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Friday, December 31, 2010

The Journey....continues

I started off 2010 in a funk.  I felt that I had been overcome by my weight issues and didn't think I would ever find my way out of it.  I had fired my trainer (thank God she took me back) and finally decided to tell God that either HE himself could take this fat off of me or  I was just gonna be FAT.  With that first 'surrender' He began to work a work in me that took me from size 22 to size 14 in a few short months.  But He didn't stop April, at a Girls Get-A-Way retreat, through my testimony to many of you He began to birth a new thing in us.  Through 'Back to Eden' He gave me many of you and we began to walk together in your deliverance and in your victories over your weight.  Walking together we realized that so much of our 'issues' manifest themselves in extemperanous ways and that TOGETHER we were able to begin to overcome them and lose weight together.

The year continued and was full of more ups and downs then I thought I could ever be capable of living through.  I often joked with God. I told Him several times that He had my address wrong and had somehow mixed me up with Superman because the things that were happening were WAY WAY WAY out of my league.  I can remember almost faintly hearing my Lord chuckling, afar off.  Not maliciously but endearingly, like a father who is watching His child learn how to ride a bike.  Yes, she may fall and scrape her knee, but He would never allow anything horrible to happen to her.  Even as I cried, my way through, He was right there.  Picking me up, dusting me off but putting me right back on that bike.  I wanted off the bike, to be honest.  I didn't care if I EVER learned how to ride.  It was quite overrated.  I quit.  Lots of folks don't ride bikes.  WHATEVER.  I'll walk.

Yeah, but no.  It ain't over.  Fast forward to October.  I can't WAIT to meet some of you again or for the first time.  The Cane Creek Retreat.  In the midst of all the excitement and planning, I had yet another crisis at home.  All I could do was give it over to God and keep going.  "God, how on earth can you trust me with all of this?  I'm about to drop it all over the place and let everyone down!" I shouted to Him.  'Why NOW!"  His response, "Trust me,".  'Trust me?" That's what you say to the consummate control freak (ha!)  um, ok...I have no choice.  I left home and made my way to the creek, praying all the way and having to 'trust' God.  Very much easier said than done.  But to God be the glory, He stepped in and we had a GLORIOUS time.  One that was as much for me as it was for you all.  But it wasn't over. 

It had only just begun.  On Nov. 1st, I came across a prayer thingy...'31 days of Prayer for your Husband'.  Nov. 1st, God gave me an intercessor, a sister who would begin a daily regimen of prayer with me, that mid-way through seemed like it was having the OPPOSITE affect on our lives.  My head was spinning.  All hell was breaking loose.  I couldn't begin to imagine that my life would take the turn it took.  I hit 'bottom's bottom'.  But that was in my 'finite' understanding.  In truth, God was at work.  He was taking those daily prayers and stirring things up so that the 'semblence' of order would be able to make way for 'true order'.  He was in the midst of us each morning at sunrise and honoring our words.  He was giving us a bond of sisterhood that could not be created by blood but was created in heaven.  He was working things out for our good.  He was, indeed, bringing Romans 8:28 to life in our prayers. 

December 2nd, 31 days after our prayers started, God began to reveal another little glimpse of His plan.  In all the ups and downs, one thing was consistent - prayer.  So, the Prayer Conference line started (now on day 30) so that it could be more than just she and I (though for quite a few more days it was still just she and I on the line). 

But eventually, women from all over began joining at 6am Mon-Fri and pouring out their hearts to God.  Not just for themselves...they've/we've realized that the source of our strength is in intercessory prayer.  Praying for others means that there will always be someone praying for you especially when you/I can't pray for ourselves.  MY GOD there are some praying women on those calls.  Some I know by spirit, some I know by voice, all I know - are my sisters.  Without them I could do nothing.  This must be what God meant when He said, 'every joint supplieth' or when He said, 'the strong bear the infirmities of the weak'. 

So...we walk together into 2011.  Maybe not having accomplished every goal that we set for ourselves.  Possibly not achieving all the success that we desired.  But one thing is sure - we are still standing for a reason.  We are still here because we are More than Conquerors!  The thing that I've learned and it is my mantra, especially when I forget my 'faith colored' glassed and look at the world through the eyes of despair and forget for a moment that God is in control.  I remind myself...ITS ALREADY ALRIGHT! 

May God bless you and take you to higher heights and deeper depths in 2011.  May you find peace and success.  May you receive your healings, your blessings, your deliverances.  May you rejoice NOW because ITS ALREADY ALRIGHT!!!

If you'd like to join the week day 6am prayer conference call, text 'PRAY' to 704-493-2035 and you will be send the conference # and the pin.  Prayer changes things. 

Keep walking on water!!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Beef Lo-Mein

1lb of thin sliced lean steak (slivered)
10oz bag of stir fry veggies
1/2 bag frozen broccoli (about 5 oz - or you can use fresh)
1/2 box of Rice Pasta (spaghetti style - cooked)
1tsp Soy Sauce
1tsp Oyster sauce
1/4 c water
Lite Salt/Pepper to taste

Season steak with salt/pepper and brown on both sides.  (You can spray the pan with Pam if you don't have a non-stick).  Add veggies, sauce, water.  Simmer covered for 10 mins (until veggies thaw but are firm).  Add Rice Pasta and toss.  Spray with a couple skeets of Pam and enjoy!

Bottoms Up!

The joys of the bottom....

O my God, not my children!  This must be 'bottom'.  Jesus, all my finances????  Gone?  This must be 'bottom'.  All of my inventory, everything I have - well, this must be 'bottom'.  What doctor?  I have a devastating and disfiguring illness?  This must be 'bottom'.  My wife, turning her back on me and telling me to go to hell....surely, this must be 'bottom'.  Ahhh....finally some comfort.  My three best friends, they are coming to sit with me and keep me company...but what?  huh?  No, I didn't do anything to deserve this...what are you all talking about?  Ask for forgiveness?  This is happening TO me.  I didn't do anything to deserve IT...o my God, my best friends, turning on me....this must be 'bottom'.

God! It would be better than I had never been born.  That I never even lived than to have had to go through all this.  THIS must be my BOTTOM! (The story of Job, paraphrased)

So often, 'the bottom' is just the 'worst' place you can imagine being in 'right now' but if you hold on, your bottom will do one of two things....get worse (if its not the 'real bottom' its time....GET BETTER!

You see sometimes the bottom can become the very catalyst, the accelerant, the conduit YOU need to get to the TOP!  I believe that the 'very bottom' is not a solid hard surface at all but more likely compared to a TAUGHT trampoline....hit it hard enough and you can reach the SKY!  The good thing about the 'real bottom' is there ain't no where to go but UP!  Sometimes, in our stubborn, hard-headedness we won't do right with out the 'bottom'. 

Many of us can't stop smoking...until we are diagnosed with emphysema or bronchitis (bottom).  We can't stop sleeping around....until we are left lonely and our bodies ravaged with disease (bottom).  We can't stop eating inappropriately....until we have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes (bottom).  We can't pray and spend time with God.....until our cable is turned off (bottom).

Oftentimes we just DON'T do right until we hit our 'bottom'.

Congratulations Time:

Congrats Ms. Jailynn , she's down 9inchs in 4 weeks!
Congrats KT - back on track with a vengence!  So proud of your progress!

I was so glad to see so many of you at the Pray in/Weigh in but I wish that there would have been more 'good reports'. Some stayed the same but many gained.  We can blame it on the holiday season or the turkey or the weather or whatever.  But the truth of the matter is, we just didn't reach our 'bottom' yet.  You see, when you hit bottom, it doesn't have to be 'bikini' season for you to want to be healthy.  When you hit 'bottom' it won't matter that since you have on so many clothes, you can add however many layers of 'fat/fluff' underneath.  When you hit 'bottom' you will be ignited and catapulted into a serious commitment. 

So....For many of us, New Year's is a 'false' bottom.  We will look back over our past years and look in the mirror and then 'decide' that we are going to do better.  We have to do better.  Problem is, it won't be the momentum of your own 'bottom' it will be the whirlwind of marketing and advertising from all of the gyms and eating programs that will lull you into a false sense of 'this is it, I'm gonna do it this year'.  Good for them.  Getting you motivated is half of the battle.  But it is not the war.  STAYING motivated and making a true commitment to yourself and your family...that's when you've done it.  Let's do something different this year.  Let's DO IT for real!

Recipe: Beef Lo-Mein

Back to Eden - Bring a Buddy.  If you have not signed up for your personal Back to Eden Program and would like to get started first the year, you can do it with a friend for $70.  That is a one time fee - $35/each.  (offer available until Jan 4th, 2010).  Contact me directly at 704-493-2035 or via email at  You will receive your blueprint, your personal eating program, your measurements/weight tracking sheet, the fast track plan, personal consultation and continue to receive emails and recipes and be able to participate in upcoming activities*.

2011 Back to Eden Activities
B2E Boot Camp
Back to Eden Warm Weather Retreat
2nd Annual Back to Eden Fall Retreat
Monthly Pray in/Weigh in
B2E Food-Prep Sessions
...and much more - stay tuned for dates. 

Side note:  Georgia and Maryland I'd like to come to your town and spend some time with you.  If you'd like me to come, please contact me so we can work it out and get it scheduled. 

Prayer:  Lord, allow us to remember the sacrifice you made in Jesus.  Remind us to show love and kindness to one another and to ourselves.  Help us to find peace in your will and joy in you.  Strengthen us to be serious in our commitments to you and to ourselves.  Lord, cover us as we endeavor to make a new start and a new day.  Bless us to keep you in the forefront of all we do.  In Jesus name, Amen!

*most activities are free to Back to Eden members or very reasonably priced.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash & Squash/Peach Smoothie recipe

Roasted Butternut Squash
(dedicated to Jennifer - I remember!!)

1lb Butternut Squash (its really hard to peel and cut so many of the supermkts have it already cut up for you.  Take the easy route. Its worth it.
1TBSP Pumpkin Pie spice (allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg)
1/4 tsp Lite Salt (optional)
Pam butter flavored cooking spray
1pkt splenda (optional - you really don't need any)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a tin pan with Pam and arrange squash in the pan.  Sprinkle with seasonings.  Spray with Pam.  Bake 45 mins to 1 hour, until tender. 

Exchanges:  1/2 cup Carb A

Enjoy as a side with chicken or pork. 

Leftover butternut squash meshes flavorfully with frozen peaches in the blender for a delicious smoothie that is reminiscent of peach ice cream, if soft frozen with a 1/8tsp vanilla and a pkt of splenda.

do you see what I see?

She held on to hope with every fiber of her being.  She reached out, feeling her arms were too short to reach God.  'How long', she cried, 'how long'!!  In her all her ________-something years, she's never felt whole, loved, complete.  She tried to get your attention, but you were busy.  She tried to do it on her own, but she was too broken.  She continued to travail and wail.  Then one day she put on a face.  A face so stern, so stoic, so somber.  A mask that no one could see past.  A look of indignation or aloofness.  You would see her and say, 'that's surely someone who wants to be alone'.  There is no 'welcome' in her visage.  'Some people just want to be left alone', you'd hear people say.  She'd continue to walk alone and her stoic expression soon would turn angry.  Eventually, all the self-loathing that she's internalized would be loosed on the people that she first reached out to.  She is angry - devalued - empty - broken.

Brokenness begins to give way to moments of despair.  Unable to reconcile herself to these overwhelming feelings of emptiness, lack of value, lack of worth, she almost allowed herself to slip away into the darkness.  She almost let go...

Thankfully, you realize, even though she needs finally understand - she needs YOU to get to HIM.

Matthew 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

This season especially magnifies emptiness in some of our brothers and sisters.  I'm thankful for peace and joy and righteousness in the Holy Ghost but it has not always been so.  We have to help each other to be strong and feel loved. 
So often you hear the phrase 'comfort food' like the rich holiday fare we indulge in around this time of year.  But for some, overindulgence has become the 'coping' mechanism that they have used to keep from 'feeling'.  Instead of sharing 'food' with one another this year, let's go one better, share of 'yourself'. Be a listening ear, a prayer partner, a shoulder to lean on.  Go for a walk in the cool brisk air with a sister who might be sitting alone at lunch.  Or if outside is not your thing in the cold, mall-walking is the answer.  Just focus on one another and be God's hand extended.
Recipe:  Oven roasted butternut squash

This week's event:
Saturday 9am - Pray in/Weigh in
Fresh juice and smoothie's provided after prayer & weigh in
301 W. 24th Street, 28216

Daily prayer @ 6am Monday thru Friday
712-432-0232 passcode 813766#
We meet at 6am for about 30 mins.  Please feel free to join in to pray or just listen in.  Prayer changes things and where 2 or more are gathered He is in the midst of us.  Feel free to utilize & share this number at any point throughout the day to organize your own prayer group.  The more the better!

Prayer:  Lord, continue to make us an instrument of your peace.  As you help us to make sound decisions regarding our lives and our health, remind us that our spiritual health also requires nurturing.  We trust you Lord with all our cares and cast them on you.  Help us to pull down strongholds and cast down vain imaginations.  Remind us that we can trust you.  Remind us that You are the source of our strength and the strength of our life.  Keep us covered God.  REBUILD us.  In Jesus Name, Amen.

Special prayer:  Thank you Lord for holding back the hand of the fowler.  Thank you that my sister is still in the land of the living.  Help me Lord to be instrumental in her REBUILDING.  Show her her value.  Restore you joy.  Amen.

If you know anyone who is interested in Back to Eden:  Eat to Lose - A Christian Approach to Weight Loss please send them to this link:  Back to Eden.  I look forward to connecting with your friends and family to help them to acheive their goals.  If your group is interested in a personal presentation please contact me directly at

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Turkey Casserole (no dairy)

Recipe: Ground Turkey Casserole

1lb browned ground turkey
10oz pkg frozen onion/pepper stir fry
1tsp garlic chopped
10 oz pkg soy mozzarella cheese (Trader Joe's)
1lb rice noodles (Trader Joe's - rotini or macaroni) (prepared & rinsed)
1TBSP italian seasoning (dried oregano, basil blend)
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp Morton Lite Salt
2 pkgs of Splenda
10 oz no sodium diced tomatoes (Trader Joe's)
Pam cooking spray
In a heavy bottom skillet, sprayed with Pam over medium heat, brown the onions, peppers and garlic. Add the turkey and cook until browned. Add the salt, splenda, sage, italian seasonings. Stir well. Add the diced tomatoes and allow to cook for about 10 minutes.
Transfer mixture to a tin pan or other oven pan and mix together ground turkey sauce with the noodles. Mix in the soy cheese mixture (reserve some for the top). Cover the top with the soy cheese and bake for about 15 mins at 350 degrees (all foods are already cooked, you are just melting the cheese and letting the flavor's meld). Allow it to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Portions - 8oz (1 cup). Exchange - Carb B, Veggie A, Protein B. Add a salad on the side for a meal the whole family will enjoy or separate into servings and freeze for future meals.

The old you or the new you?

In all my juicing, I have started juicing apples.  I took some apple juice and placed it in a glass jar and decided I'd let it ferment and make some vinegar.  I filled it up and put the top on it and placed in under the sink.  A couple of days later I heard a 'BOOM'!  An apple-y vinegary smell along with lots of broken glass was everywhere.  As the juice had changed in the glass it expanded and blew up.  The glass did not have the ability to expand so it gave way and was shattered.  Had I placed the juice in a plastic container it would not have had the same reaction.  It would have had room to grow and the plastic would have been able to accomodate it.

Rigidity and inflexibility in ourselves have the same reaction.  We will have stressors in our lives but we can either expand and contract to the situation or we can be rigid and combust.  Trusting God is part of the expansion.  Giving way to the fact that even though these situations are unfamiliar and uncomfortable to us, they are all part of the plan for the work that God is creating in us. 

As we prepare our hearts and minds for the season of Christ's immaculate birth, some may find themselves getting caught up in the fan-fare, the shopping, the presents, the food.   For others the loneliness, emptiness, loss of loved ones, memories of times past may even become overwhelming.  In all of it, we have to remember the real reason.  Place our focus on Christ and be flexible.  The hustle and bustle can be overwhelming.  We must allow ourselves time to sit and listen to God's voice and allow Him to create in us a perfect work. 

Mark 2:21 "No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If they do, the new piece will pull away from the old, making the tear worse. 22 And people do not pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins."

Charlotte Weekend Events
Friday:  Zumba-THON
McCrory YMCA 7pm to 9pm
Come and dance off that Turkey!!

Saturday:  Walk it OUT!!
RCM 301 W. 24th Street
8:30 am - 9:30 am
Free:  Let's move something!

Recipe: Ground Turkey Casserole

Muriel S.- CA:  Down 7lbs in her first week!  Go girl!!  You got this.  Stay with it!!

Prayer:  Lord, help us to keep our minds stayed on you.  In the midst of every situation, allow us to gain strength from your presence trusting and believing that you desire our good success.  Show us how to do all that is within our own power and our own strength and to relinquish to you those things beyond our control.  Cover each and every Eden Citizen with your grace which is sufficient.  Release your healings and your deliverance over us from generational curses Lord.  Let the blood of Christ wash us white as snow.  Bless us with peace that surpasses all understanding. 

In Jesus' precious name.  Amen. 

Special note:  Its already ALRIGHT!