If you are one of my Hills girls (who I write this blog for) I feel really strongly this week to go back to what Sisterhood is all about me. Sisterhood started with falling in love with Jesus as a young girl and being annoyed at my inability to ignore the plight of those needing hope and help.
It grew as I discovered Jesus heart for humanity. Throughout my younger years so many seeds (although not directly relating to the Sisterhood message) were sown, watered and some even laid to rest.
In 2007 I sat in a Colour Conference meeting and listened to the Sisterhood message. As Bobbie shared her story, I sat surrounded by 16 000 women, balling my eyes out as God hand delivered the Sisterhood mandate to my heart not as Jenny but rather, as the Pastor at Hills. God told me to take it back to our women and give the message a local expression.
The Colour Sisterhood is what many of us have had in our heart for years but have found difficult to express and articulate or even more difficult, to outwork. What I love about the idea of Sisterhood is the fact that Bobbie Houston has passionately embraced her role to articulate to us a clear vision of what is already in our hearts and sought to bring clarity to our values, identity, purpose and mission. Her passion is for the local church.
To get the heartbeat of what I am on about each week it is important for you to get where I am coming from. Please take the time to visit www.coloursisterhood.com.au. There are videos, articles, projects and personal stories that will help you get the picture. It is my responsibility to help articulate what this looks like for us locally (see below) and it is your responsibility to be the face and hands of this vision. I AM SISTERHOOD was penned by Bobbie Houston and I want you to think about how this message applies to you and Hills Church and the broader community in which we at Hills have connection and influence here in the Eastern suburbs of Melbourne. It has implications for your home, your family, your church. your local community, our state, our nation and the globe.
“I AM SISTERHOOD is a declaration that frames the heart of God’s girls around the earth. It seeks to put language around a growing movement of women arising on the earth, who are responding to a simple invitation to BE THE CHANGE and make a positive difference in their local and/or global communities.
“I AM SISTERHOOD is a declaration. A declaration that is bold and strong, quiet and confident. A declaration about value and identity, purpose and mission. It is a declaration intentional in reach and embrace. It transcends culture and creed, age and status, prejudice and preference. It’s a declaration that positions itself amid awareness and responsibility, concern and care, injustice and solution. A declaration ultimately concerned with the welfare of the world and her inhabitants. It has courageously woven its way through time and history and continues to weave itself across our lives and future. It is our collective here and now – and belongs to any feminine soul, who somehow believes that she was born for more than what is temporal and fleeting. It’s for women of all ages and background, personality and style, colour and vibrancy. It’s for the bold and bodacious, the demure and unassuming. It’s the sisterhood that perhaps heaven imagined when a very intentional Creator created His girls. It’s strong and beautiful, feminine and gracious, authoritative and gentle and above all else, welcomes the broken and discarded. Whichever way you see or understand it, it is a growing movement of women across the earth. Our invitation to you that you are welcome to come gather with this sisterhood. We’re down-to-earth and normal and our heart is to take what is in our hand and genuinely use it for good. So whoever you are, and wherever you are, be blessed – and let’s believe that together we can make this world a better place. With love…”. © 2009 Bobbie Houston
It is always a blessing to be ‘God with Skin On’ to someone near or far…..we have the local opportunity of supporting those living with challenges in a very practical way, by cooking a meal. You may never have made a meal for someone …this is your time to arise and shine!!! You may be gifted in hospitality and love to cook: Arise and shine!
Perhaps you have a favourite meal that your family love you to cook…… then why not share this meal with someone who needs it! You may be time poor but have time on a weekend to cook up a meal and put it in the freezer so when you are contacted you have something already prepared. You may be cooking for your family and simply do a double batch and freeze one lot…Perfect.. It is such a simple gift – but means so much during difficult times.
If you have already been making meals we will still need you to fill out a form.
This is my recipe for a simple slow cook tomato ‘wonder sauce’ (‘cos people always ‘wonder’ how I make it)……….which I can turn into any one of 10 dishes pretty easily. I usually cook it by the huge pot full by multiplying this by 4 & freeze it in those single use containers from the $2 shop. If it is completely cold, it can also be bagged up in ziplock or freezer bags that sit in an outer container until it is frozen………..
3 large tins tomatoes chopped (you can use fresh if they are around at a moderate price or have some that are a bit squishy to use up – I usually give the vege drawer the once over & add anything in that looks like it doesn’t have much more life in it)
1 small tin tomato paste (I use homebrand – it’s fine)
3 red capsicums (they are a bit pricey at the moment – green & yellow are ok – but don’t taste as nice)
1 parsnip grated
2 carrots grated
3 med zucchinis
4 med brown onions diced
2 cloves of garlic (less if you are not keen)
olive oil & butter
2 vegetable stock cubes or one of the many equivelents
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
fresh thyme if you have it (other herb options are bay leaf, oragano, sage – keep in mind if you are using dried herbs they are stronger)
NOTE: I have found that it is more practical to store a very simple tomato sauce and add seasonings (such as chilli flakes or fresh basil) only when suited to the particular recipe or dish. Especially, if you are freezing for multiple dish use and potentially cooking for others – it’s probably worth keeping the herbs & SEASONINGS mild – thyme is a delicate aromatic – be aware of salt and pepper (ED’s note: I am allergic to pepper); people have wide & varied impressions of what is the right amount – you can ALWAYS add more at serving, but it’s hard to take out!
slice zucchini’s & peppers up into long strips – put them on a tray, sprinkle them with olive oil & then in a moderate oven for about 40 mins. Turn them at 25mins. fry off onions & garlic in some olive oil until they are a little caramelized & translucent. Add a generous ‘knob’ of butter to the pot & add carrots & parsnip. Saute for about 10 minutes, if it gets too dry add a little wine or more butter. Add tomato paste & cook off for a few minutes. Stir constantly or it will burn. Tip in tins of tomatoes, rinse out the tins & tip in, crumble in stock cubes, brown sugar & add thyme.
Simmer slowly for an hour or about 4 hours in a slow cooker. Add in ‘roasted’ capsicum & zucchini & cook for another 1/2 hour. VOILA – ready to use for:
pasta sauce, pizza base (pureed with a stick blender), taco sauce, lasagne filling, vegetable gratin, base for addition of cooked meat, meatballs, chicken, etc (add a shredded supermarket roast chicken to this sauce – it’s dinner on the plate in 10 minutes!). Sauted prawns with this sauce make a ‘marinara’ in moments!
THE SISTERHOOD IN THE WORLD @ HILLS
We have the privilege of being able to make a difference in two global projects. Last sunday we launched our annual ‘operation shoebox’ organized by Samaritan’s Purse. Click here to read more about it and can I urge you to participate, gathering something in your shopping basket each week to add to the box?
Of course, the other amazing work we have the chance to support is the Dalit Untouchable children in India. Bev & Juni will commence their walk on 1st October. Visit walkforthekids.com.au to find out more…