But, Jesus.

Being ignored hurts. Knowing someone is harboring bitterness, anger, and resentment towards you hurts. Feeling like there’s nothing you can do to mend the brokenness in a relationship that you have cherished your whole life hurts. It may be something you caused and have asked forgiveness for, it may be a big misunderstanding, or it could be circumstances that were out of your control. But see, that’s where the two words that can change your entire life come in…

But, Jesus.

For my language-arts-teaching husband, that’s probably not even considered a complete sentence. But, when you understand what it means, all the grammatical rules you’ve ever learned go out the window. You see, we don’t deserve anything. The Bible tells us that apart from Jesus, there is no good thing (Psalm 16:2). We definitely don’t deserve forgiveness from our sins, we don’t deserve the free gift of salvation, and we don’t deserve the selflessness of God to send His only Son to die in our place.

But, Jesus.

He doesn’t see us as undeserving. He looks at us with eyes of love. He sees us as His treasure and He cares about our hurt (1 Peter 5:7). When we feel the hurt that brokenness brings, we can’t handle it with grace on our own. We can’t forgive. We aren’t able to move past it at all, actually. But, Jesus can. He will. He has. He is able. 

You see, when we try and handle hurt on our own, all the ugly comes out. The this-isn’t-fair mentality, the my-feelings-are-hurt whining, the revenge-will-make-me-feel-better and the they-deserve-the-cold-shoulder response… it’s all so, so dangerous. Because, you see, friend… as a child of God, we are called to honor Him with the way we handle the hurt. Without giving it all to Him and allowing Him to guide our response, there’s no way to work through it in a way that shows others His goodness, grace, and mercy through us.

I would be lying if I said that it’s not sometimes a daily struggle to fight the fleshly desire to take dealing with hurt into my own hands. If I told you that this is something I have already overcome, it just simply wouldn’t be true. But again, even that striving, is something I could never accomplish apart from my Father. When we lay our burdens down at His feet, He carries us through and teaches us to walk in His grace, day by day.

I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

John 15:5

I feel called to share this today, kind of as a continuation of this post from a few weeks ago, and it’s my prayer that you’re encouraged! We have a good, good Father!

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Two Random Recipes

I’ve been meaning to share these recipes, but I keep forgetting and they’re both so simple, neither really “deserves” it’s own blog post. So, here ya go friends!

Best “Fixed Up” Ranch Dressing

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Ingredients:

  • 1 ranch dressing packet (I always use Hidden Valley)
  • 1 cup milk (or buttermilk)
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Instructions:

  • Mix together and chill. Guaranteed to be as good if not better than your favorite restaurant ranch. So good. Fattening. But so good.

Best Rice Krispy Treats

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Ingredients:

  • 5 tablespoons of butter
  • 8 cups, plus 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 6 cups rice crispy cereal
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions:

  • Line a 9×9 pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.
  • In a large pot over low heat, melt butter. Once butter is melted, add in 8 cups mini marshmallows, stirring constantly.
  • Once the marshmallows are just melted, remove from heat and stir in cereal and salt until just coated in marshmallow mixture.
  • Now stir in the remaining 2 cups of mini marshmallows.
  • Pour mixture into prepared pan and lightly press in evenly. You don’t want to pack them down, because that will make them hard, so just lightly smooth them out int he pan.
  • Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

These are probably my husband’s all-time favorite treat and this is the best recipe I’ve ever tasted because of the pillowy goodness that’s made from adding the 2 additional cups of marshmallows at the end. I found this recipe here.

 

Punkindoodle Paci Clips

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I made bracelets for 2 years. 100% of the profits went towards mission work, both in Haiti and here at home (sending a child to church camp where the focus was on missions, helping families who were going through difficult times, etc.). I loved the creativity of making bracelets, was constantly blown away by the opportunities Jesus laid before me, and I was so thankful for the wonderful people it brought me in contact with all over the world. Just before I found out that we were expecting Landon, I felt the Lord leading me to end my business. I struggled with it because I was doing so well, but in my heart, I knew that season was coming to an end. I ended Renmen Abonde on a high note at a big community craft fair, where I made over $1600 for missions in just a few hours. It was all Jesus.

I had a wonderful pregnancy and the last 7 months since our little boy was born have been even sweeter than I could have ever imagined. See, Jesus knew that this new season of motherhood was coming. I didn’t have a clue, but He knew, and He protected me from feeling torn between Renmen Abonde and the responsibilities of taking care of myself and a new baby. He protected me from allowing my thriving business to just fizzle out. He protected me from the guilt and frustration I could have felt if I hadn’t ended it in the right way at the right time. His time.

I have always been creative. I was the little girl hosting “cooking shows” from the bathtub and making miniature doll houses out of moss and bark from the yard. At different times of my life, there has always been some creative outlet that I’ve put my heart and soul into. When Jesus called me to end Renmen Abonde, I had to trust Him. I knew there would be something else at some point, in some form or fashion, and sure enough, there is. He’s so faithful.

I got the idea to make pacifier clips because I wanted something beautiful, yet functional, that was unlike anything I could buy at the store. I wanted something special, something different, something with that quality and timeless style that you can only get if it’s handmade. I started looking around on etsy and pinterest, and while I was able to find a few things that suited my taste, I was blown away by the cost. And that’s when I realized, I could make that myself, and for a fraction of the cost. After making a few and being thrilled with the look, feel, and versatility, I realized there are other Momma’s who would love my clips as much as I do for their little ones! So, once again, my creative heart has found a new love, and in the true nature of our Savior, it’s something that’s meeting me right where I am.

See, when I was a college student, bracelets were perfect. It was just where I was in life (not that I don’t still love bracelets, but I just mean that fashion isn’t exactly my first thought in the mornings nowadays). My first thought now is my little boy and how to love him better and meet his needs to the best of my ability. So, these pacifier clips are not only fitting for where I am, but they are a sweet reminder of how Jesus works. He meets us right where we are and loves us, provides for us, and guides us in every season.

My grandma, who we all lovingly called “Baba,” called me Punkindoodle. She passed away a few years ago, and went Home to be with Jesus and my Paw. I named Punkindoodle Paci Clips in her memory, and my hope is that the love and appreciation for tradition that she instilled in me is evident in each and every clip I make. They are all unique and special in their own way, and you will find that they don’t distract from your little one’s outfit like most clips sold in stores do. Instead, they will complement and be a soft, helpful tool to keep your child’s pacifier, rattle, or teething toy within reach, off the floor, and away from germs.

Thank you for reading and allowing me to share my heart behind this new venture. Jesus is in the details, and it’s because of Him that I am proud to share my story.

To order, email punkindoodlepaciclips@gmail.com

Be sure to like Punkindoodle Paci Clips on facebook and follow us on instagram!

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Fabric clips are $8, leather clips are $10, bundles of 3 (which include one leather clip) are $20 (Shipping fees do apply)