12600 Pelican Beach Road, Merrifiled, MN (218) 851-1937
Healing, Ministry

Do you have someone who is hard to love? Is there someone who you think just doesn’t like you or is hard to communicate with? Has there been someone who has hurt you in some way and your relationship isn’t quite the same? Well…let’s work on that!

12 gifts for the hard to love
Gift of love

We all have one…

I have all the above. I think if we’re honest we do too. This month is gift giving season, typically. But if your reading this and it isn’t December…than all the better! Because for this relationship which is somehow not right to be ok again… this concept needs to happen no matter what time of year.

Let’s first look at our own heart. The Lord says, “People judge by the outward appearances, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7 

Isn’t this passage so true? Looking at this person who is hard to love. WHY? Why are they hard to love? How they act or speak to others? To us? How they choose to live? I am sure we can think of 12 ways one person has wronged us. This passage holds to this very thing. We are looking at the outside appearances, their life versus God created them and loves them and so must we. No matter what. So now the need to find 12 ways back to love instead of wronged.

Why try?

The same thing holds true to the one who hurt you.  The one who continues to ignore you or include you in their gatherings.  If we are a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, we are to love…no matter what.  Remembering His 2 greatest commandments. “Love the Lord with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength…AND love your neighbor as yourself.”

SO…ready for an idea…one that may not work exactly the way you think but I guarantee will please the Lord. 

12 gift Ideas

12 gifts. You can do the 12 anyway you choose. Maybe it will be over a year, one gift a month, or all in 12 consecutive days. It doesn’t matter. Just commit to 12 gifts to this person.  Get your calendar, planner, or whatever you use and look at daily or weekly opportunities to mail or drop your gift.  Next write down 12 gifts this person may love. Food like those cute jars filled with something they can make. I love this because if they choose to make the item it will remind them of you and your relationship. Other ideas can be a card, bookmark, favorite DVD, CD, or movie tickets. Gardening seeds, teas or coffee, hot cocoa, lotions, and gift cards are wonderful little gestures of love. 

gifts for the hard to love
Do you need a great editing program for you pictures….I love this one!
12 gifts for the hard to love
Gingerbread Spiced Syrup…recipe below

In addition to every gift, include a note. You will need to go before the Lord and ask for wisdom to your wording. You want to be sensitive to whatever your relationship has been in the past as well as to why it is a-strange in the present.  Make it special. Fill your heart with love for them by asking the Lord to help you with your hurt or harden feelings. He loves prayers like this, because relationships are VERY important to Him.

Easy boxes filled with Elderberry syrup

What about after…

Lastly, after the 12 days and gifts have been given, if something has not already been sparked by the first one or two, again pray. “Why Lord has this person not responded? What do I need to do next? Help me to continue to love them and bring them to mind to lift to you.” I know from doing this very thing…God has healed. Whether it was during the gift giving time, or just in this prayer time. He answered. A hint of advice, don’t call them or if you see them don’t say ,”Hey did you get anything from me? Did you get the gifts I sent?” Why? Because by asking you are looking for something in return. Keep humble.

Broken relationships bring us to sinful actions. Gossip, talking bad about this person, rudeness, and unforgiveness.  Which all of these separates us from our Lord. If we want unity, if we call ourselves a loving person, than we must do our best to be Christ-like and reach out. If that person doesn’t respond, we pray for them and move on. 

Joy

 One thing can stand out when you do this activity. You can experience joy in the gift giving process making it special for this child of God and it provides an opportunity to pray for them.  There is nothing more joyful in our daily lives than bringing joy into another. We just never know what is going on in the hearts of others. But the Lord does. 

Let me know what happened

Let me know if you tried this. By your comments you could help another. I will be VERY anxious to see how it goes. In both situations so far I have done, it was misunderstandings in one and the other was facing a strong addiction. By reaching out helped heal and brought forgiveness in others in their personal lives. Amazing!

Share away!

Love deeper, talk sweeter,

Lee

Gingerbread Spiced Syrup recipe:

All products below I get from Starwest link on blog…

2 cinnamon sticks broken into pieces                12 cloves

3 tbsp fresh ginger root                                    1 tsp whole peppercorns

2 cups honey                                                       2 cups water

1 tsp fresh grated nutmeg

Directions:

Place the cinnamon, cloves, ginger root, peppercorns in a double thick cheese cloth and tie a knot to hold it all together. In a large sauce pan, add water and honey and bring to a boil. Add nutmeg and stir. Now put cheesecloth into the pot. Let sit for 5 minutes watching closely. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes uncovered. Remove from heat. Take cheesecloth and squeeze out any juice collected using the back of a spoon. Serve some immediately and any remaining let cool and transfer into nice GLASS containers. Make a wonderful gift anytime of year! Keeps for one month in refrigerator.


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Bible Journaling, Empower, Hope, The Boys

We sure get ourselves into a rut when we focus on the worst part of ourselves. We can even try to hide from connecting with God because we have deep feelings of shame or guilt. The best gift we can give ourselves is who we are to Whom knows are deepest soul.

Do you ever find yourself pretending to be someone else? Hiding from the world who you really are? I can tell you from experience this can be exhausting.  But there is Hope.

Being in the presence of Jesus with all of our junk with our guilt, shame, naked before Him we come into the very presence of grace, love, and forgiveness. Only if we are willing to choose. Only if we are willing to come before this Throne of Grace will we experience the Hope.

In a similar way to our Jesus, horses bring out our true selves. Horses don’t pretend and are not self-conscious. They don’t worry about how their hair looks, if they are too fat or too thin. Horses show up exactly how they are full of grace and pure honesty. They are not ashamed to be afraid or to show contentment.  

The Gift of Being True To Self

When I am in the presence of our horses, I can take a deep breath and release the pressures of the things I am holding in. By gazing into their beautiful brown eyes, these giants who have reason to fear me, brings me peace. Just like Jesus. 

“Do you give the horse his strength, or clothe his neck with a flowing mane?” Job 39:19  The Lord does this and yet the horse contents to gentle this strength to befriend us. They can help bring us into a closer, deeper relationship with our Creator God by simply experiencing the picture of who we are and Who He is.

Often we can be such a klutz in how we approach our Lord.  Just like the horses, He is available offering us the greatest gift EVER…Himself and just as we are. 

We can choose to overcome any false truth about ourselves when we experience the Bigness of our God!

May each of you find the Truth and open the Gift! Unwrap whatever you feel is keeping you in the box. Trust this truth… He is worth it and so are you!

God’s blessing upon you all.

Love deeper, talk sweeter,

Lee

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Crafts, Paper/Cards, Ranch Life
Do you ever wish you had some creative way to give a small gift to friends for the family? Just something that can be quick to make and easy to fill? These cute boxes only take some fun background paper and a little do-dad here and there. Imagination goes a long way to set the stage for your gift. I always think of the personality or something special about the person to give the gift box a special touch. Especially fun is what you put inside! I put homemade tea bags in one of mine along with a cookie snack. This gives the idea for the person to relax and enjoy a cup of tea. (of course, I would only use homemade tea blends) Below I give you other ideas for you to get the picture. So get creative and have a blast with these! With Valentine’s coming up I know there would be teachers who would adore one of the boxes! I used a scorer in my cutter. I love this tool! It extends to 12×12 size paper which I use a ton when making envelopes. I have this set of horses I use ALL the time! I can use watercolor techniques or my new blender markers! LOVE LOVE! Here are some of my favorite background papers GREAT price too… Flic Flac Western Looks Petite Prints Lawn Fawn Just loved making all these fun cards for ones I love! Enjoy being creative and let me know how you like them…even send a picture! God’s blessings as you give to others of your time and talents! Love deeper, talk sweeter, Lee  
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Bible Journaling, Ministry, Overcome, Peace, Ranch Life
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased.” Luke 2:14 I have been pondering and journaling this verse all week and one word just poured over me. Peace overstress. Is it possible? Well, I believe yes! No, I CHOOSE to believe yes. Imagine, being pregnant, or your wife is. You have to travel at the worst time because the government has an order. You get to your destination and they lost your reservation and to top it off, you go into labor so you find the next best place, a barn. (I think this would be kinda cool, but still scary) Have you ever had so much stress in a day, a week, a month, or year? Does it ever seem like there is no hope in your situation? The thing is, the angels on that day declared Peace on earth. God had a plan. His plan? For peace to be in people’s hearts. Yet here’s the thing, it will only impact ones who sincerely get the reality that a baby Who’s name is Jesus, came into the world for them, YOU and ME! And to accept it. Peace only comes to ones who want to see AND experience the peace from the pressures of this world. Just like in the Christmas story with Mary, Joseph, and their new baby we see stress. Stress happens, it builds and it seems like the struggle will never stop! However, when we choose to have peace in the One who is Peace, He can bring calm within the storm. Flowing rapidly within your heart! It won’t matter to you what the doctor tells you, what a person says bad about you, what is happening in the world. “The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phill. 4:7 I personally experience this peace when I hear bad news. Having cancer. Losing my dad. My oldest deciding and becoming a police officer AND moving 1600 miles away. Plus a ton more! Stress happens daily. But it is always in the CHOICE of how we choose to deal with that stress. How would you love to embrace a peace that nothing can pierce through? How is that possible? First, it’s through acceptance. Accepting you are a sinner, that every day won’t be a wonderful, peachy day but you will trust God through it. Next… and this is a tough one…do not waste time thinking things over and over in your mind. Worrying, repeating the situation in your mind, instead, choose to set “your affection on things above.” Colossians 3:2 Lastly, give thanks in every moment you can. Set your mind to bring everything to prayer instead of fretting over things you can not fix. Phill. 4:6 “In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be known to God.” Have you Thanked GOD for a problem, situation, relationship issue, or any bad news? YES, this verse is saying IN EVERYTHING be prayerful and thankful! It’s hard, but I did this for the first time several years ago when our son almost died. I THANKED God. Why? Because within thanking Him for the 19 months I had with Mitch, I was giving him back to Jesus. God knows and HE is in control. There is SO much Peace in receiving that one truth! God will turn all things to good…He promises! So this season, think of the First Holy Family, starting out stressful, in a corrupt world, yet finding the peace that this new child is the born King Who is called, Prince of Peace! May your season this year and next be filled with HIS Peace that ONLY HE CAN GIVE! In Jesus Name! LOVE DEEPER, TALK SWEETER, Lee
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Crafts, Paper/Cards, Ranch Life
Our homemade Christmas ornaments always reflect our lives. Of course, if you’re making an ornament or card for someone, you may change it up a bit for their personality or yours. Our western life and faith give a taste of who we are and what we love to share. We hope the ideas below spark some ideas. The ornament is made with a clear bulb and rubs on letters. Easy peasy…I love attaching the ornaments onto a gift. Just brings a little sparkle. The Stamping’ Up products I get from a friend of mine. Here is her link if you don’t have a demonstrator. The card is using: Real Red Card stock Basic Black Card stock Shimmery White Card stock Glimmery Paper with Background 2″ circle punch Basic Black Ink Pad White Craft Ink Pad Hemp cardboard letters I cut out using my Big Shot and small die cut Set of Wild Horses Chalks Directions: Simply stamp your image onto your glittery white card stock. Mine had an image on it but you sure can use an embossing folder to create your own. Punch out image Chalk as you like Layered using dots or pop-ups Painted my letters with White craft ink While still wet you can add some dazzling diamond glitter. I placed letters to look like NOEL and used pop-ups for them too. Layer your card and you’re done! This one is easy peasy! You will need: Real Red Card Stock Shimmery White Card Stock Sweater embossing Folder Pine Cone framelits Banners Framelits Banners Stampset Big Shot Creation Time: Do all your Big Shot things first Pine Cones, a banner of choice, and your sweater Mount and layer your card stock and create with your cut outs. Such a simple card, and so COZY too! My sister got into this homemade card making and she loves it! Especially Christmas! I just got this in the mail today and it made my day! Ornaments are pretty easy nowadays with clear bulbs. I especially like the flat ones as you can fill them easily and put the rub on letters on easier too. Rub on are pretty popular…here is some ideas. Making something special is always rewarding and a great expression of LOVE! Merry Christmas! Love deeper, talk sweeter, Lee
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Healing, Hope
Mark 5:21-39 This bible passage is overwhelming me right now! It’s our son’s 20th and here is why. Imagine Jairus, a leader of the local synagogue PLEADING with Jesus. A man whom all Jairus co-workers hated. Why was he pleading and pleading fervently my NLT states? Because his daughter was dying. He didn’t care what people thought. What consequences would come from him approaching Jesus? He just wanted his daughter well. Have you ever been there? Have you ever gone before the holy throne Pleading fervently for some hope, answers, rescue? We have. But sadly at the time, I wasn’t a believer. I was only going through the motions. Church on Sunday, pray before meals, doing the church motions when needed, but no REAL relationship with Jesus. Until I had a crisis. My child was dying. My child was in need of healing. I pleaded fervently, but sadly the Bible states in John 9:31 “We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but He is ready to hear those who worship Him and do his will.” I was a sinner. I am a sinner now. What is the difference to Him hearing my prayers now versus then? The Lord woke me up during that time. He used this crisis to draw me closer to Him. He allowed this time of suffering for our son and us to say, “to Whom do you serve?” I was serving only me. No relationship with Jesus. Not admitting I needed a Savior. Not forgiving ones who hurt me or confessing I am nothing without Him. Our son did get a miracle. He did survive. But I believe it was not because of my prayers. It was because of the many who were believers. The many who sat and pleated fervently before the Lord as they were worshipping Him and doing His will. Jesus says to Jairus, “don’t be afraid, just have faith.” Faith is believing. Faith is not just doing the motion and never repenting. Going about our own ways, not God’s ways. Choosing what is best for us, instead of asking the Lord what is best. That is a clear sign of a person not doing God’s will. Faith is encompassing His word and truth and allowing the truths to make you change not run away, get angry, or worse yet only take what “feels good”. “Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1. Another word, faith is trusting full heartily the Lord is in control of the situation and YOU and ME! Faith is letting God do HIS work, HIS way and our job are to let Him and repent. Jesus healed the young girl just before He met Jairus’ need. Jesus asked for what from the girl? FAITH… that is what made her well.! Now, look at what came next. This was huge for me. Jesus asked ONLY Peter, James, and John to go with Him. Not because they were special, but because they had FAITH and believed this girl was not dead and Jesus was in control. The crowds laughed. But in a few minutes, only believers witnessed the miracle. She was asked by our Savior to get up and she did! It is only by grace that it took another 3 years before I was reading my bible and the passage consumed my heart. “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. 23 But I will reply, I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws. It was at that moment I fell to my knees, and confessed, and cried out, “no more Jesus. I am yours. I repent of my selfish ways. Make me new, and change me.” THREE years AFTER the crisis. What took so long? PRIDE. I am thankful to this day for 2 things. ONE that He used such a trial to wake me up. I do thank Him now and then for our son getting sick to the point of near death to save me. (another hard thing to do is thank the Lord for a trial, but realizing He will do something amazing in it) TWO, for the believers who were praying for a miracle. It was there pleading fervently that the Lord heard. Not mine, not my husband (even though he met Jesus a week later in recovery that saved him. It didn’t take him 3 years) But believers. I know this may seem hard to understand or even for some to be offended. But I believe the bible is true. The WHOLE bible even the parts that are hard to hear or read. The parts that make us realize who we are in Jesus’ eyes. A sinner, in need of a Savior! If you’re offended, I get it. I was there. It is good to be offended like the Pharisee’s were. BUT, don’t continue to be a Pharisee like in the passage in Matt. 7:21…You have the choice to change all of that. Our son is 22 today. It has been 20 YEARS. He was given a second chance. WE ALL WERE! How amazing is our God! God loves you! Love deeper, talk sweeter and open your heart to where to go from here, Lee
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