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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Anyone like salad recipes???

These are recipes I found while surfing around the net. Do you have any you would like to share? I want to collect different salad recipes to get more veggies and fruits into my families diet.
Rae's Tostada Salad
(For a family of 6 - smile - downsize as you wish)
2 heads greenleaf lettuce (chopped small)
1 or 2 peppers (you choose color - I liked red) cut in strips
3 cups frozen corn (thawed by pouring boiling water over and then let cool)
Toss with 1/2 bag tortilla chips
Chopped celery - opt.
Grilled chicken cut in strips - opt (but very good!)
(You could even add in grated mozza cheese or parmesan if cost and calories wasn't a problem....)
Pour Roasted Red Pepper Salad Dressing (1/4 to 1/2 cup) over and toss well. Very, very nice. Unique flavor and presentation.
Here is another salad I want to try soon. A friend is raving about it.Spinach, walnuts and sliced pears, toppedwith chicken breast and gouda cheese. The dressing was balsamic vinaigrette.
I love salads. I usually like to make several at the beginning of the week to put out for meals. Then, in the summer if I just cook hamburgers or something plain, the salads dress up every meal.
One I make often is just tossed lettuce, green onion, almonds, sunflower seeds and canned mandarin oranges, drained. The dressing is 1/2 oil, 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/2 sugar, 3 tbsp. poppy seeds.
I also often make bean salad with green and yellow beans (I usually use canned), garbanzo beans, kidney beans, onion and parsley. The dressing is 1/2 cup oil, 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp dry mustard, 1/2 tsp basil, 1 tsp salt.
Wow, this website -- -- is a really informative and thought provoking site. I can see that I will be spending a bit of time looking things over here.
Question: "Is a home church a true Biblical church?"

Answer: Churches in the New Testament era were indeed small assemblies that met in homes. So, the practice is certainly biblically allowable. There also seem to be some good reasons to have house churches as opposed to large gatherings: greater intimacy, stronger relationships, more comfortable worship, single mindedness, etc. The fact that large churches usually have their own home groups speaks to this fact. Several considerations should be made, however, concerning the reason for doing so.

First, the fact that first century Christians did something does not establish it as a pattern for all generations to follow (unless there is also a clear command to do so elsewhere). Simply because Scripture records an event or practice that does not, of itself, establish a command (nor, in some cases, even approval!). So, for example, the fact that early Christians often sold all they owned and shared the profits among other believers does not mean that we must do so today (although it certainly would be acceptable). So we should not think that home churches are any more "biblical" in this sense.

Second, there was a perfectly practical reason for meeting in homes. Where else would they meet? There were no church buildings, YMCA's, grammar schools, or even movie theaters that could hold large groups. Further, even if there was room somewhere, in a time of persecution a public gathering of hundreds or thousands of people would simply not be safe. Thus, it might not have been by design that the early church met in small groups. It is even possible that they would have preferred large meetings (as Jews would have been accustomed to), but they simply could not pull it off. So we should also not think that home churches are any more "spiritual" than large churches either.

Third, home churches that are started in an effort to counter "the institutional church" are rather suspicious. While often listing the above reasons to appear more biblical, the real reason often seems to be displeasure with large church movements. While these complaints are often valid, it can lead to an egalitarian "us vs. them" mentality that should be avoided.

In addition to the above considerations regarding motive, one final caution concerns the issue of accountability. For Protestant churches the Bible alone is the final court of decision in matters of faith and practice. This is fine, but the fact is that few people have the time to gain the skills and knowledge to accurately handle the word of God (2 Tim. 3:14-16). In classical education theology was taught last - for it builds on many other disciplines that cannot be learned from the Bible alone. Therefore, some degree of higher education was usually sought before one becomes a teacher of the word (James 3:1). The popular view today, however, is that the Holy Spirit teaches believers directly through the Bible. This idea might lead people to believe that whatever the group teaches is from God and is therefore safe from error. But the Bible does not teach that this is the case, and it is clear that most believers disagree on at least some issues, and most simply end up "interpreting" the Bible according to their churches' teaching anyway.

The answer to the interpretation issue requires another article, but the problem it creates becomes more ominous when dealing with home churches. The New Testament is full of warnings against heresies coming from within the church. Since it was written in the first century, these would actually be warnings regarding house churches. While this problem is certainly not limited to house churches, there is clearly no guarantee of protection from false teaching simply because the church changes its meeting format. Further, because home churches function as independent small groups, they need have no accountability to anyone but themselves. This makes it much more difficult to judge their teachings (in fact, the Jehovah's Witnesses cult began in exactly this manner).

In conclusion, there is nothing unbiblical about Christians gathering together regularly in houses, or large buildings, or any other appropriate venue. The Bible does not, in fact, give any guidelines as to the proper gathering size or location. What it does do is explain what is to take place at those meetings (Heb. 10; Col. 3; etc.). So long as biblical teachings (orthodoxy) and practices (orthopraxy) are undertaken by those in assembly, it really does not matter what meeting format one chooses.Recommended Resource: The Church: Why Bother? by Philip Yancey.


Question: "What is the purpose of the church?"

Answer: Acts 2:42 could be considered a purpose statement for the church, “They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” So, according to this Scripture, the purposes / activities of the church should be: (1) teaching Biblical doctrine, (2) providing a place of fellowship for believers, (3) observing the Lord’s supper, and (4) praying.
The church is to teach Biblical doctrine so we can be grounded in our faith. Ephesians 4:14 tells us, “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.” The church is to be a place of fellowship, where Christians can be devoted to one another and honor one another (Romans 12:10), instruct one another (Romans 15:14), be kind and compassionate to one another (Ephesians 4:32), encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11), and most importantly love one another (1 John 3:11).
The church is to be a place where believers can observe the Lord’s supper, remembering Christ’s death and shed blood on our behalf (1 Corinthians 11:23-26). The concept of “breaking bread” (Acts 2:42) also carries the idea of having meals together. This is another example of the church promoting fellowship. The final purpose of the church according to Acts 2:42 is prayer. The church is to be a place that promotes prayer, teaches prayer, and practices prayer. Philippians 4:6-7 encourages us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Another “commission” given to the church is proclaiming the Gospel of salvation through Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8). The church is called to be faithful in sharing the Gospel through word and deed. The church is to be a “lighthouse” in the community – pointing people towards our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The church is to both promote the Gospel and prepare its members to proclaim the Gospel (1 Peter 3:15).
Some final purposes of the church are given in James 1:27, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” The church is to be about the business of ministering to those who are in need. This includes not only sharing the Gospel, but also providing for physical needs (food, clothing, shelter) as necessary and appropriate. The church is also to equip believers in Christ with the tools they need to overcome sin and remain free from the pollution of the world. This is done by the principles given above – Biblical teaching and Christian fellowship.
So, with all that said, what is the purpose of the church? I like the illustration in 1 Corinthians 12:12-27. The church is God’s “body” – we are His hands, mouth, and feet in this world. We are to be doing the things that Jesus Christ would do if He were here physically on the earth. The church is to be “Christian” – “Christ-like” and Christ-following.
Recommended Resource: The Church: Why Bother? by Philip Yancey.

QUESTION: What is the purpose of the modern day "organized" church? When did they begin, why did they begin? Should we continue with them?

I have been continuing to read about simple church/home church and I have to tell you it sounds really appealing. I love the simplicity of it. I love the relationship building it allows. I love the way it feels more natural to what I percieve God wants from his children here on earth.

I guess belonging to a "organized" church allows for accountability to what is being taught. Otherwise we might have some cultish type movements because we fallen and sinful humans are really good at wrecking things. As I mentioned before anything we do here on earth is just a imperfect means of trying to accomplish God's work and we will never get it perfect. So maybe with that thought we should/I should just keep doing what I am doing, attending my local church and doing what I can within its "spiritual" walls.

Sometimes I really wish that God would have laid it all out in black and white so that there wouldn't be so many areas for His people to mess things up, so that we could be all be united as one for God. I struggled for many years when I was a teen and in my 20's that there couldn't be all these churches (denominations), that only ONE of them could be right. But how does a person find the RIGHT one. An impossible task I tell you! But as I have become older and hopefully wiser, I do realize that having these many different denominations adds flavor to the christian world. How boring would it be if we were all the same. So I gave up on trying to find the perfect/right church and settled where I am now. Actually I really felt called to be where I am now. We attend a Lutheran church in our small town. Please be aware that I have always said I ATTEND a Lutheran church but I do not consider myself a Lutheran. I am a Christian and I feel that I could attend a great variety of denominations.

I had a great spiritual 'awakening' back in 1999 and spent much time studying God's ways. It is fun to go back and read my journals from back then. But sometime after that I fell asleep in my spiritual life, just happy with the status quo and happily living in my rut. This past year though I have been woken up once again and it is great. I feel restless in my spiritual life and my walk with God, which would be why I am looking at simple churches and questioning my own church. I am a person who likes change and likes to question they way things are. I am interested to see where God will lead in the next little while.

Well I am off to do more research and web surfing. Be back soon, hopefully.


"Wherever God has put you, that is your vocation. It is not what we do but how much love we put into it." ~Mother Teresa~

Friday, May 18, 2007

This came to my inbox today and I had to share...

It was a busy morning, approximately 8:30 a. M., when an elderly gentleman in his 80's, arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He stated that he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9:00 am.I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would to able to see him. I saw him looking at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound.On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound. While taking care of his wound, we began to engage in conversation.I asked him if he had another doctor's appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry. The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife.I then inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer's Disease. As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not recognized him in five years now. I was surprised, and asked him, "And you still go every morning, even though she doesn't know who you are?"He smiled as he patted my hand and said, "She doesn't know me, but I still know who she is."I had to hold back tears as he left, I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought, "That is the kind of love I want in my life.

"True love is neither physical, nor romantic. True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be."

With all the jokes and fun that are in e-mails, sometimes there are some that come along that have an important message, and this is one of those kind.Oh, by the way, peace is seeing a sunset and knowing who to thank.The happiest people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything they have. (Amen to that!)Please share this with someone you care about

Blogs and Websites that I have been visiting

Here are some blogs and websites that I have been reading the last few days or so. A missionary in Ecuador, planting churches. I am really enjoying reading about his work there and learning a lot. I am in the process of reading all his entries in order. This blog is written by the wife of the above missionary. I found this blog from the first one through the comments section. I just found it today and I am reading about his church planting journey in the States.

These are some sites I was surfing yesterday while I was researching HOUSE CHURCHES.

A new day, A new blog

Good day,

This will the second blog in my world. I have one for homeschooling but I wanted a seperate one to write out my thoughts on various matters. Right now all my thoughts are whirling around about churches, traditional churches, house churches, etc. What should a church look like, act like, etc.

These are just a couple of notes I have written down from today's wandering through blog surfing and reading.

~ Modern day churches and denominations are a human methodology - an imperfect means to do what God has called us to do.

~ Are we making disciples?

~ BAPTISM is an initial act of worship that identifies one as a Christ follower. It is the first step of obedience and the beginning point of a new believers dicipleship.

Just notes for now. Random thoughts.