The Love Paradox

We women do all sorts of things in order to fill our bottomless hunger to be loved. A woman will stay in an unhealthy relationship hoping that someday…the man she is with will come to love her. A girl will choose a career path, thinking that someday, her mother or father will be proud enough of her to love her. A woman will tolerate years of abuse in hope that things will someday change and she will be loved. A woman will put her body on display with her clothing, in the hope that by noticing her body, perhaps someone will come to love her heart. A woman will marry and divorce, and marry and divorce, in an endless search to find someone who will truly love her. A mother can even have controlling demands of her grown children, in fear of loosing their love. There is an endless list of things a woman will do for the mere hope of being loved.

When I think of an unloved woman in Scripture, my heart goes immediately to Leah. She was a homely woman, coerced into marrying Jacob by her father. Repeatedly, Scripture points out that Jacob loved Rachel and hated Leah. Leah yearned for Jacob to love her. Each time she had a baby, she hoped the baby would give her favor and love from her husband.

Genesis 29:31-35 “When the Lord saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. And Leah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Reuben, for she said, ‘Because the Lord has looked upon my affliction; for now my husband will love me.’ She conceived again and bore a son, and said, ‘Because the Lord has heard that I am hated, he has given me this son also.’ And she called his name Simeon. Again she conceived and bore a son, and said, ‘Now this time my husband will be attached to me, because I have borne him three sons.’ Therefore his name was called Levi. And she conceived again and bore a son, and said, ‘This time I will praise the Lord.’ Therefore she called his name Judah. Then she ceased bearing.”

We are never told in Scripture that Jacob ever loved Leah. In fact, in Genesis 30:14-19 we see Leah’s struggle for affection continue. I am sad for Leah, yet as Scripture unfolds, I see a deeper love story in Leah’s life. God created Leah to look the way she did. God loved her the way He made her. God noticed her, and in her pain of being unloved, God blessed her. It was through Judah, her fourth son, that King David was born, and eventually the eternal King, Christ. Leah was a very loved woman.
Did Leah ever know how much God loved her? There are glimpses through her children’s names that she might have understood that God loved and cared for her. However the question I wonder is if Leah ever found her satisfaction in God, or if she forever longed for the love of her husband. It is one thing for a person to know they are loved with an everlasting love, but that knowledge is powerless. It is only when a woman casts out the idols of her life and rests in God’s completely filling love before can she be completely satisfied and find perfect joy in God. “In your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore” Psalm 16:11.

Looking past Leah, another woman pops up in Scripture. Ruth forsook her idols and found her satisfaction to be only in God. Ruth followed God without an expectation of blessing.

Ruth 1:15-17 And she said, “See, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods; return after your sister-in-law.” But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there will I be buried. May the Lord do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you.”

In leaving Moab and following Naomi and the God of Israel, Ruth not only forsook her gods, but also her family, marriage, and the hope of having children. She completely threw herself, wildly, and unassuming into her faith in God. We continue to see Ruth’s dedication to God through her love and care of Naomi her mother-in-law. And then, Ruth choose to follow God’s command in seeking a kinsman redeemer through her husband’s family’s in Boaz. When Boaz realized that Ruth was sacrificing the possibility of a long marriage for an old man like himself, he was deeply touched and told Ruth, “May you be blessed by the Lord, my daughter. You have made this last kindness greater than the first in that you have not gone after young men, whether poor or rich” Ruth 3:10. Obed, the son of Ruth and Boaz was the grandfather of King David, and in time, Christ, as we know was born from the lineage of David.

Both women, Leah and Ruth were created, chosen, loved, and blessed by God. Ruth followed God, fully aware that the consequences of her choice to follow God could mean a loss of earthly love and earthly relationships. Yet, Ruth was content in God and obeying His commands. Ruth had found that God was more than enough to satisfy. She did not require a husband, a family, children to complete her happiness. God was enough for her.

Like Ruth, Leah was obedient to God. Leah also honored her father and husband. Leah saw God’s hand at work in her life by providing her with children. So, Leah acknowledged that God loved her. But Leah was continually unsatisfied. For Leah, God was not enough. Leah longed to be loved by her husband. I admit it would be a very difficult scenario for any woman. So I do not judge Leah for the struggles of her heart. But I can’t help to wonder how different dear Leah’s life story would have been IF she had pursued her joy in God instead of earthly, faulty, human relationships.

“You open Your hand And satisfy the desire of every living thing” Psalm 145:16.

Flax Puffs

Flax is an incredible seed. It is rich in Omega 3, fiber, protein, vitamins, lignans (which help prevent hormonal related cancers like ovarian and breast cancer), B vitamins, copper, and magnesium. I think flax is greatly undervalued by many health enthusiasts. It is gluten free and low carb as an added bonus to those with dietary concerns.

I try to incorporate flax in our family’s diet as I am able. I add it to muffins, bread, oatmeal, and make these lovely puffs to stuff with strawberries and cream or salads like chicken salad.


1/2 stick butter (4 Tablespoons)

1 cup water or milk

1 teaspoons salt

1 cup ground flax (I buy whole golden flax seeds and grind them as needed in my coffee grinder)

4 eggs

Directions to make choux pastry puffs:

1) Melt butter on stovetop

2) Add water or milk to melted butter

3) Bring milk and water/milk to a simmer

4) Add salt and flax flour and continue to cook a couple minutes until a thick, gummy paste forms

5) Beat 4 eggs together

6) Slowly mix eggs and flour mixture together with a hand or stand up mixer until a thick, somewhat shiny batter appears

7) Bake at 400 15 minutes

8) Turn oven down to 350 and bake 15 minutes more

9) Cool, and then cut off tops and scoop out moist centers

10) Fill the puffs with favorite salads or desserts, or eat hot with raw honey

Depending on size, I usually get about 8-12 puffs from this recipe.

Mostly Vegetables Chicken Salad

I love chicken salads. I have experimented with all kinds of ingredients and dressings in my chicken salads. Often it is leftover chicken mixed with whatever ingredients I have on hand. Classic chicken salads include a little celery and possibly onion with chicken making up the rest of the salad mix. Recently I made vegetables, instead of the chicken, the stars in the the salad to create a more nutrient heavy lunch. The salad has crunch, it has sweetness from apples, it has chicken, and it has a load of cilantro and spinach. Here is my version of a veggie rich chicken salad.


Salad Mix:

Cooked chicken-I prefer dark meat due to its nutrients and moisture

A couple handfuls of fresh spinach leaves

A half bunch chopped cilantro (parsley can sub)

A small handful of pecans (or other unsalted nut)

1/2 a chopped sweet pepper

3 chopped celery stalks

1/2 chopped apple

1 chopped small cucumber


3/4 cup mayonnaise

Dash balsamic vinegar

Dash worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

2 teaspoons garlic powder


1) Mix vegetables with chicken

2) Mix dressing ingredients

3) Toss dressing and veggie chicken together

4) Serve with lettuce, in a wrap, in pita bread, or try out making easy, gluten free, omega rich flax puffs.

Vinegar Rose Toner

I use toner rather unfaithfully. It is more as an “as needed” product for me. But it could be used on a daily basis. I keep vinegar rose toner as one of my on hand as part of my homemade skincare products. As I age, I am getting a few sun-spots, and find regular use of this toner helps lighten them. I tend to use vinegar rose toner most in the summer when I notice more oil and skin discolorations. It also brightens and tightens my skin.

Rosewater: Helps to reduce skin inflammation and aid in healing. It heals acne quickly, and helps prevent it by purifying the skin’s pores. Rosewater contains antibacterial components that aid in healing and preventing scarring. It is also a great tonic for aging skin because it slows free-radical damage. I also use rosewater in making cold cream.

Apple Cider Vinegar: I add a little to the rosewater to boost the antifungal/viral components of the toner. It has many of the same benefits of rosewater, but is too harsh to be applied directly to the skin on the face. It does help lighten and brighten skin, so is helpful in evening a complection. It can be left out of the toner if desired.

Vitamin C: Since we all get sun, vitamin C is essential to help skin resist the damaging effects of ultraviolet radiation. It is more important to eat vitamin C rich foods than to put C on the skin. But a little C can be absorbed into the skin if the PH is low enough. Since the vinegar and rose are low PH, I add a tiny bit of vitamin C crystals to the toner.

This toner is incredibly easy to make. I only use three ingredients:

Apple Cider vinegar, Rosewater, and vitamin C crystals.


To Make:

3/4 cup rosewater

2 t. apple cider vinegar

1/2 t. vitamin C crystals

Mix it up until the crystals dissolve.

To Use:

Dab a bit on a cotton ball and sponge on a clean face. Follow with a moisturizer.