Thursday, December 28, 2006


This time of year is always a busy one for my family and I. It seems there is always something that a pastor's family is invited to, involved in, or needed for during the holiday season. I think things should start to slow down here soon though and I can write more regularly again. I did have time for my twice weekly devotion that I post over at The Well and that I share here too.


Psalms 73:2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped.

Just a question for everyone today….are there areas in your life that you have let slip?

Take some time and inventory your heart AND your time. Sometimes the slip can be so gradual we don’t even notice it right away.

Thursday, December 21, 2006


Ladies, I don’t have any fancy words or thoughts for you today. What I have is so much better – God’s Word and eight verses where He tells us to FORGET NOT. Take some time today to see what each of those things are that we are told not to forget.

Deuteronomy 8:11 Beware that thou forget not the LORD thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day:

Deuteronomy 9:7 Remember, and forget not, how thou provokedst the LORD thy God to wrath in the wilderness: from the day that thou didst depart out of the land of Egypt, until ye came unto this place, ye have been rebellious against the LORD.

Psalms 10:12 Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thine hand: forget not the humble.

Psalms 74:19 O deliver not the soul of thy turtledove unto the multitude of the wicked: forget not the congregation of thy poor for ever.

Psalms 74:23 Forget not the voice of thine enemies: the tumult of those that rise up against thee increaseth continually.

Psalms 103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

Proverbs 3:1 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:

Hebrews 13:16 But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


Psalms 10:1 Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?

Have you ever gone through times when you’re “in the pits,” so to speak, and you’ve cried out to God and asked Him to rescue you from that pit you’re in – and He didn’t. I know I have. And I asked God, “Why?”

Over the years I have learned that the reason He left me there was because His grace was just as sufficient for me while I was in the pit, as it was when I was out. It was during those times that I have had to learn that even though I felt alone, that God was truly there with me and that I needed to have peace in the pit, peace with the darkness, and peace when I felt surrounded by the enemy.

I have learned that for years I was asking the wrong question. I was asking, “God, what are you going to do for me during this time of trial?” But what I should have been asking was, “God, what do you want ME to do during this time of trial?”

Look at Daniel. Daniel was thrown in the pit with the lions. God did not rescue him in the sense of removing him from the pit. God left him there, surrounded by furious lions. God did not expect Daniel to conquer the lions, he just asked that Daniel have faith in Him and wait patiently (and in peace.)

Daniel 6:22-23 My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt. (23) Then was the king exceeding glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him, because he believed in his God.

The lions were still there when Daniel left, waiting for the next victim; but they had no power over Daniel - and they have no power over you either! Daniel went on to prosper, and we will, too – so we need rejoice!

Sometimes I think we exhaust ourselves fighting against and trying to change the conditions around us – when all we really need to do is trust in the Lord, lean on Him, and have faith that He is in control of all that is going on in and around our lives.

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Monday, December 18, 2006


Here it is…..the week before Christmas!! This Christmas season has been a very enjoyable one at our house – not too busy and NOT TOO COLD!!!!!

Here is what we’ll be eating at our house this week:

MONDAY ~~~~ Stir fry and egg rolls


WEDNESDAY ~~~~ Swedish meatballs, Rice & Broccoli

THURSDAY ~~~~ Calazone, corn, and Brownies

FRIDAY ~~~~ Marinated Pork Chops, Stuffing, & veggies

SATURDAY ~~~~ Steak, Potatoes, Salad, & fruit

SUNDAY ~~~~ Ham, Augratin potatoes, rolls

Check out other wonderful weekly menus at Laura's Blog. She has a wonderful blog that helps keep your home organized and running smoothly.

Thursday, December 14, 2006



  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 ounces sliced ham
  • 4 ounces sliced Swiss cheese
  • 1 (8 ounce) package herbed dry bread stuffing mix
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted


  1. Mix together the cream of chicken soup and milk in a small bowl.
  2. Pour enough of the soup into a slow cooker to cover the bottom.
  3. Layer chicken breasts over the sauce.
  4. Cover with slices of ham and then Swiss cheese.
  5. Pour the remaining soup over the layers, stirring a little to distribute between layers.
  6. Sprinkle the stuffing on top, and drizzle butter over stuffing.
  7. Cover, and cook on Low for 4 to 6 hours, or 2 to 3 hours on High.


Hebrews 2:1 Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.

Oh, how easy it is to let things slip ~ in our heart, our life, our homes, and even in our marriages. Obviously this doesn’t take God by surprise, because He warns us of just such things in Hebrews.

Sometimes things just become so routine that we just kind of operate on “cruise control.” We go through the motions, but our heart isn’t in it any more.

Let’s not let that happen to us or to our families. Let’s make sure we give the “more earnest heed” to those things we have heard. Take time to meditate over the preaching you hear throughout the week, the reading and studying that you are doing of God’s Word, and the actions you go through each and every day. You and those around will benefit so much by putting your heart into all that you do.

Let’s not slip ladies – those slips lead to falls – and those falls cause bruises and injuries (to you and those that end up slipping with you.)

Tuesday, December 12, 2006



It seems like some people go crazy during the holidays. It seems they get all carried away with the shopping, decorating, entertaining, etc. I enjoy all those things myself, but it is so important we keep everything in its right perspective.

Can you picture a “Martha” type and a “Mary” type during the holidays?

Martha is the one who is more worried about whether everything is decorated or wrapped “just right.” She spends days baking and stresses out over all the holiday plans and activities.

She gets so wrapped up in the outward part of the holiday she forgets to focus on what is really being celebrated. She has no time for giving thanks and enjoying time with the Lord because there is “too much to do.”

Ladies, lets not get so carried away with all the “fluff” of the holidays and forget why we have the holiday to begin with.

Remember the saying.....HE IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON.

Luke 10:40-42 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. (41) And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: (42) But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

Monday, December 11, 2006


Well, this is looking to be an interesting week at the Olson house. It has been years since my loving hubby has worked anywhere but at home or the church. But, as of last Saturday he is working a part-time job assisting the manager at a local grocery store near or house.

Jeff is excited about this opportunity. We have shopped at this store for the last 8 years and over the last year and a half we are finally seeing fruit from all the witnessing we have done there. We now have a total of 4 employees coming to our church and many more showing interest, so Jeff is looking forward to working there and continuing to build a strong testimony with the employees.

What makes things interesting is just adjusting our household schedule and routine around Daddy’s New Work Schedule. We can do it though!!!!!

Here is our menu for the week and how we will work it around Jeff’s schedule.

MONDAY Tuna noodle casserole w/ fruit & crescent rolls (Jeff works until 8pm, so this will be easy to heart up for him when he gets home.)

TUESDAY Tacos (Jeff works from 6-11pm – We can have this dinner prepared and eat together before he leaves)

WEDNESDAY Cubed Steak, Potatoes, gravy, & green beans YUMMY!!!!!

THURSDAY Meatloaf, Baked potatoes, & sourdough bread (This is a crock pot meal. Jeff preached all afternoon on Thursday’s and then teaches Bible Institute in the evenings until 10pm, so I try to have a hearty meal ready before he goes from the retirement homes to the church)

FRIDAY Chicken Cordon Bleu (Jeff works 6-11pm. This will be cooked in the crock pot and we will eat before he goes to work.)

SATURDAY Enchiladas & Spanish rice (Jeff works 12-6pm – so dinner will be on the table when he gets home!)

SUNDAY Taco Salad (a quick, easy meal after church)

Thursday, December 07, 2006


And there is nothing new or special cooking in my crock pot - but here's the recipe none the less.

Tonight's meal is spaghetti. I'm cooking a big batch of it so that I will have sauce to make lasagna on Saturday.

1 lb. ground beef
Chopped onion, to taste
2 (1 lb.) cans tomatoes, cut up
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 (12 oz.) can tomato paste
1 c. beef broth (bouillon)
2 tbsp. parsley
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. dried oregano leaves
1 tsp. dried basil leaves
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

Brown meat and onion in fry pan, drain off fat; transfer to crock pot. Add remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve over hot spaghetti. Can be made ahead and frozen.

To see more slow cooking recipes check out Sandra's Blog each and every Thursday!!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Bar-B-Quing in the Snow

Yep - that's what we're doing tonight before church!!!

Our good friends, the Knight's, are moving the Washington soon. This is a family that we have grown so close to over the last 15 years. We have been there for the birth of 5 of the 14 children (one of which I even delivered), they have been there for our last two children's births, and never left our side for over a week when Steven died. To just call them friends is such an understatement. We are going to miss them greatly.

So, this evening we decided to do something that our two families have always enjoyed doing together....BBQing!!!! It may only be 15 degrees and the snow may be falling - but those minor little details are not going to stop us!!! (Besides, the guys will be the ones outside cooking ~~ the ladies will be inside handling all the rest.) LOL

Thing of the memories we'll make this evening!!! Then, once we're done we'll head to church together and praise the Lord for his goodness and grace - and for giving us such wonderful, special people to serve with all these years!!!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Getting Bitter or Better


We all go through times in our life that are tough – sometimes those periods are short and sometimes they seem to go on and on. During those times, how we react will play a major factor in how our family and homes flow. We can either get BITTER or look to God and make things BETTER. The choice really is ours.

James 3:10-11 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?

We can’t have a home that has blessings AND cursings (bitterness) run through it and not have it affect those who see us. Bitterness will affect all it touches ~~ picture a child’s face when they bite into a lemon. They can’t hide that reaction – and we can’t hide bitterness in our hearts and not have it affect our family.

Is there something (no matter how little) that is causing you to be bitter? Get rid of the bitterness and let the sweet water of Christ flow through you and your home. Those sweet waters will make every season of your life more pleasant….even the difficult times.

Monday, December 04, 2006


It's taken me a while to get back into the swing of things - but I've doing much better now. Here is what we'll be having at our house this week:

MONDAY: Marinated Pork chops w/ Rice & Crescent Rolls (crock pot)


WEDNESDAY: Grilled Ham & Cheese Sandwiches w/ Tomato Soup

THURSDAY: Spaghetti, corn, salad, & French Bread (crock pot)

FRIDAY: Chicken Alfredo and Broccoli

SATURDAY: Lasagna, salad, and Bread (use left over spaghetti sauce)

SUNDAY: Scalloped Potatoes & Ham (crock pot)

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Yes, Lindsey - it's happened here too!!

I love reading Lindsey's blog - ENJOY THE JOURNEY. This week she had the joy of having one of her precious ones flush something down the toilet! (I'm only laughing because, has happened at our house, too.)

Actually, considering I had 6 children and ran a daycare for 10 years, I can't believe it only happened once!!!! But when it happened it was major. And I was very thankful it happened while we lived in base housing because I know it would have been VERY EXPENSIVE if we would have had to pay for the repairs.

I did learn something from the experience - and I will pass that knowledge onto all of you. Tupperware Toddler cups fit perfectly into the toilet and cause a major suction to make it impossible to get out without removing the whole toilet!!!!!

Thanks for the trip down memory lane Lindsey!! I love looking back and laughing over things from when my kids were little!

What a Night.....

It all started about 10 years ago - when I was pregnant with Elisabeth....and since that time it has only gotten worse ~~~~ INSOMNIA!!!!

At first we just thought it was due to the pregnancy, but obviously that is not the case anymore, considering the last time I was pregnant was 7 years ago.

When I say "insomnia" I'm not talking about an occasional night of inability to sleep. I think I could learn to live with that. For me it is an every night thing - and some nights, like last night, are worse than others.

The doctor's call what I have "chronic insomnia," and for years we have been trying to find something that would help. A typical night of sleep for me is 4 to 5 hours (and not all at one time.) But last night would be what I call a BAD NIGHT. Last night I got about 2 hours of sleep - in 15 to 20 minutes spurts.

I know becoming frustrated with the situation doesn't help, so I do my best to lay in bed and rest - and it is also a great time to pray.....I did lots of praying last night.

Finally, at 3:30am I gave up and GOT UP. I know I'm a morning person ~ but not THAT MUCH of a morning person!! Oh well, at least I can say the Lord and I had a wonderful morning together.