The Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

GOD’S 2 CENTS

What does the Bible have to say?

Image

The Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut

This message was brought by Pastor Tim Schwindt Sunday morning Jan. 27th. Him and a panel of 3 other Pastors: Senior Pastor Rick Boyes, Pastor Dave Andrews & Pastor Blair Mercer spoke on 4 World Topics.

The Other 3 Topics:

  1. The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy (Pastor Dave) ~ (BLOG here: The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy    )
  2. The Teacher Strike (Pastor Rick) ~ (BLOG here:  The Teacher Strike   )
  3. Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters (Pastor Blair) ~ (BLOG here:   Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters   )

For each topic a list of scriptures were given to use to reference. Here’s the PDF of Questions & Scripture References To All “4″ Topics:  Sermons ~ God’s Two Cents

 

PASTOR TIM’S SERMON NOTES

The Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut

On the morning of December 14, in Newtown, Connecticut, 20-year-old Adam Lanza took one of his mother’s rifles, walked into her bedroom where she was still in bed, and shot her in the head 4 times. He then took her car, drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School, where he had attended years earlier. He walked into the school and shot the principal and the school psychologist, killing them. An employee ran through the halls warning of a gunman on the loose, and someone switched on the intercom, alerting people in the building. Teachers locked their doors and ordered children to hide as shots echoed through the building. Lanza was able to get into a first-grade classroom, and proceeded to murder the teacher and 15 of the 16 children there. Most of them were shot multiple times at close range. The one child who was not shot managed to survive by playing dead and remaining still until the shooting stopped, at which point she ran from the school, covered in the blood of her classmates, and was the first child to escape the building. When she reached her mother, she said, “Mommy, I’m okay, but all my friends are dead.” Lanza then entered another classroom, where the teacher had hidden the children, and told the shooter that they were in the school auditorium. But several of the children then came out of their hiding place out of fear and tried to run for safety, and were shot dead. The teacher tried to put herself between her students and Lanza, but he fatally shot her. A teacher’s aide who worked with special-needs students shielded a six-year-old boy with her body, trying to protect him from the bullets that killed them both. After Lanza realized that he had been spotted by a police officer who had entered the building, he shot himself in the head, taking his own life. By the time it was all over, Lanza had killed 20 students ages 6-7, and six adults. The incident became the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history, next to the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre.

1. Why is there so much violence, and will it get even worse than it is now? What does God think about it? Where was God when this happened? Did He care about those children and families as much as the families themselves did?

Genesis 6:11-13 ~ Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth.”

2 Timothy 3:1-4 ~ There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.

Psalm 10:12-18 ~ You, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. Break the arm of the wicked man; call the evildoer to account for his wickedness that would not otherwise be found out.

2. Did God love Adam Lanza as much as He loved the children Lanza murdered? Do you swallow hard and say “yes” because you think that’s the correct biblical thing to say, even though you can’t imagine how God ever could? What would be your reaction if I suggested that God did love him, but then hated him because of his wickedness? How are we supposed to feel?

Psalm 11:4-7 ~ The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion. On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot. For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face.

John 3:16-19 ~ “For God so loved the world… Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.”

3. What should our response be to this tragedy? What can we do about this, if anything?

Proverbs 24:10-12 ~ If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength! Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?

4. What are the right ways for us to protect ourselves or others? Should no one ever have access to a gun, in order to prevent someone like Adam Lanza from obtaining one? Or is it true that the only answer to a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun? That we should allow good people to bear arms, in order to adequately defend themselves and others? Is there a difference between defence and revenge and justice?

Isaiah 10:1-3 ~ “Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless. What will you do on the day of reckoning, when disaster comes from afar?”

Romans 12:17-21 ~ Do not repay anyone evil for evil. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

5. Were you glad that Adam Lanza killed himself? Were you especially glad that he did that rather than shoot more children? Would you have felt even more sense of justice if one of the police officers had been able to shoot him dead before he took his own life? What is the appropriate action and response to a man like that? If he hadn’t taken his own life, what would the right consequence or punishment be for him? And would that punishment be better than him taking his own life? Is capital punishment biblically and morally acceptable, or not? Is it ever right to kill in certain circumstances, or is it always murder?

Genesis 9:5-6 ~ “From each human being, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being. Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.”

Matthew 5:21-22 ~ “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a fellow brother or sister will be subject to judgment.”

1 John 3:11-15 ~ For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates a fellow brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.

Additional Scriptures: Exodus 21:12-14; Proverbs 21:7; Hosea 9:15-17; Leviticus 24:17; Isaiah 59:1-9; Isaiah 60:18-19; Matthew 15:18-19; John 13:34; Ephesians 4:26-27, 32; Colossians 3:13

Advertisements

The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

GOD’S 2 CENTS

What does the Bible have to say?

Image

The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy ~ Ontario

This message was brought by Pastor Dave Andrews Sunday morning Jan. 27th. Him and a panel of 3 other Pastors: Senior Pastor Rick Boyes, Pastor Tim Schwindt & Pastor Blair Mercer spoke on 4 World Topics.

The Other 3 Topics:

  1. The Teacher Strike (Pastor Rick) ~ (BLOG here:  The Teacher Strike   )
  2. The Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut (Pastor Tim(BLOG here: Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut     )
  3. Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters (Pastor Blair)(BLOG here:  Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters    )

For each topic a list of scriptures were given to use to reference. Here’s the PDF of Questions & Scripture References To All “4″ Topics:  Sermons ~ God’s Two Cents

PASTOR DAVE’S SERMON NOTES

The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy

The headlines on Nov 21st read as follows:

The RCMP announced today Joe Fontana, the Mayor of London, Ontario, has been charged with three Criminal Code offences. All charges spring from an investigation of a federal cheque used to pay the deposit on his son Michael’s wedding reception in 2005. The charges of breach of trust by a public officer, fraud and uttering forged documents were filed against Fontana Wednesday.

  1. What was your initial reaction?
  2. What does the scriptures say about those in authority?

Peter says to the church ~ to you and me, 1Peter 2:11-12,17  “you are foreigners and strangers on this earth ~ this world is not your home” …

In North America, we live in a Democracy ~ it’s the only system or way of governance most of us here this morning have experienced. But as Christians, we are called to live by Kingdom principles. Jesus Christ is the King and we are a part of His Kingdom.

Luke 17:21 ~ “ Jesus said “the kingdom of God is in your midst.”

 God’s Word is the manual on how to live according to Kingdom values and principles. That’s why scripture says in :

Romans 12:1-2 ~  Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

Philippians 2:5 ~ Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,

1. What does the bible say about those in authority over us?

Romans 13:1-2 ~   There is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.

Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.

All authority is established by God.

 

2. What is our responsibility as Christians to those in authority?

~ Romans 13:1 ~ ­­Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities…

“Let everyone” ~ the Greek word used here for “everyone”, actually means “everyone” – no exemption.

~ So everyone is to “be subject” to those in authority ~ That means  to voluntarily place ourselves under submission to authorities with the full intent of  obeying them.

~ And the reason, is because God has appointed all governing authorities in our lives.

We are also to pray for them.

1 Timothy 2:1-3 ~ that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority,

1 Peter 2:17 ~ Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honour the emperor.

So we are to be subject to authority ~ voluntarily submissive ~ we are to pray for them – and we are to show them respect.

Again ~ why? Because God put them there.

3. When leaders make mistakes or we disagree with them, or they are ungodly, does our response change depending on their character?

Scripture is full of examples of ungodly rulers in authority over Christians and the Children of Israel.

When Paul wrote those words, in Romans 13 ~ that all authority is from God and we are to submit to those in authority –Paul was referring to the Romans. Not only were they very ungodly and corrupt, they were also very harsh in their treatment to Christians.

When Peter penned the words “…honor the emperor” ~ in 1 Peter 2:17, he was referring to the King who had James killed and was persecuting the believers of his day.

Example #1: King Agrippa & Caesar

1 Peter 2:11-16Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, or to governors,

It’s not about the person in authority over you as much as it is the One Who put them there!

Example #2: Pharaoh

~ I’ve included a number of scriptures in your notes regarding the Ch of Israel and Pharaoh . (– Ex 9:16; Romans 9:17; John 8:17; Gen 15:13; Gen 45:4-8; Ps 105:16-19; Ex 1:8-14;Ex 9:16; Ex 9:27; )

~ Pharaoh ~ was brutal in his treatment of Israel, he was defiant and arrogant with no regard for human life or the Lord.

~ Where did his authority come from?

~ How did God’s people end up under him?

~ Was it an accident?

~ Great Bible study to do on your own.

~ Follow God’s involvement from Joseph being sold into slavery in Egypt ~ to his imprisonment – to Joseph’s part in being in the right place at the right time for his entire family …

~ And then years later ~ under a different Pharaoh who was cruel – investigate what God said about His purposes for that evil Pharaoh and how that was all a part of God’s plan.

 

CLOSING

Respecting and submitting to the position of authority

is our privilege and responsibility as followers of Jesus Christ. 

Trusting in God Who is over all authority.

The Teacher Strike ~ Ontario

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

GOD’S 2 CENTS

What does the Bible have to say?

1297345334798_ORIGINAL

The Teacher Strike ~ Ontario

This message was brought by our Senior Pastor Rick Boyes Sunday morning Jan. 27th. Him and a panel of 3 other Pastors: Pastor Tim Schwindt, Pastor Blair Mercer & Pastor Dave Andrews spoke on 4 “World Topics”.

The Other 3 Topics:

  1. The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy (Pastor Dave) ~ (BLOG here:  The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy    )
  2. The Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut (Pastor Tim(BLOG here: Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut    )
  3. Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters (Pastor Blair) ~ (BLOG here:   Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters  )

We often ask questions, presume, accept, reject and guess about many things in our world today. It was wonderful to hear them all clarify, encourage and empower us that morning.

God’s divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness….he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” ~ Pastor Rick Boyes

For each topic a list of scriptures were given to use to reference. Here’s the PDF of Questions & Scripture References To All “4” Topics:  Sermons ~ God’s Two Cents

Questions & Scripture References  ~ The Teacher Strike

  1.  Is it acceptable to defend your rights as a citizen or within your society (work, neighbourhood, community)?
  2.  Should Christians ever strike or protest? 
  3.  Does the bible say anything about standing up for yourself or others? 

1 Peter 2:18-20 ~ Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 

Luke 19:11-27 ~ As they heard these things, he proceeded to tell a parable, because he was near to Jerusalem, and because they supposed that the kingdom of God was to appear immediately. He said therefore, “A nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and then return. Calling ten of his servants, he gave them ten minas, and said to them, ‘Engage in business until I come.’ But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, ‘We do not want this man to reign over us.’ When he returned, having received the kingdom, he ordered these servants to whom he had given the money to be called to him, that he might know what they had gained by doing business.” 

Ephesians 6:5 ~ Slaves, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ.

2 Corinthians 3:17 ~ Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

Titus 2:9-10 ~ Slaves are to be submissive to their own masters in everything; they are to be well-pleasing, not argumentative, not pilfering, but showing all good faith, so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour.

1 Timothy 6:1-2 ~ Let all who are under a yoke as slaves regard their own masters as worthy of all honour, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved. Teach and urge these things. 

Colossians 4:1-18 ~ Masters, treat your slaves justly and fairly, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven. Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. 

Colossians 3:22 ~ Slaves, obey in everything those who are your earthly masters, not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord. 

Romans 13:1-7 ~ Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honour, then honour.

Ecclesiastes 5:8 ~ If you see in a province the oppression of the poor and the violation of justice and righteousness, do not be amazed at the matter, for the high official is watched by a higher, and there are yet higher ones over them. 

Psalm 43:1 ~ Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people, from the deceitful and unjust man deliver me! 

Psalm 82:3-4 ~ “How long will you defend the unjust and show partiality to the wicked? Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” 

Isaiah 1:17 ~ Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.

 

PASTOR RICK’S SERMON NOTES

~ As we begin a new component to weekend messages….we’ve entitled it God’s two cents…

~ Everyday there are events and actions occurring within our world….society…our city…

~ Stuff that greatly impacts our lives…stirs our emotions…causes us to think thoughts that surprise even ourselves…things that cause us to question…presume …accept, reject and guess…

~ And all the while God has given us his final word on all that is necessary to live right..honour God and glorify his name in our community…

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness….he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge;  and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.

 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind,….. forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins. (1Peter 1:3-9)

~ And so throughout the year between our series when significant events that effect our lives occur within society…we will pause and ask the question… What does the Bible say?

~ I must confess to you my concern that among those of us who call ourselves Christians…we seem to be so quick to spout off our own thoughts, feeling and opinions on whatever social media before us…

~ And yet, rarely to I find any of our rants beginning with… “as a Christian, I believe the Bible wants us to think…feel…act…

~ So that’s what these weekend messages will be about…things that are happening in our world and what’s God two cents on the matter…???

~ Agree or disagree…we are not going to make personal commentary nor opinion on issues that are complicated and controversial…and we are not trying to solve the issue or bring all the answers to your questions…

~ We only want to share God’s two cents and then allow you to decide if what God thinks has any bearing on your thoughts, feelings and actions as a Christian…

~ If you find yourself saying….I don’t care…I still think…or that’s not fair or right…

~ Let’s remember….God is not ever wrong and His Word is always true….the Bly ones who are ever wrong are us!

Folks, it just seems to me that if we are followers of Christ and His Word…then his two cents need to carry more weight than what I think or feel or what the latest Youtube video or Twitter fee  is suggesting…

~ Today, we have 4 things that occurred in 2012 that seem to stand out and will give us a good idea of what these weekend messages will look like…normally we will deal with only one at on a weekend and therefore of course in more depth….

1. Pastor Blair.…Hurricane Sandy…what does the bible say about natural disasters?

2. Pastor Tim….Sandy Hook Connecticut shooting….what does the Bible say about why there is so much violence and why doesn’t God do something?

3. Pastor Dave….the controversy regarding Mayor Fontana and what the Bible has to say about integrity…both Ours…and those in authority over us

4. Last, I will look at Bill 115 and the struggle between the teachers/their union and the province of Ontario…asking what the Bible has to say about personal rights…should Christians strike, protest or stand up against man or gov’t.

~ YES, some of you may think us crazy…but, if the Bible doesn’t speak to us today …about real life…and real events…then maybe it doesn’t speak at all!

~ And if it does speak…as Christians, maybe we need to listen?!?!?!?

~ Lets get started: Blair…Tim…Dave…(timer – 8 mins each) 🙂

 

BACKGROUND ON THE TEACHERS STRIKE 

~ The Putting Students First Act (formerly known as Bill 115) was an act passed by the legislative assembly of Ontario in Sept this past year.

~ The law allows the provincial government to set rules that local school boards must adhere to when negotiating with local unions …and to impose a collective agreement on the board, and it’s employee’s…or teachers…

~ This bill also limits the legality of teachers’ unions and support staff going on strike.

~ Collective bargaining is ongoing in an attempt to have the government’s education partners reach agreements that respect local circumstances while remaining within limitations established in the legislation.

~ Many union leaders, teachers and those who sympathize with them believe that Bill 115 is a threat to all unionized employees as well as democratic rights and values….

~ Because of its power to limit strike action and impose a collective agreement without negotiation….meaning that this is just the beginning and they are probably right….

~ Protests have been ongoing though out Ontario in an attempt to bring attention to this Bill and it effects to teachers…the education system and to our children and families.

~ Protesting has for the most been very peaceful with a work to rule approach that limits all extra-curricular activities for students before and after school…filed trips, sports teams and any activity outside the parameters of the teachers job requirement.

 ~ Much more could be said, but this is the highlight of a very delicate and difficult situation for all involved…

~ The emotions are intense…the opinions are vast and diverse…

~ We have teachers in our midst today…and obviously a host of parents, and children who are affected by some of the choices and decisions that are being  brought forth…

~ Let me say two things before we look to the scriptures….

1 ~ Teachers, we love you …we bless you and we thank you for the great job that you do and we recognize that this has been very hard on you…we pray that this matter comes to a compromised resolve…that allows you to get back to doing what you love most…teaching our children!!!

2 ~ Let me also say that I appreciate the incredible difficult and unpopular position that govt finds themselves in trying to give us as citizens the best quality of life that anyone could ask for on this planet…and in doing so …given the task of trying to find a way to pay for it all…and keep us happy!

~ We have a massive deficit and the Government is trying to balance the books….the Public sector pay is therefore one area that has come under the microscope….and it won’t end with the teachers…it’s just the beginning…

~ We need to be careful when we point fingers at those in authority who vote into power… for shouldering all of the blame….

~ There is hardly a gov’t …agency or nation that isn’t struggling with very, very difficult choices that in spite even my own arm-chair coaching…I don’t envy any of them!!!

~ Just consider the banter and debate of our own city this past week on 2013 budget

 So What Does The Bible Really Say About Striking/ Protests…standing up for your rights…standing up for the rights of others?

~ Well…perhaps to state the obvious….

~ It’s really hard to try and justify sabotage, arson, destruction of property, riots or any form of violence as an appeal to Christ’s role as a liberator…

~ Revolutions destroy society and kill people… my focus is not on world issues…totalitarian gov’t’s… the sex trade… 3rd world labour laws… genocide… peace-keeping interventions… diamond mines/oil fields or ocean access corridors….nor is it about gender-oppressive states…

~ When we speak of oppressed people….we don’t need a theology of revolution, inciting violence…

~ What we need is a Theology of peace ……which is found only in Jesus Christ….and this is an entirely different discussion…

~ We have to acknowledge that in our current North American governmental systems…in our democratic society…civil disobedience…public protests and strikes are considered a valid method of speaking to government….

~ The Bible was written during a different day and a different understanding of govt…there was no such thing as a democracy or rights of the people….so context is important…

~ A quotation from the Declaration of Independence of the United States is instructive on this point and the spirit of Canada’s constitution reflects similar values…

. . . We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; that, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it and to institute a new government. . . .

 

~ And so in a modern western democracy a good citizen is one who calls the government to account for its actions and who, through the political process, works to make the government better….

So what does the Bible say to our personal response ?

Ephesians 6:5 ~ Slaves, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ.

2 Corinthians 3:17 ~ Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

Titus 2:9-10 ~ Slaves are to be submissive to their own masters in everything; they are to be well-pleasing, not argumentative, not pilfering, but showing all good faith, so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour.

 1 Timothy 6:1-2 ~ Let all who are under a yoke as slaves regard their own masters as worthy of all honour, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved. Teach and urge these things.

Colossians 4:1-18 ~ Masters, treat your slaves justly and fairly, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven. Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.

Colossians 3:22 ~ Slaves, obey in everything those who are your earthly masters, not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord.

1 Peter 2:18-20 ~ Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God.

 

~ Now consider this…if this what the Bible calls for during a time of slavery….how much more does it speak to us!!

How else should Christians respond?

“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority, resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgement on themselves…Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake.”  (Rom 13:1-5)

 

What should people do if they have been treated unfairly?

~ The Lord Jesus taught that we should always pray and never give up….

~ In the parable of the persistent widow, He taught that even an unjust judge will do what is right in response to persistent prayer and pressure….

Jesus told his disciples a story about how they should keep on praying and never give up: In a town there was once a judge who didn’t fear God or care about people.  In that same town there was a widow who kept going to the judge and saying, “Make sure that I get fair treatment in court.”

For a while the judge refused to do anything. Finally, he said to himself, “Even though I don’t fear God or care about people, I will help this widow because she keeps on bothering me. If I don’t help her, she will wear me out.”

The Lord said: Think about what that crooked judge said. Won’t God protect his chosen ones who pray to him day and night? Won’t he be concerned for them? He will surely hurry and help them. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find on this earth anyone with faith? Luke 18:1-8

~ God hears our prayers….Prov. 21 says, The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

~ We need to all Christians to be informed, involved, and interceding…. Prayer is our foundation for action.

~ Jesus said, …“You are the salt of the earth…you are the light of the world…let your light shine before men that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in Heaven.” Matt 5:13-16.

 

And yet, Christian protest has a place:

“Who will rise up for Me against the wicked? Who will take a stand for Me against evildoers?” (Ps 94:16)

~ As ambassadors of Christ, we are to be salt and light in society – salt bringing preservation (of morals) and light bringing the hope and truth of the Lord Jesus Christ thus dispelling darkness and evil.

To him who knows to do good and does not do it…it is sin.” (James 4:17)

~ It’s ok to stand up for righteousness…it’s ok to stand against injustice… but remember to do so prayerfully in wisdom, humility and order

Psalm 82:3-4 ~ “How long will you defend the unjust and show partiality to the wicked? Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

Isaiah 1:17 ~  Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.

~ But, God help us if out attitude is not in honour of authority over us and we become poisoned by our anger and judgement…

 Romans 13:1-7 ~ Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

 

~ There are many more more scriptures that speak to this topic…

~ Being agents of peace is the priority for Christians….

~ Standing for righteousness, justice and freedom is our calling…

~ But it must be exercised with deep humility, respect, honor and submission…

 

It is important for all of us to remember how easily and quickly we can become captives of the system of thought and economics that prevails at present in our society. By God’s grace we are called from conformity to the transformation of our lives by the renewal of mind and spirit to know and do the will of God. The potential for good of such obedience is as limitless as God’s love and grace, and God’s peace will flow from His church like a river to bless the nations.

 ~ Duane Heffelbower ~

 

Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

GOD’S 2 CENTS

What does the Bible have to say?

150548_522416177788500_1268061375_n

 A girl stands among homes devastated by fire and the effects of Hurricane Sandy at the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York October 30, 2012.

Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters

This message was brought by our Pastor Blair Mercer Sunday morning Jan. 27th. Him and a panel of 3 other Pastors: Pastor Tim SchwindtSenior Pastor Rick Boyes & Pastor Dave Andrews spoke on 4 World Topics.

For each topic a list of scriptures were given to use to reference. Here’s the PDF of Questions & Scripture References To All “4″ Topics:  Sermons ~ God’s Two Cents

The Other 3 Topics:

  1. The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy (Pastor Dave) ~ (BLOG here:  The Mayor Joe Fontana Controversy    )
  2. The Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut (Pastor Tim(BLOG here: Shooting Tragedy In Connecticut     )
  3. The Teacher Strike (Pastor Rick) ~ (BLOG here:  The Teacher Strike   )

Why are natural disasters happening?

  • Scientists have long struggled with a link between individual events and climate change but they’re now sure it’s boosting the odds of extreme weather.   
  • Nearly 400 experts from around the world produced a report with evidence human activity and an increase in greenhouse gas emissions is influencing major climate events.   
  • They are saying we can’t explain these events by natural variability alone, they’re just too rare, too uncommon.
  • The scientists studied 50 years of data and found last year’s Texas heat wave was 20 times more likely to happen because of climate change than natural variation in weather systems,
  • And the United Kingdom’s record warm November – the second hottest since records began in 1659 – was 60 times more likely.
  • As we populate every corner of the planet in poorly constructed and crowded cities, along the coasts and fault lines, we increasingly expose ourselves to dangerous odds in which our chance of losing only increases.
  • But if you accept that pollution is a symptom of population, then natural disasters are too.

 

What does the bible say about natural disasters?

  • “He (God) makes the sun to rise on both good and bad people. And He sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong.” Matthew 5:45.
    • Storms effect us all, good or bad
  • So Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day, and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel. (1 Samuel 12:18)
  • God is big and power ful and controls the storms
  • Be merciful to me, O God; be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, until the destroying storms pass by. (Psalm 57:1)
  • Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (Matthew 14:29-33)
    • God is in the storm with us, not apart
  • “O afflicted one, storm-tossed and not comforted, behold, I will set your stones in antimony, and lay your foundations with sapphires. (Isaiah 54:11)
  • “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.  (Matthew 24:3-8)
  • For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. (Romans 8:19-21)

Questions about natural disasters:

  • What are natural disasters?
  • Are natural disasters happening more frequently?
  • What causes natural disasters?
    • Pollution and God
  • Why are natural disasters happening more frequently?
    • Pollution is on the increasing as population is increasing
  • Are natural disasters a sign of the end times?
    • Yes they are
    • But it’s not the last sign
    • Christian persecution is the final sign
  • Why does God allow natural disasters to happen?
    • There are only a few lessons that a war, or depression, or a storm can teach
    • Testing of faith is for you, God is not surprized
      • Job
      • Peter walks on water, in a storm
      • I wonder if I am a wise man or a foolish man that built his house or rock or sand?
        • How will I know without the storm?
        • I wonder which plant I am in the parable of the farmer and the seeds?
      • Storms remind us how big God is, who can control the storms but him?
      • Storms show us how fragile and short and unexpected life is
      • Storms remind us that nature wants sin to leave this world, and wants Jesus to come back and make everything new again
      • Storms show how non important and temporary the stuff in our live is
      • Storms shows us how dependant we are on God? Or do I just depend on me?
      • How important tests are… how important you becoming like Jesus is…
      • Shows us how connected we are, and responsible for each other we are… if you pollute, then it affects me, and our future
      • Create in me a clean heart oh God, and renew a right spirit within me
        • How does he do that?

 

THE SOURCE OF LIFE’S STORMS:

Sometimes it’s because of evil.

Sometimes it’s because of our sin.

Sometimes it’s because we’re out of the will of God.

Sometimes it’s because we’re in the will of God.

 

WHAT THE STORMS OF LIFE REVEAL:

The nature of my faith

The strength of my commitment

The level of my maturity

The health of my attitude

The measure of my teach ability

Questions & Scripture References  ~ Hurricane Sandy & Natural Disasters

1. What are natural disasters?
2. Are they happening more frequently? If so, why?
3. What causes natural disasters?
4. Are they a “sign of the end times”?
5. Why does God allow them to happen?

Matthew 5:45 ~ “He (God) makes the sun to rise on both good and bad people. And He sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong.”

1 Samuel 12:18 ~ Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day, and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel. 

Psalm 57:1 ~ Be merciful to me, O God; be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, until the destroying storms pass by. 

Matthew 14:29-33 ~ Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” 

Isaiah 54:11 ~ “O afflicted one, storm-tossed and not comforted, behold, I will set your stones in antimony, and lay your foundations with sapphires.” 

Matthew 24:3-8 ~ “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.” 

Romans 8:19-21 ~ For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.

 

 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

IMG_7788

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING 

(this is NOT FULLY DAIRY FREE because some butters contain casein/lactose …which can also give those with dairy intolerance issues. If you can have “GOAT’S MILK instead of “COWS MILK” you can use goat’s milk butter instead. I have not found a goat’s milk butter that is salted. So you will want to add salt to the recipe. Taste as you go! I have not attempted this with “GHEE but will do so soon!)

INGREDIENTS:

1 stick of “salted” butter” (250 g) – (room temperature..not liquid, 
but fairly soft)

2 ounces of unsweetened dark chocolate 

4 Tbsp of unsweetened chocolate almond milk (or milk of choice – if to thick add another tbsp or 2 of milk)

2 tbsps of powdered xylitol (Xylitol Canada)

4-5 tbsps of RAW organic honey (I use “Dutchman’s Gold RAW Honey” Dutchman’s Gold RAW Honey)

1-2 tbsps of unsweetened vanilla extract (Simply Organic Brand – 
Unsweetened Vanilla Extract)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter (make sure it is warm/room temp….you can use an electric mixer on medium speed for about 2-3 minutes then up it to a faster speed for a few mins or until creamy. ( I prefer to use my FOOD PROCESSOR)
  2. Then add in the unsweetened vanilla almond milk and beat until smooth.
  3. Melt your xyltiol and honey into the unsweetened dark chocolate over a double boiler.
  4. Then add the liquefied chocolate mixture with the vanilla into the remaining butter and mix until smooth.

If you have any issues with it not being smooth enough you can grab it and put it into a microwaveable safe dish (ie: glass dish) and heat for about 15-30 secs. Then put back into your large mixing bowl/food processor and blend until smooth.)

You’ll want to let this solidify slightly if adding it to muffins etc. (decorating different shapes (ie: roses/flowers etc.) with butter cream frosting.

IMG_7795


Everyone’s taste are different..so you may want to add more or less chocolate/sweetener to the frosting. 

(CLICK ON PICTURES FOR LARGER VIEW)

 

Almond Flour Chocolate Brownies

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_7796


ALMOND FLOUR CHOCOLATE BROWNIES

(Gluten, Grain, Milk Dairy (But does contain “Casein” “Lactose in the butter I use which is found in most butters. But you can use goats milk butter or GHEE)  & “Peanut” FREE)

(It does contain a nut though….almond.. because of the almond flour)


INGREDIENTS:

3/4 cup almond flour (NOT packed to tightly) –
(Almond Flour)

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (I powder mine down with a coffee
grinder) (Kosher Salt)

1 tablespoon unsweetened “Organic Criollo Arriba Cacao Powder”. ♥
Gluten-free, Vegan, Organic, Raw, Nut-Free, Soy-Free, Kosher, non-
GMO (Organic Criollo Arriba Cacao Powder) (if you are using lower quality cacao powder you can add in total 2 tbsps. But with this brand ONE is sufficient.)

1/2 teaspoon baking powder (aluminum free – just a touch over 1/2 tsp)

3/4 cup powdered xylitol (Xylitol Canada)

3 EXTRA large eggs (free range & hormone free)

1 tablespoon unsweetened vanilla (Simply Organic Brand –
Unsweetened Vanilla Extract)

1/2 cup “plus” 2 tbsps of salted butter (softened not liquefied when measuring)

7 oz unsweetened bakers chocolate (equals about 4 blocks of unsweetened chocolate before liquefied. When liquid it yields about 7-8 oz’s)

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the almond flour, salt, cocoa powder, and baking
powder and set aside. (I used a whisk to mixed everything together then I SIFTED the dry ingredients. (IMPORTANTSIFT your dry ingredients. I use: 3 Cup Flour Sifter).

IMG_8116Then stir in your cacao powder
2

This RAW Cacao Powder is AWESOME!  ♥ 

Gluten-free, Vegan, Organic, Raw, Nut-Free, Soy-Free, Kosher, non-GMO’d

MumsOriginalCacaoPowder200g-500x500

In a double boiler, melt together 7 ounces (4 blocks of chocolate) with the
1/2 cup – plus 2 tbsps of butter.

IMG_7743

7 oz of chocolate is about 4 bars of the pkg’d chocolate

IMG_7753

OR

5 or 6 of the smaller chunks of chocolate

IMG_7754

3While the chocolate is melting with the butter, mix together (with a whisk) the eggs, xylitol (sugar) & vanilla.

4

5

Add in your Xylitol. This is a low Glycemic sugar. Information about “Xylitol” here: Glycemic Index of Sweeteners & Ingredients & Resources

POWDERED

7

NOT POWDERED

8

I grind mine down with a coffee grinder. This one is from Walmart.

It cost about $15 bucks!

9

10

Egg & Sugar Mixture

6

Slowly pour the melted chocolate and butter into the egg/sugar
mixture while whisking until fully incorporated. Do not pour to much
of the chocolate at once…it will cook the eggs…pour a
little….whisk….pour some more..whisk….and so forth…until all the chocolate is added and whisked well.

12

Add the chocolate/egg mixture in with the dry ingredients and mix
completely. (I used a whisk ..I find it mixes better than a spatula in this recipe)

13

14

Pour the batter in an 8 x 8 pan. (a MUST)

15

16

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the “center” of  the dish comes out clean. Everyone’s heat in their oven is different. I found mine was cooked in about 27/28 mins. So keep an eye on it. The last 4 or 5 mins..do the toothpick test. Almond flour can burn/overcook easily…so it will not hurt if your toothpick has a slight bit of ingredients on it.

The tooth pick on the right shows it is not quite ready!

17Let the brownies cool “completely” before cutting into them…or adding your “Butter Cream Frosting”. The frosting will only melt and make a nasty mess! 

I lay it on a cooling tray so it’s not sitting right on the counter. It helps it cool more evenly.

The brownies will be raised when taken immediately from the oven. But they will settle. It is BEST to have these the next day. (Keep refrigerated). But if you want it more cakey..you can eat once cooled. The next day the brownies are more dense..it’s more like a cake/fudge brownie. 

The difference in the texture really is night and day from leaving it in the fridge over night! SO YUMMY!

Sorry these next 2 pics are blurry! 😦

 19

20

MMMMM….BROWNIES 🙂

18


For the “CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING” you can find it here: Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

(CLICK ON PICTURES FOR LARGER VIEW)

 

Plush Toy Owls ~ Emma’s Birthday

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Image

Plush Toy Owls ~ Emma’s Birthday

My Niece “Emma” will be turning “2” Feb. 7th. My younger sister “Joanne” and “I” decided to make toy owls for her.

Little girls tend to like many characters at this age…one minute they love “Toopy & Binoo” the next it’s “Bubble Guppies” …OH… and we can’t forget “Cinderella” & “Elmo“..well …you get what I am saying. Right now…Emma loves all of these (and many more)..but now she’s LOVING..Owls“. 🙂

Joe & I were looking online at “owl” party supplies and saw a pic of a homemade toy owl. Joanne said,Hey ..that can’t be that hard to make…let’s make some for Emma!“. Joanne had fabric left over from curtains and misc. things she’s making to add to Emma’s new room, so we went with that!

I’m not super skilled at sewing..but when I put my mind to it…I do pretty well..I guess…hahaha! Since I do not own a sewing machine..every piece was sewn by hand! 

Joanne cut out the main outer owl pattern and ironed on the EMMA letters. I cut out the eyes, nose, wings and stuffed the owls and sewed everything. 

I am very pleased with how they turned out! SUPER cute!!!! 🙂

Maybe once I’m more skilled at sewing…I can explain specifics of how to sew these adorable owls. For now…all I can do is show you the sections…hahah!

First you want to choose your FELT material

Image

Next, cut out your OWL SHAPEImage

Image

Next, cut out your WHITE OWL EYES

Image

Image

Then, cut out your black circles, diamond nose and

half moon wings…you get the idea 🙂

Image

Image

You want to sew the 2 pieces of the owl pattern inside out (after all the eyes, nose and wings are sewn on)..you turn it out…by doing this, you won’t see the stitches. Leave a few inches open at the bottom of the owls…that’s where you will stuff it..and do the final sewing of the last gap that is left opened. This site is very informative..it shows how to do the inside out sewing..and then turn it back to the proper side etc. How to make a plush toy

Here is an example of how to leave an opening and how to do the final HIDDEN stitch to close the gap.  This girl shows a final knot at the end. I did it where you did not see my knot and I hid it inside the toy. Hard to explain..will have to make my own video of it one day.  🙂

 

Here are the buttons that are only on the LARGER owl.

We used basic buttons for the other 3…but

the large button ones are SO perfect!

Image

Image

Here are the adorable owls! 🙂

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

This is EMMA 🙂

47603_10151341892220155_924132842_n

185059_10151225941170155_358156832_n

(click on all pictures for larger view)

Stir Fry ~ With Chicken

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_7455

STIR FRY ~ WITH CHICKEN

(click on pictures for larger view)

INGREDIENTS:

1) Asparagus

2) Onions

3) Mushrooms (have fun with different types of mushrooms)

4) Orange, Green,Yellow & Red PEPPERS 

5) 3 Chicken Breast (hormone & antibiotic free)

6) Fresh Garlic

7) BRAGGS Soya Sauce (Braggs Soya Sauce – NON-GMO’d)

8) Kosher Salt (coarse)

9) Coriander (fresh is always better)

10) Fresh Herbs & Parsley (dried if you want or fresh)

11) Fresh Black Pepper

12) Paprika

13) Grapeseed Oil

14) Garlic Powder (not salted and organic)

15) Onion Powder (not salted and organic)

16) Bean Sprouts

17) Baby Spinach

18) Water Chestnuts

19) Fresh Chives

20) Olive Oil

Really you can add anything to a stir fry. I added what was available in the house at the time. Normally I would add some Broccoli, Bok Choy & Carrots to this as well..really the possibilities are endless. You can make it vegetarian, vegan, add different meats, even fish. You can also add a dash or 2 of sesame seed oil (I am allergic ..so I kept it out).

Have fun with it! 🙂

FIRST: Add olive oil to your pan. Then cook up the mushrooms

and onions until browned.

Image

Then add your water chestnuts and brown a little.

Image

Image

Then add in your peppers, fresh garlic & asparagus…cook down a few mins until slightly browned. (I like my veggies with a SLIGHT crunch…not to raw, but up to you how well or little you want to cook them down).

Image

Image

There’s really no exact science to this recipe because some people like things over cooked or under cooked etc. But you don’t want it to be over cooked because it will turn to mush..and you won’t enjoy all the textures to the stir fry.

Then in a separate pan add some grapeseed oil. Then toss in your chicken breast that has been cfut up into bite size pieces. Cook FULLY. NO PINK. Until browned. You can add all of your spices now. 

Add in these herbs or your own herbs/spices of choice. I use a few dashes of soya sauce but you may want more or less. I usually throw a dash or 2 of soya sauce over the veg once cooked and a dash or 2 over the meat while it is cooking. Taste as you go ..that’s what I do!!!! ♥

  1. BRAGGS Soya Sauce (Braggs Soya Sauce)
  2. Kosher Salt (coarse)
  3. Coriander
  4. Fresh Herbs & Parsley (dried if you want or fresh)
  5. Fresh Black Pepper
  6. Paprika
  7. Garlic Powder (not salted and organic)
  8. Onion Powder (not salted and organic)
  9. Fresh Chives

(the chicken is not quite browned/cooked yet in this pic)

Image

Then once the chicken is just about ready..throw in your BEAN SPROUTS & SPINACH. Let sit on top of the chicken for a min or so to steam cook.

Image

Then stir around the CHICKENBEAN SPROUTS & SPINACH for another few mins on medium to low heat.

(sorry pic is blurry)

Image

Then grab your veggies and toss them into the pan with the chicken, spinach and bean sprouts. You’ll want that pan to be larger since you’ll have a ton more food to add to the final pan. 

Garnish with some fresh herbs and you can toss over rice. We only eat long grain brown rice. NO white rice for us! And VOILA! 

As you can see… many of the veggies have caramelized..that is what really helps add a wonderful flavour to the stir fry! 🙂

Image

(click on all pictures for larger view)

Retro Jello ~ With Carrot & Fruit

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Image

Retro Jello ~ With Carrot & Fruit

I am a HUGE fan of jello! I don’t know why. But it’s
fun for me….I just love it!

Store bought versions/pkgs of jello are full of BAD sugars and fructose, unhealthy ingredients and full of food colouring. What better way to make jello then right at home….you can control what goes into your jello!!! Much healthier and safer for your kids! 🙂


INGREDIENTS:


Mango Tea Jello

2 cups mango decaf tea (hot)

1 cup filtered water (cold)

3 envelopes of gelatin (unflavored – sugar free)

2/3 cup (plus 1 tbsp) of xylitol (powdered ~ Xylitol Canada ~ I use a coffee grinder to powder my xylitol)

Organic raspberries & blueberries


Carrot & Apple Juice Jello

2 cups carrot & apple juice (cold) (done with “Jack LaLanne’s” Power Juicer: Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer)

1 cup water (hot)

3 envelopes of gelatin (unflavored – sugar free)

2/3 cup (plus 1 tbsp) of xylitol (powdered ~ Xylitol Canada ~ I use a coffee grinder to powder my xylitol)

(I used 3 carrots including the peel/skin and 4 green apples including the
peel/skin – the juicer removes all the pulp so don’t worry no bits and pieces end
up into the jello..just beautiful juice)


Orange & Lemon Juice Jello

2 cups orange & lemon juice (cold) (done with “Jack LaLanne’s” Power Juicer: Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer)

1 cup water (hot)

2 envelopes of gelatin (unflavored – sugar free)

1/2 cup of xylitol (powdered ~ Xylitol Canada)

(I used 1 lemon including the peel/skin and 2 very large oranges including the peel/skin – use 4-5 smaller ones if you do not have the larger oranges. You can also do a lemon lime. If you want a less bitter citrus, just remove the peel/white part of the peel and only use the MEAT of the lemon & orange to juice and add a bit more xylitol to have it sweeter. I love lemon so I don’t mind it. If using it withe the skin add only 2 pkgs of gelatin. If using only lemon/orange juice add 3 pkgs)


Very Berry Tea Jello

2 cups very berry decaf tea (hot)

1 cup filtered water (cold)

3 envelopes of gelatin (unflavored – sugar free)

2/3 cup (plus 1 tbsp) of xylitol (powdered ~ Xylitol Canada)

Organic small red grapes

(I more or less just went with what ingredients I had in the house)

DIRECTIONS

With each layer you want to let the jello cool for about 1-2 hours before
adding the next layer of jello. If you use less gelatin you will need a longer time
for it to set.

First take your 3 pkgs of gelatin and let it bloom/set in 1 cup of COLD water or
2 cups of your COLD fruit/veg juice. Depending what favours you are making
you will use either just 1 cup of water for your gelatin to bloom..or use your 2
cups of COLD fruit juice to bloom the gelatin and then use 1 cup of HOT
liquid/water to add into it after.

You’ll want to let your gelatin bloom for 2-5 mins. Doesn’t take long. Just be
sure to stir it around so it is mixed well enough so it can bloom well.

I normally use about 3 cups of liquid and 3 pkgs of gelatin. If you want your
jello less stiff, you can use about 2 pkgs of gelatin.

Add your xylitol/sugar to the HOT liquid so it can dissolve then pour into the
cold mix.

The possibilities are endless with flavours. Test some flavours out on your kids to see what ones they love the best and stick with them. You can have all sorts of FUN with it. You can make it as sweet as you want. I also have tried an all VEG one (did not save or take pics will have to re-do for another time)…..no sugar added at all. Just wonderful vegetable flavours. You can add ginger and other spices as well. Just another SPIN on JELLO! 🙂

Image

IMG_7435

GETTING THE JELLO OUT OF THE MOLD

To unmold, moisten fingertips (or use a knife) and gently pull the top edges (or score it) away from the mold. Fill a bowl with warm (but not hot) water, or you can fill up your sink with water if using a larger dish and let it sit in the water; dip the mold just until the water nears the top. Hold it under for 20 seconds. Take it out of the water. Place a large plate over the mold. Holding the mold and plate together, invert and gently shake to loosen. Then slowly and gently pull the mold off. If the jello does not come out, dip the mold back into the water for another 15 to 20 seconds to help loosen it from the sides.

There are tons of vitamins in this jello. Especially since I used the skin/peel on many of the veg/fruits. You can also just make ONE flavour and let it set. It’s SUPER easy…and you can have jello within 3-4 hours for your kids. If making a fancier jello with different layers it can take 6-8 hours, because you have to wait for it to set 2 hours per layer. But making the juice and blooming the gelatin takes no time at all. 

While your jello is setting for the next layer, fold some laundry, catch up on some things. Relax in between – watch a movie, call a friend, read your bible. 🙂

IMPORTANT: If you are using your “Jack LaLanne’s” power juicer do not get rid of the pulp. I put a bag into the part that catches the pulp (easier for clean up as well) and I add that pulp into MUFFINS. In this case I have ORANGE, LEMON, GREEN APPLE & CARROT. That would be wonderful to add to muffins and a bunch of chocolate chunk chips! I will be adding a recipe for this muffin soon! 🙂

These were done with the same jello flavours that were layered above. I just didn’t add any berries/grapes! Just take the liquid jello and pour into a measuring cup to help you get it into the glasses.

Image

 

You’ll want to use a long skinny spoon or a little wee spoon if using shooter glasses.

Image

Image


So many ways to fancy it up!

You can also use milk products/whipped toppings to add a different contrast and creamy-ness & flavour. (but that is not as healthy because it will contain other bad/unhealthy ingredients). An alternative for dairy or a creamier texture you can use unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk. I’ll try this recipe for you soon!

I wanted to make a dessert that was ~ EGG, GLUTEN, DAIRY & NUT FREE and
with a LOW GLYCEMIC sugar! Kids have SO many allergies these days! 😦

Glycemic Index of Sweeteners

Glycemic Index of Sweeteners

(click on pictures for larger view)

Ps. So far out of these 4 flavours…the  “Very Berry Tea Jello with Red Grapes” was the FAV. Hubby LOVES this one! 

What “Les Misérables” Means To Me

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Image


What “Les Misérables” Means To Me

I finally saw (The Movie) “Les Misérables” 2012.

Though I am more of a fan of the Broadway productions, I still, very much,
enjoyed the movie.

Floods of emotion …I could not contain…I will watch this movie…over and over
again! 🙂 

I auditioned for “Les Misérables” in Toronto, Ontario years and years ago in my early 20″s with an independent Broadway company (I can’t remember the companies name now..it’s been, so long ago).

I auditioned for the part of both “Fantine” and Eponine“. I got the part of “Fantine“.

Several weeks passed, and I was hard at work studying my lines, going to
rehearsal after rehearsal. But then suddenly, out of the blue, I was notified that
the company cancelled the show because of budget cuts/issues. I was
devastated. 😦

When I saw that a “movie” was coming out about “Les Misérables” my heart
skipped a beat (because it truly is one of my favs)..but at the same time, a wave
of sorrow came over me.

See, when I first left Newfoundland (when I was 19)…I was pretty much on my
own. It was exciting, but also, very frightening. Though, I knew at any time I
could call home to my parents to find comfort and I had friends who surrounded
me…..it was quite daunting. I was hiding a lot of burdens and sorrows from
everyone.

I have not made some of my past hurts/abuse known to the public. I have
opened up and shared with a few select friends and family. But, I will share a bit
with you today.

From age 7-9 I was abused by a female babysitter. A lot of things went downhill
for me at a very young age, emotionally and physically. When I was 17, I was
date raped. Apart from the abuse/rape, other confusing things were swirling
around in my life. I attempted suicide. My world was full of chaos.

I had heard about and watched “Les Misérables” before I auditioned for this particular production. I was a bit consumed by it all. It broke me…and made me feel even more sad (then what I was already feeling), but at the same time..I felt comfort, inspiration and love from it.

I always loved God, spoke to Him and prayed often…that was my only sanity
often times. But “Les Misérables” got a hold of me this one year and when I saw
that a production was coming to the city…I was right there ready to audition for
it. I guess I was seeking some sort of outlet to release my pain.

Back then the song “I Dreamed A Dream” really impacted me…though a very
sad song…I could relate to it on many levels.

“I Dreamed A Dream”

There was a time when men were kind
When their voices were soft
And their words inviting
There was a time when love was blind
And the world was a song
And the song was exciting
There was a time
Then it all went wrong

I dreamed a dream in times gone by
When hope was high
And life worth living
I dreamed that love would never die
I dreamed that God would be forgiving
Then I was young and unafraid
And dreams were made and used and wasted
There was no ransom to be paid
No song unsung

No wine untasted

But the tigers come at night
With their voices soft as thunder
As they tear your hope apart
As they turn your dream to shame

He slept a summer by my side
He filled my days with endless wonder
He took my childhood in his stride
But he was gone when autumn came

And still I dream he’ll come to me
That we will live the years together
But there are dreams that cannot be
And there are storms we cannot weather
I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I’m living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed

To this day..I cherish this song.. even though a lot of the memories and
emotions that surround it, are of sadder times.

BUT, I am happier now. 🙂

I have been healed, on so many levels, from the abuse and the chaos that
surrounded my life back then. Through an awesome loving family, amazing
friends and a God who has never left me and will NEVER leave me…I am where I
need to be…and on a mission to do the will of God in my life. 🙂

So,…. back to …”What “Les Misérables” Means To Me?

1) Les Mis is a reminder of how I have overcome my past.
2) It’s not just about our own life struggles, but being there for other people.
3) Love is higher and more powerful than any law.

Now…on to lighter things…..I thought “Anne Hathaway” did a great job..not so much how well she sang the song..I think there are others in my opinion, who sang it better..but her EMOTION during the performance is what really gets you! I have never heard/seen anyone in all the years it has been performed on Broadway.. sing it with such emotion and conviction….the tears really getcha! Anne did an amazing job!

I have not found a FULL “live” version of her performance on youtube yet… only this one.


Here is one of the trailers to “I Dreamed A Dream”


But my fav performances are by “Lea Salonga & Ruthie Henshall”

“Lea Salonga”


“Ruthie Henshall”


My other FAV song from “Les Misérables” is “On My Own”. And favourite

version sung is by “Lea Salonga”.


Maybe one day..if I hear of an audition for “Fantine”..maybe I’ll go!
🙂

 

STORY OF “Les Misérables”

“Les Misérables” ~ 2012

Prisoner 24601, known as Jean Valjean, is released from prison and breaks
parole to create a new life for himself while evading the grip of the persistent
Inspector Javert. Set post-revolutionary France, the story reaches resolution
against the background of the June Rebellion.

Based on the novel by Victor Hugo, ‘Les Miserables’ travels with prisoner-on-
parole, 24601, Jean Valjean, as he runs from the ruthless Inspector Javert on a
journey beyond the barricades, at the center of the June Rebellion. Meanwhile,
the life of a working class girl with a child is at turning point as she turns to
prostitution to pay money to the evil innkeeper and his wife who look after her
child, Cosette. Valjean promises to take care of the child, eventually leads to a
love triangle between Cosette, Marius who is a student of the rebellion, and
Eponine, a girl of the streets. The people sing of their anger and Enjolras leads
the students to fight upon the barricades.

 

“Les Misérables” 2012 ~ Synopsis (SPOILER ALERT)

In 1815, convict Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) is released on parole by prison
guard Javert (Russell Crowe) after serving a nineteen-year sentence. He is
offered food and shelter by the Bishop of Digne (Colm Wilkinson), but steals his
silver during the night. He is caught by the authorities, but the Bishop lies that
the silver was given as a gift, and secures Valjean’s release. Touched by the
Bishop’s love, grace and generosity, Valjean breaks his parole and vows to start
an honest life under a new identity. Javert swears he will bring the escaped
convict to justice.

Eight years later, Valjean has become a factory owner and mayor of Montreuil-
sur-Mer. Fantine (Anne Hathaway), one of his workers, is discovered to be
sending money to her illegitimate daughter, Cosette (Isabelle Allen), who lives
with the unscrupulous Thénardiers (Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham
Carter) and their daughter Éponine (Samantha Barks), and is dismissed by the
foreman (Michael Jibson). Left with no alternative, Fantine turns to prostitution.
During an argument with an abusive customer, Javert, now a police inspector,
arrests Fantine, but Valjean intercedes and takes her to a hospital.

Later, Valjean learns that a man believed to be him has been arrested. Unable
to condemn an innocent man, Valjean reveals his identity to the court before
departing for the hospital. There he promises a dying Fantine that he will look
after her daughter. After escaping from Javert, Valjean finds Cosette and pays
the Thénardiers to allow him to take her, and promises to be like a father to her.

Nine years later, Jean Maximilien Lamarque, the only government official
sympathetic toward the poor, is nearing death. Students Marius Pontmercy
(Eddie Redmayne) and Enjolras (Aaron Tveit), together with street urchin
Gavroche (Daniel Huttlestone), discuss fomenting revolution. Later Marius
catches a glimpse of Cosette (Amanda Seyfried), now a young woman, and
instantly falls in love with her. Meanwhile, despite Cosette’s questioning,
Valjean refuses to tell her about his past or Fantine.

At a café, Enjolras organises a group of idealistic students as Lamarque’s death
is announced. Meanwhile, Éponine, now Marius’s friend, leads him to Cosette,
where the two profess their love for one another. Lamenting that her secret love
for Marius will never be reciprocated, Éponine fatalistically decides to join the
revolution. Later, an attempted robbery of Valjean’s house makes him
mistakenly believe that Javert has discovered him, and he flees with Cosette. As
they leave, Enjolras rallies the Parisians to revolt, and Cosette sends a farewell
letter to Marius.

The next day, the students interrupt Lamarque’s funeral procession and begin
their assault. Javert poses as a rebel in order to spy on them, but is quickly
exposed by Gavroche and captured. During the ensuing gunfight, Éponine
saves Marius at the cost of her own life, professing her love to him before she
dies, which leaves Marius devastated at the loss of his best friend. Valjean,
intercepting a letter from Marius to Cosette, goes to the barricade to protect
Marius. After saving Enjolras from snipers, he is allowed to execute Javert.
However, when the two are alone, Valjean chooses to free Javert instead and
fires his gun to fake the execution. Initially disbelieving, Javert wonders at
Valjean’s generosity.

With the Parisians not joining the revolution as the students expected, they
resolve to fight to the death. Everyone is killed but Marius, who is saved when
Valjean drags his unconscious body into the sewers. Thénardier, scavenging
the dead bodies, steals Marius’s ring. Valjean recovers and escapes the sewers
carrying Marius, but is confronted at the exit by Javert. Javert threatens to
shoot Valjean if he refuses to surrender, but Valjean ignores him. Unable to
reconcile the conflict between his civil and moral duties, two things which he
always considered the same, Javert commits suicide.

Later, Marius mourns for his friends but Cosette comforts him. Revealing his
past to Marius, Valjean tells him he must leave because his presence endangers
Cosette, and makes Marius promise never to tell her. Marius and Cosette marry;
the Thénardiers crash the reception and testify that they saw Valjean carrying
a murdered corpse through the sewers. Thénardier unwittingly shows Marius
the ring that he stole from him as “proof.” Recognising the ring, Marius realises
that it was Valjean who saved his life. Marius and Cosette rush to Valjean after
being told his location by Thénardier.

As Valjean sits dying in a local convent, he perceives the spirit of Fantine
appearing to take him to Heaven. Cosette and Marius rush in to bid farewell.
Valjean hands Cosette his confession of his past life, and the spirits of Fantine
and the Bishop guide him to paradise, where he joins the spirits of Enjolras,
Éponine, Gavroche, and the other rebels at the Barricade on the rue Soufflot.