"Joy is not the absence of suffering. It is the presence of God."

Friday, March 27, 2015

Under Pressure

There's a new love in my life.

Actually, in my kitchen.  Sometimes, I'm embarrassed to talk it about though, for fear it makes me sound like I'm a grandma.

My husband found it for me.  He's a sucker for anything that sounds like a good deal.  Salesmen see him coming.  For this reason I get a little antsy when he visits EBay or there's an unexpected knock at the door.  And I keep the remote clear of the shopping channel. But somehow, we fell upon an infomercial several weeks ago.  It was a lazy Saturday morning and I'll blame it on the fact that I hadn't had enough coffee.

Because, I have to admit, even I got sucked in to the selling points.

"Dinner in 20 minutes?"

"All day flavor in less than an hour"

Tim called to see the cost, not wanting to wait until the "but wait there's more...."  They didn't answer so he hung up.  I googled it.  Then, miraculously they called back.

Discovering I could drive to the nearest store and purchase it gave us negotiation power.  We ended up getting our power pressure cooker with free shipping and accessories.

Last weekend we tried it out for the first time.  I made Tim help me.

Normally I'm very confident in the kitchen but pressure cookers take me back to my childhood and the stern warnings of my grandma that if I came near it, my skin would peel off.  Now she didn't nearly give that graphic of a picture but that's where my imagination went.  When the whistle would steam, I'd scamper to the other room.

But together we tackled it and put a solid brick of frozen deer roast inside the metal container.  15 minutes later, we were enjoying moist succulent roast.  I was amazed!

I've been a lover of slow cookers for years and literally own more than I have storage space for.  And I'll probably still turn to them for an easy meal to come home to.  However when the pressures of the day leave even a planner like me at a loss for what's for dinner, this gal is turning on the power!


It really is incredible the transformation that takes place when you toss in a frozen, jumbled mess and end up with something wonderful to serve your family, just because of pressure.

And it kinda reminds me of life.  Because it's when we're put in moments of pressure, that we're shaped and transformed.  It is when we're under pressure, that we're most likely to give up - or give it God.  If we do the latter, He'll turn our mess into something beautiful.

Going in, we might find it hard to believe that any good can come out, but God never falters.  His Power will transform us under pressure.  His Power always, always brings good.

You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open 
and shows its true colors.  So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. 
Let it do its work so you become mature and 
well-developed, not deficient in any way.

If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. 
You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. 
Ask boldly, believing, without a second thought.
James 1:2-5 The Message 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Sunshine Therapy

No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. -Proverb



Spring is here!  And I'm breathing a sigh of relief....

It may not have been the sunshiny ringing in of the calendar I'd hoped for, but the milestone had me smiling inside just the same.

After the winter we've had, I think everyone has been anxiously anticipating the season.  In the past several days, we've had sneak peeks of sunshine.  On those days, no matter where I am, there is a visible improvement of mood and attitude. Though there's research to show our body's need for vitamin D, I think the sun provides nourishment to the heart and soul as well.

Yes, I'm sure in a few months the majority will be complaining about the heat, but for now, I'm eager to see a skip in everyone's step as we enter the season.

Myself, I've been in a bit of a writing slump.  Very unusual for me not to have something to say.  I've started and tossed more posts than I can ever recall.

For awhile I blamed it on the testimony I was preparing.  Knowing it would be the first time I publicly and verbally spoke of our journey, I was a mess of jumbled and nervous jitters.  But a week has come and gone since sharing with a room full of women.

Though I came home on a high and a lifted sense of purpose, at the computer, I'm still drawing a blank.  It hasn't helped that my blog has had some technical difficulties and Google has not been my friend.  Nor that a few loved ones are going through difficult times, both family and friends.

The month has just been unusually hard and I've found it a struggle at times to remain hopefull.

So Spring's timing, much like God's, is perfect and wonderful.  Sunshine is just the needed dose of therapy I know so many are craving.

And yet, when the clouds come in, necessary for each spring shower, may we be reminded of God's love and promises to us.

Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; 
his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, 
as the spring rains that water the earth.”

Happy Spring, friends!

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