Posts Tagged With: fast

Fast. Cheap. Quality. Pick Two.

Let’s be honest… we are all kind of spoiled.

Now before you get all persnickety, let me explain. If you are reading this from a computer or an iPhone or some kind of technical device (yes, even if it is at work) you are sitting pretty good. If you are reading this from a place that has heat (or air conditioning, depending upon which hemisphere you reside in), you are pretty well off. And hey– I’m no exception– I’m writing this in my “comfy clothes” in my recliner, cuddling with our pup, heater running in a warm, dry house on my computer.

I think I’m doing alright.

However, we can (generally) be a pretty demanding people. Our nature, aka the fallen-ness of mankind, makes us naturally inclined to be sort of selfish. The culture that we live in via first world country can make us pretty demanding.

I don’t say all this to make us feel poopy or ungrateful. On the contrary, we should rejoice in all of these super cool blessings, experiences and gadgets in our lives.

But we also need to be very aware that sometimes when we don’t “have it all right when we want it…” We shall survive. In fact, it might be the best thing for us!

A couple of weeks ago, our pastor was addressing some leadership experiences in our church during staff meeting. Within the discussion, he mentioned that he saw a repair truck driving around town with the slogan on the side that said:

“Fast. Cheap. Quality. Pick Two.”

We all got a great laugh out of the thought, but it got me to thinking. (Dangerous, I know.)  So many of us (myself included) think that everything should be fast, cheap and quality… But in all reality, thinking we are  entitled to always having our cake and eating it too can make us ungrateful, impatient, and downright selfish.

Especially when it comes to our relationship with God.

Let’s think about it. If we want something fast and cheap, it probably won’t be quality. If we want something fast and quality, you can be it won’t be cheap. If we desire for something to be cheap and quality, well then– yep, you guessed it– it won’t be fast.

You May Pick Two

PICK TWO
Via James @ Flickr

The same thing applies when we are in a relationship with Christ. Now, don’t get me wrong– God CAN and COULD accomplish all three of these things at the same time for us per our requests– IF it is the best thing for us. But He also knows what we NEED. We can tell Him what we WANT with hope and confidence, but should rest assured that He will ultimately give us what is best for us.

Perhaps we want to fix a relationship with another person. We take it to the Lord, praying about it. Chances are that the process of healing and redemption isn’t going to be fast, cheap and quality… It could might cost us our pride, giving it up and apologizing to the other person. It could take a while and be a bit painful, but the end result is a stronger, high-quality relationship. Just an example…

Do we trust God’s plan to transform us from who we are right now to what He desires we become? In what areas of your life do you struggle with this concept the most? Which two traits you would you “pick” when it comes to being transformed? Why? Feel free to leave a comment below.

God reserves the right to transform us with any of these (and a variety of other) techniques. Let’s accept the challenge to not solely choose fast, cheap or quality… but rather, option D… Let’s choose (and accept and trust!) whatever God has for us. No matter how long it takes or how much it costs us. Because ultimately, whatever He creates in us, will eventually be the BEST QUALITY– a product of His love, grace and wisdom.

Trusting Him to Transform,
SGK

“God will create a new thing in this land: A transformed woman will embrace the transforming GOD!” ~Jeremiah 31:22 (MSG) 

Categories: transform | Tags: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Tuning Out: Media

“Sweetheart… HEELLLLLLOOOOOOOO!!!! Ahem. Can you please mute the TV so  I can talk to you?” 

We live in a society that is consumed with media. Everywhere we look– there’s a TV, computer, phone, iPad, radio waiting to grab our attention.

Don’t get me wrong. Media can be REALLY productive. I mean seriously, this entire ministry is essentially media based.

However, media can also become a time-sucking, heart-focusing idol.

“Wait, wait, wait. An idol? Seriously, Sharita? My TV/phone/computer/iPad?? “

Yes, my friend. Seriously. According to dictionary.com, an idol is “any person or thing regarded with blind admiration, adoration, or devotion.” 

Um yeah… This reason alone is why my sweet husband and I are currently in the middle of a media fast.

This idea was inspired via three different directions. First, by Jen Hatmaker’s book “7: The Experimental Mutiny Against Excess” (remember when we did the 7 foods fast a couple months ago?). Second, our pastor at church. And third?

Jesus. Let’s not forget Jesus.

A couple of weeks ago, media (TV specifically) suddenly became a source of contention in our marriage. It was dictating our time together, and between that and media in general, we started looking upon it with blind adoration and devotion.

Yeah, not OK.

So after some prayer, we decided to tune out– for a month.

Oh, and turning off the  TV isn’t the only piece of this puzzle… I have been limiting my time on Facebook to “business only” (as in, doing ministry and responding to important messages, but no browsing of other people’s business just to browse) as well as limiting time on Twitter. It is also my new policy not to check any source of media after my husband walks in the door from work. (Since he works as a drill sergeant, our time is so limited that it is dumb for me to be spending it on the computer and iPad when he is actually around.)

No TVs

Source: Mykl Roventine via Flickr Creative Commons

We are over halfway done with our media fast– and here’s where we stand:

On the issue of TV: I am LOVING it. I jokingly(ish) said I would be ok with selling the TV. My sweet husband vetoed that in a hurry. Giving up TV (we only do DVD movies and Netflix anyways) is pretty easy for me. I’m not a TV watcher. Hardly ever. The hubby, on the other hand, is a pretty huge fan of it. So it has been probably more challenging for him than me.

On the issue of Facebook/Twitter/media in general: This one has been harder for me– it’s my time filler and primary news source. It has taken some serious self-control not to burn my time just messing on Facebook because I can.

However, it has been AWESOME for our relationship. We have had more legit conversations, spend more time with the Lord and read more books than ever before. It’s really great.

(Anyone want to buy a TV? Just kidding, Brandon.)

God spoke to me last week about what this could look like after the our minimal media fast ends… I won’t go into all the details (He was pretty specific) but here is the general idea…

* On Brandon’s work days: 1 hr of TV per day after he comes home, his choice of show OR if we agree on 1 movie together, that’s ok.
*NO Facebook/Twitter/Email checking for me when Brandon finishes his hour of TV time
*On days off: No more than 3 hrs of TV per day… and shows have to be dual choice of program/compromise so we can watch together
*When we aren’t together– use media only as necessary, ensuring that we have had adequate Jesus time beforehand.

I’ve loved our non-TV and minimal media time so far and am very excited to see how God continues to use this literal quiet time to shape our marriage and relationship with Him.

Are there any areas in your life that  distract or consume you or are on the verge of being an idol in your life? Is media an issue in your household? Or has it been before? How did you deal with it? What do you think of our experiment? I always love receiving your feedback– leave a comment below!

I am so thankful that God keeps us on track– tuned out to the “stuff” in life and tuned into Him.

I don’t needa-so-much-media,
SGK

“Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.” ~1 John 5:21

Categories: God, idol | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

On our Tippy Toes (Five Minute Friday)

Hello all! We have made it to another Friday once again. (See, no matter what you do or don’t get done today, you can at least say you survived (and hopefully thrived) through another week!)

Fridays are extra special ’round these parts. It is the day where I link up with our favorite Gypsy Mama Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday.

Five Minute Friday is just like it sounds– she gives us a prompt, then we write for five minutes. Sounds easy enough, yes?

Five Minute Friday

Here’s the kicker– As we let the words flow, there is no over-thinking or editing. We just go with it and see what Jesus comes up with via our fingers in five minutes.

Today’s prompt: STRETCH

Ready? GO!

******

A cheerful (ok, slightly annoying) tune plays on my phone as my alarm rings. My eyes reluctantly flutter open. Time to face another day. I lay flat on my back, stretch my arms out as far as they go, straighten my legs, yawn and…

POP!

Ow!!! Cheese and crackers, that HURT!! What I intended to be a good morning stretch resulted in popping or pulling something in my neck/back area that hurt for 5 days. (True story.)

Sometimes, when we are stretched… it can hurt.

Yes, even when God does the stretching.

However, the best news about God stretching us is that He doesn’t injure us beyond reconciliation. Sure, it might be painful and unpleasant for a little while– but down the road, we discover that the trial or experience that stretched us was really for our own good and God’s glory.

We must allow God to stretch us in our lives, families, ministries, careers you name it. For only when we are stretched do we know how high or how far we can go in the name of Jesus.

Are you stiff and sore today in your relationship with Christ? When was the last time you have asked him to stretch you? What happens when God stretches you to your capacity? I would love to hear your thoughts– leave a comment below.

Now, if you will excuse me… God is calling me to do my daily stretching– heart tugs, open hand extensions and most of all, tippy toe calf raises as we stretch for heaven.

STOP!!

*****

Thanks for stopping by, peeps– I always appreciate your presence! May you have a wonderful and blessed weekend– and see you back here on Monday morning! (I have a lil surprise to share with all of you!)

Stretching for God,
SGK

“We’re able to stretch our hands out and receive what we asked for because we’re doing what he said, doing what pleases him.” 1 John 3:22 (MSG) 

Categories: Five Minute Friday, God | Tags: , , , , , | 8 Comments

I Choose Option B (Five Minute Friday)

After a 3 week hiatus, Five Minute Friday is BACK over here at 7 Days Time.

I will give you a moment to compose yourself. 🙂

Five Minute Friday is simple. And fun. It’s like a writing flash mob. Each Friday, I pop over and link up with The Gypsy Mama Lisa-Jo Baker. She gives us a prompt. Then we write. For five minutes flat.

No over thinking. No editing. Pure, word-flowing, Jesus inspired writing.

Five Minute Friday

And very appropriate for a Friday.

So now… Let’s get this party started!

Todays prompt: BEYOND

GO!

****

“ARE WE THERE YET?” I have to admit that this question is not utter from the mouths of babes in the backseat on a road trip… Instead, it oftentimes seems to involve my heart and a conversation with God.

I am a forward thinker. And by forward thinker, I really mean that I have a tendency to be impatient. (Great way to sugarcoat it, right? Thought so.)

We all have to be very careful not to fall in the trap of “Beyond.” Now, don’t get me wrong– beyond is a B-E-A-uitful thing. It’s exciting. It’s refreshing. It’s hope-inducing. But if we focus on too much on the beyond… we miss The Now.

“I will be happy when the house is clean…” 

“When I get my blog post written, then I can relax.” 

“I just have to make it through this ridiculous season of army insanity.” 

I am looking beyond. Yes, it keeps me moving forward… But sometimes, we just need to chill out and live in The Now.

Because God is in The Now AND the Beyond.

He’s in the clutter in my house.

He’s in the words of my blog posts.

He’s in the trials that the army throw at us.

God is in The Now. And also gives us a sweet hope in our heart of the beyond…

So we can choose:
A) To experience heaven only in the beyond, sludging through our day-to-day lives
B) To experience heaven in today AND beyond, by enjoying The Now but rejoice in The Later

I don’t know about you… but I choose option B.

STOP!

****

Five Minute Friday is always fun… mainly because I’m always surprised at what ends up from my head and heart into the scribbly words of my post. Jesus is at work… And I’m glad we can experience it.

May your weekend be filled with hope of the now… and beyond.

Beyond Blessed,
SGK

“Beyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great…” 1 Timothy 3:16 (NIV) 

Categories: Five Minute Friday, God | Tags: , , , , | 16 Comments

Think “Fast” Finale!

Oh how I missed you, my sweet tomato condiment. Welcome back.

Break out the ketchup and the frozen yogurt people! (Not together, please.) We made 30 days with only eating 7 foods.

Lemme tell you what. It was a long month. But a blessed one.

(To recap, check out last week’s update post here.)

Anywho, I am glad to say peace out to my only menu items of chicken, eggs, bread, apples, sweet potatoes, avocados, and spinach. I am excited to welcome back things like ketchup, dairy products and seasonings other than simply salt and pepper.

But even more so, I am excited for the incredible work God did in our lives in a mere 30 days. Honestly, I could probably write a week’s worth of blog posts regarding my reflections of this experiment against the mutiny of excess. However, I am going to try and spare you a 5,000 word response and hit some of the very, VERY high spots. (There were a lot of medium and low spots too.)

  • Eating only 7 foods for 30 days is hard. It limits your ability to be social since eating out is plus/minus taken out of the picture.
  • That said, our budget REALLY benefited. We are talking a few hundred bucks, people. (Probably because we didn’t spend so much time/money at the grocery store, the option to eat out was nearly non-existent, and we couldn’t buy ANYTHING from convenience stores other than water, gum or gas.)
  • I know many of you are wondering about the physical part of this challenge… Well, first of all, I slept better than I have in months. (Possibly due to the lack of caffeine and sugar in my life?) Secondly, in 30 days I lost 8 pounds. Seriously. I’m not kidding. I have been praying about breaking through a plateau I had been sitting at for months. God delivered. Oh, and this wasn’t  “I’m dropping weight but I feel like crap” like some crash diets. I think it was “Peace out sugar, my body thanks you for it.” I feel AH-MAZ-ING.
  • I have developed a new appreciation for creative and resourceful cooking. And for pepper.
  •  I love 15 minute grocery store trips.
  • We both REALLY appreciate the incredible amount of choices that we have in our life when it comes to food. (Seriously, have you BEEN down the cereal aisle lately? 379 versions of cornflakes.)
  •  We ate 198 eggs in 30 days. (That’s over 16 dozen! Glad I haven’t sprouted feathers yet.) Congratulations, Lori Lockwood! She guessed 200 and has won herself a breakfast gift card. (I will be in touch with you asap.)

Now for the “big rocks,” AKA the spiritual breakthroughs in our life:

  • I developed a hunger (literally) for the word of God. I have never spent so much time just reading the word, letting it soak in.
  • Remember my challenge for lent when I was called to give up worrying? And how my “word” for 2012 is “Dependence?” Well, guess what? This fast tied both of those things together. I have never had such a peaceful heart! The worries that used to consume me have gradually shifted into a real submission and dependence on the Lord. Don’t get me wrong, I know my battle isn’t over– I’m sure it will be lifelong– but when it comes to being faced with so many unknown factors of our future, I found TRUE comfort in the Lord. I no longer just submit with my mouth– but my heart is following suit. I couldn’t be more excited. Praise Jesus!
  • I no longer turn to food for a comfort. Instead, I pray.
  • We feel spiritually renewed, alive and more hopeful about the future than ever. It’s incredible. I wish I could describe it.

I could go on. I really could. Words really can’t describe this experience. It has been a powerful witnessing tool when we describe to other what we were doing and why. Also, it was great to watch God’s provision show up when we least expected it. (Seriously, June was avocado month at Subway. What are the chances of THAT?)

So this was a super cool experiment and all, but I don’t want it to end here… There’s a few things we have learned and want to instigate into our “normal” lives:

  • Sticking to a food/grocery/eating out budget IS possible. So we will be striving for that here on out.
  • I am going to conscious not only of calories, fat and protein in my foods, but also sugar. I never realized HOW MUCH stuff has processed sugar in it til I went cold turkey for a month. (Plus maybe this will help me continue on the path to my goal weight.)
  • Dependence on God is a lifestyle change, not just a diet. Consider it a part of my lifestyle now.
  • I am going to continue to read the word as much as possible.
  • Caffeine, cheese, ketchup, beer etc are ALL luxuries, NOT necessities. We can live without them. So we know we can cut them from our life if we have too.

Thanks so much for hanging in there with me, dear readers. It has been a challenging but enlightening month– your prayers certainly helped. We are going to continue praying about the other chapters in Jen Hatmaker’s book “7” and let you know where God takes us from here…

Now if you will excuse me… I must go plan out my first non-fasting meal. Sushi and frozen yogurt, anyone?

Fasted and Found Him,
SGK

After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” ~Matthew 4:2-4 (NIV) 

Categories: food, sacrifice | Tags: , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Think “Fast” (7 Experiment, Week 3)

7…6…5…4…3…2…1…

The countdown is on, folks! We are ¾ of the way through our 7 Foods for 30 days fasting. We are really stoked that God is working so powerfully in our lives.

And very stoked that caffeine and ketchup are soon to be back on our menu.

Set the microwave timer, folks. We are almost done!

If you are just joining us on this journey, I might recommend you take a TV time out. (or a blog time out?) to check out our previous posts about this over the last month to catch up.

Think Fast
Think Fast (Week 1 Update)
Think Fast (Week 2 Update)

Here’s a few new thoughts as to how this process is unraveling:

~We are intentionally setting aside specific blocks of time to just shut everything off and sit reading the word. Obviously this is easier for me to do than Brandon, since I have much more control over my schedule. However, we block out at least an hour on Sunday afternoon/evening to just sit, plus other periodic times in the week. It’s great.

~I am still blown away with how easy and quick grocery shopping is. Seriously. Sure, I have to go a couple of times a week since we tend to run out of a these random foods at different times (plus avocados and fresh spinach don’t last forever) but shopping now takes 15 minutes MAX compared to at least an hour or more per week.

~It’s really hard to make a deluxe apple chicken spinach salad of epicness when you are nearly out of fresh spinach. (See point above.)

~Babysitting is difficult. (No, not babysitting my husband—I mean other people’s kids.) I babysat twice last week to help some folks out, which is fine, but seeing all the tasty foods they are chowing down on make for a challenging experience. (Specifically: Popcorn at the movies, grapes and mac’n’cheese.)

~I’ve finished my 3rd batch of sweet potato soup. It’s still a great go-to food when I have no other “brilliant” ideas.

~Kudos to my sweet husband for sticking with this—He was in the field pretty much all last week, which means he can’t just run home to grab some food (and I can’t bring him anything.) He has been able to survive on MREs (Meals ready to eat) of just a beef patty/bread, as well as apples, peanut butter and bread he brought from home.

~I am currently on a French toast with applesauce as topping kick. I’ve eaten it for several breakfasts in a row and even ate it for supper last week.

~Have I mentioned that God rocks? I really enjoy the simplifying part of this project. I am getting much more done and spending more time with Him.

~We still miss caffeine, cheese and ketchup. But hanging strong. Almost there, America!

Oh, and in case you missed the memo from the last couple of weeks—we are doing a giveaway. Leave a comment below your guess as to how many eggs we will consume in this 30 day time frame to win a gift card to your favorite breakfast restaurant.

If you have already guessed before, you can enter again with a new guess.  You only have 7 days left to enter—I will be announcing the winner on next Tuesday’s wrap up blog post.

One more thing: Many of you have commented/texted/emailed/facebooked us to say that you are praying for us throughout this journey. We appreciate it. We feel them working (and it has helped us to stay strong and not give in to the temptations of mac’n’cheese, sushi or beer (Brandon)/Frozen yogurt (Me.)

The end is in sight… Come back next week to see how this month turns out. I will announce the gift card winner as well as share any profound developments God has placed on our heart.

Until then… Can someone pass the spinach?

Simplifying our Snacks,
SGK

“The Spirit of God whets our appetite by giving us a taste of what’s ahead. He puts a little of heaven in our hearts so that we’ll never settle for less.” ~2 Corinthians 5:5 (MSG)

Categories: food, God | Tags: , , , , , | 16 Comments

Bravocado, Jesus! (Factor of 7)

Few things in this life make my heart overflow with joy more than when God turns a trial into a blessing.

That was certainly the case in our latest “Factor of 7” for the month of June.

My beloved and I were in Fort Stewart for his eye surgery. (To read the back story, click here.) We were doing our best to enjoy ourselves—but when you are dealing with army hospitals and/or their plans and/or the fact that we were traveling/fasting/ eating only 7 foods for a month, it can prove to be a bit challenging.

However, I was trying so, so hard to cling to my key verse for the day found in 1 Corinthians 10:10– “And do not grumble, as some of them did…” Honestly, I thought I was doing pretty good… until we made it to suppertime.

We made the mistake of not doing appropriate recon before deciding what to do for supper. I had brought food with us from home to make meals in the hotel room, but sweet Brandon was convinced that we could eat out and be fine.

Big mistake. It was easy for him—I mean, most restaurants in America can do something that involves plain beef and normal potatoes—but my fasting requirements were a little more restrictive.

He picked Chili’s—so off we went. We sat down and I scanned the menu. Oh dear. This was going to be difficult.

I frantically scanned the menu to find something that would accommodate my need for only eggs, chicken, bread, apples, sweet potatoes, spinach or avocado. The only thing I could come up with? A plain grilled chicken sandwich with avocado.

It was the third meal in a row that I had that almost exact food combination. I nearly cried. (But held strong. Barely. Thanks, Jesus.)

We ended up explaining to our waitress Heather why we had “weird food” requests. We told her about the fast and a little bit about Jesus. At the end of our meal, we asked Heather how we could pray for her. She blinked her eyes for a moment and briefly mentioned that she was currently having some financial struggles… Duly noted.

I got up to go to the restroom since I had been chugging water trying to fill up my stomach. Brandon and I had been talking earlier in the day about what we should do for our monthly Factor of 7 act of kindness. Up until that point, we had nothing. But  when I came back from the restroom, my sweet husband asked if she could be our “Factor of 7.” He thought that since she was struggling financially,  he we should leave her at $107 tip.

I was speechless. Not only was I touched at the thought, I was downright impressed at my husband’s ability to piece that all together. (Amazing what the Holy Spirit can do, huh?) Oh, and I have NEVER been more in love with that man than at that very moment. (BE STILL MY HEART!!)

So that’s what we did. We left her a $107 tip with a note that said: “Heather, we hope that this tip is just the beginning of many answered prayers. $100 because God loves you more than you can imagine, and $7 because we all have 7 Days Time each week to share that love. God bless.”  We left her a 7 Days Time Ministry card and departed the restaurant.

My stomach might have still been a little empty as we left that restaurant—but my heart was full.

How has blessing someone else blessed you? We would love your feedback. Please leave your comments below!

So today,  we are thankful for Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives, guiding us and inspiring us to do His will in the most unexpected of places. We praise Him for turning our small trials into His triumphs.

We rejoice in the fact that God can take something small like another avocado chicken sandwich and transform it into a huge blessing.

And for that, we say Bravocado, Jesus.

Blessed by blessing,
SGK

 “Bravo, God, Bravo! Everyone join in the great shout: Encore! In awe before the beauty, in awe before the might.” –Psalm 96:7 (MSG)

Categories: blessings, challenge, Christ, Courage, evangelism, Factor of 7, positive | Tags: , , , , | 18 Comments

Think “Fast” (7 Experiment, Week 1)

It has been one week of eating only eggs, chicken, bread, apples, sweet potatoes, avocado, and spinach. That’s right folks. I’m eating only 7 foods for thirty days.

If you missed last week’s entry about this fast, let me catch you up. (Or you can click here to read the entire post.) My beloved hubby and I are fasting for 30 days by only eating 7 different foods. Only water to drink. No seasonings other than salt, pepper, olive oil (sparingly) and cooking spray.  This concept is inspired by Jen Hatmaker’s book “7: The Experimental Mutiny Against Excess.” In short, it has two main purposes: to seek after God at a deeper level and to restore a heart of gratitude for all the incredible choices we have in this world.

We started on June 4, so we are one week into our experience. In two words: EPIC. CHALLENGING.

The first two days kinda sucked. Like, a lot. My beloved and I both had a headache, which honestly was to be expected. We were no longer drinking any caffeine. Plus, I was probably going through sugar withdrawal.

But once we made it through Monday and Tuesday? It has been epic. We are using the extra time that we would have normally spent grocery shopping/cooking/discussing what’s for supper to spend time in prayer and in the word.

Additionally, this has been awesome for our food budget. Great for our heart. And our physical bodies feel pretty incredible.

PLUS (yes, it goes on) God has brought out my hidden gift for creative and resourceful cooking. Seriously, I have created more shockingly tasty meals with limited foods than I have in my entire adult life. Here’s a brief glimpse of some of my creations:

Breakfast:

  • Power breakfast sandwich– egg, avocado, shredded chicken on toast
  • Eggs & toast
  • French toast with unsweetened applesauce
  • Scromlet– scrambled eggs, spinach, shredded chicken
  • Fritatta– eggs baked with shredded chicken & spinach with avocado on top

Lunch/Supper:

  • Spinach salad including any/all of the following– shredded chicken, avocado, spinach, apple, hard boiled egg, salt, pepper, olive oil
  • Sweet Potato Chicken soup– chicken stock, chicken, sweet potatoes, salt/pepper (BEST. INVENTION. EVER.)
  • Baked Chicken dredged in egg and coated in bread crumbs
  • Egg/chicken/avocado salad sandwich (It looks a little funny  but tastes fine)

Snacks:

  • Dried apple chips (homemade)
  • Toast with unsweetened applesauce
  • Hard Boiled egg
  • Croutons (homemade)
  • Apple Leather (it’s like a fruit roll up, homemade out of applesauce put in the dehydrator)

My sweet potato chicken soup and spinach salad… with homemade croutons. Nutritious, colorful AND tasty. Thanks, Jesus!

God has really brought about a new, refreshed and grateful heart in the both of us. He has also revealed how I turn to food when I am stressed– but now I am turning to Him first. Here’s to returning to our First Love!

So in short, it’s going great. Definitely still challenging every time I pass by a Starbucks or see free oranges for the taking at the gym. (And don’t get me started on the Diet Dr. Pepper situation.) But guess what… I have one more surprise for you.

I am doing a giveaway at the end of this experience. The prize will be… well, a surprise. (But it won’t be lame. I promise.)

To enter, you can share this post via Facebook, Twitter, email etc. You can like my Facebook page if you haven’t already done so. But to make it an “official” entry, leave a comment below with your guess of how many eggs my husband and I will consume by the end of this fast. (Hint: We like eggs.)

Random, I know. But hey, don’t judge me– I haven’t had any sugar or caffeine for a week. 🙂 Plus, I think it is going to be eggstremely entertaining.

What do you think so far? We would love your feedback–leave a comment (and your eggsact guess) below.

Loving this Jesus eggsperience,
SGK

“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.” –John 6:35

Categories: blessing, budget, challenge, Christ, food, God, gratitude, life | Tags: , , , , , , , | 30 Comments

Think “Fast”

The sand was warm underfoot. The water flowed gently, the current making a gentle swishing sound. Puppy Justus was exploring, sniffing, digging and splashing. I was reading the first chapter of a book out loud to my husband.

It’s amazing how simple, serene moments can change your life so quickly.

My beloved and I were enjoying a sliver of time last Saturday, relaxing in our mushroom chairs on the pseudo “beach” area near a small river on Fort Benning. I had recently gotten a copy of Jen Hatmaker’s book 7: An Experimental Mutiny against Excess. The general premise of the book deals with the fact that we live in a society obsessed with stuff. The book documents Jen’s month-by-month experiment to eliminate the “junk” in life. Each month, the author chose a different area of her life to focus on.  Month #1? Food.

For 30 days, Jen ate only 7 different types of food. I was intrigued by this book right away, mainly because there has been quite a buzz in the writing community– plus we all already know how magnetic the number 7 has become to this ministry.

Wanna join the party? Click the image to get yourself a copy of this remarkable book!

As I finished reading the first chapter out loud to Brandon on the “beach,” he turned to me and said: “Ok, wife. I say chicken, eggs, bread…”

Wait. WHAT? I was floored. If I wasn’t sitting down, I certainly would have fallen over. My husband actually wanted to DO this?!? I mean, I had considered briefly and sort of pitched it to him a couple of weeks ago, but he looked at me like I was crazy.  I continued to pray about it, the whole idea weighing on my heart… But when he started naming and numbering foods indicating that he wanted to participate, I couldn’t help but be shocked. (The book was very convincing. Thanks, Jen.)

Oh. Plus he’s a man. An army man at that. Food is in his top 3 most important needs. Seriously.

So yes. My beloved and I started the first month of this “experiment” yesterday. It has already opened my eyes to just HOW MANY food choices we really do have and our fingertips and can easily afford. Honestly, its kind of blowing my mind. (If you want more info, get a copy of the book. It will change your life. Or at least your perspective.)

From June 4th to July 4th, my husband is only permitting himself to eat chicken, eggs, bread, beef, apples, peanut butter and potatoes. My menu choices are similar: chicken, eggs, bread, apples, sweet potatoes, avocado and spinach.

That’s it. We are only permitted to season with salt, pepper, olive oil and use cooking spray.

This is gonna get crazy, folks. I’ve barely started and am already seeking God more deeply than I could imagine. (Not to mention rejoicing at the free time of trying to decide what to cook for supper– chicken or… chicken?)

I am so excited (ok, and really nervous) at the potential spiritual growth that will result. Challenging but worth it. Oh, and let ‘s not forget how kind this will be to our time and budget. (I am anticipating some productive physical changes too.) I will be periodically keeping you all updated as we go.

Yes, there are a few things I already miss. Cheese. Diet Dr. Pepper. Chocolate. Salsa. My beloved protein bars. But I am so grateful that I still have PLENTY of food in my fridge, even if it is in “limited” varieties.

Brandon and I would appreciate your prayers as we work through this experience the next month or so. My sweet mother-in-love has joined us on this journey and if you feel so led, pick up a copy of Jen’s book and come with us as we seek the Lord.

Have you ever fasted before? What was it like? What do you think about our quest? Wanna join in? Leave a comment below!

To paraphrase Jen: “Jesus, may there be less of us and our junk and more of You and Your Kingdom.” 

It’s scary. It’s awesome. It’s hunger-inducing. But we are grateful for this opportunity to think “fast.”

Is-it-just-me-or-is-it-hungry-in-here,
SGK

“You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.” –Matthew 5:6 (MSG) 

Categories: adventure, attitude, challenge, changes, Christ, food, gratitude | Tags: , , , , , , | 27 Comments

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