Malankara World Journal - Christian Spirituality from an Orthodox Perspective
Malankara World Journal
Theme: Mortal Sins
Volume 6 No. 356 July 1, 2016

IV. General Weekly Features

Recipe: Loaded Potato Salad

Get a load of this: sour cream, bacon, shredded cheddar, green onions and more come together to give you all the richness of restaurant potato skins at your next picnic.
- Monique Boulanger, Greenwood, Nova Scotia


2 pounds red potatoes, quartered
1/2 pound bacon strips, chopped
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup creamy Caesar salad dressing
1/4 cup ranch salad dressing
3 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 green onions, chopped
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Coarsely ground pepper, optional


Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook 15-20 minutes or until tender.

Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat, until crisp. Remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 3 tablespoons drippings.

Drain potatoes and place in a large bowl. Add bacon and reserved drippings; toss to coat. Refrigerate until chilled.

Whisk the mayonnaise, dressings, sour cream and mustard in a small bowl. Pour over potato mixture; toss to coat. Stir in onions and cheese. Sprinkle with pepper if desired.

Yield: 8 servings.

Originally published in Simple & Delicious April/May 2013, p55
Source: Taste of Home

12 Things Every Dad Should Say to His Kids

by Debbie McDaniel

Memories with Dad live long and strong. Playing ball in the yard. Twirling in his arms. Wrestling in the living room. Fishing in the pond. Shooting hoops in the driveway. Dancing. Laughing. Racing. Working. Building. Biking. Living.

Dads. One of the most important relationships in this life, because it wields such power to shape and influence what we believe about who God is. A loving father can point us directly to the love of God our Heavenly Father, so clearly and directly.

And in the same way, a father who seems distant, angry, hard to please, or vacant, may unfortunately invite some difficult feelings in how we view God and his care for us. Many have lost fathers too early in life – due to death, divorce, or abandonment. Others still wrestle through hurtful memories of abuse and fear of the very one who was supposed to protect them.

No matter what our experiences have been growing up, or where we find ourselves now, God still reigns supreme over all. He cares. He loves. He is near. He is trustworthy. And his heart for you as your Daddy shines through every step of life. He is powerful enough to help you navigate through the most difficult of memories and experiences, sheltering, embracing you in it all. And giving you freedom, blessing to grow, and healing to move forward. We can take every difficult experience and allow God to use it for good, by helping us to become the best parents possible for our own children. Pain is never wasted when God is Supreme over our lives. Where experiences have harmed us, even if unintentional, even if seemingly unfair, God can still use it for his purposes, to bring good through it all.

If you are blessed to be a Dad, you've been given a priceless gift in this life. The gift of pointing your children to him. The gift of leading. The gift of loving. Your actions matter, how you choose to live makes a difference in the lives of all you know.

We see from research through the years, that kids generally do better socially, academically, and emotionally, when dads are actively involved and participating in their lives. But it's not just the fact that fathers are physically present that matters, it's how they are present. Kids thrive most when dads recognize the need to provide a warm, understanding relationship under which their children can share life, learn, and grow.

Words matter. Our kids need to hear them. They thrive under encouraging, supporting, heart-felt words. And young children grow up into adults and yet they still need to hear, loving words from a father's voice. Wisdom from a daddy's heart, that lives on long in the lives of others.

Here are 12 things every dad should say to his kids, though there's many more:

1. I love you. Period. No matter what. Unconditionally. And nothing will ever change that.

2. I believe in you. You can do it. Anything is possible. You are a winner.

3. Love God. Love your spouse.

4. I am with you. And even when you can't see me, you can be assured I'm thinking of you.

5. I am proud of you. You are beautiful. You are amazing. You have great purpose in this world.

6. Respect yourself. Respect others. Respect your Mom.

7. Your character is always more significant than your reputation. Never forget who you are and that you first belong to God. Who you are in secret is just as important as who you are in public, because God sees both.

8. I am sorry. Would you please forgive me? I forgive you.

9. I am praying for you. You have my blessing in all that God calls you to do in this life.

10. Work hard. Save some. Spend a little. Give a lot.

11. Don't take yourself too seriously. Laugh. Have fun in life. Every day is an adventure.

12. Be brave. Be strong. But always remember that it's OK to be afraid. And it's OK to cry.

Whether or not you ever heard these words from you own Dad is not the end of the story. Because God is both the beginning and the end of your story, and He speaks love over you today.

Dads, you are powerful in the lives of your kids. You are hero status. You are a solid foundation. You hold the potential for great influence in the generations to come.

Live wisely. Live well. Live strong. Live with grace. Your Father God is with you, always.

"Be on your guard, stand firm in the faith, be men of courage, be strong. Do everything in love"
(1 Corinthians 16:13-14).

"…but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord"
 (Joshua 24:15).

"He who fears the LORD has a secure fortress, and for his children it will be a refuge"
(Proverbs 14:26).

About The Author:

Debbie McDaniel is a pastor's wife, mom to three amazing kids and a few too many pets, dramatist and writer. She has a heart to communicate God's hope though the everyday moments of life - the good, the bad, the ugly, and the ones that take your breath away.

The Value of Salt
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
- Colossians 4:6

At the end of His beatitudes, Jesus stated that His followers were to be salt and light in the world. Salt was highly valued in the ancient world for four special qualities:

A. Its purity

Glistening white and coming from the sun and the sea, it was the most primitive of all offerings to the gods. If we are to be salt, we must be an example of purity. In the world, efforts to lower standards of honesty, diligence in work, conscientiousness and morality are going on all the time. The Christian must be the person who holds aloft the standard for purity of speech, conduct and thought. Words cannot be effective unless backed up by pure living.

B. It was inexpensive but precious

Christians may seem few, insignificant and of no consequence to society. In 1 Corinthians 1:26-31, Paul addressed the early church with the concept that though few in numbers, lowly and unimportant, Christians are called to exercise godly influence over the whole of society.

C. As a preservative to keep meat from going bad

Salt rubbed into meat slowed the rotting process. Christians whose lives exhibit 'blessedness' will have a preserving impact upon a society that, if left to itself, will rot and deteriorate. In Judges 9:45, Abimelech, after defeating the city of Shechem destroyed it and scattered salt all over it. Spiritually, this is what the Christian does when he takes his stand for God in society. He makes that society, be it his friends in school, his fellow students at college, his co-workers, or those with whom he plays sports, less fertile soil for other ungodly influences. We too can have a preserving witness, by being involved with this world gone wrong, if we will pay the price.

D. To season food

Salt brings out the distinctive flavor of food. The increase of God's people should increase the flavor of life in many different ways. By His very presence, Jesus raised the spirits of people. There was a quality about His life that could not be explained in natural terms. As our verse for today says, our speech especially should be seasoned with salt. In this context Paul also talks about not grieving the Holy Spirit. Since speech is linked to a person's spiritual state and has tremendous potential for building up or tearing down (James3:3-12), the constant reminder is to watch not only what is allowed to come forth but how it comes.

By our presence, participation and penetration of society, in our daily contacts in our neighborhood and community, we are to bring the flavor of Christ to an unbelieving world.

RESPONSE: Today I will check my conversation and be sure I season it with the salt of purity.

PRAYER: Lord, forgive me when I grieve Your Holy Spirit by what I say and how I say it.

Source: Standing Strong Through the Storm
© 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission

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