My Story…

A question was posed at church yesterday: Where and when have you experienced the movement of the Spirit?

My Story…

It was Christmas morning and I was sad.

I was sad because I felt alone.

Yes, I was the only one up…Corinne, the puppies, and the kitties were snuggled in their beds with visions of sugar plums still in their heads. But this is not the kind of “alone” I mean. This “alone” is good. I love this “alone.” I drink coffee, read, and pray to this kind of “alone.” This alone makes me happy. My introverted self has fallen in love with this “alone.”

The aloneness I’m talking about hurts deep in your spirit, and its name is rejection.

Rejected?

I was sad because I felt rejected by those who were supposed to love me.

They use to love me and welcome me into their life. We shared tears and laughter, and get-togethers…dinners and movies… We were partakers of time together. My time was their time and their time was my time.

But on this particular Christmas morning I was alone and the chasm was deep.

Seated on my sofa I began to cry.

I noticed the Bible on the table beside me. I reached for it with the intent of reading the Christmas story…after-all it was Christmas morning.

Matthew? Mark? Luke? John? What version should I read? I chose John.

John’s version of Christmas opens at the time of creation, and I envisioned Jesus’ Spirit moving within the mist among His heavens.

John speaks of Christ and how the words of His mouth created all we see. He paints Jesus as light and life, and how his light shown in the darkness and how the darkness comprehended it not…and how this light physically came into the world as a babe lying in a manger.

As I read I began to feel his presence.

I felt his Spirit urging me to read on. As if He whispered “Read on my child…I have something else to tell you…” And so I did, and as I did I saw the words…”He came unto his own and his own received him not.”

In that moment his gentle voice spoke to my heart…”I know how you feel…”

Again I cried, but I was not alone.

***

Word for the day: Mist

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Beer-Battered Baby Squash & Blooms

I could wait no longer!

I had to have them and nothing would deter me.

Standing by my little garden I salivated as I gazed down upon the treasure; and so putting an end to my hesitation, I bent down and picked six baby squash, one with a lovely bloom intact.

That was the beginning of a delicious ending I’ve chosen to call, “Beer-Battered Baby Squash & Blooms.”

And so, to quote Paul Harvey… “Here’s the rest of the story…”

Ingredients

Baby Squash with blooms if possible

1 Bottle/Can Lite Beer

1 cup Self-Rising Flour

1 tsp Garlic Powder or Onion Powder (or both)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Fresh Mozzarella (or your favorite cheese)

Fresh Green Onions finely chopped

Vegetable Oil for frying

Mix flour, garlic/onion power, salt & pepper, and beer until it resembles thick pancake batter.

Remove the pistols from flowers. Blanch for 30 seconds and then put blossoms in a cold water bath for 5-10 seconds. Lay on paper towels to absorb water. Mix cheese and green onions. Carefully stuff squash blossoms with cheese, drape petals over cheese and twist the ends to seal. If the blossoms are frail and difficult to handle put them in the fridge to sit about 15-20 minutes. I totally skipped this step.

Dip stuffed squash blooms and baby squash into the batter to completely coat. Drop into hot oil (375 degrees) and fry for 1-2 minutes.

When they are golden brown, remove from oil and lay on paper towels.

Take a bite and enjoy the scrumptious soft middle surrounded by a light and airy crust (thanks to the beer). It’s truly the best “homemade homework” I produced in quite a while.

Friends, these are simply delicious!

I hope you get the chance to indulge this summer!

***

Today’s Word: Homework

A Cup of Water

Reaching out across the ocean to help the helpless is honorable and necessary, but we don’t have to go to war-torn countries to be of service to those in need. Open your eyes for there are battle worn souls in the midst.

“You don’t have to travel the world to serve; you can find opportunities right in your own community…Whether loving your neighbor is as big as crossing the ocean or as small as offering someone a cup of water on a hot day, God is pleased by it all.” Erica Cosgrove

And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.” Matthew 10:42

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Word of the day: War

What If You Could Pick?

In this life change is inevitable. From the moment we wake to the setting of the sun, our bodies and emotions continue to evolve. One could argue that we possess the power to alter the severity of these changes through prayer, meditation, exercise, and diet; however, this one thing is certain: we cannot stop change. If you’re reading this and breathing you’re on your way to the end. Hopefully that doorway is far into the future.

Ben Franklin once said, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”

Well, Mr Franklin, you’re right about the dying part but not so right about paying taxes. Obviously, your crystal ball failed to reveal the Donald Trumps of this present world, and large corporations like Amazon and Netflix. But I refuse to talk politics. It’s a subject that has cost me family and friends.

BUT…

What if…what if we were allowed pick some of those changes?

I’ve borrowed the following scenarios from one of my favorite blogs, This, That, and The Other. ( https://fivedotoh.com ). It is a set of “What if we could change” questions. I thought it would be fun to venture into Neverland, and post my answers here on Redhead Reflections. If you would like to share your answers to these questions please leave them in the comments section. I always seek to better know my readers.

So, here we go…

Rory Asks About Loose Change

Right now, right this minute, what could happen that would change your life totally for the better?

Healing for someone I hold dear to my heart.

How well do you handle changes in your life, to your life, or to your regular routines?

Well, it depends on the type of changes, of course. Obviously, if I won the lottery I’d be doing cartwheels, but in general, I’m not very good with change.

If you could jump into a pool of something odd [not water] what would it be?

Rice pudding, but only if I could carry a spoon.

What would be so much better if you could simply change the color of it?

My lily-white skin. (heeeheeeeheeee)

If you had a time machine, would you go back in time or visit the future and would you change anything?

I would go back to creation and chop down all the apple trees.

Do you prefer dogs over cats or cats over dogs?

I consider cats my spiritual avatar, but, that being said, I have 3 dogs and I love them with all my heart. (Is that dodging the question?)

How would you react if you were unexpectantly changed into a frog?

Well, I sure wouldn’t eat a fly! I’d probably take advantage of my jumping ability and do somersaults in the wind.

Write a random sentence about blogging without using the letter G.

My site, Redhead Reflections, is almost 6 years old!

If you could change the world over, what would you change?

Kindness would be innate.

Why did you do that?

So mankind could truly live out the golden rule.

If you could disinvent something, what would it be and why?

War. War would never be an option. Without war, perhaps we could live in peace, where no one is taken advantage of regardless of gender, race, religion, wealth, or sexual orientation.

You have been gifted an elephant – you cannot give it away, donate it, or sell it – what are you going to do with your elephant?

I’m going to hug him, kiss him, pat him, and name him George.

What are your values with regards your life?

To be kind and help others. (sounds “cheesy” but it’s genuine)

Who do you prefer to spend the most time with?

As an introvert, I love my alone time. I find I’m a better person to all those around me when I’ve had enough me time. When I’m recharged I love spending time with my wife, children, sister, my three dogs, and two cats.

Which is worse, falling over or not getting back up again?

Not getting back up again…no explanation needed.

If the currency was happiness and goodwill, what job would you perform?

I’d be a farmer.

You have lost your Interney connection for ten days, there is no internet connection within 50 miles of where you live. It matters not about what you use to connect, it simply isn’t happening – what will you for those ten days?

Read, eat good food, and be outside.

…and that’s all folks!

Feel free to leave your answers in the comments! Thanks for reading!

***

Todays Word: Pick

This, That, and The Other

Moments of Expressions

Weekly Photo Challenge: People

This weeks photo challenge is simply…people.

Below are some of my favorite photos with expressions of happiness. I love it when the click of my camera happens at the right time and place to capture expressions that fade into oblivion within a matter of mere seconds. These make me smile and my hope is that they will do the same for you.

Ms Carrie
Mama and her Elf
Studious Selfie
Kisses at the Beach

…having done all to stand…stand

Oak Island NC

When you remember that you are fighting in God’s power and that He will help you…you can stand strong. When you have only what appears to be a slingshot and stones to fight with, hang on: The Lord will deliver you just as He delivered David. (365 Devotions for a Thankful Heart)

Lord, remind me of who I am in you. Remind me that I am hidden with you, within the Father, and that nothing can separate me from your love. Remind me that you will take whatever is in my hand and use it to do wondrous things for you. In your wonderful name I pray, Amen.

The Question of the Day

Well, here we go again! Rain!

Ugh, I am so tired of the stuff, so much so that I’m getting downright depressed.

Truth be known the dreary weather is not the true culprit of my depression, but heck, it sure doesn’t help it one I-otta.

Things have been a little unsteady for the last week, or so, and it has taken its toll. I hate it when I get into this funk.

Nothing inspires me…not even the things I enjoy doing like gardening, running, cooking etc. Also, all the stuff I’m not so fond of like, cleaning the house and laundry, gets pushed to the side because I just don’t have the umph to get up and do it. So things pile up and that makes me even more depressed.

It’s weird, I see the mess but I don’t know how to go about fixing it in an orderly fashion. That part of my brain has succumbed to lethargic apathy, and it’s having a hard time processing.

It’s a vicious cycle and one that only I can break.

So how do I go about doing it?

Now that’s the question of the day!

What say you, friends?

Cooking The Goose!

Is it possible that mean people are a blessing in disguise?

I’m not talking about evil people…certainly those that abuse and hurt others are never a blessing! I’m making reference to those people who “rub us the wrong way” or “get under our skin.” You know the ones…forthright, and tactless. Their words are sharp and hurtful, and they never use their tongue to uplift and edify, instead they use it to tear down and debase.

No one likes to be around someone like this. In fact, we go out of our way to avoid them.

But… Perhaps we shouldn’t.

You see, our patience is put on trial every time they grace us with their presence. Our patience literally gets a “work out” just as our muscles do when we exercise.

The apostle James writes in his book, chapter 1, verses 3 and 4, “Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.  But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”

Trials are never fun, but sometimes they can be beneficial in the growth to become a better person. I love the way Joyce Meyer puts it:

“Learning to walk in love with unlovely people and learning to be patient in trials are probably the two most important tools God uses to develop our spiritual maturity. Believe it or not, difficult people in our lives help us.”

Yes, mean people suck, but let’s “cook their goose” by allowing them to make us better!.

FYI:

Idiom- “Cook Your Goose”

Just for fun: “Use Your Noodle”

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FOWC Forthright

Word of the day: Noodle