Friday, July 29, 2011

Check this out:

desiringGod is a wonderful blog that many of the women in our church follow.  This post in particular was one that was brought to my attention and suggested that I share with you all.  When you have the time to read and reflect, check it out by clicking here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Recipe of the Week - Home Brewed Iced Coffee

1 cup ground coffee-----I like to grind my own beans
1 qt. cold water------right out of the faucet  (not hot)
Large coffee filters

You can use a quart jar, pitcher or anything with a wide mouth.
Pour water over coffee grounds making sure all are wet.  
Cover and let sit on counter overnight 12-15 hours. 

Put strainer over a large bowl. 
Place coffee filter inside strainer.  
Slowly pour the coffee into the filter. (it usually takes 2 to 3 filters)

When you finish straining the coffee, you should have about 1.5 pints of concentrate. 

Refrigerate (covered) to store. 

I like strong coffee so I use 1/4 cup coffee concentrate------fill rest of cup with milk.  Sweeten to taste. I pour this over crushed ice.
You can also add a scoop of ice cream instead of the ice.  Top with whipping cream.

To get a detailed look at this with pictures of every step, go to 

This goes a long way because you only use a small amount of coffee each time.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Back to School - Toni Manley

School…what thoughts or feelings does the word bring to your mind?  Excitement, joy, “new”, fear, dread, schedules…

Being a teacher, I have the same wonders as students and parents (I am an“alum” of the parent group!).  I experience all of the above words in my heart just as my families that God gives me each year!  As we all begin to prepare our hearts for another school year, I would love to pass on some lessons God has taught me and continues to review for me in my heart!
Trust God’s heart about your child.  I know when our children are born we say we give them to God and ask Him to mold them into His likeness.  I have learned that God is faithful and creative in His ways to accomplish His plan/work in our children.  Sometimes, it will mean a more difficult work for the parent than the child because parents are the ones who may be the responder, the model/example the child learns from about authority figures and how to walk well through hard and hurtful circumstances.  My response as a parent to my child’s teachers, coaches, leaders will be “caught” in my child’s heart and begin a pattern that will develop a lifelong methodology of handling joy and adversity in circumstances and toward those in authority over him/her.  Am I modeling: praying for those in authority?  Encouraging? Showing respect? Having a teachable and listening heart?   Each year when parents leave their child with a new teacher and new classmates, a new test of faith in God’s heart is given.  To be able to say, “God, You love this child more than I do. You know his/her tomorrows; therefore, I submit to Your heart that this gift (child-not idol) is under Your watchful eye and I will trust You and obey Your word as I partner with a “new” place for my child.”

2.     Guard your heart and tongue!  School is not a perfect place! (just as our homes are not)  Teachers, coaches, and students are not perfect! (neither are we as parents)  Yay, now that we have gotten the truth on the table, maybe we can relax!!! There will be mistakes on both parts – parents and teachers.  I have learned and know God has a plan to deal with mistakes.  I must run to Him FIRST, go in a spirit of humility to the one who has been “imperfect” with me, and present my heart.  Several thoughts:  by going to God FIRST, the Holy Spirit can help me see if there is anything I need to deal with in my heart; my heart is washed with the Word and the Holy Spirit is in control so I am in a place of humility – not accusing, attacking, or assuming in my concerns;  I am careful in my words (heart revealers) about the person or setting that is “imperfect” (class, teacher, coach, team).

3.     Recognize that your child’s perspective-his/her way of seeing the teacher, coach, and classmate is that of a child-ages 5-18!  From kindergarten through high school, our children can be more focused on themselves and not have the ability to see a bigger picture or lesson God may be trying to teach them for their tomorrows.  Basically, life is pretty much done in groups (marriage, family, job, church, traffic…).  Use the high moments of applause to teach gratitude and quick release of praise to God for moments of honor.  Use difficult, unfair, overlooked moments as times to teach how to love difficult people, forgive, and have faith in God’s heart. 

I do want anyone reading this dissertation to parents to know, this is as much a call to me the teacher to act on as it is to you!  Knowing I am accountable to God for the attitudes, words, and ways I deal with the families He gives me is extremely humbling. My “heart” need as a teacher is to be under the authority of God, be obedient to the principles of scripture in all my work, and partner with parents for whatever time God gives us together. 

Let’s commit to pray for each other in the chairs God has each of us – parent, student, teacher, or coach.

Let’s commit to speak correctly about each other.

Let’s commit to lead our children through examples of obedience to God’s word by the way we live our lives.

Have a great school year wherever God has you!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Missionary Update - Epps Family in Brazil

Here's an update from Tiffany Epps, whose family is serving as missionaries in Brazil:

Just thought I would share our newsletter with you ladies in case you don't receive it through our prayer group.

Thank you for your prayers over these past few weeks. We are well and the children doing much better. We have seen improvement in Evan and Ella’s breathing and the lump on Evans chest has improved. They still struggle a little I think just from the allergies so please pray that we can keep it under control. We are so excited to share that the graduation went great and the teams are on their way to their communities. Aaron has gone ahead of them to help receive them when they arrive and to help make sure that the right connections are made. The new teams will be going to communities where there is no evangelical prescence (church and perhaps no believers) and they first must be welcomed by the people and then look for a person of peace and a place to stay.

Please pray for
Aaron as he travels and tries to help the teams to make initial contacts. Please pray for his and each teams health and safety.
Jennifer as she welcomes the two newest team members (Katia and Nhyara) into the community where she serves. They now have a group of about 35 people meeting together for worship in Marajai!
Jackson and Rafael as they continue to train and guide the church that has been planted in Sao Sabasteao da Liberdade.
Giovani and Ronivaldo to be welcomed and find a person of peace in Sao Sabasteao do Jacare.
Greg and Jailson to be welcomed and find a person of peace in Santo Antonio do Ica.
Tricia as she continues learning Portuguese and prepares for the next training in October.
Mary Evelyn as she serves our family and has other ministry opportunities during this month.
Our family while Aaron is away and a new opportunity to get involved in ministry at a local orphanage. Pray for a little girl named Brenda, she needs our prayers.

Wow, thank you for your prayers. The Lord is doing so many wonderful things. We will try to keep a current newsletter for you to know how to pray and praise the Lord with us for the way He is answering prayers! Thank you to those of you who have given so that our family can replace moldy matresses. We are still a work in progress when it comes to the mold. We have thrown away so many things and realizing that even some of those things we tried to salvage and clean really shouldn’t be kept. So each day is a step in the right direction. Evan is doing well with his speech and even trying so many Portuguese words. We have flash cards and activities that he is doing and we continue to see progress, Praise the Lord!

Please share these requests with your Sunday School classes and those who can join us in prayer.

In Christ,
Tiffany, Aaron, Family and RACERS