November 27, 2014

About coleen hayden

Coleen Hayden – Director of Women's Ministry - Prayer Ministry Leader - Blog Contributor
Coleen and her husband Robert have been married for 19 years and currently live in the Capital District area of New York State. They have one beautiful daughter, Kassia, who is married to Matt, and 4 delightful grandchildren Elijah, Kaylie Joy, Levi, and Rebekah. She enjoys sewing, cooking, and playing the piano.

Here’s My Thankful Heart

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

My open hands receive blessings You pour out on me
Your tender care restores my soul
Your faithfulness endures, as mercy covers all my sin
Your perfect love has made me whole
Beyond the words I’m searching for
I long to give You something more

Here’s my thankful heart, thankful heart
Offered up in gratitude for all You’ve done for me
Here’s my thankful heart, thankful heart
Offered up in praise to You

I’m unworthy of the gift of Your unfailing love
But You embrace me as I am
You provide my needs, and raise a harvest from the seeds I sow in vain
I bless Your Name
Beyond the words I’m searching for
I long to give You so much more

From the raising of the sun
‘Til it’s going down
The name of the Lord be praised

Written by Gary Forsythe

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

We can offer up our thankful hearts to our ABBA Father at any time; while

  • taking a walk along a path outside
  • singing praises with our church family
  • raking leaves (or shoveling snow!)
  • shopping for our family’s groceries
  • sharing our Thanksgiving meal with those who don’t have close family
  • getting our tasks at work accomplished
  • driving home…and being held up by traffic
  • sitting in His presence during our ‘quiet time’

The vital point is THAT we DO give praise to Him out of the abundance of our thankful hearts!!!

Listening to this sweet song, this is my oh-so-very-favorite part:

Beyond the words I’m searching for I long to give You so much more….

How about you…do you ever find yourself exclaiming that same thought to God?  Oh, I do!  So often I am simply without adequate words to tell God all that is in my heart! (As if He does not already know!!!)  But I am encouraged that He wants us (you and me!) to come to Him with all that is in our little hearts…what a kind, compassionate, loving Father!

Hear my prayer, O Lord; let my cry come to You!
Psalm 102:1

Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out Your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us.  Selah
Psalm 62:8

…Unto You will I sing praises with the lyre, O Holy One of Israel.
My lips shall shout for joy when I sing praises to You,
And my inner being, which You have redeemed.
My tongue also shall talk of Your righteousness all the day long….
Psalms 71:22-24

A big key to heartfelt praise and thanksgiving is to recognize where we were before God saved us through His grace and love.  Truly we were in a desperate situation. You could not save yourself from God’s righteous judgment.  But God sent His Son, to save you—to save all mankind!—by His grace.  Because now you have experienced His great love and grace, you delight in Him and His great salvation and you can’t help but sing for joy!  May I encourage you, friends, to never hesitate…never hold back…never deny yourself the joy of singing praises to our Almighty God!

Sing for joy in the Lord, O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming to the upright.
Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre;
Sing praises to Him with a harp of ten strings.
Sing to Him a new song;
Play skillfully with a shout of joy.
For the word of the Lord is upright,
And all His work is done in faithfulness.
He loves righteousness and justice;
The earth is full of the lovingkindness of the Lord.
Psalms 33:1-5

While studying through Psalm 33, I read Matthew Henry’s Commentary.  Here is a portion of what he wrote, “What a pity it is that this earth, which is so full of God’s goodness <verse 5>, should be so empty of His praises, and that of the multitudes that live upon His bounty there are so few that live to His glory!”

I hope that will not be said of us. As God’s “righteous ones,” let’s be all about offering up our thankful hearts through our praise and songs of joy.  Our lives are the proof that He delivers our souls from death. Our response should be to praise Him with thankful hearts.

Remember that line of this song that I shared I just love so much—’Beyond the words I’m searching for I long to give You so much more’—perhaps the words of the psalmist in Psalm 138 can help to express them.  These are my prayer; maybe yours, too.

I give You thanks, O Lord, with all my heart;
I will sing Your praises before the gods.
I bow before Your holy Temple as I worship.
I praise Your name for Your unfailing love and faithfulness;
For Your promises are backed
by all the honor of Your name.
As soon as I pray, You answer me;
You encourage me by giving me strength.
Every king in all the earth will thank You, Lord,
for all of them will hear Your words.
Yes, they will sing about the Lord’s ways,
for the glory of the Lord is very great.
Though the Lord is great, He cares for the humble,
but He keeps His distance from the proud.
Though I am surrounded by troubles,
You will protect me from the anger of my enemies.
You reach out Your hand,
and the power of Your right hand saves me.
The Lord will work out His plans for my life—
for Your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
Don’t abandon me, for You made me.
Psalm 138 NLT

Pumpkin Pie with GF Nut Crust—and Spiced Whipped Cream

2014-11-23 21.57.44I think that the Thanksgiving meal is one where the most traditional fare is prepared, served, and enjoyed.  Whether they are the ubiquitous offerings…turkey (goes with saying, right?), gravy, cranberry sauce; or favorites that are traditional for your own family…there are just some dishes we expect to prepare and share.  One of these is Pumpkin Pie!

Ok, asking for a show of hands, please…how many of you are baking pumpkin pie(s) to serve to your loved ones at your Thanksgiving dinner?  Me, too!  Actually, have already made this one.  The recipe included below features a Gluten-Free crust (made with almond and hazelnut flours) filled with a very traditional Pumpkin Custard and served with Spiced Whipped Cream to top it all off.  If you are looking for something traditional but with an updated twist, this might just fit the bill!

Here’s a tip (oh, punny!) for decoratively adding the whipped cream topping:  place a large-sized cake decorating tip (I used a #2D) into a small zip-top disposable bag…snip off JUST a bit from one corner.  Push the tip firmly into the snipped corner and add a good amount of the Spiced Whipped Cream into the bag; zip closed being SURE the baggie is sealed.

2014-11-23 19.59.46

 

Carefully manipulate the whipped cream down towards the corner holding the tip…making sure the tip remains lodged in the opening.  Gently squeeze allowing the whipped cream to come out through the tip.  Decorate to your heart’s content!  Make designs…write ‘Thank You, God, for all Your blessings!’ on the pie top.  Have fun!

 

Pumpkin Pie in a GF Nut Crust
with Spiced Whipped Cream

2014-11-23 22.07.23

Nut Crust
ingredients:
1+1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup hazelnut flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1 egg
1+1/2 tablespoons ice cold butter

directions:

  • cut butter into small cubes; place in fridge ‘til ready to use
  • preheat oven to 350
  • place ingredients in food processor (in order listed)
  • immediately pulse ingredients ‘til they come together into a ball
  • dump gathered ingredients into a 9″ tart pan
  • press out from the center evenly spreading across the bottom of pan and up the sides
  • bake for 15 minutes ‘til just beginning to lightly brown around the edges (don’t be alarmed if center puffs up; just lightly tap pan onto counter…crust will settle)
  • allow to cool completely before adding pumpkin custard filling

Pumpkin Custard
ingredients:
1+3/4 cups pumpkin puree (15 oz. can)
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup half and half
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg (freshly ground if possible)
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon liquid stevia (I used vanilla stevia)*

directions:

  • Increase oven temp to 375
  • in a large bowl, whisk eggs and salt
  • add in liquids and pumpkin puree, continuing to whisk
  • add spices and sweetener whisking ‘til spices are fully blended in
  • pour into the cooled nut crust (it will fill the pan)
  • place filled pan on a baking sheet’
  • bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes
  • custard is done when center is set and slightly puffed
  • allow to cool before slicing
  • store any leftovers in the ‘fridge

Spiced Whipped Cream
ingredients:
1/2 cup heavy or whipping cream
2 teaspoons 10X powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon EACH ground cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger

directions:

  • in mixer bowl, at medium-high speed, beat cream ‘til peaks start to form
  • add sugar and spices into a fine sieve or sifter and dust over whipped cream
  • start mixer up again, pour in extract
  • continue to whip just ‘til stiff peaks form
  • (follow directions above if piping using decorative tip) otherwise, serve with Spiced Whipped Cream

 ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Be Joyful Always

seekingHimthanksgivinggraphic

Be joyful always
Pray continually
Give thanks in all circumstances
For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

be joyful always
pray continually
give thanks in all circumstances

for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus

Composed and performed by Seeds Family Worship

This Week…1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

seekingHimthanksgivinggraphic

Rejoice always
Pray without ceasing
In everything give thanks
For this is God’s Will for you in Christ Jesus
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

I have simply loved meditating on this passage this week…how about you?  These truly are simple actions to take…let alone that they are ‘God’s Will for you in Christ Jesus!’  And the perspectives shared by Ahmee, Ann, and Cynda have absolutely broadened the scope of my understanding…and my obedience to God’s Will. (Thank you, dear sisters!)

Cynda graciously shared the revelation that God gave to her in Rejoice, Pray, Give Thanks, Repeat.

” Prayer changes our perspective and helps us find joy.
Joy causes us to rejoice.
Rejoicing makes us thankful.
When we are thankful we offer up prayer and praise. ⇨
Praying reveals and restores our joy…and round and round we go!
It is cycle…a circle of behavior…that never ends.

~   ♥   ~

In Thanks Giving, Ann encouraged us with some strong, vital words…

“My dear sisters, anything that is God’s Will…I will do it! For it means I have no choice but to obey. Acts of disobedience will lead to destruction. And, in fact in this case, thanks giving is an act of love. Already it is His Will for us to do so.

Let us “…be doers of the Word, and not hearers only…” James 1:22 ESV

~   ♥   ~

Ahmee reminded us of the Truth regarding being thankful in Thankful to a Good God.
“…Thankful in all circumstances.  I think sometimes we get this mixed up with thankful for all circumstances.  This also corresponds with being content in all circumstances—not content for all circumstances.  We are going to go through some things in our lives that we should not be thankful for, but we can be thankful during the process.”

~   ♥   ~

Lord, we do give You thanks in all things, in all circumstances, for ALL that You have blessed us with!  We give voice to our deepest gratitude acknowledging Your provision and perfect supply for each need that we have.  You are such a good and gracious and kind and compassionate and loving Father!  We love You and adore You…and we praise and thank You!  In Jesus’ name, amen.  HalleluJAH!     

 

Giving Thanks In EVERYthing

seekingHimthanksgivinggraphic

Rejoice always
Pray without ceasing
In everything give thanks
For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

As our sisters have already reminded us this week—IN everything give thanks (not FOR everything)!

Y’know…there is a certain man whose dedication and commitment to God IN every situation and circumstance is recorded in the Old Testament.  I’ll give you a hint or two, ok?

  1. His friends tried to DISsuade him from giving thanks IN everything….
  2. His wife clearly told him the situation was so bad that he should just ‘curse God and die’….

Oh, I am SURE you recognize this man; yes?  Of course, it was righteous Job.  If ever there were someone who perceivably had nothing left for which to give thanks, it was Job.

Job was abundantly blessed by God: he had houses, and flocks, and herds of animals, and servants, and a great big family. One dreadful day, his 10 children were killed in a house collapse, his sheep, camels, oxen, and donkeys were stolen away, and all his servants (save the three who escaped and brought him the terrible news) were captured.  He could have complained to God bitterly. But he said,

Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.
Job 1:21

In all that Job went through, his attitude never wavered.  He knew that God is sovereign, that all that he had (or didn’t have) was in God’s hand.  And, like righteous Job, we too, should have this unwavering attitude of giving thanks to Almighty God IN all situations and circumstances.  Paul also reminded the 1st century Christians ( and us!) to do the same.

At all times and for everything giving thanks
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.
Ephesians 5:20

Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks through Him to God the Father.
Colossians 3:17

Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father,
Who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.
James 1:17

Truly, we should rejoice always  ♥  pray without ceasing  ♥  give thanks in everything!

Every day, throughout each day, let’s speak and sing out our gratitude and thankfulness to our heavenly Father!  May our prayer be as David’s…

To the end that my tongue and my heart
and everything glorious within me
may sing praise to You and not be silent.
O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever.
Psalm 30:12

 

Thank You

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Thank you for the things that I never thanked You for
You’ve given everything I need and still I asked for more
It’s not that I’m ungrateful, I’m just forgetful, Lord
So I thank You for the things that I’ve never thanked You for

There are so many blessings that You have given me
Things I take for granted everyday
The beauty of creation and the promise of my salvation
Lord, help me to remember when I pray

Now when my way grows weary and rest is hard to find
And sometimes I can’t see my way through
And when it seems that I am blinded that’s when I need to be reminded
That the strength I thought was mine…it came from You

  Written by Sonya Isaac and Shelton Feazell ~  Sung by The Isaacs

  * ~ ♥ ~ ✞ ~ ♥ ~ *

I must admit that I can sing the line ‘You’ve given everything I need…and still I asked for more’ right along with the Isaacs’ Family.  Oh, it’s not that I am not thankful—I am SO thankful!  Or that I don’t voice my thanks and praise to my heavenly Father.  I DO…and I am SURE you do, too!   The simple words of this bluegrass ballad speak the truth: we do forget to give God thanks and we do take for granted oh-so-very-many things that God has done for us.  But truly our mouths should be full of thanks and not petitions.

Here is one short passage FILLED with incredible blessings (I’ve counted more than ten!)  to praise and thank Him for.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

1 Peter 1: 3-7

And here’s another:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory.

Ephesians 1:3-12

As we sing along “thank You for the things that I’ve never thanked You for…” have we intentionally thanked God that we are ‘blessed…with every spiritual blessing…in Christ’?  Or purposefully thanked Him that we are ‘predestined according to His purpose…to the end that we…would be to the praise of His glory’?  Or wholeheartedly thanked Him for the truth that ‘He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world that we would be holy and blameless before Him’?

Our giving thanks to God should fill our days!

  • When we get up, we have much to be thankful for—breath, life, new day, new mercies…
  • As we go throughout the day, we have much to be thankful for—protection, guidance, forgiveness, peace, comfort…
  • As we lay our heads down at night, we have much to be thankful for—provision, joy, trials gotten through, loved ones…

May I encourage you to sing {with your whole heart} your praise and gratitude and thanks giving to God truly thanking Him for those things that you have never thanked Him for!  Perhaps some of those blessings listed in the two Scripture passages above will supply some words to your song.

In Everything Give Thanks

seekingHimthanksgivinggraphic

 Rejoice always
Pray without ceasing
In everything give thanks
For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

In everything give thanks, with all your heart give praise
For the Lord we serve will never let you down
In everything give thanks, with all your heart believe
That the Lord can take a circumstance
And turn it all around

When you want sunshine to brighten up your day
But you find the clouds rain on your parade
Don’t forget somewhere someone you may not know
Is thanking God for a rain to make the crops grow

When troubles trouble you and you think life’s not fair
When you need someone and there’s no one there
Remember all the times that you feel alone are the
Times He’ll use to make you strong

Charlotte Ritchie  ~ written by Jeff & Sheri Easter

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

 

Bless The Lord (10,000 Reasons)

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

The sun comes up, it’s a new day dawning
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes

Bless the Lord, O my soul, O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before, O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name

You’re rich in love, and You’re slow to anger
Your name is great, and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore

God, I’ll worship Your holy name
I’ll worship Your holy name

 Written by Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin ~ Performed by Yancy

  *   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.
Psalms 103:1 and 2

Now that is what I want to do!  How about you?  Of course…it comes so easily to the heart of one of God’s children! Oh…how we love to praise and declare His goodness!

I will [earnestly] recall the deeds of the Lord;
yes, I will [earnestly] remember the wonders of old.
I will meditate also upon all Your works and consider all Your [mighty] deeds.
Psalms 77:11 and 12

Haven’t we all had times when you have palpably experienced the goodness and faithfulness of God so intensely that you wanted to leap in the air and shout and say, “How could I ever doubt You, my God, after this?  How could I ever again despair of Your help?”  And we go along remembering His goodness and blessing Him.   …And then…some short time later…we falter.  We find ourselves doing just that—being discouraged, and doubting, forgetting our confidence in the goodness and greatness of God.  Why does this happen?  Perhaps because we so easily forget the evidences of God’s goodness which we ourselves have experienced; not to mention the vast number of records in Scriptures which tell us of God’s faithfulness and His goodness.

What are some of His ‘mighty deeds’…the ‘wonders of old’ spoken of in Psalm 77? Think about it; I am sure you won’t need to think but a moment to recall God’s awesome works!  Now, these are not quite 10,000 reasons…but here are a few that immediately came to mind—and these are all from the very first book in the Bible:

  • God spoke into existence His Creation (chapter 1:3-31)
  • God gave Noah His plan for saving a remnant of mankind, the animals and birds (chapters 13-21)
  • God protected mankind from making too much of themselves (chapter 11:3-9)
  • God promised (chapter 18:10-15) AND then made a way for a 100 year old man and a 90 year old woman to conceive a child (chapter 21:1-7)
  • God provided in an incredible way as Abraham obeyed to the uttermost (chapter 22:1-14)

That God is GREAT <in every way that greatness could possibly be!> should be obvious to everyone.  Paul reminds us,

Ever since the creation of the world, His invisible nature, namely,
His eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made.
So men are without excuse for, although they knew God,
they did not glorify Him as God or give Him thanks.
Romans 1:20 and 21

We ARE without excuse…if we are not continually voicing our gratitude and our thanks!  Our great God, the Great I AM, has done many and mighty works throughout time!  And His lovingkindness and goodness continue…His faithfulness to each of us is incredible!  We each have numerous stories to share praising God for His incredible blessings in our lives.  Every day in a variety of ways we should be expressing our thanks.

I will praise the name of God with a song.  I will magnify him with thanksgiving.
Psalm 69:30

Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God,
that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.
Hebrews 13:15

Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving and pay your vows to the Most High;
Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me.
He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me;
And to him who orders his way aright I shall show the salvation of God.
Psalms 50:14 and 15, 23

  *   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

This is my prayer…for you and me.  Let us bless the Lord with all that is within us!

O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.
My soul will make its boast in the Lord; the humble will hear it and rejoice.
O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.
Psalms 34:1-3

Forever (His Love Endures Forever)

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Give thanks to the Lord our God and King
His love endures forever
For He is good, He is above all things
His love endures forever
Sing praise, sing praise

With a mighty hand and outstretched arm
His love endures forever
For the life that’s been reborn
His love endures forever
Sing praise, sing praise

Forever God is faithful
Forever God is with us
Forever

From the rising to the setting sun
His love endures forever
By the grace of God we will carry on
His love endures forever
Sing praise, sing praise

Written by Chris Tomlin  ~  Performed by Robin Mark

  *   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

Don’t you just love to sing this praise anthem?!!?  The words just give our hearts such an awesome way to acknowledge God’s goodness and praise Him for His enduring love!

This praise-filled phrase—He is good; His love endures forever—is recorded in many places throughout the Old Testament.  One of the most outstanding records, in my opinion, is found in the 2nd Book of Chronicles, specifically chapters 5-7.

We see (in 2 Chronicles 5) King Solomon calling the elders of Israel, the leaders, the heads of the tribes (along with all the people of Israel) to accompany the Ark of the Covenant to its long-awaited proper home in the Temple.  (It had been his father, David, to whom God gave the vision for the building of the Temple, which was never accomplished in David’s lifetime.)  The priests brought the Ark to its proper, anointed place in the Holy of Holies.  Surrounding the altar were the Levites and the priests ready to praise in unison with all their instruments and their voices.

The trumpeters and singers joined together to praise and thank the LORD with one voice.
They raised their voices, accompanied by trumpets, cymbals, and musical instruments,
in praise to the LORD: For He is good; His faithful love endures forever.
The temple, the LORD’s temple, was filled with a cloud.
And because of the cloud, the priests were not able to continue ministering,
for the glory of the LORD filled God’s temple.
Verses 13 and 14

The record of the dedication of the Temple continues (chapters 6 and 7) as Solomon prays and blesses the people.

As soon as Solomon finished his prayer, fire came down from heaven
and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices,
and the glory of the LORD filled the temple.
2 Chronicles 7:1

The peoples response?

When all the Israelites saw the fire coming down
and the glory of the LORD above the temple,
they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground,
and they worshiped and gave thanks to the LORD, saying,
He is good; His love endures forever.”
Verse 3

And throughout the continued sacrifices and the ceremony of dedicating the Temple, continual praise “His love endures forever” was offered to God by the priests and the people along with the sacrifices of animals.

And, as such, this <without the animal sacrifice!> should be our continual praise.  We are oh-so-very blessed!  The provision and supply that our great God brings to our lives deserves our continual exclamation, “He is good! His love endures forever!

Just as the psalmist communicates in every single verse of Psalm 136, perhaps our own conversation and communication about our great God—as well as our prayers— should always include this praise.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His (steadfast) love endures forever.
Verse 1

As we thank God for His goodness our hearts should overflow with words of gratitude and praise confessing that truly, “His love endures forever!” … Perhaps this year during your celebration of Thanksgiving with your friends and loved ones, you could share a time of praise and worship, and use these same words that David, and Solomon, and the Israelites used to declare God’s goodness.  Because no matter what the age, the situation, the circumstance, the season, the time, the day, or the hour… ‘He is good! His love endures forever!

Here are a few different ways this glorious praise is written in different translations:

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good…

His love endures forever (NIV)
His faithful love endures forever (NLT)
His lovingkindness is everlasting (NASB)
His mercy endureth for ever (KJV)
His steadfast love endures forever (ESV)
His love is eternal (HCSB)
His loyal love endures (NET)
His mercy and lovingkindness are everlasting (AMP)

Spiced Pumpkin Smoothie

2014-11-16 22.22.56 HDR

‘Tis the season for all things PUMPKIN!  Pumpkin pie, pumpkin chili, pumpkin muffins, beef stew IN a pumpkin, pumpkin in your oatmeal, pumpkin ice cream…what are some of your favorites?  Over the weekend, Robert and I took a roadtrip down to celebrate my brother’s birthday and treated ourselves to some nice large coffees to go along.  Mine was a pumpkin spice latte…deeeeee-licious!  And it got me thinking about other pumpkin-y&spicy beverages. Why not pumpkin&spicy smoothies!  So when we got back home that is exactly what I made!  The quantities below made up two big mugs-full…and about 8 ounces for me tomorrow morning  ;-)   (I think I am going to make these again as a healthy, hearty breakfast prior to Thanksgiving Dinner.)

This is SO in line with our healthy but oh-so-yummy POV!  Here’s a link to some of the healthy benefits and nutrition facts about pumpkin.  This smoothie is loaded with protein, fiber, low in fat, and full of flavor.  Of course, you can substitute any milk or milk alternative and your choice of yogurt.

2014-11-16 22.19.30
Also, I added a couple of smashed up graham crackers into the blender, too (and tossed a few crumbs onto the top of Robert’s smoothie.)  Hope you enjoy it, too!

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

ingredients:
1 cup canned pumpkin puree, FROZEN
1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
2 cups almond milk
1 cup ice
1 really ripe banana (frozen, too)
2-3 tablespoons pure maple syrup (or honey or agave)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (freshly grated is superb!)
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves (optional)
1 graham cracker (smashed up in a baggie) optional!

directions:

  • place all ingredients into your blender container
  • blend on high ‘til ice is thoroughly pulverized (this will depend on the strength of your blender)
  • pour into big mugs, add straw (or not!)

♥    ♥    ♥    ♥    ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen