This easy to prepare cake is full of carrots, pineapple, raisins and walnuts. It is super low-fat, yet it is sweet and moist; topped with a frosting …Vegan Carrot Cake with Cashew Cream Frosting
This past weekend I was able to speak to my high school kids about the concept of unity, explaining not only what it means, but that every act of unity is not actually beneficial for our culture and for people in general. When you think of the word unity what comes to mind? Normally when I think of unity I think of people of different background; socio-economic, religious, cultural and the like coming together for a common purpose. This definition is true. If you look up the definition of unity on google it will define the term as, the state of being united or joined as a whole. If you look up the word unity in the actual dictionary (Merriam-Webster to be exact) you will see it has 6 definitions: 1. oneness, 2. harmony or accord, 3. unification, 4. entity of a systematic whole, 5. a single action represented on one day or place, and 6. a 20th century American religious movement that emphasizes spiritual sources of health and prosperity. If you decide to also look up the word unity in a bible dictionary (Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary to be exact) you would see the word is defined as, a state of being undivided; having oneness, a condition of harmony.
Why are the definitions of this word relevant? Unity in our country and world can look very different depending on where you are in the world, who you are, what you are standing up for, and who you are standing up with. The picture of unity (depending on the above) can be widely accepted or completely detestable to others. I think along with many other lessons this pandemic has taught us this past year is the lesson that mankind is not meant to be alone. We were made for relationship with others and give love and receive love. When we are united to others we can do amazing things! But going back to the original question, are all acts of unity beneficial to others and/or for the common good?
In Acts 2:1 the bible gives a beautiful picture of unity where it says, ‘When the day of Pentecost came they were all together in one place.’
This is the gathering of people in one mind and heart praising our good Lord and savior Jesus Christ as they received the Holy Spirit 10 days after Christ ascended back to Heaven! Of course this is an absolute perfect example of unity. In our culture within different religions and ethnic backgrounds there are movements of ‘acquired unity‘ all around. There are families coming together for a common purpose (and because they’re family of course), they are people of similar beliefs and organizations getting together for a cause all the time. After all, when people work together it is much more effective than working alone. The thing about unity though, if you are a Christian, it should be backed by Godly standards or at the very least not stand against what the word of God says. For example, last year I had the privilege of walking with thousands of women and men in the united front of being pro-life and standing up for those who have no voice. It was a wonderful experience and something I believe God himself was a part of, because it stood for life.
Like I explained to my bible study class not all acts of unity are beneficial. If the act of unity goes against Godly standards or his word, it is not a movement to stand behind no matter what the billboards say or what the leader tries to persuade you of. For example, the Pro-Choice Movement is not something God would back as it takes away innocent life thus not a beneficial movement to support, neither other Movements that promote pride, hate, and lawlessness which go against the word of God. How do you know the action of unity goes against the word of God? Is the movement bringing good things or breeding dissension and division? Is the movement bringing anxiety and even segregation, then it is most likely not a movement that is beneficial. When the movement is moving away from the things of the spirit and works primarily in the things of the flesh. Am I saying all these people are terrible and evil no I am saying the things they are doing and standing for are going against Godly morals and standards thus we, as Christ followers cannot stand with them in good conscience. Every person is made in God’s image, we are love everyone, we are to pray for them, but not support what goes against the Lord. He is our first priority.
Galations 5:19-21 says the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fists of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherent the kingdom of God.
Galations 5:21-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
So you see, unity can be a beautiful thing when honoring God in the midst, it can also be a dangerous, destructive thing when done with pride, arrogance, and strife against the word of God. Know who and what you stand for and stand with those who stand with God. This is the time to be bold and stand up in His name when it appears our culture has another agenda.
‘For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many, Matthew 24:5.
The times, they are a changing. But God..He doesn’t change. The bible says He is the same today, tomorrow, and forever. As we see the pandemic virtually destroy people’s businesses, people’s health, and people’s hope we see more people search for healing and peace everywhere they can to obtain what feel they need to get through these difficult times.
In addition to the need for physical healing, the pandemic has had a detrimental effect on people’s mental health as well. Pandemics now and in the past have all had similar affects on public health; they have affected us physically and mentally. During a global pandemic people are living in a state of urgency and the need to ‘be safe.’ News highlights of death tolls everyday and the need for vaccines to eradicate the dreaded virus puts us in a constant state of worry and stress. To add to the uncertainty and confusion, people are feeling psychological stressors like fear, anxiety, separation and loss of loved ones, social isolation, and living with financial burdens (Srivastava, et al., 2020).
Throughout history it has been shown in times of disasters and global crisis events, people turn to God. This has been going on since the beginning of time and mankind. This is not strange as it says in the word of God, humans are made in the image of God and no matter how much we try to dismiss His existence, when times are uncertain and in constant change (which is our culture as well) we look for peace, comfort, and steadfastness to calm the storm. This can be good when leading one into the arms of The Lord, the true God, however, it can be dangerous since this same person can be easily led astray and into the arms of a false god, and a false gospel. Please be aware there are thousands of churches around the world, some claiming Jesus as the Messiah, some claiming Allah as the true god and other paths say there are many ways to Heaven. Be informed, just because the name ‘church’ is on the sign and on the front door of a building does not mean that truth is being spoken in that building. There are so many false prophets leading thousands down the wrong path, especially in this time of ambiguity and distress when people cling on to anything they can that resembles peace and safety. So in searching and seeking physical peace, happiness, and security people will essentially be trading this for the spiritual or eternal peace, joy, and security that is provided in Christ alone.
I have recently watched the documentary, American Gospel: Christ Alone, and it demonstrates this point very well along with pointing out many of the false teachers I have spoken about above. Please watch with an open mind and open heart praying to the true God for wisdom to discern the truth and not be deceived. Pray to God Almighty, the true of Lord of our life, Christ the Messiah who came for us as the savior this world we so desperately need. If you don’t know him as your Lord please know He is available you, you only have to believe and repent with sincerity of heart and you will be saved.
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Srivastava, K., Chaudhry, S., Sowmya AV, & Prakash, J. (2020). Mental health aspects of pandemics with special reference to COVID-19. Industrial Psychiatry Journal, 29(1), 1–8. https://doi-org.ezproxy.lib.uwf.edu/10.4103/ipj.ipj_64_20
It’s been a while since I’ve written I know! Life and work have been ‘COVID crazy!’ I just wanted to bring a moment of normal, a moment of encouragement to all you moms and wives out there who may be dealing with stress in your marriage during this time (amongst other things). In a world that says, ‘take care of yourself’ and ‘remember self-care is life,’ just remember if you’re married than sometimes putting self first comes 2nd. This is an important concept in marriage because as you put the other first and make that person feel happy and important than your marriage tends to be more at peace, thus putting you at peace as well.
My husband and I have been married for 24 years and have been through many difficulties over the years (enough to warrant divorce a couple of times over), but after many lessons learned and, most importantly, giving our lives entirely to Jesus our savior and Lord we have learned each other pretty well. For instance, I have learned that my husband needs time with me often and this can simply be sitting together without an agenda, but that’s what he needs as well as other things that men require that is oh so important in a relationship! Men are very physical beings, remember that;-) And over the years my husband has learned that I am a very independent person and need to be away from distractions to be able to fully focus on him! I also love learning and being outside. The five love languages can be a powerful tool for your marriage. There is a helpful book called, The Five Love Languages,’ by Gary Chapman, highly recommend! (Just a hint..I used to always do things aka ‘acts of service’ for my husband and that was my love language not his..it doesn’t work, his is quality time and physical touch).
To give an example of making your spouse a priority is when you are both working many hours and are tired, yet you wake up early with him and spend time with him instead of going to exercise with a girlfriend, because you like to be physically active (not everyday, but you know when your husband needs your attention) Or it could mean watching his crime show with him after work even if you just want to get on Tik Tok and ‘veg out.’ When the rest of the world says take time for yourself (which is important) constantly you must remember you have a person that under the covenant of God is part of you. It says in Mark 10:8, “and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.” Remember with all the chaos in the world right now your spouse and significant other should be your best friend, your lover, your consistent partner in crime, your calm in the storm (although your spouse is only human, Jesus however is always constant and never changes, he is our rock). Be there for one another and let God use your marriage as a firm foundation for each other and for your family. God bless you all and stay safe!
As I enjoy my day off cleaning and cooking, I find I am thinking on the word legacy today and how many different definitions that one word can have in a person’s life. The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word, legacy as ‘money or property given to another’ and another definition is ‘something handed down from an ancestor, one’s heritage.’ In Proverbs 13:22 it does mention heritage when it says, ‘A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.‘ Does this mean that a legacy is something of monetary value we leave to our families? Is that all that is required? If this is the case we can work our butts off and then leave our kids a little something after we’re gone and that should suffice right? As stated in the dictionary definition, a legacy we leave for our families can be something of monetary value, but it can also be our heritage, our culture, our special recipes, family traditions etc. These are all so important and what makes us who we are. We all have special grandma recipes, family vacations spots, even a vocational trade or family farm that has been passed onto us or to our family from previous generations. These traditions are so special to us and usually makes us think of our families that have passed on when we participate in these things.
This week I have been thinking on the importance of legacy for future generations due to a special person who passed on recently, Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias. I think on the incredible legacy he has passed on to his immediate family as well as his Christian family simply on the way he loved The Lord and defended his faith so intensely. What a gift he left behind. No matter how much money he had or didn’t have to pass onto his family, what he did pass on what worth more than all the money in the world! In John 15:16 The Lord said, ‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.’
I often think on the kind of legacy I am passing onto my own family and I am grateful everyday I can share with them the real, raw me. I can show them how important the job of being a good wife and mother is and how it should never be underestimated as God has gifted us with that role. How important reputation is and how hard it is to get it back once it’s been tarnished. And how a good reputation follows you wherever you go and stands by you even in your absence. How I can teach them, by example, it’s okay to mess up and that no one is perfect, but it’s what you do with that failure that matters. How forgiveness can truly heal a person’s heart and how great it feels to give to others instead of always expecting things from people. I hope my kids understand the vital importance of living a life of integrity no matter who’s watching and working hard as for The Lord in all we do no matter how simple or difficult the task. Lastly, and most importantly, that I can share Jesus with them. They cannot get Jesus from me they have to accept Him on their own, but they can see an imperfect person living her life for The Lord and all that comes with it. They can see up close and personal the blessings that come with this life, as well as the struggles that this life can bring. And in God’s timing when I leave this earth they can see much I will be looking forward to living a life in the presence of the King of Kings!
You see, a life in The Lord is the most special, precious gift you can leave your children. Knowing that whether they are living for God right now or not nothing we do in His name will ever be in vain. The fruit we bear in this life will abide, it will last for generations in Jesus name and that is such a wonderful thought and a beautiful legacy to leave…
The righteous who walks in his integrity— blessed are his children after him! Proverbs 20:7
Even though SARS-CoV-2, or other wise known as the coronavirus, has slowed us down in the business of life I feel as though it has given us time to appreciate the simplicities so much more. My husband and I just returned from a 4 day beach get-a-way and it was much needed! Waking up to the view of the Gulf of Mexico and winding down to the sunset of Treasure Island beach was so simple and yet so worth our time and effort to make it happen. Enjoying such simplicities in life was also paired with learning new things such as how fun it could be to listen to an audiobook with my husband (and both of us be interested in it) as well as truly enjoying paddle-boarding and all that goes with it! When I woke up this morning after a week off I had to catch up on errands and ‘mommy things’ left behind during our get-a-way such as; waking up making my husband a little something before he leaves for work, followed by a good sweat-filled workout (which I so missed btw), then filling out some cards and mailing them off was how I began my day..
Filling out a hand-written card or letter to someone for a special occasion or for no occasion at all is really under-estimated. One of my good friends and spiritual mom says she used to love getting hand-written cards in the mail and hardly ever receives them anymore (she says she hates getting text messages for such occasions). With your spare time maybe try writing in a journal about your life journey or your blessings instead of thinking on the negative things that has happened to you lately. Even thinking of a person who has really made a difference in your life and sending them a letter or card of gratitude can be such a blessing for both parties involved. They may need to hear it more than you may need to write it! God works like that;)
Another thing I truly enjoy doing and tried to do even when life was super crazy busy is make my husband some of his favorite foods. I love serving him that way and, likewise, he likes to make me special dinners as well. Over the years I have transitioned to a mostly plant-based cuisine and he follows a keto-plan, but we do try to make it work. Days where I eat a southwest bean salad he might eat a beef-based taco salad (without the chips). Lately, I have been interested in making him some of the cultural dishes he grew up on. His mom is from the Philippines so he loves Pancit and Adobo Chicken as well as authentic Italian food from his dad’s side like Eggplant Parmesan and Stuffed Shells! I think during this pandemic instead of the message of fear, isolation, and loneliness the message can and should be one of hope, love, and gratitude. Do your best I know you can do it. Someone needs to hear hope and feel love from you today.
Happy Cinco de Mayo and Taco Tuesday to you;-) I have an article about a topic I’m passionate about and about a testimony I have experienced which God continues to use in my life. I have turned my testimony into a story.. I submitted my story to a Nursing Journal recently and got rejected due to it being not so much about nursing practice and more about my own personal story. How do I self publish? If you have experience in this area or even have a journal you are connected to please let me know! This is for nurses who publish and all writers. Thank you!
Good day to you. As I am enjoying my day off with my bike riding and cooking a yummy vegan 3 bean chili with my instant pot I am also praying and contemplating my next step in God’s plan. Notice I didn’t say my plan, because despite the multiple times I have run this round in my head and applied to different universities I have yet still not gone to grad school. ‘In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps,’ Proverbs 16:9.
So you see I am a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor’s Degree and have been for many years. I love my job very much and have had the opportunity to experience many different things within my career as well as seen God’s hand and grace in it all. Many times I have applied for this ‘next step’ or this next title only to be told by The Lord to wait or sometimes even no. It can be frustrating at times to have your mind made up and think you know what’s best for you and what the next step ‘should be’ or even feel the need to fill some unspoken quota expected by others due to your accomplishments or age or both. Yes, I said it, there are expectations of every person whether someone says it to you or not. Growth is expected of course and encouraged, promotion and change is even expected depending on your job title or field of study. I wonder, do you feel like this? Do you feel like after so many years of doing a job, it’s just an expectation of you to move up? If you don’t move up then it’s because you are not doing enough, not motivated enough, not smart enough, just not enough..
At the end of the day who are you moving up for? Who are you working for? Who’s approval are you seeking? If you’re seeking your supervisor’s approval or coworker’s approval you will not be satisfied with that. Man will not be ever able to satisfy. We simply can’t make everyone happy all the time. That’s why it’s important to do what is on our hearts to do for ourselves, but more than that for The Lord. You see, once you have The Holy Spirit and you are living your life for God you are no longer your own, you were bought at a price and you will be fulfilling His calling. Sometimes that means He gets you that promotion, sometimes that means you stay where you are even when you want to move. Sometimes that means swallowing your pride and staying in a job that other people feel like are beneath them or that you should have long been out of. That’s the difference between living for Christ and living for the approval of man. When you are following His will you may look odd to others, but you look beautiful to The Lord and you are EXACTLY where He wants and needs you to be. This is called being in the will of God. When you are fully walking in the will of God you will know, because you will be at peace.
Until you are at peace, it is important when making major life changes and choices as a Christian you pray and seek His wisdom. He will give us the direction we seek. The answer God gives us may not come as we think, it may not come when we think or how we think it will, but just know because we are His children it will come, nonetheless, and we have to trust in that. We see a glimpse of life, but He sees all. This brings me to one of my favorite scriptures..
Don’t be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication and with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God and the peace that surpasses all understanding will the guard the hearts and minds of Christ Jesus, amen! Philippians 4:6-7
I will share lessons I have learned along the way in another blog post sometime it is interesting to say the least and may help someone find their way possibly! Until I tell the rest of this story, just know that if you are a child of God and you unsettled in your spirit as to what the next step in life to take go to Him in pray and trust Him with your life. He is worth working for, He is worth waiting on, and He is worth giving all the praise! There are so many testimonies of when I waited on Him and what happened as a result. Many times I was denied a job I was well qualified for and when I was look down at, because I wasn’t getting my Master’s degree yet or still in bedside nursing, but the beautiful stories I can tell you of His grace because I trusted and waited on Him. God bless you as you wait on Him! He sees you and you are enough through Christ thank God!
I am thrilled to be able to start blogging once again, but since I am starting back I would like to get your input! I am nurse, a mom, a grandma (nana), a wife, a health nut, a plant-based cuisine lover, a scrap-booker, an essential oil user, and a strong believer in our Lord Jesus Christ. Based on these things what would you like me to blog on that would interest you the most! Please comment below and I will get started 🙂 I want to do the most good I can while honoring The Lord using my voice as a positive influence and contribution to this beautiful world. Have a blessed day!
But in your hearts revere Christ as LORD. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 1 Peter 3:15.
As people tackle the everyday in quarantine and possibly have more time to think about life than they may have ever had before they may tend to think of deep things like; the meaning of life, death, and purpose. People have been understandably anxious about the unknown and fearful of the possibilities. Even though many are at home with their families and have more downtime and quality time than they’re used to they may still feel discontented and uneasy.
We have all felt that way and no one knows the outcome, but I have learned to give control to God more than ever during this time, for the simple fact that it is out of my control. The Lord says, cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you, 1 Peter 5:7.
The situation at hand may be a surprise to us, but it is not a surprise to the Lord. Thank God that He is still in control and in His timing it will come to an end and His will will be accomplished. Some people think God caused all of this and it is a sticky conversation, but I am here to tell you that He knows all and will sometimes allow things to happen, but he doesn’t necessarily cause things to happen. He can, however, stop any situation He wants to if and when it accomplishes His will.
You see this world is bigger than us and sometimes things happen that are terrible and we can’t understand why ‘God would allow these evil things to happen,’ but you forget we were created in His image at the creation of the world and He loves us. We chose to be disobedient, causing the world the be in sin. Since that time we have had many chances and was even sent a savior by God almighty, to make us righteous again to be in fellowship with Him. Sin separates us from God, but the blood of Jesus put us back in communion with Him. The sooner we understand our true purpose and the nature of God’s amazing grace and love for us, the sooner we can be in fellowship with Him again and understand His purpose for our lives. When we understand our purpose, there is such peace it doesn’t matter what’s going on around us, inside we will continue to have his supernatural peace. Does that mean we won’t be stressed or feel grief, no, it means instead of going through it alone, we can lean on Him during difficult knowing with confidence He will help us to endure life’s challenges.
Jesus has come to be our peace and our hope. When we rely on Him, he gives us that peace that transcends understanding. He is our constant hope in our time of trouble. If you need prayer or would like to find out more about about how to walk with Jesus in this crisis and in life please email or message me. I am here for you and I will pray with you. Keep calm and carry on. Blessings to you and your family during this time.
We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, 20where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek, Hebrews 6:19-20.