Tuesday, July 31, 2012

God's Pesticides

I never cease to be amazed by God's creation. He thought of everything.

For example, at this time of year, the pests are relentless. They seem to eat everything in sight. My one cabbage in the garden is full of holes from these little guys. I can't even see them, but they're having a cruciferous feast out there. I refuse to use pesticides on my veggies, but what's the use of growing them if my family can't enjoy them?

Enter God...oh, yes, He's here and He already knew our need for healthy pesticides. That's why he provided just what we'd need long before we knew we needed it.

For a great example of God's provision, take a look at this recipe from the Herb Companion:
Click here for the complete article.

Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray

• 10 to 12 large cloves garlic
• 4 to 6 hot chile peppers, dried or fresh
• Generous 2 cups water
• 1 tablespoon liquid castile soap
• 10 drops cinnamon, vetiver or eucalyptus essential oil, optional

1. Put garlic, chiles and water into a blender and puree contents until foamy.

2. Let mixture stand at least 2 hours or overnight. When mixture settles, you will have a coral-colored liquid with sediment at bottom.

3. Pour through a strainer lined with fine cheesecloth (or through a coffee filter or jelly bag) to remove particles that could block the sprayer valve.

4. Pour concentrate into a jar with a plastic lid (not metal), add soap, stir and label.

5. Store in a cool, dark place until needed, up to a few months. For a 1-quart or 1-liter spray bottle, use 2 tablespoons concentrate and fill the rest of the bottle with water.

6. Spray plants late in the day, so the hot sun can’t burn the plants. Cover the top and bottom of leaves. Reapply Garlic and Chile Insecticidal Soap Spray as often as needed, but allow several days between applications.

Read more: http://www.herbcompanion.com/2008-06/garlic-child-insecticidal-soap-spray.aspx#ixzz22D3wSCvr

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Inner City Silence

"A day filled with noise and voices can be a day of silence, if the noises become for us the echo of the presence of God, if the voices are, for us, messages and solicitations of God." ~Catherine de Hueck Doherty, Poustinia.

Poustinia is a little book that was in my room in a meditation center, Pacem in Terres, I visited last year. It is full of thoughts about silence and communion with God. 

It's very important to get away once or twice a year for times of silence. We don't even comprehend quiet anymore. But it's just as important to find true silence in the midst of the noise and chaos we live in every day. 

The voice of God is speaking. If only we can still our own busy thoughts to focus on His voice and hear His words to us. If our minds are tuned to Him, then even traffic noise can bring a message from our Lord to us, children playing in the park can grant us some insight to the spirit realm, or a news announcement on the radio can lead us into prayer.

The key is to set the mind on Christ first thing in the morning. Turn your heart to Him. Dedicate the day to Him. Bring your thoughts back to Him whenever you think of it throughout the day. 


He's speaking to you.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Miracle Missed

I've been reading in Matthew where Jesus fed the five thousand and then the four thousand. In one case a boy offers to share his packed lunch with the crowd. The disciples take it to Jesus but feel kind of silly doing it considering the huge number of people in the crowd that must be fed.

I suppose it took faith of some kind to even bring the boy's food to Jesus. The disciples might've just said, "Aw, thanks little boy, but you don't have any idea how much is needed for a crowd like this. Why don't you just keep it."

That's how we might've acted, recognizing the boy's nice gesture, but telling him to keep it. After all, why should he faint on the way home along with everyone else?

The boy had simple faith. He didn't try to figure out how Jesus could use it to feed so many. He just wanted to share...to be part of the solution.

But today I started to wonder about another person, one the Bible doesn't mention. I don't know if he was there, but it's very possible. It's the man who also thought to bring a lunch, but didn't share it.

This man would've been old enough to know how much food it would take to feed a crowd of that size. He'd recognize the foolishness of those who'd come so far without thought for their own provision. Weren't they similar to the virgins Jesus spoke of who didn't bring any extra oil in anticipation that the bridegroom might be late?

This was a smart man, a hard worker who always took care of his family. And he knew he'd have to make it home without fainting because his wife and children would be waiting for him. He'd be the one to provide for them for many days and years to come. They depended on him.

This man might've separated himself from the crowd slightly. He didn't want to rub their mistake in their noses. He'd hang back from the rest long enough to eat his small lunch and then rejoin them to hear the rest of what Jesus had to say.

We can understand his reasoning, can't we?

Yet, how tragic!

He missed the miracle!

He missed seeing Jesus take a small boy's small lunch and feeding over 5,000 people with it.

He missed partaking in God's supernatural provision.