In My Kitchen

Food, Faith and all things Family


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The Lord Is Good

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“The Lord is good, tell it wherever you go.

The Lord is good, tell it that others may know.

Tell of His goodness and tell of His love;

Tell of His mercy from heaven above.

The Lord is good, tell it wherever you go.”

We’ve had a couple hard weeks, but these words have played often in my heart over the last couple days.  It’s fairly common for Sunday’s songs to echo throughout my week.  These words, though, I haven’t heard in ages!  I think they are from a Good News Backyard Bible Club I would have participated in long ago.

Goodness is one of God’s essential qualities and He does good things for me.  Placing these words in my heart is one of them.  They’re not magic.  They haven’t made the trial disappear. They haven’t diminished the challenges.  They have helped me shift my focus away from the struggles and onto the good things that are part of every day. For truly, even in the hard days the goodness of the Lord can be found.

I haven’t kept my eyes on the Lord’s goodness every minute.  Yet even when I am faithless, God remains faithful (2 Timothy 2:13).

The following lines are from Cecil Frances Alexander’s poem  All Things Bright and Beautiful.  The board  book All Creatures Great and Small illustrated by Naoko Stoop contains this poem.  It was a good one for us to have from the library this week.

“The tall trees in the greenwood, The meadows where we play,

The rushes by the water, We gather every day;

He gave us eyes to see them, And lips that we might tell,

How great is God almighty, Who has made all things well.”

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“I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”  Psalm 27:13

Are you dwelling on your struggles or letting God redirect your focus onto His goodness?

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Sweet Speech – Pursuing Pleasant Words

image from photobucket - creative commons license

image: photobucket – creative commons

“Sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness.”  Proverbs 16:21

My speech is not always sweet.  My tongue is hard to tame and prone to spew poison (James 3:8).  As a mom I have taught my kids to avoid poison.  I don’t want them to flee for their lives when I begin to speak.  I want them to look forward to my words.  I want them to hear me when I instruct them.  This will only happen when my speech is sweet.

“The heart of the wise teaches [her] mouth and adds persuasiveness to [her] lips.”  Proverbs 16:23

Since I want to bless my children’s spirits, encourage their hearts and strengthen their souls, I must keep my tongue under constant training and diligently pursue pleasant words.

“Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”  Proverbs 16:24

Honey is sweet to the tongue.  One taste creates a desire for more.  Honey has also been shown to have medicinal properties.  It can discourage infection and promote healing.  Pleasant words have similar effects.  They create a desire for more.  They contribute to strengthening and healing.

My kids love it when I serve them honey on bread.  They look forward to it eagerly and anticipate the next opportunity with excitement.  I want my words to have the same affect on them.

To “add persuasiveness to my lips” I must carefully consider the words I choose, the tone I use and the facial expression I display when I open my mouth.  Only by the grace of God and the strength of His Spirit can I train my tongue in the ways of sweet speech.

Are those around you strengthened and encouraged by the sweetness of your speech?


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Thoughts for a Thursday – 10 Minutes for Tea

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“My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him.”  Psalm 62:5

The world is full of chaos and confusion.  Our house is full of noise and commotion.  My head has an endless litany of conversation swirling about.  Yet God calls us to be still . . . not just to be still, but to be still and remember that He is God (Psalm 46:10).

For the last couple weeks I’ve been trying to take 10 minutes somewhere in the middle of my day to do that.  To remember that God reigns over the chaos and confusion of the world.   That God reigns in the noise and commotion of our house.  I also want God to reign over the conversation in my head.  Taking 10 minutes to wrap my hands around a warm cup of tea, close my eyes and take a few deep breaths helps orient my mind, my heart, my soul back toward God.

I reflect on God’s incomparable character and remember that He alone is worthy of highest praise.  I look for His blessings and am thankful that He cares for me.  I consider that only through His abundant grace and unlimited wisdom will I successfully navigate the rest of my day .  My heart returns to hoping in God.

So, find a quiet spot to sit.  Take ten minutes to close your eyes to the mess around you.  Reflect on the character of God, Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).  Remember that “tho’ the wrong seems oft so strong” in our world, maybe in your home, “God is the ruler yet.”

“Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.  For our heart rejoices in Him, because we trust in His holy name.  Let Thy lovingkindness, O Lord, be upon us, according as we have hoped in Thee.”  Psalm 33:20-21