Friday, September 09, 2011
My oldest son often says the worst year of his life was 2nd grade. We'd moved from Oklahoma to Virginia, and he didn't have any friends in the neighborhood, in school, or at church.
I always respond with "Well, then you should be happy you've gotten the worst year of your life outta the way."
Somehow that never seems to make his memory of that year any more tolerable.
My theory is he had such a fabulous 1st grade that 2nd grade couldn't NOT disappoint no matter where we lived or how many friends he had or didn't have. See, in 1st grade, Matt had Jan Marvin for his teacher. Jan also attended the same church as us.
Needless to say, Matt was Jan's favorite student. He knew it. She knew it. That's just how it was. Of course, in Jan's defense, I will say that Matt is such a loveable boy that in his 12 years of public education, he's only had three teachers who I know didn't like him--Mrs. White, Mrs. Salvo, and Mrs. Williamson who taught him in 8th grade choir. Yes, the boy was failing choir at one point, which is as lousy as failing art, which my oldest daughter was doing at one point.
This is why I tell my kids "having a good attitude and doing your homework is 75% of your grade."
Anyhoo . . .
Jan doted on Matt. Matt idolized her.
Which is fitting because my favorite peanut butter cookie is Jan's recipe. It's circled with a heart in my cookbook.
Let's begin with pre-heating the oven to 375*.
1/2 cup butter, margarine or butter-flavored Crisco
1/2 cup low-salt, creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
In a mixing bowl, beat butter, peanut butter, and sugars until fluffy.
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Add egg and vanilla; beat well.
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
Add dry ingredients to batter and mix until well combined.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Criss-cross with the tines of a fork. Then bake for about 10 minutes. Cook on wire rack, and continue process until all cookies are baked.
QUESTION OF THE DAY :: Where you ever the teacher's pet? If so, tell me all about it. Or maybe you had a teacher who utterly despised you. Time to dish.
Monday, September 05, 2011
Excerpt from WAKING THE DEAD by John Eldredge, Thomas Nelson, 2003.
"War is not just one among many themds in the Bible. It is the backdrop for the whole Story, the context for everything else. God is at war. He is trampling out the vineyards where the grapes of wrath are stored. And what is he fighting for? Our freedom and restoration. The glory of God is man fully alive. In the meantime, Paul says, arm yourselves, and the first piece of equipment he urges us to don is the belt of truth (Eph. 6:10-18). We arm ourselves by getting a good, solid grip on our situation, by getting some clarity on the battle over our lives. . . .
Until we come to terms with war as the context of our days we will not understand life. We will misinterpret 90 percent of what is happening around us and to us. It will be very hard to believe that God's interntions toward us are life abundant; it will be even harder to not to feel that somehow we are just blowing it. Worse, we will begin to accept some really awful things about God. That four-year-old being molested by her daddy--that is "God's Will"? That ugly divorce that tore your family apart--God wanted that to happen too?" . . .
Most people get stuck at some point because God appears to have abandoned them. He's not coming through. Speaking about her life with a mixture of disappointment and cynicism, a young woman recently said to me, 'God is rather silent right now.' Yes, it's been awful. . . . But her attitude strikes me as deeply naive, on the level of someone caught in a cross fire who asks, rather shocked and with a sense of betrayal, 'God, why won't you make them stop firing at me?' I'm sorry, but that's not where we are right now. . . . That day is coming, later, when the lion shall lie down with the lamb and we'll all beat swords into plowshares. For now, it's a bloody battle. . . .
Before he promised us life, Jesus warned that a thief would try to steal, kill, and destroy it. How come we don't think that the thief then actually steals, kills, and destroys? You won't understand your life, you won't see clearly what has happened to you or how to live forward from here, unless you see it as a battle. A war against your heart. And you're going to need your whole heart for what's coming next . . . in the life you're living."
I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. ~ Psalm 27:13
Buy a copy of WAKING THE DEAD by John Eldredge at Amazon, CBD, Lifeway, and Barnes and Noble.