Sunday, November 4, 2012

Sunday Psalter

Let Us Sing Songs of Praise

95 Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
    let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
    let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
For the Lord is a great God,
    and a great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth;
    the heights of the mountains are his also.
The sea is his, for he made it,
    and his hands formed the dry land.
Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
    let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
For he is our God,
    and we are the people of his pasture,
    and the sheep of his hand.
Today, if you hear his voice,
    do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah,
    as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
when your fathers put me to the test
    and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.
10 For forty years I loathed that generation
    and said, “They are a people who go astray in their heart,
    and they have not known my ways.”
11 Therefore I swore in my wrath,
    “They shall not enter my rest.”

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday Psalter

The Lord Will Not Forsake His People

94 Lord, God of vengeance,
    O God of vengeance, shine forth!
Rise up, O judge of the earth;
    repay to the proud what they deserve!
Lordhow long shall the wicked,
    how long shall the wicked exult?
They pour out their arrogant words;
    all the evildoers boast.
They crush your people, O Lord,
    and afflict your heritage.
They kill the widow and the sojourner,
    and murder the fatherless;
and they say, “The Lord does not see;
    the God of Jacob does not perceive.”
Understand, O dullest of the people!
    Fools, when will you be wise?
He who planted the ear, does he not hear?
He who formed the eye, does he not see?
10 He who disciplines the nations, does he not rebuke?
He who teaches man knowledge—
11     the Lord—knows the thoughts of man,
    that they are but a breath.[a]
12 Blessed is the man whom you discipline, O Lord,
    and whom you teach out of your law,
13 to give him rest from days of trouble,
    until a pit is dug for the wicked.
14 For the Lord will not forsake his people;
    he will not abandon his heritage;
15 for justice will return to the righteous,
    and all the upright in heart will follow it.
16 Who rises up for me against the wicked?
    Who stands up for me against evildoers?
17 If the Lord had not been my help,
    my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence.
18 When I thought, “My foot slips,”
    your steadfast love, O Lordheld me up.
19 When the cares of my heart are many,
    your consolations cheer my soul.
20 Can wicked rulers be allied with you,
    those who frame injustice by statute?
21 They band together against the life of the righteous
    and condemn the innocent to death.[b]
22 But the Lord has become my stronghold,
    and my God the rock of my refuge.
23 He will bring back on them their iniquity
    and wipe them out for their wickedness;
    the Lord our God will wipe them out.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thoughts for Thursday

Short thought for today:

"This is the role of writers: to turn their tears into a story — and perhaps into a prayer." —Elie Wiesel

What story are your tears telling? What prayers are you praying?

"You think about that."
(stole that from our friend, Steve Brown)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Sunday Psalter

The Lord Reigns

93 The Lord reigns; he is robed in majesty;
    the Lord is robed; he has put on strength as his belt.
Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved.
Your throne is established from of old;
    you are from everlasting.
The floods have lifted up, O Lord,
    the floods have lifted up their voice;
    the floods lift up their roaring.
Mightier than the thunders of many waters,
    mightier than the waves of the sea,
    the Lord on high is mighty!
Your decrees are very trustworthy;
    holiness befits your house,
    Lord, forevermore.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Thoughts for Thursday

Each Thursday, a quote that has some kind of meaning to me will be posted here on OCF. In light of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day on Oct. 15, I decided to share this Nouwen quote. 

"When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares."   -Henri Nouwen

In our own grief journey, those in our community who have been able to sit with us in our pain without explaining it away or sprinkling it with Jesus dust in the name of "encouragement" have been such a blessing to us. I challenge you to consider which kind of person you are (and which kind of person you want to be), with those in your life that are experiencing trials or periods of suffering. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Homemade Yogurt

If you look on the right sidebar of this little blog, you'll see that I'm just a crunchy girl...powered by the love of Jesus and homemade yogurt. 

One of my lovely readers asked me about making homemade yogurt. (Hi Rachel!) I've tried it probably 5 different ways over the last year or so. Commercial milk, raw milk, different starters, different incubators, different recipes, the list goes on and on. 

 My suggestions for anyone wanting to make homemade yogurt is to experiment, experiment, experiment. If one way didn't work, try another! Don't give up on your homemade yogurt. It is WORTH the effort. You can save around $600 PER YEAR making it at home, people. 

I tried it this way.  This post has a great rationale for why to make yogurt at home. Thanks, Katie!
My cooler did not stay hot enough, and I ended up with runny warm milk. Fail. This works great for some people, just not me. Gotta do what works.  

I have a microwave over my cooktop in my kitchen, equipped with a light that illuminates the stovetop. I realized one day that when the light is on, inside the microwave gets super hot. INCUBATOR! This is how I incubated my yogurt before I had my Excalibur. (I'll explain the joys of this appliance later) If you have this set up, give it a try. 

Then I tried it this way.
I had some real success with this one, and also some real failures. Once I ended up with think yogurt, but it had a...snotty consistency. (please excuse me for the use of the word "snotty") Not appetizing. 

And THEN I tried it this way.  (Cue the Hallelujah Chorus)
Major success. Every time. I think her explanation for why you NEED to cook the milk to 180 degrees makes a lot of sense. Gotta change the protein structures of that milk, but not so much that your body doesn't recognize it a la ultra pasteurized (read: dead) milk. 

Give it a try, let me know what works for you. Good luck!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sunday Psalter

We're starting a new series here on OCF, the Sunday Psalter. Each Sunday, I'll post the Psalm we read in that week's City Bible Reading.  I may highlight certain parts that stuck out to me or make some comments on the passage, I may not, (that's the cool thing about having your own can do whatever you want). Our first Psalm is Psalm 92- so fitting for the first ever Sunday Psalter.

CBR is a Bible reading initiative from New City to read through the Scriptures as a church. We desire to journal, discuss and live out publicly what we've processed privately. You can read more about CBR journaling here.

How Great Are Your Works

A Psalm. A Song for the Sabbath.

92 It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
    to sing praises to your name, O Most High;
to declare your steadfast love in the morning,
    and your faithfulness by night,
to the music of the lute and the harp,
    to the melody of the lyre.
For you, O Lord, have made me glad by your work;
    at the works of your hands I sing for joy.
How great are your works, O Lord!
    Your thoughts are very deep!
The stupid man cannot know;
    the fool cannot understand this:
that though the wicked sprout like grass
    and all evildoers flourish,
they are doomed to destruction forever;
    but you, O Lord, are on high forever.
For behold, your enemies, O Lord,
    for behold, your enemies shall perish;
    all evildoers shall be scattered.
10 But you have exalted my horn like that of the wild ox;
    you have poured over me[a] fresh oil.
11 My eyes have seen the downfall of my enemies;
    my ears have heard the doom of my evil assailants.
12 The righteous flourish like the palm tree
    and grow like a cedar in Lebanon.
13 They are planted in the house of the Lord;
    they flourish in the courts of our God.
14 They still bear fruit in old age;
    they are ever full of sap and green,
15 to declare that the Lord is upright;
    he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.