Fruit of the month: Melons

An ice-cold slice of watermelon, cantaloupe, or honeydew can be especially refreshing on a hot summer’s day. Melons have a high water content and are fairly low in calories (a one-cup serving of cubed melon has only about 45 to 60 calories), making them a good choice for a sweet treat if you’re watching your weight.

Watermelon contains several nutrients known to benefit heart health. One is lycopene, an antioxidant that may help improve cholesterol levels and blood pressure. The other is citrulline, an amino acid that may boost levels of nitric oxide, a substance known to relax blood vessels and lower blood pressure.

How do you choose a ripe watermelon? They usually have a light green or white “bald spot” where the melon rested on the soil. When that spot changes to a pale yellow or cream color, the melon is ripe. Also, an unripe melon has a glossy rind that becomes more satin or matte as the fruit ripens. Thumping on the fruit to listen for a deep, heavy thud isn’t a very reliable method, according to the USDA.

Bible verses for today’s meditation and inspiration: Matthew E. McLaren

The days of our lives are seventy years; and if by reason of strength they are eighty years, Yet their boast is only labor and sorrow; For it is soon cut off, and we fly away. Psalm 90:10 (NKJV)

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10 NIV

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31 NIV

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:26 NIV
I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 NIV

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Isaiah 40:29 NIV

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10 NIV

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7 NIV

But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:3 NIV

Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. 1 Chronicles 16:11 NIV

I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:1-2 NIV

But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. Psalm 59:16 NIV

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV

Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you. Jeremiah 32:17 NIV

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