Teach Me

“Teach me your ways, O LORD, that I may live according to your truth! Grant me purity of heart, so that I may honor you.” – Psalm 86:11 (NLT)


Perhaps, the better amount of rainfall this past year has helped some of our fruit trees to flourish. I noticed the plum tree has given more fruits this time. I love the crispy flesh and some being sweet while the others are a little tart if, unfortunately, are plucked early from the tiny, jutted out branches. Despite the numerous flowers that fell few months ago, snatched by gusty, late afternoon winds, my family and I are happy and are grateful to be able to enjoy them this time. And share with friends.






I still wish sometimes that my late mother has taught me how to cook. She often would tell me to go upstairs and to start doing my homework. I knew better then that she wasn’t teaching me “laziness” nor “spoiling her only girl”. She was a good cook who had a hard task of creating savory recipes, while balancing the budget among six of her children. Some left overs were re-purposed but as expected, no little mouths ever complained. Plates were empty. The only argument was who would wash the plates...



ready to bake
Back to the present time…I don’t think I can eat all of the plums. I want to make something. But don’t know where to start. 

Thanks for the internet nowadays. Type a word and within an instant, there are few sites to explore. Recipes to be experimented.

 I noticed the “Plum Crisp” that came out first. My heart chose! 

“That’s it!” So, while it was a sweltering heat going on outside the house, I tried to make the concoction, tweaking the recipe a bit, because I liked vanilla and cinnamon with baked products. 

No hard decision when it came with the sugar. I drastically cut the amount knowing that the plums were sweet already and that…even before I envisioned the baked plum crisp, I drooled with the thought of putting vanilla ice cream on top!


After a few minutes, the sweet aroma that filled the kitchen reached my son's sense of smell upstairs, as he was checking his submitted project online. He ran downstairs and joined me to dig and scoop some "plum crisp" even though the plums on the bottom were still bubbling. "Who's got the time to wait???" 

plum crisp anyone?

The cold vanilla bean ice cream on top was a great contrast to the hot fruit. Delicious! It was a perfect ending after our salad for lunch. 


And I thought about my mother again...That there was a good reason for her not to teach me how to cook. She wanted me to finish my education so I could pursue what God truly had gifted me with. She didn't want me to take the path she was in. She wanted me to discover my own. She didn't teach me how to cook. But she taught me the most important gift from her heart. To discover and finish what God had instilled in me. She sacrificed so I could have a better education. The greatest gift she could share with me. Cooking could be learned. But nothing could ever beat wisdom...

I will continue to search thousands of recipes day after day. But I know my heart was given "faith" first. Then, wisdom. From God... His ways and truth shared and handed down to me. By my loving mother. 

"Drink water! Go and finish your project!" I hollered to my son. I am...Sounding like my mother...

I am...desiring to be like Jesus... I am..."I Am..."

Teach me Your ways, Oh Lord...

Learning To Trust and Slow Down

Source
I have no idea my family and I would be talking a lot about “traffic” several years after settling in this beautiful, quiet area where we live in. Many houses are built and along with that, as expected, many people are attracted to move here.


I am grateful now for the Google maps as they help me and my family navigate the back roads we have not known or taken before. But true enough, at least, we arrive at our destinations in one piece.


We know better now… To go grocery shopping when most people are at work or their children at school. To stay at home than go out on weekends when everyone seems to be in a caravan, one car joining after another to an already congested traffic on major freeways. Lots of accidents are in the headlines daily. It does feel like a major battle when I am out on the road, hoping, praying for God’s protection that I make it. Back and forth. No matter how careful I am, many are careless out there and are always tempted to break the laws just so they can get ahead of others.


Growing up, I shared Proverbs 3:5,6 with my son. I believe that when each day starts, trusting in the Lord is very important before we make decisions, whether it concerns simple or major decision-making. He has memorized it among the other life-giving verses we meditate on.


With this dilemma on the road, this verse helps me a lot and reminds me the importance of depending on Him no matter where I go, no matter what I do. When I feel that I need to take the back roads instead of taking a risk on busy, major roads, I always realize that not only do I enjoy the peace and quiet but also I am able to see new things that I never know exist along those back roads before. The process of reaching intended places takes longer at times, but in reality, in being able to slow down, I have lower and even "zero" risk of being injured.


It has been going on for a year or two now that I take the back roads on and off.


How I learn each time I slow down! That in my life, God slows me down sometimes in order for me to realize that aside from the importance of trusting in Him always, the right things seem to have a chance to catch up with my life’s journey.


I see this also with my son. With frustration in his goal to become a Graphic Designer few months ago, God has shown him ways that His alternative is better (Of course!) than what is being required from most schools. He is pursuing this in a different way, yet he feels free instead of being pressured, and in reality, will make him be able to finish on the right track than before.


I see this with my husband. His initiated early, daily prayer between us before he goes to work and with our son, joining hands again each night, thankful because the three of us are all witnesses to God’s constant protection, guidance, provision, discernment and most of all, His love.

So, I’ll end this post this way:

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.” – Proverbs 3:5,6 (NLT)

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Encouragers

The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]


Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.


Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.


All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.


When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.


The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.


When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.


[Source: Life Application Bible]:


We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.


“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14


Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].


Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.


Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.


Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].

Friends