I just couldn’t shake the nagging nausea. I hoped it wasn’t the flu that was going around. The surprise I felt when a fellow teacher suggested I might be pregnant led me to a pregnancy test which brought even more surprise – and delight! The mixture of nagging nausea and surprise and joy should have tipped me off to what was ahead. However I was much too young and inexperienced at life in general to understand that the journey into motherhood would forever change everything about me.

Now some 30+ years later, my four children continue to stretch me and delight me and scare me and change me.

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8As of late, I’ve been thinking more about food. My husband and I have been on a quest to get healthier, lose weight, and exercise more. We’ve taken some time to evaluate our food habits. We’ve identified some pits that we often fall in (M & M’s and late night Honey Nut Cheerios) and made plans to avoid them. We’ve stocked our refrigerator with healthier foods and taken to the treadmill.

One thing I’ve definitely become more aware of is that some foods satisfy hunger much better than others. Another thing I’ve found is that some foods actually increase my hunger.

While physical hunger drives us to choices, both good and bad, spiritual hunger can also drive us to choices, both good and bad.

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imagesCould you use some extra strength today? Next week? This year? There is a way to find it.

We all understand that our physical body can be strengthened through exercise and nutrition, through getting focused on making good choices one day at a time, over and over and over until we can tangibly experience the results of those changes. But how often we fail to strengthen our spiritual life!

Now I know that some of you felt weary and tired when you even considered the idea of strengthening your spiritual life. You have tried that before and ended up crashing somewhere like a rocket that ran out of fuel.

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Jan
01

Daring to Dream in 2016

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1 image of 2016

Standing on the cusp of this New Year, I wonder what all God has planned for my life this year.

He spoke very specifically to me at the end of 2014 about the year that would come in 2015. I have stood amazed, watching as His plans for me unfolded before my eyes.  God took the initiative. He made the plans. I joined Him in them.  He revived old dreams and birthed new ones in my heart.

As He intends for our lives to go from one level of glory to another, I pause to listen to what He will say for this next year expecting it to be full of His plans.

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Lawrence2015Holiday-84A quiet expectancy dances in my heart. The holiday season is on my doorstep.

I prepare to receive my family and guests. Meals are planned as my daughter and I make the menu and think of the favorite recipes each family member loves. There will be smoked turkey this year. A green bean casserole that is made from scratch – no canned mushroom soup in this one. Sweet potato casserole (recipe follows) and mashed potatoes, too. Macaroni and Cheese made with smoked Gouda and other delightful cheeses. Dressing and a special cranberry sauce. Purple hull peas and piping hot rolls with butter. Cheesecake and Maple Walnut Cream Pie and Apple Pie and Chocolate Chip Cookies and Pumpkin Snicker Doodles. Carbohydrates and sugars will be temporarily welcomed to the table in great numbers. Old and new recipes guide our work. (Ah, so many good recipes and so little time to both prepare them and eat them.)The cooking has already begun.  Last minute trips to the grocery have happened and will continue to happen. 

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