Saturday, July 12, 2008

The day I don't matter!!

This is the first time I have posted anything on this blog. This may be the last time I post anything on here, too. I am not opposed to blogging, obviously. Most of the time I just can't think of anything to say. So since this could be the one an only, here we go.
The title of this blog is basically what I am striving for. I have spent the last year in a painful, beautiful, and all around interesting place spiritually (I hate using that word because I don't think life should be compartmentalized in to sacred and secular, but I can't think of a better word). I was thinking about it the other day and the best way I can describe it is like drinking from a fire hose. I feel like God has poured Himself out in my life in some vary astounding ways and I have loved drinking it all in. The scary part of all of this is that some times the water is coming so fast and in such great quantities that it feels like I'm drowning and I don't know how to turn in off. Not to mention the fact, that if I turn it off I don't know if I can turn it back on again.
Through all of this here is what I have come to realize. I use the word I too much. God has been showing me that all of the things that happen in this life are really about Jesus. I think if you asked most people they would say this in principle, but don't truly live life with this view. But if you read the Bible (which is all about Jesus, by the way, and when I say all I truly mean all. Every word in the Old Testament and New Testament are about Jesus) it seems to point to the ultimate reality where Jesus is before all things, in all things, and all things are held together because of Him. That means I breathe today because of Him, I eat today not because I made the food or made the money to buy the food, but because Jesus gives me food to eat. I make money because He gave me a job and gave me the capacity to think and reason. So if all that is true then all of the stuff I do in life isn't about me. Instead, it is about Him and His glory and His renown. 
This truth has brought a heavy and abiding weight to my soul. Mainly because 90% of my day is spent thinking about myself and what is good for me. 9.9% is spent thinking somewhat about other people and their feelings. I may actually squeeze Jesus into about .1% of my day, and those are the good days. But I will continue to fight and continue to struggle. Because Paul said in Galatians that the desires of the Spirit and the desires of the flesh are in complete opposition. He goes on to say that the Spirit can overcome the flesh. It is for that day I long, hope, fight, struggle and persevere. All for the day that I don't matter.


amazingly good chocolate chip cookies

These are Derek's favorite cookies, and he doesn't even like chocolate. We are having a lazy summer day, and he's been dropping hints. So, I decided to make a batch. This recipe is also from The Pastry Queen Cookbook by Rebecca Rather. (I've got no shame in the fact that just about every desert I make has her name on it.) 

I've come to the conclusion that any recipe that starts out with 1 stick of butter + 1 cup of sugar is going to taste great in the end. So, the fact that this one starts with 2 sticks of butter + 2 cups of sugar (1 granulated, 1 brown) says it all. The smell of butter, sugar, and vanilla all creamed together warms my heart. Oh, and yes, that does say 3 cups of chocolate chips.

1 1/2 c walnuts
1 1/2 c pecans
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
1 c firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 c granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 1/3 c all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 scant tsp salt
3 c chocolate cups

Preheat the oven to 350. Arrange the nuts on a baking sheet in a single layer and toast for 7-9 min. Cool and then coarsely chop.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper or grease generously. Using a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter and both sugars in a large bowl on medium speed about 1 min, until fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix on medium-low speed until incorporated.  Stir in the nuts and chocolate chips. Drop the dough in golf-ball size mounds, spacing about 1 1/2 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 min. (It's okay if the middle still looks a little raw as long as the edges are brown.) Viola!


Thursday, July 10, 2008

from everlasting to everlasting...

"Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God."  -Psalm 90:2

"tell him I am sick with love."  -Song of Solomon 5:8

"And the LORD will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail."  -Isaiah 58:11

"I lift my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber."  -Psalm 121:1-3

"Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul."  -Psalm 143:8