Saturday, December 10, 2011

"Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, 'Be holy, for I am holy'".  I Peter 1:13-16 NKJV

You know as the years go by many things get easier and easier to change and improve upon with our walk with the Lord.  However, there are some things I still seem to struggle with.  I remind myself daily that I can live a holy life, I just have to get myself out of the way first.  I can remember a time when I would buy anything I wanted whenever I wanted and all I had to do was just "charge it".  It seemed so easy to ignore the fact that I would pay more for it with all of the interest attached.  Over the years, my husband & I have been very convicted about these issues.  Before we ever met, we both had experience using several store credit cards.  When we were married we still thought we needed to hang on to an emergency credit card, but that was still bondage to us.  Now, years later and much to the wiser, we do not use regular credit cards rather we maintain two cards that are backed by our own security deposit.  They report to the credit bureaus and we build our credit report based on plannned spending.  We stick to one major rule, if we do not have it we do not spend it;  It has been so liberating.  Also, believe it or not, there are still mom and pop stores out there that will let you buy with 90 days same as cash or 12 months same as cash.  The last several vehicles we purchased, we just buckled down and saved our money the old fashioned way and paid cash for them.
"The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender." Proverbs 22:7
This is another reason I am so motivated to do and make many things myself.  After this Christmas season, while many are opening up and stressing over credit card statements, we will not owe anyone anything for our gift-giving.  The Christmas season is for giving of the heart, not necessarily the pocket-book.  It does not bring joy to the Lord's heart to see us give when we are so burdened down to do so;  I think it actually grieves Him.  This season, if you do not already do it, try to give something that takes a portion of your loving heart and puts less stress on the bank.  When things are made with love, they are more revered anyway.  If they are not, then the recipient is too materialistic and in need of a bit of humility. 
Today I worked with my lip balm.  I had found a recipe for homemade lip balm, but because it was mostly coconut oil, I could not carry it on my person, because it would melt.  The more I read, I found that I needed some beeswax for better hardening.  I ordered some on Ebay, and I fixed my lip balm this morning. 

I cleaned out some of my used chapstick containers with a cotton swab.  Alcohol will clean off any old germs you do not want mixed in the balm.   I shaved off some fresh beeswax and added to my balm mixture.  Then, I heated the cup in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time and stirred in between cycles until the mixture melted thoroughly (about 2 minutes total).  Then I used my pipette to fill my containers and let them sit upright until hardened.  One tip that I've read about suggests using a little scrape of your favorite lipstick to give it a bit of color.  This is the only additive that is not all natural. 
Here are a few sites with their recipes for homemade lip balm:

I hope you try some homemade projects this Christmas season and share them with love.  God Bless.

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