Sunday, October 21, 2018

Becoming a Christian Soldier - HELMET OF SALVATION

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo SundaySoldierHelmet_zpszpfcffs2.jpg
Becoming a Christian Soldier - HELMET OF SALVATION
 Today we continue learning about "Becoming A Christian Soldier" and learning how to "put on the full armor of God" (Ephesians 6:11) - Now, I have to be very clear - I am NOT talking about becoming a physical soldier and I am NOT saying that you should go out and physically fight (although I appreciate and respect anybody who has served or is serving in our army, navy or air force).  What I'm talking about in this series is on a spiritual level.  If you look at Ephesians, chapter 6 verse 12: "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood..." that is the exact point - we are not talking about a physical fight and we are not talking about physical training.  Becoming a Christian soldier is all about our relationship with God;  about our spiritual training and about our spiritual self.

A few months ago we learned about who our enemy is and then most recently we learned about the SHIELD OF FAITH.
Click HERE to read INTRODUCTION to this series.
Click HERE to read "STRENGTH FROM GOD"
Click HERE to read "4 Ways To STAND"
Click HERE to read "BELT OF TRUTH"
Click HERE to read "BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS"
Click HERE to read "FEET FITTED WITH THE GOSPEL OF PEACE"
Click HERE to read "SHIELD OF FAITH"

Our God is all powerful, all knowing, He is our Protector and Provider - He would never throw us into a battle without fully equipping us first.  Today we continue learning about the "full armor of God" and specifically "the Helmet of Salvation.

It is interesting to me that there is an order to the verses in Ephesians chapter 6 - first we must prepare, train and draw from God's power "after you have done everything" - verse 13 ) and then we must STAND.  It's not all about the preparation, eventually we must "do" or "act" - we must implement what we learned in our training.


The purpose of this spiritual helmet is to protect our head;  our brain or our mind.  Our mind is the idea center where we learn;  where we memorize and meditate;  where we make plans and decisions.  A few weeks ago we talked about protecting our heart - the emotion center but it is just as important to protect our mind! 
"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things.  Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me - put it into practice.  And the God of peace will be with you."  
Philippians 4:8

As you can see by the verse above - our mind and what we think about is so important (click HERE to view the post about "Thinking Good Thoughts").  This knowledge of Salvation (knowing that all of our sins have been forgiven through the saving blood of Jesus Christ) changes the way that one thinks and acts.  Knowing and accepting this gift of Salvation from God will change your ways forever.  This is the "helmet of Salvation" that we are talking about today.

This means that whatever we read, whatever we see on TV or whatever we view on the Internet needs to be filtered through this helmet of Salvation.  Some of the mental stimuli that is constantly streaming our way will be repelled by this spiritual helmet whereas other mental urging will be transformed into ideas and then finally into Godly actions.  I'm a visual person and I think of it this way:  allowing one little evil thought or mental picture into our mind is like allowing a small brain tumor to grow and spread throughout other parts of our brain.  It is the same with thoughts & what we allow into our minds - if you don't remove that tumor (or thought) while it is small then it will spread throughout the body and take control.  (I don't mean to be morbid but I have seen many family members deal with serious diseases and that is why I am comparing bad thoughts to disease). 

This helmet of salvation is in constant contact with our head and if we keep it in place it will protect us from Satan's evil schemes.  Keeping this spiritual helmet in place will also guide us in our decisions.  God speaks to us and urges us not only through our heart/emotions but also through our mind/thoughts.  Have you ever had a thought just pop into your head out of nowhere? - I have & many times that thought was guidance from my Lord & Savior.  I also believe that God speaks to us through our dreams.  This is another way that God uses our mind to lead us and direct us in the direction that He wants us to go.

So you see, this Helmet is not only preventing evil from penetrating our spiritual being but it is also molding our mind into ideas that become God glorifying actions.

Always protect your mind by keeping your Helmet of Salvation in place.

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Friday, October 19, 2018

The Deformed Produce Hall of Fame - 2018

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9545_zpsr6x5i6rc.jpg
Siamese Sunflower Twins
I was absolutely blown away by the miraculous beauty of this conjoined flower.  As you can see I took many photos.  The following pictures (next 5 pictures below) are all the same flower head but taken at various stages of growth.  This was the "Orange Mahogany" sunflower variety.
M - by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo unnamed 20_zpsvjujdgzx.jpg by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo unnamed 10_zpsd3mnkehr.jpg by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo unnamed 4_zps4ohf49io.jpg by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9526_zpsxm3beuru.jpgby Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9529_zps1vgav8x6.jpg

"Deformed Produce" HALL OF FAME - 2017

Every year I look forward to finding unusual veggie, fruit &/or flower formations from my garden produce.  This year we have four unique formations.
Please click on past HALL OF FAME posts below:
2011 Deformed Produce
Deformed Produce of 2013
2015 Deformed Produce
Deformed Produce of 2016
2017 Deformed Produce

Harvest always brings beautiful, abundant and sometimes deformed produce.  Everyone sees something different in misshapen veggies, flowers and fruit.  Seeing images in unusual garden produce is just like looking at a spectacular cloud filled sky and creating what you see in each cloud.


All pictures were taken by Angie Ouellette-Tower and all produce was grown in my garden.
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by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9669_zps6hf2jnzm.jpgby Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo unnamed 10_zpshr86qknu.jpg photo unnamed 11_zpsdjft3li6.jpg
 Triplet Sunflower
This stunning wonder has three different flower heads that share only one flower back.  I included a labeled picture because you can't really make out all three flowers in one picture angle.
by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9513_zpsb0shcypv.jpg  Tomato Intestine

This resembles a very inflamed large intestine.

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9708_zpsbkwwyfkv.jpg  Hearty Potato

To continue the human organ systems - this one is similar to the human heart in a very simplified form.

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo unnamed 4_zpst5uv0esw.jpg
Soft Serve Sweet Potato
Finally, the sweet potato that resembles soft serve ice cream.


Enjoy!
  
by Angie Ouellette-Tower for godsgrowinggarden.com photo Day_zpsb50f87c9.jpg


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Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Applesauce Variations - ROSEHIP APPLESAUCE

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo 2013-07-30_zpsnfveh5dz.jpg

Applesauce Variations - ROSEHIP APPLESAUCE

I absolutely love applesauce!  Not only does it taste delicious but it's also very healthy!  Even though I adore this preserve, I do like to change it up a bit by mixing flavors.  Two years ago I shared with you my:
Blackberry Applesauce Recipe 
(click HERE to read the entire post)
Today we will be mixing the wonderful flavors and textures of rosehips and apples.

ROSEHIP APPLESAUCE
You will need to make your rosehip puree first and freeze it since apples and rosehips ripen at different rates.  My rosehips are ripe in August and apples usually ripen at the end of September and into October.

ROSEHIP PUREE
1.  Harvest your ripe rosehips. 
2.  Prepare rosehips for preserving (click HERE to learn how)
Rose Hips by Angie Ouellette-Tower for godsgrowinggarden.com photo 004_zps672ff0f1.jpg
3.  Place prepared rosehips in a stock pot and add just enough water so that they do not burn (not too much water though).
4.  Bring to boil and simmer over low heat for about an hour stirring often (you might need to add a little more water so that it will not burn).
5.  Turn off the heat and let the rosehips cool in the pot overnight or about 10 hours.
6.  Put the rosehip mash through a food strainer - click HERE to view the strainer that I use.
7.  Freeze this rosehip puree until apple harvest

APPLE PUREE
(I always make plenty of apple puree to make various types of applesauce.  You will have extra puree left over to make plain cinnamon applesauce as well as the rosehip applesauce)
2 "six quart baskets" of apples (washed, drained & cut in half)
about 4 to 6 cups water
a little lemon juice to stop the apples from turning brown

Place the prepared apple halves in a large stock pot and add the water (the water will NOT cover the top of the apples - the purpose of the water is to prevent the apples from burning and to add a little more fluidity to the sauce).  Place the stock pot on a burner over medium heat until you see the water at the bottom start to boil - then cover and turn down the heat to simmer.  Simmer for 1 hour - stirring occasionally.
Before you heat the apples they should look like the first picture below - after simmering they should look  like the second picture below.




Allow the simmered apples to cool (I usually simmer the apples at night and remove from the heat and let them cool overnight).  Now you will need to use a food strainer click here to view the food strainer that I use).  This strainer will remove the skins and seeds from the sauce.  Continue adding the cooled & simmered apples until they have all been squeezed through the food strainer.  Set aside until next step.

COMBINE THE APPLE AND ROSEHIP PUREES
First you will need to thaw the rosehip puree for at least 24hours in the refrigerator.
1 cup rosehip puree
4 cups apple puree
sugar to taste

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9709_zpsjm0nntc2.jpg

Stir together until combined both purees and some sugar (start with a small amount of sugar and then build up to your taste as it boils).  Bring to boil over medium heat and then turn down and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour (IMPORTANT - Make sure that you stir often).  While the sauce is simmering you should gather your canning jars, lids and rings (you will need about 3 pints). (see Canning Basics - Jar Sizes). Also, gather all other canning supplies: (see Other Canning Supplies)
Start the water boiling for Jar sterilization: (see Sterilizing Jars & Lids) .
By now your jars should be sterilized and ready to be filled. Take the jars out of the boiling water (I use my jar remover and make sure that the water is drained out of each jar).  Ladle the applesauce into each jar making sure not to go above the bottom of the threads on the jar.  Continue filling until all of the applesauce has been used up.  Wipe the rim of each jar with a damp cloth making sure that any sauce residue is gone (any residue left on the rim can stop the jar from sealing).  Place a sterilized lid on each jar and then tighten a ring on each jar.  Place all jars in a "Water Bath Canner" and process (boil) the filled jars for 20 minutes (make sure that the water level in the Canner is 1 inch above the tallest jar)
After boiling for 20 minutes remove the jars and place them on the counter or table to cool (I always place them on a cloth because there have been a few times when a jar cracked and then the contents oozed out making a mess - the cloth will help if that happens). You will hear the wonderful popping sound of your jars sealing.

ENJOY!

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo DSCF9710_zpsjkmhketp.jpg
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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Tuesdays with a Twist Blog Hop #286

Welcome to Tuesdays with a Twist #286!
Checkout the many great giveaways going on right now!
Click the button below to enter each Giveaway!!:
God’s Growing Garden Giveaways
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Good Morning and Welcome to another No Rules Party!


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We're your hosts & co-hosts 

Mary @ Back to the Basics and Mary's Kitchen
Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures
Angie @ God's Growing Garden
Checkout my amazing "Featured" Pinterest Board

(click HERE to view & follow)
Features!
Each co-host will be sharing her own picks for Features. This gives everyone a better chance of being featured. Be sure to check all of our blogs to see if you were featured! 
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My Features this Week are:


1. "Best Ideas for Using Green Tomatoes" by Stone Family Farmstead
2. "Clementine Pumpkins" by From Play Dates To Parties
3. "Simple Fall Porch" by The Dedicated House



If you've been featured we'd love for you to grab a button.

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The party starts every Tuesday at 7am EST and will continue until Saturday at 11:59pm.  Feel free to stop back any time and "like" your favorites.  Please visit other blogs if you have a moment. 

Share older posts as well as new ones.  No limit on links!

*Pictures should be your own* 

By linking up you give us permission to use these photos

 (with proper link backs) in our features.   And now for the party!





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Grow your own!

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Monday, October 15, 2018

You're the STAR - Week#3 FAMILY (October 2018)

I hope that you are able to enjoy the beautiful Autumn colors in your area!
Thank you again for joining us!
There are many ways to follow me:
blog  |  facebook  |  pinterest  |  twitter  |  bloglovin  |  google+  |  instagram

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by Angie Ouellette-Tower for http://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo YoureTheStarHopLarge_zpsjbrldhcx.jpg
Welcome to week#3 of the October "You're the Star" Blog Hop!
Before we continue onto the Linky party I wanted to share this post from my blog:
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WELCOME to FAMILY feature week of the
October "You're the STAR" blog hop!
Meet your FAMILY week Host & Cohost 
by Angie Ouellette-Tower for http://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo YoureTheStarFamily_zpslunlirxh.jpg
This week is FAMILY feature week
Swing by the Family hosting team's blogs:
Miranda @ The Myrabev Life
Elizabeth @ Family Farm School
Michelle @ Moms Are Frugal
This is a month long Linky party featuring YOU!
There will be 4 different features each week and 4 different feature categories.  Just to be clear - this is NOT a themed party - you may link up ANY family-friendly blog posts any day of each month. 
The "theme" occurs in our weekly features:
WEEK#3 FAMILY - parenting, fitness, health, finances & inspirational (this can include anything about children like: education ideas for children, also self help, beauty etc -  anything family friendly)

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for godsgrowinggarden.com photo ShopHoppingFeatured_zpsf9fab123.jpg

(These features were chosen from the September "You're the STAR" blog hop)
If you've been featured then please grab a STAR button below:

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for http://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo YourAstarFEATURED_zpspebobflc.jpg
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All Hosts/CoHosts will post this blog hop on every Monday of each week.
Please link up your family friendly blog posts below!
It wouldn't be a linky party with YOU!
(IMPORTANT NOTE: by linking up you understand that you might be featured next month and if so, we will use some of your photos from your post - rest assured - we will always link back to your lovely blog.  We might also share your fantastic posts on social media.  Also, you may link up as many family-friendly posts as you like & YES - other blog hops &/or giveaways are welcome {giveaways and blog hops will NOT be featured though}  Thank You & ENJOY! )



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Click the button below to enter the Great Giveaways going on now!!:
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Sunday, October 14, 2018

Becoming a Christian Soldier - SHIELD OF FAITH

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for https://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/ photo SundaySoldierSHIELD_zpss2kjpbgv.jpg
Becoming a Christian Soldier - SHIELD OF FAITH
 Today we continue learning about "Becoming A Christian Soldier" and learning how to "put on the full armor of God" (Ephesians 6:11) - Now, I have to be very clear - I am NOT talking about becoming a physical soldier and I am NOT saying that you should go out and physically fight (although I appreciate and respect anybody who has served or is serving in our army, navy or air force).  What I'm talking about in this series is on a spiritual level.  If you look at Ephesians, chapter 6 verse 12: "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood..." that is the exact point - we are not talking about a physical fight and we are not talking about physical training.  Becoming a Christian soldier is all about our relationship with God;  about our spiritual training and about our spiritual self.

A few weeks ago we learned about who our enemy is and then most recently we learned about the FEET FITTED WITH THE GOSPEL OF PEACE.
Click HERE to read INTRODUCTION to this series.
Click HERE to read "STRENGTH FROM GOD"
Click HERE to read "4 Ways To STAND"
Click HERE to read "BELT OF TRUTH"
Click HERE to read "BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS"
Click HERE to read "FEET FITTED WITH THE GOSPEL OF PEACE"

Our God is all powerful, all knowing, He is our Protector and Provider - He would never throw us into a battle without fully equipping us first.  Today we continue learning about the "full armor of God" and specifically "the shield of faith

It is interesting to me that there is an order to the verses in Ephesians chapter 6 - first we must prepare, train and draw from God's power "after you have done everything" - verse 13 ) and then we must STAND.  It's not all about the preparation, eventually we must "do" or "act" - we must implement what we learned in our training.


What was the shield in a Roman Soldier's attire during Jesus' day?  
The shield was an oval shaped protecting gear that was light enough to be held in one hand but large enough to stop arrows from penetrating the soldier.  It wasn't just held in place - the soldier moved the shield up and down or left and right.  When the soldier saw which direction the enemy's arrows were coming from, he had to move that shield to intercept the weapon zooming at him.

I find the use of "flaming arrows" in the highlighted verse above very interesting.  Roman Soldiers truly did use flaming arrows but in today's scripture we are talking about "flaming arrows of the evil one".  Remember, the evil one is Satan; the devil a.k.a. the Christian's enemy.  "The flame" infers eternal damnation but to me it also symbolizes sin.  Whenever I do something wrong;  whenever I have sinned, I feel this burning rush of guilt flow over me - it's hot & fiery almost like an embarrassment flush (only worse).  This happens when the evil one's flaming arrow has penetrated my spiritual body and it happened because I did NOT have my "shield of faith" in hand.  These "flaming arrows" can come in the form of temptation and deception and can be subtle.  This flaming arrow could fly by you from behind and just catch your clothes on fire - you won't notice until you are fully engulfed in flames.

The only way to extinguish these deadly arrows is to "take up the shield of faith."  This is action on our part.  We must cling to the shield and move it in the direction necessary to smother the arrow.
  
I looked up the meaning of faith in the dictionary: 
faith - belief in something that cannot be seen, trust in & loyalty to God, confidence in a person, thing, deity or doctrine.  Conviction, assurance, devotion. 

This "Shield" is our Christian faith - which comes from accepting the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ who died for our sins.  It is this faith, conviction, belief, devotion that is the only weapon that will continually protect us against the evil schemes of the devil.  Our Christian assurance is the only thing that will stop Satan's temptation & deception.


Be sure to have the Shield of Faith in hand at all times!  Making sure to move it in the direction that will extinguish all arrows!


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"Prayer Warriors United" is a google+ Community where Christians come together in prayer. 

Click HERE to view or join this community



If you need prayer please fill out this






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