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Fresh Guacamole Recipe Including AIP Version

TEXMEX Recipes

I adore fresh homemade guacamole—thanks to my sister.

I wasted so many years of my life not appreciating avocados and then my sister made me her guac and taught me how she picks her fresh avocados from the grocery store.

In the past any time I tried eating avocados they were too mushy and slimy. Since texture is everything to me; I did not get beyond a couple of forced bites.

This recipe is so delicious you will enjoy eating guacamole and chips for a meal or as a side to delicious Tex-Mex dishes. For me, I make an auto-immune protocol recipe and fry or bake homemade sweet potato chips for dipping. (Recipe below)

Start with firm but not hard avocados. I like them with the slightest amount of spring to them, not soft. If you cannot press on them and they are totally resistant to being squeezed then the fruit will not be ready to eat for 2-3 days. If the avocados are soft, but not mushy, and easily squeezed you will have soft spreadable guacamole.  I like mine chunky with one soft avocado mixed with the firm.

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Score avocados through to the peel then scrape the insides out with a spoon. Fast and easy!DSCN3189

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Above: Press plastic wrap tightly against the guacamole to get the air out, making sure the guac is completely sealed. You can also keep the avocado pit in the dish with the guac. The plastic wrap, and the pit, will keep the guacamole from browning.

Recipe: 6 large avocados plus half of the following Pico De Gallo recipe

Pico De Gallo

Because the heat and taste of onion can vary from crop to crop, I cut a piece off and inspect it by smelling it and tasting it. This is a necessary evil because not much is worse than taking the time to chop all your ingredients, mix your recipe and find out a bad onion spoiled the flavor of the entire dish. I use equal parts tomato, onion and fresh cilantro but if the onion is too strong I cut the amount back to ¼ to ½ depending on the onion’s strength.

Pico De Gallo Recipe: (Use half of this recipe for the guac and half for chip dip or a topping to your favorite mexican dish.)

6 Roma tomatoes rinsed, core the top, chopped

1 medium white onion, peeled and chopped

1 large bunch of rinsed cilantro, chopped; remove long stems at the bottom of the bunch

1 large lime—juiced, you may use zest too if you like it

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

*Optional-2 seeded, deveined serrano peppers, minced. If you like extreme heat do NOT remove the seeds and veins. Serrano peppers, to me, have the best flavor of all the Mexican peppers. My daughter occasionally likes to make p with 2 large chopped (yes, chopped not minced) jalapeños. For flavor with mild heat use a chile or poblano pepper; seeded.

The importance is equal amounts of tomato, white onion & cilantro. I add lime juice until I can taste it mixed throughout the entire batch.

Serve with restaurant style white corn tortilla chips warmed in the oven for 3 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Eat plain with chips or as a topping on your favorite taco, fajita, burrito, quesadilla, chalupa, salad, meat or casserole.

Again, add half the Pico De Gallo to 6 large chopped avocados. Mix well and mash the avocados and pico with a fork or potato masher. I enjoy the flavor of lime in my guacamole. If the juice of 1 lime is not enough for you keep mixing in a teaspoon of lime juice at a time until you reach the desired lime flavor.

~Enjoy!

AUTO-IMMUNE PROTOCOL GUACAMOLE

I make this in a smaller batch since I am the only person in the house who eats it.

2-3 large avocados

Juice of 1/2 lime

2 tablespoons cilantro

1/8 teaspoon onion powder

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan sea salt or gray Celtic sea salt

Mix and slightly mash ingredients.

AIPers, your taste buds will thank you!

Happy Hour: 7/16/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

“WhoooHooooo!!! This is an awesome day!”

I am a people watcher…even as I drive around…I notice people. Some are driving and look like zombies with their eyes drooping and their mouths gapping open (always a little creepy-the mouths gapping open part), MANY…probably too many are on their phones! Ha! Some are fussing around obviously trying to find something they desperately MUST have to even stay alive! Some are talking to the people with them, some are arguing and fighting (makes me mad and/or sad depending on how it looks), some are crying (I start praying on this one especially), some are just chillin’ listening to music and some are listening to music that they can’t possibly be chillin’ to! ;-)  

We are in our cars A LOT, some spend a good part of their day driving around doing whatever. Some of my best times with God are in the car. No matter where we are… in our cars, in our homes, offices, etc… I believe God sometimes is tapping our shoulders and is saying, “Look up. Notice My creation…I made that sky, I painted it with those clouds, if I can do that…I can handle all of your troubles, issues with others…I can handle your sadness, and all of that change in your life that is driving you crazy!…I can take those burdens in your life, and the lives of those you love SO much. If you look to Me…I can brighten even the darkest of times.”

SO…maybe… today…look up! But if you are driving…please only do this at a stop light!!!  ;-)  

“A bright future lies ahead!” Proverbs 24:14  :-)

MORE ABOUT MICHELLE: CLICK HERE

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Pico De Gallo

Fresh Pico De Gallo Recipe

Do you have an abundance of fresh tomatoes from your garden? Then I have a recipe for you!

Fresh cilantro is a must so go pick a bunch. Ah, the scent—the taste of fresh cilantro!

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~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Today I am sharing how I make my favorite Pico De Gallo recipe. Some cooks use yellow onion, some use any type of tomato but I only use white onion and Roma tomatoes.

Because the heat and taste of onion can vary from crop to crop, I cut a piece off and inspect it by smelling it and tasting it. This is a necessary evil because not much is worse than taking the time to chop all your ingredients, mix your recipe and find out a bad onion spoiled the flavor of the entire dish. I use equal parts tomato, onion and fresh cilantro but if the onion is too strong I cut the amount back to ¼ to ½ depending on the onion’s strength.

This recipe can be made as small or large as needed.

In my house we consider Pico De Gallo a nutritious meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner; with tortilla chips. Yep, that’s it—nothing more—just Pico. I hope you don’t have a problem with that.

Pico De Gallo

Pico De Gallo Recipe:

6 Roma tomatoes rinsed, core the top, chopped

1 medium white onion, peeled and chopped

1 large bunch of rinsed cilantro, chopped; remove long stems at the bottom of the bunch

1 large lime—juiced, you may use zest too if you like it

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

*Optional-2 seeded, deveined serrano peppers, minced. If you like extreme heat do NOT remove the seeds and veins. Serrano peppers, to me, have the best flavor of all the Mexican peppers. My daughter occasionally likes to make Pico with 2 large chopped (yes, chopped not minced) jalapeños. For flavor with mild heat use a chile or Poblano pepper; seeded.

The importance is equal amounts of tomato, white onion & cilantro. I add lime juice until I can taste it mixed throughout the entire batch.

Serve with restaurant style white corn tortilla chips warmed in the oven for 3 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Eat plain with chips or as a topping on your favorite taco, fajita, burrito, quesadilla, chalupa, salad, meat or casserole.

~Enjoy!

Happy Hour: 7/9/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

Woke up to read God’s Word this morning…thinking and praying over a couple of people who are in very difficult times, and a few times in my own life where I was out of myself…where I needed help…and in a place where I had “no more in me”. The Book of Psalms in my Bible is so marked up, I can barely read some things 😜 Love the Psalms…”Hear me, O Lord, for Your lovingkindness is good; Turn to me according to the multitude of Your tender mercies…For I am in trouble; Hear me speedily.” “Make haste, O God, to deliver me! Make haste to help me, O Lord!” And there are SO many more verses in there just like these. He knows we are “weak” and get troubled “easily”. But He gave us His Word to help us…His Word is “alive and powerful”! I can’t begin to explain how, as I read it…my heart, mind and even body begin to realign with His Peace, His Thoughts and His Rest…right in the middle of stress, difficulty, troubles, worry, fear, distress, and pain. So…today…I choose to take Him at His Word…”taste and see” howboutyou?:-) 

MORE ABOUT MICHELLE: CLICK HERE

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Toxic Tuesday: Flashing Billboards On My Forehead

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“I have learned that faith means trusting in advance what will only make sense in reverse.”

Philip Yancey

Conflicts: Dysfunctional. Abusive. Boundaryless. They can happen to anyone including Jesus followers who daily spend purposeful time with God through reading the scriptures, in-depth Bible study and consistent prayer. You may be a godly person and a good neighbor, boss, employee, co-worker, parent, spouse, child, sibling, relative or friend finding yourself in an unwanted and uncalled for difficult relationship or circumstance.

NPD 3

I have had relationships in which I interceded for the other person through prayer by asking Jesus to heal them of their dysfunction, mental illness or sin. Most scriptural records of Jesus healing a person were instant, complete and permanent. Even though the person I prayed for had not asked for the help or healing and I could not physically take them to Jesus; I could spiritually bring them before Jesus.

I previously witnessed Jesus provide in ways that seemed impossible to me relationally, emotionally, spiritually, physically and even legally. He is so like that. When I have been at my wit’s end believing there was no possible way, no hope, no healing, no relief, no safety to overcome an obstacle; Jesus did the impossible. My mind had not previously conceived what He chose to do on my behalf. It was so out of the box that only He could have done it. There lies the beauty; Jesus has no box and I cannot put Him in one. Whoop — whoop!

That being exclaimed, I must also add that I have known Jesus long enough to realize not all prayers are fulfilled the way I wish, in my timing, or sometimes they may not be answered in my lifetime and I know I’ll have to wait until heaven to see how it is eventually answered. My heart may sometimes doubt Jesus heard my prayer but my mind always knows better. He hears, remembers and acts. Always.

If you use Pinterest, the online bulletin/pin board, you have likely read quotes about trusting your heart: “There is no instinct like that of the heart.”

“Trust your heart. What is true feels good. What is false causes doubt.” – Monica De Liz.

“Always listen to your heart.”

“When you can’t believe your eyes you can always trust your heart.”

“Trust your heart and you will be with the one you love” -Aunt Wu.

Here is what trumps all these quotes: “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9 (NIV). Our hearts need to be established in Christ first and then scripture tells us not to trust in our heart, but with all of our heart, trust in God. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;” Proverbs 3:5 (NIV).

I knew Jesus was capable of healing the person I was praying for. Scripture told me of His great power and; moreover, scripture states the power is for us. “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,” Ephesians 1:18-20 (NIV). I have longed for this kind of power to be exerted into the heart, soul, mind and strength of someone I knew on multiple occasions. The bottom line was they had to want it and believe Him for it. When they did not —I was not quick to give up on them. I’m stubborn like that.

Often when I sense God has released me from relationally reaching out to someone and has shown me the exit door from a dysfunctional, abusive or boundaryless relationship; I usually look for a detour and go back for the person. I find myself wondering, “Have I done everything I can?” I do not want to question if there was possibly something else that would have worked. I continue to pray and ask if there is please, another way. I must know I did everything I could and when I look back; have no regrets. If I am going to error I can live with erring in faith but I could not live with erring in what was convenient. I am capable of missing the proverbial boat when it comes to discerning the voice or the will of God and I want to make certain I clearly understand His heart and will for the present concern.

On the other hand, I have a history of allowing anger (toxicity) to be taken out on me so when it comes up in a relationship it feels natural but I know God is calling me to recognize and respond to it in a biblical way. This is anything but easy for me.

NPD 2

Sometimes I imagine I have a flashing sign on my forehead that reads, “Easy to Manipulate: Free Test Try” or perchance “Boundaryless: Trespass without caution.” God keeps the lessons in these areas coming at a steady pace and He is determined to teach me how to soar by handling the issue without becoming nervous, shaky, lightheaded, heart pounding out of my chest or; as in my most recent lesson, feeling like Icy Hot was rubbed on my chest. I never experienced this sensation during a difficult confrontation and fortunately was able to laugh at myself when the conversation had finished. Icy Hot — seriously — I never knew!

NPD 7

Thankfully, God is a patient teacher who does not give me a failing grade. He just keeps teaching me new applications and giving me new situations in which to work them out. God has also given me a godly and humorous private tutor who happens to be an Ace when it comes to practical application. God is very serious about me learning this lesson and passing on to you what I learn. I must add that these lessons are not easy and are sometimes painful. To quote Beth Moore from a lesson in Daniel: Lives of Integrity, “You want to learn this lesson in the classroom and not on a field trip.” I imagine I have more field trips logged than the average student.

NPD 5

See previous Toxic Tuesday posts on toxic relationships, or what the Bible refers to as relationships with fools. Until then; if you, like me, have a flashing billboard on your forehead — turn it off! And keep clear of Icy Hot.

NPD 9

Happy Hour: 6/25/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

I can’t think of one time in my life that I was changed (for the better) with harsh words, anger, or with any form of ugliness from another. The only deep permanent changes have been through thoughts, words, and actions from the kindness, gentleness, mercy, grace…and mostly…love of others who first felt this from another themselves, and passed it on to me!! Praise His Name for these people in my life!!  :-) I have been set free by LOVE! :-)

MORE ABOUT MICHELLE: CLICK HERE

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A Delivery Room Perspective: Comedian Michael Jr.

Listen.

Open your eyes…

Toxic Tuesday: I Am Known As a Liar

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Today I am reminiscing of the road I lingered on for several years to see my former husband go to prison for sexual crimes against children.

For more on this read: Reversal of Destiny, Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin, Church Leadership Supporting Sexual Offenders-Part 1Church Leadership Supporting Sexual Offenders-Part 2and Church Leadership Supporting Sexual Offenders-Part 3

Sixteen years of anticipating justice was a long wait and the only reason I kept my sanity was that the Lord’s great love endures forever. And I understood His voice in my heart, soul, mind and strength telling me to trust Him because He was working. I was to keep silent, except for prayer, and wait on His sovereign timing.

God did use other people to stand up for the little children but when a defendant suffers from a narcissistic personality you can bet your bottom dollar most people will believe and defend the accused. Why? Narcissists are the best of the best actors and liars.

A few weeks ago I shared in, My Destructive Marriage, about a friend who knew the extreme depravity of my husband and yet was not able to come to terms with it. I posted the letter of rebuttal I received from this friend.

Well, George (from My Destructive Marriage) wasn’t the only person who didn’t believe me. Truth be told; I lost most of my closest friends and dozens of ministry friends. While my soon to be ex-husband made his rounds to secure believability and support; the Lord gave me His peace, provision, a supportive family, and some of the most amazing female friends for which I ever asked.

I had to live with the reputation of being a liar; of lying about my husband because that is what he told anyone and everyone who would listen. You may know the saying “People believe the first thing they hear.” This is especially true when it is the only thing they hear.

Here is another letter.

Please note as you read the below letter that the association did not bother to tell their supporters the charges for which my ex-husband was arrested. I think the supporters deserved the whole truth so they could make an informed decision about continued financial and prayer support.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

In past years you have read of Evangelist S in our newsletters. S joined as an Overseas Evangelist several years back and served honorably and successfully winning many souls to Christ. S was not full time, he was part time. His full time service was as the Minister of a Church in Independence, Kansas, where he preached and was loved by that congregation for over 6 years. One year and a half ago S was suddenly arrested and jailed in Independence and he has remained in jail ever since. Many of us are grieved because we believe S is 100% innocent of the charge that has been made against him. We are asking all Christians to pray for Evangelist S. He is your brother in Christ. He was baptized as a boy at the County Christian Church in Kansas, where his father and mother were among the founding members of that church. S was also ordained to the ministry by the Elders of the County Christian Church after graduating from Bible College. S’s trial will take place at the courthouse in Independence, Kansas, the first week of August. Several of us who live in Joplin and surrounding towns plan to be present for the trial and will be in constant prayer that God will lead the Defense Attorney to accurately present S’s side of the story. Please pray for S, pray for his wife, pray for the Judge and for each member of the jury. Pray that S may be acquitted so he can continue his effective work as an overseas evangelist. Thinking about the Apostle Paul. During S’s incarceration I have often written to him and he has written many letters to me. Receiving a letter from S in jail is very similar to reading Paul’s Prison Epistles in the New Testament. I want to share with you one of S’s letters:

“Dear R and E, Thank you for the wonderful and encouraging letter I received from you. I so much appreciate the news of our evangelists’ work around the world. I am keeping these in my thoughts and prayers—and hope to join you in the work again soon. How could I possibly express how thankful I am to both of you for watching out for, comforting, and encouraging my wife through these terribly difficult times? May an abundance of grace be credited to your account. (Philippians 4:16-18). Jail has exposed me to men who have engaged in the worst of all behaviors. Many brag about their addictions to drugs and sex—the most lewd descriptions I have been forced to hear. It is sickening to hear it day after day. The word to best describe it is TORTURE! The good news is that one-by-one, they have come to me and asked questions about the Bible. There are moments of shame and despair. I pray throughout the day for all of them—for the Lord to reach their hearts.

One man, convinced that “all men are equal,” (not believing that anyone was better than him)  reacted violently toward me when I said, “Yes, I believe there are some who are better than others.” I used examples like Noah and Job and Enoch and Elijah. He nearly hit me he was so angry; he said that I was Satanic. Then after telling him that I loved him, I left the room. Later that day, I handed him a Bible reference…”Consider others more important than yourselves…” (Philippians 3:2). It amazes me how so many do not esteem others beyond themselves. Needless to say, there is little to no respect for authority. I have always had “heroes in the faith”. These men refuse to consider anyone as being better than themselves. While I understand that “all have sinned” and “all need the Savior”, there are many who are “walking in a manner worthy of their calling.” We are to “Give honor to whom honor is due.” These are foreign concepts; they demand respect, but often forget to give it. The hardships are discouraging, and sometimes I lose hope—but my faith is strong. I cannot deny the Lord’s word, nor can I deny His faithfulness. Thank you again for all you are doing to help us in this difficult situation. I believe the Lord will deliver me home and restore my joy. I love you both beyond words, S, Psalm 103”

OUR APPEAL IS THAT A LARGE ARMY OF PRAYER WARRIORS WILL SURROUND S WITH YOUR PRAYERS TO GOD FOR HIS ACQUITTAL.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

A friend messaged me as an alert that this letter was circulating to all the world-wide prayer and financial supporters of this evangelistic association.

Weeks later, a different friend, called to tell me they had spoken with the man who wrote the letter. They pleaded with the man to step back, pray about it, research narcissistic personality disorder, and allow the law to do its job because this arrest was overdue, necessary justice and future protection for innocent children.

The evangelist found my friend’s remarks impossible to believe. He said he knew the defendant intimately from traveling the world with him on mission trips and had spent much time in prayer with him. He would consider it but doubted what he was being told by my friend.

I would like to ask this man, “How did you think I felt? I was his wife. I loved him, supported him, was intimate with him, believed him, and listened to him preach, pray and lead people to Christ week after week. It took years to rectify my heart and mind with facts—years!”

This letter literally made me sick to my stomach for multiple reasons.

This evangelist later attended the trial and the sentencing as a supporter of the defendant.

Twenty three plus years ago I knew this evangelist, and his wife, from North American Christian Conventions that I attended with my then husband; the defendant. We would visit with them at their exhibit table and eat meals together with our mutual friends; Dewey, Barbara and their daughter and son-in-law who were close friends of mine.

Did the evangelist and his wife ever wonder what happened to me? Why didn’t they inquire about why the defendant was divorced? Did they not find it odd that he had no contact with, or rights to, his biological child? Did they not remember that far back? Why did they not have questions or concerns since this man would be traveling with them to foreign countries for the purpose of working in orphanages?

I saw the evangelist’s wife stare at me multiple times in court. I wondered if she remembered me, if perhaps she thought I was an absolutely wicked woman, or if she was trying to make sense of the difference between the defendant’s first wife and second wife. I held out little hope that everything was adding up to her and she now realized the defendant’s guilt.

There is NO understanding this without understanding the influence and believability of a narcissist.

“Though I am glad this predator was finally caught and removed from having more opportunities to abuse little ones, I am sickened by the fact that the faith community has embraced him and advocates for his innocence. I have no doubt these individuals will one day be called into account for their failure to protect the vulnerable as they were too busy protecting evil. So glad that justice finally arrived…” ~Boz @ G.R.A.C.E.

The moral of my story is this: Narcissists are nearly impossible to identify. This is maddening to any woman who finds herself married to one because when she finally finds the courage to tell the nightmare she has lived through; very few people believe her since the narcissistic husband has hidden his real self to the world while letting it all hang out at home. The extended family knows, the wife knows, the kids know. The sad aspect is the wife is considered the crazy unstable person by many friends for exposing her reality when in fact, the opposite is true; the husband is unstable. Narcissists mirror all accusations toward the accuser, framing the victim as the perpetrator. Read more about this aspect of NPD here..

To this day I have people who believe I am a liar and who still believe I lied about the reasons for which I divorced my husband. This—after his conviction which led to being sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for 25 years. I can live with it because I know who I am, I know Who loves me, and He who loves me knows the truth. Nothing else matters.

This article is for the women out there in cyber space living a similar nightmare. Many of you arrive at GiveMe Chocolate from countries all over the globe looking for answers and help for your toxic marriage. You are not crazy, you are not alone, and you are not wrong. You are a woman of God!

“I am a woman of God

Redeemed by Jesus Christ

Loved, pursued and chosen

Equipped with words of life

Clothed in strength and dignity

Commissioned here and now

Gifted by the Spirit

Forgiven and unbound

Blessed is she who believed”

~Living Proof Live with Beth Moore

Click below to listen to the song version and commit it to memory. Next time you feel crazy or like you might lose your sanity at any moment; sing the song and remind yourself who you are according to your creator and the lover of your soul.

Click here to download this song to your computer from the Living Proof blog.

Happy Hour: 6/18/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

Dear Heavenly Father, today I lift up the people in my life and the people in their lives who are in need of a miracle that only You can provide. Some are in pain physically, some are hurting beyond what they believe they can endure emotionally, financially, and even spiritually. Even people who are not in a season of pain, frustrations, and testing know those who are…Please Lord, would You extent Your Loving kindness and Grace over them all today. Will You bless them with Your Presence and Your Love in this moment. I ask Lord that Your Peace would overwhelm them. I bring them to You…to Your Healing arms, so that You may touch them in these places of hurt, pain, frustration, doubt, etc. I also pray that You would bless me in this very same way…and extent to me the strength, love, courage, insight, understanding, and endurance to “be there” for anyone I can be…showing Your Love and Light like others have so graciously done for me in my life.

2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 “I will comfort you with My everlasting encouragement.”

Nahum 1:7 “I will be your safe place in difficult times.”

Psalm 27:1 “I am your light and salvation, the strength in your life.”

‪#‎GodisSOgood  :-)  #‎thankfulHecarriesourburdensonHisshoulders :-)

MORE ABOUT MICHELLE: CLICK HERE

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a

crazymaking

Self-Medicating Due to Crazymakers: Free Rx

Are the crazymakers in your life getting the best of you today; or this year for that matter? You know who I’m talking about. The one who makes your business everyone’s business (gossip and/or betraying a trust). The one who lies about you; perhaps to your face (This one shocks me every time. As if I don’t know they are lying about me…and they think I’m going to believe the non-truth about myself.) The one who verbally shreds you, lies to you, goes behind your back, or says unkind words; then says, “I never said that.” The one whose negative outlook on life and people is hurting you emotionally, spiritually and possibly physically through your health. Stress is a HUGE health factor.

Here is your medicine! Wash your mind with it. It will change the way you think, the way you respond, and the way you feel. Do you want the prescription? I thought so!

I suggest writing this medicine on note cards and keeping it handy throughout the day.

2 Timothy 17

Yes! Power, love and a sound mind—I’ll take it. If someone is messing with your mind they are not sound. God does not require you to tolerate it.

Romans 12 2

Don’t allow any person to place a pattern on you and tell you that’s who you are or all you can be. Invite the Holy Spirit to renew, reeducate, and redirect your mind. Healthy stuff!

2 Cor 10 5

We don’t have to succumb to personal attacks or to our weaknesses. We fight (demolish) through faith, hope, love and the power of prayer; specifically praying God’s word out loud over the argument or pretension.

Matthew 11 29 30

Remember that God the Father, Jesus the son, and the comforter, Holy Spirit are tender and loving when teaching us. Anything else is from the enemy. God will not use their nastiness, meanness or lies to bring you back to Him; to teach you the lesson He has for you. You may need to learn how to set boundaries with people and that will be a good lesson, but a crazymakers treatment of you is not God’s chastisement of you.

Colossians 2 2a

Yep, God builds up. Satan comes to steal, kill and destroy. Jesus came that we may have life and have it abundantly.

Phil 4 8

Do NOT give your thought life over to the negative thinkers. Do you tend to be like a hampster running on its little wheel—the thoughts keep turning over and over in your mind? Stop it! Jump off! Give it to God and focus on His truth.

1 John 4 18

Insecurities are founded in fear. Fearful people may place their insecurities on you. This is not from God. Keep a sound mind. Don’t jump on the hampster wheel with the negative thoughts. Allow God to wash your mind with His words and remember His yoke is easy, and His burden is light.

Psalm 118 14

Tell it, the ungodly belief, “You will have to take that up with my Father. Depart from me in Jesus’ name.” You have the scriptural authority to do it; use it! I hope this gives you a new application for Psalm 118:14.

Psalm 139 17

No thought, opinion or word spoken over you matters. Don’t EVEN consider the negative, crazymaking words. Ask God for His truth, His opinion, His thoughts—then thank Him for them and act on them.

Elisabeth Elliot (1926-2015)

I didn’t know her but I adored her heart.

Through her books, radio programs and daily devotions delivered to my email inbox she taught me about purposeful living and being a strong woman of integrity and godliness.

A quote by Elisabeth Elliot has encouraged me in this season of life while raising and homeschooling my children.

The routines of housework 

and of mothering may be seen as a kind of death,

and it is appropriate

that they should be,

for they offer the chance, 

day after day,

to lay down one’s life for others.

~Elisabeth Elliot

Elisabeth Elliot (née Howard; born December 21, 1926) died this morning (June 15, 2015) at the age of 88.

She was a beautiful woman of whom the world was not worthy.

Here is her brief testimony, told in her typically understated way: READ MORE: Elisabeth Elliot (1926-2015)

E Elliot quote

Elisabeth Elliot

Michelle Teague collage

HAPPY HOUR THURSDAYS AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day of work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Ahhhh…that place where you don’t have ANY answers…that place in your heart, circumstances, or other person(s) in your life…you can’t “fix”. You’ve prayed until the skin on your knees is “callused”. Then, you hear that still small Voice say…”keep praying”…”keep coming to Me”…and even though you know somewhere deep inside it/they (whatever) may never change (especially the way you would like)…You keep running to The Only One…because you KNOW…He is THE only True Changer…even if in the end…it’s your own heart, and IF (and when) He chooses to change anything else…that answer will just be the cherries on top.  ;-)   ‪#‎changemyheartohGod‪  #‎Yourwillalwaysbedone   ‪#‎letgoandletGod  :-)

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Toxic Tuesday: My Destructive Marriage

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My last Toxic Tuesday post, How to Love a Woman In a Destructive Marriage, detailed how to respond to a friend who confides in you about abuse taking place in her home.

Unfortunately for some women—friends, family and church members don’t believe her story. After all, many abusers are wonderful at playing the devoted victim! I believe this is true because many abusers suffer from narcissistic personality disorder and consider themselves special. They are not held to the same standards, morals or laws as the general population. Even when caught, if they admit to doing it, they insist it is not who they are. It’s a twisted mind for sure!

After nine years in my own destructive marriage I finally told my parents, and my husband’s and my ministry mentor, what had been going on in my home since shortly after I said, “I do.” No one was surprised. The mentor told me that he had believed for some time now that my husband was mentally ill but he hadn’t said anything to me since he didn’t know if I was aware or if I would believe him.

Why did I take so long to tell, you may be asking.

Good Christian women don’t tell.

Good wives don’t talk poorly about their husbands. You never tell your family because that will incite them to not like him—and they might encourage you to leave him. We are taught at Bible college, in the church and by godly older women that we never speak poorly of our husbands; especially when you are in the ministry—which we were.

We are to encourage our husbands, respect our husbands, forgive them, pray for them, hope in them, help them, and make love a daily action even when we don’t feel like it. Be intentional about how we respond in love; not frustration or anger. Don’t dwell on the negative; concentrate on the good parts. Be the one to set the tone for the atmosphere in your home to keep it positive and productive. Let go of pride.

Don’t compare your marriage to anyone else’s marriage. Don’t compare your attitude or actions to his. Pray that God will change your heart and through that, improve the difficulties in your marriage.

Care, adore, smile, kiss passionately, forgive, forgive again, be gracious, listen, compliment him, comfort him, and be content. Stay…always stay the course—it WILL pay off. It will!  It does not matter how you feel; what matters is how you respond. With God, all things are possible!

Here is the catch—God gives us free choice and your spouse has a choice in the outcome. The above does not apply in an abusive marriage or a marriage plagued with unfaithfulness.

Through the advice of my mentor I confided in one local friend, a long distance friend who would help my mentor confront my husband in hope of reconciliation and healing; as well as, tell a friend/spiritual leader of ours and our mentors from a former ministry who was very concerned about my marriage, concerned about my husband, concerned about me and wanted the very best for my daughter. It wasn’t easy telling a single detail. I didn’t know if they would believe me, tell on me to my husband, or walk away from the relationship.

Two of these close friends who knew all the ugly details of the abuse and walked the road with me for a time after telling them of my destructive, abusive and unsafe marriage, still attempted to silence me from speaking truth and achieving safety. I can’t speak for what their heart motive was; perhaps my truth made them uncomfortable. Did it hit too close to home? Was the evil, messed up truth about my spouse unbelievable? Had the narcissist won them over? Was legalism involved?

One of my friends told me, “I’ve prayed about this and God will remove his hand of protection from you if you go through with this divorce. You are taking yourself and your daughter out from underneath God’s covering, blessing, provision and protection. You are not supposed to do this and you will be sinning against God if you go through with it.”

I thanked her for her concern and told her I would pray about it more before finalizing the paperwork; however, I had only taken these measures after prolonged prayer, in depth Bible study, extensive counseling, and out of obedience to the Lord. I felt like God had held my hand while I skimmed the surface of hell begging my husband to return to me. He refused. In fact, during our time of a therapeutic separation when he was supposed to be seeking professional help and healing so our family could be reconciled; he instead took a preaching ministry and moved away. Because after all, God had called him to preach first and foremost and he was following God’s calling on His life. Good-bye to his wife and daughter—we were in the way of his career. I had spent the last two years refusing to seek another ministry because he needed spiritual guidance and serious professional emotional, psychological and psychiatric help. He decided to no longer wait for my permission; he left and moved on without me.

The other friend, George (name changed to protect his identity), whose own wife was delivered from an abusive marriage through the death of the abuser (first husband), wrote me an email after I gave him the latest report I received from my husband’s psychiatrist. I received discouraging news at every psychologist’s, neuro-psychologist’s and psychiatrist’s appointment I attended with him. But on this given day I heard the final blow that sealed the fate of reconciliation.

Unfaithfulness I had forgiven and mental-illness I could live with if he would acknowledge it and seek help and stay on his medications but hearing, “He has started down the slippery slope of pedophilia from which there is not return” was the death blow and I knew our daughter would never be safe. Before this day I kept thinking he was just mentally ill with an addiction to pornography and with help he could get better.

My hope for my husband’s healing was over. I asked the doctor a few questions and sought clarity but the doctor was clear, serious, and gave me his professional opinion about my daughter’s safety.

George had asked to be kept updated on doctor appointments, progress and prayer needs but the pedophilia information proved to be, unbeknownst to  me, the last straw. Here is the reply I received via email:

Carolyn-

I understand that life has been difficult for you. But please don’t make it more so by continually pleading your case in the court of public opinion. Whenever I hear from you it is a constant stream of bashing your husband. I’ve not said anything before, but now I must. Your husband is my friend. I know he is not perfect, but then again neither are you or I. It’s almost as if you’ve been building a case against him ever since the first of hint of problems last year. Your husband has always been different. Always. He was when we were in college. He was when you fell in love with him and married him. He is now. He could make us laugh like no one else. His nice guy looks and golden vocal cords along with his love for God and the church made him a joy to be around. All he ever wanted was to succeed for God. That dream appears to be a long shot now. But give him some dignity. Stop confessing his sins for him. You said in the email that you have been able to help some women whose husbands have left them, as if that is your situation.  Carolyn…he didn’t leave you.

If you made a mistake marrying him, say, “I made a mistake. I left him because I couldn’t take him.” Don’t write husband bashing emails. What good is that doing??? Are people lining ups saying, “Poor Carolyn,” and that’s helping you? If so, then something’s wrong there.

In love (for all three of you),

George

To this day I cannot imagine how I could have made it through this time in life without my godly ministry mentor and his wife.

Sobbing, I called them and asked if I had been inappropriate with the details I had given about my marriage and my husband’s issues. They said I had not been and then asked me to read the email from George.

After hearing George’s reply they recommended I stop all contact with him; immediately. They were dumbfounded at how he could feel this way after seeing and hearing first hand, my husband’s delusional and irrational behavior and his denial of needing help for his problems and mental illness. All they could guess was that the classic textbook narcissist had struck again; a professional liar and actor who had won over another pawn in his game.

As for, “His love for God and the church made him a joy to be around,” investigators from three different law enforcement agencies have contacted me through the years investigating allegations of child sexual abuse by my ex-husband. All these investigators have said they believe his pedophilia goes back to his teen years and that he purposefully chose the ministry as a way to access child victims from a place of trusted leadership; pastor. The investigators also believe the list of child victims is well into the hundreds but because he targets very young children, who are mostly too young to tell, he stayed under the radar. Until last summer…his reign of terror is over.

No, my husband did not file the separation papers, I did; but make no mistake…he was the one who left in every way except for the paperwork. For him to file the papers would potentially ruin any hope of his future in ministry and preaching. He HAD to be portrayed as the victim.

Had I listened to George and my other local friend, my daughter and I would most likely be dead; at the very least we would have been further abused with my daughter suffering the greatest through it.

God allowed, encouraged and provided a way out of this marriage along with Biblical grounds for divorce.

I hope this testimony brings awareness to women who desperately need help, friendship and love while they seek safety and support during an unsafe and/or difficult marriage.

Be a blessing. Pray scripture over them; in person. Offer to watch their children so they can see a Christian counselor, run an errand, or just need an hour to be alone. Invite them over for lunch. Take their children to the park for an hour. Give her a gift certificate for a massage. Drop a bag of groceries at the door. Or head over to Give Her Wings ministry website to find out how you can help. There is a , “Books we like” tab for suggestions on books that would make a great gift for a hurting wife, and it would be one way you could show her you understand and care.

You could not plan for this
No, there was no silhouette
Up against the pink horizon
To warn you of the hit
But you absorbed it all with grace
Like a child you spoke of faith unmoved
That holds onto you

This thing is going to try to break you
But it doesn’t have to
You’re showing us how
This thing is going to bend and shape you
But He won’t let it take you/You know it somehow
This thing is not going to break you

You could take your loss
You could hide away from us
With your grief lassoed around you
But you’re laying it in the sun
And you stare straight into the light
You say you’d rather go blind than look away
What can I say?

This thing is going to try to break you
But it doesn’t have to
You’re showing us how
This thing is going to bend and shape you
But He won’t let it take you
You know it somehow
This thing is not going to break you
This thing is not going to break you
This thing is not going to break you

Happy Hour: 6/4/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

One time, when one of our girls was younger, she was headed out the door, and I felt strongly she was leaving unprepared for where she was headed. For a few minutes I worried,…”What about this? Shouldn’t she take this?”

There’s no way she had enough…whatever I could worry about…I worried about.

Then, I felt The Lord whisper in my heart…”I have everything she will need or ever need.”

He spoke so sweetly and SO very confidently that it penetrated my entire heart and mind. After that, I felt like I “saw” Him actually get in the car with her…and hold a “bag” up with a BIG smile…making sure I knew He had it all taken care of…and He did.

I went to sleep that night with a peace that surpassed my understanding, and slept like a baby. :-)  Sometimes I have to remind myself…Yes, He is my Savior, my Protector, my Provider, my Everything, but He is that for ALL who trust in Him. I am no one’s savior! That is for sure!!! I am terrible at it! ;-)  No one cares more for those I love than Him. I am beyond grateful I can rest in that today, and everyday! :-)

 ‪#‎takealoadoff ‪ #‎Heiscloserthanourbreath  ‪#‎HeknowsexactlywhatweneedALLthetime  :-)

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Happy Hour: 5/28/2015

HAPPY HOUR, THURSDAYS, AT 5:00 P.M.—Kick back after a hard day’s work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

Michelle Teague collage

Several years ago… I was dealing with a particular issue, where I felt like, I was in a type of “bondage.”  As I prayed to Jesus about these things and asked for help…He showed me a picture of my ankles. I could see the chains so clearly (ugh)…They were extremely thick, ridiculously heavy, and covered in rust. As I looked up at the Lord, He asked, “What do you see?”

I said, “Those chains I have been telling you over and over about! That’s what I see!”

He said, “No, right now, as you look at Me…what do you see?”

“Oh…well…I see You. I see Your eyes…I see Your abounding love, total acceptance, approval, and delight in me.”

He then said, “Keep your focus on Me, and those chains will fade, eventually falling right off. There will be a time, you will even forget about them…like Father God and I already have. By you focusing on those chains… you are, essentially, giving them a power over you and your life. By changing your focus on Me, the One who took those chains to The Cross, and completely dealt with them forever…you actually receive healing, and the “power” they held is broken.”

It took some “practice” in getting this Truth from my head into my heart, but over time…my heart “got it!” The chains began to come undone, and as He said, I even forgot about this struggle in my life. It was a process. However, I was determined that any and every time this issue raised its head…I would turn to God and His Word…I would change my focus…therefore changing my life! I have been “healed” of stuff immediately, and in an instant! (which was REALLY amazing and cool! :-) BUT most of the things that have changed for the better, and the places where I have grown and been healed, have been a process of taking my eyes off of “self” and placing them on Him!

Gratefully and honestly, I cannot think of a time, in my personal life, this hasn’t happened. God did the “work”…our “work” is focusing and resting in that fact :-) 

‪#‎HereallydiditALL ‪ #‎welivewherewefocus‪  #‎mayneedsomenewglasses ;-)  :-)

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