RaisingRices Artisan Bread “Jesus Bread”

If you guys have been following RaisingRices on Facebook or Instagram @RaisingRices, you would have seen our “Jesus Bread.” This artisan bread has been a staple in our home. In fact we make this bread at least twice a week (and sometimes more!)

This is our favorite bread to use as communion bread. When Darren leads our family through communion (as well as others that have come into our household), the fresh artisan round loaf been torn in two leaves such a visual reminder to our household of the sacrifice that Jesus made on the Cross.

We use this bread at our sabbath communion we do every Saturday (stay tune in the summer we are going to bake the bread out camping in a dutch oven, can’t wait!) We also do communion together at our in home worship nights, and when we have other biblical community families over throughout the week. Our church family once a month gather during our regular schedule service time to share a meal together; and this last month the theme was soup and our family baked and brought 6 loafs to share. (Not only were they all eaten but it was SUPER simple and such a blessing.)

Lastly, one other of our staples in the Rice family during the week is on Thursday we do homemade soup and fresh made artisan bread. This staple is a life-saver, because on Thursday our three older kids do a Karate Class down the street (it is called KICKS karate school, ran by this amazing Christian couple, we feel so blessed by the class). But, we are all out of the house until past dinner time, so when we get home the family is hungry, and dinner is on the table in 2 seconds flat.

I can’t wait to share with you all these SUPER EASY recipe! Darren and I have mortified this recipe into our own and are so excited to share with you all! We pray that as you make-bake-eat-share this bread that you would also be reminded of the John 6:35

35 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

Here is the RaisingRices Artisan Bread Recipe:

One of the reasons this recipe is SO SUPER EASY is because it is a NO-KNEAD bread!

Ingredients:

3 Cups all-purpose flour (you will also need an additional about 1/4 cups when you transfer into your baking dish)

1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

1 3/4 cups of WARM water (we usually pour 1 1/2 cups of water in and then mix and if we need more of a cement like texture then we add the rest, see picture below)

Directions:

In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and say. Then add water and stir until blended. The texture will be super sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 18 hours, at room tempter for best results. (We have done it in less time by resting in our oven on bread proof setting, rested about 10-12 hours there, but waiting the 18hr makes a great texture, so plan ahead the day before).

Dough is read when it is surface has bubble dots on the surface.

Lightly flour your counter (with the addition 1/4 cup of flour), take the dough out of the bowl and on counter, fold dough over 3 to 4 times tucking in the round ball to smooth on top. Then gentle pick up the dough ball and put in cooking container. (You want to find something that has a lid, like a dutch oven for example.) Once you put the dough in let it sit for another 2 hours at room temperature.

Preheat oven for 450 degrees

Bake for 30 minutes covered. Then uncover and bake for 4-6 more minutes (this will allow the top to brown).

Let rest for at least 10 minutes to allow for easier cutting. And ENJOY!

For you visual learners out there, here is a play-by-play below 🙂

(at the very end we have options for variations on the original artisan flavor.)

I priced out how much it would be to buy an organic artisan bread for a local grocery store (New Seasons) and it would cost anywhere from $6.00 to $8:00 dollars! Darren and I even with buying organic flour (we buy it in bulk at costco, along with the yeast and salt) that we can make each loaf for around $1.00 dollar!!!

We like to combine all the dry ingredients in a large glass bowl, this helps to have room to mix when the water gets poured in.

This is the sticky part when we combine the water, make sure to use WARM water! It does make a difference! (remember that too hot of water will kill the yeast though, so just warm.)

We bought this tool just recently, it is a bread mixer, and it is nice! We were using wooden spoons before (which still work great) but the dough doesn’t stick as bad to this tool.

Mix, Mix, Mix 🙂

This is the texture you are looking for, but this recipe is pretty forgiving, however we would lean towards more wet then dry, because you will be adding more flour when you fold it into a ball.

Cover with plastic wrap, OR a towel. Let it rest! I know I am a bit A type personality but we have a bread making schedule that helps me remember to make the artisan bread to rest the day before. 🙂

After resting for 18 hours (we like to do ours overnight) you can see it all rises and has bubbles.

This is when you scoop it out with your hand and place it on the extra flour, give it a few turns to put it into a ball, making the top look smooth; this will give you a smoother surface on top 🙂

Then place into your bake pan with (looking for a baking pan that has a lid).  We have used dutch ovens before but our go to is Bon Cook (used to be called Demarle) glass silicon large round mold withe lid.

Here is after we have place the ball into our baking dish and waited another 2 hours, you can see it rises again to make it fluffy and ready to bake.

Remember to take off the lid after 30 mins and bake for another 4-6 to get nice and brown on top 🙂

Eat and Enjoy! Share with Others! Invite them into your home! Share Communion with others, “do this in remembrance of me” (1 Cor. 11:24)

Variations 🙂

(these are to your personal taste, so try and have fun)

  • Cinnamon and Raisin (Darren loves to make this one for the kids for breakfast, with peanut butter on it 🙂 about 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/3 cup of raisins)
  • Rosemary and Garlic (Great for dinner bread, about 1/2 teaspoon of Rosemary and 1/4 Garlic.)
  • Cheese and Herb (herb blend about 1/2 teaspoon, about 1/4 garlic, and add about 1 cup shredded cheese on top of bread. Just before baking brush on beaten egg to glaze and then add cheese.
  • Other ideas: Kalamata Olives, Roasted Garlic, Sun-dried Tomatoes or Nuts and Dried Fruit)
  • Also experiment with flavored butters YUM!!
  • This is our favorite bread for crunch grilled cheese sandwiches and soup, double YUM!
  • Darren and I love this bread with a yummy bruschetta on top!!! I am getting hungry just talking about it!

POST ANY PICTURES IN THE COMMENTS WE WOULD LOVE TO SEE YOUR CREATIONS!!!

Remember to follow us on Pinterest, Facebook and on Instagram @RaisingRices

Advertisements

Epsom Salt Baths – Worth it?

I have become obsessed with Epsom Salt Baths! I have heard that they are super beneficial but never did the research myself, well, now I have and I would LOVE to share with you all some of the Health Benefits of Epsom Salt baths.

What is Epsom Salt???

Epsom salts are a naturally occurring pure mineral compounds made of sulfate and magnesium. It was actually named after a saline spring in Surrey, England, where it was first discovered. (This is not the same as Table Salt.)

How can we use Epsom Salt?

My favorite way (and the only way I currently am using Epsom Salts) is in a hot bath or foot soak. As a mom I use it as a decompress time. I feel like it allows me to relax and have that time to think through the day or previous days (I don’t want you to think I get to take Epsom Baths everyday hahah … honestly like once a week usually haha). It also helps me to “remove” whatever has built up during the day which allows me to focus in on my relationship with my husband in the evening, to be able to give him a better focused attention.

So other then relaxing what are the benefits?

Due to the ability for the salt to penetrate into the skin it can help in the following areas:

  • Reduce Stress
  • Detox the body (Removal of pollutants, metabolic waste)
  • Promote weight loss (source)
  • Stiff joints and tight muscles
  • Arthritis pain and swelling
  • Insomnia
  • Psoriasis
  • Soreness from diarrhea
  • Swollen and tired feet (improve athlete’s foot, helps ease: bunions, corns and calluses, plantar fasciitis, flat feet, tarsal tunnel syndrome)
  • Complications from sunburn
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Ingrown toenails (improve toenail fungus)
  • Insulin sensitivity
  • Poor circulation
  • Acidity
  • Inflammation
  • Migraines

How to use?

In general terms you can use this recipe and adapt to your needs:)

1-2 Cups of Epsom salt (see bottom of article for more clear amount based on age and weight)

10-20 drops of essential oil (this is optional and I prefer Lavender, if you need a place to snag some essential oil here is where we get ours: HERE!)

1 Cup baking soda (optional)

1/3 cup of ACV (apple cider vinegar, optional)

Side notes: They recommend soaking in the bath for 15-20 mins up to 3 times per week. Also to note the ACV is for added detoxification, skin softener, rebalances skin’s pH, helps cure fungal or microbial infection. Similarly, Baking Soda has a cleansing ability, anti-fungal properties, leaves skin soft, and helps soothe irritated skin.

 

Epsom Bath are a WIN-WIN

Where relaxation mets healthy living! LOVE IT!

Here are the quantities of Epsom salt to use in your bath according to your weight:

  • Children under 60 lbs (27 Kg): ½ cup to a standard size bath
  • Individuals between 60-100 lbs (27 kg- 45 kg): 1 cup
  • Individuals between 100-150 lbs (45 kg – 68 kg): 1½ cups
  • Individuals over 150 lbs (68 kg): 2 cups

I hope this has been helpful information for you to be able to get to know this Epsom Bath craze. I know I have already fallen victim to this trend. Haha

 

 

Here is a website with a lot more information for Epsom Salt (source)

PODCAST- Wisdom Wednesday #6

We are so excited to share with you here on Wisdom Wednesday some ideas and way to serve our households better for God’s Glory! Join us as we weekly find ways to “level-up” our households.

LISTEN HERE:

We welcome you all to jump on here on Mondays for some extra motivation on how to bring more conversations around the foundational truths to our Christian faith! See you then!

How to Help Your Spouse Spiritually Lead

Hey RaisingRices community Darren and I are super excited to tackle this topic of Spiritual Leadership together, we pray you will be blessed and encouraged.

Darren and I had an amazing weekend away in Bend, just the two of us! High Five to our amazing family for blessing us by watching the kiddos (all 5 of them)! During our time away we had a great chance to engage in deep conversation, vision casting, fun, and rest.

One amazing opportunity we had was to meet up with  Isaac and Angie  Tolpin who are dedicated to full time ministry through Courageous Parenting and their local church body, and you guys this was so LIFE GIVING! One of the conversation we got to talk about together is how to support your spouse as a Spiritual Leader and How to RISE to the calling of being a Spiritual Leader.

In true gentlemen like nature we are going to do “Ladies First”

Ladies First

Here are a few helpful ways we as wives and work toward the encouragement of our husbands leading.

  1. First things first, as wives who desire for our husbands to lead, we NEED to be in PRAYER for our husbands. We need to find ourselves on our knees because the enemy of our soul knows that when men start spiritually leading CHANGE is coming! My challenge to myself and I hope you would join me is as we pray for our husbands to lead spiritually and pray for their protection against the spiritual warfare that will be coming.
  2. As a leader our husbands, can be heading into a unknown battle, the more information they have the better equipped they can be as a leader. What information can we help them with?
      • The heart status of the kids, this is helpful to know how to instruct, redirect, encourage, and guide to righteousness.
      • Any key events of the day, a quick play-by-play with room for  quick questions
      • And your (wife) emotional/spiritual state, this is important for your husband to know too
      • Lastly, we must remember that we need to give our husbands the information and then TIME FOR PRAYER AND PROCESSING. If we don’t allow them to prepare their hearts then they could be walking into the home with a “get-it-fixed” mentally instead of an “I am here to lead” mentality.
  3. As a mom and wife I will be the first to admit that I can forget that my husband has also been working all day. Ok, I know that sounds silly but when I am at home working hard as a stay-at-home momma (you know cleaning, cooking, hugging, changing poopies, schooling, laundry, kissing scraps and bruises) I can sort of forget that my husband is working hard at his job too. And when he gets home I can feel the urge to do the “handoff,” you know the please take the baby I need a break. And while this is completely fine, we are a team, I need to also realize WE ARE A TEAM BOTH WAYS! My husband needs the time to prepare himself to lead spiritually.
  4. In addition, these mentality adjustments are crucial.
    • If you want him to lead, then we as wives need to make room for him to lead. This isn’t permission to nag, or “convince”. This means to be the one who stand beside your husband, not in front.
    • Slow to speak, quick to listen. This has been my kryptonite, and I would go out on a limb to say I am not the only one out there who is quick to talk and slow to listen. One element I would encourage the wives out there to do with me is to work hard to provide wait time before speaking so that it gives our husbands a chance to share what is on their heart, and time to process. This has been a revolution to me, that in general terms, a woman will use 10 sentences to explain something where as a man uses just one, because he has processed and condescend his thoughts down to one.
    • Provide time for spiritually leading. If there are other moms and wives out there like me who “take-charge” of the calendar scheduling I would like to give another encouragement (anyone else notice these suggestions come out of life lessons). My encouragement would to be PROVIDE REST TIME, this will encourage family time, togetherness, and the ability to give a chance for spiritual leadership. When we have so much planned we neglect our most important mission: Building HouseHolds That Serve The LORD!
    • Another reminder to us all as biblical wives, that as we desire our husbands to lead our families spiritually we must also remember we must be in the WORD of GOD! Daily pursing Christ! Please know though this personal relationship is essential to our growth however it also can be intimidating to our husbands when we “appear” to have all the answers. It is hard to lead someone who, “knows it all.” Now the is a touchy issue, because I am NEVER suggesting, lying or acting dumb, (because that would just be dumb). What I am suggestion is that as a couple you ask deep thoughtful questions to purse Christ together. Questions for example like these:
      •    How do you think _______ (this bible character) feel during this _______ (bible event.)
      • Since everything in the Bible points to God and his redemptive plan through Jesus. In this passage how does this relate to Christ?
      • Would you pray for me I am struggling with this _________?

We are all on a journey in pursuit of holiness. And as our church always says, “Come as you are but leave more like Christ.” As we walk through this crazy thing call life lets remember to have grace, pray tons and work to spur each other towards righteousness.

GUYS TURN 

Men, it is our role to rise to the Biblical call to be spiritual leaders of our households. Here are some areas that I know I am growing in and I want to challenge you to assess your own habits consider your spiritual growth in these areas as well.

  1. The first step in spiritual leadership is ensuring that we are on a path of personal growth in our walk with Christ through reading the word prayer and allowing time to listen to God. It is impossible to lead on a journey that we are not willing to take.
  2. We must take seriously the Word of God as truth. Not just in knowledge but in action, in heart change, in repentance, in transformation of the way we think and act. It does us no good if we read Deuteronomy 6, where the scriptures talk about making the commands of God prevalent and constant in our households, and yet continue to go day after day allowing the business of life to overshadow the glory of God. These things, whatever they are that take time away from the discipleship of our children and leading of our wives can become Idols, taking the rightful place of God in our lives.
  3. We must love our wife as Christ loved the church. Ephesians 6 is very explicit about this. This means men that as we lead our wives spiritually we must lead them in love, and as a servant as Christ loved the church. So as we lead, we must not disregard our wife’s wisdom, concern, or emotions, but rather listen to her wisdom, or lead her gently back to scripture as needed as we shepherd her heart towards Christ.
  4. As the leader, in coordination with our Wife (who I know many, including mine, manage a lot of the calendar) WE are responsible for building and prioritizing rhythms in our household. Rhythms of studying the Word, prayer, discipleship and rest.
  5. Be open with our wives, we must be explicit in the ways we could use their support in our leadership. God made our wives to help us, but they can not help us well unless they know what we are struggling with. As the leader with an awesome helper we must communicate what we are feeling, what emotional or cultural forces are pulling us away from leading well, and how the enemy of our souls is trying to prevent us from leading.

Men it is a battle out there against the enemy of our souls, we must recognize that without spiritual leadership in our households they are vulnerable to the enemy. We must take seriously the the design of our Creator in our families and the significance of choosing what is at the head of our life.

PODCAST – Wisdom Wednesday #5

Welcome to Wisdom Wednesday! This is an opportunity for Darren and I to share some ideas and ways to help the whole household! We want to work to in all we do embrace the verse found in Joshua 24:15, where we can be encouraged to raise households that serve the LORD! Will you join us in this mission!

LISTEN HERE:

We want to also invite you to join us on Mondays as our heart is to give motivation to find want to bring into our conversation, application and discipling the foundational truths of the Christian faith! We look for to sharing our podcast with you on Monday! See you then!

PODCAST- Catechism #4 – Week #4

WELCOME! Thanks for getting into the foundation truths of our Christian walk with us on Motivational Mondays! This year we are making a BIG push and focus on answering the 52 questions found in the New City Catechism on Sundays during our Family Ministries time and we want to provide those of you also following along (or just discovering ways to get these truths into your households) ways to bring these truths into conversations around the dinner table, or practice world examples to share with the household, and or including it in your family bible time! WE WANT TO PROVIDE AND ENCOURAGE WITH THE CONVERSATION STARTERS AND MOTIVATION FOR YOU! Lets all do it together as we work on Raising Households That Serve The LORD!

LISTEN HERE: 

ALSO come hang out with us on Wednesdays as we have a short but meaningful podcast called WISDOM WEDNESDAYS! This is a great time to get some ideas that will help “LEVEL -UP” your household!

Multigenerational Impact

Multigenerational Impact

What does the Bible have to say about it?

In the Bible it says in Psalm 107:2, “Let the redeemed of the LORD say so,” does this seems like a “of course we will” verse? I hope so, however there are many historical accounts in the Bible of the lack of “say so” (sharing of who God is, what he had done, and his gift of redemption He has for us.)

Lets take a look at Judges 2:10-12 together. Before we read lets do some back story. We start the verse talking about a generation who gathered unto their fathers, this generation they are speaking of some of the people there literally SAW with their VERY OWN EYES the miracles of God from, the Works of God in Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, manna falling from heaven, and the walls of Jericho fall with the blowing of a trumpet to name a few. Then it says another generation arose after them, which knew not the Lord, commentaries suggest this doesn’t mean that they didn’t know God existed but instead in the midst of peace, prosperity intoxicated their hearts, they were focused on building their houses, land, flocks etc. Ok, with this in mind lets see the outcome:

Judges 2:10-12 King James Version (KJV)

10 And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the Lord, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel.

11 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served Baalim:

12 And they forsook the Lord God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the people that were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the Lord to anger.

What stands out to me, is the devastating effects of the lack of intentionally. Verse 10 says, “and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the Lord, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel.” When I read this I think about the importance of not assuming that my faith will be my children’s faith. I can not pass the knowledge of GOD to my children without INTENTIONAL teaching, training, and making my relationship with God visual and REAL to my children. In the course of just ONE GENERATION the chosen people turned from their faith and focused more on their comfort, their possessions, their agenda. 

A Generation rose up who knew NOTHING and were led astray by the culture around them!

To say that  multi-generational impact is not of value is an  UNDERSTATEMENT!!!

Psalm 78:5 King James Version (KJV)

For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children. That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children. That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments.And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation; a generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not stedfast with God.

What does Science have to say about it?

One of the elements we must not forget is that Science points toward God. God made Science! One of the reasons the younger generation is leaving the church is because they don’t see the connection of science to God. SOOOOO lets make sure we talk about it!

Here are a few ways we can see how significant Multi-Generational Impact is for ALL in the HOUSEHOLD!

  • Healthy people living in two-generation households have longer survival than healthy people living on their own.
  • Grandparents serve as role models for their grandchildren through daily interactions, while grandchildren learn to respect and connect with their elders.
  • The U.S. Census Bureau says 10% of children under 18 are growing up with a grandparent in the house. This may be a good thing. A 2008 University of Oxford study among 1,500 teens in England and Wales found that those with a high level of involvement with their grandparents had fewer emotional and behavioral problems. (Source)
  • Being with grandchildren lower the risk for Alzheimers (source) Also helps with working memory (source)
  • Financial benefits and a increased in numbers of families living in multigenerational households. (source)

How can this personally affect my Legacy?

I once heard some friends talk about the Multi-Generational Impact they desire to have, I was taken off guard from there vision until they explained. I know you are dying to know the story but I am going to make you wait one second so I can introduce you to this amazing couple. Isaac and Angie Tolpin have an incredible ministry called Courageous Parenting, where they provide parenting mentorship programs, podcast, bogs, all with the goal of how to equip confident Christian kids in an uncertain world. (AMAZING RIGHT!)

On the Courageous Parenting Podcast Isaac, said his vision is to see and influence 100 Tolpins in his lifetime! I was totally taken back I couldn’t imagine 100 Rices running around! But the point he went on to explain is he wasn’t planning on have 100 kids personally he was planning on leaving a Legacy through his kids of God’s salvation plan for each of their lives. AMEN TO THAT!!! I want that kind of Legacy! So those that know me know I needed to visual see that that would look like, and if it was possible, I mean 100 is a lot of people!

(Yes I am that person that had to make a chart to see! Haha!)

Of course, this is not a requirement to have these many children or to have this  100 number as a indicator of fulfillment of Legacy. And hear me when I say that children are a blessing, and I pray my children learn this truth too, and that they hear from me there is not expectation to number of children in their future. BUT what I think it provides is is a BEAUTIFUL picture of potential IMPACT! This is a mindset of great commission work ahead, a mindset of discipleship and a mindset of intentionality in relationships.

The Battle is Multi-Generational we are meant to do this thing called discipleship together. Maybe you don’t have biblical generational influence in your family, I want to encourage you today that intentional mentors can be like “family.” The Bible calls us in Titus 2 to be mentoring those younger then us, this is to be an encouragement to seek out wise generational influences to mentor us, while we also receive the encouragement to mentor those who are younger than us.

 

Additional Bible verses on Generational Impact (there are TONS more too!)

  1. Genesis 17.7: And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you.
  2. Exodus 3.15: God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.
  3. Exodus 12.14: This day shall be for you a memorial day, and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD; throughout your generations, as a statute forever, you shall keep it as a feast.
  4. Leviticus 23.43: …that your generations may know that I made the people of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.
  5. Psalm 78.5-6: He decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children.
  6. Luke 1.48: [Mary] …for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
  7. Ephesians 3.20-21: Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever.

 

 

 

 

PODCAST – Wisdom Wednesday Week #4

Hey RaisingRices community we are so glad to be with you today as we dive into a way to “level-up” our households on Wisdom Wednesday! We are passionate about embracing the verse Josh 24:15 as we daily work on raising households that serve the LORD!

LISTEN HERE:

MAKE SURE YOU STOP BACK BY ON MONDAY!!!! Motivational Monday! This is a time where we dive into the truths of the Christian Faith, the FOUNDATIONAL TRUTHS!!!! We find ways to get the truth into our conversations and practices throughout the week!!! See You then!!!!

PODCAST- Week #3 Catechism- Question #3

Motivation Monday!

Join us as Darren and I talk through 52 Catechisms of the Christian faith, and how we can encourage families to be talking about and living out the truths of the WORD of GOD!

We desire that within our households we would be talking about these foundational truths as we walk, talk, lay-down, rise-up, in ALL areas of our lives!  So we want to provide you with resources and ideas of those conversations and applications. Listen in, we pray you will be inspired to raise households that serve the LORD!

LISTEN HERE:

Make sure to join us on Wisdom Wednesday as we give tips and tricks to LEVEL up your family!

Discernment and Brownies

Discernment and Brownies

The word discernment has been on my mind, heart, and lips a lot recently as I have been encouraging those around me and are teaching my kids about this KEY element to our daily lives. I used to believe that discernment meant just being wise and not letting others persuade me with things that are obviously not of God. The Dictionary simply states, “the ability to judge well.” HOWEVER, there is nothing simple about discernment.

One thing I think we forget (and is imperative to teach our kids about), is that when is comes to the need for discernment usually it is because something seems like it could be right.

Let’s think back to the Garden Eden way back in Genesis. What did satan say to tempt Eve? Lets look:

Genesis 3:1-6

The Fall of Man

      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, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but 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.’” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So 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, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.

Did satan just come straight out and say to Eve, “Go on, eat it!”? NO! Why? Because that would be obvious, and Eve would have sniffed that temptation right out with ease. The first step in her deception was the DISTORTING of God’s word. See instead of saying, “Go on, just eat it,” his first step was to have her question the truthfulness of God’s word, to question HIS authority! God is the SOLE AUTHORITY for our lives, but how often is the are we encouraged to disregard Him as the one TRUE God all in the name of moral relativism (what is true for you, is not true for me). Instead of Satan saying, “Go on, eat it,” he says, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” A question to Eve, a question to make her discredit the Authority of GOD! Questioning truth! 

How did Eve respond? She said, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but 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.’” You know what comes next right? Satan says, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Is this statement true? Well contains a degree of truth, but is NOT all true.

This is half truth because it is a COMPLETE MISREPRESENTATION of what God had said. The truth part was that by eating the apple in temptation their eyes would be “opened,” in Genesis 3:22

22 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—”

But there eyes were not opened to what they had thought, and they didn’t “die” in the human sense but in the spiritual sense, to say the died is an understatement, for the were separated from the presence of God. What they decided in the temptation of satan is that they want to be their own God, they want to make their own rules, basically we can see the first of beginning of idolatry.

Jumping back to where satan says, “You will not surely die” we can see a direct rejection of consequences. This reminds me of a common statement that is so frequently used in our current age that seems like truth but is a misrepresentation (aka a FALSE statement), “My god wouldn’t send people to hell.” We don’t live in a merit system: if we do good then we will we go to Heaven , if we are a bad person we will go to hell. And praise God because we are all sinful people, born that way, in need of a Savior! Jesus Christ! Furthermore, if we didn’t have a God who gives a consequence of judgement due to absolute truth found in the Bible, then whose standard do we “pick” for what is right and wrong? Do you see how without law, judgement, consequences it could get REALLY messy REALLY fast! In addition without our acknowledgment of our sin, and need for sacrifice Jesus would have never needed to die for our salvation, and if he never came and died for us out of the God’s love then we would never get to enjoy the relationship. AND without that relationship we would be left to deal with satan’s temptations without: the Holy Spirit, the WORD of GOD and prayer!

So what does this have to do with discernment? Everything! WE NEED DISCERNMENT so we do not fall temptation to satan’s schemes.

I would like to tell you a story that has been a GREAT way to teach kids (and myself) about the need for discernment and how satan operates.

Discernment Brownies!

One day my neighbor said she had some brownies she wanted to share with me. When she stopped by I saw the brownies, and MAN OH MAN they looks so good!!!! Plus, I have heard of my neighbors FAMOUS BROWNIES, everyone was making them and sharing them with others and now it was MY TURN! They looked to die for! She brought them over all displayed beautifully on a colorful plate, cut in perfect square bite size pieces, I began to just imagine their taste, texture and sweetness! We sat down at the table to enjoy the brownies. But before I took I bite I thought to myself I should ask what is in the brownies. I asked my friend, “I must know, what is in your famous brownies?” She replied, “Oh just the normal ingredients like: sugar, coco powder, butter, chocolate chips, eggs, pure vanilla extract, and poop.” I said, “WAIT WHAT!? Poop!?” She calmly responded, “it is only a spoonful, not a big deal, everyone is eating them, they love them!”

  • This is where I stop my story and turn to my kids and ask, would you eat the brownies? Thankfully every time they have said, “NOOOOOOOO!!!!” (sorry ahead of time if your kids say yes, I don’t know what I would say in response hahah, maybe something to do with GROSS!!!!!)
  • I love the follow up questions, WHY? Why do you choose not to eat the brownies? “Because mom that is gross, they have poop in it!” I gently remind them it is only a spoonful, a small amount. At this point I am able to go into a deeper conversation where we get to go over how temptation is most the time wrapped in “good” things. And discernment is needed because a lie usually has the truth wrapped in it too.
  • Lastly, I we talk about how if someone was trying to get you to do something wrong, do you think they would come out and just hand you poop to eat or do you think it would be baked into something good like brownies?

ACTUALLY “SINLESS” BROWNIES

One of my favorite things about this life lesson that I get to teach my kids to then ACTUALLY make brownies and enjoy the poop-free “sinless” ones! Recipe below:

Ingredients:

1 cup of Butter

1 cup of Unsweetened Chocolate

1/4 cup of Unsweetened Cocoa Powder

2 cups of Sugar

1 Tablespoon of Vanialla

4 Eggs

1-1/4 Flour

3/4 cups Milk Chocolate Chips

Directions:

    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
    • In saucepan, Melt butter with unsweetened choclate over low heat, until smooth and melted. whisk in cocoa powder. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes.
    • Stir in sugar and vanilla until combined
    • Stir in one egg at a time
    • Stir in flour until halfway incorporated. Add milk chocolate chips and stir just until combined. IT WILL BE THICK!
    • Pour Batter into greased 9 x 13 pan
    • Bake for 40 minutes
    • Allow to cool completely, this is when the brownie sets up best
    • Optional: Serve with Vanilla Ice Cream

This receipe is “sinless” but not sugar-less, calorie-less, or fat-less, Enjoy!

%d bloggers like this: