Holly Furtick

Monday Morning (or Afternoon) Commentary

Africa

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving holiday weekend.  We did. Since my husband did all the work for his message in Africa, we got to be a normal family this weekend.  We watched football on Saturday, went on a date, and then we got to go church together (in separate cars of course!) and for only one service on Sunday! 

The message was incredible.  Our video crew at Elevation could go up against any crew any day!  The footage they captured and then edited together was stellar!  It felt almost as if I had made the trip to Africa myself (minus the 2 full days of flying and coming home with a dusty suitcase)!

My favorite part of the message was when my husband talked about our response to what we have seen.  He said we can respond out of greed, out of guilt or out of generosity.  God has blessed us and I don't need to sit around and feel guilty that I was born in America.  I simply need to respond with generosity from the blessing God has given me.

And what better place to give my money than to the work of God at Elevation Church?  I know that my money will be spent wisely and given generously to those in need in Charlotte and across the world in Africa.

You can actually catch the entire service all this week, December 1-4 at 12 pm, 6 pm, and 8pm at Elevationchurchlive.com or you can watch the just the message here at our archives (Part 2 of Kingdom Come).

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Thankful

As I sit here and type, I can smell all the casserole cooking.  Yum.  I am trying desperately not to munch so that I can be super hungry when we sit down to eat.  I love Thanksgiving.  What other American holiday is purely based around eating?  I read somewhere that the average American will consume 3500 calories in one meal. 

Alright, 10 things I am thankful for…

  1. I am thankful that I don't have a baby this Thanksgiving.  It feels really free for the first time in four years.
  2. That I like my in-laws.
  3. The pineapple casserole that I am about to eat. (check my recipe category)
  4. My iPhone (although it has let me down with no service here in Moncks Corner.  I guess the iPhone has not come yet to Moncks Corner)
  5. My church.  The greatest church on the planet.
  6. How funny my kids are right now.  I love preschoolers.
  7. That my husband is my best friend.
  8. The healthy of my family.
  9. The red velvet cake I am about to eat. (check my recipe category)
  10. The privilege of being born in the United States.

How about you?  What are you thankful for?

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Would you rather?

As I type, we are preparing to leave town.  We plan to spend Thanksgiving with my husband's parents.  We never actually do the same thing each year.  Sometimes here, sometimes there, sometimes at my mom's.  There are definite positives and negatives to both.

If you host, you assume the responsibility of the meal and the clean up (or at least the organization of it).  If you travel, you have to pack up your whole family and drive.  Our kids aren't the greatest travelers although they are getting much better (they were down right terrible as babies.)  Total rabbit trail, but I remember Elijah's first Thanksgiving, he cried the ENTIRE trip home from Charleston.  3 1/2 grueling hours.  Back then we called our car the torture chamber (torture for us, that is, not the baby).

Christmas we will host since we won't be able to get out of town.  It will be great.

So this thanksgiving, we hit the road as soon as Graham wakes up from his nap.  We have already made a trip to blockbuster so I am armed and ready.  It will be a short trip but the boys are totally excited about going to their grandparents house.

Enough rambling.  I started this post calling it a would you rather, but honestly, I like both.  So which would you rather or maybe, which are you doing this weekend?  Let me hear from you.  I'll be counting on you to provide me some road entertainment thanks to the iPhone.

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A little family fun

Before my husband left for Africa, we took our kids to the Lazy 5 Ranch.  If you live in the area and you’ve never been, its quite the experience.  You go on a safari driving your own car.  We let the kids sit in the front, roll down the windows and feed all the animals, of course, everything is better with music so we have that too.  I will share more photos later.  For now, enjoy this short clip of our family having a great time…

PS. I promise to blog every day this week to provide you with a bit of entertainment over the holiday week.  Keep checking back!

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Monday Morning Commentary

Kingdomcome

Yesterday we kicked off our new series, Kingdom Come, by announcing some big news… we're building a new campus in the Blakeney area of Charlotte.

My husband's message (as always) was inspiring.  He talked about what a great investment giving your money to Elevation Church is and I couldn't agree more.  In a world where seemingly Godly organizations go sour, and where people steal or misuse money given to God's kingdom, its difficult to be generous and give.

Elevation has one of the most unique outreach strategies I've seen.  Rather than start up our own ministries to the community, we have decided to partner with agencies that are getting it done all over our city.  Our goal is that if Elevation Church died, the city of Charlotte would weep.  We partner with agencies that give aid to single mothers and homeless people, people with AIDS and children in need.

Not only are we reaching out to help the physical needs in our community, we are reaching people's spiritual needs as well.  Our church exists so that people far from God will be filled with life in Christ and we are doing just that.

Its an amazing thing to be a part of and to support financially.  Our family is stretching ourselves this Christmas season to give and give big to the Kingdom of God through the work of Elevation and it is exciting.

You can listen to the message here later today (Part 1 of Kingdom Come).

You can also read more about our community outreach partners here.

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Dinner and a movie

November 162 

We are celebrating the return of my husband!!  Yeah!  Welcome home team Africa!

Last week I decided to change it up one night.  We had dinner and a movie.  I brought the kid's table into the living room.  They ate grilled cheese sandwiches and yogurt with granola while they watched Charlie Brown.  They had a great time!

 

Also, check out what I have been writing over at my husband's blog… 

Monday- Marriage and Family
Tuesday- Weekend Schedule
Wednesday- Pastor Steven's Personality

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Mess

Two Oreos caused all this mess.

November 144

Please ignore the snot and admire the curls.

November 147 

I love you Graham.  I am glad Oreos bring you such joy.

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Monday Morning Commentary

Thejoygenome

We concluded our series this week with an interview my husband and I did with my mom.  Many of you may not know that my younger sister, Joy, is mentally handicap.  We decided that the best way to wrap up our series would be to bring a living example of a family who has lived life with Joy (literally) despite a very difficult situation.

My mom and dad are the perfect example of a couple who embraced a difficulty and accepted God's plan for their family, even though it was not something they would have chosen.  Many years ago, they decided they would not become bitter because they were given a handicap child, but that to the best of their ablilty, they would accept the responsiblity given to them from the Lord.

The interview is great.  My favorite nugget from my mom: Pain is inevitable, misery is optional.

You can watch the interview here (Part 4, The Joy Genome) later today.

Also, I am double blogging this week .  I have hijacked my husband's blog this week as he is recovering from jet lag.  I am answering questions about ministry, marraige, burn out and more.  (If the week gets too hectic, I may do the same post here and there, I'm sure you understand?) 

Today I am talking about marraige and ministry.  You can check it out here.

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Recipe: Black bean soup

This black bean soup is one of my very favorite recipes.  If you like black bean soup, I promise you will love this one!!  There are two key ingredients that you cannot leave out: coconut milk and chorizo sausage.  Coconut milk you can buy in a can usually in the international section of the grocery store.  Chorizo sausage is a Mexican sausage that is sometimes hard to find, but do not substitute for Italian sausage.  It won's taste right.  I usually have to go in a Food Lion to find it.  Sometimes Walmart has it too.  its located in the refridgerated section, sometimes with the breakfast sausages (sometimes I have to ask the butcher to help me find it).  Ok,here goes…

Ingredients:
8 oz (give or take) Chorizo sausage
2 (20oz) cans of black beans
1 (20oz) can of refried black beans (Trader Joes my favorite)
1/3 c coconut milk
1 can chicken broth
1/2 a lime
3-4 cloves of garlic (pressed)
1/2 c white wine

Directions:
Brown the sausage in the bottom of your soup pot.  The sausage is kinda red in color so its hard to know when its done.  It should not look so mushy, but more separated, like really fine ground beef.  Drain grease if its really greasy.

Combine all the rest of the ingredients except the coconut milk.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.  Add the coconut milk, simmer 10 more minutes.

Serve with a dollup of sour cream and top with chopped green onions or jalepenos if it you want extra spice.

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You asked again

Next week I am hijacking my husband's blog and I need your help.

What would you like to hear about?  Ask me anything.  Well, almost anything.

Leave your comments on this post and I will try to answer them next week over at www.stevenfurtick.com.

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