Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Candy

Grannie and I spent a little time yesterday afternoon making some yummy treats. The ladies in our family traditionally spend a Saturday in December cooking up lots of sweets, but with Mamma at my sister's and my aunt frantically shopping, there were only two of us to labor and toil.

We had a great time making Potato Candy, vanilla fudge, and a double decker pan of maple and vanilla fudge. With the Christmas chewies I made earlier in the week, I think we may be set...although I'd love to have a little time to make a batch of my aunt's famous gingersnaps.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Potato Candy

There are lots of variations of this recipe out there, but this is the one my family has traditionally made every Christmas.

1/2 cup cooked potato
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 lb. confectioners sugar
Peanut butter or soynut butter

Mash potato well and mix with salt, vanilla, and confectioners sugar. You should have a very thick dough to roll out. Sprinkle confectioners sugar on rolling pin and surface and roll out to about 1/4" thickness. Spread peanut or soynut butter on top and roll up into a log. Refrigerate until well chilled and cut into slices. Yum!

The good news is that this recipe is gluten-free, so I can eat it. The bad news is that this recipe is gluten-free, so I can eat it.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Faithful Prayer

Yesterday I spoke with a lady who recently lost her beautiful daughter in a tragic accident. I listened as she talked about how her greatest fear is that people will cease to pray for her family. She compared it to the account of Moses and the Israelites as they encountered the Amalekites in Exodus 17. As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning. When he grew tired, Aaron and Hur held up his arms until the Israelites were finally victorious. This dear woman considers the prayers of friends, acquaintances, and even strangers to be Aaron and Hur, holding up her dear family in this difficult time.

It is regrettably true that we often stop praying. There are many possible reasons for this tendency, but the most common one may simply be laziness. We grow tired of things so easily, and we lack the determination that is required to see things to completion. My daughter shared with me a phrase that she and a friend have adopted: "Stick it out!" When they get tired, discouraged, or frustrated, they encourage one another this way. Don't we need to just "stick it out" in our prayers as well? Scripture instructs us to do just that.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12

God, on the other hand, is well aware of our weaknesses. We can all be encouraged that His faithfulness is never in question.

The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. Deuteronomy 33:27

Those arms never tire. Their strength is unmatched. We can depend on them.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Call Me

I've been meditating on Jeremiah 33:3 for a couple of days.

Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.


I've heard this verse called, "God's phone number". It's a pretty neat description of such an incredible command. What great and mighty things does God want to tell me? Is He just waiting for me to ask? What things have I missed because I wasn't listening?

I am too often guilty of spending my prayer time talking to God, specifically listing the things I want Him to do for me or those I love. I know God speaks to me through His Word, but He also speaks to me in a still, small voice. [I love the passage in 1 Kings 19 where God reveals Himself to Elijah. Oh, don't we want Him to be the earthquake!] The problem is that I have to slow down and quiet myself to be able to hear His voice.

A very helpful exercise that I have realized I need to consciously reinstate in my relationship with God is taking a few minutes every morning to be still and quiet before the Lord. In the past, I have spent 5 or 10 minutes at the end of my prayer time in quiet reflection waiting to hear from Him. I think now I am going to try doing that at the beginning. I have a feeling my prayers may be directed a little differently as a result.

Heavenly Father, please keep my thoughts heavenward.