Thursday, February 21, 2013

A recipe....sort of...

Well, I never thought that I, of all people, would be posting a recipe on here, but the photo garnered such a response on Facebook that I thought I would share what I did. =)  So, here goes

My (totally not really a recipe) recipe.
I'm sorry it's not a better picture,
but I didn't take it with the intention of posting it.
And, yes, the plate is sitting on my lap. =)

Bacon-wrapped Raspberry Chicken

Boneless Chicken Tenderloins
Raspberry Salsa (This is my all-time favorite!)
Olive oil

Heat olive oil in a frying pan.
Wrap each chicken strip in a strip of bacon.
After chicken has cooked a few minutes, baste the top with Raspberry Salsa.  When you flip the strips during cooking, baste the other side.

Roasted Asparagus

Fresh Asparagus
Olive oil
Seasoned Salt

Wash asparagus and cut off the bottom tips.
Place in baking dish.
Drizzle with olive oil and shake the dish to roll the asparagus in the oil, coating it.
Sprinkle with Seasoned salt.
Bake until tender. (I think I baked them for 10 minutes at 350.)

That's all. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Dancing with imagination

The over-excitement with my finally found poetry notebook continues....So sorry if I'm boring you. =)


A sculptor at his block,
An artist with his brush--
A writer's scratching pen,
A farmer's tending hands--

Incarnation all around us--
Divinity, worshiped intrinsically,
Shines out of creation
Bringing me to my knees.

Oh! We are wonderfully made!
You, beautiful One, surround us,
Piercing through our world,
Dancing with imagination.

Only One of all creativity
Can deserve such adoration!
Designing, shaping, speaking--
Inspiration flows from Inspiration.

K. Yerton

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happy, happy, joy, joy...

After several months of looking, I finally found the notebook of my poetry! I was nearing panic stage. =)

So, here is a poem I wrote on my Blackberry a few years ago, while sitting under a tree at a local park.


Like the leaves that carpet the autumn floor,
My sins have fallen before Your gaze--
Tangible proof of my death, piled in heaps--
Brown, orange, yellow--a blaze of imperfection.

Slowly, deliberately, You gather them together.
I turn from the sign, sickened by my guilt,
When I hear Your voice calling, calling--

A fire--blood-red, scorching--rises to the sky--
Your hands--scarred by the flames You gave,
Purposefully blotting out the record of my wrong--
Reach out to me from the smoke,
Welcoming me with Your embrace.

--K. Yerton

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Just make it happen....the first time

Ideas tend to drop themselves on me at the weirdest times.  For example, I was painting my fingernails last night when I was struck with today's thought.  (Of course, my nails were wet at the time, so I'm typing it out the next morning.) But, before I dive straight into that, let me set up the scene.

As previously stated, I was painting my nails.  Now, I make no claim to be a good manicurist, mainly for the simple reason that I am too impatient.  I hate waiting for that stupid polish to dry! Thus, I am always slapping on a really thick layer and then denting, smudging, or just generally destroying it.  Just in case you are one of the 3 people on this planet who have never held a paintbrush, here's a tip: several thin layers > one thick layer.  I, unfortunately, very seldom uphold that rule; instead, I tend to try to rush through the steps to reach that so satisfying feeling of completion.  Of course, it doesn't work, though.  I almost always have to fix something because I was in a hurry the first time.  

There! That was my whole point in that tirade! =)  "Haste makes waste."  My shiny, wet fingertips made me think about all the time I have wasted re-doing things in my never-ending attempt to get things done.  Oddly enough, however, in issues not pertaining to crafts or nail polish, I tend to be a front-end planner.  If I'm decorating, I will get all of my ideas organized (at least mentally) and planned through before I start.  If I'm tackling a new task at work, I will go through the steps and see if there is any way of improving or stream-lining the process.  If I'm building something, I will read all the instructions before I start.  This means that I sometimes do things non-traditionally because I've figured out a different method that will be more effective or faster; but I also get it done correctly the first time.

Now, to my "big thought."  I have spent my entire life in church, in ministry:  minister's kid, youth worker, intern, worship leader.  I can't tell you how many times I have heard the phrase "Make it happen."  (This is especially true in youth ministry.)  Now, don't get me wrong; I am completely aware that we have almost always been understaffed and underfunded.  In fact, I don't think there is a single area of any church, most especially in youth ministry, that has a more than sufficient budget and more than enough workers.  However, this concept of "making it happen" does so much more harm than good.

I was involved with a particular ministry for a while several years ago.  It was a very good ministry, accomplished a lot, made an impact. However, there was an over-whelming attitude of "Make it happen."  In fact, the phrase was a running joke we heard it so often.

"Build a 40' wall out of boxes in two days?"
"Make it happen."

"Prepare a meal for 100 people in an hour?"
"Make it happen."

"Put together a meaningful service in 15 minutes?"
"Make it happen."

If I heard it once, I head it a thousand times.  

Now, believe me, after nearly 33 years in a preacher's family and 15+ years in youth ministry, I understand that sometimes you just don't have enough warning or plans have to be changed last-minute.  I am not denying that fact; however, so much of this frantic running around could be saved with a little forethought.  

I was constantly frustrated with the complete lack of planning on the front end, but the most baffling part was that everyone seemed proud of the fact that there was no method.  They loved that they could dive into a project and cobble something together without "wasting" time.  Unfortunately, they also seemed to be blind to the fact that they had to rebuild the project three times before they were done.  Sure, they had to completely scrap their original attempts and spend more money on supplies, but by George, they "made it happen!"  I watched the leadership "delegate" tasks without giving any instructions or guidelines for the desired result.  My fellow-workers would be half-way through a major project before the leader would check the progress, and 9 times out of 10, it wasn't what was desired and had to be torn down and re-started.  

Now, for all of you who have hackles rising at my audacity to criticize something that has seemed so effective for so long, I would like to ask you one simple question:  

Could it have been better?

The videos that were created in less than 2 days; could they have been technically better with more time for filming and editing?

The full-length scripts that weren't written until 2 weeks before the performance; could they have been smoother and more professional with more time for character development and rehearsal?

The worship sets that were planned 30 minutes before service; could they have been more anointed with more time for prayerful consideration?

The illustrations that were "inspired" at the last minute; could they have been more effectively executed with more time for integration?

Could it have been better?

I am very much afraid that, in our quest to make things good, we have utterly given up on great.  We have gotten so used to the idea of last minute panic, that we don't think any more time is necessary.  Because God has graciously used our efforts, we don't feel that we have to try harder.  We think frantic, last minute, busyness is as effective as careful, purposeful design.

Unfortunately, however, it's just laziness.