God’s timing is always perfect, right? I am living in that this morning.
I am also living in the thought of how we can bless others with everything we have, material possession, our prayers, kind words, encouragement. We never know what a person needs until the Lord prompts us to do it, right?
Such as the lonely older man next door who need a visit and a plate of cookies. Not much but a little time, flour, and sugar. And yet to him, it makes his day, his week, possibly even his holidays that he is spending alone for the first time in years.
For the family who finds themselves without full time work, with three hungry small children always asking for a snack, a quick trip to the grocery or pantry, a box made up, and an invitation to Thanksgiving Dinner eases their grief and stress at their circumstances, even for a short time.
For the newly-single woman, alone for her first holiday without the husband who chose to walk away, conversation, a place to stay, some items for her new apartment that dont hold memories along with them, and the phone calls and coffee that the Lord uses to bring her closer to your family, can be just the blessing that she needs to remember how much the Lord loves her and cherishes her, no matter what someone else said or did.
Those are just a few examples of what we can do.
The opportunity to give of ourselves, which is far more important than a sterile check or cash (which is of course still very needed by many people) is my challenge to you this week before Thanksgiving and as we head into the blessed holiday of Christmas.
I want to tell you how God has used different people to bless me in the last month,
and show you that we all need it sometimes.
Â For when you are blessed, you want to give again and again and again, passing it on.
This month I had a friend contact me about jars and ask me if I would like 12 dozen very nice jars for around $40. We agreed and those jars are in my kitchen. now, could she have sold them elsewhere and probably have gotten more money out of them? Yes, but they were her mother’s, and she wanted to find someone who would use them.
What a blessing to this busy mamma of three little girls who are always hungry!
Next I had someone pull me aside in church and ask if I wanted more jars for free. I was stunned, and thankful, and said yes. Those jars came two days ago. Boxes and boxes of jars. Quarts. Pints. etc. And along with them came a 7 Qt Pressure canner, used only last year, from a grandma who decided to give it up as they move off the farm. And as I gave the gentleman a cookie fresh from the oven, he smiled and said “God bless you and thanks!”. No really, thank YOU. Again and again and again.
Then the next day the doorbell rang, the delivery guy walks in the door, and places in my arms a brand new FoodSaver, complete with extra rolls, and addressed to me. A dear friend, who I have known a while through the canning for Christians group, decided I needed to have one of the machines I have wanted for a year, but simply could not afford. So she surprised me with it.
Surprise is such a small word for how I feel.
And for this “wordy” woman who can always seem to come up with some way to explain how she is feeling, I simply cant. I have no words. My heart is overflowing, and I simply wish she could be here so I could hug her, and she could see by my face and eyes how incredibly thankful I am.
My husband and I fell to our knees that night and blessed the Lord for people such as this person, and the others. Through them, He enables us to keep feeding our family, keep doing what we do, and expand it as we need.
So I want to ask you, from a small thing to a big thing, who can you bless today, right now, in some way? Whether with your time, something you own you have no use for but they would love, or even something big that can make a big difference in their life? Mine has been forever touched by the many people who took time to pour into it, and if it were not for those people, and the Lord constantly pouring into me, I could not write The Welcoming House.
Since we are heading into Thanksgiving weekend, I wanted to share with many of you the Welcoming House Farmer Bread/Rolls recipe. This is the traditional bread I grew up, and you CAN make it with all white bread flour, just change the recipe to reflect that and add a little more flour. I personally use freshly ground wheat that is ground in my WonderMill from theÂ Grain Mill Wagon Company
(another amazing gift that I can chalk up to the hand of the Lord this year)
The Welcoming House Farmer Bread and Rolls Recipe
In a mixing bowl place 2 1/2 cups warm water.
Add 2 Tbs yeast, 2/3 cup shortening or coconut oil, 2 eggs, 3/4 cup dark brown sugar or sucanat. Let this sit for a couple minutes, then mix together. To this add 6-7 cups of freshly ground whole wheat flour, mix in well, then let sit for ten minutes for the flour to absorb the moisture. Add 1 tsp salt, and then knead for ten minutes until elastic and moist. Turn out onto a floured board, cover, and let double in size. Cut into three even sections, and make into loaves of bread dough. I roll them into logs, slash with a knife, and then place into greased bread pans. Let them rise and double again, then place in the oven for 30 minutes at 350*.
To form different kinds of rolls, here is what we have done in the past:
Use a greasedÂ muffin tin for the rolls.
Take a “loaf” of bread dough, and cut into12 even pieces. I just keep dividing in half to get even pieces. Then take each piece and cut into three pieces, roll into balls, and push gently into the muffin tin space. Let rise, and bake. These take about 15 minutes, whole wheat ones, at 350*
“Turkey Tail” rolls
Take a “loaf” of bread dough and cut into 16 even pieces. Take four pieces and even them out into squares, then stack them on top of each other. Taking a sharp knife, cut each stack into 3 slices, then gently form into rolls leaving the tops to fan out over the muffin tin top. You must watch these as they will burn if left alone for too long. We tease the kids and tell them these are the “turkey tails”–gotta eat the whole bird after all, right? 🙂
Simple Farmer Rolls
Take a “loaf” of dough and cut it into 12 even pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball, and pinch the bottom to fit into the muffin tin. It will look similar to a small mini mushroom. wait until they are half risen and gently mist with water, sprinkle with salt and toasted sesame seeds, minced onion and poppy seeds, whatever appeals to your family. Otherwise leave them alone and brush with butter when they come out of the oven. They bake for about 20 minutes at 350*, and will sound hollow when thumped on the top.
Have a wonderful weekend, and be right back here on Monday as we begin our countdown to Thanksgiving–I will be sharing table decorations, many more recipes, and more words of our monthly Attitude of Gratitude Challenge. Here are mine today:
God bless you all!
What are YOUR words today?
Many Blessings to you and yours,