Thursday, 28 November 2013

The Littlest Firefighter

A TRUE story
This touching TRUE story of a little boy's last wish is taken from the book Chicken Soup for the Soul.

The 26-year-old mother stared down at her son who was dying of terminal leukemia. Although her heart was filled with sadness, she also had a strong feeling of determination. Like any parent she wanted her son to grow up and fulfill all his dreams. Now that was no longer possible. The leukemia would see to that.
But she still wanted her son's dreams to come true. She took her son's hand and asked, "Bopsy, did you ever think about what you wanted to be once you grew up? Did you ever dream and wish what you would do with your life?"
"Mommy, I always wanted to be a fireman when I grew up." Mom smiled back and said, "Let's see if we can make your wish come true."

Later that day she went to her local fire department in Phoenix, Arizona, where she met Fireman Bob, who had a heart as big as Phoenix. She explained her son's final wish and asked if it might be possible to give her six-year-old son a ride around the block on a fire engine.

Fireman Bob said, "Look, we can do better than that. If you'll have your son ready at seven o'clock Wednesday morning, we'll make him an honorary fireman for the whole day. He can come down to the fire station, eat with us, go out on all the fire calls, the whole nine yards! "And if you'll give us his sizes, we'll get a real fire uniform for him, with a real fire hat -- not a toy one -- with the emblem of the Phoenix Fire Department on it, a yellow slicker like we wear and rubber boots. They're all manufactured right here in Phoenix, so we can get them fast."

Three days later Fireman Bob picked up Bopsy, dressed him in his fire uniform and escorted him from his hospital bed to the waiting hook and ladder truck. Bopsy got to sit on the back of the truck and help steer it back to the fire station. He was in heaven.
There were three fire calls in Phoenix that day and Bopsy got to go out on all three calls. He rode in the different fire engines, the paramedic's van, and even the fire chief's car. He was also videotaped for the local news program.

Having his dream come true, with all the love and attention that was lavished upon him, so deeply touched Bopsy that he lived three months longer than any doctor thought possible.
One night all of his vital signs began to drop dramatically and the head nurse, who believed in the hospice concept that no one should die alone, began to call the family members to the hospital. Then she remembered the day Bopsy had spent as a fireman, so she called the Fire Chief and asked if it would be possible to send a fireman in uniform to the hospital to be with Bopsy as he made his transition.

The chief replied, "We can do better than that. We'll be there in five minutes. Will you please do me a favor? When you hear the sirens screaming and see the lights flashing, will you announce over the PA system that there is not a fire? It's just the fire department coming to see one of its finest members one more time. And will you open the window to his room?"

About five minutes later a hook and ladder truck arrived at the hospital, extended its ladder up to Bopsy's third floor open window and five firefighters climbed up the ladder into Bopsy's room. With his mother's permission, they hugged him and held him and told him how much they loved him. With his dying breath, Bopsy looked up at the fire chief and said, "Chief, am I really a fireman now?" "Yes, Bopsy, you are a fireman now," the chief said. With those words, Bopsy smiled and closed his eyes one last time. He passed away later that evening.

For more on the background of this amazing true story: - Make-A-Wish website on Bopsy

The language of God: LIGHTNING

Today we are looking at lightning. A keyword search for the word lightning yields about 55 results. Here are a few:

Psalm 18:14 - He shot his arrows and scattered [the enemies], great bolts of lightning and routed them.
2 Samuel 22:13 - Out of the brightness of his presence bolts of lightning blazed forth.
Job 36:32 - He fills his hands with lightning and commands it to strike its mark.
Job 37:3 - He unleashes his lightning beneath the whole heaven and sends it to the ends of the earth.
Daniel 10:6 - His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.
Matthew 24:27 - For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
Matthew 28:3 - His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow
Revelation 8:5 - Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.

It is clear that lightning is part of God's vocabulary. He looks like lightning, He causes lightning, and He hurls lightning. He uses it to vanquish enemies, to inspire awe, and to announce His coming.

There's a story this week of a tragedy atop a mountain in North Carolina. A man and woman in love were hiking. When they got to the top of the mountain, they stopped to admire the view. Though cloudy and a bit thundery, it was gorgeous nonetheless. Unbeknown to the woman, the man had a ring in his pocket and was going to propose. Very much in love, he watched her as she took in her surroundings. Turning to him, she said, "Isn't it beautiful?"

Those were the last words she spoke.

Waking up a few minutes later on his back, the soles of his feet smoking, he saw his beloved laying on the ground a few feet away. She was dead. A lightning bolt had struck them both and though the man performed CPR for many minutes, she could not be revived. In despair, he put the ring on his beloved's finger and said his goodbyes.

Did this incident have a direct Divine Cause? Did God hurl a lightning bolt to earth and cause this girl's death? Let's look to the bible for that answer.

In this day and "tolerant" age, bible students and Christians in general like to claim that God is all-loving and would never hurt a flea. This claim is usually preceded by the claim that there is no hell and a loving God would never send any of His children there. Aside from the fact that hell exists to hold all unforgiven sinners of all eternity and for all eternity, and that God IS loving, let's take a look at the uncomfortable fact of some of His direct interventions.

"Then Judah took a wife for Er his firstborn, and her name was Tamar. But Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the sight of the LORD, and the LORD killed him. (Genesis 38:6)."

Yes, that's my reaction, too. How about this, just a few verses later: "The next brother in law to marry Tamar also was wicked, and four verses later, we see again, "And the thing which he did displeased the LORD; therefore He killed him also." In 2 Samuel 6:7, Uzzah touched the Holy ark of God, and "Then the anger of the LORD was aroused against Uzzah, and God struck him there for his error; and he died there by the ark of God." The bible does not record exactly how these were killed, but in in 2 Samuel God routed whole armies using thunder, rain, and lightning.

It is clear that in God's inestimable perfection, He sees fit to directly cause the death of one or more people at a time. It seems harsh, but it speaks more to man's disobedience. The people were told how to carry the Ark, which was the visible throne of God and contains the presence of God between the angels' wings (Lev. 16:2). It speaks to God's holiness. The New Testament incident of Ananias and Sapphirais proof that it isn't "just the Old testament God" who takes things so very seriously. The pair lied directly to the Holy Spirit and were killed because of it and for a lesson in how hypocrisy infiltrating the church from the inside can cause tremendous damage.

So do I think that the girl on the mountain was directly killed by God? I don't purport to know the mind of God but I do know in His consistency that He tells us beforehand of His expectations. In the most severe abridgment of his expectations, precepts, laws, or commands, He directly intervenes.

In the unfortunate case of the girl who died, I think the truism that "lightning seeks the ground" is brought to bear here, rather than conclude whole-heartedly that it was any direct smiting or was a sign in particular. Whatever the case of it may be, we can learn from what happened to her.

Your death could come at any moment, and at that moment, it will be too late to decide for Jesus. Your lack of decision will have been the decision. As the end of the age draws near, now every time I hear of a death, I can't help but wonder if that person was saved or not. As the girl on the mountain admired the beauty of creation, did she know her creator? More importantly, did she know her Savior? Do you?

Lightning is in the news today in the mid-section of the nation. TheKing of Kings statue located at Solid Rock Church in Monroe, Ohio was struck by lightning and burned to the ground. The statue is 62 feet high, presents only Jesus's torso with arms upraised, causing the aptness of the nickname "Touchdown Jesus" to be all too ruefully honest. The statue is in a baptismal pool and at night, is lit from underneath from multi-colored lights. It is gaudy and not to my liking, and not to many of the locals' either: 75% of those polled said it was in bad taste and reflected poorly on the city of Monroe.

Jesus statue struck by lightning, burns to the ground

 "Monroe firefighters said the lightning strike set the statue on fire around 11:15 p.m. Monday. Firefighters said at their tallest, the flames reached 100 feet. The sculpture, which was 62 feet tall, showed Jesus from the torso up and was nicknamed Touchdown Jesus by some because of the way his arms were raised. Church members said the lightning strike and destructive fire stunned them, many thought it was a sign they need to pay attention to. Kevin Jones said, "I'm thinking it's a sign from Jesus that we need to learn something, as Christians, as a whole, we're not doing something right." Ashley Morgan said, "It scares me, it really does, I think about what that symbolizes, to me that's a sign and not a good one." The steeple wasn't touched. Nor was the cell phone tower next door.

The statue reminded me of the Buddy Jesus from the movie Dogma, a sarcastic and mocking look at the 'loopholes' in Catholicism, and the alleged farcical nature of religion in general. Avowed atheist George Carlin is the actor playing a Bishop who bemoans the depressing-ness of the crucifix image, and creates a new campaign, "Catholicism Wow!" with a 'friendlier' Jesus as a newly branded image of the Deity.

The two images, Buddy Jesus and Touchdown Jesus are similar in nature, though I am sure they were not intended to be, at least not on the part of Solid Rock Church. In any case, "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap." (Gal 6:7)

Some may say that the lightning struck because the Touchdown Jesus was an idol. But the definition of idol is "worship of any cult image, idea, or object, as opposed to the worship of a monotheistic God. It is considered a major sin in the Abrahamic religions. Which images, ideas, and objects, constitute idolatry, and which constitute reasonable worship, is a matter of contention..." Were they engaging in reasonable worship? It is matter of opinion. Solid Rock Church's website states that they serve and worship a resurrected Jesus from a biblical standpoint, so the statue, gaudy as it is, may or may not be considered an idol (at least on the surface with the definition).

We look to the bible for descriptions of and uses of lightning in God's work. That it is part of His vocabulary is fact. That individual incidences, at least in the past, of God smiting individuals has occurred is also a fact. However, we can never be sure of particular incidences and should remain cautious in ascribing Divine hands at work for any given circumstance. That the girl's sudden death atop the mountain moves us to consider our own eternal destination in the face of the fleetingness of life is a good thing. That the woman in the article at Solid Rock Church wonders if this is a sign from God and if she or the church should change their ways is also a good thing. Taking stock of your standing with God is never a pointless exercise.

I advise doing a keyword search of an online bible to see how and where lightning is used for a sign to the people. I use biblecc, adbiblegateway. We know that in the very near future, Revelation 8:5says that lighting will occur as a direct order from God: "Then the angel took the censer and filled it with the fire of the altar, and threw it to the earth; and there followed peals of thunder and sounds and flashes of lightning and an earthquake." And also in Revelation 11:19 - "And the temple of God which is in heaven was opened; and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple, and there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm." And again in Revelation 4:5 - "[The Throne and Worship of the Creator ] Out from the throne come flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder. And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God;"
Lightning is part of God's vocabulary and He will be speaking it very soon.
 Are you listening?

Good Morning and Happy Thanksgiving!

The last piece of apple pie is gone;
How did it disappear?
The bowl of delicious stuffing
Has also vanished, I fear.

It happens each Thanksgiving,
When leftover goodies flee,
And each of us knows the responsible one
Couldn't be you or me.

The only way it could happen
Is readily diagnosed;
It must be the crafty, incredibly sneaky,
Still hungry Thanksgiving ghost.
By Karl Fuchs

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Quotes on Work...

These inspirational quotes on work would uplift you and provide insightful understanding of the role of work in defining our lives...

What Is Work?
“Nothing is really work unless you would rather be doing something else.” ~J M Barrie

“The secret of joy in work is contained in one word-excellence. To know how to do something well is to enjoy it.” ~Pearl S Buck

“When skill and love work together, expect a masterpiece.” ~John Ruskin

“Blessed is he who has found his work; let him ask no other blessedness.” ~Thomas Carlyle

“Work done for love always has a glory.” ~William Barclay

“Although it may seem That the process is slow, Still, work is the yeast That raises the dough.” ~Mary Hamlett Goodman

“Here’s a stubborn truth On which you can bet: The harder you work, The luckier you get.” ~L J Huber

“Now I get me up to work; I pray the Lord I may not shirk, And if I die before tonight, I pray my work will be all right.” ~Donald Sharp

“Work is an extension of personality. It is achievement. It is one of the ways in which a person defines himself, measures his worth, and his humanity.” ~Peter F Drucker

“Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” ~Proverb 16:3
Work As A Source Of Happiness

“Man is happy only as he finds a work worth doing-and does it well.” ~E Merrill Root

“Labor, if it were not necessary for the existence, would be indispensable for the happiness of man.” ~Samuel Johnson

“I never did a day’s work in my life. It was all fun.” ~Thomas Edison

“The supreme accomplishment is to blur the line between work and play.” ~Arthur Toynbee
Value Of Work

“Labor disgraces no man; unfortunately you occasionally find men who disgrace labor.” ~Ulysses S. Grant

“The Carpenter’s cord, if you hold your ear close enough, is musical in the breeze.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

“His brow is wet with honest sweat, He earns whatever he can, And looks the whole world in the face, For he owes not any man.” ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“Work keeps at bay three great evils: boredom, vice, and need.” ~Voltaire

“No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem.” ~Booker T Washington

“The highest reward for a man’s toil is not what he gets for it but what he becomes by it.” ~John Ruskin

“What makes you worthwhile is who you are, not what you do.” ~Marianne Willaims

“To find integrity in our work let us cease to look toward the reward and let us look toward the work.” ~E Merrill Root
Work And Money
“I ask that work should be looked upon, not as a necessary drudgery to be undergone for the purpose of making money, but as a way of life in which the nature of man should find its proper exercise and delight and so fulfill itself to the glory of God.” ~Dorothy L Sayers

“In the long run you will receive more from life doing the job you enjoy than you will ever earn in money from a job you loathe.” ~Terry L Mayfield

“Do what you love, the money will follow.” ~Marsha Sinetar

Change Of Perspective On Work
“A stranger came to three workmen all of whom were employed on the same job. He asked each worker what he was doing. Growled the first man: “I’m breaking rocks.” Said the second: “I’m earning a living.” But the third man replied with a smile, “I’m building a cathedral.”
Funny Work Quotes

“Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance?” ~Charlie McCarthy

“Generate so much loving energy that people want to just come and hang out with you. And when they show up, bill them!” ~Stuart Wilde

The language of God: HAIL

How does God get our attention? 
Through many ways, and one of them is hail.

Dozens killed as ferocious hailstorms devastate south-western China
"Gales and hailstorms have killed at least 39 people and left hundreds injured in southwest and central China. The hailstorms and ferocious winds hit Dianjiang and Liangping counties near the south-west Chinese city of Chongqing on Wednesday night and continued throughout yesterday. Twenty-nine residents were killed and 980 residential buildings destroyed in the region."

Not your average hailstorm
A sunny Sunday afternoon quickly turned to a damaging event across Oklahoma City as a supercell tracked to the southeast from Northwestern Oklahoma, producing hail to the size of softballs along its path. In what may go down as the costliest and most damaging hail storm in Oklahoma City history, thousands of cars and homes were damaged, with many windows and roofs completely destroyed. Not even the TV stations that alert us to impending severe weather were safe, as KFOR lost nearly all of their skylights as they were reporting on the storm, with hail and rain falling into the studio.

Here is a youtube video of the storm, at about 2 minutes it gets really intense. The pool gets whitecaps and looks like it's being bombed, with wavelets 2 feet high spraying everywhere.

In another report, "The storm Sunday afternoon brought hail as large as softballs and driving rain, forcing motorists off roads in an effort to avoid shattered windshields and other damage. The storm produced so much hail, it looked like a snowstorm had hit."


Above, Riley Thompson, 8, of Edmond, Okla., plays on mound of hail stones in the Sam's Club parking lot on Penn Avenue near Memorial Road, Sunday, May 16, 2010 in Oklahoma City. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

Now, a hailstorm by itself is not an indicator of the Lord's wrath nor of His imminent return. However, when the news states that it was THE worst hailstorm ever for that city, one takes notice. God uses hail to demand attention, it is one of His signature calling cards. It behooves us to return to the bible to see when and how He uses hail to make His name known.

God has storehouses of hail (Job 38:22). He uses hail as a just warning to those who refuse to acknowledge Him, notably Pharaoh. "Throughout Egypt hail struck everything in the fields--both men and animals; it beat down everything growing in the fields and stripped every tree." (Exodus 9:25) Initially awed by God's power, Pharaoh acknowledged that he had sinned. However when the rain and hail stopped, He sinned again. God specifically used a massive hailstorm to indicate His power over the earth, and to know that the earth is the LORD'S. Pharaoh did not acknowledge God’s sovereignty.

God uses hail to warn the unrepentant to come back to Him. " 'I smote you and every work of your hands with blasting wind, mildew and hail; yet you did not come back to Me,' declares the LORD." (Haggai 2:17).

He uses hail to render justice upon the wicked. "I will make justice the measuring line and righteousness the plumb line; hail will sweep away your refuge, the lie, and water will overflow your hiding place." (Isaiah 28:17). In one example, the LORD hurled hail down onto the Amorites at Azekah, as a vengeance against the wicked (Joshua 10:11)

God plans to use hail again in the future: "The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered great Babylon, to make her drain the cup of the fury of his wrath. And every island fled away, and no mountains were to be found; and great hailstones, heavy as a hundred-weight, dropped on men from heaven, till men cursed God for the plague of the hail, so fearful was that plague." (Revelation 16:18-21)

It is evident that from His storehouses of hail God has used it for a variety of reasons and will use hail for the same reasons again. Job's verse continues from this "Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow? or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail, "Which I have reserved against the time of trouble, against the day of battle and war?" The 'Time of Jacob's Trouble' is also known as the Tribulation, (Jeremiah 30:7; Daniel 12:1; Matthew 24:15-22 ) and the Revelation verse is the one that promises another plague of hail, one most especially severe with hailstones weighing a hundred pounds.

Terrible hail storms have always been and will be part of God's language to an unrepentant and wicked people. Was the hail storm in Oklahoma City and in China His warning to us? Could be. We look to the bible and see such warnings many times over in the past so we would be remiss is we did not at least let the thought into our mind that He may be speaking again right now. Are you listening?

Hello Friend...

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Carrots, Eggs or Coffee? Which One Are YOU

Grandmother says... Carrots, Eggs, or Coffee; "Which are you?"

A young woman went to her grandmother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose.

Her grandmother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs and the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her granddaughter, she asked, "Tell me what do you see?"

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.

She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they got soft.She then asked her to take an egg and break it.

After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.

Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The granddaughter smiled, as she tasted its rich aroma. The granddaughter then asked. "What's the point,grandmother?"

Her grandmother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity--boiling water--but each reacted differently.

The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened.

The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" she asked her granddaughter.

"When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?"

Think of this: Which am I?

Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff?

Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.

When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest do you elevate to another level?


Easy fruit cake – fruity, boozy and ready for Christmas!

Your fruit cake should have been baked by now and you should be feeding it with brandy every week ! Well, maybe if you were Julia Child or your great granny, yes, but hey, we live in the real world which is pretty hurried and fast at the moment. With this easy fruit cake recipe, you can make your fruit cake with not much effort and with a drizzle of your favorite brandy every week or so, your fruit cake will be perfect by Christmas!

Fruit cake is made with chopped dried fruit, or cake mix as we know it here, which is steeped in either brandy or rum! This fruit mix is boiled and then basically flour and eggs are added to yield a rich moist and utterly delicious cake! Fruit cakes come in all shapes and sizes, round, loaf size, plain or covered in marzipan it all depends where you live, what the occasion is and what your preferences are.

Easy Fruit Cake Recipe:  (makes one 23 cm round cake)
  • 500 g mixed dried fruit or cake mix
  • 250 g butter
  • 250 ml sugar
  • 250 ml water
  • 250 g dates
Begin by preparing your cake tin. Prepare your pan by treating it with Spray n Cook and also line the cake tin with 2 layers of baking paper. Bring the above ingredients to the boil and boil for 20 minutes, taking care not to burn the mixture. 
Allow to cool and in the same pot, add the following:
  • 10 ml bicarb dissolved in a little warm water
  • 25 ml brandy
  • 10 ml baking powder
  • 500 ml flour
  • 2 eggs – beaten
  • 100 g nuts
  • 100 g cherries
Mix your cake batter properly and pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 2 hours at 140 C. Check with a skewer to see if cake is done. Remove cake from pan, but keep baking paper in tact. Allow to cool and pour over your first 3 T of brandy. Keep in a airtight container and twice more feed the cake with brandy!

Even if you bake them today (a month late) they will still be delicious by Christmas!
It is important that you ripen the cake properly, feeding it with brandy or rum before your enjoy it!

Baking Mosbolletjies!!

Baking my mosbolletjies began as a thought, something on my bucket list and turned out to be a highlight in my kitchen. Baking my mosbolletjies started as a solo event and it touched the hearts of so many and I think that is how Ouma Mina would have wanted my experience to be.

Baking, I know you can do, but I also know that I have lost quite a few of you know, because you are wondering: What the heck are mosbolletjies? Mosbolletjies are made from dough leavened with the must of grapes. Mosbolletjies can either be eaten warm with soft butter or dried in the oven to make rusks. The first Mosbolletjies was made by the French Huguenots and in texture it is similar to the French Brioche, but the taste is quite unique and delicious.


Mosbolletjies Recipe
(recipe from De Wetshof Farm)
  • 2.7 kg flour
  • 15 ml salt
  • 60 ml aniseed
  • 750 ml milk
  • 125g margarine or butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 x 250 ml (4 k) sugar
  • 1,125 liters (4 1/2 cups) grape must – strained through a sieve
How to:

Pour flour into a large bowl and add salt and aniseed. Heat milk and butter to a boil and allow to cool to lukewarm. Add eggs and sugar, whisk and add to flour. Add the grape must , knead lightly and then knead well for about 15-20 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic and no longer sticks to your hands. Francina’s tip: Keep an extra bowl of flour and a cup of must next to you while you knee. If dough is too sticky, sprinkle a little flour. If it seems too dry, wet your hands with wine and knee further. Cover bowl with a cloth and leave to rise in a warm place overnight.
Preheat the oven to 180 ° C. Knead dough the next morning. Brush a little melted butter on your hands and roll dough into tennis ball-sized orbs. Pack against each other in breadpans which you have treated with non-stick spray and leave pans in a warm place to allow dough tp have its second rising. Once the pans are almost full, place mosbolletjies in the oven and reduce oven temperature to 140 ° C. Bake for 40-60 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through. Brush with sugar water and turn out onto wire racks. Eat buns freshly smeared with butter or dry it out for mosbeskuit.
Deliver three large loaves with 12-14 balls in each.

Language of God: DROUGHT

God communicates with His people. Isn't that magnificent? He wants to have a relationship with us. God has always used different ways to communicate with man. He wants us to know Him, His expectations of us, His love and His reproof.
In the Garden, He would walk in the cool of the day. (Gen 3:8). With Moses He spoke face to face. (Exodus 33:11). Or through a bush! (Exodus 3:1).

He spoke to the the prophets (Jeremiah 36:2). In this way He sent the Law and then later He sent the Spirit to inspire the words of the bible, written down by the chosen apostles and disciples. (1 Corinthians 2:12-13; 2 Timothy 3:16-17). He sent angels with messages (Acts 8:26; Luke 2:9). He speaks to us through discipline (Hebrews 12:5-11) and trials (1 Peter 1:6-7). Sometimes He even uses a donkey (Numbers 2:28).

He uses symbols. "And God said to Noah: I will make a covenant with you. Never again will all men die because of a flood. This is my token to remind you of my promise. I will set a rainbow in the sky." (Genesis 9:11-17). Bread is a symbol of Jesus' life sustaining eternal truth. "And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life..." (John 6:35)

If you think about the myriad ways God speaks to us, it is amazing. There is another way He speaks, and like all the other ways, He uses vocabulary. For example, if you hadn't read the bible you would not know that God is speaking to us when He sends a rainbow. This next language He uses to speak to us is through 'natural' events. Earthquake, fire, hail, thunder, drought...are all ways God sends His people His word and expresses His will.

God is the creator of the earth and all the universe. (Psalm 24:1). He can and does use anything in it to get His point across. In Revelation we see 100 pound hailstones, a sun that turns up the heat, earthquakes, and at one point, no rain for three and a half years. (Revelation 11:6).

Remember that everything that happens on the earth, God either indirectly allows to happen, or directly causes to happen. Allows, or causes. That's it. When people mock the notion that a particular natural disaster event was due to God, they are wrong. We don't always know the reason behind the event's occurrence but because God is sovereign, He either caused it or allowed it. Here is God causing an event:

"Then the LORD's anger will burn against you, and he will shut the heavens so that it will not rain and the ground will yield no produce, and you will soon perish from the good land the LORD is giving you." (Deuteronomy 11:1)

Here is God allowing an event. Satan had come to God and asked to harass Job. God said OK, but do not kill him. The great wind that came and killed Job's sons and daughters is one of the events that God allowed to happen:

"While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother's house, and behold, a great wind came across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young people, and they are dead, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” (Job 1:18-19).

Let's focus on drought as one of God's vocabulary words. Drought is not a sudden cataclysmic event like an earthquake. It takes a long time to happen and its build-up is more creeping than instant. That is what makes it even more amazing. Only God who knows the end from the beginning, knows how to start a drought years prior and allow its progression to increase to the point of pain just at the moment the people need to be pricked. That is the heavenly dynamic. This article from NASA explains the earthly dynamic,

"While much of the weather that we experience is brief and short-lived, drought is a more gradual phenomenon, slowly taking hold of an area and tightening its grip with time. In severe cases, drought can last for many years, and can have devastating effects on agriculture and water supplies. ... In general, drought is defined as an extended period–a season, a year, or several years–of deficient rainfall relative to the statistical multi-year average for a region."

Australia is susceptible to droughts-- "Why are droughts dangerous? When there is a drought, there is less water available for growing crops, farming animals, industry and our cities. Droughts also impact the environment by causing erosion, harm animals by destroying their homes and cause people to pay more for food and affect our water supplies. Droughts are hard to predict and also hard to live with." (Source)

Places in Africa are in a terrible drought. "Two of Africa's impoverished drylands - the Horn of Africa in the East and the Sahel in the West - have experienced devastating droughts and famines in the past two years: the rains never came, causing many thousands to perish, while millions face life-threatening hunger."

The United States of America is in a terrible drought right now.

Corn prices hit record as crops shrivel
"Corn prices surged to a new record high Tuesday, as the worst drought in more than 50 years continues to plague more than half the country. Almost 90% of the United States' corn crops are in drought ravaged areas, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and nearly 40% are situated in the hardest hit spots. Corn prices have soared more than 50% during the past six weeks as the crops continue to shrivel in relentless dry heat throughout the Midwest."

Worst U.S. Drought in 50 Years to Raise Food Prices in 2013
"We’re expecting another year of tough food prices, bad news for consumers,” said USDA food economist Richard Volpe. “The difference between normal and higher than normal in this case is one hundred percent attributable to the drought,” Volpe said. The food price index data is released by USDA each month; it is a set of numbers that indicates how much an average shopper is likely to pay at the supermarket. ... More than 60 percent of America’s farms are located in areas experiencing drought. Two thirds of all crops and two thirds of livestock are produced in areas experiencing at least moderate drought."

The dry section of the Morse Reservoir, one of three reservoirs which supply water to nearby Indianapolis, in Cicero, Indiana,on July 12, 2012. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

This next verse is a direct example of how He uses the language of drought to squeeze His people and warn them they need to repent-

"When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people, if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayer that is made in this place." (2 Chronicles 7:13)

God is telling us a few things here. First, He controls the heavens and allows or disallows rain. Second, when God shuts up heaven and prevents rain it is because they have turned their faces away from Him. Third, He makes a promise, if they repent and turn their faces toward Him, He will re-open heaven. What a blessing! God is holy- He hates sin. God is kind, He warns His people.

In this next biblical example, God is telling us that His decision to send drought or rain is extremely precise. He is very much in control.

“I also withheld the rain from you when there were yet three months to the harvest; I would send rain on one city, and send no rain on another city; one field would have rain, and the field on which it did not rain would wither;" (Amos 4:7).

Annie Vallotton Amos 4:7 illustration Good News Bible

"Still you did not come back to Me"

Most of America, and part of Africa and Australia are without water. At the same this time China and Japan and North Korea have endured torrential rains in just these last weeks.

Yesterday- Torrential rains hit China's arid northwest

"The heaviest downpours in six decades have hit Yinchuan, capital of northwest China's Ningxia Hui autonomous region, since Sunday, authorities said.Precipitation from 8 a.m. Sunday to 8 a.m. Monday in the city proper exceeded 100 mm, or half of the average annual precipitation in the city, according to the city's flood control and drought relief headquarters."
Credit AP, from

God either directly causes or indirectly allows each thing to happen on this earth and in heaven. Every drop of rain is noted by Him. Each arid seed blowing down a Kansas drought-stricken path is seen by Him. God speaks to us in many ways, praise His name! One way is through what the secular world calls 'natural disasters'...but I call it the loving Hand of an angry God who seeks to turn His rebellious children from their ways. It's all in the vocabulary. And the dictionary to understand this language is the bible.

Good Morning!

Monday, 25 November 2013


The Language of God: STILL SMALL VOICE

Here is a series you might enjoy: The Language of God. In the bible, God spoke in a number of ways to His people, or the announce His presence, or His displeasure. Weather was one of the ways He spoke. Since God is the same today, yesterday and forever, it stands to reason that He might be speaking in the same way today. But do we hear Him through the clutter? Do we listen for Him to speak in these same ways? The world has changed, but He has not.

Today we will examine the Language of God: 
The Still Small Voice!

It is a given that God is powerful. He has spoken in a number of ways that are loud! Thunder, hail, lightning, earthquake and fire are very noisy. You can't miss hearing those! In addition, Psalm 29 shows us from His own Word more ways He speaks:

Psalm 29, various verses--
  • The voice of the LORD is upon the waters; The God of glory thunders, The LORD is over many waters.
  • The voice of the LORD is powerful, The voice of the LORD is majestic.
  • The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; Yes, the LORD breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon. 
  • The voice of the LORD hews out flames of fire.
  • The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; The LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the LORD makes the deer to calve And strips the forests bare; And in His temple everything says, “Glory"
The cedars of Lebanon were sturdy trees up to 130 feet tall. It would take a mighty voice to break those!

But then there is this voice: "Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice." (1 Kings 19:11-12)

The LORD breaks rocks! He topples cedars! He quakes the earth! The LORD is mighty, there is no doubt about that. But He is a personal God, too. He is not remote, dwelling on Olympus remotely and capriciously messing up men's affairs for their own entertainment's sake.

He is with us, that is His name: Emmanuel, God with us! When He wants to speak to our soul, to our heart, He speaks in a still small voice. He is loving of all humanity and He seeks to speak to us in the quiet of our hearts. To hear Him, though, a person must be quiet themselves. "But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you." (Matthew 6:6)

Though we pride ourselves these days on multitasking, we are really overdue for a de-cluttering. Multitasking simply means that we mask God's voice.

All that noise drowns out God's still, small voice. When we start listening to other things besides God then the still small voice that penetrates the clutter will be satan's, hissing, "Hath God really said...?" Once our ears are plugged up with noise, then our eyes are taken off God and we drift away from the straight and narrow path. Get your attention away from the tumult of the natural and unnatural world, and carve out a quiet space to listen to God. One way we do that is in the prayer closet. When you pray, you talk, but then how much do you listen for a response? Do you stay in a pose of quiet contemplation, focusing on the attributes of God while you wait on Him? Or is there music going on in the background? Television? Is your cell phone on?

Another way to hear His still, small voice is by reading the Word. Again, make sure the tumult is off. Read, and when you feel an impression, or when it seems that you want to ponder a verse for a while, it may indeed be the still small voice calling attention to a deeper truth He wants to impart.

I'm amazed by the speed and noise of our world today. When I was little, 40-35 years ago, the number one television program was Little House on the Prairie. If you watch it now, it seems unbearably slow and too stodgy and quiet. That is because it isn't fast-paced, it didn't have jazzy music and the editing preferred long slow scenes instead of quick cuts. But 35 years ago was not that long ago. Nowadays if something isn't happening on the tv, DVD, Playstation, Wii, cell phone or twitter it seems like life has stopped.

Our God is a personal God. He speaks to us in the quiet. Shhh.

When you're down to nothing, God is up to something...

This is beautiful, so take 2 minutes to read!

She jumped up as soon as she saw the surgeon come out of the operating room. She said: 'How is my little boy? Is he going to be all right? When can I see him?'

The surgeon said, 'I'm sorry. We did all we could, but your boy didn't make it.'

Sally said, 'Why do little children get cancer? Doesn't God care any more? Where were you, God, when my son needed you?'

The surgeon asked, 'Would you like some time alone with your son? One of the nurses will be out in a few minutes, before he's transported to the university..'

Sally asked the nurse to stay with her while she said good bye to son. She ran her fingers lovingly through his thick red curly hair. 'Would you like a lock of his hair?' the nurse asked.. Sally nodded yes. The nurse cut a lock of the boy's hair, put it in a plastic bag and handed it to Sally.

The mother said, 'It was Jimmy's idea to donate his body to the University for Study. He said it might help somebody else..... 'I said no at first, but Jimmy said, 'Mom, I won't be using it after I die. Maybe it will help some other little boy spend one more day with his Mom..' She went on, 'My Jimmy had a heart of gold. Always thinking of someone else. Always wanting to help others if he could..

Sally walked out of Children's Mercy Hospital for the last time, after spending most of the last six months there. She put the bag with Jimmy's belongings on the seat beside her in the car.

The drive home was difficult. It was even harder to enter the empty house. She carried Jimmy's belongings, and the plastic bag with the lock of his hair to her son's room.

She started placing the model cars and other personal things back in his room exactly where he had always kept them She lay down across his bed and, hugging his pillow, cried herself to sleep.

It was around midnight when Sally awoke. Lying beside her on the bed was a folded letter. The letter said:

'Dear Mom,
I know you're going to miss me; but don't think that I will ever forget you, or stop loving you, just 'cause I'm not around to say 'I Love You'. I will always love you, Mom, even more with each day.. Someday we will see each other again. Until then, if you want to adopt a little boy so you won't be so lonely, that's okay with me... He can have my room and old stuff to play with. But, if you decide to get a girl instead, she probably wouldn't like the same things us boys do. You'll have to buy her dolls and stuff girls like, you know.
Don't be sad thinking about me.. This really is a neat place. Grandma and Grandpa met me as soon as I got here and showed me around some, but it will take a long time to see everything. The angels are so cool. I love to watch them fly. And, you know what? Jesus doesn't look like any of his pictures. Yet, when I saw Him, I knew it was Him. Jesus himself took me to see GOD! And guess what, Mom? I got to sit on God's knee and talk to Him, like I was somebody important. That's when I told Him that I wanted to write you a letter, to tell you good bye and everything. But I already knew that wasn't allowed. Well, you know what Mom? God handed me some paper and His own personal pen to write you this letter I think Gabriel is the name of the angel who is going to drop this letter off to you. God said for me to give you the answer to one of the questions you asked Him 'where was He when I needed him?' 'God said He was in the same place with me, as when His son Jesus was on the cross. He was right there, as He always is with all His children.

Oh, by the way, Mom, no one else can see what I've written except you... To everyone else this is just a blank piece of paper. Isn't that cool? I have to give God His pen back now He needs it to write some more names in the Book of Life. Tonight I get to sit at the table with Jesus for supper. I'm sure the food will be great.

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you. I don't hurt anymore the cancer is all gone.. I'm glad because I couldn't stand that pain anymore and God couldn't stand to see me hurt so much, either. That's when He sent The Angel of Mercy to come get me. The Angel said I was a Special Delivery! How about that?

Signed with Love from God, Jesus & Me

Please Re post this and within the hour you will have caused a multitude of believers to pray to God for each other. Then sit back and feel the Holy Spirit work in your life for doing what you know God loves

"When you're down to nothing, God is up to something!"

Have a Beautiful Day !

Saturday, 23 November 2013

How To Make Classic Egg Salad!


Delicious, versatile egg salad. Keep it plain and simple, or spice it up with an endless array of extras.

I just love a good egg salad sandwich: the creaminess of the eggs and mayo, the crunch of celery, the faint but not overwhelming tang of raw onion. So perfect! I go for egg salad when I want the simple, unchallenging comfort of nursery food. Unless of course I'm feeling a little reckless, in which case out comes the curry powder. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's nail the classic, uncomplicated egg salad recipe first.

While hard boiled eggs and mayonnaise may be the baseline, I'm going to go out on a limb here and declare that celery and onion are necessary, too. I say this with some confidence because basically all of the egg salad recipes I researched for this post had onions and celery, along with a little salt and pepper. So that's what we'll call classic egg salad here. Of course, you can go beyond this alliance with other additions or make little substitutions here and there (see Recipe Notes.) Egg salad is definitely the people's dish and thus belongs to us all.
Note before we get started. I usually never measure my ingredients when I make egg salad. I cut up a green onion and if it doesn't look like enough, I add a little more. If the mixture isn't creamy enough, in goes another dollop of mayo. So please consider this recipe a rough guide and make adjustments based on your own style.

How To Make Classic Egg Salad
Ingredients:  (
Makes enough for 2 or 3 egg salad sandwiches

  • 6 hard boiled eggs, peeled, rinsed, and dried
  • 1/3 cup (heaping) celery, cut into a small dice
  • 1/4 cup (scant) green onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup (or more) mayonnaise
  • Pinch of salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • Diced radishes and sliced chives for garnish (optional)
Cutting board
Medium-sized bowl
Wooden spoon or large spoon for mixing

Prep the eggs. Slice the eggs into quarters, chop them into pieces, and place in a medium bowl. Eggs can also be sieved, mashed with a potato masher or fork, or sliced with an egg slicer.
Combine and mix ingredients. Add celery, onion, mayo, a pinch of salt and several grinds of pepper. Mix lightly until the mixture comes together.
Taste and adjust seasonings. Taste the egg salad and add more salt and pepper, onion, or mayonnaise if needed. Serve on your bread of choice or on a bed of lettuce. Sprinkle with optional radish and chives, if using.

Recipe Notes:  Variations and additions
Curried: Curry powder, grapes sliced in half or apple chunks, chopped almonds or pistachios
Herbed: Dill, basil, parsley, tarragon either in combination or alone
Waldorf: Apples, walnuts, celery
Any of the following: Poppyseed, sunflower seeds, mustard (smooth or coarse), paprika (usually to garnish), crumbled bacon, pickle relish, chopped olives, capers, minced jalapeƱo, sriracha, avocado (mashed or diced)
Onion Substitutions: I use green onions here because they tend to be mild and it's easy to chop up as much as I need. Red onion or shallots are another good choice, if they are mild and sweet. Chives are a good option if any raw onion is too much for you. Just substitute in the same amount called for the onions.
Avoiding Soggy Celery (And Egg Salad): Cut celery releases a lot of water, which explains how an egg salad sandwich can get soggy if let to sit too long. If you want to avoid this, eliminate the celery and substitute a pinch of celery seed for flavor or just chop of some celery leaves instead. You can also keep the celery off to the side and sprinkle it on just before eating.
Building the Sandwich: I like to use a peppery green on my egg salad sandwich, such as arugula or cress. Spinach is another good choice. Most forms of lettuce are good, too, but I find iceberg lettuce a little too watery.

I also like radishes with my egg salad as they offer crunch and color and occasionally, a little peppery zing. Slice them thin and add as a layer on the bread, or dice them finely and fold into the egg salad.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Your Tongue Can Be Your Worst Enemy!

It is almost impossible for me to live at peace with anyone! Almost every time I opened my mouth, I said something ugly. I was constantly hurting people whom I was close to. In fact, I spoke more harshly to them than to anyone else.

If you’ve developed the habit of speaking harshly, start changing that habit today. When someone crosses you on the job, at school or wherever and you’re tempted to tear into them with cruel words, STOP! Then take a few moments to give thanks and praise to God. Once you begin thinking about how good God is, more often than not, those harsh, angry words will just slip away unspoken.

Instead of using your tongue to tear people down, train it to lift God’s praises up. Then living at peace with others will come easily to you! Try it! Just don’t read it. If you read, you won’t DEVELOP! Practice and you will succeed!

~Author Unknown~

Your words, your dreams and your thoughts have power to create conditions in your life. What you speak about; you can bring about.
  1. If you keep saying you can’t stand your job, you might lose your job. 
  2. If you keep saying you can’t stand your body, your body can become sick. 
  3. If you keep saying you can’t stand your car, your car could be stolen or just stop operating. 
  4. If you keep saying you’re broke, guess what? You’ll always be broke. 
  5. If you keep saying you can’t trust a man or trust a woman, you will always find someone in your life to hurt and betray you. 
  6. If you keep saying you can’t find a job, you will remain unemployed. 
  7. If you keep saying you can’t find someone to love you or believe in you; your very thought will attract more experiences to confirm your beliefs. 
  8. If you keep talking about a divorce or break up in a relationship, then you might end up with it. 
  9. Turn your thoughts and conversations around to be more positive and power packed with faith, hope, love and action. 

Don’t be afraid to believe that you can have what you want and deserve.

Watch your Thoughts – they become words.
Watch your words – they become actions.
Watch your actions – they become habits.
Watch your Habits – they become character.
Watch your Character – for it becomes your Destiny.
The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settle for. (Yes! I like that!)

Thought I would share this with you.
In the search for me, I discovered truth.
In the search for truth, I discovered love.
In the search for love, I discovered GOD.
And in God, I have found Everything.

Be Blessed my friends…………….and………. Watch how your circumstances and situations begin to change when you change the way you speak. 

Proverbs 18:21 –
Death and life are in the power of the tongue and those who love it will eat its fruit…

Why Does My Body Do That?

Learn the common causes behind your body's little quirks
Whether uncomfortable, embarrassing or just plain weird, there are some pretty funky things that our bodies do. Curious about the causes of such reactions as hiccups, goose bumps and eye twitches.... Read on to discover the common reasons for 14 peculiar bodily functions.

If your body is low on oxygen, your mouth opens wide and tries to suck more in. Yawning is a way to regulate the amount of carbon dioxide and oxygen in your blood. Unfortunately, yawns are nearly impossible to stifle.

Serious eye twitches can be a symptom of neurological disorders, but often there is a more mundane explanation. Common causes for eye twitches include stress, lack of sleep, extended staring or eye strain. Before you get frantic, try reducing your stress level, cutting back on caffeine and catching up on sleep.

According to Dr. Plasker, our skin most often gets itchy because of dryness associated with the environment or over-washing-water and soap can strip skin of its natural oils, thus sapping moisture. Face or body lotion should be able to keep these types of itches under control; also look for body washes and soaps labeled "moisturizing." If you still have itchy patches, you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to a chemical, plant, food, animal or drug. See an allergist if the itching is persistent.

If you've frequently got a case of the hiccups, try slowing down when you eat and drink, suggests Dr. Plasker. Doing either too quickly causes your stomach to swell; this irritates your diaphragm, which contracts and causes hiccups. You may also get hiccups in emotional situations or if your body experiences a sudden temperature change. In both of these cases, the hiccups are a result of a glitch in your nerve pathways, which is why a sudden scare-which might shake up and reset your nerves-can sometimes end an episode.

Those tiny bumps that cover your skin when you're cold or scared are actually a defense mechanism. Goose bumps occur when the arrector pili, a tiny muscle that connects the hair follicle with skin, contracts and makes the hair stand on end. If you had more hair-like cavemen did-the upright hair would trap air to keep you warm or make you look bushier and therefore more threatening to predators.

Sneezes happen when your body is trying to expel an irritant from the nasal cavity. If you have allergies, pollen or pet dander is usually to blame. If you have a cold, your body makes mucus to trap the virus, and sneezing helps force it (and the sickness) out of your body. An over-the-counter allergy or cold medicine helps suppress your reaction to allergens or reduce mucus production, which should prevent sneezing fits.

A cough is another mechanism your body uses to get rid of irritants. There are special cells along your air passage, says Dr. Plasker, that recognize irritants and force them out. Common colds, sinus infections and pneumonia all increase your body's mucus production, which triggers coughing. Smoking and asthma also tend to irritate the cells. To help cut down on chronic coughing, exercise regularly and practice good posture to keep your air passage open.

These sudden, super-painful muscle spasms can be blamed on several things, including dehydration or electrolyte imbalances-often from strenuous exercise. After a demanding workout or an extra-long run, sip a sports drink to keep your system running smoothly. If you experience this type of cramping, walk around to help relieve the pain.

Shivering, says Dr. Plasker, is full-body muscle twitching. When your temperature drops too low, your body shakes all over in an attempt to generate heat. The only way to cure these kind of shivers is to get your temperature back to 98.6°F.

Ear ringing, or tinnitus, can happen for two reasons. If you have fluid or an infection in your middle ear, you may hear a constant buzz. However, the more common cause is damage to the microscopic ends of your hearing nerves, which often happens when you're exposed to loud noises. To prevent permanent damage (and preserve your hearing), wear earplugs at concerts and sporting events-or even when you mow the lawn.

As food, liquid and gas move through your digestive tract, your stomach muscles and intestines contract and cause rumbling noises-borborygmi is the scientific name. Everyone's stomach makes noise during digestion, but if you have extra-loud rumbles, a teaspoon of olive oil or a cup of herbal tea with lemon may help ease them, says Dr. Plasker.

When there's consistent pressure on part of a limb-like when you sit on your feet or rest your head on an arm-the pressure squeezes your nerve pathways and scrambles messages sent to your brain. The mixed messages make you lose feeling in the squished body part because your brain has trouble telling it what to do. To prevent a case of pins and needles, avoid sitting or lying in positions that compress your nerves.

If you stand too quickly, suffer a blow to the head or are stricken by a migraine, there's a good chance you'll see stars as blood surges to different parts of your body. Generally these tiny flashes of light will fade in a few seconds. If you see stars for more than a few moments, you could have a tear or tiny clot in your retina, and you should consult a physician immediately.

The Eustachian tube in your inner ear is responsible for maintaining equal pressure on both sides of your eardrum. When you experience a rapid change in altitude-during takeoff in an airplane or when riding an elevator in an extra-tall building-the Eustachian tube opens to release pressure, and you hear a pop. To force the tube open (and "pop" your ears), squeeze your nostrils closed while exhaling forcefully through your nose.