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Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is fast approaching, so I thought it would be a good time to reflect back on my life and the many ways my Mom has influenced me.

I was a very fortunate child. I grew up as the oldest of eight, and Mom was able to stay home with us and homeschool us through those years. At the time, I didn’t know there was any other way. Now, I’m very grateful for those years and the way my parents were able to shape and protect my values and beliefs.

One of the benefits of being homeschooled was that Mom had the freedom to make sure we started each day in the Word of God. I started memorizing Scripture at the young age of five, and still remember many of those verses to this day. As I got older, our Bible time transitioned from reading a story and working on a few verses into full-fledged Bible studies.

I’m grateful for that Biblical background and that Mom’s dedication set me on a firm foundation.

Mom taught me many things by example. She would read books out loud to us, so I learned how to read a story in an engaging way (none of that monotone stuff). She regularly read books to herself too, as entertainment, and I learned to love reading.

I learned from Mom’s example.

She taught me how to bake, and how to look at what foods are available and/or need to be used up in the fridge, freezer, and pantry, and then come up with a dish from that. She taught me how to follow recipes and how to cook without one.

Mom taught me how to sew, grow a garden, preserve food, experiment, and so much more. And I’m still learning from her. In fact, in just a few months, my husband and I will help my parents build a greenhouse–something we want to do eventually as well.

Mom has always encouraged me to try new things. One of those things was to make soap!

That’s right, Good News Soap probably wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for my Mom.

Good News Soap wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for Mom

One day, when my husband and I were visiting my parents, Mom mentioned something about wondering what it would take to make her own soap. It sparked my curiosity too, especially because we had just bought a bar of lilac scented handmade soap a few days before.

I decided to do a little research, and being the type of person who always likes to learn a new craft or skill, I decided to try it.

After I made my first couple of batches of soap, I realized I had enough soap to last us years, but still wanted to make more because it was fun.

I had also wanted to start a business of some sort for a long time, but until that point I didn’t know what I wanted to do.

Now, I had a product that I enjoyed making and that I figured would sell well, so I decided it was finally time: Time to start a business!

Though it may seem like Mom didn’t do much to get me started (just an offhand comment one day?) there was a huge foundation she had laid in my character that made it all possible.

So, thank you Mom, for all that you did to raise me right.

If you want to say thank you to your mother, why not send her some of our luxurious soaps? I’ve put together a special Flower Bouquet bundle of our top three floral scents at a discounted rate.

Your mom doesn’t like floral scents? We have a wide variety of other scents ranging from the citrus of Lemongrass to the softness of Coconut Shea to the freshness of Australian Bamboo Grass, so you are sure to find something she will love.

Plus, from now until May 8, 2022, save 10% on your entire order with the discount code MOM.

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Lemongrass Essential oil soap.

My Lemongrass Essential oil soap is special to me because it is a remake of the very first soap I ever made, back in 2019.

Back then, I didn’t know yet whether I would like soap making. I had read about it and thought it would be cool to try, but didn’t know if I would want to keep making soap (spoiler alert: I was hooked after that first batch).

All Natural Lemongrass soap
All Natural Lemongrass soap

Anyway, since I was just starting, I didn’t want to spend a lot on materials or equipment. I bought a stainless steel pot and spatula from the dollar store (both of which I still use today 🙂), found an immersion blender at a thrift store (still use that too), and lined a small cardboard box with freezer paper for a mold.

For materials, I ordered some lye from a specialty store, but went with oils that I had on hand – a pound of lard from the grocery store and some coconut oil.

With much fear and trepidation (because I had never worked with lye before) I started my first batch.

When you make soap, you mix lye and water together and then add that mixture to your oils. Then, you need to blend it until it emulsifies and reaches “trace” – basically the texture of thin gravy. What I didn’t know back then is that lard in a soap recipe “slows down trace” so it takes a long time of blending to emulsify. When I think back to how long I had to blend that first batch (several minutes) versus how my current recipe works (less than a minute of blending), it truly amazes me.

Anyway, I had read that it is a good idea, when you are new to making soap, to just make an unscented, uncolored batch the first time because it’s easier. And I intended to do that. I really did.

But… then I wondered how I would like using it, and I changed my mind. So, I grabbed what I had on hand – Lemongrass essential oil for fragrance, and turmeric for color.

The next day, when the soap had set up, I used a knife to cut it and set the bars on a shelf to cure.
That first batch of soap made the whole house smell Heavenly! And I had so much fun making it that I had to keep going.

Today, my ingredients have changed and so have some of my tools – I don’t use lard anymore and I do use things like Shea butter and Cocoa Butter – but the process is essentially the same.

So, when I ran out of that first batch of Lemongrass soap, I decided to recreate it.

I still used Lemongrass Essential oil to scent it and turmeric to color it, but I did update the recipe to be what I use in all my soaps – Olive oil, Coconut oil, Palm oil, Shea Butter, Cocoa butter, and Castor oil.

Now, it’s available for sale so you can enjoy a piece of where it all began!

God bless.

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Identity in Christ

Matthew 4:1-4 (ESV)

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become bread." But he [Jesus] answered, "It is written,
     'Man shall not live by bread alone
      but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"

What was this temptation about?

For a long time, I thought it was just about whether or not to eat, and that Jesus was resisting the devil’s suggestion on principle because, well, he’s the devil so you’re supposed to resist him.

However, I have come to realize there is more to it than that.

The devil started by saying, “If you are the Son of God…”


This temptation wasn’t about food, but about Jesus’ identity.

The devil wanted Jesus to prove who he was by performing some sign, but he also hid the real purpose of the temptation behind Jesus’ physical circumstance – the fact that he was hungry. I think the real temptation though, was for Jesus to doubt his identity as the Son of God and have to prove it to himself by some miraculous sign.

But how did Jesus respond?

He said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. ” (emphasis added)

Jesus knew that the devil was attacking his identity, so he responded with a statement about where his identity came from. Jesus knew who he was because he studied the Scriptures, and so when the devil tried to cause him to question his identity, Jesus quoted the source of his knowledge about who he was.

So what can we learn from this in our own lives?

First, the devil often tries to hide his real agenda behind something else that doesn’t seem like a big deal.

He masks his purpose, in the hope that we will not see the danger and be led astray. Therefore, we need to be vigilant in resisting the devil – even in the “little” things.

Second, the devil will try to attack your identity as a child of God and try to make you doubt or even dismiss that fact.

The truth is, we are all God’s children, and he loves each and every person. However, many people do not choose to accept that love, but turn away after other things.

When the devil tries to attack your identity, where can you turn?

Jesus provided the answer for that.

Turn to God’s Word.

The Bible is the ultimate authority for who you are. In it, you can learn that, if you have chosen Jesus as lord of your life, you are:

  • Free from sin (Romans 6:6-7)
  • A child of God (Romans 8:14-17)
  • God’s fellow worker (1 Corinthians 3:9)
  • A new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17)
  • God’s temple – he lives in you (1 Corinthians 3:16, 2 Corinthians 6:16)

And much more!

But how do you know that? You have to spend time studying the Word of God.

When you know who you are in Christ, the devil has a much harder time leading you astray.

If you have made Jesus the Lord of your life but don’t know what the Bible says about who you are, then you are in greater danger of being led astray.

And if you have never accepted Jesus and his gift of salvation, then what protection from the devil do you have?

If that’s you, if you have never accepted Jesus, then I encourage you to do that right now. You don’t need some kind of fancy prayer or special setting. You can accept him right where you are.

Romans 10: 9-10 says, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”

That’s it!

If you believe Jesus came and died to take away your sins and then was raised to life to reign with the Father in Heaven, but have never called on him to be saved, do it now. Don’t wait. We are not promised tomorrow.

If you made that decision – now or at some other time in your life – get in the Word. Read God’s word every day, so you know who you are and the devil can’t attack your identity.

Father God, I pray that these words I have written bring hope into someone’s life. I pray that those who know you will turn to you all the more, and that those who have never sought you will have their hearts softened that they may turn to you and be saved.

In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.