Friday, June 29, 2012

my top 5 favorite {real food} snacks

A little Friday confession: I am a snacker. I look forward to my snacks as much as I do meals. :D

Over here, Ange asked about my favorite real food snacks these days, so I thought I would share some of my favorites with you guys too!

Here they are in no particular order:

1. dates

Okay, so dates are the ultimate food on the original food diet. Now I admit that they look totally disgusting, but they are God's candy, I tell you. It's like eating cookie dough and a caramel bar all in one bite. They ring in at 40 calories a piece, and are almost $4 per lb. They are worthy every penny {and calorie}.

Dates also give your body pure glucose, so they are the perfect food for working out. I eat these instead of granola bars now. :D

2. frozen bananas
Frozen bananas are pure deliciousness.  If dates are God's candy, then frozen bananas are God's ice cream. Speaking of which, you must try blending them up in the food processor to make banana soft serve. They look like this when you do:

recipe and photo from choosing raw
Ahhh, heavenly. I eat at least two of these a day!

3. walnuts

pinterest source

I have a serious love for walnuts. Maybe it's something to do with their fat content, but walnuts {and other nuts} leave you feeling happy and full. Especially when you pair them with frozen bananas and dates in the food processor {think caramel nut ice cream!}. Yum.

4. pumpkin sauce


This dessert-like sauce is still one of my favorite foods! I don't even like pumpkin pie, but I love this stuff. It's best served warm, and eating it makes you feel like you just ate a luxurious dessert!

5. watermelon

pinterest source
Guilt-free food is the name of the game with watermelon. It's mostly water, and you can eat nearly as much as you want. {Just don't weigh for two days if you do! ;)}

Before we became original food/vegan, watermelon was the only food I ate on this list. So changing our diet has definitely changed the way I snack. I would normally eat granola bars before I exercised, and some sort of low-fat dairy ice cream at night, but now I've replaced them with real food energy sources, and I can't imagine going back! :D

Oh, and did you notice that four out of five of my top snacks are sweet? Oh, my, how I love sweets! :P

Do you have a sweet tooth too? Or do you prefer salty snacks?

What are your favorite healthy snacks? I'd love to hear some new ideas!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

thrifty thursday: a craigslist tufted velvet sofa

I have been so excited to share my newest find with you this week {could you tell??}.

It all started when my little girl decided to color on our white sofa last weekend. I love my white couch, but not when it comes to wandering crayons in the hands of a 2 year-old.

our living room
We'd been planning to get another set of slipcovers for the couch, but I didn't want to spend the extra money {$50} for just the convenience of an extra set.

So anyway, on Friday, my mom came to stay {and brought blackberries and a BOX of peaches with her!}, and she and my Granny watched the kids all Saturday afternoon.

With our free time, Rob and I {okay, okay, I} decided we would go furniture shopping for fun. Oddly enough, we had never really done major furniture shopping in our 12.5 years together! We have had three brand new pieces of real furniture in our marriage, a leather couch, a desk, and a set of bunk beds, and they all came from Sam's. :)

So, we go furniture shopping. First to the La-Z-Boy store, where I walk in the door and immediately choke when I see the first fabric couch on display for $1300. $1300?? For my kids to destroy? I'd have to be crazy, or wanting to hide some money from the government or something.

And oh my goodness gracious, who can afford a $2000 recliner anyway? What?? A chair that costs as much as my first car???

We did one round and quickly made our exit. Ahem.

That was pretty much the story for every store we went to. Go, sit on a few car-priced sofas, try to avoid the salespeople {impossible}, and leave thinking new furniture purchases truly might never be an option.

And what's worse is that I didn't actually find a sofa I liked. I must be weird, because I didn't see anything I loved out of hundreds of couches.

The best deal I found by far was online from a local furniture store:

source
And for $700, she apparently was a real steal {remember the 2k recliners???}. But she only came in cream fabric. I'm not daring enough for that risky business.

So I mentally give up on buying new furniture. And after seeing what was out there, I was more than okay with that. We need pre-owned furniture. And something cute. :)

The shopping exercise was a good thing for me.

And so, what do you know, I search Craigslist again and find this just listed:


The seller says it's 8 feet long, in great condition, and no stains.

And it's $50. 

$50. For the price of new slipcovers, I can get an antique tufted velvet sofa. That looks like my favorite couch.

I email, expecting it to be sold, and to my surprise, get an email back saying it isn't yet.

I show the hubs, and he is in love, people.

If you ever want a used piece of furniture, it seems that all you have to do is take your husband shopping for the new version. He will have never been so happy to fork over $50.

Rob loves the picture of it. I love it too. But is it comfy? Will such an old couch really be in good condition? I mean, it's old.You know Craigslist people.

We arrange a time, and go to see it the next morning.

And it's not just in great condition, it's in incredible condition.

I went in almost hoping to find something wrong with it so he could come down from $50 {I'm cheap, I know}.

But it was perfect.

We sat down.

It was softer and more comfortable than 90% of the couches we sat on last weekend. And did I mention it was in perfect shape? ;) It was 50 years old, the owner told us.

Velvet. Tufted. Sofa. For $50. Not $700. This was like a blessing from Heaven!

We were sold. :D

And if it weren't good enough, he asked us if we wanted this {for free}:


Hmm...why, sure, we will take a free antique headboard. :)

We brought them home, and I loved the sofa even more:


I know it's still a light color, and it's not washable like the other, but for $50, I think we'll see how it fares in the living room.

Right now the kids have the white couch and the leather couch, and the soft couch belongs to mommy and daddy. :P

I'm debating whether to sell the white sofa. I still love the way it looks in the living room. And all three pieces still fit well. And all the crayon came out with bleach, which is the biggest benefit of the white sofa.... :D

Hmmmm.....

Decisions, decisions. ;)

Do I sell the white sofa we bought used as well and pocket the difference? Or do I keep it on standby for other rooms? I'm not sure yet.

Either way, I'm glad furniture stores exist. Someone else buys new, takes the hit, and I get to save {sometimes 50 years later}. :D



Q: Have you found a great furniture deal on Craigslist? I love a good find!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

walking through the gospel: man, sin, and the fall


We are now in week three of our study, Walking Through the Gospel! Last week we covered a little of who God is and had some great questions asked there! Now that we have a picture of the awesomeness of God, we can talk about man, and who he is in light of the God of the universe.

Without seeing who we are in light of God, we don't understand our place in creation. We are humans- made to glorify and enjoy God, but from the very beginning we've desired to walk in our way, apart from God's will.

So let's start from the beginning.

1. Man is created.
Genesis, the first book of the Bible, gives us the details of how humanity began. In the very first chapter, it tells us that God created man on the sixth day in the Garden of Eden:

26Then God said, “Let us make manh in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

27So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.


and in Genesis 2 we get more of the story:

When no bush of the fielda was yet in the landb and no small plant of the field had yet sprung up—for the LORD God had not caused it to rain on the land, and there was no man to work the ground, 6and a mistc was going up from the land and was watering the whole face of the ground— 7then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature. 8And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed. 9And out of the ground the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.


So there was no man- just the earth, and then God formed man and breathed life into him. He gave him a garden, and plants to eat, and there were two significant trees there to eat or not eat from: the tree of life, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.


15The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. 16And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, 17but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eatd of it you shall surely die.”


So the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was the only tree from which they could not eat. God told Adam before Eve was even created that if he ate of that tree he would surely die.

You see, man was created to live forever. He was allowed to eat from the tree of life, which gave eternal life to man.

God made the garden of Eden, and walked in fellowship with man there. God and man walked together. Isn't that incredible?


2. Man sins by disobeying God.
But, things change. After Eve is created, Satan, the enemy of God, comes to talk to her in the form of a snake.  A snake indwelled by Satan talks to a woman? Why, yes. :)

We know that the serpent was very crafty:

Genesis 3:
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made.
He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘Youa shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” 2And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, 3but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” 4But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 

So here is the turning point for all of creation. Satan makes Eve doubt what God said, and Eve believes him. Satan sells disobedience to her by offering the chance to be in a "higher" state than she was: to become like God, knowing good and evil.

6So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise,b she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 7Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

So Eve took of the fruit because of deception, but Adam takes the fruit from Eve knowing full well what he is doing. Adam was not deceived:

1 Timothy 2:13-14:
For Adam was formed first, then Eve; 14and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. 

Because they ate of the tree, their eyes were opened to good and evil, and they were ashamed of their nakedness. Adam had broken the one and only rule in all of creation, and he changed the course of all mankind.

Because they had eaten of the tree, God brought a curse upon both the man and the woman, and they had to die. Adam and Eve could no longer live eternally, because God removed them from the garden and from the tree of life:

Genesis 3:
Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—” 23therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. 24He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life.

3. Sin entered the world, and affects all of mankind.
So Adam's disobeying of God's command is what we call sin. Sin is a breaking of the "law" that God has set in place. And this disobedience to God's law is in every person's heart.

Romans 5:12
Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—


So Adam's sin brought the curse of death for all of humanity. Every man and woman has sinned since the beginning {with the exception of Jesus, which we will talk about later}.

Every person sins, and every person is destined to die. We see this in our physical realm here on the earth, and the Bible confirms it.


Romans 3:23:
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

and:

Romans 3:

“None is righteous, no, not one;
11 no one understands;
no one seeks for God.
12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good,
not even one.”


All people are sinners, and do not seek after God. This seems hopeless, and it gets worse, but then it gets better.

4. Man's sin has doomed him to eternal separation from God.

You might think, "but I'm a good person deep down." This is where the world {those who do not believe} hates the Word of God. The Bible says that none are good. None are righteous before God. It brings to light the sin inside of every person's heart, and reveals that we are all without good.

God is HOLY. He is the perfect God, and only the sinless can come before Him.

If you have sinned {even once}, you cannot come before God. And all wrongdoing is sin.

Isaiah 59:

Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save,
or his ear dull, that it cannot hear;
2 but your iniquities have made a separation
between you and your God,
and your sins have hidden his face from you
so that he does not hear.



5. Man has ONE hope.
The sin of man- what we call the transgression, or the going against of God's law keeps him apart from God, and destines him to death. Here is both the bad news, and the good news:

Romans 6:23:
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.


The consequences of sin are death and separation from God forever, but God offers a FREE gift of eternal life when you believe in Him!! Ahhhh!!!! There isn't only bad news after all!

Without God, our hearts are full of sin and self-seeking, but when we believe in Jesus, we are made sinless!!

By the sacrifice of Jesus we are made clean from our sin, and we can stand before Him as children of God when we have faith in Him.

And we will talk more about Jesus next week, but feel free to email me if you have questions and want to know how to follow Jesus now. It's a lot to take in, and I would love to try to answer your questions!

Question:

Can you see sin in your own life today? Have you been made clean from your sins because of Jesus?

_______________________________________________________



next week:

Jesus, God in the Flesh

you can download the study guide to prepare for next week
_______________________________________________________

previous posts in the walking through the gospel series:



Monday, June 25, 2012

monday happenings at our house + a new Craigslist find

Okay, so I'm completely thrilled with my new Craigslist find today. I really should wait until Thursday to share, but I'm too excited to be the proud new owner of this sweet little 8-foot vintage gem:


I can't wait to share more of the story {and how much I paid for it!!!} on thrifty thursday! It's ridiculously exciting. For me, anyway! ;)

Since the sofa purchase changed the course of our day, I thought I'd share what our crazy Monday has looked like for us so far... :)

7:55 wake up
 {about 1-1.5 hours later than normal- I drank too much tea last night and was up until 3. And then had terrible, terrible dreams where I actually died twice! No more late night tea for me. sheesh.}
devo + coffee time
breakfast for the family.
call man about craigslist sofa
get dressed
go to the atm
go pick up sofa
go back to pick up other item the seller offered to us for free
bank run
one quick Dillard's stop for clearance sandals
lunch with the hubs and visit with my dad
Sam's for groceries 
{the lady who checked my purchase at the door said, "girl, you're in here all the time!" To which I replied, oh yeah, we pretty much live here. :P We only buy our groceries at Sam's these days! You know it's bad when the door checker knows you've been in three times this week...}

Make a cookie cake for a friend {Sam's pre-made cookie dough, homemade icing}
vacuum carpet and pick up living room to move new couch
make children clean up their messes
have them rest on the couch for naps
pick up dirty clothes in the bathroom and around the house
put baked potatoes in the oven for tonight
discipline 3 year old and 4 year old for getting up
blog while listening to music for tonight's fitness class
answer Facebook comments

and next: warm up a cup of coffee from this morning and get ready to teach BODYCOMBAT this afternoon at the gym.

Then Lord-willing, I'll come home, do laundry, make dinner, sweep the floors, and get ready for bed. That's the plan, anyway! Maybe I'll squeeze a few other things in there. We'll see! :P

I haven't been able to do 12 hour challenge in the last couple of weeks since life has been so crazy, but since I haven't been at home or in a routine, the internet use has been much more sporadic, so I have been on off and on through the day. I haven't been able to keep a regular schedule here at the house, but I'll be thrilled when I can do it again. Maybe tomorrow!

I miss it. For real. Excitement is fun, but routines are sweet. :D

What did your Monday look like?




summer survival giveaway winners

Here are the winners from last week's giveaway:

first prize: $25 gift card of your choice:

#147 Kerry from A Jane Austen Girl in Modern World who said "my birthday" was her favorite summer activity!

winners of the ebook, the Summer Survival Calendar:
#84 MommyCara

#90: Lucy from I Am Vacuuming in Pearls

#26: Wendy who said: "I loved to take my barbies on 'camping trips' underneath the bushes in our front yard. My mom let me dig a hole for a big tupperware bowl, which I filled with water (and a couple rocks in the bottom) to make a 'swimming hole' for them." {I love this! Camping barbie, and tupperware! And who remembers tupperware??? That stuff lasts forever! :) }

I will be emailing those who won! :D  Thank you all for entering!

And if you didn't win, don't forget you can still use the promo codes below to save on the Summer Survival Calendar!

BHM9 20% off the 2012 Summer Calendar {which sells for $9}
BHM14 20% off the 2012/2011/2010 Summer Calendar Bundle {which sells for $14}

Friday, June 22, 2012

workouts you can do at home + losing excess weight


We all have times when making it to the gym isn't a possibility {financially, or time-wise!}, and it would be easier just do a quick workout at home. Luckily we live in the age of streaming video! ;)


Here's a quick arm toning video:


And if Pilates is more your style:



Ah, I love exercise! ;) It makes me feel good {ah, endorphins!}- it keeps me strong and in shape, and it gives me more energy through the week! Exercise is good, but I think it's only part of the health equation.

As a fitness instructor, I am often asked by my class members {and sometimes even strangers at the store}, "What's the best way for me to lose weight? How often should I work out? What should I eat?"

Now I'm not a nutritionist by any means, but I really believe that the way you look is 10% how you exercise and 90% what you eat. And my motto is that you cannot out-exercise your mouth. {unless you're an Olympic athlete. I'll give you that.} :)


So, this is the answer I give to people when they ask me those questions:

If you have a few extra pounds you'd like to lose, your best bet in my experience is to start by cutting out refined carbohydrates altogether. When you refrain from eating calorie-dense, blood-sugar-raising empty carbs I think you will quickly notice a difference in the way your body looks and feels.

Leave behind breads, pastas, cereals, and pre-packaged snacks and your mid-section will suddenly feel much slimmer- I can almost guarantee it!  {Your belly is holding on to those dense carbs and making you bloated as you digest them.} Drink water or tea instead of bubbly drinks and you'll notice you feel much better too... :D

You can easily replace those saturated, man-created carbs with naturally occurring ones like potatoes, oatmeal, quinoa, or rice. Or if you have lower energy needs, eat more slow carbs like beans, lentils, or zucchini.

It's really not about looking a certain way as much as it is understanding the place food has in your heart, and taking care of the body you've been given in your time on this earth.

For me, refined carbs don't make me feel good, and they leave my blood sugar on a roller coaster that isn't fun- one that makes me extremely grumpy when I haven't eaten, not to mention leaves me with extra storage on my hips. ;) They make food control my daily {or hourly} attitude, if that makes sense.

I believe if you want to feel better long-term, you should try to eat only the foods God gave us to eat in some form resembling their natural state. It's a very hard thing to leave behind granola bars and bread and breakfast cereals {trust me, I know!}. But it's so, so good when you do.

Eating real food is great for you, and it allows your body to rid itself of the excess fat storage that it doesn't want to keep. The truth is, your body actually doesn't want to carry extra pounds around any more than your mind does, and when you eat real food, you'll find the weight will start falling off on it's own!

So, anyway, that's the long answer. :)

I know it's such a hard balance to eat healthily without being focused on self-appearance. It's a struggle I think we all face, or at least I know I do. But God is gracious, and patient with our slow-learning selves! :) He gives us the right heart when we seek Him, amen? :D

Give yourself some grace in this area too- try to do what you feel God is leading you to do, not what I or others think you should do. It's between you and the Lord. :)

Do you guys have fitness or food questions today? I'd love to try to answer them! :)


{don't forget to enter the summer survival giveaway before Monday! You can win a $25 gift card or an ebook!}


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

always kiss me good morning {printable}

My "be" goal for this month is to be more affectionate- specifically, to kiss my husband and each of my babies every morning before breakfast. 

I never thought I'd love a new goal so much. Just the simple act of kissing them good morning makes my heart and theirs a little closer through the day.

And even more than that, it reminds me that these little ones won't always be here to kiss good morning.

And that alone makes me want to squeeze them a little tighter all day long. :)

Sweet babies.

You've heard "always kiss me good night"... 

well, now I have a new motto to help me remember my "be" goal:

pin it

And I made you a printable so you can remember too . :)



I'm leaving mine in the kitchen so I remember to kiss my sweet ones before breakfast. :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

walking through the gospel: week 2: God, Eternal and Loving Creator


We are in week two of our study, Walking Through the Gospel. Last week we talked about the Bible- and why we believe it, and this week we get to talk about our God, the Creator of the universe.

Does that make you feel crazy excited? It does me! :D

{side note: isn't it just completely amazing that we get to study God publicly? We are so blessed to have the freedom to just talk about Him and read about Him- no censors, no fear of being caught. Ahhh! Thank you Lord!}

The deity of God is at the heart of everything we believe. {deity meaning He the ultimate king of everything- the one who can control all things.}

It's important to know who He is- it shapes every part of what we believe. For instance, if we believe that he just created the world and left it alone {as some do}, then we would think that He didn't control each day of our lives- we would have to believe that everything would happen randomly, because God left it to it's own.

Instead, it is a comfort to know that He is over all things, because nothing happens outside of His control- every detail is under His care. Isn't that awesome?

So who is God?

1.  He is the creator of all things.

The very first chapter of the Bible tells us of the world being created by the very words of God. He simply spoke and brought everything- the heavens, earth, water, light, night, day, animals, plants and trees- into existence. He brought all of the world into being in six days.

He formed man in His own image- which means that He made man to be a reasoning, emotional being with a will unlike any other creature on the earth.


Genesis 1:
26Then God said, “Let us make manh in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

27So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

28And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth."


2. He is ruler of all things.

God knows everything and is present over all His creation at all times- it's what we call omniscience, and omnipresence. He is over all things.

I love the way the Psalm says it best:

Psalm 103:19
The LORD has established his throne in the heavens,
and his kingdom rules over all.

There is one God who rules the universe. His kingdom rules over all, and His throne is in the heavens.

1 Corinthians 8:6
6yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

Again, there in 1 Corinthians, it tells us again of the story of creation- there is one God, our Father, from whom are all things. He brought everything into existence- and knows everything. And because He created us, it is for Him and His purpose that we exist.

3. He is Father.

In the verse above, He is called father. He is referred to as "father" many, many times in the Bible.

This is important to catch. As we looked at Genesis 1, you might have noticed He said "let us make man in our image, after our likeness."

This "our" is what we call the Trinity. When He says "our" image, God is referring to Himself, His Son, and His Holy Spirit- what we know of as God existing in three persons. They are one, together.

This is understandably hard to wrap your mind around. I have believed for 25 years, and it's still so much bigger than I can understand. :) God exists in three persons- each of which we will talk about in detail over the next few weeks individually, but let's say for now that God is the Father, Jesus is the Son, and the Holy Spirit is like the divine agent, and they work together with one will.

Keeping what we call the Trinity in mind, we call God the Father because we are His children. Jesus referred to Him as Father countless times in the New Testament, and even told us to pray to Him as Father:

Matthew 6:
But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
7“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. 9Pray then like this:

“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.a

10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,b
on earth as it is in heaven.

11 Give us this day our daily bread,c
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.

13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.d

The fact that we are His children and He is our Father makes our relationship with God so different. Did you see in verse 8 that He knows all things before you ask Him? That's the provision of the Father- He cares for us, and knows our needs! He is our loving provider of all things.

Matthew 6:
31Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

4. He is love.

Our Father provides for His children, because He is full of love, goodness, mercy, and grace.

Psalm 145:
8 The LORD is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 The LORD is good to all,
and his mercy is over all that he has made.

The Bible is filled with descriptions of God, and the more we study, the more we can learn about His nature. He is only good, and can do no evil. His mercy is everlasting- which means that it does not run out. He is the epitome of love.

1 John 4:
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

His ultimate love was shown through {or made manifest by} Him sending His Son to die for our sins.

Ahh, there's so much there!! But He loves us so dearly, so very dearly, that He gave up His Son to be crucified on a cross that we might live instead of die apart from Him!

Oh, isn't that amazing????

5. He is eternal.

He has always been, and will always be. This is another incredible thing that humans cannot fully understand. Eternity is a hard thing for us to grasp, but my favorite imperfect illustration that kind of gives you an idea is this:

Imagine you stretched out a string across an entire football field. Go to the center of it and find one atom, and that's the span of our life in view of eternity. God has existed for more than the football field before and after our little atom.

Psalm 90:
Lord, you have been our dwelling placea
in all generations.
2 Before the mountains were brought forth,
or ever you had formed the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
3 You return man to dust
and say, “Return, O children of man!”b
4 For a thousand years in your sight
are but as yesterday when it is past,
or as a watch in the night.


and His goodness has been as long as He has:
Psalm 100:6

For the LORD is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.
Ahh, isn't that amazing? God, the Creator of the universe, loves and cares for you- His love endures forever, and His provision for us far exceeds what we can ever imagine.

He LOVES you. 

He loves YOU!

And that's the best news we could ever hear!! Oh, we don't deserve His wonderful love, and He gives it to us anyway! Thank you, thank you Lord, for your love. We bless your name, oh creator, and giver of all things! :D

Question:

So, tell me, does knowing who God is change the way you live your life each day?

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next week:
Man, Sin, and the Fall
you can download the study guide to prepare for next week
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previous posts in the walking through the gospel series:
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