Please Pass the Petroleum, Part 1

Although I am a teacher by trade, I really enjoy learning.  If something comes across interesting to me then off I go on research.  One of the topics that has always interested me is food and the body. What I am going to share holds some opinion and some fact.  I am not a doctor, nutritionist, dietitian or any other professional in this field.  I simply eat food and have a body.  I encourage you to do your research and not base your decisions or beliefs solely on me.  With that being said, I am very concerned with what is in a lot of the everyday foods we eat.

Let me start by saying I have researched food since I was a teenager.  I had a disease, Jesus saved my life and here I am…still researching food but on a different level and for different reasons.  Instead of trying to become invisible I am now trying to be healthy.  I believe wholeheartedly that the fuel we put in our bodies determines what we get out of our bodies.  I also believe many ailments and health crisis we face can be reduced or eliminated by what we eat.

There are numerous diets out there.  The keto diets seems to be really popular right now.  I don’t agree with them.  I don’t believe it is healthy to put your body in ketosis, along with other things that go with those particular diets.  That’s just what I believe.  I also don’t like pills or dietary aides.  I don’t like shakes.  I don’t like paying money to join programs.  I do like praying about my struggles and temptations and being educational about what I am eating.

My latest research has been about what is in the food we are eating.  Again, I encourage you to look up what I am saying and see for yourself.  Here comes some eye-opening information.  Ready?

Bread.  I don’t like it.  I know, I know…I just said I don’t believe in the keto diets but I also don’t like bread.  Yes, I know it’s in the Bible.  I read how they ate it all the time.  It was a main staple.  Jesus multiplied the 2 loaves to feed the 5000.  It nourished people.  However, it wasn’t today’s bread.  It wasn’t bread made in an American factory.  It wasn’t modified, bleached, and processed.  One of my issues with bread products today is L-Cysteine and dough conditioners.  Go look at your bread.  Do you see dough conditioner?  It’s in a lot of bread products.  L-Cysteine is, in part, made by boiling human hair or duck feathers.  Dough conditioner is banned in some countries because of the potassium bromate in it.  Here are a couple of links to read more about L-Cysteine and dough conditioners.

L-Cysteine

Dough Conditioners

Vanilla.  I love that stuff.  I love the real stuff.  Watch out because your vanilla could be castoreum/castor.  Let’s just say it comes from the backside of a beaver and leave it at that.  That’s one of those I really encourage you to type in the browser and read for yourself things.  It is said that a mere 292 pounds of castoreum is harvested for food each year.  I’m just one of those people who would eat that food product that uses it so I’m gonna pass unless I know for sure my “natural” vanilla comes from vanilla beans.  Manufacturers can get away with saying the food product has all-natural ingredients when this is present because, afterall, it is all-natural. You can read what Snopes says about it here, if you’d like.

Smiling Beaver Photo courtesy of Canadian Geographic Photo Club

Coffee.  It runs thru my veins.  I have literally gone weeks with the only beverage I’ve drank is hot, black coffee.  I’ve had weeks where I’ve made at least 2 pots a day.  I’d drink it day and night…or I’d get a headache.  I still drink it.  However, the brand is really important. Did you know that some major coffee manufactures use fillers?  These fillers range from twigs to soybeans to corn husks and more.  The ingredients will say something like 100% coffee because they don’t have to list the fillers.  I trust some of the Fair Trade brands, the ones with the rain forest seal, and you can ensure you aren’t getting fillers in your ground coffee if you are grinding your own beans.  If you want to be free of the pesticides and such, look for organic, as well.  Below is an article about this from the Washington Post.

Coffee Fillers

Colors.  More specifically, yellow 5, yellow 6, red 40, and red 3.  You might recognize the yellow colors as Tartrazine, or not.  Using the colors in ingredients is just prettier.  These are known carcinogens.  These are still in our food.   That’s not pretty.

Cellulose.  You know, wood pulp.  It’s in a lot of foods.  It can also be called cellulose gum, cellulose powder, and microcrystalline cellulose, among other names.  Some might look at it as just a vegan ingredient, plant based and healthy.  However, when I think about it as sawdust, which it has been called off of the nutrition label, it just kinda makes me gag.  It’s fiber.  It’s not supposed to get absorbed by our bodies.  However, I’m obviously not a fan of what the FDA allows in our food and don’t know what wood that pulp is pulped from.  So, no.  It shows up in some of the following foods (not all are listed and not all brands of what are listed have it…check your labels): salad dressing, ice cream, tomato sauce, bagels, flour tortillas, packaged fruit cups, boxed cake mix, coffee creamer, and cereal.

I could go on.  I’ve got more of this stuff and will plan another post soon.  For now, I’ll let all this digest.

JP/Grace and Pink

proverbs 23

(This verse reminds me of how I feel when food companies make food look so delicious and fun. I feel enticed to buy these goodies, which makes them richer at the expense of my health, knowing harmful ingredients are hidden inside.  That’s just how I feel and this is just the verse that came to mind.)

 

 

 

 

 

Stop the Wagon!

I tend to get annoyed easily.  In other words, to put it bluntly, things, circumstances, and the behaviors of people can easily get on my nerves.  I notice it.  I’m sorta working on it.  However, when it comes to God and what His word tells us, I can’t help but say something or, at the least, feel hurtful on behalf of my Father.  I am in a very matter-of-fact mood at the moment so here we go.

The fact that it bothers me is not the problem. As a christian, it should bother me.  IT is the bandwagon.  I’ve gotten on it.  I’ve rode it a few miles more than once, jumped off mid-travel, and waved it on by.  I’m familiar with it.  Lately, when I see it, I tend to turn the other way.

What is so bad about the bandwagon?  What is wrong with doing what your friends or the majority are doing?  What is wrong with having company while you learn about the new thing or try out the latest and greatest of whatever?  Nothing.  Nothing is really wrong with it if that’s what you want to do and feel comfortable doing that (key words ‘feel comfortable’ like deep in the gut of your heart).   I’m even kinda thinking I might want to get one of those instant pot things, like some of my coworkers have talked about, to make my terrible relationship with cooking a little better.  The problem with bandwagons is with being a follower every time the internet, social media, and our “neighbors” determine what is popular and trending.  Some trends are rather harmless while others are like a slap in the face to our Creator. The problem is the world is going to hell in a hand basket (whatever designer hand basket that is trending right now), and so much of the latest and greatest is not pleasing in the eyes of God.

We aren’t called to follow the world. Repeating… We are not called to follow the world.

1 John 3:13 “So don’t be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.”  I encourage you to back that up and begin at 1 John 3:1-13.  It explains why Cain hated Abel…because Abel was good and Cain was evil.  Cain hated Abel for being good.  That sounds like today’s news.  If we aren’t followers of the world by acting and owning and seeking out what is popular then we are automatically odd, weird, poor, ignorant, snobs and other negative adjectives. I’m telling you it’s okay because we have just ONE to please.  Audience of one, so to speak.

To keep this short, I pray that you will seek His guidance before doing what is popular and trendy (yes, I literally prayed for all reading this to seek His guidance first). Maybe a particular bandwagon is okay.  Maybe you will love it and use it for His glory.  Maybe it’s path is not good. Keep in mind 1 John 5:19 “We know that we are children of God and that the world around us is under the control of the evil one.”

I encourage you to love one another, as the Bible instructs us. I say that to reiterate that loving people has nothing to do with the bandwagons and this isn’t to talk bad about people but to put focus on the ways people act to please other people.  I just want us to remember we don’t have to have what all our friends have, and act like and try to be like one another, if it’s not pleasing to God.  Use your common sense.  Let a few bandwagons pass by, and feel the breeze of satisfactory in not needing to keep up with the Jones’ blow through your hair.  Mainly,  “Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.” 1 John 5:21

JP/Grace and Pink

romans 2-12

            Download and print this in letter size. Tape it to your mirror, put it on the     nightstand, fold it and put it in your billfold, or tape it to the inside of the cookie cabinet…read it until it’s hid in your heart. ->—>> Romans 2:12

 

 

Faith + FREE ‘faith’ Wallpapers!

Today, I saw some things that would be hard for me to believe had I not seen them for myself.  For example, when I got home from work, I saw a chihuahua in my yard wearing a coat.  I don’t have a chihuahua, and, thanks to Taco Bell,  I always envisioned them in sombreros.  I also came upon a herd of pilot trucks and police escorts surrounding a rocket ship on the highway.  The last time I looked, rocket ships were in the sky not northbound on the highway.

With that being said, these things had me looking twice with my own eyes for my mind to fully accept them.  These were actual things in front of my face, so to speak.  Yet, the Bible wants me to believe in things far more adventurous than my encounters today, things I have never seen before, wholeheartedly and without doubt.

This is done with a tool we call faith.  2 Corinthians 5:7 “For we walk by faith and not by sight.” Not everyone has the same amount of faith.  Not all grocery sacks can handle a gallon of milk without ripping…and some can hold the milk plus more.  So, how strong our faith is depends on how much we nurture it.  Romans 10:17 tells us how to grow in faith, “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.”  Reading God’s word and talking to Him daily will strengthen our faith.

The strong-faithed believe what God’s word says, without seeing and without doubt. We are instructed to! Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”  If you are running low on faith and your heart is heavy with what-ifs, worry, and concern (if the bag is ripping and the milk is about to hit the parking lot) I encourage you to continue to read God’s word and pray about it.  Strengthen your faith and put your trust in Him.  “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1

JP/Grace and Pink

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The Log

There was a painting hanging on the wall in my Sunday School class when I was a little girl some (many) years ago.  It was of Jesus with “all the little children” around Him.  They were all outside and Jesus was sitting as the kids gathered around him.  As I look back on that painting today, and similar paintings, Jesus is obviously sitting on a rock.  Of course it’s a rock.  But not for the last 30 + years, to me.  Until I recently found the picture again, I always thought Jesus was sitting on a log.  That’s probably because where I am from there aren’t a lot of rocks.  There are logs.  There are so many logs!  It’s even nicknamed the “Pineywoods” around here.

jesus_w_children

As I grew and experienced death close to me I would imagine sitting on the log in Heaven and visiting with my loved ones.  I would imagine sitting on the log and talking to Jonah, “So, some translations call it a whale and others say a big fish.  Was it a megladon?  Was it a giant squid or perhaps a giant clam and it came out as fish because they probably all smell gross like fish, right?  I bet you listened to God after that didn’t you?  Who doesn’t want to go to Ninevah?  That sounds cool.  Were you related to doubting Thomas?…”  Every time I imagine talking to someone in Heaven I am sitting on that silly log!

I’ve spent my entire life imagining Heaven and every time I do I see that log (that was really a rock).  Elijah and the Apostle John have tasted Heaven and written about their experiences.  Check out II Kings 2:1-12 for Elijah’s information.  We can read Revelation 21:10-27 to learn John’s account of it. Regardless of what I read about Heaven I am brought back to 1 Corinthians 2:9 every time.  Its tells us, “However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him.”

Just yesterday, again, I thought about someone I wanted to talk to and we were sitting on that log!  Somewhere, up top, I know there likely aren’t any logs because just a log on the ground would signify death of a tree and there is no death in Heaven.  How horrid to die and cross over to…the Pineywoods.  So, eh…I need the log to go.

The reality is, our minds can’t capture Heaven on this side of it.  You won’t find it on a painting hanging in a Sunday School class or museum.  It’s not in the illustrations of the most beautiful Bible you can purchase.  It’s not painted on the ceilings of any cathedral or any caves, for that matter.  It’s just not here.  But it’s there…ready for those who have surrendered their hearts to Jesus to enter.  As the song goes, “I Can Only Imagine.” ♥

JP/Grace and Pink

Here are a few resources you might be interested in, if you’d like to study more about Heaven.   Like I said above, no one– not even Hollywood or a best selling author– can accurately describe Heaven for us.  With that being said, Chip Ingram has deeply studied what the BIBLE says about Heaven and points those things out in his study.  ’90 Minutes in Heaven’ is based on a true story, and you will hear this man tell his personal story of dying in a car accident and coming back to life. I’ve personally read/watched the following and have been student in a study on ‘Heaven: It’s Not What You Think’.  The Amazon links are affiliated links.  Feel free to bypass my links to get to the good stuff.  Although it’s always nice to have a little income, commission is not my mission.

Heaven: It’s Not What You Think by Chip Ingram- Audio

Heaven: It’s Not What You Think by Chip Ingram- Book

 

90 minutes in heaven

90 Minutes in Heaven- Book

90 Minutes in Heaven- DVD

Image result for I can Only Imagine Mercy Me

I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me – Digital Audio Download

 

FREE Printables to Help You Smash Your Goals!

Yay!  I love FREE, especially when it is something that will enhance my life by helping me be more organized and efficient with my time.  I hope you enjoy these beautiful printables as much as I am enjoying them!♥

goals for today (1)
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goals for this week (1)goals for this week (1) <—< Click for your free printable!

to do (1)to do (1) <—< Click for your free printable!

 

Enjoy!  JP/Grace and Pink

 

Fear Examined

This confused me for the longest…fear the Lord. Why do I fear God who has my back and sent his son to die for ME. I love God, yet the Bible tells me to fear Him. So, ya know, I did the research.
How confusing it can be. Peter tells us to fear God yet King David is over here in Psalms telling us perfect love expels fear. The Lord tells us in Isaiah 41:10 to fear not and then Proverbs 3:7 tells us to fear the Lord.   Thanks guys!
So what it comes down to is the definition of fear. This is not the fear of torture or spiders. This fear means utmost respect, be mindful you will be judged, and to be in awe of God. It is a positive reference.
The wicked do not fear God. Therefore, are not mindful of his judgement. Deuteronomy tells us the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
I think about it like how a kid LOVES his teacher and knows the school rules but he has been dreaming of what it would be like squirting out all the soap in the bathroom and make a glistening green puddle of slime. He knows it is wrong and fears the consequence (he is mindful, respectful of teacher and her rules). He has the fear of the teacher even though he adores her. This goes back to Deuteronomy. If he makes that puddle does it make him wicked? No way. It means he sinned (he knew it was wrong and he did it anyway) and we all sin and we are not all wicked. The difference is that in his little heart he fears being caught…but he still loves his teacher. I couldn’t help but throw in a school related analogy!
Last thing…the benefits of fearing God come in this life but the greatest benefits will be experienced in the eternal life. See 1Tim.4:8 & Psalm 16:11.
So, fearing God=respecting God and his word, understanding you will be judged for your choices. ♡

JP/Grace and Pink

Fear of the Lord Pic.png

Print this image in a bookmark! >—–>> Fear of the Lord Printable Bookmark

 

Whatever…

Colossians 3:23 tells us, “Whatever you do, do it as though you are working for the Lord and not for human masters…” I catch myself thinking this verse just means to do my “paying” job to the best of my ability.  I shouldn’t just go to that place that I set my alarm clock for and give it 100% and then come home and be mediocre.  In other words, I shouldn’t be like Ruth 8 to 5 and Jezebel evenings and weekends.

In reality, it says WHATEVER you do. It’s everything…your employment, homemaking, parenting, volunteering and yes, laundry! It’s at church and at the tattoo shop (yes, I go there).  It’s if you are shopping and first in line at Wal-Mart or behind a family with six kids that only shops once a month…and brought the kids with them.  It’s if you are watching a sporting event and your team is winning or if your team seems to have forgotten how to play the game.  It’s if you are giving a multi-million dollar presentation for your company or you are that neat person that stands in the bathrooms and hands out towels.  It’s if you are at the laundry mat or someone just treated you like a door mat.  It’s whatever you are doing!  I know I need this reminder!

Thankfully, God’s not eating my cooking, but He does know my heart is trying. ♥

JP/Grace and Pink

Colossians 3_23 png

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No Foo-Foo Here

 

Angel Wings GP

I was thinking again…this time about angels. It’s a wee irritating to see frilly, foo-foo depictions of angels in society. Almost everywhere you look a dainty and feminine angel figurine sits upon a shelf or shows up in media to guide someone thru a near death experience to then go sit back upon a billowy cloud. In the Bible, the typical response when seeing an angel was fear and awe. I don’t think anybody was like, Oh, you are so cute…I want to tickle you.
Though angels are not human, they can take the form of a man. A male persona is what is identified in the Bible many times when an angel appeared to a human. For example, in Acts, Cornelius was visited by an angel and he answered him as “sir”. Angels can take on other forms. At the tomb when Jesus reserected, the angel was a radiating, dazzling light. I personally picture angels as great warriors. (Angel comes from Greek and is translated to messenger).
Angels have many jobs in the Bible. In scripture we can find where they are not only messengers but they are also used by God to provide, guide, protect, encourage, strengthen, and more…
No wonder the Bible says, “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” Hebrews 13:2
God might have a message for you thru one of his angels.
We also know that Satan was an angel (Lucifer) and many angels followed him out of Heaven (demons). (Lucifer was an angel- created by God- NEVER equal to his creator and can NEVER defeat God)
We know Michael (the angel) will lead God’s army against Satan’s forces, which is found in Revelation. That’s quiet the opposite of foo-foo. That is mighty warrior, fierce and strong. I recommend rethinking those ceramic ‘angels’ atop lacey doilies in the foyer, on the coffee table, and the toilet tank (I’ve seen them there), and replace those images in your mind with the way the Bible depicts angels, instead.  I feel much better knowing of God’s angels as the Bible describes them versus how society portrays them…which is almost to the point one may come and take my tooth at night and leave a trail of glitter behind.

JP/Grace and Pink