6 But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him.
7 “But go, tell His disciples–and Peter–that He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him, as He said to you.” Mark 16:6,7 (NKJV)
By Bro. John L. Cash, “Country Preacher Dad”
At first glance, that such an ancient author is my favorite constant companion sounds incredibly boring. But the writings of Brother Martin fill my heart with spiritual light and unspeakable joy because his writings are so very real; He is humble and yet profound, deep and yet earthy and humorous.
Though he lived so long ago, he understands the blessings and struggles of the Christian life—which are the same now as back then. (Believe it or not, Susan and Spencer have begun to share my love of this pastor after stumbling upon my books—after thinking me to be somewhat of a crackpot for so many years. I’m expecting Seth to jump on the bandwagon next.)
Throughout my adult life, the volumes of Luther have always been on my nightstand and are my nightly devotional reading before I turn out the light. Susan always says, “You love Martin Luther more than you could ever possibly love me.” I always give her the same answer: “Not more, honey. Just different.” You see, in my estimation, no one understands and expresses the beauty of our faith better than Martin Luther.
Every Easter I find myself at a loss for words—I just don’t have words good enough to express what I feel about what God did for us on that happy resurrection morning. Since I can’t find the words I need, I’m borrowing them from Martin Luther’s prayer on Easter Sunday, 1533. I hope his words make you as happy as they make me. (The formatting and emphasis is mine.)
Who through the death of Thy Son hast destroyed sin and death,
And through His resurrection hast restored innocence and eternal life
That we, being delivered from the power of the devil,
May live in Thy kingdom,
Grant that we may believe this with our whole heart
And steadfast in this faith, ever praise and thank Thee,
Through Thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Grant, dear Lord God,
That the blessed Day of Thy holy advent may come soon,
So that we may be redeemed
From this bad, wicked world
(The devil’s dominion)
And freed from the terrible plague that we must suffer
From without and within
(From wicked people and our own conscience.)
Do Thou dispatch this old maggot sack
That we may finally get a different body,
Which is not full of sin,
Inclined to unchasteness and to everything evil
(As this present one is)
But one that is redeemed from all bodily and spiritual misery
And made like unto Thy glorious body, dear Lord Jesus Christ,
That we may at last come to our glorious redemption.
(From our house to your house, have a wonderful Easter. Take time to feel the joy. Jesus Christ is risen, indeed! Allelujah!)
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 28 years being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. (On week days has a desk-job at a public school, and until recently taught Latin on closed-circuit-television.) He and his lovely wife, Susan, live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church. Their kids include Spencer (age 22), his wife Madeline (age 22), and Seth (age 19).
I’ve heard horror stories about how some spouses constantly butt heads with their in-laws. And I’m lucky because I don’t have those war stories. I love my husband’s family and he loves mine, and we’re blessed to get along the way we do.
But there’s one tiny bone of contention between my husband and my mother, and I land squarely in the middle of the debate. Perhaps you can be the judge. The question revolves around the proper loading of a dishwasher, and the issue comes up after we have Sunday lunch together and start the clean-up process.
In this corner is my mother, who has never once loaded a truly dirty dish into any dishwasher – hers or mine. She washes and rinses the dishes first and then puts them into the dishwasher for what she calls “sterilization.” In her mind, the dishwasher is an extra safety check to ensure the dishes have received “a good scald” and are therefore germ-free.
But rest assured you could safely eat from any plate she puts into the dishwasher well before she runs the wash cycle because it has already been scrubbed, rinsed and examined with a careful eye. She treats forks and spoons like a surgeon treats scalpels and retractors.
In the other corner is my husband, who has never once loaded anything resembling a clean dish into any dishwasher. He, like many men, takes the name “dishwasher” literally. If the machine is supposed to wash the dishes, then by all means, “let’s let it wash the dishes!” he insists. After all, there are other things to do and Sunday afternoon naps to be taken. Why waste time scrubbing lasagna remnants off of plates when we’ve invested in this expensive piece of machinery that’s supposed to do it for us?
But the debate doesn’t end there. When my mom loads the dishwasher, she’s careful to leave plenty of perimeter space around each and every dish and utensil. She worries that if the plates and bowls don’t have enough breathing room, they’ll be blocked off from all that hot, sanitizing water.
Tom, on the other hand, has a theory about how many dirty dishes will fit into the dishwasher. It goes something like this: “The number of dirty dishes in the kitchen is the same number that will safely fit into the dishwasher at any one time.” In his mind, the dirty dishes of two people or 20 people can and will fit into the dishwasher, if you just put your mind to it and pack them in there efficiently.
Remember that old commercial about how there’s “always room for Jell-O”? Tom applies that same logic to cups and plates, too. I must admit he is a master when it comes to finding that one last nook or cranny of available space.
A few weeks ago, as Tom squeezed yet another cup into what my mother deemed an overly full dishwasher, she actually put down her scrub brush, shook her head and said, “I just can’t watch this.” She had to avert her eyes from the horror of all those cups packed into the top rack like so many dirty sardines.
My philosophy is simple. Don’t criticize the cleaning method of anyone – mother or husband – who helps with the dishes because that criticism might dampen their willingness to help in the future.
But I can tell you this: When I unload the dishwasher, I can always tell which one of those two people loaded it, and I’m reminded of the opening line to that famous Dickens novel: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”
Gwen Rockwood is a mom to three great kids, wife to one cool guy, a newspaper columnist and co-owner of nwaMotherlode.com. To read previously published installments of The Rockwood Files, click here. To check out Gwen’s new book, “Reporting Live from the Laundry Pile: The Rockwood Files Collection,” click HERE.
Photo credit: Lisa Mac Photography
Our foodie friend, Ceri Wilkin (who blogs at Recipe Doodle) sent us this awesome recipe for truffle eggs. Aren’t they beautiful?
Ceri said these adorable eggs are fun (and easy) to make — plus they taste delicious!
1/4 cup cream
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon light corn syrup
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons nutella
1/2 pound white candy coating disks
5 to 6 drops of blue food coloring
1/2 to 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
Directions: In a saucepan, bring the cream, butter and corn syrup to a boil. Add chocolate and nutella and remove from the heat (do not stir). Let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk until combined.
Transfer to a small bowl, cover and refrigerate for 45 to 60 minutes or until thickened, stirring every 15 minutes.
Shape 1 tablespoon of chocolate mixture into an egg. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining mixture. Refrigerate until firm, about 5 to 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a microwave-safe bowl, melt candy coating, stir until smooth. Stir in food coloring. Dip eggs into cane coating, allow excess to drip off. Return to baking sheet and immediately sprinkle with coffee granules. Let stand until set.
Recipe adapted from Taste of Home, Easter Recipe Cards, April 2012
More about Ceri: I am a wife, mother and recipe follower. For years I have tackled one new recipe a day – some are fabulous, some are not. In a past life I was an Occupational Therapist, Rugby and Netball player, Belly Dancer, lesson taker of golf, tennis and wine appreciation. My Husband owns Pizzerias, my Father was a butcher, my Mother a caterer, my older Brother makes the absolute best birthday cakes and desserts you will ever taste, my younger Brother owns restaurants in New Zealand and my kids love to eat. (Find more of Ceri’s great recipes at Recipe Doodle)
I’ve learned that, as long as you have really good parental controls on your home computer system, your kids can find some awesome stuff on YouTube. My oldest two kids have introduced me to some very funny stuff, including Glove & Boots and this new one I’m sharing with you today that’s called Bad Lip Reading.
Apparently, there’s an entire channel devoted to Bad Lip Reading with readings of everything from movies to political ads to music videos. And I’ve gotta admit… some of it really is as funny as my 12-year-old son says it is. For our fellow Twilight fans, here’s a bad lip reading of Edward and Bella. Enjoy and Happy Friday, mamas!
Only a few days to go before Easter! This week we’re gearing up by talking about some of our favorite Spring and Easter-related topics. Join in the discussion by listening to our radio segments, The Mamas on Magic, each weekday on Magic 107.9.
You can hear them around 7:45 a.m. Monday through Friday on Magic 107.9.
If you miss one, just click the LEFT side of the audio bars below and listen to them here!