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“We know that when it comes time for rendering an account of our lives, we will be blamed or praised not for what the television evangelist has done, not for what the bishop has done, not for what the pastor has done (unless we are the pastor)-we will be praised according to whether or not we have accepted the invitation to believe the message.”

Brennan Manning from Souvenirs of Solitude 

The message was loud and clear the day my Sweet Man collapsed on the ground before me. You can read about that here and here.

Summer days, slow and sultry, came with a new lease on life. Open heart surgery, valve replacement, cardio rehab, and a visit with the nutritionist.

To grab hold of this new lease and hold it tight, changes had to be made.

Before I can go any deeper I have to tell you, a servant I am not. I would laughingly tell you, my spiritual gift is the gift of gab. I prefer to call it what it is, the gift of encouragement. My encouragement happens to come with many words. (haha)

I took the list from the nutritionist, studied it as if our very lives depended upon it. His did.

And y’all, I love my man. In all the love and longing to live out many, many more days together I quickly realized, I needed to make changes.

The first change had to be made in my own heart. I needed a servant’s heart. Serving, a message I will quickly proclaim, yet struggle to live, especially in the kitchen.

This man has held me up, bathed me, dressed me, lifted me from the bed on days strength alluded. Patiently pushed me through the aisles of Target. It was now my turn to serve.

He had his part to do and I had mine. Serving my husband. Serving him low sodium, heart healthy meals.

On a comedic side not: He is limited to two thousand milligrams of sodium a day. To plug the holes in Dysautonomia, I take in somewhere around eight to ten grams of sodium a day. What a challenge!

Serving my husband with healthy meals has taken planning, preparation, education, several epic fails, a filled pantry, and many resources.

The hidden gift in serving surprises when I overhear my Sweet Man telling others he could not have done this without me. Can I just tell you, it’s better than flowers and dark chocolate when I overhear him say those words? It makes my selfish heart long to serve him more. To serve him well.

I am learning serving well requires a heart that loves big.

“Sacrifice isn’t so much about losing what you love, but giving your love on to whom you love more. When you sacrifice for what you love, you gain more of what you love.

Love is a risk-that’s never a risk.” Ann Voskamp from The Broken Way

I am learning the more I serve, the more I love. The closer I become to Jesus.

Jesus, the Savior, who bends low and washes feet.

***

We’ve been told oats are loaded with heart healthy benefits. My Sweet Man will not touch an oat! However, I have found several tasty ways to sneak them into his diet. These are now two of his favorite things!

Logan Wolfram’s, Author of Curious Faith, a must read by the way. Read Curious Faith while Logan’s Blueberry Baked Oatmeal bakes in the oven.

It is scrumptious and has become one of our favorite winter comfort foods! 

I have also found many delicious and healthy recipes from Baker by Nature. The Healthy Bakery Style Chocolate Chip Muffins are one of our many favorites from Ashley at Baker by Nature.  Be sure to check out her site and follow her on Instagram for more tasty recipes! 

“We exist to be Little Christs.”

Ann Voskamp from The Broken Way

The message; bending low, serving others. Serving well.


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