When life hands you lemons, just hand ’em over!

The Lemonade Maker
There’s nothing like an ice-cold glass of homemade lemonade to help you cool off on a hot summer day.

Refreshing and delicious, lemonade is easy to make and, unlike the powdered instant varieties, contains no preservatives or artificial flavorings!

Homemade Lemonade
Serves 6

Ingredients:
10-12 lemons at room temperature (plus 4 or 5 more for garnishing if desired)
1½ cups sugar (2 cups if you like it really sweet)
6 cups water, divided

Instructions
:
Wash lemons and then roll them on a hard surface until they become soft.
Zest 2-3 lemons and set aside.

In a pot over medium heat, add sugar, lemon zest and 2 cups of water. Simmer lightly for about 5 minutes or until sugar has dissolved and the mixture has a light yellow color. Do not boil. Remove from heat.

Juice the lemons to come up with 2 cups of lemon juice. If you don’t have a citrus juicer or a reamer, cut the lemon in half crosswise, hold half in one hand, push a fork into the center and twist.

Strain the lemon juice into a large pitcher and then strain the sugar mixture into the large pitcher. Add in 4 cups of cold water.

Taste-test and if the lemonade is a little sweet for your taste, add a little more straight lemon juice to it.

Serve in chilled glasses with some lemon slices and ice (or lemonade ice cubes if you’re ambitious and want to make a batch just for that purpose!)  Or freeze some fresh strawberries in advance and add them along with the ice cubes!

Store remaining lemonade in the frig; will keep for up to 3 days.

Food for ThoughtFOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Have you ever heard the old saying, “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade?” As over-used as this phrase has become, the saying holds a lot of truth . . . in part. Unfortunately, in our humanness, when faced with a difficult situation or a painful experience, we’re usually too incapacitated by the burden or encumbered by the pain to find the sugar . . . let alone measure it out and pour it into the bitter recipe that’s facing us.  We’re really not able to do it on our own, and so, I believe this saying is lacking a sentence. It should read:  “When life hands you lemons, hand them over to God.  He is the consummate lemonade maker.”

“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.” (Romans 8:28)

Has life recently handed you some lemons? If so, I encourage you to hand them over to God, wait, and “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4) It may be a quick fix . . . or it could take a lifetime. Only the Lemonade Maker knows the time that will be required.  But like a little child, as your Father works on your behalf, just cling to His apron, hide in His shadow, and listen to Him sing. I am your hiding place; I will protect you from trouble and surround you with songs of deliverance.” (Psalm 32:7)

— Cheri Henderson

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