Peace is Yours


Peace. Shalom. Being at ease internally and externally.

My word for 2014 is peace. This year I have been studying how to find peace, and how to hold on to it.

Some things I have learned about peace:

  • Having peace does not mean that the problems have all been solved. Having peace means that the problems have all been given to God with faith that He will handle them, and so they are no longer viewed as problems.
  • God’s peace is always available to me. God is unchanging and the Holy Spirit does not take a vacation. So, if I am missing peace, it’s me causing it.
  • When I am most in need of peace, the fastest way there is to focus on the proven character of God. There are plenty of examples of that in the bible.

When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were asked if they were ready to worship Nebudchadnezzar’s golden idol or be thrown into the fiery furnace, they said,

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From the boys, I learn that the peace they have about being thrown into the furnace comes from the fact that no matter the outcome, God is in control of the situation. He is bigger than the fire and the furnace. The boys were not worried, they were at ease. They had peace.

I know peace jewelry reminds some people of a turbulent time in the 70s, but it reminds me that peace is mine whenever I need it.

You can make these peace sign earrings in 10 minutes. If you have never made jewelry before, you can make these in 10 minutes. If you have made a zillions pieces of jewelry, you can make these in 10 minutes. No tools are required but a pair of scissors.

You need:

  • 2 peace sign charms: any color, any size
  • 2 beads: any color, any size (I had these gorgeous jasper beads. Use any beads that make you happy)
  • 2 ear wires: any color
  • 8″ of embroidery floss: any color
  • scissors
  • clear drying glue (optional)


10 minutes. Start now:

1. Separate the floss so you have two pieces of three strands each. String a charm to the center of one piece and tie a knot to hold it in place.


2. Hold both ends of the floss together. String a bead over both.


3. Separate the floss pieces. Slide an ear wire over one piece. Knot floss ends together, keeping the ear wire close to the bead.


4. Trim the ends of the floss.

Repeat steps 1-4 to make the other earring. You can add a tiny drop of glue, if you want, on the knot at the ear wire. Use jewelry glue or any glue that dries clear.

You’re done!

Do you have a favorite story of personal peace from the bible? Who and what is it about? Share!

Pray about everything. Philippians 4:6,

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Standing on the Promises of God


(colored with watercolor pencils, see tutorial)

I love this old hymn, Standing on the Promises of God. Recently, I read someplace that God has made almost 7500 promises to us in His word. I don’t know if that number is accurate, but there is no doubt that God makes us many promises and keeps every one.


(colored with colored pencils)

 Which of God’s promises do you need today to get you through? There is one for everything you need…not everything you want, but everything you need.

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(colored with markers)

Some of God’s unfailing promises:

God will keep His eye on you and teach you how you should live. Psalm 32:8

Nothing can separate you from God’s love. Romans 8:38-39

He will always forgive you. Just confess. I John 1:9

He will neither fail nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:8

He will help you endure temptation and will provide a way to escape it. I Corinthians 10:13

His peace, even when it makes no sense to feel peaceful, will guard your heart if you ask. Philippians 4: 6-7

He is your refuge, strength, and help. There is nothing to fear. Psalm 46:1-3

But my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. Isaiah 40:29-32

If you seek Him, you will find Him. Deuteronomy 4:29

You can find the other 7490 promises in His word. Google or look in your concordance for the address of what you need.

And write the promise you love or need, on the back of the bookmark you are going to make.

You need:

  • cardstock or 90 lb watercolor paper (8 1/2 x 11″)
  • the free pattern
  • something with which to color in the pattern: colored pencils, markers, watercolor pencils (and water brush), crayons, pastels, whatever you like
  • hole punch
  • scissors
  • ribbon to tie in the hole
  • Optional: cardstock or scrapbook paper (in a color or pattern you like) for a backing, and whatever paper adhesive you like

Make it:

1. Put your cardstock or watercolor paper in the printer. Print the pattern. Size it as desired. Trim on the lines.

2. Color in or out of the lines!

3. Glue to a backing of colored paper if you want.

4. Punch a hole in one end. Tie a ribbon or piece of yarn in the hole.

Stick it in your bible or any book, and every time you look at it, remember God’s promises to you.

Be still and know…. Psalm 46:10,

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The Journey, not the Destination


If you read this post, you know that I attended the She Speaks Conference in July in Charlotte. I met many talented writers and speakers, and each person had her own fascinating reason for attending.

From the first day I heard about the conference, I saw God making a way for me to go. To attend this for 4 days cost more money than I had to spend. It is no coincidence that I had just enough airline miles left for a ticket to Charlotte, and just enough hotel points for 3 nights. I imagined God, who had this planned many years ago when I was traveling a lot for work….”Yes, girlie, you are sick of airports and hotels and silly fellow travelers who read your book along with you over your shoulder, and sing drunken country songs in the seat next to you, but be patient because 6 years from now, you will use these points when I call you to a special opportunity.”

Isn’t it awesome to know God had it planned out all along?

The best part of the conference for me was having appointments with two publishers. It is not easy to make this happen on your own, so I took full advantage because I think I have a book or two in me.  Both publishers were encouraging and positive in their comments. Both of them gave me next steps to follow if I wish. Both of them told me to start building a following of people who will enjoy and benefit from what I have to offer.

No doubt, I went to the publisher appointments secretly hoping for one of them to declare I am the next hot writer and offer me a contract right there. And later, when I talked to God about it, He gave me total peace about my lack of contract.

You see, I am type A and task oriented all the way. God knows I could sit down and write a book pretty easily, but that is not His plan for me. He wants me to take a journey out of my introverted, happy to be at home alone for days, personality. He wants me to enjoy the journey to the destination. So, I will teach. I will share. I will meet lots of women on my blog, and theirs. I will learn things. I will build relationship, both with Him and you. Even though I was ready for that contract, He was not.

I really hope you will join me on the journey. I don’t know where it will go or how long it will take. But, I do know I need company and He has things for us to learn.

Knock on the door (Matthew 7:7),


A Bottle Washed Up Into My Mailbox



I got a message in a bottle this week. In my mailbox! It was from the creative and daring Women’s Ministries Director at church.

Did you know you can mail stuff like this? It costs a bit more and takes a little longer because it can’t go through the canceling machine, but yes, you can mail just about anything. Once, I mailed flip flops with invitations on them.




This is what was inside my bottle. It is the closest I have gotten to a beach all summer. The scroll is a listing of fall classes and ministry opportunities for women.

By now, you know how I feel about visual helps. To me, this mailer says, “Meet us in class and we will have a fun and creative semester!” Works for me!

Walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8),



Chalk it Up!


One of the main points of Art from the Word is to keep God’s word a constant in our lives by helping us to remember it. Being able to physically see God’s word helps accomplish that. How about writing God’s word on the wall….well, on a chalkboard?


This is an easy project that has a lot of room for your creativity and style.

You will be able to write the verse of the day, or the verse of the week on it. Put it in a place that you will see it, and then read it or repeat it to yourself when you walk by. It works for kids, too!


This is basically what you need:

  • background board – I started with a 16″ x 20″ burlap covered board. I got it 80% off at Michaels, and could not resist it. You can use any board, cover it with paper or fabric or paint. You can also make it any size.
  • unfinished wood laser cut frame – about the same size as your background board.
  • small chalkboard that will fit inside the frame – I started with a scrap piece of wood and painted it with chalkboard spray paint. You could use a pre-made chalk board, a write on wipe off board, or a cork board.
  • acrylic paint for your frame
  • flat paintbrush to do the painting
  • Glue to put the pieces together. I used E6000. I love that stuff. Or, you can use a glue gun.
  • wire or ribbon (optional for hanging your chalkboard)
  • Drill to make holes in the top corners (if you are using wire or ribbon to hang it)
  • sawtooth hanger (optional, can go on the back to hang it)


You probably don’t need instructions for this. Just get all of the pieces ready: paint the frame, paint the chalkboard if you are doing it that way, cover or paint the background board if you don’t buy a ready-made. Glue all of the pieces together. Let the glue dry. Hang it up.

Notice my polka dots? I applied them with the end of my brush handle and a linen color paint. Dip into the pain, print on the frame. Really easy.

Be strong and courageous,


Salt and Light


the Salt of the Earth


and the Light of the World!

Last Sunday, the message at church was on Salt and Light. This is not a new lesson for me, as it is probably not for you either. But, it really made me think.

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I learned some things from Pastor Dave.

We know that to be salt is to be an example of Jesus…to be a blessing to others…to add flavor to your world.

And we know that to be light is to let others see God in you…that it is not always easy to show people who Jesus is…and that it is a choice to hide it or to let it shine.

And here is where I began to think. And I started writing a list of things I could do that would make me salt and light. What things have I done in the past that would qualify as salt and light? And what things am I doing now; ministries, serving, random acts of kindness, that make me salt or light?

Then it hit me. Probably because God told me. Being salt and light is not a list of activities. Being salt and light is a lifestyle. Shouldn’t it become such a part of my life that I no longer have to think about it because it is who I am? And when I don’t have to write a list of list of how to make myself salt and light, and when being a blessing to others and letting other people see God in me, are ingrained in my life, then I will be where God wants me to be. Salt and Light.

Are you there yet? How did you arrive? How will you get yourself there? Be aware of ways to be a blessing to people, of ways to share Jesus, to create relationships with people not in your sphere, to think about what your neighbor needs that she can’t do for herself, take groceries to the guy at church who is on crutches. You know what to do. God sets up Divine appointments for you all the time. When you find it hard to make it a part of who you are, remember that “fake it till you make it” is not a bad thing, and that a habit is built in 21 days. Start now with me?


To make the oh so very easy, salt and light project in the photos, you need a salt shaker, a wick, and some white granulated wax. This takes 30 seconds to make. Really.

Hold the wick in the center of the salt shaker. Pour the wax in to fill up the shaker. Trim the wick if it is too long.

If you want to make it an even better reminder, print out one of the verses above, punch a hole in the paper, and tie it around the salt shaker. These are an inexpensive give-away to go with a lesson on salt and light.

Set it on a shelf in the bathroom so when you see it every morning, you are reminded what it means to be salt and light, and how great it is going to be when you are there.

Listen to our teaching pastor at Calvary Baptist Church in Canton MI, Dave Riddle, on salt and light.

Share each other’s burdens (Galatians 6:2),


The One Who Goes Ahead


I am in Charlotte for the She Speaks Conference. I arrived today and was assigned the smallest car I have ever driven. It feels like driving my Dad’s lawnmower. Zippy and fun!

On the plane, I had a reassuring chat with God about where this is going…what I will take away from this conference…if I am ready for meetings and classes…what did I forget to prepare. In the end, I knew that it was not anything to worry about. So, I will go and enjoy the experience. God has been here before me and that’s all I need.

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Serve wholeheartedly (Ephesians 6:7),


Summer Art from the Word


This month, it has been a delight to teach a women’s class using the Helping Stones concept. The class is on the 5 Tuesday nights in July. Every night, we do a 30 minute devotional and chat about what we are learning and the things in it that we can apply to our lives.



These are some of the projects and we made to remind us of God’s words we are reading and studying….and also some of the awesome women who came each week and helped me feel comfortable at the front of the class.


 One night, we even had a little Reader’s Theater in which Bonnie was a shepherd. I am sure the fabulous prop helped her stay in character.





This past week, God reminded us that guarding our hearts is a very important responsibility that have been given to us. 

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We have taken that to heart. By making visual art reminders of what we are learning, or remembering, we are keeping God’s word close to us.

Several of the class members have told me what a great encouragement it is to see that piece of art hanging on the wall. Every time they walk by, it reminds them of God’s love, or God’s gifts.

Love one another (John 13: 34),