Heart Reflections Live

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Wow! I Actually Baked More than 2 Things this Week!

Wow! I actually surprised myself. I really did bake more than 2 things this week. Usually I'll bake a nice cake or something similar on a Friday, as Friday night we host a Bible study at our home, & other than that I'll usually do a batch of cookies or muffins as a treat for Talitha's lunchbox or for us at home. That's the norm for me.

This week I baked a Banana Cake Monday (We had some rather black bananas!), ANZAC biscuits Tuesday, a Lemon Merengue Pie on Friday, & I'm about to finish a 2nd smaller one this afternoon- and do you know what? It didn't really feel like that much hard work at all!!

Does this mean I'm starting to turn into a real-life 1950's housewife?!? Or am I simply finding more pleasure in serving my family & others who happen to Grace our table, and do it cheerfully unto the Lord, as my meagre skills improve? I Know I'm no June Cleaver, but I hope I'm a better Keeper-at -Home , than when I walked down the aisle nearly 7 years ago. At least I've progressed from being a can-opener cook to being able to make quite a few things from scratch, just like my Grandmother did, with the added bonus of electricity! I don't think I'd like to try it on a wood-stove though- hubby would soon tire of burnt offerings all the time!

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 2:00 pm 0 comments

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Remembering our ANZACs

Tomorrow is ANZAC day here in Australia, when we remember the courage & self-sacrifice of all those who fought for Australia in all Wars. Sadly, each year, there are fewer & fewer original diggers left, as they go on to receive their reward. Many of the younger generation have never lived through a War (as such), so much more the reason, for the older folk to teach the younger. Just as important, I believe, are the stories of the women, who kept the home-fires burning...
For my overseas blogfriends, here is a recipe for Aussie ANZAC Biscuits. In WW1, the Mum's of the "Boys"-yes , many were literally boys- in the trenches, would bake & send these biscuits in tins to their sons & they would stay nice & crisp.
1 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup of coconut
1 cup plain flour
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons of water
1 1/2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
6 tablespoons of butter
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1. Sift flour into a bowl
2. Add rolled oats, sugar & coconut. Mix well
3. Combine butter, golden syrup & water in a saucepan
4. Heat until butter melts
5. Add soda, allow to foam & pour immediately into dry ingredients
6.Spoon heaped teaspoonfuls onto greased oven trays. Allow room for spreading.
7. Bake in a slow oven for 20 minutes
8. Loosen & allow to cool on trays. Enjoy!
If anyone is planning a holiday Downunder & would like to find out more of the history of Australia's role in the wars, I highly recommend you set aside a day to explore the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, ACT. It will be a very moving experience for you & will help you to understand the Aussie concept of "Mateship". Also, if you've never seen it, the Aussie movie "Gallipoli" with Mel Gibson is a moving account of the first ANZACS.

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 9:06 am 0 comments

Saturday, April 21, 2007

A Christian Home

O give us homes built firm upon the Saviour,
Where Christ is Head, and Counsellor and Guide;
Where ev'ry child is taught His love and favour
And gives his heart to Christ, the crucified:
How sweet to know that tho his footsteps waver
His faithful Lord is walking by his side!

O give us homes with Godly Fathers, Mothers,
Who always place their hope and trust in Him;
Whose tender patience turmoil never bothers,
Whose calm and courage trouble cannot dim;
A home where each finds joy in serving others
And love still shines, tho days be dark and grim.
O give us homes where Christ is Lord and Master,
The Bible read, the precious hymns still sung;
Where prayer comes first in peace or in disaster,
And praise is natural speech to ev'ry tongue;
Where mountains move before a faith that's vaster,
And Christ sufficient is for old and young.

O Lord, Our God, our homes are Thine forever!
We trust to Thee their problems, toil, and care;
Their bonds of love no enemy can sever
If Thou art always Lord and Master there:
Be Thou the centre of our last endeavour
Be Thou thy Guest, our hearts and homes to share.

by Barbara B. Hart

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 8:36 am 0 comments

Friday, April 20, 2007

Mummy's Little Helper Girl

I' ve had a wonderful morning with my 2 beautiful girls. It was my turn this morning to do the school run-such a lovely drive, & I love that extra time spent with Talitha.
Once home, I went into busy gear, as Friday night we host a Bible Study at our home, which we really enjoy preparing for. I baked a Lemon Cake, while Zara happily played gardening outside.
When she came in and got cleaned up, she was eager to work by my side & lend a hand where needed. Together we collected the mail for our neighbour, hung out a BIG load of washing & her favourite job- helping Mama wash/rinse dishes. I so enjoyed her company this morning. At 3 she's well on the way to being a great little "Keeper At Home in Training"!
What a blessing!

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 12:29 pm 2 comments

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

How Can a Church Body Bless its Local Community?

I've been pondering on this a lot lately, since my last post. Coming from a local pioneering family, I've often read about (I love History!) how communities were established, often with the Church first, & then how everyone worked together to build schools, hospitals & Halls etc.

Although more people were church-goers in those days, I think it's a fallacy to believe that communities were "More Christian back then." There has always been that rougher edge of society, even in the good old days. What I believe is missing as a whole these days, is Christian involvement & influence in the civic arena.

A lot of townsfolk, here at least, don't seem to hear a lot of churches "doing anything" in the community. Of course, there's the Salvation Army, the Soup Kitchen, & one of the bigger local churches made news the last couple of years for doing a makeover on a rather run-down State school in the area. I thought this last one was great, as it showed Christians donating time, money & talent to bless the local community. And it was noticed! Many government funded institutions are crying out for money & resources here in Australia, maybe there's a real idea here to lift the public profile of the Church, beyond a "Bless Me Club", which sadly is how many unbelievers see us.

One idea I've been thinking of lately, is concerning hospitals... As the wife of a man , who has a rare heart condition (see my Valentine's post for details), I've spent many a time waiting
around hospitals with young children, during some very anxious times & while experience has taught me to be prepared, I can tell you there is a severe lack of children's reading material in decent condition in all hospital waiting areas. Maybe the churches could combine for a new hospital book & toy drive- or state school library book drive- we could even use the opportunity to choose some good Christian material to bless the community with.

Maybe too, it's time we Christians rethought about joining some community based fundraising organizations, providing their agenda doesn't go against our beliefs, of course. This would create more opportunities for friendship evangelism, as well as giving back to our communities.

I often feel ashamed when I think that many of our forebears had 6 or more children, went faithfully to Church, fundraised with home-cooking for that plus a few other community ventures- is our society becoming more Me-Centred or what!

These are just some of the things I've been reflecting on lately. Of course none of these things are a substitute for preaching the pure gospel of Christ, living in the light & loving our neighbour-just a few more thoughts on old-fashioned living...

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 2:58 pm 0 comments

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Home-Centred Living

Do you ever tire of running from one activity to the next? Does John need to be dropped off at sports practice, just after Jane finishes her piano lessons? And, Oh! Didn't you promise to meet the girls for coffee at the shops? Do you ever feel like you live in the car, and home is merely a pit-stop?

There is a solution! Home-Centred Living! Is it boring? NO!! And we enjoy ourselves without the aid of Pay TV (Cable), or an X-Box!

Home-Centred Living is by simple definition, living so that home & Family are central. It's a lifestyle choice, an old-fashioned way to live, & I believe that some who read my blog will already be living this way. For us, it's a very God-centred way to live; as the family is in fact the first "form of Government" (for want of a better phrase) instituted by God. Families make up Churches and communites, so the better we get on with one another at home, the better equipped our family team will be to reach out to others,and build strong communities.

What Do WE do at home?

1 . We pray & eat together at the family meal table, most of the time & enjoy extending hospitality,

2.We enjoy the garden.Daddy is teaching the girls spiritual principles in the outdoors, & also instilling a love of God's Creation,

3.We read, & read & read! Family read-a-louds are overtaking the popularity of the TV. We are also always building our home library, searching 2nd-hand shops, garage sales etc for classic treasures. (Old is good!)

4. We have a cupboard full of board-games & jig-saw puzzles. I believe these will get used more & more as our children get older.

5.We collect wholesome DVD's & Videos eg. Anne of Green Gables, Pollyanna, Bambi etc-Anything consistant with Phil. 4:8. One of the girls' favourite things to do with me at the moment is to sit and watch old Shirley Temple clips on You Tube- better than Britney Spears any day.

6. We teach our children some of their heritage, as we have family photos going back 5 generations.

7. The children have a playroom of mainly 2nd hand toys & craft stuff, we've collected to stimulate their imaginations.

8.The children learn how a home runs, by being in it most of the time. They don't take things for granted.

9. Cooking with Mummy & licking the bowl. Old-fashioned pleasures reign supreme here!!

10. Instead of coffee with the girls, I prefer to extend hospitality at home. The peacefulness of home always wins out over a noisy shopping mall. It's cheaper too- imagine the fuel money you'll save by going out less.

2 ideas on developing your child's talents, without running all over the countryside:

a) In-house Lessons See if your local music teacher will teach in your own home.

b)School If you have children in school, they may be able to learn sport or music through school, with a lunch-time commitment, or maybe by getting there a little earlier or staying a little later-it all saves running around.

Don't forget to encourage your children to contribute their talents to family life & Christian Ministry & to do all things for the glory of God.

These are just some ideas to get you going- every family is different.Maybe staying home more will help you save for a special family outing.

I can't stress enough the importance of home. Memories of home stay with you for life. You take them with you when you leave, and they can influence for good or evil, the homes, families & communities of the next generation.

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 1:48 pm 0 comments

Monday, April 09, 2007

Not Quite What I Had in Mind!!

I was up early reading my Bible, Good Friday morning, when little Zara (aged 3), decided to join me. She'd been getting me to read her "The Legend of the Easter Egg" & "The Easter Story" nearly every day for about a week, so I thought I'd read her one of the Good Friday accounts from my King James, with a little commentary from Mum.

She was listening diligently, when I said with excitement, "What happened Zara after they laid Jesus in the tomb?"

Zara pondered for a moment and said, "He got an egg?"

Not quite the answer I was looking for!!

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 2:52 pm 0 comments

Thursday, April 05, 2007

God Loves You...

From Charles Haddon Spurgeon, The Prince of Preachers:
I beseech thee be reconciled to God, because in this there is proof that God is loving you. Thou thinkest God to be a God of wrath. Would He have given His own Son to be punished if He had hated thee? Sinner, if God had anything but thoughts of love towards thee, I ask, would He have given up His Son to hang upon the cross? Think not my God a tyrant; think Him not a wrathful God, destitute of mercy. His Son, torn from His bosum and given up to die, is the best proof of His love...
Throw yourself upon the mercy of God this Easter, He loves you and will not turn you away!

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 12:33 pm 1 comments

Reflecting on Good Friday

This was my late Pop's (Paternal Grandfather) favourite hymn- when I think of Christ crucified, I think it says it all...

When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss, and pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it Lord, that I should boast, Save in the death of Christ, my God:
All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood.

See, from His head, His hands, His feet, Sorrow and love flow mingled down:
Did e'er such love and sorrow meet, Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

Were the whole realm of nature mine, That were an offering far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.

by Isaac Watts, 1674-1748

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 12:16 pm 0 comments

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Keepers of the Springs

Keepers of the Springs is perhaps one of the most powerful & well-known sermons by Scottish preacher, Peter Marshall. He was the U.S. Senate Chaplain from 1946-1948, while President Harry Truman was in office.

This sermon is even more relevant today, with the breakdown of the family unit and rampant feminism gone mad.

Quote:"We need Keepers of the Springs who will realize that what is socially correct may not be morally right. Our country needs today women who will lead us back to an old-fashioned morality, to an old-fashioned decency, to an old-fashioned purity and sweetness for the sake of the next generation, if for no other reason."

Society truly needs more women who are "brave"enough to lay down their own wants and desires and to stay home and raise their own children. Sure, we may have less income coming in, but aren't our children's souls worth more than money? By wordly standards I can't technically afford to stay home with our children- God provides- but through Godly convictions, I can't afford not to.

Please take the time to read the whole sermon yourself http://www.christianhomekeeper.com/keeper.shtml

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posted by Father's Grace Ministries at 8:22 am 2 comments