Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The View From My Kitchen Window April 22, 2014

I have noticed something interesting today. 

Rainy days are not as gloomy in the Spring and Summer because there is so much green.

It makes me feel as though I am back in western North Carolina.

And that's a good thing!






Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Wrap-Up

The grief of Friday.

The emptiness (and anticipation) of Saturday.

The overwhelming joy of Easter Sunday!

“Why do you seek the living One among the dead?  He is not here, but He has risen." 
(Luke 24:5-6 NASB) 


I hope that you made time to let it soak in this year.  I hope that you found a church that preaches the Bible yesterday.  I hope that the pastor of the church you attended spoke with the same passion that we found at our church.  I hope that after worship you were able to look around you and find the thrill of all that God has accomplished in your world over the past year.  

2013 was a challenging year for our extended family.  There was a stroke (in my generation, not my parents'), two of my in-laws lost fathers, there was the tree-incident, little Judah's birth and rushing over to the NICU across town, and there was a cancer diagnosis.  In the middle of all of that, Mr. Marvelous had a back injury that kept him off work for about 6 weeks, pneumonia, a probable torn meniscus in his knee, and his on-going, monthly bout of respiratory infection.  

BUT GOD....

My brother is completely healed from his stroke. 

That's John on the right

 The in-laws have the comfort of the assurance of heaven for their fathers.

Matt is so much recovered from the tree-incident that he is back to working on trees.

Judah was home by Thanksgiving and is doing great.  The doctors find no residual effects from his early birth and illness.

Nancy is half-way through chemotherapy.  Not only does she look great, she was able to hostess the Easter gathering this year!


Complete with the red shoes!


Mr. Marvelous is doing well this month and has found some good doctors who are a tremendous help to him.  


And we are thankful for all of it.

But I can tell you right here and right now, that no matter what, whether we had seen all these amazing miracles and all these evidences of grace poured out on us or not, God is good.

It's not about what we have or what we get.  It is all about the eternal hope we have through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  My family does not lead a charmed life.  We have had 
(and continue to have!) our struggles and trials.  But in every trial, every hard situation, every dark moment, we have the confidence and assurance that a loving God is in control of every aspect of our lives.  To quote the hymn, "Our hope is built on nothing less, than Jesus' blood and righteousness".  Not on having good times, good health, financial success.  Only on Jesus' blood and righteousness.  


  Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.  I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.  I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:11-13  NASB

May His peace, His mercy, and His grace fill your hearts and your homes this year!


 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday

Good Friday.


But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
(Romans 5:8 NASB)


 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
(I John 4:10 ESV)


And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.”
(John 12:32 NASB) 

 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
(II Corinthians 5:21 ESV) 
 

 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit.  And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth shook and the rocks were split.
(Matthew 27:51 NASB)





I wanted a picture to post today to capture the visual of Good Friday.  I could not find one that did not have rays of light shining on the cross.  As I looked through what was available, I realized that as followers of Jesus, we seem to want to rush from the silence and darkness of Friday, the despair of Saturday and get right on over to the glory and the joy of Sunday.

My prayer for you today is that you will stop.  That you will allow yourself to experience the grief, the pain and the desperation of Friday.  I believe that if we will keep ourselves from rushing away from Friday then we will be able to more fully experience the joy, the glory and the wonder of what is coming. 

Be still today.  Meditate on the day.  Be reminded of what Jesus did for us.  Remember that it was done in order that the Father would be glorified.  Follow His example.  Seek God's glory in all of your life.  No matter the cost.






 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Only in Alabama

Or: A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words



I went to Walmart last week.....




















Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Names

Holy Week.  

It is a week of remembering prophecies that are fulfilled in the Messiah.  It is a week of remembering the promises that God has made to people.  Some of the promises, for those who are surrendered to Him, are pleasant to look at.  Other promises, for those who refuse to acknowledge Him, are terrifying. 

This week I am reading through the book of Isaiah.  There is a balance of the terror and the comfort in this book.  There are a lot of different names and descriptions of both God the Father and God the Son, my Messiah.  I would encourage you to read and find the ones that pierce your heart.

Here is the one that I found yesterday in Isaiah 33:6.  This one I think will stay with me the same way that the name I found for Jesus in Luke 1:78 has. 

The Stability of your times
 
Remember that when the world threatens to unbalance and undermine you.

His peace to your homes.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Monday, April 14, 2014

Food Preservation: Eggs

Oh boy, do I ever have eggs.  

I currently have eight Buff Orpingtons.  I'm not sure if the "Old Girl" ~ aka Penny Purdy ~ is laying but the other seven are. I also have eight White Leghorns.  They lay almost every day.

The other Leghorn is in the hen house laying an egg.  Of course.


My daily average is around a dozen eggs right now.  That's EVERY SINGLE DAY.  So even though I have several people with whom I share my eggs, periodically I get a little bit of a build-up in the refrigerator.


Just in case you are having trouble counting, that is thirteen dozen right there.  Ten days' worth.  AFTER I gave away three dozen yesterday (one box to a total stranger at Aldi's.  I was desperate).  I know the math doesn't add up, but there are days when I get a total of fifteen eggs. 

I know what to do with an excessive amount of beans, squash, cucumbers, peppers and tomatoes (and by the way Mr. Marvelous planted sixty tomato plants this past week.  Help!).

I'm big on preserving food, and I despise waste.  I don't mind spending several days a week in my canning kitchen.  But here's the problem.  Eggs really do not freeze well and you can forget about canning them.  My flyers are not getting me any egg-selling business.  What's a girl to do??

Then I had a brainstorm.  Why not bake up a dozen or so pound cakes and four or five fruit cakes (we like them, believe it or not).  They freeze well.  If the power goes out and we don't have a freezer for a few days they won't spoil.  I will always have something to pull out for company dessert.  While it will mean a little extra butter, cake flour, and whipping cream this month, I have enough stores in my home pantry that I can afford those extras.

Therefore, I hereby declare this week Official Pound Cake Week at the Akin Family Homestead.  We'll see if I can make a years' worth and get them in the freezer.

Come visit!

I'll add a piece of pound cake to the picture!