Christian Living Magazine January February 2020

Page 1


January / February 2020


Sarton Her next chapter


Agostas A forever family of 4


Hope Idaho A Moms in Prayer event


Putdown-free A 2020 challenge

Dee Sarton with her 2-year-old granddaughter, Serayah

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord

“plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Tune in for your daily dose of hope

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Contents January / February 2020 “For to the snow He says, ‘Fall on the earth.’”

— Job 37:6 ESV


Volume 9, Number 1

Cover Story —


Messages on a sidewalk:

Are they from God?


Too Soft?:

The American Church

Awaken Hope Idaho:


The Agostas:


A Moms in Prayer event

Dee Sarton:

Her next chapter


A forever family of 4

COLUMNS Get To!”®: Challenging Faith: 10 “I 26 Practice self-compassion The Parable of the Stove This: 14 Consider A 2020 Vibrant Vision

Man’s Toolbox: 28 Real Planning for the future

Keep Calm: Health: 20 Mom 30 Maximum Becoming putdown-free Anti-inflammation diet Dots: 22 God Adventure time!


Publisher Sandy Jones 208-703-7860 Editor Gaye Bunderson Submit story ideas, article submissions & press releases Sales & Marketing Kimberly McMullen 208-703-7509 • Katy Nelson 503-816-3042 • Scott McMurtrey 208-841-4583 Cover Photo Drew Allen Brown, DAB Studios Graphic Design Denice King Contributors Daniel Bobinski, Jim Day, Joan Endicott, Terry Frisk, Leo Hellyer, Janet Lund, Joel Lund, Rosie Main, Gary Moore, Bethany Riehl and Dan Woodworth Website Design SEO Idaho Distribution D&S Distribution

Cherish your spouse

Christian Living is committed to encouraging and instructing individuals in their daily lives by presenting stories of people in the Treasure Valley who are living on a foundation of faith in Jesus Christ and who serve as uplifting examples to others. Views expressed in Christian Living do not necessarily represent those of the publisher. Every effort has been made by Christian Living to insure accuracy of the publication contents. However, we do not guarantee the accuracy of all information nor the absence of errors and omissions; hence, no responsibility can be or is assumed. All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2020 by Christian Living Ministries Inc.


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Christian Living | January / February 2020 3


New year, new decade, new resolution

It is true, many have forgotten how to dialogue, By Sandy Jones to express their own, as well as hear others’ opinHappy New Decade! I hope yours is off to an ions and beliefs. The hostility surrounding these amazing start! differences ends friendships, and disrupts families I take my role in this ministry seriously. I pray that my words in this, my column, always ring often permanently. true, praying over each one as soon as I turn in I have to admit that during this past year this the last, asking God what message He would have weighed heavily on me, to the point that I found me share, and requesting the wisdom to do it I was fighting depression. That happens to those right. of us who are “control freaks,” when things are The topic for this column has been clear to me completely out of our control, or we can’t fix for several weeks, and yet I’ve wrangled with, them, we internalize it, stew about it, and often debated and bartered with God about doing it. let it affect us emotionally. At one point I thought of asking one of our other What I woke up and recalled is that I serve the topical columnists to take on this subject — all King of Kings, that He is in control, so I don’t the while knowing that it was my assignment, not have to be. theirs. What I have to do is my part. Sandy Jones Last September someone stated the obvious, I have to get up each day, thank Him for the and yet, until that point it had escaped me, that opportunities ahead of me. Give over my concerns to Him. Put we were coming upon a new decade. Their challenge was to exon His armor, knowing that He is fighting the battle, and go amine one’s accomplishments in the last decade, and set specific forward, doing what it is He’s called me to do! goals for the coming one. I’ll admit that at that moment I found I need to be deeper in His Word, closer to Him in prayer, listen this profound. attentively for His reply. As I started retracing my steps these past ten years, it wasn’t so much my life and my actions that kept jumping out at me. It was I need to love the unlovable. Forgive the unforgivable. Praying how much society has changed in the last ten years. It seems we for all. live in a topsy-turvy world where good is now called bad, and I need to remember that He sits on the Judgment Seat, not me. what’s always been bad, or taboo, is good and acceptable. I need to bind the enemy out, so there’s nothing but Jesus in I realize it was foretold in 2 Timothy 4:3 (NIV): For the time me! will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. I need to count my blessings — after all, He’s allowed me to Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them have them. a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want I need to trust, fully and completely, that He’s got this! to hear. So that is my New Decade Resolution — to BE who I’m called And all too often, if you don’t accept this new normal, then to be; to work diligently to be fully present, not just with my famyou’re bad! ily and friends, but fully present with God; and to do better to ‘let I often have to remind myself of Rick Warren’s quote, “Our culture has accepted two huge lies. The first is that if you disagree go, and let God’ do His part, while I focus on doing mine. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. — with someone’s lifestyle, you must fear or hate them. The second Phil 4:13 NKJV is that to love someone means you agree with everything they Until next time…… n believe or do.”

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4 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

YOUR Daily Bread

‘In God We Trust’ — putting Him first

In an increasingly materialistic world, we By Terry Frisk need to be reminded what matters most. In the A while back, I was standing in line with Sermon on the Mount, Jesus stated: money in hand, waiting to make a purchase. “No one can serve two masters. Either you Looking at the dollar bill in my hand, I read will hate the one and love the other, or you the words “In God We Trust.” I have read this will be devoted to the one and despise the many times before. However, this was the first other. You cannot serve both God and montime I had really pondered why it appeared on all forms of American money. ey.” — Matthew 6:24 NIV I went home and googled the term and The message “In God We Trust” appearing learned that the idea was first proposed by on our money is a reminder of who we should Reverend Mark Watkinson in 1861. His ratioserve. It is easy to get distracted in pursuit of nale was to “relieve us from the ignominy of wealth. Our quest for God should always come heathenism.” He was concerned that the world first. Putting ourselves in control of our financand future generations would think the United es is a major step in our faith journey. How do States was a nation of nonbelievers. Because we achieve this? Here are some steps that have Terry Frisk the nation was in the Civil War at the time, he helped me: gained support from Union leadership who 1. Recognize that your income is a wanted to portray that God was on the side of the Union. blessing from God. He has entrusted you to use your Then Treasury Secretary Salmon Chase directed the Philadel- money wisely to serve Him. He wants you to achieve a balphia mint to design a coin declaring “the trust of our people in ance between giving, saving and spending so that you do not God.” become a slave to money. Attain this balance through prayer. In April, 1864, Congress authorized minting both a one 2. Give to support God’s work. Start with what you can cent and two cent coin with the phrase “In God We Trust.” contribute today and strive to increase your giving to a full The phrase intermittently appeared on coins and currency tithe or more. until 1956 when Congress designated the term as the national Continued on page 13 motto and ordered that it appear on all coins and currency.

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Christian Living | January / February 2020 5

MESSAGES on the sidewalk

Are they really words from God?

Image by Jacques GAIMARD from Pixabay

By Bethany Riehl “You got this.” I smiled as I marched over the words swirled in chalk on the pathway. Just a few more paces led to another, “You go girl.” My morning walk had gone from exercise and fresh air to my very own motivational conference. I’ve heard stories of believers, dejected and overwhelmed, having similar experiences. One well-known author tells of finding the words, “You are beautiful,” scrolled before her in a time of doubt. She laughed and grabbed on to the message as one straight from God. She suddenly found herself uplifted and encouraged because God went to the trouble to set this sign right in her path in the mo-

6 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

ment she needed it. Who needed the man who broke her heart when God Himself told her she was beautiful? I thought of this story on my walk, but I wasn’t drinking in the inspirational messages or giving credit to the Lord for them. See, I happened to know that just days before, the elementary school close by had hosted a “Girls on the Run” 5K race. The messages were for them, not for me, and no amount of digging deep in my imagination could change that. Fortunately, I wasn’t in need of the pick-me-up anyway. I had read my Bible that morning and was mulling over the truths I gleaned from that precious book while I enjoyed the fresh air. As I walked, I also thought about the popular author and her “word from the Lord.” That story is one of hundreds out there of

“You got this,” and “You’re a rock star”? When did ways people feel the Lord is speaking to them. This time of year, I see posts and hear friends say that His Word, which proclaims His death and resurrecthey’ve prayed for a “word of the year” from God tion for the salvation of our very souls, become not and He always gives them one. A word they need to enough? pursue and think about so they can be aligned with I read a startling statistic recently. Only 11 percent Him in a more intimate way. The word might be of Christians have read the Bible in its entirety. Is “love” or “forgive,” “Sabbath” or “perseverance.” it any wonder that we’re seeking affirmation from It’s wonderful to seek the Lord at the beginning of Him through messages on the sidewalk? My friends, a new year and anticipate that He will answer, but it is so much simpler — and more concrete (pun I wonder if it’s wise or even biblical to make God intended) — than that. such a chatterbox in so many small and ordinary If you want to hear Him this year, read your Bible. ways. Find a reading program if you like; they are numerIs this the way He speaks? Bethany Riehl ous and varied. The Bible Recap is an app I listen to It’s something I’ve been researching, pondering, often that recaps a reading program you can find on and praying through for the last six months. I have the Blue Letter Bible site. I pinned to the top of my Facebook author heard numerous speakers, teachers, and pastors talk about hearing page (Bethany Riehl, Author) a link to the “Keep the Feast” reading from God and I’ve begun to notice something: He certainly sounds program that takes you through the Bible twice in one year, reading different in these interactions than He does in the Bible. Typically, just six chapters a day. a common theme among the most outspoken of these modern day There is nothing more important for the church today than to be “prophets” is a lot of improperly interpreted Scripture. That isn’t nourished in the Word on a daily basis. And not just the highlights. to say that everyone who follows this trend isn’t solid. I just wonder, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, when did the God of all creation dying on a cross for the sins of for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that mankind stop being enough of an “I love you,” message? I heard Justin Peters say, “If you want to hear God speak, read your the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16,17) Bible. If you want to hear Him audibly, read your Bible out loud.” I know there are some difficult books, but I once heard a teacher Folks, that’s all we need. Hebrews 1:1,2 tells us, “Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, explain them this way, “Some parts of Scripture are like fiber.” It but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He might not be the most appetizing, and we might not understand why we need it, but it’s necessary just the same. appointed heir of all things, through whom also He created the This year, instead of seeking for a word from the Lord, what if world.” we as the Church sought after His Word? And if you want to find He told us from the beginning that Messiah was coming. John tells messages from God on the sidewalk, that’s easy: buy some chalk and us that when He did, He was “the Word made flesh” (John 1:14). write out a highlight from your reading each day. Happy New Year, We’ve just come through a season of rejoicing in that beautiful birth. friends! If we seek after the Lord, laying ourselves down, we will be The birth foretold from the time that sin entered our world. The found in Him. Safe, secure, and whole. n birth of a fully-God, fully-man Savior. He was, “Pierced for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His wounds we Bethany Riehl loves to write stories and articles that explore the complexities of are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5) relationships and encourage readers in their relationship with Jesus. She joyfully He looked upon the creation of the world and called it good; serves in the children’s ministry at her church, teaches at a homeschool co-op, and with the addition of man, He declared it “very good.” Jesus calls us drinks more coffee than necessary to keep up with her only-slightly-crazy life. She brother, and friend. For His glory. We should be confident in this allis the author of four Christian fiction novels and now lives in Meridian with her powerful God. Do we need fluffy messages of, “You are beautiful,” spunky kids and very handsome hubby.

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Christian Living | January / February 2020 7

ARE we too soft?

A look at the American Church

show, and things like mentoring and discipleBy Daniel Bobinski making are often given low priority, if not abanHave you ever visited a third world or develdoned altogether. oping country? Maybe you have, but there’s a My suggestion here is to take matters into your good chance you haven’t. Research shows that own hands. For example, Oswald Sanders has 40 percent of Americans have never stepped a book titled, “Spiritual Discipleship: Principles foot outside the United States, and those who do for Following Christ for Every Believer.” Its 20 often travel to other developed countries. chapters explore the common knowledge and My reason for asking is to check for a frame attitudes needed to be a Follower of Jesus, and of reference. If you’ve not visited a struggling country, you probably don’t realize how much each chapter concludes with several application we Americans live like kings. / discussion questions. If you want to grow into Yes, we hear much about poverty in the U.S., a stronger disciple, why not get together with but every time I’ve returned to the United States two or three other people and discuss a chapter after visiting an impoverished country, I am a week? amazed at how even our poor live like kings When you’re done with the book, find two or compared to other parts of the world. Daniel Bobinski three other people and go through it again. Any Why am I bringing this up? Because I’ve good discipleship book will do. Or, take a book recently realized just how soft and impotent the western Church in the Bible and discuss it verse by verse. The idea is for us to has become. Yes, you read that correctly. I’m suggesting that, as get out of our comfort zones and start challenging ourselves to a whole, our American Church isn’t doing as well as we might make a bigger impact for the cause of Christ. think.

We’re divided

The Apostle Paul wrote that early believers were acting like “mere humans” when they said, “I follow Paul,” or, “I follow Apollos.” Still, to this day, mankind can’t keep itself from being tribal. Instead of people following “Paul” or “Apollos,” today people are Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal, Adventist, Congregationalist, Anglican, etc., etc. And each of those has their own divisions, too! What if we chose to be neither Protestant nor Catholic, but simply, “Followers of Jesus?”

We’re too comfy

As I implied earlier, the abundant blessings we’ve received in western civilization may actually be hurting the church. That’s always difficult to hear, because as humans, we like our creature comforts. But think about it — the early church was pretty much just hanging around Jerusalem. It wasn’t until Stephen was killed (Acts 6 and 7) and persecution increased that the early Followers of Jesus spread out. If it wasn’t for that persecution, it’s a safe bet the gospel wouldn’t have traveled as far as it did, as fast as it did. Persecution causes growth. Sadly, western Christians today quickly complain when a service has gone five minutes too long or when the coffee pot is empty after the church service. This is a lamentable commentary on the body of Christ. I fear that the western Church is maintaining a form of Godliness but denying the power thereof. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to put a guilt trip on anyone. I’m just saying most of us enjoy our creature comforts, and we don’t want to be bothered with “Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth.” Or even our neighbors.

We’re not good at making disciples

In the Gospel of Matthew, the last instruction we receive from Jesus is, “[G]o and make disciples of all nations …” I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The western Church doesn’t do a very good job at this. We’ve defaulted to letting a pastor run the

8 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

The joy set before us

Imagine for a minute you are the holy Creator of the universe. Nothing that was made was made apart from you — including two creatures we call Adam and Eve. When these two decided to ignore the one rule you created for them, they became unable to live with you. You are holy, but they became corrupt, and the two don’t mix. Separation needed to occur, but you had a plan all along: You would become like them. You would then allow yourself to be brutally tortured and killed, buying a reconciliation — an inheritance path so they could return to fellowship with you. It is because of love you chose this. You originally created Adam and Eve so you could experience the joy of relationship — joy being a byproduct of healthy relationships — but because of Adam and Eve’s actions, that joy was greatly diminished. That’s why the writer of Hebrews tells us to fix our eyes on Jesus, saying, “For the joy set before him, he endured the cross…” Put another way, the Creator of the universe wanted to experience deep joy again in His relationship with us, so He sacrificed Himself to make a path for restoration. Overcoming obstacles to joy My friends, I dare say the American Church has become soft. Can we sacrifice some comfort for the cause of Christ? The times are such that I don’t want to be seen by God as lukewarm. Each of us has a choice. Can I challenge you to make sure there’s oil in your lamp (Matt 25) and engage the world more for the cause of Christ? With the dawning of a new decade and the joy set before us, I want to encourage every Follower of Jesus to do exactly that. n Daniel Bobinski, M.Ed. teaches teams and individuals how to use Emotional Intelligence (more info at He’s also a home fellowship leader, a homeschooling dad, a best-selling author, and a popular speaker at conferences and retreats. Reach him at or (208) 375-7606.

“I GET TO!”®

Practice self-compassion, starting today By Joan Endicott “What are you most excited about right now?” I asked my coaching client, after our initial greeting. “Well, I’m excited about our call — it’s definitely great timing,” she responded. Then with her emotions on the edge and voice cracking, she continued, “But I’m not very happy with myself. How am I not getting more done? How am I not further along? I feel so frustrated — even angry at myself at times. I’m this old and I don’t have more of a handle on this? What’s wrong with me? I guess I’m just lazy.” As she shared a bit more, her emotions calmed, yet was still teary. I began lovingly clarifying a few things with her. “Didn’t you move in the last two weeks?” “Yes,” she replied. I continued, “…and wasn’t that important project you led your team on and completed before the deadline the #1 priority for your boss?” “Yes,” she said again. “And last week you were thrilled to share with me that no matter what, you’ve kept your self-care a huge priority; your sleep, exercise and eating well?” “Yes, I’m happy to say I did do that…but I didn’t…” “It’s okay, Sis, we’ll get to that,” I assured her. “But first, it’s important to get clarity on what you did do — what you did accomplish so you can give yourself credit and do the happy dance about that!” After creating the list of all she did accomplish, with love and admiration for her, in my goofy you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me voice, I asked, “Sooo, just one quick question, my friend. When exactly would you have done those other things in the last two weeks — maybe between 2 and 4 a.m.? I mean, didn’t we agree a few months ago that your superwoman undies got lost in the laundry?!” Thrilled to hear her laughter at this point, I knew it was the perfect time to go deeper and help her uncover and discover what was happening with the enormous weight of self-judgment and self-criticism she was stuck, struggling and suffering under. Before going deeper though, it was so important for me to let her know she was not alone — not at all. I could relate all too well in having struggled for years with self-condemning thoughts, beating myself up and feeling I’m never doing enough or just not good enough period! Have you ever felt that way? Well, I’m here to say, there is hope for you today! I am living proof that you can overcome those false beliefs and be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2), learning to look at yourself through a loving, compassionate lens.

These were my three specific steps as I guided her through the process: Step #1. Objective-Perspective. An objective perspective is foundational to begin practicing self-compassion. “If your daughter or best friend called you up and had just experienced what you have over the last two weeks, and she said exactly what you said to me — How did I not get more done? How am I not further along than this? I feel so frustrated…I guess I’m just lazy — what would you say to her?” She quickly responded with, “Well, I’d tell her she needed to be more patient and not so harsh with herself and…” I could literally hear her grin and feel her energy shift over the phone. “I’d tell her what you always remind me to do, Joan, to give herself credit!” We both burst out laughing! And then I added, “You are so quick to offer compassion and empathy to others — family, friends, even employees you’re leading — but not for yourself.” “I know, Joan!” she said. “It’s easy for me to see it so clearly when it involves someone else, but I guess I just expect more from myself than I do others!” “Why do you think that is?” I asked. “I don’t know. I feel like I’m never happy with what I’ve done because there’s always more I could do. Clearly, I’ve never understood what it meant to be loving and compassionate to myself, much less begin practicing it.” She then laughed as she said, “Sooo, that’s something I get to work on with you, right, coach?” It’s fascinating that we can expect so much more from ourselves than we would a loved one. If you’re not intentional, you will quickly and easily go from critiquing a situation to condemning yourself, just as my client did. She went from talking about her frustration with the situation to judging and condemning herself. In her heightened emotion she started calling herself names and saying things that were completely false. Step #2. Is That True? The second step was reviewing what she had said about herself and simply asking her, “Is that really true?” The reason this is so important is because your words, whether in your thoughts or spoken aloud, are programming your subconscious mind to believe what you’re telling it to believe. “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7) In her TEDTalk on self-compassion, Dr. Kristin Neff shared, “With self-compassion, we give ourselves the same kindness and care we’d give to a good friend. In contrast to self-esteem, selfcompassion is not based on self-evaluations. People feel compassion for themselves because all human beings deserve compassion and understanding, not because they possess some particular set of traits (pretty, smart, talented, and so on).”

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10 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

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Dr. Neff also points out that, “Self-compassion are gone, the stranglehold is broken. It’s truly is very strongly related to mental well-being. It’s fascinating to watch as empathy dissolves shame. strongly related to less depression, less anxiety, less It’s equally important to be selective with whom stress, and less perfectionism. It’s equally related you share. Dr. Brown cautions, “If we share our to positive states like happiness, life-satisfaction, shame story with the wrong person, they can easily become one more piece of flying debris in an greater motivation, greater self-responsibility, already dangerous storm.” making healthier lifestyle choices. It’s also linked The Bible is full of scriptures that talk about to having more sense of connectedness with others and better interpersonal relationships.” God’s compassion toward us and how we should Step #3. Attack Situations Not Self ! It’s crucial have compassion towards others. “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, to make the clear distinction between attacking clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, problems, not people — situations, not self. A humility, gentleness and patience.” (Colossians simple, effective tool is to start with I’m feeling… Joan Endicott 3:12) versus I am… But if you don’t first see yourself the way God I love how Dr. Brené Brown (a researcher, sees you, calling yourself what He calls you, you can’t possibly author and storyteller who is well known for her research on vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame) makes the very clear give to others what you don’t first possess for yourself, right? distinction between guilt and shame feelings. Guilt: I did someWhenever you’re unsure of how you should think of yourself thing wrong. Shame: I am something wrong. or speak to yourself, consider asking these important questions: A) WOW! Isn’t that so powerful? That clear difference provided Are my thoughts and words about myself in alignment with what such a huge shift for me, as I hope it will for you. my Creator says about me? B) What would I tell my best friend Brené says, “Shame is the most powerful, master emotion. It’s or loved one right now in this same situation? the fear that we’re not good enough.” Now, you get to start practicing self-compassion today! So how do you shift out of shame? Grab your FREE “I Get To!”® book at and Brené’s advice: “If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.” sign up for FREE blog videos on self-compassion, etc. Joan Endicott is an Award-Winning Keynote Speaker, Author of “I Get To!”® founder This is exactly what I see happen with my coaching clients of GIANT-Slayer Coaching and “WOW!” Women Owning Their who’ve struggled with shame, whether for years or days. When Worth©. Her coaching reaches over 30 countries. Follow her on FB and they openly share their shame-struggles with me, receiving my IG — she posts encouraging words daily! heartfelt empathy, I can feel the shift for them. The heavy chains

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Christian Living | January / February 2020 11


You vowed to ‘cherish’ your spouse

If you cherish something, you go out of your way By Gary Moore to show it is important to you and thus you showcase Remember back to your wedding day? Remember it. Guys, think about when you gave your girlfriend your vows? Many of you probably pledged “to love her engagement ring. How many times did she show and cherish, till death do us part.” it off to friends and coworkers? Or when you bought Love and cherish. Most of us understand and get the love part — commitment, putting the other peryour first new car, did you ask friends to come outson first, service — but I’m guessing that most of us side to see your new “baby”? haven’t sat back and thought about what it means to Applied to relationships, when we cherish somecherish our spouse. Is that word just an add-on? Do one, we naturally want to protect them. It could be you ever wonder why we say it once at the wedding physical protection, but also protection of an emoand then rarely ever mention it again? tional or spiritual sort, or of reputation or health. Author Gary Thomas suggests that exploring and Think about when you were seriously dating your understanding what it means to cherish each other spouse. You treated that person with tenderness bewill enrich, deepen, and spiritually strengthen our cause they mattered so much to you. You looked for marriages. Cherish isn’t just a throwaway word, but ways to nurture them and at least occasionally went an idea that helps us better understand what we are out of your way to indulge them. called to do and to be in marriage. He goes on to If we cherish someone, we will hold them dear. Gary Moore say that learning to truly cherish each other turns That means we will purposely think about them, marriage from an obligation into a delight. It lifts and when we do, it will bring us great pleasure. Just the thought of marriage above a commitment to a precious priority. The way we treat something acknowledges whether we cherish it or them will make us smile. When we cultivate such an affection toward someone, we naturally want others to see their worth, so we find ways hold it with indifference or contempt. To truly cherish something is to showcase our spouses to others. We want others to take the same to go out of our way to show it off, protect it, and honor it. We want pleasure from our spouses’ excellence as we do. others to see and recognize and affirm the value that we see. The good news is that cherishing your spouse is something you Think about an art collector who has a very valuable piece of art. can learn to do. It’s not just a feeling that comes and goes; there are He will try many different frames, different lighting intensities and angles, and hang it on different walls to showcase that piece of art spiritual and relational practices that generate feelings of cherishing at its best. Likewise, when we cherish a person, we will put time, your spouse as you act on them. Learning to cherish actually creates thought, and effort into honoring, showcasing, and protecting them. joy, fulfillment, happiness, and satisfaction. It’s one of those spiritual Sadly, the word cherish is more popularly used for things and realities that may not make logical sense, but when you take it by faith memories than it is for people, but such common uses can help us and put it into practice, it works. understand what the word means. To cherish something means we Look at it this way: love is the nurturing aspect of marriage, while want to protect it (you don’t leave a $100,000 Mercedes out in the cherish is the “tasting” aspect of marriage. To love and cherish, till street with the door open and the keys in it); treat it with tenderness death do us part. n (avoiding streets filled with potholes); nurture it (oil changes and tuneups); and go out of our way to indulge it (frequent washes and wax Gary Moore served as associate pastor at Cloverdale Church of God for the past jobs). 14 years. He does couples’ coaching and leads couples’ workshops and retreats To cherish something is to hold it dear. That means you think called MUM’s the Word. He also does a weekly radio program called Life Point about it, and when you do, you feel positive and warm inside. You Plus on KBXL 94.1FM at 8:45 a.m. on Fridays. For information on his workhave great affection for it. shops and retreats, contact him at

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‘In God We Trust’ Continued from page 5

3. Create a budget that focuses on your true needs. Allocate an amount for giving and saving first. Also, include an amount for unforeseen expenses that may occur. 4. Prayerfully consider every major purchase. Before shopping, determine how much you are prepared to pay and stick with it. 5. Be careful with debt. Not all debt is bad. Very few people purchase a home without a mortgage. However, your mortgage payments should not exceed 25 percent of your income. If it does, you are buying a home that you cannot afford. If you use credit cards, pay them off monthly. If you are carrying a credit card balance, then you are spending beyond your means. “In God We Trust” serves as a reminder that the currency it is printed on is not something to worship. Money can be used to accomplish good things in serving God. Be more intentional on how you spend your income and share a portion with others while providing for your financial security. You will be abundantly blessed in the process! Have a joyous and peaceful new year. n

Image by Hebi B. from Pixabay

Terry Frisk is a partner in the firm B2B CFO, providing financial advisory services to small businesses. He also counsels individuals on personal financial matters through the Cathedral of the Rockies Budget Counseling ministry. He may be contacted through e-mail at

Christian Living | January / February 2020 13


Experience a ‘Vibrant Vision’ in 2020

By Dan Woodworth He wants us to rest in Him! Resting does not 2020 is a New Year, but much more than a New mean taking a nap. It means we trust and lean on Year! This is a year of Vibrant Vision! Him and let Him reveal what He wants us to see. Listen to these words of Spirit and Life that our Listen to His Voice and see what He says in Living Lord wrote through Solomon in Proverbs Proverbs 3:5-8 in The Message: 4:18 in the Hebrew: Trust God from the bottom of your heart. The path of the just is like the sun shining Don’t try to figure out everything on your that shines ever brighter unto the fixed, estabown. Listen (and see) God’s voice in everylished and perfect day. thing you do, everywhere you go. He’s the Hear these words of Spirit and Life that He wrote One who will keep you on track. Don’t asthrough the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 3:18 in sume that you know it all. Run to God! Run the Greek: from evil! Your body will glow with health, And we all, with unveiled faces, beholding your very bones will vibrate with life! as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being We are so busy being pressured by our culture transformed into the same image, from one dethat many times we fail to see Christ Every Emgree of glory to another, just as from the Lord, powering Miracle Moment! who is the Spirit. See these words that our Living Lord wrote Dan Woodworth Can you see and hear these resurrection words? through Paul in Romans 12:1-2 in The Message: Our Living Lord reveals to us that as we keep our So here’s what I want you to do, God helpeyes on Him, He Graciously Gives us Vibrant Vision to see ouring you: Take your everyday, ordinary life — your sleepselves and others as He sees us! ing, eating, going-to-work, and walking around life — and I have noticed that most people are not looking at themselves the place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God way He sees them. When people ask me how I am doing, I respond does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don’t by saying, “I feel Grateful Every Empowering Miracle Moment!” become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it The reason I know is because many people are astonished when without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. I tell them how I am doing. They are seeing all the hurt or pain or You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize problems that that they are experiencing. what He wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike I am concentrating on how He sees me! He sees me and you seethe culture around you, always dragging you down to its ing Him as He speaks in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 in the Greek: level of immaturity, God brings out the best in you, develGive thanks in everything, for this is God’s will for you in ops well-formed maturity in you. Christ Jesus. Can you see the culture consuming you and corrupting you to We give thanks because He loves us and is thankful for us! prevent you from seeing Him clearly and consistently? Since Jesus is our elder brother and our Redeemer, let’s look at Even in our church and ministry meetings, many times we rush what He saw when He walked on this Earth 2000 years ago. through them and check them off our “To Do” list because we Notice in John 5:19 in the Amplified version: have so many other things that we feel compelled to do. I assure you and most solemnly say to you, the Son can do Let’s see the things we feel we must do. How many of those nothing of Himself [of His own accord], unless it is something things do we see Him calling us to do? He sees the Father doing; for whatever things the Father does, Jesus was actively involved with people most of the time when the Son [in His turn] also does in the same way. He walked on this earth. But He saw His Daddy in Heaven Jesus was Daddy in Heaven Centered all the time! You may say, calling Him to pray at night or in the morning, to take lots of “He is perfect and I’m not.” time for people who interrupted Him as He was going to raise Let me graciously give you an inspiring idea from Him. Since Jesus someone from the dead (Lazarus and the daughter of Jairus) and emptied Himself of all His divine ability and chose to become a man many other times when He saw it was His time to take a break or (Philippians 2:5-11), we can do the same thing. In fact, He calls us to sleep or have fun. keep our eyes on Him all the time. He was never pressured to perform or please people! I believe one of the reasons we think we are unable to see the way Why do we let ourselves be pressured to perform or bow to He created us to see is because we have been consumed by our culexpectations or responsibilities that He is not seeing us to do? ture. This electronic microwave age has us running so fast that we are Because we have fit into our culture and become so adjusted to subtly deceived into thinking that business is success! it that we forget who we are and seeing what He sees us doing. We have been conditioned to be distracted from keeping our eyes I am learning to see Him Every Empowering Miracle Moon Him. Most of us are so busy that we have forgotten who we are ment! Sometimes I get distracted, but those times are becoming and what He wants us to do! less common.

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14 January / February 2020 | Christian Living


TREASURE VALLEY He has opened my eyes to see that I am a 6-year-old boy emotionally and all the people in our church where I am the pastor are all 6-year-old kids. He has revealed that we have no responsibilities, no expectations of how or when and no pressure to perform! Why? Because Jesus had none. He responded to the voice of His Daddy in Heaven. His Daddy and our Daddy in Heaven is perfect. Jesus did not know what He was going to do until He saw Him doing it. Our culture has corrupted us to think that we need to “grow up” and become more controlling and manipulating and more responsible and more paranoid. A healthy 6-year-old child is eager to learn how to live and play and have fun! When we “grow up,” according to our culture, we learn how to be less trusting and much more serious. I encourage you to be Daddy in Heaven Centered all the time! This experience will empower you to keep your eyes on Him and allow Him to reveal what He sees you thinking, feeling and doing! Learn to Live Lightly like a child! Enjoy His Overflowing, Real and Eternal Life, More and Better Life than You Ever Dreamed of! (John 10:10) You will find yourself with the Right People at the Right Place in His Transforming Time Faithfully Fulfilling His Perfect Plan with Miracle Manifestations Beyond Belief ! It may take lots of practice, but eventually you will experience and enjoy: 2020 Vibrant Vision! n Dr. Dan Woodworth earned his Doctor of Ministry (DMin) degree from the King’s University in Los Angeles in 2009. His passion is to encourage and empower people with the transforming power of hope and healing to become all they are created to be. He and his beautiful bride, Irene, have planted three churches. They are in the process of creating a cross/cultural, cross/generational healing community solving pressing problems in Boise and beyond. He may be reached at, or visit his website at

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10-5 Mon-Sat or by appt. Christian Living | January / February 2020 15

Dee Sarton

Keeping busy in her life’s next chapter

COVER STORY Dee Sarton is shown with members of Rebuilding Generations, a group that is restoring the vehicle shown here, which resembles the one used in all of the Boise Harvest Crusade’s materials. Dee is actively involved with the Boise Harvest Crusade, which will take place in May. (Photo by Stephen Testardi)

By Sandy Jones “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” — Ephesians 2:10 NLT Longtime area residents know her as news anchor Dee Sarton, who for 40 years gave us the good, the bad and the ugly news on Channel 7 KTVB. Her steadfast presence itself was reassurance that even in the worst of times, everything was going to be all right. Last April we were all surprised by the announcement of her upcoming retirement. Personally, my heart sank — the 4 o’clock news would never be the same! I’ve been fortunate; my path and Dee’s have crossed a few times since then, and like everyone else, I’ve asked: “Now what?” Late in November I was blessed to sit down with Dee as she shared about her next chapter. “It goes back to kindergarten,” Dee started. Her father was a high school teacher in Silverton, Colorado at the time, and Dee vividly remembers going to church on Christmas Eve in a snow-framed, little

16 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

white chapel. Cold outside. Warm inside. Sitting between her parents as they watched third graders in bathrobes playing out the Christmas scenes just like in churches around the world every Christmas. “I remember sitting there, and I have no words to describe it, but I believed it, and I knew that I believed it, and I was so happy to believe it!” Dee still has the angel Christmas ornament her kindergarten Sunday School teacher gave her that year. Raised in a Christian home, Dee always wanted to go to church, and was greatly involved. Once in college though, Dee took Philosophy 101, where she heard about different viewpoints. One day the assignment was to write a paper either to prove, or disprove, the existence of God. With her love of learning Dee was a good student, and coupled with her love of the Lord, she quickly chose to prove the existence of God. She worked diligently on this paper and proudly turned it in, only to have it returned to her days later with a failing grade. Devastated, Dee challenged her professor, asking ‘why?’. The professor was quick to point out that while the paper was well written, it was full of feelings, not facts. No supportive evidence to back up Dee’s claims.

This hit Dee hard. The professor was right, and Dee began to question if she had believed merely because her parents believed, or if it was all based on feelings? Doubt began to creep in, a little at first, then more and more; next Dee stopped going to church altogether. It was early in her career. Dee was busy, and enjoying her work in broadcasting. Like so many others she says, “I went through that period of doubting, drifting and leaving, and really became Dee without the Lord in my life. I’m not proud of that time, and I’m grateful that God brought people into my life to remind me that He hadn’t let go of me and was still there if I would call out to Him.” One of these people was a lady Dee took aerobics classes with. Something came up after class one day about God; when Dee’s response was about church, the woman’s reply was, “I would have never guessed you’re a Christian.” Dee said that hit her like a 2x4! She hadn’t drifted so far that she’d stopped seeing herself as a Christian, and that phrase stuck in her mind. “I would have never guessed you’re a Christian.” This was an early step to God drawing Dee back. The most important influence was the wife of a co-worker, a friend named Linda Murphy, who started inviting Dee to church. Being the nice person she is, Dee would tell her, “Oh sure Linda, yeah I’ll come.” After putting it off as long as she could, Dee felt that she finally had to go. Arriving late, she slid in next to Linda as the old hymns, so familiar from her childhood, played. It was beautiful, and the words — truths buried in her heart years before — started running through her mind. The pastor, David Roper, was a teacher like none Dee had ever heard. By Dee’s account, she was captivated by this “deep thinker” who “had so many insights into the original language of the Scripture and the history surrounding the story.” That first sermon was on how God will equip you for serving Him. Pastor Roper explained that you don’t have to be a super Christian; God has prepared works for you and it’s His grace that allows us to be a part of it. In other words, it’s not about you but about God, and when you trust Him, life can be a grand adventure. At the end of the service Pastor Roper invited everyone to say a simple prayer that God would use them that week. Dee says, “I remember wanting to know that kind of relationship with God. I bowed my head and just said, ‘Oh Lord forgive me. I am a crummy Christian.’ Ending with, ‘I’m so sorry for turning my back on this gift of faith that You’d given me years ago. I want to come back, and if You would use me, please do. I don’t blame You if You don’t, but please do.’” The next week found Dee speaking at what was then Northwest Nazarene College, to a class of students not much younger than herself. During the Q&A, a young woman asked what it was like to be a Christian in journalism. Dee found herself explaining how easy it was to get caught up in what can become a very self-centered industry, and how hard it was to fight against that. She went on to explain that she had wandered from her own faith and was just coming back. As she left the class, Dee asked herself why she’d shared so much private information with this group of virtual strangers. As she got into her car berating herself, she suddenly realized that God had answered her prayer — He had used her! This gave her great hope and confirmed that you don’t have to be perfect for God to use you. Dee’s quick to point out that she also knew she had to repent for the things she’d done and acknowledge that she’d gone her own way and not His. She returned to church the following Sunday, and Pastor Roper finished his sermon with an opportunity for members of the congregation to share their stories about how God had used them during the week. Many wonderful stories were told that morning. All the while Dee kept telling God she wasn’t ready to share just yet. As time went by and Pastor Roper was beginning his final prayer, Dee said her own safe prayer: “Lord, I know you wanted me to share, and I just can’t, I just don’t see how I can, but have him ask for just one more and I will.”

As Pastor Roper closed, he asked for one more story, and Dee knew it was hers. She recalls, “From that moment on I realized that God does indeed have a grand adventure for us, and all we have to do is step into it. We don’t have to be good enough. We don’t have to be perfect. We don’t have to earn His love, but when you start to experience Him in your life that way...the awakening that is taking place creates a hunger in you to know more.” What may have started as an emotion sparked Dee’s desire to learn, and to grow in apologetics. She gives people like David Roper, C.S. Lewis and, later, Ravi Zacharias and Del Tackett credit for being a big part of that journey. Truthfully, being a Christian doesn’t guarantee an easy life, and Dee’s no different than any other Christian. In the years since fully embracing her faith, she and her family have dealt with difficult and trying situations like everyone else, but she says, “In every instance God has proven Himself worthy of my highest praise. He is everything to me. He is as Psalm 46:1 says ‘our refuge and strength, an ever present help in times of trouble.’” During her last broadcast in June of 2019, Dee shared on air that her retirement was going to be about faith, family and friends. Faith because that’s the most important thing overall. Family because, now retired, she can better prioritize family time and what she sees as a calling for this season of life — grandmotherhood. Friends because Dee confesses that friendship is something she has to work at, unlike others to whom it appears to come naturally. Dee confides, “I really want to learn to be a good friend.” Returning to the topic of faith, Dee wasn’t sure how that would play out in retirement when she first said it; she just knew she was willing and knows God loves to hear, “I’m available.” It wasn’t long before her friend Pastor Clint Henry called, asking if she’d be interested in being involved with the Greg Laurie Boise Harvest Crusade coming in May. Dee follows Greg Laurie on YouTube and social media but had not yet heard about the Crusade. She says the more she learned, the more excited she got, and now believes that God is in this event and He’s on the move here in the Treasure Valley. “It kind of goes back to my own faith journey. What brought me back to church,” Dee said, explaining her friend, Linda, “was very persistent, to the point of being kind of obnoxious.” Dee goes on, “But she didn’t give up on me; she knew I needed Jesus. She could see that, and I thank God for her and her persistence. “Now we have the opportunity as people who know God’s goodness, know His grace...and have a story to tell... It’s our chance to be a ‘Linda’ in someone else’s life by inviting them to the Boise Harvest Crusade. I think we need to be praying for those we will invite right now and be ready for what God is going to do.” As our time together came to a close, Dee shared a poem from David Roper’s book, “Strength of a Man,” that has long inspired her: Father, where shall I work today, And my love flowed warm and free. Then He pointed me out a tiny spot, And said, “Tend that place for me.” I answered quickly, “Oh, no, not that. Why, no one would ever see, No matter how well my work was done. Not that little place for me!” The word He spoke, wasn’t stern, He answered me tenderly, “Nazareth was a little place, And so was Galilee.” (author unknown) Dee explained, “For most of us the greatest things we will ever do will be simply sharing with a friend or a family member or neighbor. It isn’t very glamorous, but it’s a Nazareth or Galilee, and that’s where we really get to see God working through us for His glory. Remember, ‘we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.’” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT) n

Christian Living | January / February 2020 17

AWAKEN Hope Idaho

Moms in Prayer to host major event By Gaye Bunderson

Editor’s note: Christian Living first featured Moms in Prayer in a late 2016 issue. Now, the organization is taking on a big project locally. Thinking about mothers kneeling in prayer for their children evokes an endearing mental image of maternal devotion. But Moms in Prayer International, the organization, is a powerhouse group of women battling for the souls of today’s kids and, hence, tomorrow’s leaders. It is a global-wide force of females that lifts youngsters, schools, and school staff up in godly petition with all their faithful might. The Idaho chapter of Moms in Prayer has been around for decades. But now, in 2020, the chapter will host its first-ever major event here in the Treasure Valley. Awaken Hope Idaho is set for Saturday, March 7, at Valley Shepherd Church of the Nazarene, 150 W. Maestra St. in Meridian. “Idaho has never hosted a Moms in Prayer event like this. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Karla Slonaker, local event coordinator, said. “People will be coming here from all over the region.” Karla and Robin Elliott, Idaho state Moms in Prayer coordinator, said they are praying for a turnout of at least 700 women. “Our biggest hope is that the women God wants to be there WILL be there,” Karla said. “The women who come will be encouraged, inspired, and equipped.” Karla and Robin have other goals for the event, including that 30 percent of moms who come will be new to Moms in Prayer. But they stress that anyone is welcome, both mothers and non-mothers — just anyone with an interest in prayer, the Gospel, and God. “There will be prayer at the event,” Karla said, “and 70 percent of the content is not directly for moms.” She lists what she calls “three intentions” for Awaken Hope Idaho, including: 1. Worship that awakens 2. Biblical messages that empower 3. Prayer that will shape the next generation Robin focuses in on the key word in the event’s name by saying, “Those who feel hopeless and overwhelmed will leave with hope.” Speakers for the event include: • Moms in Prayer president Sally Burke, who will speak on God’s desire to awaken hope in people and help them overcome fear, discouragement, and disappointment • Cancer survivor Vivian Mabuni, who will speak on encouragement and raising up the next generation of leaders • Crystal Miller, Columbine High School tragedy survivor Robin, who has served as the Idaho state Moms in Prayer leader for several years, explained that Awaken Hope conferences are held worldwide, wherever there is a Moms in Prayer organization — and they are scattered throughout the globe. She recently met a woman who participated in an Awaken Hope event in India. “Moms and grandmas around the world are all praying for their kids,” Robin said. Though originally started by a Canadian woman in 1984, Moms in Prayer has spread throughout the U.S. and jumped a number of oceans to encompass women in such disparate places as Europe, South America, Africa, and Asia. The group is also inclusive of women of varying ages. “My group has 45- to 75-year-olds in it,” Karla said. Robin said her own mother recently joined her first Moms in Prayer group at age 84. There are young mothers in the organization as well, with “young moms” defined as women with children in 5th grade or under. There are 61 Moms in Prayer leaders in Idaho and 31 of them are young moms, according to Robin, who said she is also starting to hear more and more from preschool moms and recently heard from a new mom who wanted to know more about Moms in Prayer so she could begin praying for her infant.

18 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

Karla Slonaker, right, is local event coordinator for Awaken Hope Idaho. Robin Elliott, right, is Idaho state Moms in Prayer coordinator. The Awaken Hope Idaho conference, sponsored by Moms in Prayer, is set for March 7 in Meridian. (Photo by Gaye Bunderson)

Moms in Prayer tries to cover as many schools as it can in prayer, and members have a heart for schools that aren’t yet covered by prayer. Of the 765 schools in Idaho, only 107 are covered in prayer, Robin said, and the organization wants people to “adopt” uncovered schools. Generally, as it starts out, a school is prayed for when a Moms in Prayer member has a child attending that institution. Together, members pray for that child, that school, and for a designated Teacher of the Week that they select from school information. “We want school staff to be known for high moral values and to teach and lead with integrity,” Robin said. They also pray for schools’ and students’ safety, and for staff and students’ salvation, and consider that their prayers will have longterm results. “What happens in schools impacts our futures,” Karla said. The group’s website is There is also a Moms in Prayer Idaho Facebook page that has more than 1,000 members. To register for Awaken Hope Idaho, or for more information, go to n

Christian Living | January / February 2020 19

MOM Keep Calm

In 2020, resolve to be putdown-free

your kids to remember how it felt when they were put down. Doing so will make them more mindful of the words they use when speaking to each other. Discuss how harsh words hurt and make it hard to trust and be open with each other. Ask your kids, “Wouldn’t it be great to know that we are not only family, but people who love and care about each other too?” 3) Explain that one of the best ways to avoid putting others down is by taking time to first understand what we are feeling. When we work at avoiding our own negative feelings, we often end up lashing out at others. Encourage your kids to ask themselves, “What am I feeling?” and “Why am I feeling this way?” Doing this will help them both understand themselves better and avoid hurting others. 4) Repeat this commitment every day in 2020!

By Janet Lund

Family Resolution

Kick off the new year with a resolution that will nurture your relationships forever. Commit to be putdown-free in 2020! You may be thinking, “That’s impossible in my house!” This may feel like an unreachable goal. We are all sinful. We all make mistakes. But if you commit to this, your chances of nurturing your home into a healthy habitat will be much higher than just hoping. Over the years, I have witnessed families where putdowns reigned in the home. It was painful to watch walls build up between family members. The family unit lacked warmth and care for each other. It was ruled by sarcasm and snide remarks, instead Janet Lund of love and laughter. Back in the Day You are the grownup. You are the parent. You Back in my youth ministry days, I had the kids sign a putdown are in charge. So, lead your kids. Help them grow and mature into healthy individuals who are compassionate communicators. Together covenant at the beginning of each retreat. We would discuss what putdowns were, how they can hurt a person, and why they damage make a pact to speak and act with kindness. relationships. It was a great way to kick off a weekend together. It really helped the kids be more mindful of what they said through4 Steps to Create a Putdown Covenant: out the weekend. When there was a putdown, we would pause and 1) Get a piece of paper and pens. At the top of the paper, title it, discuss it. “The [your name] Family Putdown Covenant of 2020.” Below the title, write down how you will act towards each other. Work on this Beyond Home together. As a mom, it is important to set a good example for your kids. Your Here is an example: kids are always watching and listening even when you are sure they “We commit to working together as a family to create a putdownare not. (I know I was!) free environment in our home! We will strive to be mindful of the Being putdown-free is an important thing to live out in every area words we say, our body language, and our attitudes. If we break this of your life. Putdowns injure all relationships whether they are with covenant, we promise to apologize for our words and actions. We family, friends, acquaintances, or co-workers. commit to discussing the situation with respect. We will do our best to listen well and calmly share what we are feeling so we can better understand each other.” Women and Words 2) Take turns sharing an example of when you felt put down. Ask Especially as women it is important to watch our tongues. the following questions: “How did it make you feel?” Or “How did From the very first day on the playground, boys work through their you feel about being with that person afterward?” It’s important for arguments by yelling and punching each other. Girls, however, are

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20 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

more “discreet” in their fights. Hurtful words are spoken either face to face or spread through gossip. Nonverbal language like eye rolling, “circling the wagons” when a new girl wants to join the group, or ignoring another girl’s presence are other ways to put another girl down. Boys are often reprimanded for getting into fights at school, but girls often get away with their more secretive behavior. Unfortunately, as grownups some women continue to use these same techniques in the workplace, at social gatherings, on social media, in neighborhoods, and even in churches. It’s important to be aware of our mindset before joining a group of women. Our “cat claws” often come out and swipe when we feel tired, overwhelmed, or unattractive. Crossing paths with someone who is younger, in better physical shape, or wealthier may also set us off. If at any moment you feel inspired to say something negative, take time to reflect on why that is. The desire to say hurtful words most likely has more to do with how you are feeling about yourself or your situation than the person you are attacking.

Kick Off the Year Right

Lead your family into becoming the people God made you to be. Make positive words a habit in 2020 at home and beyond. Lead. Listen. Love. n Janet Lund is a relationship coach who specializes in nurturing the bond between moms and their teen/pre-teen daughters. She leads moms through coaching, speaking, and songwriting. Janet has spoken and performed in Canada, the United States, and Norway. Follow her on and visit her website at for parenting tools and words of support to be a calm mom.

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Christian Living | January / February 2020 21

GOD Dots

Couple finds they’re off on an adventure By Jim Day Hi, everybody! It has been a while since the last God Dots story. Health issues have kinda sidelined me, but hopefully I won’t miss another issue. Life is full of interruptions. Just when you think that everything is humming along… There is an amazing story that I had been working on, but it will have to wait for a little more info. In the meantime, I really wanted to share with you all that God has been doing with me. A little over a year ago, a small church in Hazelton, Idaho lost its pastor. I was asked if I could give an encouraging word once a month until they found a new pastor. It’s a small but lovely little church, and the people there love the Lord. They asked me several times if I would be interested in moving there and taking on the Jim Day position of pastor. I always told them no. I had lots of reasons / excuses. Our family is here in Boise. My wife (Cindy) and I homeschool two of our grandkids. We also care for Cindy’s mom, who has dementia. Our doctors are all here. We have property here. What I didn’t tell them was that I had tried to be a pastor before and felt like I had a failed. I didn’t think that I wanted to try that again. (Long story, don’t want to share.) We have been attending Bridgepoint Church in Boise, except when we went to Hazelton. Pastor Jeff Love of Bridgepoint preached a powerful message about the difference between being a “fan” and a “follower.” At the end of the message he asked the congregation, “What is God asking you to do that you may be reluctant or unwilling to do?” Cindy handed me a piece of paper and a pen and asked me to write down whatever came to mind. I simply wrote, “Hazelton.” As I showed her what I had written, she flipped over her program and, at the top of the page, she had written, “Hazelton.” We went home and prayed. Really hard! Not being sure, I asked the Lord to make it very clear to us that He was calling us to Hazelton. The series of events that followed were nothing less than miraculous. He brought people into our

lives to help finish all the projects around the home we’ve been living in locally, making quick work of what was left to be done. I thought these projects would be for us, but I came to see they are all for the next folks who will live in the home after we’ve gone. Cindy came to me and said that she felt God was telling her that we were to start with nothing and allow Him to provide all that was needed. We prayed about that. What did that mean exactly? A couple of days later, as Cindy was looking online at used furniture, she saw a chair that she really liked. She asked if we could go to Star and look at it. I told her that I was too busy with projects to go look at a chair that we really didn’t need. Of course, I was still thinking that we would move the furniture that we have, and the house in Hazelton is smaller than the house we own here, so there was no room for more. Cindy scheduled a meeting on a Monday with the lady who had the chair. By Sunday afternoon I was too sore to continue to work on the house projects and needed to take a day off. (I know better than to work on Sunday, but did anyway). Thought I would rest up Monday and recoup a little because I had a procedure on Tuesday for my back. I have bone spurs that aggravate the nerves in my lower back (incredibly painful). Anyway, long story short, Monday came and I had this overwhelming feeling that I needed to go with Cindy to see the chair that we didn’t need and were not going to buy. When we got there, Cindy loved the chair. Cindy and the lady selling it got to visiting and we told her about going to Hazelton. To our amazement, she had family in Hazelton. Not only that, but she had a connection to Bridgepoint Church as well. Her daughter attends there and has always been active in the church. She said that she felt like she was supposed to be a blessing to us (she didn’t know it, but she already was). She proceeded to give us the bedroom suite that was in her spare bedroom — beautiful wood bed, nightstands and a huge dresser, plus an end table and a lamp that goes with the chair.

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CHURCH DIRECTORY “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” — Thessalonians

Now, I do need to mention here that the furniture that she gave us is nicer than anything we have ever owned. Very nice stuff, really beautiful. We loaded the truck with the things we could and made arrangements to pick up the remainder. As we drove away with a load of fine furnishings, we praised God for the confirmation that we were doing exactly what He is calling us to do. God is calling us to Hazelton. So, we are off on a new adventure with the Lord. Please pray that the Lord does amazing things in Hazelton. Please pray for blessings for those who are willing to be obedient in the moment (the lady with the chair and any others that you may think of). Please pray that YOU might be obedient to what He is calling you to do. Then ask yourself, “What is God asking me to do that I may be reluctant or unwilling to do?” God loves you. He wants to be involved in your life. But you have to let Him in. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. — Revelation 3:20 NKJV In an upcoming issue: the story of Bob and JudyLynn Solberg. Until then, may God bless your socks off (then we will all be barefoot and happy). n It is my goal and wish for this column to be an avenue to share God Dots stories. Tell others about the things that God has done for you. Contact me at Somebody needs to hear your story.




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Christian Living | January / February 2020 23

THE Agostas

How four people became a family “I truly feel God chose those girls for us. We are four hearts woven together by God.” ~ Tia

Jeff and Tia Agosta went from being the foster parents of Bella, left, holding the “Adopted” sign, and Nova, being held by Tia, to being the girls’ “forever parents.” Now, the four of them are “Happily Forever Agosta.” (Courtesy photo)

By Gaye Bunderson In 2016 Jeff and Tia Agosta went to a party and, as occasionally happens at parties, they gained a new acquaintance. The Agostas didn’t really have a lot in common with their new friend, but they made it work. The Agostas met 4-year-old Arabella, and it was a meeting with a divine purpose. “Arabella walked by us in a bikini top and shorts, and her diaper was sticking out,” Tia said. Jeff Agosta is co-founder with Jesse Fadel of a comedy group called Praynksters. The party was a Praynksters event that included a barbecue for the homeless in partnership with Eastwind Community Church, where Jesse is associate pastor. Arabella came with her mother, and it just so happened that Arabella’s birthday was coming up. Jeff made a video featuring the 4-year-old receiving a gift, and the video became a YouTube hit. Sometime after that, Jeff made another video of Arabella (known as Bella) being taken to Disneyland by the Agostas, courtesy of Dutch Bros. Coffee. That all amounted to a lot of firsts in a little girl’s life. But the firsts for Bella go even further than that. She had spent her entire life in a homeless shelter. Suddenly, at a special party, she found a sense of security in the Agostas. “We took her to Chuck E. Cheese and the zoo,” Jeff said. “We went through a drive-through, and it was her first time.” She started spending the night at the Agosta home. “She stayed with us 80 percent of the time,” Jeff said. “She had never lived in a home before, or had a bed.” Prior to staying with the Agostas, Bella had been surviving on a diet of Mountain Dew and Spicy Cheetos. She wasn’t alone in her struggles — she has a sister named Jenova (known as Nova). Nova was a baby while Bella was enjoying the newness of a home and bed. Nova remained with her mother in a shelter, but the Agostas felt as concerned about her welfare as Bella’s. “I would stop at the shelter to check on her,” Tia said. The little girls and their mom were staying at City Light for Women and Children. At one point, for the children’s safety, Health & Welfare

24 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

went into City Light to get the children. The Agostas said it is very rare for H&W to go into a shelter to take children. The girls were given an “emergency placement” with the Agostas, who immediately became their foster parents. Jeff and Tia had not been foster parents before, had not gone through official channels, nor gotten the requisite training. “We were expedited,” Tia said. In what is known as Fictive Kinship, the Agostas were deemed close enough to the girls to be given care of them as foster parents. They received the required training while they were serving as Bella’s and Nova’s foster mom and dad. Bella clearly loved her foster parents, and it didn’t take long for Nova to feel right at home with them too. “The baby connected with Tia — she is so attached to Tia,” Jeff said. “God knew that Tia was her mother.” The Agostas stress that the goal for fostering is always reunification with the birth parents. “We took that very seriously,” Jeff said. They also respected the state-mandated parent visits with the children. “I would tirelessly be on the phone with the birth parents and encouraging them,” Tia said. “We worked for reunification. We had sleepless nights about it.” Ultimately, the birth parents’ rights were terminated, and with breathless speed the Agostas became the adoptive parents of Bella and Nova. “We became a family of four in one day,” they said. The official date was June 27, 2019. It was a Monday and Tia tells how she and Jeff went to Walmart immediately, trying to get all the supplies they needed for the kids. She was even on the phone with her mom, making sure she got everything — all the things that children require 24/7/365. The Agostas went through a 6-month trial period and went before a committee, part of a stringent process to make sure everything is going to work out in an adoption. But all requirements were met, and the Agostas are comfortable in their new status as parents. “I truly feel God chose those girls for us. We are four hearts woven together by God,” Tia said.

“There were so many things that had to fall into place,” Jeff said, including his meeting Jesse, co-forming Praynksters, going to a barbecue, and meeting Bella and her birth mom there. “I still check in on the birth mom to this day,” Tia said. “I want to give Bella a healthy connection to her.” The Agostas’ road to adoption didn’t come out of the blue; they had frequently talked about adoption during their 12-year marriage. Jeff had cancer as a child and as an adult is not able to be a biological father. He is 36 and Tia is 33. He said that after the kids were adopted, he joked with Tia, “We’re officially adults now.” Tia was always on board with adoption. “I’ve had a heart for adoption since I was a teen,” she said. “I wanted to adopt my whole class!” Being adoptive parents isn’t easy — but what parenting is? “You have to be adaptable,” Jeff said. They deal with the effects that a challenging childhood have had on Bella and Nova. “We take classes in childhood trauma,” Tia said. “I can’t change the beginning of the children’s story, but I sure can change the ending. Forever, this is our family, and family is huge to us.” They are taking equally good care of their marriage. “We still take vacations alone together; we still need to do that,” Jeff said. Tia, who worked as a nail tech, accepted a position in late October of 2019 to work with Health & Welfare as a peer mentor for foster parents. She’s committed to helping others through the experience. The couple takes their daughters to church, and occasionally the birth mom comes as well. Bella is now 8, and Nova is 3. The Agostas share a story about Nova’s innocent prayers to her heavenly Father. She says: “Once upon a time, there was God. Amen.” Once upon a time, there were four people living separate lives. Now they’re linked together forever, and God had everything to do with it. Amen. n The links to Bella’s videos are and For a link to Boise: The Video Game, a creation of Jeff Agosta, go to

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Christian Living | January / February 2020 25


Lessons from the Parable of the Stove Joel Lund If you’ve been in a leadership position for any length of time, you have probably heard the Parable of the Stove. It goes like this: You are hiking through deep snow in the dead-cold of winter, alone. Even with your snowshoes, it has been hard going for many hours. Really hard going. Night is falling and it is getting steadily colder. You’re not sure where the cabin is that you have been trying to find for over an hour. Hungry and exceedingly tired, you continue to tromp through the white powder. Doubt claws at the edge of your confidence. You look up and peer through a narrow clearing in the tall firs. There it is! There’s the cabin! With renewed vigor you move faster than you thought possible. Huffing and sweaty, you finally reach the cabin. Dismayed, you realize that before you can enter the unlocked, Joel Lund rustic building, you first need to clear the snow wall blocking its frozen door. By the time you throw your shoulder into the stout wooden door, you are exhausted. But the door gives way and you are inside. Quickly, you light and trim the lantern, and set it on the table. A lovely yellow glow illuminates the small structure you’ll call home for this night. You go to the stove. On one side is a stack of dried wood and kindling, enough to last more than a week. On the other side is a box full of old newspaper. You drop to your knees and open the door to the stove. Then, at the top of your lungs, you bellow into the stove, “Throw me some heat and I’ll build you a fire!”

And The Lesson Of The Parable Is...

Things have to go in a specific order to work correctly. Or to work at all. So, yelling at the stove won’t generate heat. At least, not enough…as soon as you stop yelling! Now, wishing for things to change in our lives is fine. People do it all the time. But your wishing — no matter how sincere, urgent, intense, focused or heartfelt — won’t light the stove. Only your action will. And within that truth, the first lie enters into the picture.

The Secret Lie About the Secret Path

You see, I first wrote this article in 2012. And the article was actually an early blog of mine. It was short and ended with just one more paragraph right after the parable. It was comprised of a series of four

questions intended to act as “a CTA” (call to action). Because I’d been learning from the best coaching gurus that “the specific order” required a CTA right at the end of whatever you were using as a means to communicate to your intended audience. In my case, blogging was the means. My intent was to build a name for myself in the wild and trendy world of blogging (back then, it still was). Given my leadership background, I was quite certain that with some focused effort on my part — in other words, putting things in the right order so they’d work correctly — my post-soul-sucking corporate career would break out of its cocoon. My newly minted life as a business coach and consultant would take off, like a beautiful monarch butterfly. The only thing that stood in the way to my success was getting “the specific order to work correctly.” Days of research turned into weeks, then months. A lot of investment went into training materials. And it turned out that there was no specific order; there were thousands. Gurus were everywhere. Searching for guidance on Google only left me with more conviction that I needed more and more information to get the specific order correct. But that meant learning from more and more gurus, each one promoting a different “correct” sequence. If that wasn’t maddening enough, we saw others succeeding. They were posting it on Facebook, so it had to be true. Which could only mean we were doing something wrong. Or worse, we didn’t know enough yet; we were missing a key element in the specific order. Or worst of all, we were wrong. So, I plowed through getting four coaching certifications. Surely, that would help! If 20 years of leadership experience wasn’t enough, then piling up certifications would get the job done. My coaching and consulting career would finally launch, big time. In fact, nothing really seemed to make any difference. We’d get some new-client wins, conclude that they came because of the specific order we’d implemented, and go all in on replicating it. And…then that order wouldn’t deliver again. What was happening? Where was God in all this? We’d prayed prior to launching each new venture and kept praying all along the confusing pathway. We’d even yell from time to time at the hypothetical stove. Our urgent quest for providential clarity went unanswered.

Ronald Jeleniewski

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The Bald Lie About Leaning In

Around this time, the phrase “leaning in” became so popular shortly after the book by the same name came out that it showed up in sermon illustrations. The idea behind the phrase is that we should all move into roles of leadership, rather than be a habitual follower. In our culture, that sounds wise, bold and assertive. But when you pull away the veneer of both lies, they form the whole of Satan’s promise to Adam and Eve: the correct order to a life filled with purpose, meaning, and happiness is one where we determine our future. Learn the secrets and, boom, it will all come together. Your life will align with what the world defines as successful. At its worst, this concept — often commended by believers of all stripes — is summarized in the “Law of Attraction.” Each of us has the capacity to change our mindset…and our future…by visualizing good things coming our way. And when we do that enough, the Universe will respond by sending us good things.

Ultimately, developing a successful business is fraught with challenges, whatever your spiritual situation. And the truth is that 70 percent of small businesses still experience complete failure within 10 years ( Is it reasonable to expect a different outcome for believers? Nope. Knowing this to be true, we pivoted a few years ago to partnering with one or two small business owners. Because they were mature believers and historically successful businesspeople, what could go wrong? Again, much prayer went into these collaborative ventures. But by now you already feel it coming, right? Not only did the partnerships not work out, they cost us a fortune. We’ve been so financially wounded that from a worldly point of view, it could hardly be worse. Painfully, our friendships were sundered. The plight of Job (chapter 3) has a lot of resonance in our home. But we came to realize that the successes you see others enjoying on Facebook are not often real. And comparing your life to theirs is like comparing your bloopers to their showcase reel.

The Problem & the Truth

Going Forward in Faith

Of course, none of these ideas has any basis in Scripture. Rather, all of it comes straight out of millennia of repackaged heresies. In short, all of it mashes up into a contemporary version of Satan’s lie that we can be like God, “knowing good and evil.” (Gen. 3:5) In contrast, what we know from God’s Word is that this world is not as good as it gets. Not only that, it is always full of hardship. Even more so for believers! The Apostle Paul infuses virtually all of his letters with strong guidance about how we are to expect and endure our inevitable sufferings. (Rom. 8:17-18; 2 Cor. 1: 5-7; etc.) More so, the notion that we can, as humans, “discover the secret for success” (or whatever your favorite configuration of a similar promise looks like), also flies in the face of God’s Word. The Psalmist states plainly that “unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain.” (Ps. 127:1)

We’re finding ways to make lemonade out of our business lemons. We trust (some days better than others) that God is in control, and the house He is building is not quite what we expected. And we take comfort in the words of C.S. Lewis: If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world. This world is not our home. We’re just passing through. n Joel is a certified master coach, business strategist, and author. Most importantly, he’s worked with a lot of people just like you. Chat with him. There’s no charge. Schedule here:


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Christian Living | January / February 2020 27

REAL Man’s Toolbox

Planning for the future as a godly man

shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, By Leo Hellyer or pain; the first things have passed away.” Men, another year is upon us. A lot of unknowns face us. At times, the uncertainness of As we look at this new year, and as we look at the future can be unnerving. What will our lives the rest of our lives, there is plenty to be aware be like at the beginning of 2021? Where will we of. Awareness and worry are two very different be in our careers? Where will we be financially? things. When we have a relationship with God Where will we be health-wise? Where will my Almighty — Father, Son and Holy Spirit — we walk with God be in a year? have no need to worry. We need to nurture and We may feel that most of our future is beyond expand our relationship with Him on a daily our control, but is that really true? Many of us basis. We have a precious gift that many of our men — and many of our coworkers, friends coworkers and acquaintances have not received and acquaintances — feel as though we’re just yet. Some of them are not aware of this gift, running in a giant hamster ball with no control some feel that they are not worthy of this gift, over what happens or where we are going. If and others have said that they do not want this you are a man of God, you are in a much difgift. ferent situation. As Christian men, we have a Leo Hellyer We have a responsibility to take advantage of relationship with the Creator of the Universe, any divine appointments that God gives us, to God Almighty, who loves us unconditionally and wants the share the Good News with those He brings across our path. best for us. God has given us His Word to guide us in our jour- When we care about someone, we do not keep secrets from ney through this fallen world that we live in. them. How many of our friends and acquaintances have we We should not feel powerless and constantly worrying about shared this gift from God with? We can have a lasting impact our future because God has a plan for our lives, including our on the people God brings into our lives. We do not know when daily needs. In Matthew 6:31-33, Jesus speaks to us, saying, our time will be over on this planet. We definitely do not know “Do not be anxious then, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ when other people will be called to meet their Maker. or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘With what shall we clothe As we ponder the new year and what might happen in our ourselves?’ For all these things the Gentiles eagerly seek; for lives during this year, let’s also include those around us. As we your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. pray for wisdom, courage, blessings, direction and comfort But seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all among other things for ourselves, let’s not forget to include these things will be added to you.” the other people that God has brought into our lives. This is When we were conceived, God began to put His plan for a perfect place to remember the words in Matthew 5:14-15, our lives into place. All of our lives God has been guiding, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill canprotecting, equipping, challenging, and strengthening us for not be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under a the journey that we are on. God will continue to walk with us bushel, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who through our lives all the way to when we are living with Him are in the house.” for eternity in Heaven. In Philippians 1:6 Paul instructs those Don’t keep God’s plans for man a secret. Share them with in Philippi, and also us, “For I am confident of this very others, and let the light of truth shine everywhere you go. n thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” God will constantly be moldLeo Hellyer is a non-staff pastor with a local church and has been maring us into who He has designed us to be. ried to his wife Norma for more than 45 years. The couple volunteered As we complete our short time here on Earth, there will be with the Boise FamilyLife Ministry Team for 20 years. They are both difficulties that will come upon us. There will be less than deemployed by Boise Rescue Mission Ministries, Norma at City Light sirable events that will occur in our lives. There will be things Home for Women & Children and Leo at River of Life Rescue Mission. that don’t go our way, because we live in a fallen world. In the Leo is also the President and Chief Firearms Instructor with Helping midst of these things, we must remember that God gives us Hands Firearms Training LLC. If you have questions about Real Man’s many promises. One of those promises is found in Revelation Toolbox, or need other assistance, Leo may be reached at silverplate426@ 21:4, where we read, “and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there or 208-340-5544. “Family Picnics” Are So Much Fun! One-piece Picnic Tables 4’ to 20’ Starting at $125*

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6 steps to decrease inflammation

2. Eat Chromium-Rich Foods. Ideally, you’re also going to get foods that are very high in a type of mineral called chromium. What is chromium? The following is an anti-inflammation diet plan. Chromium plays a role in the insulin-signaling pathways that allow our bodies to control the amount of 1. Eat Foods with Protein, Fiber and sugar we take in, helping balance blood glucose levHealthy Fats to Balance Your Blood Sugar. els and giving us stable energy. Chromium picolinate When it comes to inflammation, we must start with is found in high levels in vegetables like nutritiondiet. First, let me kind of shape a meal for you. Iderich broccoli, which is the ideal superfood for diabetally, your meals are going to be high in three things: ics in helping balance out blood sugar levels. protein, fiber and healthy fats. So protein foods like 3. Consume Food Rich in Magnesium. Over wild salmon and free-range eggs, high-fiber foods 80 percent of us suffer from at least a low level of like split peas and figs, and healthy fats like coconut a magnesium deficiency, and it can result in leg oil and MCT oil are going to help balance out those cramps, insomnia and, yes, diabetes. Magnesium is blood sugar levels. So include lots of protein in your essential for cellular health and is a critical componew diabetic diet plan. nent of over 300 biochemical functions in the body. After wild-caught salmon, go for grass-fed beef, Rosie Main Magnesium has been shown to also help blood sugar organic chicken and turkey. Fiber-rich foods are levels, so eat magnesium-rich foods like grass-fed even more important, including artichokes, green beef, certain types of nuts and seeds, and vegetables like spinach and leafy vegetables, celery, nuts and seeds (like chia seeds, flaxseeds, Swiss chard. pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts, celery). A high-fiber diet will 4. Stay Away from Sugar. What’s going to throw off your blood support detoxification and healthy blood sugar levels. Also, start ussugar? Sugar and carbohydrates. Now, you want some carbohydrates, ing coconut oil, which is great for burning fat. Coconut oil benefits but just a smaller amount alongside healthy fats, fiber and protein. blood glucose levels, too. Start cooking with coconut oil and using If not, your blood sugar is going to go up and down. Of utmost coconut milk or coconut oil in a morning superfood shake. Coconut importance, you want to stay away from all sugar the best you can. oil, ghee or grass-fed butter all work for balancing out blood sugar In particular, refined sugar rapidly spikes blood glucose — soda, fruit levels. A good diabetic diet plan includes those healthy fatty acids. juice and other sugary beverages are the worst culprits. These forms So remember to get in protein, fiber and healthy fats during all of your meals. of sugar enter the bloodstream rapidly and can cause extreme elevaBy Rosie Main

30 January / February 2020 | Christian Living

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tions in blood glucose. You want to replace sugar with stevia, a no-calorie natural sweetener. A little bit of raw honey in moderation can be okay, too. Once your diabetes is reversed and you’re where you should be, raw local honey is another sweetener you can consider, as well as blackstrap molasses. 5. Avoid Grains. Grains are another problem, especially gluten-containing grains, white flour products, wheat bread, even whole grain breads and oatmeal. These all contain large amounts of carbohydrates that are broken down into sugar within a few minutes of consumption. What’s the deal with gluten? Well, it can cause intestinal inflammation, which affects hormones like cortisol and leptin, and can lead to spikes in blood sugar. I would remove all grains from your diet for your first 90 days on this diabetic diet plan, and after that time, you can introduce back in sprouted ancient grains like sorghum flour and kamut in small amounts. 6. Remove Dairy from Your Diet, Too. The other foods you want to eliminate are going to be conventional dairy products. Conventional cow’s milk should be eliminated especially for type 1 diabetics. While dairy can be a fantastic food for balancing blood sugar if it comes from sheep or goat milk, or A2 cows, I recommend that you stay away from all other forms of dairy because the A1 casein produced by conventional cows will harm the body and trigger an immune response similar to gluten. Sugar is typically the root cause to inflammation and disease. Try this diet first in any endeavor to help decrease inflammation. n Rosie Main, DC, owns Main Health Solutions at 2300 W. Everest Lane, Suite 175, in Meridian. She is also the host of Maximized Living Radio on 94.1 The Voice and KIDO 580 AM. For more information, visit

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