. I am not very good at hearing. I need to keep killing the lies that come in that say, He won’t say anything to you, and if He does, you aren’t good enough to hear it… Those are lies. Kick them out!
Another amazing way God is working in our lives is through the small church we are a part of. There, the Pastor will stand up and say, “I have this word for someone, you know who you are…” and proceed to tell us what the Holy Spirit had been saying to him. Or he will single one of us out to give us the word from God. I feel so protected. He is listening to God.
Last week I was having intense struggles in staying strong in faith for things we are waiting on. I fell into a ditch and was paralyzed in my efforts at getting up. Craig was gone Sunday, so I had to take the hundred kids to church in sheets of rain, by myself. I did it. I knew that I needed church…desperately.
God spoke so clearly to me through that service that I was almost offended! (hahaha! Be careful, this ain’t all fun!) I felt knocked upside the head, not comforted in my affliction. 🙂 (Laughing at myself now…) Then I realized…yeah, this is the body of Christ! These are my brothers and sisters, and they are speaking what God is giving to them. And the awesome thing is, I got out of the ditch! Yeah!
I need to go take care of my kids now. So I’ll shut up. For now. I’m so passionate about this, because it has revolutionized our lives…in such a good way.
And I know so many of you already live this life. (I can be a late bloomer.) I love learning from you!
Be blessed today!
“By faith in His name, His name has made this man strong, whom you see and know. So the faith that comes through Him has given him this perfect health in front of all of you.
(The story of the lame man who Peter commanded to get up and walk!)
I’m just learning about these things. For most of my life, I would read over these verses in the Bible and think that it was only for that era. But now I know that those verses are for us, today! Especially when I read about how Jesus commanded us to be filled with power, lay our hands on people–and they will be healed, cast out demons, and baptize people.
Here’s a cool story! It will also show you my weakness and how much I am still learning…
Ever since Talia’s birth, my back has been weak, probably due to very little core strength as a result of the pregnancy. (I’m workin’ on that!) I take all my kids to our chiropractor every two weeks, but I have found that I need an adjustment every week, which makes me busy.
Last week I was rearranging some furniture and did it to my back again! So I made an appointment for Friday evening with my chiropractor. In the early hours of Friday morning, I realized that I was coming down with the stomach virus that had been making it’s rounds in our church and our home. 🙁 I was very sick on Friday, and there was no way I could make my appointment.
Saturday I felt much better! But my back was even worse due to the tossing and turning I’d done all day Friday. I took my computer and my phone, and sat down, trying to find a chiropractor open on Saturday. My next appointment with my chiropractor wasn’t until Tuesday! I made a number of calls, but no one would answer, or take me in as a new customer on such short notice. I was becoming more and more frantic. My back really hurt! And nights with my back out were the worst!
Then through my anxious thoughts and heart came the quiet voice of Father God.
“I can heal your back as easily as I can heal any other part of your body.”
I put aside my phone and computer. I laid my hands on my back and commanded it to be healed in Jesus’ Name. Be healed. Be strong. Go back into place. In His Name, and by His stripes…we are healed.
As the day went on, my back improved more and more. Nights were good, and when we went to our chiropractor appointment on Tuesday, she told me that my back was not bad! (It’s often bad.) I wasn’t surprised! I told her my story, and we were happy together.
Not everything my husband and I pray for is healed immediately. There are lots of things I don’t understand. But I’m learning. I want to keep learning. And above all, we will keep believing in our Father and His power and His good, good heart.
Be blessed today.
Okay. I apologize for the sort of crazy title. 🙂
Today as I went down for my (attempt at a) nap, I began thinking about my blog. A jolt of sadness hit me as I realized how long it’s been since I posted. Am I becoming one of those dear souls who decides that facebook and texting and email are enough? Easier? So I just let my blog…slowly…die?
The thought hit me in the face like a slap.
And yet, facebook brought to the top of the milk, the true bloggers. (I’m not suggesting we are the cream…)
Okay. Enough strange, lame, and slightly naughty thoughts…
Back to my (attempt at a) nap.
I lay in bed thinking. That’s when God began showing me what was happening…in His still, small voice.
My blog was stuck in a sort of muddy bog. In a sense, it was safe there. No one questioned it. A few happy, sweet comments trickled in. I told myself that my blog was here to post pictures for family and friends, especially those far away! I told myself that I don’t want to lose readers by becoming too…scary. I talked to myself about being very gentle and careful not to hurt anyone. That was in the past year. Today, I saw a picture of this blog of mine. And it was caught in a bog. Slowing moving. But mostly ~ safe. An illusion of secure and happy.
And the result is simple. It’s not thriving. It’s not really…blessed. No, God is not striking it with lightning. But it ain’t thriving.
Thriving is not the end goal. My goal is this: to walk in obedience, love, and worship to Father God.
So I’m done being safe and careful. I’m done writing only what I think my readership would be okay with. I’m ready to do what God showed me quite a few months ago, last year–serve Him with my blog.
God has blown our lives out of the water in the past year, and I’m ready to share, on here, the things He has been doing. Or just whatever He wants me to write. I don’t even know where this is going. Maybe things won’t even change that much on here! But inside of me, yes ma’am! We’re different! We gonna’ serve God with our fingers on the keyboard! No longer mince words and pander around.
I will be writing what I believe. Always. Keeping in mind that many of us believe differently, and we are still followers of Jesus. I’m putting this in stone here ~ it’s okay if we differ in our thoughts and beliefs. We are all on our own journeys. I have so much to learn. So much to keep changing. This is simply my words…as I go.
May God be honored ~ Always!
So, the other night I pulled out my favorite cookbook and therein found the inspiration for these spring rolls! They are really more like a “Chinese Burrito”. 🙂 But I’m sure you could make them smaller…more “spring roll” size. I am excited about researching and tweaking it some more to bring more authentic flavor into this dish!
It was so awesome to eat a spring roll, guilt free!
But here is what I did. You can also find it by going to my home page, recipe tab, in main dishes. Enjoy!
My men. Love.
This picture. It’s framed in my <3 .
Birthday party for a very dear friend! (I am blessed with amazing friends and mommies to fill my cup!)
First pepper from our garden! Now maybe we can munch on something other than cilantro when we go out in the evening to see how the garden is doing. 🙂
This is our current favorite. 🙂 Partly because it takes about 10 minutes to prepare! Boneless, skinless chicken thighs, okra sliced through the long way, onions, mushrooms, carrots, peppers…whatever you like really. Pile into a large mixing bowl. Pour olive oil and balsamic vinegar over it. Add thyme and rosemary, salt and pepper. Mix. Pop onto baking sheets. Roast at 425 for 20 minutes. It’s sooo good!
Our evening walks are so lovely this time of the year.
The twins hung the laundry out! 🙂
Bomani is in KS this week. We miss him!
Oh, just hangin’ out at my friend, Amber’s house, where she spoils us with tea and lovely food. 🙂
Got me a lotta’ kids. 🙂
There are some very exciting things happening right now! I’ll keep you informed! 🙂 🙂
Chef Annabelle with a tasty treat for Bomani to try. (Yes. A diaper on her head…)
After all the fun of sourdough and catching the wild yeasts of the air, I have settled into buying sprouted wheat flour off of Amazon and baking it the easy way. Mostly because my kids will eat this. 🙂 If anyone knows how I can buy a 25 lb. sack of sprouted wheat flour, let me know!
I love Texas. I love Texas fall, winter, and spring. Summer can get…a bit hot. 🙂
My doll baby.
He likes to run away when I need to change his diaper or put him to bed! The best way to get him out of here fast is to take a picture of him.
Cuz then he comes hauling out to see it! 🙂
Craig went fishing with some of the guys from church! So I made tarter sauce, sweet potato fries, and green bean fries to go with it.
This pretty much describes how Enzo feels about Talia. 🙂 He adores her, and when she wiggles around beside him, he thinks it’s terribly funny!
She fell asleep holding one of her toys. 🙂
My favorite way to use mozzarella cheese dough is around hot dogs to make corn dogs!
Very blurry picture, but I love it. Hazel can play for hours by herself, talking and making up stories.
(P.S. I got a new phone! Sadly, my Christmas gift phone started having major issues. But my new phone has a better camera and I love it! I just need to learn how to utilize all it’s features. I love photography, but have never spent the time and effort to understand it all.)
Just hold my breath and trust the Lord as I transition Talia to the floor. She loves lying on the floor watching everything!
He is *usually gentle. 🙂
Found twin babies in my crib. 🙂
Enzo was sick for a couple days. I had to hold him most of the time he was awake. It was challenging. 🙂
Briana Thomas’ cheesecake recipe is amazing!
Sometimes I can hardly take my own nap cuz I just want to watch her sleep…
The usual sight when we get up in the morning. She may be sleeping, but she is still “up first!”
It was some sort of Asian Chicken wrapped in lettuce leaves. Delicious.
Craig takes one kid (or two as we see!) out on a date per week. They think it’s awesome! I do too.
I made the skillet brownies with almond butter and put less cocoa in, but added some caramel extract. It was yummy!
Raspberry custard. The flavors of my childhood.
A really simple but delicious chicken/broccoli dish in the slow cooker. Add chopped fresh ginger and garlic. Add curry powder. Eat a lot. 🙂
So fun to have a garden again this year! We did square foot style again, but put quite a few less tomato plants in, hoping they will produce more.
THM E breakfast.
Daisy’s turn for a date! I asked her, before they left, if she was going on a date with dad. She said, “no, we’re just going to a store.” I thought, hmmm… When Craig came home he said that as they walked up to Sweet Frog and she realized it really was a date, she was so excited! <3
I have so much fun with this Baby Doll…sometimes I scare myself… 🙂 🙂
A cake for my friend, Jennifer.
Our very favorite ice cream–fresh strawberry!
I won’t buy these again. Too hard not to eat them! 🙂
One of our favorite, quick, low carb snacks is a cheese cracker! Spread cheddar onto a piece of parchment paper on a plate and microwave until it begins to look hard. Serve with lots of fresh cilantro from the garden!
Somewhere in there, Craig and I fit… Haha! I love co-sleeping. But when Enzo thinks he needs to finish the night in our bed, it gets full!
Coconut Poke Cake.
My favorite childhood snack for breakfast: buttered toast strips with hot chocolate. I did not eat a bite. 🙂
A very quick cake after we returned from Waco on Friday! He liked it. 🙂 The only thing was, I seem to have put salt into the cake instead of stevia. It is savory and not a bit sweet! Haha!
He loves music videos. Amen.
I call her “My Dancin’ Daisy”.
Bringing an armload of flowers!
Peanut butter ice cream with chocolate chip cookies.
And there’s a peek into our lives. Here is hoping for better quality photos and that I will update more often instead of this overload! 🙂
This year, I told Bomani that he can invite 5 friends for a birthday party! It worked out to hold it a week before his birthday. I kinda’ stressed myself out doing this, but it was so worth every bit! AND–I need to learn how to do busy weeks and just chill and go with the flow. 🙂
My kitchen…helpers. 🙂
So, he wanted a football theme for his party. So I made him another football cake, only this one I placed on some “grass”. 🙂
Making this was the fun part. The icing on the cake…hahaha. 🙂
If you see blurry pictures, just be glad I took any at all. 🙂
We wanted football balloons, but they were so expensive! So Bomani suggested I use my paint pen on brown balloons. 🙂
The kids brought the most delightful gifts for him!
Then we all went over to the nearby elementary school and played on the playground and biked on the parking lot. It was great! And no, no pictures. My phone had been having issues with dying at any moment. So it was dead. 🙂
But that was the party. And I have a seven-year-old. What?! 🙂
Okay…on to the next post…
This is actually going to be a short post with just a few pictures. 🙂
We had a fun day at the zoo several weeks ago! The sad part was that Bomani was coming down with a fever, and I could tell he wasn’t feeling like himself. But he wanted to keep walking. At one point, he said he was cold and wanted to go back to the van for his jacket. So I walked back there with him…probably a good 15-25 minute walk. He never wore it then. 🙂 But at least we did what we could. 🙂
Excuse the shorts. Haha! I love this picture, so I’m posting it. 🙂
Craig kept Enzo, which made so that I could actually do this. It was so fun and totally worth the work!
I can’t begin to tell you how exhausted I was when we arrived home. Like crash in a pile on the floor and don’t get up for a week…exhausted. 🙂
We love the Fort Worth Zoo! Come visit us!
I have had something burning in my soul for a while now…things I don’t really understand…so I safely keep quiet. Ponder. Keep walking. And then a few more things happen. The past few days, and today, however, they do not want to be still. These words inside. So I might just try to make a little sense on here…
On Thursday, Craig and I had the opportunity to go on a get-away outing to Waco, Texas! And as we know that life weaves pieces together, and you cannot really separate the physical from the spiritual…this blog post will do the same. 🙂
Craig’s parents came for Bomani’s birthday. They also stayed with the big four kids and allowed us a fantastic, overnight out! This was much anticipated and looked forward to. 🙂 I had dreamed of visiting Waco for a long time. I was so curious. What sort of city is this? After watching Fixer Upper, I knew I needed to experience the Magnolia Silos. And I kept hearing about a coffee shop called Common Grounds. So when the opportunity presented itself, we said, “Let’s Go!”
Our first stop on Thursday afternoon was the Silos.
Talia was a sweet angel and so much fun to tote along! One lady who passed us, looked into her stroller and said, “She is very smart–perceptive!” I said, “Huh?” But then…I’m learning that God speaks through people. Complete strangers at times. And she’s right. That is Talia. I’m not bragging…it’s nothing about us. Just…what God has given her to do His work. Today I looked at my baby girl, and I told her…
Talia, you are free. Free to serve God however you need to. In whatever way you are to follow Him–you are free. I let you go. I set you free.
This place screams “Joanna Gaines”. But there is so much more.
You enter, and there is an aura of peace. People are happy and relaxed. Christian music falls through the air. There is peace there. The Presence of God. I am amazed at what Chip and Joanna have created to further the Kingdom of God.
Yeah. Joanna’s decor style is my style. I love farmhouse. I love sort of vintage but clean and classy. I love lots of white. This was so fun!
Not to mention that I love old cars… 🙂
After the Silos, we headed for dinner! We vacillated between Mediterranean and Vietnamese, and ended up at an interesting little joint where we sat on pillows on the floor and enjoyed amazing Vietnamese food.
That was fun!
Next on our list was the river walk! We found a very old bridge for foot traffic only, and crossed it, angling down to the river after that. It was a gorgeous evening.
There were some enormous Texas cattle that Craig was fascinated with. So he jumped on top for a few pictures. 🙂
We came upon a string of food trucks that looked like so much fun that I nearly ate dinner again just for the experience!
Then we found our hotel, and in our room…there was this.
The next morning we headed out to find this Common Grounds Coffee Shop.
It was cool! But honestly, a bit too rustic for our taste. We enjoyed it, but our dream coffee shop will be a little cleaner and more…classy. But it was so fun!
And we relaxed. And talked.
Talia fit in with the vintage decor.
Then she threw up and so I got to changer her clothes into this darling outfit…
So I had to take a hundred pictures of her…
Those tubby cheeks.
Mommy, do you have to? 🙂
After that we went to find some lunch.
Why not the food trucks?!!
We had tacos, Greek, and Asian. 🙂 Fun.
While we were sitting at the picnic table, a lady sat down across from us and we started talking. In the course of the conversation, we found out that she and her husband were originally from Kansas! Her uncle or cousin worked at Quality Body Shop, where a relative of Craig’s had also worked for years. So we had fun making connections. Then she was telling us about her church, which is the same church Chip and Joanna Gaines attend. It was a really cool conversation and I’m still wondering what all God was up to. Then while we were talking, a lady came up to our table and said to Craig and I, “God is watching you!” She knew our friend across the table and she also worked at Magnolia.
God is watching you.
Why would someone come and say this, out of the blue, to complete strangers?
My heart is burning with this.
Earlier that day, Craig and I had an in depth conversation about our life. About our business. About “what is God doing?”. About my heart…and how I feel that I have just had a tiny piece of finding God’s heart, and I am so excited to continue. I need to continue. The tiny part of God’s heart that I have found? Yeah. There is so much more there…more than I will ever comprehend…
Several hours later, God tells us, through a complete stranger, that He is watching.
It was really incredible to my heart. So comforting. So awesome. So exciting. He wanted us to know that. So He sent someone to tell us.
You can call it whatever you want. But for today, I’m going to call it the word of prophecy. I have only in the past year, been learning so much more about this gift. Not only does God give some people a glimpse into the future, but He also gives them a word to speak to another brother or sister. Or even someone who is lost! He lays this on their heart clearly. They speak. It’s incredible.
Recently I was reading in Timothy. There, to quote Paul, he told Timothy to “keep ablaze the gift of God that is in you, through the laying on of my hands.” Very interesting that that is immediately followed by that verse that says “For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind.” Context. Don’t fear–use it.
He spoke of this twice. Obviously, you can receive gifts of the Holy Spirit through laying on of hands. And you are to use them. Every bit as much as you are to follow other commands. Do it. And do it out of love and passion for God and His Kingdom advancing. Not out of fear. Or out of bondage. Or out of tradition.
Whatever we do…do as to the Lord, not to men. Find in your heart, that devotion, that intense love and desire to find and follow what God has for you. If this sounds ambiguous, I don’t care! Let it push you, drag you kicking and screaming, overflow you, draw you, fill you, –to the Father and His heart!
I wonder–seriously. WHAT really, is God’s heart in so many, many issues down here? When He sees us, what is His heart saying? What is pouring out of His soul? I am convinced that very, very often, we are off. We are so wrong when we think of what God’s heart is feeling and saying. And I am so excited to find what His heart is really saying, feeling–thundering, whispering…
We are the Body of Christ. That in itself is incredible.
Today we had Communion at church. And our Pastor spoke of how we are the bread–the body of Christ.
Can we come together? Can we work together? When we promote each other’s churches, ministries, writings…we are building together!
I see God’s heart torn with our division. I see His heart. And it’s not the way we see this.
He cries to the Father that we would be ONE.
May His Kingdom Come. His will be done on earth. As it’s done in Heaven.
That’s the cry of His heart. Read His word. See what He talks about. See what His heart cries.
That’s what I want to do. I want my little, tiny thoughts and feelings and beliefs to be crashed and expanded and blown away by His heart and His truth.
God is watching.
And that is the most beautiful thing in the whole world.
Last week I kinda’ did myself in. 🙂 But it was so fun! I held a birthday party for Bomani, and told him that he can invite 5 friends. But that’s for another post. Today, I’m posting about the two cakes I made last week.
Several of you asked for the recipes. I’m never sure what to do when people ask for recipes and they are found in recipe books. I often tweak them slightly, as the only sweetener I use is Bolivian Stevia. (Offer him a lower price…he has sent me lots of stevia for less than this listed price!) But I still want the creators of these recipes to be acknowledged and to sell their amazing cookbooks! So I’m going to put a shameless plug in here…these two cookbooks are awesome. The very top of my list is Briana Thomas’ Necessary Food.
I use this book pretty much every day. I use it 30 times more than any other cookbook I own. Enjoy. 🙂
Here is another good cookbook I use:
Sorry I’m not getting the picture up there. It’s a beautiful book with amazing photography. I’m all about cookbooks with fantastic pictures. You eat with your eyes. Really. 🙂
So, having tagged those cookbooks, I’m going to be annoying and not post the recipes…out of respect for them. But I will describe how I put the cakes together!
Here is Bomani’s cake:
So, for this cake I used a recipe similar to the Black Bean Cake recipe here on my blog. You will find it in the Desserts Tab. Bean cakes are perfect for layer cakes! They hold their shape well. I used two sizes of cheesecake pans for this cake. The largest one I used for the “grass”. I’m trying to remember which recipe I used for that frosting! I think I just whipped cream with cream cheese and a tiny bit of butter. Grassfed butter is quite yellow, and I didn’t want it to fight with the green color. I sweetened it with stevia, then added green food coloring. I considered trying some sort of spinach frosting, but I didn’t have time to mess with it. Okay, maybe I didn’t have energy to mess with it. 🙂
So then I used Briana’s Fudgy Mocha Frosting recipe, minus the coffee. (Kids don’t need that!) It worked beautifully for the football! For the white part, I used a squeeze tube of white frosting from HEB. 🙂 If I want to do smaller, finer work, I cut the tip off a corner of a ziploc bag, put some frosting in, and pipe it onto the cake.
This was my Saturday cake. I baked both cakes earlier in the week so that they would be cooled when I needed them. I just kept them in the fridge, as they are mostly beans and eggs! For this cake, I used the White Bean Cupcake recipe from the Nourish cookbook. Those made the top and bottom layers. The middle layer was Black Bean Cake. Between each layer, I used the Fudgy Mocha Frosting from the football cake. Then I whipped heavy cream with cream cheese and sweetened it, for the outside of the cake. As you can see, I didn’t soften my cream cheese sufficiently to make a smooth finish! I was exhausted by that time. 🙂 But do soften your cream cheese in hot water until it’s warmer than room temp. It works so much better!
Gotta run. Babies calling.