Friday, March 20, 2020

Elderberry for Flu -- Who Knew?

photo source - Wikipedia

Rabbi Jem and I believe it's important to heed the advice of the CDC and President Trump during this time of combatting the Corona Virus.  We decided to stop all gatherings at the synagogue until this pandemic is over.  We're encouraging our congregation to listen to the warnings and stay at home if at all possible.  It's the wise and common sense thing to do.

It's also important during this time to remember this verse:  

"Be still, and know that I AM God." 
(Psalm 46:11)

Since we're all supposed to be staying out of public places in order to slow/stop the virus, it's a perfect time to:
  • be prayer-full - pray for your loved ones, neighbors, family, and leaders 
  • be thank-full - make a list and add to it daily.  I'm thankful for Walmart's online ordering with curb service and for the "senior shopping" hours started by our local grocery stores
  • be worship-full - I love music and keep it playing all day long.  I have a large list of songs here on my blog -- on the right, under Labels.
  • be thought-full - I'm reading the Word and keeping that foremost in my mind. Last week's POST - My Corona Virus Safety Plan has some wonder-full scriptures to focus on (instead of the news on television)
  • be help-full - often, in stillness, God will bring someone to my mind. I pray for them, and then if they keep coming to mind, I'll contact them.  I'm trying to remember to reach out with a kind offer to help my neighbors, friends, family and congregation members.
  • be grace-full - this is a stress-full time for people.  Some people are very fear-full. I'm mind-full of being kind and patient with those I come in contact with.  I want to be an encourager.

I think it's also wise to use the things God made for our health and healing.  I'll be talking about two of those today. 

In the fall of 2019, I learned about elderberry and started making and using it.  A friend gave me a bag of dried berries, and I made both the syrup and tincture. This is the recipe I used for the syrup:

Elderberry Syrup:
  • 3/4 cup dried elderberries
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon dried cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon dried cloves or 4 whole cloves or 1 drop clove essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger or 1 teaspoon dried ginger or 1 drop ginger essential oil
  •  3/4 - 1 cup raw honey (depends on your tastebuds for sweetness)
  1. In a large pot, bring the elderberries, water, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer till liquid has reduced by half (40-45 minutes).
  3. Let mixture cool, then drain the liquid using a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth.
  4. Press all liquid out of the berries with the back of a wooden spoon.
  5. Add the raw honey and mix well. 
  6. Store in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator for up to four months.        
This is a small batch of elderberry tincture - made in November

The elderberry tincture is different and is easier to make, (just add 80 proof brandy or vodka to the berries) but takes longer. I made some in November and it's now ready to use.  I found some great information about the syrup and how to make the tincture at Deep Roots At Home, which is a lovely blog that I highly recommend.  Jacqueline is a former nurse and writes great articles about health and natural healing remedies.  

We've been taking elderberry syrup since November, and have not had any colds or flu.  If we feel a sore throat or cold symptoms, we take a tablespoon of the syrup and the discomfort goes away. 

I'm a big believer in essential oils for health, too.  We've been using DoTerra's On-Guard blend daily.  I use the oil on my big toe and thumb at bedtime, in hand soap, and I keep a roller bottle in my purse.  Before I go out, I roll the oil on my throat and upper chest so that I'm breathing it in while around people.  I also use it in my diffuser as well as at the synagogue.  Here's the link to my website.  Click on Essential Oils 101 to read about the benefits of using On-Guard during cold and flu season.  

Are you using any herbals or oils during this season?   And, are you finding any specific scriptures use-full during this time?  Please share in the comments.

Stay safe, Gail-Friends, and have a blessed "stay-cation."

Medical Disclaimer:
I am not a doctor or a nurse. I'm a beginning student of herbal remedies and natural health. The things I am using are my own personal health choices.  Be sure to consult your physician or health professional about your own personal health choices and decisions.  NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition without consulting your health professional.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Thankful Thursday - My Corona Virus Safety Plan

What a week!  If you've turned on the news, you know by now that we're in a pandemic due to the Corona flu virus.  Businesses, schools, churches, and even theme parks here in Florida are closing.  People are stocking up on food, hand sanitizer, and toilet paper because it looks like the whole country may be shutting down for a couple of weeks.  Fear and hysteria are rampant - mainly due to the fanned flames of the mainstream media (MSM) outlets.   But, dear Gail-Friends, all is well.

Adonai is still on the throne and all is well. 

All is well  -  in spite of what your news media is shouting at you 24/7.  Our country has gone through worse health threats than this virus . . .  and survived.  We will get through this.  So, take a deep breath and think on these things:

  • Use common sense and good hygiene
  • Meditate on the Scriptures below
  • Keep calm and pray 
  • Share these things with those who are afraid

Psalm 91 is my go-to psalm in times like these.  I learned to cling to this passage while going through THREE back-to-back hurricanes in 2004.  You can read about it HERE.

  Dwell in the Shelter of Elyon

Psalm 91

Make note of the words in red

He who dwells in the shelter of Elyon,
will abide in the shadow of Shaddai.
I will say of Adonai,
“He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.
For He will rescue you from the hunter’s trap
and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with His feathers,
and under His wings you will find refuge.
His faithfulness is body armor and shield.
You will not fear the terror by night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the plague that stalks in darkness,
    nor the scourge that lays waste at noon.
A thousand may fall at your side,
and ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.
You will only look on with your eyes
and see the wicked paid back.
For you have made Elyon your dwelling,
    even Adonai, who is my refuge,
10 so no evil will befall you
    nor any plague come near your tent.
11 For He will give His angels charge over you,
to guard you in all your ways.
12 Upon their hands they will lift you up,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.[a]
13 You will tread upon the lion and cobra,
trample the young lion and serpent.
14 “Because he has devoted his love to Me,
    I will deliver him.
I will set him securely on high,
    because he knows My Name.
15 When he calls on Me, I will answer him.
I will be with him in trouble, rescue him, and honor him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him
and show him My salvation.”
(Tree of Life Version)

And listen to this soft, slow, comforting rendition of this song:  Psalm 91

Psalm 27 is another go-to Scripture to cling to.  You can read about my experience with this beautiful passage HERE.

Let Your Heart Take Courage

Psalm 27

Of David.
Adonai is my light and my salvation:
    whom should I fear?
Adonai is the stronghold of my life:
    whom should I dread?
When evildoers approached me to devour my flesh
—my adversaries and my foes—they stumbled and fell.
Though an army camp besieges me, my heart will not fear.
Though war breaks out against me, even then will I be confident.
One thing have I asked of Adonai,
that will I seek:
to dwell in the House of Adonai
    all the days of my life,
to behold the beauty of Adonai,
    and to meditate in His Temple.
For in the day of trouble He will hide me in His sukkah,
conceal me in the shelter of His tent,
and set me high upon a rock.
Then will my head be high above my enemies around me.
In His Tabernacle I will offer sacrifices with shouts of joy.
I will sing, yes, sing praises to Adonai.
Hear, Adonai, when I call with my voice,
be gracious to me and answer me.
To You my heart says: “Seek My face.”
Your face, Adonai, I seek.
Do not hide Your face from me.
Do not turn Your servant away in anger.
You have been my help.
Do not abandon me or forsake me,
    O God my salvation.
10 Though my father and my mother
forsake me, Adonai will take me in.
11 Teach me Your way, Adonai,
and lead me on a level path—
because of my enemies.
12 Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes.
For false witnesses rise up against me,
    breathing out violence.
13 Surely I trust that I will see the goodness
of Adonai in the land of the living.
14 Wait for Adonai.
Be strong, let Your heart take courage,
    and wait for Adonai.
(Tree of Life Version)

And listen to this comforting song based on the passage:  Adonai Uri/The Lord Is My Light by Michael ben David.

And this verse is so very important: 

 (put on) the garment of praise
        for the spirit of heaviness
(Isaiah 61:3b Tree of Life Version) 
Listen to this song.  Oh, it's SO GOOD - Garments of Praise by Robin Mark
I know your feet will want to dance - so let them!  And when you're tired from dancing, lie down and listen to this one  -    In Your Presence by Paul Wilbur.  

Turn off the news! Meditate on this verse and sing, praise Adonai, lift your hands, dance . . . and that spirit of fear and heaviness will leave you. 
And remember this, Gail-Friends:  Adonai works all things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)  He will bring some good from this experience.  He promised. 
Blessings to y'all and have a good week.  

Thankful Thursday is my weekly discipline - to express my gratitude to Hashem for His over-flowing, abundant blessings.