I Burnt The Resurrection Rolls

Seriously.  I burnt them.  See …

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The tops don’t look so bad.  But you’ve used those prepackaged crescent rolls before, right? You know how GREAT they are when they are lightly browned? Where they are fluffy and just cooked all the way through? These were hard and flaky.  Check out the bottoms …

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YUCK! I bit into one and threw it away.  My sweet kids?  These guys?

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They ate them right up!!! They didn’t even care.  Isn’t that sweet 🙂

My hope in Jesus dying on the cross to make a way for me to have a relationship with God the Father is so deep and hits on so many levels, but it also hits on the basic level of this:

I can’t even make resurrection rolls correctly and I need His help to just make breakfast every day!!! Praise Jesus for the hope He gives us!!!

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.”

Proverbs 3:5-6

You can find the recipe for ‘Resurrection Rolls’  like I did, by googling it.  🙂 

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Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday.  That’s what today is.  In one week from today we celebrate Easter and the resurrected Christ.  Today, however, we hone in on a journey Christ took that has a bit of a heavy tone to it.  He knew what this next week of His life had in store.  We know what this next week of His life had in store.  Not many other humans on earth did at the time.  Maybe no one else.  Here is where it is found in scripture:

Matthew 21:1-11

21 When they had approached Jerusalem and had come to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied there and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to Me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.” This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

Say to the daughter of Zion,
Behold your King is coming to you,
Gentle, and mounted on a donkey,
Even on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’”

The disciples went and did just as Jesus had instructed them, and brought the donkey and the colt, and laid their coats on them; and He sat on the coats. Most of the crowd spread their coats in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading them in the road. The crowds going ahead of Him, and those who followed, were shouting,

“Hosanna to the Son of David;
Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord;
Hosanna in the highest!”

10 When He had entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred, saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

‘Hosanna’ is a term used to express adoration, praise or joy.

‘Son of David’ – There is a prophecy in 2 Samuel 7 that tells of a Messiah coming.  Christ is the fulfillment of that prophecy and is our Messiah. You can see geological proof of that in Matthew 1.

‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord’ is a direct quote from Psalm 118:26.  He is worthy to be blessed and praised because He came to take away the sins of the world. And in scripture, where we meditate today, He was on His journey to do just that.  His journey to the Cross was less than a week away.  This triumphant entry was the beginning of that journey.  He was headed into Jerusalem, where He knew He would eventually be captured, scourged and put to death on a cross for us.

Why? Just so we can know Him and be in relationship with Him.  Jesus had to take our sin away so we could be put back into a right relationship with God.  Jesus did that for us.

Today, and all this week, let’s remember that.  Let’s think on that and rest in that.  What does it mean to you that Jesus endured all that He did for you? You are that important to Him.

So What About All The Bunnies, Chicks, Eggs and Peeps?

Well, honestly, I don’t know. I grew up with bunnies, chicks and eggs at Easter. They bring back good memories. I had a really easy time believing in Santa Claus as a child. That was totally believable to me. But the Easter Bunny … now we’re stretching it a bit! Isn’t that funny?! I totally believed in a jolly fat guy who delivered gifts, via flying reindeer, to all children in one night, but a magical life-sized bunny painting eggs for children … no way.

My mom always did a GREAT job of making every season and holiday something special. We celebrated it and decorated the house for it. I tend to do the same thing. I like wreaths and outside décor for seasons and holidays. I have cute spring and Easter decorations that I enjoy. I have dishtowels with eggs and chicks on them. We dye eggs every Easter with the kids and have an egg hunt. That’s always fun … a tradition we all enjoy.

But this year I’m rethinking it all a bit …

Not because it’s bad or evil. Not because I want to be different than everyone else. I’m rethinking it all because God has caused my heart to pause. As Valentine’s Day came to a close and I took down my heart-shaped red décor, I started thinking about my Easter décor and when I was going to decorate. It was then that I felt the Holy Spirit create a small tension inside of me about it all. Did you know that’s how God speaks to us? There’s a beautiful story about it in 1 Kings 19. Elijah was instructed to go and stand on a mountain before the Lord. He was trying to hear from God. There were all these things that happened that made loud noises – a strong wind, an earthquake, a fire – but scripture says “and after the fire a sound of a gentle blowing” 1 Kings 19:12.

Y’all — that was the Lord. That was Him speaking to Elijah. You see, I try to spend time in scripture, prayer, confession and surrender daily JUST FOR MOMENTS LIKE THESE!!!! How exciting it is to have moments of quietness where you are discerning that the Lord is asking you to take pause and think about something.

So that’s what I’m doing. I’m reading about it. I’m praying about it. I’m talking to my husband about it. I’m processing with my children about it. I’m NOT throwing the baby out with the bath water and throwing all my Easter decorations away. I have them around my house now. Cute little Eggs on my mantel and chick towels in my bathroom. I’m holding it all with an open hand and asking Jesus to guide Michael, me and our family through it. What is He calling us to do? Why are we doing what we’re currently doing?

This Lenten season, I ask you just to pause and think about why you are doing what your doing. When you do that … ask God to show you what HE wants you to do. Ask Him to speak to you, just as He did to Elijah, and give you a heart that discerns His voice. Pray with faith … expecting Him to speak to you. And then let me know about it…I’d love to hear how God is speaking to you!

A Prayer for You for Today

Prayer from Dietrich Bonhoeffer (Germany, 1906-1945)

O God, early in the morning I cry to you. Help me to pray; and to concentrate my thoughts on you; I cannot do this alone.

In me there is darkness, but with you there is light; I am lonely, but you do not leave me; I am feeble in heart, but with you there is help; I am restless, but with you there is peace. In me there is bitterness, but with you there is patience; I do not understand your ways, but you know the way for me. . . .

Restore me to liberty, and enable me to live now that I may answer before you and before men. Lord, whatever this day may bring, your name be praised.

Amen.

Fish Fridays During Lent

I learned something new at work last week.  Catholics do not eat meat on Fridays during Lent.  When I inquired about it, no one really knew why, but that’s just what they did (or didn’t do) on Friday’s during Lent.  So that left me wondering and doing a little internet research.  If you know more about this … please leave comments below.  I’d love to learn.

Let’s start from a Theological perspective:  in the church, we commemorate Jesus’ death as being on a Friday.  Because of that, people have written of fasting on Friday to remember His sacrifice for us from very early on.  That’s it.  It’s just that simple.  So in an effort to not forget Jesus’ sacrifice, many cut out meat on Fridays.  Eating fish is fair game for Fridays because they are cold-blooded animals.  Apparently it’s only warm-blooded — live off the land sort of animals — that are off-limits.

As the church and Catholicism grew, fasting from meat was not just a Friday during lent sort of thing. Most catholics were supposed to fast from meat every Friday to continually remind themselves of Jesus’ death on the cross. When adding in advent and other Holy Days in the christian calendar, Fish Friday’s grew in popularity.

I read an interesting USA today article concerning Fish Friday’s and a McDonald’s in a largely catholic part of Cincinnati. Apparently, the franchise was doing very poorly on Fridays and was going under. The Owner/General Manager knew he needed a non-meat alternative for Friday if his business was going to survive. So he developed the Filet-o-Fish sandwich. The the full article here.

I personally did not adopt the ‘no meat Friday’ as a part of my fasting this year. I’m going to keep it in my thoughts and see if that is something I think I need to pull in at another time. I will tell you, this would be a hard one for me. I don’t really care for fish, so it would definitely be a sacrifice for me. Maybe that is reason enough to pull it in and take part?

Do you eat meat on Fridays during Lent? Was it something you grew up doing or are you doing it just recently as an addition to your Lenten fasting routine? I’m super interested to know!

No Fasting on Sundays

photo-2Did you know it is a part of the Lenten tradition to NOT fast on Sundays?  I had no idea!  The reason?  We treat every Sunday like a Mini-Easter.  We celebrate His resurrection.  So how do we have a Mini-Easter celebration every Sunday?  I have a few suggestions …  More

Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday.  What exactly is Ash Wednesday?  Well, this might be a simple question for you.  Maybe you know the answer to that question right away.  Unfortunately, I didn’t.  I never grew up giving much thought to Ash Wednesday. I didn’t even know it existed until I was in my twenties.  The short answer: Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent.  That’s swell and all, but what is it really for and why do so many make a special trip to their church to get ashes on their forehead? More

Lent, Ash Wednesday & Easter

Did you grow up celebrating Lent?  I never did.  I’m guessing it was only because I was not in a church that did.  I did grow up going to church though, and still do.  My faith is very important to me.  I’m a 100% believer in Jeremiah 17:9:

“The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9 NAS

My heart is sick.  It’s in a dead-end situation and in need of a Savior.  I also believe 100% in Romans 6:23 and Romans 10:9:

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 6:23 NAS

“That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.” Romans 10:9

All that being said … I need Jesus.  Scripture says I do and I know it.  I need Him to do a good work in and through me on a minute-by-minute basis, every day of my life.  Christmas and Easter are two Christian holidays I don’t take lightly.   More

“Live, And Live Well”

As I finish up this “month of love” blogging, I want you to read  part of a sermon that was never given.  This is taken from a sermon that Kyle Lake, a young preacher in Waco had prepared to give shortly after the baptismal service that day.  The only problem is that Kyle was electrocuted during the baptism service and he died, never having been able to give this message to his congregation, this passage was read aloud at his funeral.  Kyle never got to live out these words, but you and I certainly can read them and implement them beginning this day:

Live. And Live Well” More

B-E-S-T

Dr. Ed Wheat in Intended For Pleasure says to have the BEST marriage (B-E-S-T); you need to do these four things daily:

      • B-Bless– speak a verbal blessing, or say a prayed blessing for your husband (side note- this used to confuse me as a younger believer, but all you do in a blessing is simply call on God on behalf of others and ask Him to bring them what they need. One of the most famous blessings in the Bible is found in Numbers 6:24-26…   “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; The Lord lift His countenance on you, and give you peace.”
      • E-Edify– build him up in some way- encourage him daily
      • S-Share– what has happened in each others day- find a time to visit about what went on today
      • T-Touch– each other gently-a hug, kiss, back rub, hand holding, etc.

Remember the now famous saying:

Please try to notice and enjoy the little things today, for one day you look back and realize that the little things were actually the big things in life!

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