Saturday, February 7, 2015

Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes - Gluten Free, Sugar Free and Dairy Free

Do you like lemon poppyseed muffins? Do you like pancakes? Does eating gluten, sugar and dairy make you feel crummy? Well then, these pancakes are for you! They are scrumpdidiliumcious and perfect for a Saturday morning brunch!


-1/2 cup almond flour
-1/2 cup coconut flour
-3 tblsp powder stevia
-1 tblsp baking powder
-1 tsp salt
-1 tbsp poppyseeds
-4 eggs
-1 1/4 cups almond milk
-2 tbsp melted coconut oil
-1 tsp vanilla
-1 tbsp lemon extract (I was out of lemon juice)
-1/2 tbsp lemon zest (I used dry lemon peel)

Even  people without
dietary limitations like them!
A lot. He had 7.
Combine the dry ingredients of almond flour, coconut flour, stevia, baking powder, salt and poppy seeds in a bowl. Add eggs, almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla, lemon extract and zest. I let the batter rest for about ten minutes before cooking the pancakes on the skillet. Make sure that your pan is oiled well and give yourself a bit of time to cook these. Careful flipping these guys! Recipe yields approximately 12 pancakes 4 inches in diameter. Serve them up with ghee butter or coconut oil and dust with stevia.

Friday, November 21, 2014


Devotional times are the blessed dumping grounds of the Most High...and occasionally He just straight up drops an acrostic in your lap for a book of the Bible. Jesus has been blowing my mind and causing joyful tears to flow these days. He's mostly been using Galatians to stir me up, and it's been awesome!

Here is what I shared as a staff team devotional earlier this week:

2 Corinthians 3:6 "He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant--not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life."

Philippians 3:1-3- 1 "Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you2 Watch out for those dogs, those men who do evil, those mutilators of the flesh. 3 For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh…”

G – GOSPEL – 1:1-24
àPaul’s Passion for the Person of the Gospel – JESUS – 3-4 -“Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, 4 who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, 5 to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
àPaul’s Passion for the purity of the Gospel,  6-7- “6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel-- 7 which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.”
àPaul’s Passion for the preaching of the Gospel, 23 -“They only heard the report: "The man who formerly persecuted us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy."

A – ACCEPTED as an apostle (Paul) - 2:1-10

L – LIFE IS NOT IN THE LAW – 2:11-21 – 16a, 19-21 “know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ…For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

A – ABRAHAM BELIEVED AND WAS BLESSED – 3:1-14 – 6-7 – “6 Consider Abraham: "He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness." 7 Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham.

T – THROUGH A PROMISE WE INHERIT – 3:15-25 – 18 – “For if the inheritance depends on the law, then it no longer depends on a promise; but God in his grace gave it to Abraham through a promise.”

I – IN CHRIST AND CHILDREN OF PROMISE – 3:26-4:31 – 6-7, 28 – “ 6 Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ""Abba", Father." 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir…28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.”

A – ABOLITION OF SLAVERY – 5:1-15 – 1, 11, “1 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery… 11 Brothers, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been abolished.” àIn the Greek “offense” literally means stumbling block.

N – NO LAW AGAINST THE SPIRIT – 5:16-26 – 16-18, 22-26 – “16 So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. 17 For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law…22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”
àThere is no law against the Spirit, but how prone I am to choosing and creating new laws rather than asking did I bear His fruit today in my life.
à26 – If I’m not living by the Spirit and keeping in step with Him, the fruit of my heart will be prideful conceit, and this will provoke and cause envy in my relationships with others. I may also feel provoked or be envious of others, while trying to build myself in the flesh.

S – SOW TO PLEASE THE SPIRIT – 6:1-18 – 8-9, 15 - “8 The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up…Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation.”
àWhen we are not sowing to please the Spirit, we are sowing to please the flesh. In the case that Paul is most specifically addressing in Galatians, it is one of religious or self-justification, through circumcision. Sowing to please the flesh in this instance, feeds pride and leads us to a self-dependence, which leads us away from Christ.
àSowing to please the Spirit, doesn’t mean we won’t grow weary. We might not see instant results, as we would with circumcision; therefore, we are called persevere with the knowledge that we will reap a harvest if we don’t give up.  

“ The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers. Amen.” Galatians 6:18

Saturday, July 19, 2014

God is faithful. He is true to His Word and is to be trusted.

In His faithfulness, God is honest, promising to do good to His children. God's words are not empty, His very words have power. Once spoken it as though the truth therein is executed. He does not just say He will do, but He does. He has always done this and because of this we can have full confidence in the promises that we find in the Bible. 

While I see God's faithfulness all about my life and evidences of His daily grace, there are moments when I am tempted to question God's faithfulness. God did You not say this? Then how can You be doing this? In my reading of the gospels the last few weeks, I have seen how this was what the disciples and all who were looking to Jesus as the Christ were doing. They had expectations for the Christ based on the promises from the Scriptures. As they beheld Jesus, they initially perceived all the events that were unfolding in His life and ministry to accomplish certain ends. They saw the promises of God with earthly eyes and in light of their earthly needs. They believed Jesus would do certain things to fulfill these promises in ways they deemed necessary. We have the blessed position of hind sight and it is easy for us to belittle the faith of the early followers. I truly suspect I'd be right there with them, baffled, confused and grieving at the foot of the cross, I doubt my heart would have had a trace of hope. All of my expectations for what Jesus was here to do would seem so empty in the wake of His death.

But the Sunday morning changed everything, for as the women were there at the foot of the tomb, greeted by the messengers of glory who proclaim, "He is not here, He has risen, just as He said" 

It happened, just as He said. There wasn't one bit of what happened that Jesus didn't tell his disciples about, let alone the Prophets and Law foretell of the Messiah's work. We read Jesus's words of the "sign of Jonah," or the Son of Man being lifted up, and we ask ourselves, "how in the world did these disciples not see this coming? And how did they not have hope? Did he not tell them if they only believed they would see the Son of Man coming in all His glory? Or that they would see the temple raised in three days?" They heard the words clear enough to pen them down for all of us to this day. 

Their eyes and hearts were opened, it clicked. They realized it was all just as He said. Jesus was King, but not of an earthly Kingdom. Those early disciples lived in light of their new found citizenship and the course of history has forever been changed by their mark on the world. 

How much of their moments with Christ and with each other would have been different had they believed without expectations on Jesus? What if they had simply taken Christ at His word and believed all that He was promising them? Would they have been less anxious? A little less concerned with their place in the kingdom? More eager to invite the little children to His side? 

It is easy for me to get my eyes on the how God is going to fulfill the promise and busy myself with details, rather than simply choosing to rest secure in His faithfulness. Over dinner with my roommates tonight I was sharing a bit of this, a teeny, teeny bit, this last little thought: I often have expectation on how God will execute His faithfulness in my life and in the lives of those around me. In those moments when I don't think He is doing it right, I'm ridiculously frustrated, discouraged and sometimes down right immature and doubting. But my faithlessness does not, will not and cannot nullify His faithfulness. He is ever faithful, for He cannot deny Himself. He is the Author and Perfecter. He knows where the story is going. He's got all the characters down, the details of the scenery, even the little sparrows are all cared for by our great Creator. That is good, He is faithful, and all will happen just as He says. 

Lord, I believed one of Your promises so many years ago as a little girl. I believed You so loved the world that You gave Your one and only Son that whoever would believe in Him, wouldn't perish, but would have eternal life. At four it was meaningful and real, but so many years later and so many more promises believed, all I can do is praise You because there is nothing in me that is deserving of Your great faithfulness to me. All about me is turning and shadows, apart from You, apart from Your work and Your Spirit in me. Thank You, God, for Your faithful, covenant-making love, and for Jesus being the One Who is just and the justifier of me, and of all who believe. You are faithful, God. There is no shadow of turning in Thee, You change not and Your compassions they fail not. As Thou hast been, You will ever more be. 

Give me eyes to see Your faithfulness in circumstances are painful, give me grace to believe there will be beauty from the ashes, and help me not to guess at how. Fill my heart with wondrous expectancy as I meditate on You, Your Word and Your works! O Lord, keep my heart open to You, for You are faithful and trustworthy. May I walk by faith with and undivided heart before You.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Grandma Lillian

When I was 22 years old, it became abundantly clear that my grandma's health was taking a turn for the worst. In a matter of months the vibrant woman I had always known as my dad's mom and grandma was suddenly slipping away. Thankfully during my senior year of college my weekends were three-four day long ones, which allowed me to make a handful of trips to visit her in Arizona before she passed. 

On one visit around Christmas, my grandma was hospitalized. We visited and I could tell that she was fighting to want to keep on living on earth. It was the first time I ever felt any form of defeat from my grandma's spirit. It wasn't in the words that she said, but there was a subtle sadness in her eyes. She was sick of being in pain. We played Cribbage, grandma's favorite, my dad's favorite and I assume most of the family cherishes it as their favorite now, too. I'm sure she won. I helped her use the bathroom before I had to leave to head back home. I had never felt my grandma's dependency on me in that way.

I remember crying in my car, with the distinct realization that my grandma's sprightly spirit was slipping away. It seemed like a new wave of adulthood swept over me.

A couple of months later I  had just arrived in Phoenix for the weekend, when I got a phone call from my dad that grandma had had a serious stroke. My parents were on their way from Blythe. I was with my aunt on my mom's side when I got the news, and knew it was not too far from the end. My Aunt Anne knew how dear Grandma Lillian was to me. As I started to tear up over dinner she explained to my preteen cousins why I was so upset. She began to rattle off the wonderful qualities my grandmother had, she had tasted it in her own interactions with her, but more so saw the sheer blessing of a mother-in-law Lillian had been to her beloved sister (my mom).

The next morning I drove to the hospital across town. I am pretty sure that all of the her six kids and their spouses had made it to Phoenix over the night (maybe one was missing). They decided to start hospice care. I walked back to her room with my parents and some other family members. They had told me she wouldn't be able to speak and she only had limited use of her left side. I took her left hand and told her, "Hi grandma, I was already in Arizona when I heard you had a stroke." My words seemed to comfort her as she stared and focused on my eyes. "I love you so much." She squeezed my hand with so much strength, and after a couple of minutes I had to let go. I didn't want to cry over her, I wanted to leave her smiling.

Two weekends later at her memorial service, I remember standing up and sharing, "I'm about to graduate college, and while I don't know what my future holds or exactly what I will do. I know I want to be like my grandma Lillian. I want to love Jesus and people the way she did." 

My grandma had such a wonderful blend of gentle meekness and witty spunk. She remembered you and took interest in you, and the things you were interested in. She was so patient. She didn't mind a mess from grand children frosting Christmas cookies. But I really think grandma was generous. Generous with what she had, yes, but how much more generous with who she was. I am ever grateful to the gracious God Who loved her first and put His loving Spirit in her! What a blessing she was, and what a blessing her legacy still is. 

Tonight I saw some saving bond notes that she started giving us for Christmas when were older; the last one I received was from Christmas of 2008. It made me remember her and I began to miss her. What a blessing to know that this is not the end! Grandma Lillian is absent from the body, but she is present with the Lord! And to quote Sara Groves, "And from what I know of Him that must be very good."

Friday, August 30, 2013


"There's no place like home, there's no place like home." I honestly think if Dorothy was less emotionally dependent on her little dog Toto, we could have been bosom friends. Oh well, but how I do love home, as there really is no place like it!

Today, I left home. (Or the house that my parents have lived in for the last sixteen years in the humble town of Blythe, California.) I am so blessed to have a home I like, not because of its physical presence, but because of the feelings of warmth it brings. Thinking of my home and my family make me feel safe, valued, free and loved. Home is much more deeply routed in the sense of security, significance and acceptance that a person desires, than the physical place.

The first time that I moved away from home was as a freshmen in college. I was so pathetically homesick. It probably had something to do with the fact that I wasn't prepared for everyone evacuating the dorms on the weekends. Commuter schools, for the win! However, in my homesickness, God met me in a deeper way. I had grown a ton in my identity in Christ in high school and while I was preaching truth to myself daily, I had yet to consistently stick in the routine of intentionally getting time in the Word with Jesus everyday.

That all changed as a freshmen in college. My daily time with Jesus was the only time that I felt at home. Early in the fall semester I came to John 14:23, "Jesus replied, 'Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.'" What a promise! I was sold. I was going to obey God by spending time with Him, and He was going to love me, come to me and make His home with me. And God has done exactly that during these last 8 years!

So this morning as I drove through the desert, I was blissfully at peace. God is going before me in the move to Davis, He has been with me all along the way, and because of His Presence I will always be at home.

Lord, thank You for Your faithfulness in making Your home with me, for continually meeting me and encouraging my heart in the ups and downs of life. I am reminded of Moses' words, "If Your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here." You go with us, even as the rains cover the desert. You are good.

Friday, August 9, 2013


Obedience is a word we often shy away from using. To many it conjures up severe resistance and people throw out "legalism" as though to feign away from simply doing what is right.

Lately God has been making a point, my job is to obey Him.

I was on a cruise to Alaska during the middle of July. It was a Christian cruise with lots of old people, old people who love Dr. Charles Stanley. Dr. Stanley's life motto is "Obey God and leave the consequences to Him."  For the follower of Christ this is essential, it is the fruit of a true lover of God. While Dr. Stanley mentioned it a few times, it wasn't really until I got home from the cruise that my time in the Word began to bring it to life a bit more.

As I was finishing up Genesis, I was struck by Joseph's obedience to do what was right, even when it did not benefit him, particularly with Potiphar's wife. Joseph went to prison because he refused to sleep with another man's wife and in her bitterness and rejection she lied about it. While Joseph clearly had God's favor in the prison and ultimately it allowed him to be made second only to Pharaoh when he was brought out, I'm sure it wasn't a fun place to be. He wanted out, telling the chief cup-bearer to remember him. And Joseph is a Christ-type, we see him show compassion and forgiveness to his brothers, we see God use him to save many lives. Joseph trusted God enough to obey Him and many lives were saved.

As I have been hitting the funding trail pretty hard the last three weeks, as one of my most beloved friends is suffering deeply, and I'm on this medical detox/diet (which is petty, but I have the least amount of physical energy I have ever had), obeying without getting the desired consequences seems really, really hard. I honestly don't want to obey if things don't change, but I cry out to God and He gives me the grace to obey.

I remember Jesus, and I think of Him on the cross. God's only Son, innocent, but punished to death all the same, accused, beaten, nailed to a tree, in full weakness and agony bleeding, and abandoned. In that moment Jesus was in full obedience to the Father.

So often we focus on the cross, and rightly so, but in our lives when we focus on our own crosses or trials, we can lose sight of Jesus's resurrection power. Maybe it is the impending nature of our problems or our sinful self-absorption that weigh us down so, but once through the trial life is always a bit richer for those who walk with Jesus through it. He is true to His Word, He strengthens us and helps us, He upholds us with His righteous right hand. Jesus obeyed the Father and went to the cross, in righteousness He conquered death and on the third day He rose again. Because of Jesus's obedience to endure the cross, our sins have been atoned for once for all, and now in Him we have the promise of the resurrection. Jesus in perfect submission obeyed His Father and many lives were saved.


Tonight there is another choice before me. To obey or not to obey? My dad asked me to do something that I don't want to do because of my selfishness and pride. I know my dad thinks I'm the more mature person in the matter, and so he's calling me to be the Spirit filled, new creation that I am. Why would I want to blast this person with my grievances anyways? Self-righteous pride is all I can come up with...ugh. And if I don't blast this person? If I let him continually blast me and impose himself and his ways, and choose to obey God's commands to love, what could the fruit of that be? Could it be the saving of many lives? Could the good news of Jesus reach other people by my choosing to love this person (whom I already love and am just frequently annoyed by)?


I'm reading a book for my training called "Training for Trainers: A Discipleship Re-revolution," T4T for short, and it shares some of the Kingdom principles that have been helping the gospel spread in really exciting ways around the world. One of the things it highlighted was that maturity for the Christian is not based on how much you know, but rather how much you obey. In America, we often focus on how much we know rather than having a fully yielded heart to obey God.


Psalm 32:8-10:

"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Do not be like the horse or the mule,
    which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
    or they will not come to you.
10 Many are the woes of the wicked,
    but the Lord’s unfailing love
    surrounds the one who trusts in him."

Lord, thank You for your all sufficient grace, and your complete work on the cross. You are counseling me with Your loving eye upon me. You have me right where You want me this summer as You break me of my own ways. I trust You, Lord, for You are good. I repent of my disobedience, of wanting to justify my actions, of wanting certain comforts more than wanting to love others. I come to You. Thank You for giving me the strength each day to do Your work. Thank You for my dad's loving eye on me, too. Thank You that my parent's living room for my bedroom during this two month stay as it has made me ever so excited to move to Davis. Thank You for all You do and provide. Help me to be more like You, Jesus.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Boxes of His Faithfulness

At times it can be fairly overwhelming to see God's faithfulness in your life.

This summer I am in the middle of a move. The first leg of that move is completed my apartment was successfully boxed away (a few weeks ago now). As I packed up my belongings, I was amazed.

When I moved to Arizona two years earlier, the only things I really brought with me were a desk, a couch, books, clothing and some linens. In the time that I lived there, God really blessed me with people giving me furniture, especially from different family members. And then it seemed like dishes and all the things I could use in a kitchen were also added to the mix along the way.

As I began to pack away these possessions, I was reminded at the timely provision of the different items. Where they came from, how they blessed my heart and allowed me to bless other people from the apartment. I remember finally feeling settled in February, and it was about a week later when I was unexpectedly asked to move for my training with The Navs. But as I packed away these boxes with a bit of sadness to leave this sweet place, God so gently reminded me of His faithfulness. So even in the monotony of taping, packing and taping more boxes, I just kept telling myself, "this is a box of His faithfulness."

Then a few weeks later I was reading through Genesis and 21:1 stood out to me. It says, "Now the Lord was gracious to Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah what He had promised."

As I moved to Arizona, God gave me promises to pray for myself and for others. I have had the joy of seeing His grace and his faithfulness as He has done what He said! I can't help but think of Sarah and the way that she laughed at God's promise to her, in her old age and still barren, but God in His grace is faithful, even when we feel like He has promised us and asked us to trust Him for the impossible.

Genesis 23:1 tells us Sarah lived to be 127 years old. That's old! I'm only 26 at present and can't imagine all of the ways Sarah saw God's faithfulness in annuals of her life!!

So as my earthly possessions are boxed in storage until September, all labeled and categorized, I can't help but think of my life in the same way. I have so many boxes of God's faithfulness stored away in my heart! Boxes labeled "His tangible provision," boxes of "His abiding Presence," "His direction and guidance," "His discipline and rebuke," "His abundant grace and forgiveness." Boxes of "answered prayers," "opportunities to serve Him and help others know Him," and the boxes just keep piling up!

I praise you, Jesus, for the lavish love that you pour out on us, for we are the sons and daughters of God! Lord, what joy it is to pause and remember all the ways You have led me and to know Your great faithfulness to me! May I be quick to declare You faithful! Quick to remind myself of the ways You have provided! You didn't spare your own Son, but God, You gave Him up for us all! How will You not graciously give us all things?! I rest in this truth. I thank You for providing a ransom for me! I am secure in Your grip.