So I’ve had my big, fancy camera, as the girls call it, for a few years now. I’m still trying to learn all it can do.
I’m also still taking pictures like a house afire.
Lately I’ve really been musing on several different topics as my mind tends to flit here and there. You never know what will come out of my mouth because I never know what will pop into my head.
I’ve been pondering the most this idea of Crazy Love. No, not the book by Frances Chan which is (and has been) sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read, but the whole idea of loving like crazy. Loving when I feel just so give out, so empty. Loving big when I feel so needy inside.
It’s definitely living counter-culture. Even in the church. We just don’t live like that. We think we have to know what it feels like be loved, we have to always be full of love before we can pour any out.
“You can’t give what you don’t have” is only true of the tangible. I really believe Jesus not only calls us to live life, live love loud and out-loud He expects us to do it. Loving people isn’t an option.
Claiming we don’t have the ability or capability to love others isn’t an option either, at least not for those indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God. We have to live love because Love lives IN us!
Think about that for a pair of moments.
Love. Lives. Inside. Of. Me.
Love Lives. Inside. Of. You.
You see, if you are indwelt with the Holy Spirit you are indwelt by Love. Because we are told in 1 John God IS Love. (1 John 4:8)
That’s different than being told “God loves”.
So even when we feel all-give out, and haven’t a clue what it feels like to be loved at all, or how to love, or too needy of love from someone else, we CAN love others. Always. All the time. Whether we feel able to or not. We can. And we have to.
So since I’ve been pondering this, I’ve decided to bring back Go MAD Mondays.
Go MAD Mondays….when we consciously look for ways to love loud and out-loud on another. It could be someone you know, it could be a complete stranger. It could be paying for the car behind you in line, or the carS behind you in line. It could be walking into a grocery store and finding someone with a full grocery cart and paying for the whole thing. It could be slipping your debit card into the slot at the gas pump for someone else before they get the chance. Or letting someone go ahead of you in line. Or it could be smiling at someone.
Or shock! It could be responding in patience and love when you’re in a hurry and stressed. Responding in kindness when someone else makes a mistake and inconveniences you.
Isn’t that the way to really live thanksgiving? To really live Love? To pour Him out to a world that is so desperate to know they are loved, that someone sees them.
We will find the more love we pour out the more love we feel, the more we feel loved.
“…for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you”
Psalm 116:7b (nasb)
Which is somewhat similar to Winner Winner Chicken dinner, but different.
A friend of mine is, in my humble (hah!) estimation, a wonderful cook. I’ve gotten a few recipes sent me in a text message and each one is wonderful. These recipes can’t be found anywhere because I’m pretty dang sure he made them up.
In his head.
I’ve long been of a competitive nature. And well, two can play at that game, right?
Normally the first time I make a recipe I follow it exactly. Except when I don’t realize I don’t have a certain ingredient until I need to put it in. I substitute. Often I’ll put supper on the table and announce, “I followed the recipe exactly, except it called for this and I only had that. So I used it instead. Oh and it said to do this, but I did something else entirely. If it’s really bad, we’ll get pizza.”
After trying some of the recipes from my friend, I thought to myself, “Self, you could do this.”
Last week I set out to come up with my own chicken recipe. And I think I did.
Now, I’m not going to share the whole recipe with you here and now. It needs a little more tweaking. But it’s close.
Lest you think in the above that I used coconut, nope. I didn’t.
I do normally use provolone cheese with this dish, though. Today though I realized too late that my offspring had eaten nearly all the provolone so we used pepper jack instead.
So really all I’m doing is tempting you. I will tell you this, though, it’s good!
Leave me a comment if you’d like to be a recipe tester for this and as I get the kinks worked out, I’ll be in touch.
for growing things.
I feel myself waking up slowly. Much like the tulips and irises I love so much. Their bulbs lie dormant all Fall and winter, coming to life again in the Spring.
Plants that are kept inside are placed outside in a sunny spot. I think they are as happy as I am to be outside in the sunshine.
I think this time of year awakens in all of us the realization that we first birthed in a garden. Our fingers itch to get out and dig in the dirt.
It’s too early by a few weeks for me to dig in dirt and plant anything. So I contented myself yesterday with transplanting some plants I’d gotten over Christmas.
They looked much better when I first brought them home. But it was obvious to everyone that they had outgrown their pot and needed a new home. Their leaves had fallen off, some were curling. Some of them looked like they had been through the war and had barely escaped with their very lives.
Most of them have been rescued and really should all be named Lazarus, as I’ve brought them back from the dead. The girls have named all of them, and alas none of them have yet to be named Lazarus.
I’m anxious to get my garden planted, more than anxious for the flowers to bud and bloom. I’m actually looking forward to learning how to prune the roses I planted last May. Talk about looking sad, those are the saddest looking sticks with golden brown leaves.
I’m finding myself always awakening more and more to God’ pruning. I read Kathi Lipp’s book, Clutter Free, a few months ago. I’ve dreamed of a simpler life, a minimalist lifestyle. I’ve gone through piles and stashes, I’ve cleared out belongings. I’ve gotten rid of things that in previous purges I’d held on to like a drunken man holds on to his last beer.
One thing that has been hitting home more and more as Spring comes closer and closer is that more than I need a clutter-free material life, I need a clutter-free heart. I need to get rid of old hurts, hang-ups, and opinions.
I need desperately to allow the soil of my heart to be prepared. I’m totally forlorn if God doesn’t meet me here and prune away the dead parts of my life.
I need new growth. I need to grow and change to be the woman, not that I want to be, but that God created me to be. I need to change my heart of stone into a heart of flesh. I need to prepare the soil of my soul to meet with the God who created the world. Who created me.
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing." John 15:5
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