Weekly Favorite Links (Jan 29-Feb 4, 2015)

(Photo Via Kristen Merie & A Cup of Tea)

Before I share all my favorite links this week, I want to talk about my life for a bit. Last week was a stressful week. While I thought I had planned a week full of down time with only a handful of things to do, my schedule filled up fairly quickly with spontaneous activities and meetings. While all the spontaneity was good for my soul in the long run, I still wrestled with anxiety. This led to a lot of sleepless nights because I couldn’t turn my brain off. And if you know me, I love my sleep so not sleeping well was extra hard.

In addition, the sore throat that I mentioned about last week gave me a lot of anxiety because I really didn’t want to get sick. By God’s grace, it didn’t turn into a full-blown cold. At the start of this week, I thought it did, but I was only experiencing my first-ever symptoms of allergies. Still, there are lessons to be learned. God is teaching me to rest in Him in my anxiousness. Every time I become worried about things outside of my control, the Spirit reveals to me my lack of trust in my Savior. It’s only when my body begins to break down, physically and/or emotionally, that I’m forced to recognize my own limitations and how I CANNOT do it all.

It may seem like a silly lesson to learn repeatedly, but I don’t think I’m truly repentant about it. I may be repentant about it in the moment, but time always reveals where our hearts stand. I can’t meet up with every person, I can’t pray and serve all those that I feel strongly convicted to care for, I can’t bake a bazillion things that I want to learn, and I can’t perfectly balance work and family and friends and leadership responsibilities….. the list goes on. On top of all the anxiety, last week unexpectedly brought about some unwanted emotional pain, anger, and bitterness from the past. At what seemed like the worst timing ever, God sovereignly chose that moment in time to test my faith. And when I was in the midst of dealing with a myriad of flooding emotions, Psalm 46:10 came to mind. Be still, Endora. Abide in Me. Find rest in Me.

Humbling, much-needed reminders. It’s a constant struggle, but I’m thankful that it’s not a lonely battle.

Now onto the weekly faves! I’ve decided to add categories for easier scrolling! Yays. 🙂

Christianity:

24 Free eBooks – Another reason why Desiring God’s one of my favorite websites ever. I hope to finish all 24 books in the next couple of years. Finishing a book takes a lot more discipline when time is scarce.

When You Don’t Have Time to Pray – Perfectly relevant for me last week. Absolutely perfect.

7 Lessons from 50 Shades of Grey – I have not and will never read 50 Shades of Grey. I don’t care how great the story is, or how the romance gives the viewer warm and fuzzy feelings; I refuse to touch this novel and movie with a ten foot pole. I agree with a lot that Challies and Thorne have to say in this article. My opinion stems not only from my theological convictions, but from personal experience. I’m a struggling former addict of erotica, many years before this particular novel was even penned. I say “struggling” because it’s something that I still battle with from time to time. While I don’t read romance novels anymore, and I actively try to screen every form of entertainment that comes my way, the past still lingers. God willing, I will be sharing about the detrimental effects of erotica in my life on this blog sometime. It may take some boldness to share, but it’s worth doing because I’ve witnessed too many Christian women (and men) who are unaware of how dangerous fantasy is for our souls. Personally, I know how harmful it is to me. It’s easy to be fooled because sin is so momentarily gratifying, yet we fail to realize that it’s actually deadly. Church, we need to pray. We cannot stay silent on this issue.

How to Fall Out of Love – Wisdom and truth. “If you are standing somewhere, nursing a broken and bleeding heart, know this: God is willing and working His goodness in that brokenness. But also know this, the way through this is to love others with the same fervor and intensity and selflessness that you brought to your relationship. Nurture them, encourage them, delight in them, enjoy them. As your capacity to love grows, you will find that former flame no longer burning higher than all the others, but a mere light along the path that brought you into the most full and robust love there is. The love of God.”

3 Rules for Biblical Dating – “Always return your date home “more holy” than she was when you picked her up.” I really liked this last rule, which is more applicable to guys than to gals. But it’s something that females can also think about when they’re evaluating their relationships and whether they’re growing spiritually from it. Since a biblical dating perspective means pursuing marriage with someone else and reaching a verdict (to get married or not), it should reflect marriage. This will be something I’ll keep in mind for the future.

Food:

Smitten Kitchen shares how to make your own vanilla extract! I’m so excited to try this at home! When I first started baking in college, I used to constantly buy little bottles of vanilla extract until I switched over to the Costco-sized bottle. For those who don’t have a nearby Costco, those little vials really add up and start to cost you a lot of money! When that big bottle runs out, I’m going to try this recipe.

Maangchi is releasing her first cookbook, coming out in May 2015. I love her Korean cooking recipes, chock-full of detailed step-by-step instructions and video demonstrations, all for free on her website. Definitely buying this when it’s released!

Thai Yellow Curry Beef and Potatoes – One of the latest recipes from Pinch of Yum and the curry looks absolutely amazing.

Mason Jar Salads – A great idea for salads on the go! I’ve actually seen these cute salad in a jar being sold at a nearby local diner.

Spicy Garlic Eggplant and Ground Pork Noodles – Eggplant dishes are hard to perfect but when they’re cooked well, they’re delicious. I’m glad that Two Red Bowls decided to share her mother’s recipe on her blog! It looks delicious with the egg noodles.

Japanese Cheesecake – Need I say more?

Makeup:

Easy Brown Smokey Eyes by Lavender Blues – I know this gal and she’s insanely talented with makeup. Love this tutorial!

News:

Harper Lee has a Mockingbird sequel coming out? Stoked!

Taiwan Plane Crash - Pray for Taiwan and all the people involved in this tragedy.
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2 Comments

    • endorap says:

      Haha I don’t know yet. I think it’s all the dust and my office has really bad air circulation and I’m constantly sneezing/blowing my nose. And thanks for reading and commenting! Thankful to have an encouraging friend like you!

      Like

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