Say, “Amen!”

I recently had the joy of a visit from my granddaughter Kennedy, followed by a visit from our family to hers.  At meal times, Kennedy, who is just turning two, waits for everyone to sit down.  Then she smiles and calls out, “Say, Amen!”  That’s our cue to say grace together, “God is great, God is good, and we thank Him for our food, Amen!”  Kennedy loves the “Amen” part!

I had just been pondering a devotion based on Psalm 50:23 for moms, and thought Kennedy’s “amens” sure fit.  One of the simplest, yet profound, prayers we can teach our children and grandchildren is to say “thank you” to God.  This simple act of thanksgiving opens the door of conversation between child and the Heavenly Father, leading the way to knowing Jesus as Savior.

When I read Psalm 50:23, I see two things our thanks brings: 1) Honor to God, 2) Jesus will show us His salvation.  Isn’t that wonderful?  When we teach our children to say thank you to God, we are honoring Him and leading them to an eternity with Jesus.

Those who sacrifice thank offerings honor Me,
    and to the blameless I will show My salvation. Psalm 50:23 (NIV)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Let’s start this very day, teaching our kids to say thank you to Jesus, and setting an example of thankfulness in all our prayers, too. One of my favorite little kid prayer books has the prayer, “Thank you for the world so sweet, thank you for the food we eat, thank you for the birds that sing, thank you, God, for everything! Amen!”

“Amen!
Praise and glory
and wisdom and thanks and honor
and power and strength
be to our God for ever and ever.
Amen!” Revelation 7:12 (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011

How Jesus Grieved

Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you. John 16:22 (NKJV)

After my Daddy died, I wondered how to deal with my grief.  The Bible promises us in Matthew 5:4, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”

So, claiming this promise, I searched the Gospels to discover how Jesus handled His grief.  What He did was really quite simple, Jesus spent time with His Father in prayer and kept serving others through His ministry.  Let’s take a look.

In Matthew 14:12-13 we read how Jesus learned his cousin, John the Baptist, had been beheaded.  Jesus went to a deserted place to be by Himself and talk to God.  How did God comfort Him?  He sent 5000 people for Jesus to heal and feed!  That must have taken Jesus’ mind off His sorrows for a little bit.  And in comforting others, Jesus also was comforted.

We can also look at John 11 for the story of Jesus’ friend Lazarus.  Lazarus was the brother of Jesus’ friends Mary and Martha.  Word was sent for Jesus to hurry and come, for Lazarus was very sick. But Jesus waited and Lazarus died.  When Jesus finally arrived four days late,  both Martha and Mary said, “If you had been here, my brother would not have died!”  And what did Jesus do?  Jesus wept. Then He ministered to Mary and Martha and raised Lazarus from the grave to the glory of God the Father.

What can we learn about grieving from Jesus?

  • Cry, it’s okay.
  • Spend time with the Father in prayer.
  • Keep on serving.

Most of all, let Jesus carry you and wipe away your tears.  I know, for I’ve lost my Daddy, three unborn babies, and my college cross country team. When I see pictures of Daddy now, I think, “Daddy, you should be here.”  When the pastor spoke of Mary meeting Jesus in the garden on the first Easter morning, I wished Daddy could be at the cemetery to greet us when we visited after the service. When I see a little girl born around 2009, I think that’s how big my Gloria Anne would be. And, when I saw a space station movie which told of the Challenger explosion in 1986 (32 years ago!), tears gushed from my eyes as I recalled the time in my life when I also lost my cross country team.  Only Jesus can carry us through all this. We must hold all Jesus’ promises and remember, this earthly life is not the end…we have eternity in heaven with Jesus.

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Are you grieving for a loved one?  Perhaps you know someone who is grieving who you can help.  Follow Jesus’ example: Cry, Pray, Keep serving, all the while remembering God’s promise of heaven. Let Jesus carry you.

He will swallow up death forever,
And the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces… Isaiah 25:8 (NKJV)

The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms… Deuteronomy 33:27 (NKJV)

 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.   2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NKJV)

 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you. 1 Peter 1:3-4 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

The Highest Tree

Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed. 1 Peter 2:24 (NKJV)

The tallest tree in the world is said to be Hyperion, a 379.7-foot-tall (115.7 m) redwood tree located in California, USA.  If you’d like to experience such tall trees, you might enjoy a visit to Sequoia National Park where you can see 18 of the 30 largest trees in the world. Though there are many cool facts about redwood and sequoia trees, perhaps the most intriguing is their life span.  Giant redwoods may live up to 2000 years, while giant sequoias may live up to 3000 years!  Imagine that! Some of the very trees you may visit were growing when Jesus walked on this earth!

What is it that attracts us to such tall trees?  Do we always like the biggest and best, the oldest and toughest? Perhaps it is another way of Jesus calling us to Him, through His awesome creation (Romans 1:20). Perhaps it’s because these trees point us to heaven and bring us closer to God.  Or, maybe it’s that our Savior Jesus died on such a tree, the cross of Calvary.

 Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Hebrews 12:2 (NKJV)

Why did Jesus do it? Why did He allow Himself to be beaten and bruised, then nailed to a cross between two thieves?  Why did the Son of the Living God not call a Legion of angels to rescue Him and denounce His tormentors?  Because He loves us. He was the only perfect sacrifice that could die for our sins.  And while on that tree, He still had compassion, saying, “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing.”  (Luke 23:34)

Because of Jesus’ love and sacrifice on that tree, we have God’s forgiveness and promise of eternal life in heaven. Jesus is the only door through which we can enter heaven.  All we have to do is believe. When the sky was dark and the earth quaked and the temple curtain was torn in two from top to bottom, the centurion proclaimed, “Truly this Man was the Son of God!” (Mark 15:39)  Let us do the same.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: As you prepare to celebrate Good Friday and Easter, why not take a walk in a nearby forest or park.  There one can look up at the trees and find the tallest one that points you to heaven, while remembering the highest tree of all, our Savior Jesus’ cross.  Thank you, Jesus, for all You have done, dying for our sins on that tall tree, and making a way for us to be with You in heaven. I believe in You, Jesus!  I love You, Jesus!

Thus says the Lord God: “I will take also one of the highest branches of the high cedar and set it out. I will crop off from the topmost of its young twigs a tender one, and will plant it on a high and prominent mountain. On the mountain height of Israel I will plant it; and it will bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a majestic cedar. Under it will dwell birds of every sort; in the shadow of its branches they will dwell. And all the trees of the field shall know that I, the Lord, have brought down the high tree and exalted the low tree, dried up the green tree and made the dry tree flourish; I, the Lord, have spoken and have done it.” Ezekiel 17:22-24 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

https://www.livescience.com/29144-worlds-largest-tree.html

https://www.tripsavvy.com/redwood-forests-in-california-1478739

http://www.visitsequoia.com/redwoods-and-sequoias.aspx

The Greatest Prayer

 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. John 17:3 (NKJV)

There are so many wonderful prayers in God’s Word, the Bible, but perhaps one of the most moving is the one by Jesus in John 17.  This prayer comes from the depths of our Savior’s heart and soul.  Jesus pours out his heart to His Father as He prepares Himself for His coming crucifixion.  John 17 has three parts: 1) Jesus prays for Himself, 2) Jesus prays for His disciples, and 3) Jesus prays for all believers (you and me!). Jesus shows His love for His Father, His disciples, and for all of us yet to come.

How can we share in Jesus’ prayer in John 17?  Start by reading the chapter and underlining verses God shows you.  Which ones speak to you the most?  Are any verses calling you to action?  Copy these verses in your prayer journal and pray over them with Jesus, asking for His direction.

As you soak up John 17, you will notice there are many elements of prayer, we should follow from Jesus:

  • First, that the Father is glorified (John 17:1,5).
  • Second, that we finish the work God has sent us to do (John 17:4).
  • Third, that we pray for our loved ones, as Jesus prayed for His (John 17:15).
  • Fourth, that believers may be one and filled with God’s love (John 17:21, 26).
  • And fifth, that we go into the world that the world may know Jesus (John 17:18, 23).

Today’s TEA CUPP: How can we accomplish all this?  How about one step at a time? In the days leading up to Palm Sunday, pray that the Father and Son are glorified.  Pray the very Words from John 17:1. Then as you go through the Holy Week between Palm Sunday and Easter, ask God what work He has for you to finish (John 17:4).  On Easter, pray for your loved ones as Jesus prayed for His (John 17:15). Continue to pray over John 17 in the weeks following Easter, lifting up your heart to Jesus. You never know where God will lead you.  My Bible study friend Carol, a regular gal whom God has uniquely prepared, is leaving Montana, USA for a Jesus Film prayer walk in East Africa. Wow!  That’s what prayer can do!

Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You.” John 17:1 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

 

Four Verses for TEA

I love finding all the parts of my TEA CUPP in just one section of the Bible. It’s a refreshing way to pray, using these few verses to pour out my heart to Jesus.  Today’s verses come from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians, the fourth chapter, verses 4-7.  Many of you are familiar with these famous words:

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:4-7 (NKJV)

T for Thanksgiving

…but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving…  Philippians 4:6 (NKJV)

E for Exalting:

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Philippians 4:4 (NKJV)

A for Admitting:

Be anxious for nothing… Philippians 4:6 (NKJV)

 C for Calling:

Let your gentleness be known to all men… Philippians 4:5 (NKJV)

U is for Understanding our story:

and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding Philippians 4:7 (NKJV)

P is for Promises:

...The Lord is at hand. Philippians 4:5 (NKJV)

…will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7 (NKJV)

P is for Petitioning:

…let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: My Bible study leader, Terry, says we should chew on God’s Word as a cow chews her cud, over and over again. This week, chew on Philippians 4:4-7, praying in order of the verses, or in order of the TEA CUPP for variety.  By the end of the week, you may have it memorized and can pray it anywhere!  Be blessed in Philippians, my friend!

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Turn and Live

…“Therefore turn and live!”  Ezekiel 18:32 (NKJV)

One of the toughest parts of My TEA CUPP Prayers might be the letter “A” for Admitting our sins.  It can be hard to admit when we’ve done something wrong, said the wrong words, done the wrong thing, broken one of God’s commandments, and fallen short of the glory of God.  It can be especially hard to even admit we need forgiveness, but we do.  For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).  We’re all in need of the forgiveness that only Jesus can provide.

Yet there is Good News! Though admitting our sins is tough, we are cleansed, our burden is lifted, and we have joy and peace again.  Jesus bore our sins for us on the cross at Calvary so long ago.  When we believe in Him, He washes away all our sins and makes us His child.  Isn’t that Good News?!  So, today, if you’ve been skipping this part of your TEA time with Jesus, I urge you to turn and live!

Turn from your sins, admit them to Jesus, repent and live a new life, walking with Jesus. This sin stuff is not new, it’s as old as Adam and Eve and the serpent.  God’s people, the Israelites, fell into it often. God’s Old Testament prophets warned the people, as did Ezekiel:

Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways,” says the Lord God. “Repent, and turn from all your transgressions, so that iniquity will not be your ruin. Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies,” says the Lord God. “Therefore turn and live!” Ezekiel 18:30-32 (NKJV)

Are you ready to turn and live?  How can you do it?  James tells us so well in his New Testament book.  James says…

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. James 4:7-10 (NKJV)

Did you hear James’ points? 1) Submit to God. 2) Resist the devil. 3) Draw near to God (having TEA with Jesus each day is a great way to do this!). 4) Cleanse and purify your heart (by admitting your sins, weeping, and asking Jesus’ forgiveness). 5) Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord.

And did you see Jame’s promises?  1) The devil will flee from you. 2) God will draw near to you. 3) And God will lift you up!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Turn and Live!  Dearest TEA CUPP Friend, whether you are a new believer, old believer, or a seeker, there is always something to admit to Jesus.  Give Jesus that last sin you’ve been hanging onto, let Him wash it away and give you a new clean heart.  Turn and Live!

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. Romans 8:1 (NKJV)

For I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies,” says the Lord God. “Therefore turn and live!”  Ezekiel 18:32 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

My Lazarus Tea

My Tea Cupp Prayers

John 11 tells the miraculous story of Jesus raising His friend Lazarus from the grave. Lazarus had been dead for four days.  Before his death Lazarus was sick, but Jesus didn’t come.  Why did Jesus wait to visit? — So that God would be glorified!  In this amazing account, John describes how Jesus was moved to tears, yet continued His ministry, comforted the sisters, and raised Lazarus to life.  So many good verses are found in this passage that we can use in our prayers.  I call this, “My Lazarus Tea.”

T for Thanksgiving
And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me.” John 11:41(NKJV)

E for Exalting:

When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” John 11:4 (NKJV)

A for Admitting:

But if one walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him. John 11:10 (NKJV)

 C for Calling:

Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”  John 11:40 (NKJV)

U is for Understanding our story:

She said to Him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.” John 11:27 (NKJV)

P is for Promises:

Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” John 11:23 (NKJV)

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. John 11:25 (NKJV)

P is for Petitioning:

“Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.” John 11:3 (NKJV)

“Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You.” John 11:21-22 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read John 11 and the miraculous story of Jesus raising His friend Lazarus from the grave. Underline your favorite verses and use them as conversation starters as you pray with Jesus today.  You might use one of the verses above, or perhaps the Bible’s shortest verse, “Jesus wept.” (John 11:35) Then tell Jesus about something that’s making you very sad right now.  Let Him comfort you with His promises.

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Someone is Praying for You!

Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. Hebrews 7:25 (NKJV)

Someone is praying for you, my friend!  Someone is praying for you!  I promise you that right now, someone is really and truly praying for you.

I know what you are thinking, “Not me, why would anyone pray for me? You are mistaken.”  But I promise you, it is true, someone is truly praying for you.

Now, I can’t tell you all the people who are praying for you, because that is a surprise.  It could be an aunt, a grandpa, a grandchild, a neighbor, a person at the grocery store, or someone who goes by your house everyday.  You could be totally oblivious to these prayers as Job’s first children were (Job 1:5), but the prayers are still happening. And I can tell you Two who are praying for you:

1) Jesus is praying for you!  Can you believe it?  It is true!  Romans 8:34 promises us that Jesus is sitting at the right hand of God, making intercession for us.

It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Romans 8:34 (NKJV)

Wow, isn’t that something?! Jesus, the Son of God, the Messiah, the Savior of the world, is praying for you!  How does that make you feel?  This question was asked at a Bible study I attend and the ladies had some wonderful answers:  “Mind-boggling, blessed, He cares that much for me, nothing is impossible, He knows what I need before I ask, He hears us, we are just specks in eternity, specks in the universe, yet He hears us!”  And how does it make me feel?  I wrote that day, “O Jesus, thank You!  To think I sit having TEA with You every morning and You take my requests to the Father!  Thank You, dearest Jesus!”

2) Who else is praying for you?  The Holy Spirit is praying for you!  Even if we mess up our prayers and get it all wrong, the Holy Spirit is there, translating what our hearts really meant to the Father.  Isn’t that good news?!  You don’t have to pray just the “right” prayer.  The Holy Spirit will take care of making it “just right” for God.  The Spirit is praying for you!

 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Romans 8:26 (NKJV)

A recent example of this for me was when my Daddy was dying.  I definitely didn’t have it all together as my voice cracked in tears.  I was trying to pray the Lord’s Prayer over the phone with Daddy, as my sister held the phone to his ear.  Somewhere around “debtors” or “temptations” I messed up, not remembering which version I was on…yet I know the Holy Spirit interceded at that very moment and heard our prayers and took my dear Daddy to heaven.  For as soon as we ended the call, my sister texted, “He’s gone.”  And there I sat on the sofa between my two boys, crying tears of sadness and joy, that God let us all be together in my Daddy’s final moments.

Today’s TEA CUPP: Jesus and the Holy Spirit are both praying for you, taking your requests to the Father.  Rest in this amazing promise today!  Then pray with confidence, knowing God is on your side. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

My Love TEA

Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:8 (NKJV)

It’s Valentine’s DayWhat a perfect day for a CUPP of Love TEA!  I know, sometimes we might not feel very lovable, when we are grumpy and everything is going wrong.  But those times are when we need His love the most, to wash away our sins and restore us with His Holy Spirit. Then we are able to share His love with others.  Please heat the kettle and put a heaping spoonful of Love in your CUPP today!

Here are some  Love Bible verses to get you started in your prayer time with Jesus this Valentine’s Day and the whole month of February…

T for Thanksgiving

I love the Lord, because He has heard
My voice and my supplications. Psalm 116:1 (NKJV)

E for Exalting:

 I will love You, O Lord, my strength. Psalm 18:1 (NKJV)

Oh, how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day. Psalm 119:97 (NKJV)

Therefore I love Your commandments
More than gold, yes, than fine gold! Psalm 119:27 (NKJV)

A for Admitting:

No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Luke 16:13 (NKJV)

And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. John 3:19 (NKJV)

 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 (NKJV)

 C for Calling:

 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.  Matthew 5:44 (NKJV)

And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.  And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31 (NKJV)

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. John 13:34 (NKJV)

Let all that you do be done with love. 1 Corinthians 16:14 (NKJV)

And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. Ephesians 5:2 (NKJV)

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 1 John 4:7 (NKJV)

U is for Understanding our story:

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 1 John 4:10 (NKJV)

Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. John 15:13 (NKJV)

Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love. Ephesians 1:4 (NKJV)

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! 1 John 3:1 (NKJV)

P is for Promises:

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16 (NKJV)

For the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God. John 16:27 (NKJV)

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39 (NKJV)

P is for Petitioning:

Consider how I love Your precepts;
Revive me, O Lord, according to Your lovingkindness. Psalm 119:159 (NKJV)

My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen. 1 Corinthians 16:24 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: God loves you, my TEA CUPP friend!  He loves you so much that He died for you and all the world.  Soak yourself in His amazing Word and love today.

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Valentine Cookies – GF

img_6224  Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.  John 15:13 (NKJV)

We love Valentine’s Day and we love cookies!  So, we had to make some gluten-free, dairy-free heart cookies again this year.  I first ran this recipe four years ago. My two-year old taste-tester Joel said they were delicious.  Now my six-year old Joel rolls out the dough and cuts the hearts for me!

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

Ingredients:
1 cup coconut oil, softened
1 cup Earth Balance butter, softened
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla
5 cups gluten-free flour
2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt

Cream coconut oil, Earth Balance butter and sugar together.  Add eggs and vanilla, mixing well.  In another bowl combine the dry ingredients: flour, xanthan gum, and salt  (I used 3 1/2 cups brown rice flour and 1 1/2 cups tapioca flour).   Add dry ingredients to coconut oil mixture, stirring until it is well combined.  Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let chill in the refrigerator 4 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Roll out dough on your kitchen counter until it is 1/4 inch thickness. It might seem crumbly, but you can work with it to make it stick together. Use cookie cutters to cut out hearts or your favorite shapes.  Place cookies on parchment paper on a baking sheet.  Bake 12 minutes, then cool on cooling racks.  Top with your favorite icing (I use a mixture of 2 T. coconut oil, powder sugar, almond milk, a dash of vanilla and food coloring, adding sugar and almond milk until it is just the amount and consistency I need).

Now you get to eat your heart cookies and share them with your family and friends!  Spread around some love today :-)!

p.s. This recipe makes great Christmas cookies, too!

img_6225For the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God. John 16:27 (NKJV)

New King James Version (NKJV)The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.