Friday, June 06, 2008

Summer challenges

I've been chiding my son for not posting in his blog (encouraging him to just journal this way so we know how to pray for him more specifically as he is in Kathmandu, Nepal), and thought best to take my own advice and just jot down a few thoughts of my own. I'm going to try and do this on a more regular basis. This challenge will be good for me...I think.

Right now I'm a bit envious of my friend Ann who is beginning her six week mission trip in Africa. She answered God's call to travel to Gulu, Uganda to be a part of a team sent with a project called Invisible Children. She just posted her journal of the first few days of this great adventure she is blessed to be a part of and it was so good to hear what has happened so far. I so appreciated her honesty and willingness to share as she did, because not all has been smooth sailing. As I read her journal I could almost hear her speaking and her comments brought back vivid memories of the time my husband and I went to visit our daughter while she was serving the Lord in Calcutta, India. It made me wish I had a "traveling to another country" type adventure to look forward to this summer. Oh well..

Ann's comments on the extreme poverty she witnessed reminded me of how overwhelmed and heartbroken I was when we first arrived in Calcutta viewed similar circumstances along the streets in that country. I remember how very, very small and helpless I felt in this world where there is so much suffering. It took only moments to give proper perspective to our life in this country.

However, instead of traveling to a foreign country, my adventure is limited to being home and working through my own faith struggle; believing that the Lord is who He says He is and that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Heb.11:6 Pleasing Him is that simple and is what I want to do at this moment. I pray that this struggle of believing God and wanting to please Him isn't just self serving, that I will be open and to answering His call to serve Him by serving my community as opportunity arises. This is "The great adventure" isn't it; being ready and willing to answer His call regardless of what it is? Time will tell...

In earlier posts I've inserted a favorite recipe from my kitchen and will once again continue that practice with each post. Today it's Carrot Cake today, just because....

Carrot Cake
1 ½ Cups Vegetable Oil (or 1 Cup oil + 1/2 Cup applesause)
2 Cups Sugar
4 Large eggs
2 Cups Flour
2 tsp. Cinnamon
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Salt
1 Cup Raisins
3 Cups Grated Carrots
1 Cup Chopped Nuts
1 Small can Crushed Pineapple (unsweetened)

1 8oz. package Cream Cheese (softened)
½ Stick Butter or Margarine
1 tsp. Vanilla
3-4 Cups Powdered Sugar

Cream together sugar, oil, and eggs.
Add carrots, pineapple, nuts and raisins.
Add salt, baking powder, and cinnamon.
Add flour and mix well. Pour batter into a well greased 9x13 baking pan and bake 50-55 minutes @ 350°. Insert knife into center of cake to check doneness. Frost when completely cooled.