Tag Archive | wisdom

4 Easy Steps: Banana Muffins Even Toddlers Can Bake

Banana Muffins Even Toddlers Can Bake

“Baking is how you start kids at cooking in the kitchen. It’s fun whether it’s baking bread or cookies. With baking, you have to be exact when it comes to ingredients.” ~Sandra Lee

My daughter is now three years old and she loves spending time with me. One of the activities she enjoys doing with me, of course, aside from playing, is baking. I would like to share with you a photo of my little moppet and I while baking.

Joanna & I baking

Joanna is in charge of mixing up the dry ingredients and I mix up the wet ones. She’s one little happy baker.

Writing out this first-ever recipe that she has tried is worth-doing. Maybe some moms would agree with me so here is the recipe that we have customized.

Ingredients: 

1 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
3/4 sugar
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp custard powder (optional)
1/2 tbsp cinnamon powder
1/3 cup of oil
1 large egg
3 big bananas or 6 small ones

Instructions:
1. Mix up all the dry ingredients.
2. Mix up all wet ingredients (whisked egg, mashed bananas and oil).
3. Scoop them up into the muffin tray.
4. Pre-heat the oven and set  it up to 190°C (375 °F).  Bake for 12 minutes.

Now, you can either print this recipe out or get a pen and recipe card and jot down this simple recipe. Please try it with your toddler. 🙂 I promise that this will be such a fulfilling experience not only for you, but most especially for your toddler who enjoys adventure at this stage.

What activities do you enjoy with your toddler? Please share it with me so my daughter and I can try it as well. Thanks in advance! 🙂

Banana Muffins

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7 Practical Lessons and Caveats from the Book of Judges

7 Practical Lessons and Caveats from the Book of Judges
If I were to be asked about my favorite Bible book–one of the last books I would answer is the Book of Judges. That was prior to my in-depth study of this book.

What is the Book of Judges all about anyway? It’s a book filled with stories of how God called and raised up judges for the apple of His eye–Israel. 

As I read this narration of Israel’s history in this particular book, I realized how God’s peculiar people lived a cycle of repentance-sinful-living-repentance-type of lifestyle. 

Again, I realized, we are no different from them! We have the same sinful human nature as the people of Israel and so reminders are necessary to help us maintain a consistent walk with God. 

Now, what did I learn from the book which I thought would be one of the books I like the least in the Bible?

First, idols can make anyone forget God’s word and godly moral values.  (Judges 2:11-12)

This is a cue for me personally.

Whenever I find myself prioritizing something or someone over my personal study of His Word, then I recognize it/him/her an idol.

Whenever I fail to obey God’s will because of anyone or anything, I consider it or him an idol.

Needless to say, whenever I find myself in that situation, I confess it to the LORD and find His same faithful forgiveness of my sin (1 John 1:9). Praise His name!

Second, God allows us to be enslaved by our enemies and “idols” when He sees unrepentant attitude in us. (Judges 3:12-14)

King Eglon ruled and controlled Israel for eighteen years! It’s all because God was disrespected by their worship of Baal and Ashteroth–two prominent idols of Israel in that period (Joshua 3:7).

This part of Israel’s history was not included in the canon of the Bible in vain. This is written for us to learn from the past. This is written to remind and warn us. 🙂

If we want to live a victorious life, God is calling us to love and serve Him with all our hearts and forsake idolatry. Here’s a detailed antidote to idolatry.

Third, God gives victory to those who love, trust, and obey Him. (Judges 4-5)

You might be familiar with the story of how Deborah, the only woman judge in Israel, courageously delivered her people from the hands of their enemies. She knew that Barak was supposed to lead them in fighting. Since he was hesitant to do so, Barak forfeited the honor of leading Israel’s victory. Instead, God gave victory to Israel through Deborah’s valorous leadership.

Fourth, peace is the mere fruit of obedience to God’s word. (Judges 5:31)

When Deborah led Israel, they “experienced 40 undisturbed years.”

Here’s a practical application for us: if we want a peaceful nation, we need leaders who will be brave enough to take a righteous stand in leading his people–someone who is not afraid to offend those who are disobeying God’s revealed standards of living.

Let’s pray for God to raise leaders who have such a reverence in Him that they will not be in favor of what God calls detestable.

Fifth, when God calls us to do His will, He gives  us His promise of presence and peace.

When Gideon saw that he was the angel of the Lord, he said, ‘Alas, O Lord God! For now I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face.’ The Lord said to him, ‘Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.’ Then Gideon built an altar there to the Lord and named it The Lord is Peace. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.” Judges 6:22-24 (NASB)

Sixth, it’s but natural to doubt God’s calling to serve Him but He is more than willing to prove and manifest His omnipotence. Yes, despite our fears and weaknesses! (Judges 6:37-40)

Who is our example in this passage? Yes, it’s Gideon. God encouraged Gideon to trust Him by granting his request to show signs.

Seventh, God sometimes commands us to follow a seemingly awful battle plan so He can get the glory when we obey Him. (Judges 7:7)

Do you remember how Gideon and his 300 men conquered the Midianites–their enemies? Yes, with trumpets and pitchers. Please don’t smirk. That’s how they won simply because they trusted God’s wise battle plan.

You see?

Trust God's Wisdom

Isn’t it a glorious thing to see victory led by God? We, believers, must fight our battles, not by might or swords but by faith in God’s Word!

There are many other lessons I have learned from the book of Judges but I guess the ones I wrote above are the ones time has permitted me to do so.

What are the lessons that you have been learning from your Bible meditation time? Share them with us. We will love to be blessed and challenged by what God has been teaching you as well.

It’s my prayer that God would continue to glorify His name in our lives as we live for Him, bearing His word in our hearts and mind.

It’s Never Wrong to Learn Wisdom on April Fool’s Day

It’s April Fool’s Day! I believe that many pranksters are bursting into laughter after seeing their friends’ reaction about their Facebook posts or any form of mischief.

Well it’s never wrong to make pranks once in a while. Laughing is good for the heart anyway. 😉

While many are getting fooled, I thought that it’s never wrong to learn wisdom on April Fool’s Day.

Who doesn’t like to be wise? Everyone does!

Now, where can we learn wisdom? Many people learn it from experience while many learn it from reading books.

I am sure that one of the exigent situations one can have is being faced with a tough decision to make. But what do we need to do to make a prudent decision? I am persuaded that you know the answer–yes, it’s the Bible.

Here are the common factors where we tend to base our decisions on–people’s opinion, circumstances, feelings.

What’s the problem with the said factors though? You are absolutely right! They all change!

I didn’t intend to discourage you if you, just like me, tend to make some of your decisions on the things I mentioned. I am writing this to give you hope that we can make decisions by doing the following:

1. Ask God to give wisdom.

“But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” James 1:5

Here’s the good news! God gives wisdom to those who request him to do so and He does in a generous way. Not only that. He also munificently provides wisdom without reproach (i.e without mocking and disapproval).

2. Seek godly counsels.

“Without counsel, purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.” Proverbs 15:22

Many of the prudent people I know did not make wise choices because they are naturally prudent. Most of them have sought the wise counsels of the godly authorities they have.

Now, who are the qualified people who can give us godly counsels? Those who have set a good example of wise choices in the past. They can be our pastors, our parents or our godly friends who earnestly seek God’s will in His word everyday.

3. Follow God’s leading.

As God shows you His will through His Word, godly counsels and through the leading of the Holy Spirit, do your part and leave everything in God’s hands. His will may not be as pleasant as our own choice but we have to trust God’s best.

If He asks you to wait, wait. If He asks you to do it, do it now. If He shows you that it’s not His best for you, surrender.

Here’s a familiar verse you can print out and post on your fridge to remind you to trust His leading in your life.

Trust His choice for you!

Trust His choice for you!

That’s it for now. I did not mean to make your day so serious today but as I said, it’s never wrong to learn wisdom on April Fool’s Day.

My Late Father’s Legacy of Wisdom

March 22, 2015 marks the twelfth death anniversary of my father–Philippine Marines Sgt. Major Rafael Rodrigo de Sagun.

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Papang–that’s how we used to call our father.

All I can remember about him was his being a man of few words. Needless to say, he was creative, strict, smart, disciplined, selfless and most of all, a loving father. He was a teacher in and out our home. I have memories of him teaching us sundry life skills–riding a bike, playing volleyball, observing good manners, cooking and even sewing. My mother did teach us many skills too but I am pretty sure that people who know my father well would agree that  he was exceptional among other fathers.

His Words of Wisdom

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As he aged, he suffered from many health issues which led to complications. He had bleeding ulcer, went through a surgery after having an inflamed gall bladder. He also had diabetes and high blood pressure. I cannot recall the precise number of the medicines he had to take but I knew it was a lot. His physical condition might have influenced his behavior.

Despite his physical sufferings, he struggled with life by faith. He remained supportive to us. He was not perfect. More often than not, people mistook his strictness as spitefulness.

I, as one of his children, understood well that his intentions were purely out of a desire to do things right as much as possible.

Yes, it’s been twelve years since my father passed away and I am writing this to share with you the words of wisdom that will remain inculcated in my heart:

  • “The sun doesn’t always shine brightly.”–There are days when we feasted on French fries, burger, pasta, and fried chicken and there were also days when we had to eat dried fish and rice or sometimes just rice and salt. He used to remind us that what’s on our table should not stop us from being thankful.

  • “Who are they?”–Other kids would bully you; that’s inevitable. They would criticize you, misjudge you, talk about you but who cares anyway? Their judgement would not make you less of a human. Go on and live your life. Remember how Jesus prayed for his enemies since they did not know what they were doing.

  • “Start and end your day with thankfulness”-After getting up or before going to sleep, he used to remind us to offer prayers of thanksgiving and prayers for our family, relatives and friends.

  • “Study hard so you can buy whatever you’d like to eat in the future.”–it’s self-explanatory. Hard work pays off. Most of the people who suffer financially suffer not because they don’t have a good fate. It’s sometimes a result of their inability to value their studies when they were students.

There are many other words of wisdom that my father taught us but I don’t want to take too much of your time reading. I hope though that I can teach those I mentioned above to my daughter, Joanna, as well.

My father may not have left us a big amount of money, a vast land and luxurious cars but he left us these legacy of wisdom which we can pass on to our next generation.

His Salvation Testimony

My father has passed away, but I am confident that he is with God the Father in heaven–it was not because of his righteous life. As I said, he was not perfect just like every one of us. I am confident that he is with the Father in heaven at the moment because two weeks before his death, right in front of me, he professed faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and accepted him in his heart that he’s the One and Only Savior of the world and of him personally. He did that while he was bedridden. He went to heaven because he learned from the Bible that religion, good works and anything he has done would NOT save him from the punishment of sin in hell. He accepted that Christ’s death on the cross paid his sins fully–that’s it.

“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” Matthew 8:36

Here’s the sad news my friend, you can have all the treasures of this world, and still remain unsure whether you can go to heaven or not when you die. Here’s the good news though, you can know how to get to heaven. 

“These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” I John 5:13

Now, would you like to be sure of heaven before you die? Kindly check this one out. You can also read my personal testimony on how I became sure of heaven here.

If you have accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, then remember to thank God for His gift of salvation.

To you my friend who haven’t made a decision to accept the gift of salvation by accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, please don’t ignore this message. Life is uncertain and so is death. Be sure of heaven.

Love,
Nance