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Women Living Well Blog: May 2011

Women Living Well Blog

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Problem of Envy and Selfish Ambition

The day you were born-again you grew in wisdom. Your eyes were opened to god's wisdom and your life forever changed. There are many who are wise in the world's eyes but true wisdom comes only from God.

"Wisdom, does not mean knowledge. It does not mean information. It means the application of knowledge with divine power to the reshaping of life, transforming attitudes, transforming behavior into righteousness. Wisdom then is not what I know, wisdom is how I live. And so how I live according to the wisdom of God is a barometer on my spiritual condition." ~ John McArthur

James tells us in James 3:14 that envy and selfish ambition harbored in our hearts is earthly, unspiritual, and demonic wisdom. Take note of where this envy and selfish ambition lies - it lies quietly in our hearts where no one may see it...but there it lies and it leads us down a path into disorder.

This next quote is LONG lol!  but bear with me as John McArthur says it so much better than I ever could:

"So earthly wisdom is spawned by demons, it is reflective of sensual feeling and it goes no further than the fallenness of mankind. That is earthbound sensual demonic wisdom. And that's the way most people live. But Satan calls it wisdom.

When Eve was in the garden in chapter 3 verse 6, she looked on the fruit because she heard that the tree was able to make one wise. That was a lie. Satan always promises wisdom. And he always promises that you will know and be in the know and understand and be erudite and be educated. But the wisdom of the world proceeds from evil spirits. It proceeds from fallen angels. It proceeds from demons. It proceeds from Satan and his agents who are disguised as ministers of light when in fact they are ministers of darkness."  

This video below touches on worldly wisdom, God's wisdom and how I pursue peace in my daily life.  Peace is my theme word of the year!

James 3:13-18 ESV

Wisdom from Above

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. 15 This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. 18 And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

Selfish ambition leads to disorder.  Is there disorder in your home, work place, friendships or church?  Perhaps selfish ambition has reared its ugly head.  Pursue wisdom from above - be pure, peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.

Walk with the King!

Today is Women Living Well Wednesday! It's a Link-Up Day!!!

Join the fun, do a little blog hopping and don't forget if you join below -please add the Women Living Well Wednesdays button to your post so your readers can find us here! (posts can include the topics of marriage, parenting, homemaking, finances, recipes, organization and more!)

I'm linked up here today: Mustard Seeds

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

I Stumble A Lot!

We are now up to chapter 3 in our James Video Series!  This chapter is a HARD one for me. It really points out so many flaws that I have. I am a woman of many words  lol! and Proverbs 10:19 says “When words are many, sin is not absent. But he who holds his tongue is wise.”

James 3 says that NO man can tame the tongue. It is filled with deadly poison.

I long to be a woman who is filled with life giving words. Who is filled with grace and mercy. But the reality is – I stumble in many ways (3:2). And when I stumble, it brings pain to others and to my own soul. I long to be free of this problem in my life – to be so full of wisdom and self-control that I never ever stumble again!

But let me be honest, I stumble!  I stumble all the time in my marriage, in my parenting, and sadly with my friendships!  Just this week, I had to email a friend and apologize for critical words I spoke.  SO embarrassing! I urge you to be very careful with your words in friendships. Pray before you send emails or post on facebook.  Pray God would show you if anything you type could hurt another. Filter your words with love and grace. Be forgiving when someone else acts immaturely. Pursue unity.

I made a video last summer about this very passage of James and included my children. Let’s teach our children while they are young the power of words. It will save them a lot of heartache and produce a generation of children who are world changers for Jesus!

James 3:1-12 ESV - Taming the Tongue

3:1 Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. 2 For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. 3 If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. 4 Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. 5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things.

How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so. 11 Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? 12 Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water.

We will never master perfect control of our tongue.  Forever we will need to daily align our heart with God's word, filtering our thoughts and words through the strainer of God's word and repenting when the words we speak hurt others.  The next time someone hurts you with their words - remember grace...because you at any minute are about to slip up too!  As a matter of fact, often it's right after someone else's slip up that I slip up 10 times worse (for example in marriage - my husband says one word critical - and whamo - out comes 2 critical words from me.  Often what I say  is far worse than the first offense.) 

I like to journal my reminds me how much I need Jesus.  The cross says I am flawed but it also says I am forgiven. 

Walk with the King!

This post is linked to Titus 2sdays, A Holy Experience, We Are That Family, and Raising Homemakers.

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dinner On The Go - Crock-Pot Hoagies!

Janelle's husband and son

Janelle from Comfy In the Kitchen, is guest posting with us again this Friday!   I love this recipe!

Janelle writes: "Baseball season is an exciting time of year for my "boys". School lets out, we come home, do homework, Daddy gets home from work, I finish dinner and away those boys go! I love seeing my husband and son spending time together doing something they both love. I also love spending time alone with the girls :)

Here are two delicious sandwiches that can be made in a jiffy for those busy weekday nights...or any night! Love to you, Janelle "

Crockpot Italian Sausage Hoagies
(These are also great sandwiches for company after church!)

Beef broth, water and Italian sausage. You may use any kind of Italian sausage you like. I have sweet Italian sausage picture above. You may enjoy hot, mild, sweet, etc.

Simply place Italian sausage in a large crockpot, cover with beef broth and water. Turn on high for 4-6 hours. You may add onions, red and green peppers to the crock pot during this time. I choose to saute mine-both ways work!

Here I sauted sliced onions on med-high heat in a little cooking spray until tender.

This is after 6 hours of cooking in the crock pot- these sausages are SO tender and juicy..MMmmm..

I'll give you 2 guesses what is in dijon mayonnaise...

Mix together

Whala! This really makes the sandwich!

Place Italian sausage in a hoagie bun top with fresh swiss cheese, onions (peppers if desired) and dijon mayo. YUM!!!!

Crockpot Italian Sausage Hoagies
(makes 12- you may halve)

Italian sausage (12)
3 cups beef broth
water to cover
1 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 onion (peppers if desired)
cooking spray
2 cups shredded swiss cheese

Place Italian sausage, beef broth, and water in a crockpot. Cook on high for 4-6 hours. You may place onions/peppers in the crockpot all together, or you can saute them separately. Combine dijon and mayo in a small bowl. Place Italian sausage on hoagie bun top with cheese and onions/peppers and dijon mayo.

Chicken Hoagies

Start by marinating bite sized raw chicken breasts in 1 cup of italian dressing and 1 cup ranch dressing. (My friend Mary taught me this-I LOVE it)

Peppers and onions

In a large pan add chicken with a fork (you will get some marinade in the pan-this is okay). Cook on med-high heat until chicken is cooked through. Add salt and pepper.

Saute peppers and onions in cooking spray

Set aside cooked chicken.

Place hoagie buns topped with cheese under the broiler for 5 mins. (you may butter the buns if you wish)

5 mins= Enough time to play airplane, lol.

Add chicken, peppers and onions! 

A winner with the boys!

Chicken Hoagies
(makes 6)

4 chicken breasts cut up raw
1 cup Italian dressing
1 cup Ranch dressing
1 cup or 6 slices swiss cheese
1 onion
1 green pepper
1 red pepper
1 package hoagie buns
salt and pepper if desired

Cut raw chicken into bite sized pieces and marinate in Italian/Ranch dressing for at least 2 hours. Take chicken out with fork and place onto large pan. Cook on medium-high heat until chicken is done, add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. Saute onions and peppers in cooking spray. Broil hoagie buns with cheese under broiler for 5 mins. Add chicken, peppers and onions. Whala!

I hope these quick and easy hoagie recipes will come in handy for you Ladies! They are much tastier (and most likely healthier) than getting them at your local sub shop! Enjoy! 

Walk with the King!

If you are looking for more recipes or have one to share - visit Janelle's new link-up today!
You can follow Janelle on her own blog Comfy In The Kitchen or on Facebook and Twitter.
I am participating in Titus 2sdays, Tempt Your Tummy Tuesday, and Balancing Beauty and Bedlam recipe exchanges. I am also linked up to Raising Homemakers Weds. link up and Works For Me Wednesday! For more blogger recipes go to these links.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Danger of Bloggers

Faith plus nothing equals nothing. You can know more about a person by what they do rather than what they say. I would say this is one of the dangers of bloggers. The world mainly sees my words. But the integrity of my writing comes by how I LIVE out the words I write.

Sally Clarkson once said "The first book anyone ever reads will be your family." What she meant was - live the truth out in your home first - then write. I want to write from the faith that is lived out in my home and that takes repentance and the pursuit of God daily on my knees.

There is NOTHING good or Godly within me. I am a sinner saved by grace and it is through his strength that I can do anything good at all.  My true faith brings good works.  Those with a dead faith can substitute words for works. Words are cheap - they are easy...but living out our faith, that's hard!

In the James 2:14-26 it says "19  You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! "   And again the danger of bloggers come to mind.  We must ask, could some of those who blog in the name of "faith" not actually be of the "faith"?  Absolutely!  We must test those we follow - do their words and their life match.  And the truth is in blog land that is hard to do!

So my two thoughts: 1.  Let's be on guard as to whose voices we listen to - from our Pastor, to our Bible study leader to our favorite blogs.  Test their words against God's word - are they true?  Watch their life closely.  2.  Let's look into our own hearts, if someone were watching us closely would they say our walk matches our talk?

(This video was first played on the Good Morning Girls blog.  Our groups did a challenge where we mailed care packages to the Mercy House - this challenge is over but you can visit the Mercy House here.)

James 2;14-16 ESV

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

18  But someone will say, "You have faith and I have works." Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19  You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20  Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? 21  Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22  You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23  and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness"—and he was called a friend of God. 24  You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25  And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26  For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

Walk with the King!

This is linked to Titus 2sdays,  We Are That Family and Raising Homemakers.

And please take a minute to vote for Women Living Well and other faith based bloggers here(there are some non-Christian bloggers listed there so beware - test them before trusting them): Circle of Moms Top 25 Faith bloggers.(you can vote for more than one, once a day through June 8th!!)
Walk with the King!

Today is Women Living Well Wednesday! It's a Link-Up Day!!!

Join the fun, do a little blog hopping and don't forget if you join below -please add the Women Living Well Wednesdays button to your post so your readers can find us here! (posts can include the topics of marriage, parenting, homemaking, finances, recipes, organization and more!)


The 5 Winners of the Warrior Prayers Ebook Are...

The 5 winners of the amazing eBook, Warrior Prayers by Brooke McGlothlin are... 




Kristen Wisemann

A Doring Family


Walk with the King!
Please email me your email addresses ~ courtney(at)womenlivingwell(dot)org!


Monday, May 23, 2011

The Summer Book Club Begins Today!

I am SO excited for The Ministry of Motherhood Summer Book Club to begin TODAY!

We are now at nearly 1,500 Good Morning Girls ! We are in nearly every state from Hawaii, Honolulu and Oahu to Alaska. We are in Trinidad, West Indies, Japan, the UK, South Africa, France, Germany, Austria, Australia, Scotland, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Moldova and more!

Every Monday on, we will feature an exclusive Sally Clarkson (the author of the Ministry of Motherhood) video.  So today I thought I'd give you a sneak peak!  But after today, you will have to catch the rest of the videos over on

The summer reading plan is here if you want to follow along!  You do not need to be in a Good Morning Girls group to join us!  I know this will be an encouraging series for all the mamas out there who feel weary, discouraged, confused or just in need of some inspiration!

Walk with the King!

This post is linked to Hip Homeschool Hop, Titus 2sdays, We Are That Family, A Holy Experience and Raising Homemakers.

And please vote for Women Living Well (AND your other favorites)here:
Circle of Moms Top 25 Faith Bloggers.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Cooking For A Crowd - A Big Crowd!

Janelle from Comfy In The Kitchen is guesting posting with us today!  She writes:

Twice a year I get the pleasure of making lunch for our church's new member and guest luncheon. It is typically a pretty busy weekend for me and my family...I grocery shop for a ton of food, pile everything in my kitchen (it feels like Christmas!!!), cook the night before and the morning of and haul everything over to the church! Then, our Pastor is there to greet us with a crew of volunteers ready to help unload and set up. Call me crazy, but this is actually SO MUCH FUN for me!

Here is a sneak peak into my weekend. I wish I would have gotten more photos, but I was bussssyyy!!!

(I had 60 people to cook for today- we have had up to 120)

I made 2 of these huge salads. Lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, cucumbers, olives, and croutons.

I really like the containers at GFS...these are about $2 and have lids. I can also reuse them! 
My son "getting in on the action" crushing Heath bars for "Better than a Hug Cake"
My semi-homemade dressing. I like to use Good Seasons All Natural with olive oil, red wine vinegar, and sugar to taste.

Line em up!

Some things got a little "frozen" lol...long story. But it all worked out!!!!

The lemonade takes on the color of the berries...pretty isn't it? Very nice for Spring and Summer.
(recipe below)

My son watching me make a simple lemonade punch

 The kids area had PB and J, chips, carrots, silly cookies and juice boxes

My hubby, Pastor and friends!
My husband cutting "Better than a hug Cake"- I am VERY blessed to have such a supportive husband. I thank God for him every day.

Meatball subs- I placed them in sauce in the crockpot until ready to serve. Then we sliced fresh hoagie buns and loaded them up while people were in line. 

Chicken Salad Croissants- These I prepared before we got to the church. 

"Better Than a Hug Cake" in slices for easy serving. 

"Pineapple Pretzel Fluff"- this is ALWAYS such a huge hit! Very easy and economical.

My Pastor (Courtney's Brother-In-Law!), me and my dear friend Christina getting our picture taken by my son :) 


Chicken Salad on Croissants 
Meatballs Subs with Mozzarella 
Tossed Salad 
Berry Lemonade
Iced Tea
Water bottles

For Children:
Juice Boxes

Lemon Berry Punch

Lemon Berry Punch
Servings (12)

1 container of Simply Lemonade 
1 bag frozen mixed berries 

Pour together and enjoy! 

This was SUCH a blessing for me to serve our church today in this way.  I am very grateful, honored, and humbled to be part of this amazing church. 

"Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fevor, 
serving the Lord"
~Romans 12:11 

Keep serving your families and others Ladies! 
Thanks for letting me share my day with you.
Love to you, Janelle 

Walk with the King!

If you are looking for more recipes or have one to share - visit Janelle's new link-up today!
You can follow Janelle on her own blog Comfy In The Kitchen or on Facebook and Twitter.
I am participating in Titus 2sdays, Tempt Your Tummy Tuesday, and Balancing Beauty and Bedlam recipe exchanges. I am also linked up to Raising Homemakers Weds. link up and Works For Me Wednesday! For more blogger recipes go to these links.

And please remember to take a minute to vote for Women Living Well (and Comfy In Your Kitchen! AND your other favorites - you can vote for more than one once a day through June 8th!!) here: Circle of Moms Top 25 Faith Bloggers.