Faith

What’s Happening This Fall @ Cooking Up Faith

Fall is my favorite time of year. To me fall starts on September 1st, and that’s the day I start putting up my fall decorations. I enjoy everything about fall – the cooler weather, Halloween, Thanksgiving, pumpkins, and fall clothes.

With the changing season coming up, there is also some exciting changes I’ll be making to Cooking Up Faith. It feels like I have written about everything with this blog – when I first started I wrote a lot about being in the midst of toddlers and nap times. I moved on to devotionals and then tried Bible studies. I’ve always incorporated recipes too, as I love food. :)

I feel like I finally know what the purpose is for Cooking Up Faith – to encourage women to deepen their relationship with God through Scripture. Right now more than ever we need more truth and less opinions. We need to be at one with God and constantly on His side and by His side, instead of choosing worldly sides.

The closest way to be with God is through His Word and prayer. There is a new kind of peace and comfort that comes over you when you read scripture. You make better decisions, and think before you speak when scripture is swirling in your head. Your perception of everything changes when you walk in scripture.

I want this kind of faith. A faith rooted in truth, in scripture, in the grace of Jesus. I want to live my life based more on faith (truth)  and less on feelings (lies).

I want to deepen my relationship with God by walking in His Words, and I want the purpose of Cooking Up Faith to do the same.

So…

“Your Daily Bread” arno-smit-83025-1

Starting September 4th I will be posting “Your Daily Bread,” scriptures, which will be a scripture to reflect, pray, and walk in for that day. These scriptures will carry themes through the seasons, and since I love fall, you can anticipate lots of fall pictures to go with the scriptures of the day throughout the fall!

If you read our post, “The Meaning of Your Life,” you’ll remember that abiding in Christ through scripture and prayer is one of our purposes in life. These daily scriptures will help you abide in Christ as you reflect and meditate on specific scripture throughout each day.

If you have already subscribed by email you will receive these directly to your email inbox. “Your Daily Bread” scriptures will be shared throughout the week.

Devotionals toa-heftiba-128693

I will also continue with occasional devotionals – more in depth thoughts over scriptures, truths, and faces from the Bible.

Seasonal Recipes IMG_3212

New recipes will still be shared here at Cooking Up Faith. I look forward to sharing some new seasonal recipes with you!

I’m looking forward to September – not just for the fall clothes and pumpkins, but to share scripture with you, and walk in God’s Word!

We’ll start our collection of September Scriptures on September 4th!

 

Purpose

The Meaning of Your Life

There are 3 things that are the entire meaning of your life. You carry these 3 meanings with you at all times. These 3 meanings of your life can’t be taken away or lost. All 3 meanings are the same for every person. Here they are:

  1. Salvation – to receive the gift of Christ’s grace, and begin your walk with God for eternity.

When you go through life trying and trying to be good enough, feel good enough, achieve enough, but still fall short you realize you need more. You need more power and authority than you possess to help you achieve what you can’t on your own. You need a constant source of forgiveness and second chances. You need a Savior. And you accept Jesus as your Savior – the One who says you are forgiven, you are blameless, you are pure, you have love, guidance, and help through this life. Just because we receive salvation once doesn’t mean we will never sin again! We sin daily, and God reminds us that even though our salvation is sealed, we should still confess our sins to Him daily.

This is salvation – your soul surrendering to Jesus and allowing Him to cover your faults and mistakes in the eyes of God so you can have a relationship with God now, and for the rest of eternity.

2. Sanctification – to become Christ-like by abiding in Christ daily.

Now that you have salvation, you can begin your walk with Jesus, and allow Him to have a great influence over you. This is called sanctification – you start changing your perception and attitude, because Jesus now lives within your heart and soul and His influence within you is powerful enough to change the way you think. He is the Leader of the most inward parts of your heart, soul, and mind, and becomes the Leader of your life.

The way to achieve powerful sanctification is by abiding in Christ. You abide in Christ in two ways – by reading scripture and praying. The more you read scripture and pray, the more you are abiding in Christ. The more you abide in Christ the more influence He has over your heart, mind, and soul. The amount of influence you allow Christ to have within you results in the amount of Christ-likeness you become.

Notice that it is Christ’s influence within you that results in becoming Christ-like, not your own efforts to become like Christ. It is Him within you that changes who you are, not you trying to change simply by adjusting certain behaviors. And the only way Jesus can take a powerful influence over you is to abide in Him by reading scripture and praying. We have such short attention spans, it takes daily reading of scripture and praying to truly abide in Christ. John 1:1 says that The Word is Christ, therefore when you spend time reading the Bible, you are abiding in Christ.

3. Glorification – to pour out on others what God has poured into you.

Now you have salvation – you walk around blameless and pure, without any blemishes or faults in God’s eyes.

You have sanctification – you are abiding in Christ by reading scripture and praying daily, and as a result of Christ’s great influence within you, you are starting to think and act more like Christ and less like your impulsive self.

Now it’s time for glorification. This is where you pour out to others what Christ is pouring into you. Love, forgiveness, gentleness, patience. As you give these gifts to others you are glorifying Christ – because it is only Him within you that allows you to be so loving, forgiving, and patient with others. To glorify Christ means you bring to light His character upon others, which is love, joy, patience, self-control, and gentleness. The only way to do this is through meaning #2 – by abiding in Christ daily. If you try to do this on your own without reading scripture or praying, your efforts will seem like work and a chore, rather than a sincere pouring out of Christ within you.

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Your marriage, your children, the people you work with – these are all the people God has placed in your life so you can glorify Him to them. These are the people God wants to share His love, patience, and gentleness with through you. They are not the meaning of your life or your purpose. Remember the meaning of your life is to receive salvation, abide in Christ, and then share the love, patience, joy, and gentleness Christ has shared within you to others.

This was a message I heard over the weekend at church. This is the meaning of your life and everyone around you – to receive Christ’s forgiveness, to abide in Christ daily, and to share the love Christ pours into you while you’ve been abiding in Him with others.

He must increase, but I must decrease. ~ John 3:30

*joining Holley Gerth today

 

 

 

 

 

Faces of the Bible, Stronger Faith

When Things Get Worse When You Trust, Pray and Obey

Moses was given an assignment from God – send a message to Pharaoh to let the Israelites go, and lead the people to a land of freedom. Although Moses had his share of doubts, he obeyed God and did as was instructed.

However, when Moses obeyed God, did something good happen right away? (No, things actually got worse.)

How do you think Moses felt when he obeyed God and the troubles of the Israelite slaves were made worse?

Sometimes things get worse before they get better. In the end Moses did in fact lead the Israelites to freedom, but their circumstances definitely got worse before they tasted any sort of freedom from their problems.

When Moses was in a state of confusion because his circumstances didn’t match his obedience, he cried out to God, “Why, Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Is this why you sent me? Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble on this people, and you have not rescued your people at all.”

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh: Because of my mighty hand he will let them go; because of my mighty hand he will drive them out of his country.”

“I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.” (Ex. 5:22-6:8)

jessica-ruscello-99577When things seem to get worse when you pray and trust, remember, Moses too went through this sort of trial. God wasn’t ignoring Moses or making things difficult without purpose. Sometimes the valleys we walk through must become very low before we recognize the height of God’s power and love.

Recipes

Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup

New recipe from Heritage Schoolhouse: Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup

soup.jpg
You will need –
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks of celery, diced
1/4 cup flour
2 cups half and half
2 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon thyme
salt and pepper to taste
1 pound cooked chicken, chopped into bite sized pieces
handful of fresh spinach, chopped
1 package of gnocchi (potato pasta)
 Directions:
Heat butter and oil in a saucepan.
Saute onion, garlic and celery for several minutes.
Add flour and stir.
Add half and half and broth and bring to a boil.
Stir until mixture begins to thicken.
Add seasonings, chicken, spinach and gnocchi.
Lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
Serve with crusty bread and enjoy!
Hope for Today

A Night time Prayer (with music)

My faithful God, answer me when I call out to you. Give me rest from my trouble. Have mercy on me. Hear my prayer.

How long will you people turn my glory into shame? How long will you love what will certainly fail you? How long will you pray to statues of gods?

Remember that the Lord has set apart his faithful servant for himself. The Lord hears me when I call out to Him.

Tremble and do not sin. When you are in bed, look down deep inside yourself and be silent. Offer to the Lord the sacrifices that godly people offer. Trust in Him.

Lord, many are asking, “Who will make us successful?”

Lord, may you do good things for us. Fill my heart with joy when the people have lots of grain and fresh wine.

In peace I will lie down and sleep. Lord, you alone keep me safe.

~ Psalm 4

*A little night time music while you lay silent, in peace, lifting your thoughts to the Lord…

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