Saturday, November 24, 2018

Keeping Yourself Healthy for the Holidays!

In our daily lives, I have found a few topics to be important. These topics have become my focal points in writing. When you become better in these areas, your life changes drastically for the better. The areas are Faith, Family, Fitness, and Food.

Faith determines our outlook on life. Faith in God gives us peace; faith in His Son gives us eternal security. Hebrews 11:3 tells us that "by faith we understand that the Universe was formed at God's command." When we have faith in God's Word, we gain direction, wisdom, and understanding. Family and fitness are the other topics, but in this blog I want to focus on food.

Just like faith, food has the power to impact every area of our lives. It has the power to give us strength and energy to enjoy our families. It has the power to make us ill, so that we cannot focus even on growing our faith. Food can help us to be excited about life, or it can take all the excitement right from us. 

It is fascinating to know that God values what we eat. He put some of the best foods in the Promised Land for His people. It was the land of milk and honey, but it also had pomegranates, olive oil, and much more. Genesis 1:29 tells us that God gave us "every seed-bearing plant...and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food." God made food that would be healing to the body and strength to our bones.

In our imperfect world, we come across a lot of food that is not healing to the body. The Daniel Plan tells us that MSG's, hidden in foods, cause hunger, headaches, allergies, and damage to the gut (2013). They triple your insulin production and lead to the storage of belly fat. Visceral fat sends toxins to your organs and stress hormones to the brain. 

Food can cause inflammation, which can lead to dementia, diabetes, cancer, and heart attack. Dr. Mehmet Oz in Food Can Fix It tells us that inflammation even sends signals to the brain to bring about feelings of depression (2017). 

Stress and depression is not just all in our head; it is actually real, and it can be caused by food! I experienced exactly what both of these doctors talk about in the books I mention above. Inflammation led to stress and feelings of depression. That's when I was introduced to natural healing through natural foods and supplements. A doctor who practiced holistic medicine saw that the changes in people's health were far more promising. 

I took a multivitamin, fish oil, and a probiotic, which is what The Daniel Plan teaches. Without exercise, weight-loss and feeling great seemed effortless, while eating natural foods. Dr. Oz promotes omega-3's to decrease inflammation and help the body adapt to stress (2017). He encourages phytonutrients to help detoxify the body and fight disease. He teaches that he could heal with steel, but long term health and vitality in life comes from nutrition. 

I hope you check out my website so that you, too, can get supplements that are made from beginning to end on an organic farm. Visit and the Nutrilite US Facebook page to keep yourself healthy for your family this holiday season and many more to come. 

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng


Oz, Dr. Mehmet. (2017). Food Can Fix It. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Warren, Rick, Amen, Daniel, & Hyman, Mark. (2013). The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

God Warns Against A King

The story of Samuel is a great one. Samuel grows up serving the Lord, and he is a strong figure in Scripture. In 1 Samuel 8, the people of Israel came to him, asking him for a king. They wanted someone to rule over them, someone to have the power to make things happen. What they didn't realize is that a king might not be on their side. A king might put his own interests first, and while he could lead an army, he could also take all of their rights away.

Samuel warned the people, "Here's what the king who rules over you will expect to be done for him. He will take your sons. He'll make them serve with his chariots and horses...others will have to plow his fields...He will take away your best fields and vineyards and olive groves...He'll take your best cattle and donkeys." Samuel tells them, "You yourselves will become his slaves (1 Samuel 8:10-17)."

The people insisted, "No! We want a king to rule over us. Then, we'll be like all the other nations..He'll go out at the head of our armies and fight our battles (1 Samuel 8:19-20)."

What is interesting is that God had already established the 10 Commandments, which would allow the people to honor God and live in a civilized society. God told them, through Moses to have no other gods, to not commit adultery, to not bear false witness, to not murder, to honor their father and mother, to not steal. In doing so, they could certainly have a civilized society without a king.

You might ask, who then would be in charge of protecting the country? God had already led the people out of slavery, protected them in the desert, defeated powerful armies. And, he did all of that without a king. He chose people, who honored Him, including Moses, Joshua, and Gideon to do what seemed impossible. But, still the people wanted a king.

Saul was a tall, handsome man. He was a leader who, the people thought, could propagate sin. They wanted to worship false gods; they wanted to disobey God. At least a king could be on their side.

People do the same in our day. They elect leaders to propagate sin and promote acts that are directly contrary to Scripture, including murder and homosexuality. They celebrate taking God's Word out of businesses and institutions. The people in 1 Samuel were all about propagating sin through a strong leader.

Fortunately, we can see a country succeed when the leadership recognizes God as the King. Moses  and Joshua were imperfect people, but their strength and goodness came from trusting in God. They defeated powerful armies and led the people towards the Promised Land because of their faithfulness.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

A Bold Gentleman: A Heart-Warming Story from Scripture

It is difficult to read the story of Ruth and Boaz and not be compelled to talk about it. It is an incredible story in the Bible, that is so encouraging and applicable to our day.

The book of Ruth is perfectly placed (of course) right after the book of Judges. We can read about so much evil  in the first seven books of the Old Testament, as people turn away from God, time and time again. Then, comes the story of Ruth and Boaz. Reading this story is like taking in a breath of fresh air, when God uses faithful people to turn unfortunate circumstances into times to be thankful.

In the beginning of the book of Ruth, Naomi and Ruth both lost loved ones. Naomi lost her husband and two sons, and Ruth lost her husband, who was one of Naomi's sons. It was tough. Ruth chose to stick by her mother-in-law's side, and they traveled to Bethlehem.

Ruth and Boaz were in the city of David, and the city where Christ would be born. Unexpectedly, the two of them met, when Ruth showed up at Boaz's field to pick grain.

Boaz was the owner of the field and gladly allowed Ruth to work for him. He had heard about her kindness to Naomi, and he showed her much kindness in return. Boaz told the other workers not to harm her. In fact, he told them to make sure she was well taken care of. Boaz told Ruth, "Pick up the grain that is left. I've told the men not to bother you. When you are thirsty, go and get a drink. Take water from the jars the men have filled."

Boaz was not back-biting or rude to those around him. He was bold and went out of his way to be kind. He cared for Ruth, and treated her like family. He eventually took her to be his wife.

There is so much to this story to appreciate!

1. Boaz wanted what was best for Ruth. He told her from the day they met, "May the Lord be with you." He showed sincerity in his words and actions. He was a gentleman.

2. Ruth recognized his kindness. She said, "You have made me feel safe. You have spoken kindly to me. And I'm not even as important as one of your servants!" She was attentive to his kindness. 

3. We can be thankful for the bad and good examples that God has for us to read in Scripture. We can see with certainty that we do not want the destruction that comes with those who choose evil. And, we can rest assured that those who turn towards Him can expect good things to come (Romans 8:28).

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Why Do We Need the Bible?

This morning I was thinking about encouraging people to read the Bible, and a question came to my mind: Why do we read the Bible? Why does it matter? After all, we are born with the knowledge of good and evil and we seem to just know right from wrong as we assimilate ourselves into the culture. We have a society and laws based mostly upon Christian principles, so those teachings we accept at a young age. In addition, we can learn morals from our parents, our teachers, and our coaches when we are young. And as we grow, we learn from our peers and mentors. So why do we need the Bible?

As I work my way from Genesis through Revelation, I see history recorded and principles laid out for living a good life. I see a book full of advice, and I know that without following the advice and instructions in the Bible, we can expect emptiness and destruction. Proverbs 1:32 tells us that "foolish people will be destroyed by being satisfied with the way they live." We can destroy our lives if we are not following God's Word. We need encouragement and direction every day. 

I appreciate the wisdom in Proverbs 3:7-8: "...Have respect for the Lord and avoid evil. That will bring health to your body. It will make your bones strong." In a world with so many options, I hope you remember...

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding.
In all your ways obey him. Then he will make your paths smooth and straight."
(Proverbs 3:5-6)

Thursday, October 11, 2018

My Epiphany

As I was doing the dishes this evening, a striking realization came to my mind. That tends to happen a lot when I am keeping busy. It seems that as my body works hard at a task, my mind works even harder. This evening, I was thinking about what my role is in life. I was thinking about all the people I look up to and all the good that they do. I realized that I could just do a little bit of all these good deeds and implement them into my life. While it was a great idea, I realized that God places before me what he has for me to do. Opportunities come when God ordains for it to happen.

And, like a flash of lighting, the pressure was gone. I cannot do everything, but I can be the best wife to Bill and mother to my two boys that I can. In doing so, I can learn to be a great cook, home decorator, cheerleader, financial planner, teacher, and worker. I can focus because I know where my focus is to be. I am a child of God, and can be at peace with the duties that God has set before me.

I pray you do that same. For those of you with kids, I encourage you to get my book Wisdom for the Journey in Parenting: 50 Simple Tips for Christian Moms and Dads, so that you can take the steps to be the best parent that you can be. In my book, you can learn to measure your work by God standards, instead of that of all the people around you. The profit from sales now through December 2018 for  will go to the Cleveland Pregnancy Center.

Thanks for reading!
~Melissa Seng

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Top Five Food Finds for the Fall

As the weather starts to cool, we will be getting in the spirit of Fall. Fall, often times, means football, food, and family time. Here are some healthy ways to enjoy food this Fall...

5. Banza pasta - This pasta is made completely from chickpeas! It looks and tastes just like pasta. And for people, like myself, with sensitive stomachs, you will even feel great, too.

4. Simple Truth Vegetable Chips - They are crispy, salty, and delicious.

3. Simple Truth Vegetable Broth - For people that just want nothing to do with meat, this is a great way to make soup! Instead of using chicken stock, I love this option!

2. Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate with Hazelnuts - What better way to eat hazelnuts than in chocolate!?

1. Bigelow Orange Spice Tea - It's fruity with just the right amount of spice.

It is always a pleasure to share my newest food finds, as I know that people are always looking for healthy options for the family.

Thanks for reading!
~Melissa Seng

Saturday, June 30, 2018

America, The Land of the Free!

Happy 4th of July Weekend! It's a great time to celebrate and be thankful to be an American. We live in the greatest country in the world. We live in a nation where we can pursue what can only be called the American Dream.

What is the American Dream? James Truslow Adams popularized the term in 1931 when he said that "life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement." Life can be better, richer, and fuller for all of us.

I want to address two questions that might come to mind. First, what does the American Dream look like? Second, is it a Christian pursuit?

First, what does it look like? It's not having what you want in life; it's earning what you want in life. If you want a small house on a farm, with some animals and a barn, it's having just that. If you want a big house with a swimming pool, and a sports car, and the ability to send your 5 kids to a private school for their education, its having just that. If it's becoming a doctor and going on vacation twice a year with your family, it's earning that degree and doing just that. If it's going on mission trips to help others or giving to one of the many non-profit organizations that do so much good for people all over the world, you are able to do that.

Second, is the American Dream a Christian pursuit? When we try to give our "humble opinion," we try to tell ourselves that we should not have anything good in this life and that only God's plan is of any significance. But, you are part of God's plan, and you can do many good things when you are in line with Him. God created us and said, "It is very good (Genesis 1:31)." He gave us the grass of the fields to enjoy, the animals to appreciate, and the food that was good to eat. And he gave family to reflect all that is good in Him. The American Dream can be a way of recognizing Jeremiah 29:11: "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'"

God has blessed us is by creating a nation where the people are "One nation under God," and where we see blessings that come through faithfulness to His Word, in the form of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

I love Neil Diamonds song America. He sings about our ancestors coming to this great country, "without a home, but not without a star." I think about that star as hope in Jesus and direction from God, and I am thankful for our ancestors dream and pursuit to come to America.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Cheering Your Husband On This Father's Day

Father's Day is a few days away. It's the day that many fathers feel like they are just not good enough. Well, I want to encourage you in this blog to appreciate fathers a little more this Father's Day.

To the Fathers:

Fathers, you are amazing! Just being there for your kids is huge for helping them grow with confidence, security, and good character. Dr. James Dobson says in his book Bringing Up Boys that fathers being absent is the biggest contributor to criminal behavior in kids as they enter adulthood (2001). So, if you are present and spending time with your kids, you can take the pressure off of yourself. You are already making a positive impact on your family.

Dr. Dobson says that fathers need to be the leader, protector, and provider. As you, fathers, fill these roles you are giving your family the stability and structure that God desires for us to have.

To the Wives:

As women, we tend to think that we have to be eveything to everyone. When we are at home with our family, we just want to go out and change the world. When we are making a difference in the world, all we want to do is go home and be with our family. It's a tough battle. But, often times we just need to be the cheerleaders. We cannot be everything to everyone. Instead, we can provide encouragement to the ones closest to us, so that together, we can make a difference.

Keeping that in mind, we need to know that our husband can be a great influence in the world. Strong, courageous, and Godly men can put the world more at peace. We need to encourage them and be grateful for their strength in character and integrity. We need to know that they can have influence and we, too, can have influence. We impart wisdom, discipline, love, and care to our children. Those gifts will shine through them to thousands of people they will meet in their lifetime.

To All:

We aren't to compete with, but to compliment one another. As John C. Maxwell says on Minute with Maxwell, "It's a fact that we can do more together, but it's also a fact that we can be more together."

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Dobson, James C. (2001). Bringing Up Boys. Tyndale House Publishers. 

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Reading Through the Bible in a Year: An Unfathomable Achievement

I write this blog because I just stated reading a new NIV Women's Bible that my husband purchased for me. I was curious how long it would take me to read it if I actually started on page 1 and read straight through the entire Bible. My attention span is not very long, so most books I actually read from the back and go forward. I know it's strange, but it tremendously enhances my confidence that I can finish the book because I already reached the end. (I had to change my strategy in editing my husband's new book series because it's fictional.)

Anyways, I took 1400 pages, which is the length of my new Bible, and divided it by 365 days. I realized that to finish the Bible start to finish in a year, I would only have to read 4 pages a day! And that's not even full pages. That's one side of a page!

I tell you this to encourage you that reading the Bible in a year is not some unfathomable achievement. It's something that anyone can do, anyone that can read. I know our mind is the biggest mountain that stands in the way of any achievement. So, I hope that you remember, it's just 4 pages a day (which may vary slightly) and you are on your way through the entire written copy of the Word of God.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Saturday, May 19, 2018

The Gift of Motherhood Far Outlives Mother's Day

Mother's Day is about catering to Moms. The family may take over the housework, cook dinner, and buy a gift for Mom to make her feel special. But, most often, what means most is the family being together: it's the greatest gift of all on Mother's Day. As Psalm 127:3 tells us, children are a blessing from the Lord.

As that special day has past only one week ago, I encourage Moms to recognize that every day matters. Every morning is a new opportunity to enjoy our kids and our spouse. Every morning is a new day to teach them, to read to them, to instill in them valuable lessons that can benefit them for their entire lives. It's a new day to show them patience, kindness, and compassion. Every day we are valuable to our kids.

I want to encourage Moms not to give in to the culture that tells us that money matters more than our kids. Our kids will not be kids forever. God gives us the gift of raising our kids only for a short time, and we need to remind ourselves to put our family first. Raising kids looks different in every home; however, sometimes we need to regroup and redirect our steps. As a mother, our roles can become complicated. But, I encourage you to always remember that motherhood is a gift because you mean the world to your kids.

My husband told me about a video he saw on Facebook  of a bee becoming attached to a person. Apparently the bee had lost its wings and was comforted in spending time on this person's hand. The bee would lay there and just be content. My husband even told me that it was "cute." That's a bee. How much more do our kids need us?

I pray you realize every day that you mean the world to your family.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Friday, May 18, 2018

School Shootings: How Do We Protect Our Children?

I start off by saying that today we have seen another school shooting in our great country. These events are heart-breaking, and the Bible tells us that evil is real. In Ephesians 6:12, we read "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against...the powers of this dark world and against the Spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Our war is not against one another, it's not against the opposing side in politics; it's against evil. So, we need to work together, and work alongside the only force to oppose evil, that is the power of God. Psalm 34:13-15 tells us "Turn away from evil, and do good. Look for peace and go after it. The Lord looks with favor on those who are godly. His ears are open to their cry." We need to fight evil with good. And, we do so by working together to take care of our kids in school.

After seeing so many of these instances in the news, I wanted to write a blog with some ideas that could help. I am sure many of you have already thought to do these things, but I figured if we all reinforce change, we can see it happen.

1. Why not metal detectors in every school? They already exist in some schools, but why not make it a goal for them to be in every school. Many not well-to-do school districts have them, so I would guess that more well-to-do school districts could afford them, too.

2. Why not a police officer and police dog at every school? Recently, on Wednesday, an officer in Illinois was considered a hero for saving countless lives in what could have been a deadly school shooting. Now, two days later, a deadly school shooting happened in Texas, only weeks after a previous deadly school shooting in Florida. Explosives were found outside the school.

3. We need to keep in mind that drugs are illegal; however, so many young people fall trap to them. Making things (explosives, drugs, guns, knives) illegal does not do the trick.

I am thankful for so many police officers that protect the lives of people in this country every day, and I think it would be an honor for them to protect so many young people in our schools. I pray we consider these changes and make it happen.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Billy Graham and Franklin Graham:Why Have Their Ministries Looked So Different?

When we hear of Billy Graham, we think of a man who was kind, compassionate, wise, passionate to teach God's Word, and loyal to his family. We think of someone who was hard-working and devoted to living a life with an eternal perspective, a man who has impacted all of us in one way or another.

Billy Graham was definitely a great example, and his legacy continues. Since his passing, his son has received honor and recognition for his father's great work; however, Franklin Graham's ministry has been completely overlooked.

In response, I decided to check out the website to learn what has been left unsaid. Franklin Graham has been the President of Samaritan's Purse since 1978. He runs Operation Christmas Child and responds to people - after earthquakes, wars, hurricanes, famines, floods, etc. - to take care of them in their most desperate times. His mission is to care for the physical and spiritual needs of individuals. In September 2017, after Hurricane Irma and Maria, his organization brought tarps, blankets, water filters, and 1500 generators (and each one had enough power to charge a cell phone, refrigerator, and provide lighting!). The Rapid Response Team, which is a part of Samaritan's Purse, has responded to over 20 countries on six continents since 2001.

Billy Graham and Franklin Graham's ministries look completely different. Billy responded to his call to speak at stadiums around the world and to minister to presidents during some of the most challenging moments in their lives. He taught in a world where people knew that they needed to hear the Gospel, and they accepted the Bible as truth.

Franklin Graham cares for people in a world that does not know the truth. They did not grow up hearing the Bible taught in their homes, and many do not believe that there is a source of truth. His ministry looks different from that of his father's. It seems as though God sends some people to be encouragers to the nations and others to rebuke those who are falling away. Billy Graham was an encourager, and Franklin Graham, at times, rebukes the nation that is falling away. He posted an article recently on Facebook that stated that $543,700,000 from tax payer dollars in 2016-2017 went to Planned Parenthood. During that time, they performed 321,384 abortions. That is a nation that needs to find truth.

It takes one person with a vision and a mission for doing God's work and many caring people to carry it out to make a difference. I believe that Billy Graham's legacy and Franklin Graham's ministry can help us to have hope and help out this hurting world.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Children Repeat More Than You Might Think

Have you ever noticed that children repeat everything you say? Perhaps, you are having a stressful morning and remark, "It's a terrible day." They repeat it and believe it. Another morning you see the sun come up and you say, "It's a great day." They repeat it and believe it. Another day you sing, "This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it." Finally, they gain understanding. If you notice, in every case, it is not just the words; it's the attitude and perspective that adds to the impact we make on our children. They learn and grow from our example.

Jaden asked me this morning to sing him the Ghostbusters song. I smiled and sang it to him the best that I could. He listening intently, smiled and said, "That's right!" He was overjoyed. "That's what the teacher at church said!" he remarked. I thought, "They couldn't have been talking about Ghostbusters at church on Sunday." Then, after some clarification, I realized that it was not the case, but it was the simple words of affirmation and the positive attitude from a Sunday School teacher that he was repeating. The simple phrase "That's right!" combined with an attitude of approval, brought joy to him days later. That's the kind of impact we can have on our children, and I am thankful for that.

What kinds of words or phrases do you want your kids repeating? I like to hear "That's a great idea!" or "Let's go outside!" What kinds of actions do you want your kids to repeat? Doing yard work, cooking, or picking up toys might be few of them. What kinds of attitudes do you want to be reflected in them? A spirit of thanksgiving, a lack of complaining. If you display such characteristics, your kids will follow in your example. Lastly, what about perspective? What matters to you? How important is family? How important is being out and appreciating God's creation?  How important is it to learn, and have fun, and enjoy one another? These perspectives will be reflected in your children.

I pray that you realize the impact you are making, and choose to make it a good one every day.

Thanks for reading!

Melissa Seng

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Every Mile Gets Easier

Do you ever set goals for yourself and find that they are difficult to fulfill? I want to encourage you today with, possibly, some uncommon wisdom. I want to let you know that in any area of excellence you are pursuing, every mile gets easier. Perhaps, you want to write a book, or raise a family, or get into better physical shape, or understand the Scriptures, I want to tell you that every mile gets easier. In this blog, I use the analogy of running, but I encourage you to think about whatever goals you are pursuing as you read.

Life can be tough. In parenting, the first year, you may look like a train wreck. You want to have it all together, but your focus is completely on a little child who needs you. Watching out for them night and day, changing dirty diapers, entertaining them, and feeding them will fill your schedule. Toys, baby food, clothes, strollers, blankets, and diapers fill your house and car. That first milestone as a parent is hard. My mom always told me, "It gets easier." With two boys grown out of the baby stage, I can definitely say she's right. They are stronger, more independent, smarter, adapting to their surroundings. They are fun, full of energy, and have given me more than I have given them that first year of parenting. They do not do laundry, dishes, and cooking yet; but, that day will come.

Getting past that first mile in any endeavor makes all the difference. I watch professional athletes dunk the ball, or throw a pass, or complete a tackle with ease. And I can't help but realize that they make it look easy. That's part of the fun in watching sports. They have so much skill that the game becomes enjoyable. The same is true in parenting, and the same is true in life.

When we are working towards a goal, the most difficult part is the decision to start. It involves fear and self-doubt. It takes courage in recognizing that we need to be farther than we currently are in life. And it takes wisdom and positivity in learning from past mistakes. The decision to move forward takes a lot of emotional strength and effort.

People like to tell us that pursing a goal only gets more difficult as you go forward. I believe it's just the opposite. In exercise, the most difficult decision is getting out the door and getting those feet moving. Once you do, you get stronger, more energized, more confident, and more certain that you are doing the right thing. You see more clearly; you see that you can do this. You still experience the same temptations to give up, but you have come farther and can be encouraged to move forward with strength and character.

My favorite part about running is walking (outdoors!). My second favorite part is stretching. It is in those phases of my workout that I can tell how far I have come, how much stronger I feel, and how much more relaxed I am about the day. When we reach new levels and begin to achieve our goals, we can start to clear our mind of all of the negativity and stress that once had a place there.

Rich DeVoss once said, "Don't wait for things to happen. Make things happen. And when you make things happen, you change the condition." In running, Mile 1, I want to cry; mile 2, I start to see some progress; mile 3, I realize I have stuck with it long enough to see some results. From there, I just have to keep moving forward, as long as the investment is worth the rewards.

Running takes 100% effort for 100% results. It takes everything you've got. And, everything you put into it - the energy, enthusiasm, strength, time, money - you get back in one way or another. What in your life can you invest in at 100%? When our work is pleasing to God, he rewards us greatly because he has created us to do good works.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Best Products for Your Health and Your Family

In taking care of our children, we know that we must take care of ourselves first. If we are not feeling well, we will not be at the top of our game in parenting. If our energy is lacking, our patience may be non-existent. If we are in pain, our temperament may be less than desirable. But, when we are healthy and well, we can be energized to teach and to be a good example to our kids.

When you have been under the weather, what has been your greatest desires? Probably to do absolutely nothing, except rest. On the contrary, when you are feeling great, what are your intentions? To have a great day with your family and to enjoy time to be refreshed and renewed.

Well, for these reasons, I want to give you a few tips that can help you to feel great...

*1.)Consider taking a multivitamin. Nutrilite created the first multivitamin on an organic farm, where no pesticides or chemicals get into the food. Avocado, asparagus, green tea, rosemary, alfalfa, tumeric, elderberry, blueberry, quercetin, spinach, and lycopene are just a few of the ingredients in the Nutrilite supplements. Even if you eat a well-balanced diet, it is not likely that you take in these foods every day. Also, consider getting a multivitamin for your kids, as well. If the product is NSF certified, that means that what is listed on the bottle is actually what is in the product. These products are NSF certified and are at

*2.)Limit sugary beverages. The dentist's advice on how to help prevent cavities is always to avoid sugary beverages. At I offer 1.)Twist Tubes to put in your water and 2.) XS (sugar free) energy drinks, filled with vitamins and with a great taste. The Twist Tubes contain pomegranate and acerola cherry concentrate.

*3.)Replace a meal with a shake. You can pick from Strawberry, Vanilla, and Chocolate Bodykey Meal Replacement Shakes. Protein, vitamins, and calcium all in one meal! You just mix it with water or blend it with your favorite recipe. I enjoy using almond milk, fruit, and honey.

You can look at other options to better your health at

I want to leave you with this thought. How can we help out other people if we are always trying to help out ourselves? And what if we made that extra effort to care for ourselves, so we can do a better job caring for one another?

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Three Steps to Getting Your Kids to Listen

I recently wrote a blog on "How to Use the 'I'm Going to Count to Three' Rule in Parenting." The blog was all about discipline, and getting your children to listen when they give you push-back.

Today, I want to tell you about how to get your children to listen without giving you push-back. It's a proactive approach, and a way of instructing and leading them to obedience. We always have to be one step ahead of our children, and here's how to do it.

It needs to be a three-step process. But, before I explain it, think about this. How often are you telling your children to do something during the day? How often do they respond with a lack of excitement? Does that make the tasks drag on, de-energizing you and the entire family? What if there was a different approach that would be a relief to you and a joy to your family?

The process is a way for effective communication. It's telling your children your expectations in advance, and laying out the rewards. It's letting them decide to listen for the benefit of everyone. We, as parents, have a lot of responsibilities, and we can use this process to work as a team.

The 3 step process is formed by you,  but here is how to do it. Think about your busiest times of your day, when you really need your kids to behave -- possibly the morning, the evening, and whenever you go out in public. In each of these times, come up with 3 steps for accomplishing your tasks.

An example (for the evening) could be...

1. Pick up 
2. Get cleaned up 
3. Snacks and have some fun! 

As you use the process, here are some tips to remember...
*Repeat the process.
*Make your children repeat it back to you.
*Remind them what step you are on as you go.
*Remember to reward them with step #3.

This approach can help your kids to stay focused, and it can help you to stay productive even on the stressful days. Your attitude towards your family will naturally transform from pushy to positive and proactive.

As Christians, our lives are moving in a positive direction, in an upward spiral, as Pastor Dave Cass described it. So we can have joy in all we do before we even step into God's eternal Kingdom.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

What Can a Marriage Do for a Broken World?

Walking into church on Sunday mornings, it's always encouraging to see married couples sitting together. Marriage is a great example of God's love, and it's exactly what the world needs.

In marriage, we can love our kids, our gifts from God. We can accomplish great things, which we cannot accomplish on our  own. We can encourage one another when life gets tough, and we can celebrate when times are good.

Marriage can help mold people to becoming all that God created them to be. Most people never see your potential, your gifts, or your interests. But, your spouse does. And when you are cheering one another on, the two of you can make a great team.

There is strength in a team. A winning team can be inspirational. But, a winning team must realize that they need one another. They, also, need to listen to the coach, so that they can continue to work together. Marriage can put you on the winning team.

Of course we all want to be on the winning team, but how does marriage put us on that track? And why is marriage so important?

Family is the foundation of our lives. If you think logically, you realize, we all have to go home at the end of the day. We all need a roof over our head, and food to eat. We all have work to do to take care of ourselves. And God chose to give us a helpmate for all that we do.

Sometimes we start to believe that we don't need a team, that we don't need one another. But, think about our children. They are molded by their environments. They, too, have to go home at the end of the day. And they need their family to be the foundation of their lives. As Mother Teresa said, "Love begins at home." The love that our kids know, is the love that we share. That is what they will take everywhere they go. And, that is where change begins in our broken world.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Great Bible Verses to Memorize with Your Kids!

Children are quick to learn many challenging tasks, like walking, talking, eating, and swinging a baseball bat. They are quick to understand and to respond to this complex world we live in. And, what we teach them shapes their way of thinking and living.

Our brain is a powerful tool. It helps us to breathe, digest food, walk, and carry on a conversation. The brain, also, allows us to make connections with messages we receive so we can interpret the world around us. The more constructive messages we receive from the Word of God, the more we can be guided in the right direction.

As our children are young, we can use Scripture to teach them and to guide them. Taking time to memorize Scripture will allow God's words to stay with them in all that they do. I have chosen verses that can be great for teaching and encouraging our children, and they are ones that will stay with them all the days of their life.

I encourage you to take your calendar and write one verse at the top of the page for each month. Recite it daily with your kids. Once a week go back and review verses from the previous months. You will be amazed how much Scripture your child has remembered. I, also, encourage you to say these to a fun tune, or in a fun way, so that your kids enjoy learning wisdom from the Bible.

Here is a verse for every month of the year (plus 2 bonus Scriptures!)...

Psalm 86:11 "Lord, teach me how you want me to live. Do this so that I will depend on you (NIRV)."

Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding. In all your ways obey him. And he will make your paths smooth and straight (NIRV)."

Romans 10:9 "Confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe it in your heart that God raised him from the dead and you will be saved (NIV)."

2 Corinthians 7:1 "Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God (NIV)."

John 3:17 "God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him (NIV)."

Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (NIV)."

Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose (NIV)."

Isaiah 40:30-31 "Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint (NIV)."

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the earth (NIV)."

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 "Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus (NIV)."

Mark 12:30-31 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, with all your strength...Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these (NIV)."

Philippians 2:14-15 "Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure children of God without fault in a wicked and depraved generation, so that you will shine like stars in the universe (NIV)."

John 14:6 "Jesus answered, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me (NIV)."

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast. It is not proud, it is not rude. It is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails (NIV)."

When we memorize scripture, we can hear the words of God throughout our day, and our kids can learn to walk in His ways. "My son, keep your father's command, and do not forsake your mother's teaching. Bind them always on your heart, fasten them around your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you (Proverbs 6:20-22)."

I hope you enjoy memorizing these verses with your children, and thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Friday, March 2, 2018

Tips to Help Busy Parents Fit in a Workout At Home

Is it exhausting to think about all the tasks you have to complete every day? We are pretty complex creations and just to take care of ourselves, it is a chore, let alone taking care of our children. The thought of working out makes it even more daunting. So, how do we begin to think about fitting in a workout at home?

I was reading a library book to my son the other day about sleep. It was actually about the importance of sleep. It explained how your body recovers during the night, rebuilds, and fights off infection. It mentioned that a 10-year-old has slept about 3 years of his life. Ironically, I took the contents of this book that explained the importance of sleep and was encouraged to focus on just the opposite. I could wake up early; after all, I have already slept about 10 years of my life!

Of course, we all need sleep, but it does give us a new perspective. If we get up a little bit early each day, we will still be alright.

So here are some tips to help you get out of bed...

*Start your morning off with water and your favorite healthy beverage. If you plan to drink something right away that you enjoy, you are more likely to want to begin your day. I would recommend XS ( It is refreshing, carbonated, sugar-free, and tasty! Wild-berry, Lemon, and Rootbeer (3 different flavors) are some of my favorites.

*Take vitamins. Many people walk around exhausted. If you are focused and energized, getting up will be a delight, rather than a chore. At, you can find a Women's Pack or Men's Pack, which is about $1 a day, less than a cup of coffee!

*Set a timer. If you set it for 20 minutes, you will keep moving and get down to business. Before you know it, your morning exercise is complete.

*Trade off days with your spouse. Some mornings, ask your spouse to be in charge of the kids, so that you do not have to worry about any interruptions. Other mornings, encourage your spouse and you take care of the kids.

*Start off with a bang. Push yourself to see results. When you do, you will be encouraged to keep going.

*Use exercise videos to start. They will teach you proper form and new exercises. Then, once you have a good list of exercises, ditch the videos. Focus on your own personal new levels, rather than the accomplishments of others. You can always go back to learning new exercises when you need them.

*Remember that when you "Sharpen the Saw," your daily chores will not be as daunting (Covey, 2003). According to 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, "sharpening the saw" is like self-renewal. It may take 30 minutes to cut a log (complete a task) with a dull saw. But, what if you sharpen the saw first?
      5 minutes to sharpen the saw (i.e. taking care of yourself) + 10 minutes to cut the log with a sharpened saw = 15 minutes. The job, including the time it takes to build yourself up, is done in half the time! If you take time to work-out, the time it takes you to do certain tasks in the home (or at work) could be cut in half!

With some strategy, tasty motivation, a little freedom from the kids, and a mindset on self-renewal, you will be on your way to a healthy exercise routine at home. I hope these tips are a great help to you! It's the season to begin feeling good again. Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng


Covey, Stephen R. (2003). The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Personal Workbook. Simon & Schuster; New York, New York.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Top Five Food Finds of 2017 and 2018 for Your Family!

Food and the family,  they go hand-in-hand. We are always shopping, cooking, cleaning up, and preparing for the next meal. So, I wanted to share a few food finds that might make these tasks more enjoyable for you. Here are my top five food finds of 2017 and 2018!

#5. Meijer brand frozen grilled chicken breasts. Natural, frozen-to-ready in 60 minutes, no messiness in the kitchen!

#4. Homegrown Organic Farms Freeze dried blueberries - crunchy, super healthy snack! Add sunflower seeds + chocolate chips + raisins + walnuts for on-the-go.

#3. Crunchmaster Multigrain Crackers - vegetable flavor. Gluten free and they taste amazing!

#2. Great Value Organic Brown Rice and Quinoa Penne Pasta with Newman's Own Marinara Sauce - not from genetically modified crops, and no sugar added!

#1. Sonoma Flatbreads: Gluten Free Four Cheese Pizza - no preservatives, natural ingredients, and great taste!

Enjoy, and thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Teaching Your Children A Christian Response to Evil in Our World

 With much talk about the school shootings, we need to consider how we are going to talk to our kids about the recent events. We can take these real situations and teach our children valuable lessons.

A few steps that you might consider are below. They are simple steps, although it is not a simple situation for the people affected. Here is how to begin a conversation with your children:

1. Briefly explain the situation.
2. Explain that Jesus teaches us to love our neighbors and love our enemies.
3. Pray for the families.
4. Pray for the "bad guy," that he will have a change of heart.
5. Apply the situation.
6. Let them ask questions.
7. Notice their responses. Did they listen to what you said to them? Did they converse or were they confused? Did they have a change of heart in caring for all people?

The Bible gives us great advice in Romans 12:9-21. Consider reading this as a family:

"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. 

"Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. 

"Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' says the Lord. On the contrary:

"'If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.'

"Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."

When you focus on the heart of your child and the Biblical teachings that you can instill, you will be delighted to see hope in these times.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Thursday, February 15, 2018

School Shootings: What to Make of It

In the news today, we all see the most recent school shooting, which took place in Florida, and killed 17 people and injured dozens more. Parents sent their kids off to school, expecting to see them when they returned. However, for some of them, that was not the case. It's terrible for all of the families affected and frightening to those who send their kids off to school everyday.

So, what are we to do about it? Everything we do is a risk. Taking out the trash, shoveling snow, driving our car, playing sports - everything can be potentially risky. But, at what point should we re-evaluate our routine to see if there are better options?

For our children, we should always be re-evaluating. Wise people say to evaluate your actions every single day. Did you make good decisions today? Are there areas you can improve?

It's great to have faith in a system, until that system continues to malfunction. It's the same with your car. You can have faith (confidence) that your vehicle will get you to where you want it to go. But, after it stops on you once or twice and all the engine lights come on, you may no longer have faith that it will get you to where you want to go. You may consider a new vehicle, even if it costs you extra money. The same is true for education. If the system malfunctions frequently, maybe we should consider investing in another vehicle for our children's education.

Public schools offer so much to our communities. Sports, clubs, music, art, drama - all of these areas are fun and educational. School plays, art shows, Christmas concerts, and sporting events help us to enjoy our children, as they are growing up right before our eyes. They, also, provide opportunities for children to make life-long friendships and learn relational skills.

But, there are other options. And, what better time is there to consider these opportunities? Liberty University has a home-school curriculum, so that your children can learn and grow right from home. Classical Conversations is another option, where you children can be schooled at home and still learn once a week in a classroom environment. In both of these options, you do not need any prior knowledge in home-schooling. Private schools are another great option.

What hope do we have in this style of education? As the number of home-schoolers increases, the need for online teachers will increase, and the opportunity for children to participate in extra-curricular events will improve. Our youth will receive practical education and time to develop personal expertise in their areas of interest. This brings much hope for our kids in the future.

I have met people who have educated their children from home, and their children grow up to be doctors, engineers, accountants or leaders in their company of employment. If your children can read, work hard, have a positive attitude, and apply themselves, they can be successful in any area they desire.

I would encourage you, that if you have been considering other options, that you would take the time to do so. You will not regret it.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Why I Write Blogs

Until recently, you were probably wondering why I write blogs. About a month ago, I added a short biography to my page on And, I will include some of it here.

I graduated from Liberty University with a Master's degree in Marriage and Family. I have taken courses in psychology and childhood development, as well as marriage, counseling, and family life.
My Bachelor's degree is in Health Science from the University of Findlay. I have taken courses and completed personal study in nutrition, exercise, anatomy, and physiology. Nutrition, exercise, and family life have been the topics of most interest to me. And, as I study the Bible and converse with my husband, who graduated with a Master's of Divinity from Winebrenner Theological Seminary, I enjoy sharing Biblical insight, as well.

As I read and learn information in these areas, I am amazed by the knowledge that can help in our daily lives. Even though we ultimately need God for every good thing, we can use tips for living in this complex world that God created. We may know, for instance, that we are to discipline our children; but how do we do that in love and in their best interest? We may know that we are to have joy. But, how can we overcome some obstacles that may be robbing us of that joy that we long for?

Our world, our physical bodies, and our relationships are so complicated. Sometimes we need all the help we can get.

In my twenties I had a lot of questions and not a lot of answers. I knew people excelled physically, mentally, emotionally, relationally, and spiritually. I knew people had strong families, were excellent parents, skilled cooks, and felt great physically, and I knew I had a lot of room to improve. So, I decided to search for ways to become better. And, I wanted to make that information readily available to the people who were in search for wisdom in these same areas.

In reading my blogs, I hope you find pieces of knowledge and insight that might be of help to you. As one of my favorite writer's says, you can take what you find helpful and leave the rest.

If you have any comments, questions, or topics you would like me to write about, feel free to send a message on the comments page at Also, if you would like to check out previous blogs that I have written, look along the right side of the page. Click on a specific year or month, and then, click on the specific blog title that you want to read. I hope you find it a great source for wisdom and encouragement!

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Saturday, February 10, 2018

How to Use the "I'm Going to Count to Three" Rule in Parenting

You are probably thinking that this is going to be a really short blog. All I have to do is remind you how to count to three with authority in your voice. Right? Well, not exactly. I want to give you some tips on using the "I'm going to count to three" rule, including when and how it works best. They are not tried and true for every situation or kid. But, I believe they might help.

First of all, I suggest counting backwards. When you count forwards, your children could start to think that it's a game, and they can just let you keep counting. Especially as they are learning numbers, they might actually enjoy hearing you count for them.On the other hand, when you count backwards, there is a definite stopping point. Kids do not expect their parents to go into the negative numbers (if they even know about negative numbers), so they tend to take you more seriously.

Second, start with the number five. You want to teach your children to think and make wise decisions, not to be robots. In three seconds, they only have time to react, emotionally, or just without thinking. Five seconds gives them more time to think clearly and decide if they want to listen and be rewarded (with positive affirmation) or not listen and get punished. A longer period of time helps in training them to develop good character and decision-making skills.

That brings me to another point. Third, be patient and teach your children to think through their dilemma. When you rush them, they only respond with negative emotions. Children can make more wise decisions if they are not rushed, and if they are not making decisions based on emotion. You want them to make choices because they care to listen and they know it is the right thing to do. You, also, will be rewarded in the process.

Thanks for reading!

~Melissa Seng

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Do You Work Towards Success or Sharing the Good News?

I am the type of person who likes to focus on one task at a time. I like to master it. And of course with kids, that is just about impossible.

Recently I was deliberating in my mind about how people can know whether they should work towards success or sharing the good news. To be really successful, you have to have lot of focus. You have to focus on money, managing your time, sharpening your skills. But, as Christians, we know that it is not wise to focus solely on success. Our time could end tomorrow, and our money is not what would matter to us. Instead, it would be our family and our eternal security that would be of prime importance.

A pastor I listen to said that he read articles from Hawaii on the recent false missile alerts. People were not running around trying to make more money, as you might imagine. They were running to their families and the ones they love.

But, there is a struggle. Yesterday as I was getting lunch, I was thinking, "I can't believe I have to eat every single day." My need for food never goes away. I can't just decide to stop spending money on food because I always need food. God created us that way. The same is true for bills. Even if debt is paid off, you still need to buy food to survive. Of course, it is much easier when you have acquired wealth, but the need is still there. We are always consuming, and we are always in need of spending. Therefore, we are always in need of money.

As Christians, we do not like to talk about money. Messages get confusing because we see our need for a constant income, but we are encouraged, most of all, to share the gospel. God can take care of us, but Proverbs tells us if you don't work, you don't eat.

So, how do we know what our focus should be? Do we focus on work or do we focus on sharing the good news? Well in my own deliberation, I decided to compare the dilemma with more familiar territory. In our day to day, do we ask ourselves, "should we eat healthy or should we bathe today?" "Do we brush our teeth or do we drink our daily supply of water?" It particularly works best when we do both. We do not have to try to figure out which task to complete. We do it all! The more positive habits we can bundle together in our days, the stronger our lives will be.

What would that look like? In the analogy of a healthy lifestyle, if we can bundle together drinking lots of water, with brushing our teeth, exercising, getting outdoors, eating healthy, taking vitamins, and getting plenty of rest at night, we can be physically strong and healthy. We will be best prepared for our days. In the same sense, if we read the good Word, pray, spend time in fellowship with other Christians, attend church, and serve others, we will be spiritually strong and healthy. In our careers, if we give it our all, and do what it takes with integrity and hard work, we can be financially strong and healthy.

God has created us to be very complex. It is amazing to think how the animals do not have to cook their own food or go to work. We, being made in God's image, get to juggle all of these responsibilities. The more positive habits we intertwine in our busy lives, the more we will be able to take advantage of our opportunities to serve others by sharing the Good News and the more we will be able to enjoy the fruits of our labor.

Thanks for reading!
~Melissa Seng

Sunday, February 4, 2018

The Bible, Zig Ziglar, and Success

"Life's too tough to get to the top without passion. You're going to fail, be taken advantage of, be disappointed by people you trust, disappoint yourself, run out of resources - almost every day you're going to encounter a good, solid, logical reason why you ought to give up. And without passion, you just might" (Ziglar, 2006).

Whether you are working at raising kids, moving up in your career, earning more money, losing weight, becoming a better cook, gaining genuine friendships, learning a new skill, training for an event, we can all find good, logical reasons why we should just quit. Life is tough, and we can easily conclude that our dreams and our reality are never going to be one in the same. But, what if that is not the case? What if we can add a few factors, like passion, purpose, and God's promises to the equation? Could that yield much different results?

Zig Ziglar teaches us to have hope. "I have learned through the years that, for reasons I can't scientifically or even theologically explain, how I expect things to be greatly influences how they become (Ziglar, 2006)."  We should expect great things. But, do the Scriptures tell us to do the same?

John 10:10 states that Jesus came that we might have this life and have it abundantly. When God speaks about abundance, He is talking about more than we can fathom. He is able and willing to do "exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20). And, Scripture tells us that He wants to give us good gifts. These are God's promises to you! Can you imagine what that could look like in your life?

Knowing God's promises is the first step. Then, we must know our purpose. Our purpose is to trust and obey His word. We can be obedient in faith, love, and in doing good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:10).

It is fascinating to me that God tells us that if we love Him, we must obey His commands (John 14:15). We would expect to see a huge list of commands. But, instead, he tells us that His command is this: to love one another (1 John 4:21).

Third, after we know God's promises and our purpose, we must have passion. Passion is emotional energy that you use to accomplish your goals and dreams. Passion can be derived from finding your God-given talents and formulating your goals and dreams, which are, often times, the desires that God has placed on your heart.  When you have passion, purpose, and God's promises, you can clearly see that good things are to come. "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11).

Whether you are a parent, who is happy to raise a family, or a career person, who wants to make a difference, if your heart is turned toward God, He can give you the love, the courage, the strength, the faith - everything that you need - to see positive change.

Thanks for reading!
~Melissa Seng


Ziglar, Zig. (2006). Better Than Good: Creating the Life You Can't Wait to Live. Integrity Publishers:  Brentwood, TN.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Three Great Pasta Alternatives for Your Family!

Talking on the subject of healthy eating can be quite comical. Some people want to run away, while others want to hear every word that you say. Some people, like myself, need to eat healthy and do a detox; others, like my husband, tell me that he wants to do a retox. Not one of us is the same. After all, Usain Bolt ate 1000 chicken nuggets during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and even added fries and apple pie with that ( But, for most of us (especially women), eating healthy greatly improves our everyday life.

Many people are sensitive to gluten. But, as The Daniel Plan explains it, "what is one man's medicine is another man's poison." The book states that inflammation that results from gluten can trigger arthritis, asthma, diabetes, dementia, obesity, depression, heart disease, and cancer. That is quite a list!

Recently I found three great alternatives to ordinary pasta. Pastas, breads, and baked goods tend to cause inflammation. So, here are three ideas to help...

1. Quinoa
2. Brown Rice Pasta (may contain quinoa, as well)
3. Spaghetti Squash.

I was so excited about these alternatives because after I topped them with my favorite spices and cheese, I enjoyed them more than spaghetti. Each of these options are delicious and healthy. But, we, also, must keep in mind the type of sauce we are using. Regular spaghetti sauce usually contains ingredients that are genetically modified and are filled with sugar. However, there are choices readily available that are non-GMO and have no sugar added.

Top it off with Mozzarella cheese and your favorite spices and enjoy! For a bonus, you can place the baked spaghetti squash into a pan with sauce and cheese, and turn it into your favorite lasagna recipe!

I hope these ideas are a great help to you and your family. Thanks for reading, and feel free to share my blogs!

Melissa Seng

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Protecting Our Kids from Drugs

 It was once believed that only the "troubled kids" do drugs. Those were the kids you knew not to hang out with, because they were choosing to be rebellious. It was a lifestyle, and one that most of us chose not to live. Today, this is not the case.

President Donald Trump just mentioned Hancock County in his speech about combating the nation's drug problem. Findlay, Ohio, particularly, is a family-oriented community, where families place high value on raising their kids and teaching them the value of hard-work and living a moral life. Unfortunately, even in conservative communities, drugs are having an impact on the youth.

Recently, I read an article about a young athlete who got addicted to a "study drug" in college and ended his life. The pictures showed that he was a good-looking, well-kept student. He had a bright future, as he was a  focused, hard-working, and a well-liked individual. Sadly, drugs got in his path. His loving family didn't even know that he was struggling with addiction.

These types of stories tell me that we need to do more to help our kids. What can we do to help them before drugs come knocking at their door?

In reading Zig Ziglar's book, Better Than Good, written in 2006, he shares that we can make an incredible impact on our youth. He tells that his father passed away when he was young, but a man stepped into his life and treated him as a son. Zig Ziglar explains that he was filled with encouragement, direction, love and support, which helped to shape his character and his life. He states that we, too, can provide wisdom, encouragement, and care to the young people around us.

So, what tangible steps can we take as a community to teach children to stay away from drugs?

I go back to my personal experience in elementary school. For years, I watched these strong, purposeful, and courageous police officers come in to our classrooms and tell us that they care about us. They told us that drugs were bad and they wanted us to stay away from them. I realized, because of their sincerity, experience, and care, that I could rely on their words of wisdom. Those officers were the reason why I never let drugs come into my life. 

Let's do the same for our kids. The D.A.R.E. program still exists in the classroom, but unfortunately between 2002 and 2010, the revenue declined from $10 million to $3.7 million after government reports that it wasn't effective ( Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) not only addresses drugs, but also violence, gangs, alcohol abuse, and peer pressure. It is an entire curriculum for helping our youth! What better things do we need to teach our kids in schools than such topics as these?!? Through this education, we can put our youth on the right path for success in and out of the classroom. And, more importantly, these topics are so pertinent because we do care.

Let's not only promote the education in the classrooms, but in the church, as well. A bible-centered curriculum for kids, that includes teachings on drugs, would be great. Some people may not be crazy about the idea, but if drugs can take our children away from our God and our family, we need to do our part to save them from such a lifestyle. Drugs contaminate the body and spirit, as well as relationships, and every aspect of a person's life. "Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness, out of reverence for God (2 Corinthians 7:1). We need to teach our kids these truths, through the Word of God, so that they can be equipped to do every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

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Thanks for reading!

Melissa Seng