Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Faith, Fun, Fashion, & Family

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thankful He"ART"

Often I struggle with negative thoughts within myself that I must wrestle with on a daily basis. Being Thankful in every circumstance is an exercise of faith. Sometimes our "muscles" in faith get weak and tired, inviting negativism and pity to take over. Once we believe these lies and negative words inside our minds, they are sprung from out mouth. Once released, Satan (John 8:44) grabs a hold of them and gets creative, taking us down creative roads of doubt and dread with no hope in sight.
Today is a day that we should be exercising our faith the most. I pray that it be a spiritual fitness boost to prepare each one of you for the hope that is coming. The birth of The Savior from our own Selfish Negativism has come to clean our sinful slates. When Satan has made a foot on our thoughts or actions, it strangles our hope and joy like weeds. Ask Jesus to weed your thoughts and clean out your garden in your heart, so that hope can grown tall reaching for the Truth and the Light. May your garden produce much fruit for others to eat and taste to see how sweet the Truth is (Psalm 34:8).

God shared a Word of Truth to me in one of my states of pitiful faithlessness. He showed me Ephesians 4:13. I read the entire chapter and let it take root in my heart until I really digested the meaning of it in my life at this point I am in.
God was showing me that it's not about ME. He has greater plans for the Kingdom. If I want to be a part of it, then I need to get over myself and focus on greater things. He will pull us through whatever we are going through if we just keep being obedient to His will (being thankful, sharing the Truth, and loving others). I needed to get out of my bottle, break the glass surrounding my comfort, reach out, be a light to others, stop being so immature and use what He has done for me in the past to grow out of the glass. When we take on Christ and all that He stands for, it is no longer about US. It is not longer about trying to make this life on Earth "fair". It's not about "what we deserve"! We deserve NOTHING! We are sinful. Christ was not... but He lived the most Unfair life in history. He hung like  a prisoner and plead guilty for what we did, do and will do. Without Him, we are nothing.

Unity and Maturity in the Body of Christ
Ephesians 4
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says:
“When he ascended on high,
    he took many captives
    and gave gifts to his people.”...
 11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Ship in a bottle-
A person in their own bottle of faith, deciding what to take from the Word and what to leave.
An immature Christian. In their own world, not contributing to the Kingdom of Christ, but more subtracting in their lack of faith, not sharing the faith, not stepping out of their comfort for Him.
James 1:6
"But let him ask in faith, never wavering; for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind."
Ephesian 4:14
" Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. "

Christ is the source of light from which out light comes from. Nothing can be hidden from His light.
Christ's Light, His word, guidance, searching shepherd
Psalm 119:105
"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path."

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden."
Hebrew 4:13
"Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account."
Kingdom of God, the believers here on earth working together to build the kingdom.
A city lit on a hill for the lost to see. This kingdom includes those working on earth and those working as witnesses in the clouds in the unseen spiritual realm around us.
Biblical Backing

Luke 17:20-21 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:
21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

John 14:2
My Father's house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?
Hebrews 12

12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Christ's Comfortable Cottage

 I dream of a little cottage in the woods, hidden behind the safety of tall trees. Safely surrounded by the Creator's work. I cannot wait for the day that this hope becomes reality. I cannot wait for the day I can sit on the shady porch, listen to the birds, sip my coffee and create for my Creator. This day may or may not come, but hope is still present. It is not the physical things of this world that should comfort us... a home is not our comfort just as a pastor is not the "church". It is "He alone that is my refuge, my place of safety, my God in whom I trust." We cannot count on this world to fulfill our hopes and dreams. But my heart is ok with knowing this. I know that when I reach my final destination, comfort with surround me continually in the beauty of His Light.

Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”
Surely he will save you
    from the fowler’s snare
    and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
    nor the plague that destroys at midday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
    ten thousand at your right hand,
    but it will not come near you.
You will only observe with your eyes
    and see the punishment of the wicked.
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
    and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
    no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
    you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
14 “Because he[b] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;
    I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call on me, and I will answer him;
    I will be with him in trouble,
    I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
    and show him my salvation.

Rest In Him
Breathe deep, give thanks, give him your burdens, trust him, ask for peace, be still, rest in the comfort of His presence. 

Psalms 23:1
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. 4Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5
God of All Comfort
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.[a]

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Doodle Windows

We have these curved windows in our house that I am not sure how to dress.i do not care for the 80's fan blinds much, attempted a stained glass thing (failure), but really did not want it empty. 

When I taught middle school art years ago, we did some really cool window art that let the light shine through the negative spaces of the designs..,

This was my design for classroom window, poster board with cut out designs. 

My home-----
(Above: circles in various sizes with patterns in between)

Inspired my above design. 

I had white acrylic paint and little bitty brushes. I love to doodle... So, I did it. 

The first window I did, months back in kitchen. 

Succulents above entry. 

Laundry room window. 

Monday, June 20, 2016

The Guarded Path

So many times when we are walking in faith, we are tempted to just take the easy wide road... Cause everybody else is, right? Nobody's looking, right?

Whether everyone is doing it or nobody on earth will see you... Father Above will!

The same for doing good things. We may refrain from doing something nice too because nobody is there to give us praise. So, we just don't do it. 

The bible says that God sees everything, good or bad. The good that we do without getting earthly praise is actually the good that matters eternally. The earthly praise we get will be just that, earthly. 

Trust God! When you walk by faith, you do not walk by sight! It's not about the praise we see here or consequences for the unseen wrongs we choose to do. 
It's about God seeing, Heaven's perspective of our earthly life. 

In the end, if we are choosing the right way, God promises in His word that He will guard the path for us. So, if sneaky snakes are hiding in the bushes then trust God has it in His hands. You can walk with ease. 

Related Verses: 
Matthew 7:14 "But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it."

Hebrew 4:13 "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account."

Romans 12:2 "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will"

Matthew 6:2-4“So when you [a]give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But when you [b]give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,so that your [c]giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

2 Corinthians 5:6- "So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord"

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Billy Button DIY

I love Billy Button flowers!!!
But they can be very costly to buy fresh and I found them costly to buy faux as well! This girl is cheap... I mean creatively thirifty, so if I can't afford it...
These were my flowers in the wedding boquet. I have all sorts, but this time I just wAnted the Billy buttons. 

So I pulled out my supplies. 
Yarn (yellow, whites, holds), scissors. Grapevine wire, fork, and vase. 
Using your fingers, fork, or anything that has a slit in middle 
Wrap Yarn around about 30 times 
(the more times, the fuller the Pom)

Tie a short piece sound the middle of the bundle. Tie tightly more than once. 
Use the wire to tie in with the small piece. 
Fold over wire to keep flower in place. 

You can also use two yarns at once doing less rounds around the fork to have a multi colored Pom. 

After center is tied tight, cut the outside loops of each petal to make into may multiple strands instead of 1 long piece of yarn. 
 If puff is not round, trim ends of yarns to add the round form. 
Put Billy buttons in a vase and you are done!!!

Starting Fresh...

Pray... Change... Adjust... Pray...
Change... Adjust... Repeat until forever! 

The last 2 years have been a constant adjustment. New town, new job, new husband, new church, new home, new pets & new attitude. Though some things change, some still stay the same; faith, family, art, projects, 

Making some art...

Hanging with my hotty Toddy...
Drop the kids off! It's date night!
Date night,  Saw Dr. Dog in Austin... 

Spending time with family...
Getting to know 
Lucy & Ethel (our dogs)...

Painting Rainbows...
Painting g rocks...
Making our new house a home by
Painting cabinets...

Painting furniture...
Painting kitchen furniture...
If the little monkeys won't leave you alone, just feed them bananas to keep them busy. Or, give them a can or paint and a brush?! 
I get by with a little help from my friends...
This barn table was A little to "barnish" for fresh look. Hit it with Sherman Williams privlage green. 
Playing in playroom...

Ughhh... Changed my mind!
Let's try it again

Much better! 
Moving to the backyard 
with a paint bucket or two...

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Faith through the Flood

In obedience the boat was built,
while others were living sinfully with no guilt.
My Father showed me how to construct our new home
that would soon float on ocean's great foam.
The flood came as the home sat on dry land
the water coming closer we were now on the shore's sand.
Our foundation moved to a fluid new song
none of us knowing the chorus so long.
Here we were for what seemed forever
swaying side to side in this wet weather.
When will it end?
A dove I will send.
To see if there is any land poking through this endless wave.
Bird just returns to it's only place to rest.
This floating home it favors best.
Till he comes back to me with a limb of a tree,
I know we must float faithfully.
I want to see some sign of this season's end,
to know another perch for this dove I send.
Where is the light in this boat we reside,
Where is God's face, must the sun hide?
Is there beauty below that will be revealed in HIs time?
Is there a mountain of mass to where we can climb?
Lord show us the Earth solid and dry
my tears turned to happiness, with passion I'll cry.
Ill rub the dirt on my face
when I'm done with this race.
Lord in Your time I know,
for I trust there is beauty below.
Ecclesiastes 3:11
Finished my rainy flood day picture. It was nice to have the day off and get some free creative energy out. Houston has been underwater for the last 2 says. Flash floods have closed down schools, brought water into homes, shut down roads, businesses and even lead to 5 or more deaths.
We have been blessed as a family to have not had our home hurt by the floods. But we are a rare case. This picture is from being stuck at home for 2 days from work and school. It is partly inspired by the storm itself but other things as well..

 This was inspired by pastor Frankie's sermons (of Spirit Filled Celebration Church of the Woodlands's Ark Series) , a necklace an anonymous friend gave me 2 years ago, new blessings & the flood today. It's about Gods promises to us, His time vs. ours, being patient when we feel like we are drowning, trusting that He has something below the surface of the water waiting & renewal. The verse it is based on is Ecclesiastes 3:11.

Never Thirst Again

The Painting
The drawing
So, how did this painting come about? Hmmmm. Well, first of all I love succulents. Not only are they beautifully unique, they are also easy to take care of.
I have been "thirsty" to draw more succulents in a way of their nature representing faith. Since God gave me the gift of creativity, He often gives me images to draw and draws out of me a reason to connect it to Him. This is my way of personal worship, to Create for my Creator. So, I had the image and idea, but I wondered why He wanted me to create this image... so, I researched.

On Wikipedia I read this...

"The habitats of these water preserving plants are often in areas with high temperatures and low rainfall. Succulents have the ability to thrive on limited water sources, such as mist and dew, which makes them equipped to survive in an ecosystem which contains scarce water sources."
So... I started thinking..... connecting the spiritual and creative dots.
Succulents are able to withstand harsh heat and little water each day. They can survive in the desert where they are constantly getting beat down by the sun and then the cold nights. They adapt to where they are.
They take what little water they get in life and hold it inside to get them through dry times. Thirsty people are drawn to them knowing they hold treasure inside.
Faith is like this.
Jesus told the Woman at the well that He had "living water" that He could give her.
She did not understand what he meant because she was thinking in the "physical".
It is a water that our physical bodies do not understand.
It is a spiritual water that keeps our hearts content to hold onto our Faith when there are other things in life tempt us, wear us down or make us doubt... when we are living in a spiritual drought.
Years ago I knew about the "living water" growing up in church and with a very Spiritual mother, but my worldly mind couldn't wrap around the spiritual concept.
Not until I came a wife, mother and adult could I really come to a point where I was "thirsty" for that 'Living water" and curious to go to the "well".
My "well" was a spiritual retreat called Kairos in Dallas, Texas.
This is where my real spiritual walk began to go deep.
God spoke to me! I know some may think I am crazy, but it's true.
His words He spoke to me on that spirit filled day I have help in my
skin like a succulent holds water. If that is the ONLY "living Water" I get for the rest of my life here on earth, it is enough for the harshest desert. I knew that day that His love was real.
I fell madly deeply in love with Christ when His love for me was revealed.
My heart was sealed!
Read about my Kairos experience here...

As an artist, I love the beauty of a succulent plant. I really do not have a green thumb, probably because of my ADD and lack of remembering to water plants. I do love green though. I do love plants and feel that without them in a space it is empty. Living without life just doesn't make sense.
I have used succulents in my classroom for the Rodeo Art theme for years because it teaches the kids about contour line and also helps them appreciate the unique visual characteristics of the plant.
My Daughter & student working on her succulent

Daughter and Mother succulents above...

See my students' below here...

1st and 2nd grade cactus

4th and 5th grade cactus

I hope this has inspired you to create for your Creator, draw, paint, read the WOrd, pray or at least think. Please let me know your thoughts. Your words, like His, drive me to create more.

1 Thessalonians 5:11               
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
Hebrews 10:23-25               
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.