Soil, Roots, Fruit

Scan

In my Tuesday morning bible study, we are working through Conversation Peace by Mary A. Kassian. It is a study about the power of speech… what we say… how we say it. It is hitting kind of close to home.

This week’s lesson began with:

Screen Shot 2016-03-20 at 9.33.00 PM

That is clear. Ugly heart, ugly words. Sweet heart, sweet words.

She offers a great analogy for how our insides can contaminate what we show on the outside. When a plant has root rot and the leaves turn ick, it is not the leaves that cause it, but it is rotting roots that cause the leaves to turn brown and ugly. I did not know that when your plant gets root rot, you have to also replace the soil. The disease remains in the soil, will infect the roots of the new plant, and then the leaves or fruit.

The three parts in this equation are:

  • the soil: our deepest beliefs and values…which affects…
  • the roots: our attitudes and thoughts…which affect
  • the fruit: our words and behavior

This is one reason I study God’s word. There is always someone being led by the Holy Spirit, who might offer me a fresh viewpoint.

I know that I cannot keep my soil clean or my roots disease free.

Screen Shot 2016-03-20 at 9.51.34 PM

But, we belong to a loving God who will take care of our soil and our roots if we turn to Him with our whole hearts. He will plant us and not pluck us up. Our fruit can be good as He builds us up, and we know Him more.

Here we are (you and I), in my journaling bible, growing our fruit in clean soil with healthy roots.

Scan

Guard your heart… (Proverbs 4:23)

2016Owl

Wisdom for 2016 and Beyond!

Scan 2

God has announced my word for 2016. Wisdom. Last year (2015), God put some people with problems in my life. As the elder of all of these matches, at times, I was expected to come up with, and share some hard earned wisdom. Ugh. How to answer why everything in your life is horrible? What to say to someone who does not seem to make one good decision? And how to explain to a new believer that some Christians are absolutely horrible to other people? All of this is so far out of my comfort zone. I just want to sit at my table and paint or string beads.

Anyway, at this point in my life, I probably should pack on some wisdom. And recently, I found that (hallelujah!) I maybe, possibly have gained some along the way. I guess it is time.

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 7.28.36 PM.png

I am looking forward to where God takes me and what He teaches me.

Last year, I journaled all kinds of trees for my word “thrive.” This year? Owls!

Scan 1

Print and color if it speaks to you. Print on watercolor paper if you want to use watercolor pencils like I did. Enjoy!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding (very wise!), Proverbs 3:5-6

2016Owl

 

 

 

Thrive?

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM

The first week of 2015, I started using this journal drawing to sign off my blog posts. “Thrive” was my word of the year.

Scan

I also added this to my bible, at the same verses: Jeremiah 17: 7-8.

Screen Shot 2016-01-04 at 5.40.17 PM

The first week of 2015, God gave me Jeremiah 17: 7-8. That scripture told me “blessed is the man that trusts in the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water that will not be anxious in a year of drought.” For me, not having a job almost all year, was a seriously potential drought situation. I drew trees all year in my journal to keep that promise locked in my mind. Turns out, He was faithful to those words in many many ways.

I thought God gave me the word because in January 2015, I was barely surviving the job I had. Turns out, I lost that job in the spring and have been without one the rest of the year. God gave me that word to teach me to thrive in a situation that normally would have been hard to merely survive.

In 2015, I did more than survive, I was able to thrive.

Now, to keep what I have learned throughout 2015 as I head into 2016 and a new word on which to focus. Stay tuned….

Are you reflecting on a 2015 word? I would love to hear about it!

Trust in Him when you are afraid, Psalm 56:3.

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Light of the World

Scan 1

Screen Shot 2015-12-20 at 1.09.48 PM

In this season, we are celebrating the birth of the Light of the World. This morning, Pastor Dave spoke to us about what it means to be in the Light and remain in the Light. If you look it up, there are many verses about Light, the Light of the World, the Light of Life, the Children of Light…. It would be a great topic on which to do a study, or to make it your word of the year.

But for today, Light in this verse means “the illuminator of men”. Jesus. The Light of the World.

In this section of James 8, Jesus is speaking to the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem, during the Festival of Shelters. During this festival, huge lamps were placed in the courtyard in the Temple. They were lit to remind the people of the pillars of fire that led them out of the wilderness. In James 8:12, Jesus is declaring Himself to be God.

As the Light (God), Jesus shows us the truth, gives us understanding of Him and His word, helps us to see His will and shows us how to follow it. But, there is one big thing about being able to see light. You must have eyes to see it. There is no light if a person cannot or will not see it.

So, together this Christmas season, let’s practice seeing the Light….looking toward Him, reading His word, following His teaching, asking for His will to be revealed. Let’s try not to get caught up in  the craziness of parking space rage, overspending and overeating, making there perfect cookies and all of the stuff that creeps into Christmas, but let’s see Him. If we can do it this week, we can do it any week!

Follow Him (John 8:12),

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM

Be the One!

Scan 2

This scripture was part of this morning’s message at church. And what perfect timing! I think we all have giving thanks on the mind during the month of November, especially the week of Thanksgiving celebrations. But, how important is it to give thanks to God always?

I journaled this in my bible during the service so I would not forget. It is finished with watercolor pencils and my water pen.

Screen Shot 2015-11-29 at 3.56.09 PM

This is a great story. Read it a couple times and make note of what you learn. Feel free to trace my drawing for your own, or use the idea to draw your own.

Scan 2

This is what I learned from these verses in Luke. Please share your insights!

  • The ten men in the village had no reservations about asking Jesus for help. They even had to yell from a distance to accomplish that, because they were not allowed to be near other people.
  • Jesus sent them to the priests. Normally, He spoke words over a sick person, or touched him. But in this instance, He was asking for the lepers to go to the priests, requiring some faith on their parts.
  • Only one of the ten returned to Jesus to thank Him for healing him of leprosy. This one was a Samaritan, who would not normally dare to go see the Jewish priests. He believed Jesus would heal him in whatever way He chose.
  • Jesus noticed the rest had not returned to thank Him. He did not demand thanks, but He noticed when it was not given. His own chosen people, who knew the prophesy that told them He was the Son of God who had come to save them, did not understand what had really happened.
  • Jesus wanted the Samaritan who gave Him the glory, to know that he was not only healed in body, but in his soul, because he believed.

It makes me think about how many times I ask Him for things. And how many times I forget to thank Him for answering my prayers. I am His chosen child, I have faith that He will answer my prayers, but I never want to forget or take for granted the biggest gift He has given me. His grace has saved my soul. He notices when I am not thankful.

Bless His name, Psalm 100: 4

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM

 

Book of Thanks, Page 9

Scan 2

How can I not be thankful that His lovingkindness, His mercy, lasts forever? He never gets tired of bestowing mercy on me. He never takes a vacation from it. No matter what I have done or what mess I have gotten myself into, He is faithful to be merciful. I pray to continually learn from His example.

Scan 1

The pattern for printing and coloring….

Bless His name, Psalm 100: 5

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM

Book of Thanks, Pages 6,7,8

Scan 2

Screen Shot 2015-11-16 at 8.42.25 PM

Page 6

At the very moment I am posting this, a friend of mine is going through some really bad stuff. I feel sad, mad and kind of sick. It is pretty hard to think about rejoicing and giving thanks. But lo and behold, this is exactly when God speaks, right? I can rejoice in my salvation, hope and a future. Certainly, I am praying for mercy for my friend. If I try to have a prayerful attitude all the time, and keep God in the forefront of my consciousness, that is when it becomes easier to pray short spontaneous prayers. And of course, I really have so much for which to be thankful. Even when it seems like evil trumps, I still have God Almighty as my Heavenly Father, and know that He is in control of everything that is happening. It is about focus, right?

Screen Shot 2015-11-16 at 9.13.28 PM

Page 7

That right there? It makes me so very thankful. I have no doubts about the goodness of God and that he is mercy is everlasting. And it makes me sing the song, Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good. His love endures forever.”

Screen Shot 2015-11-16 at 9.16.23 PM

Page 8

Worry = lack of trust in God. When I have so much on my mind, that thing where I try to replace it with God on my mind is oh so very good. Some days it is easier than others, but the days I succeed carry so much less stress. When I get a flash of emotion, or of the bad thing, I turn it immediately into a prayer. It doesn’t have to be a manifesto, just a short prayer to remind me that God has this. I am working on that this very night.

I love how God reminds and comforts. I should be on page 16 today….just a little behind…but today is the day that I needed to work on these three pages. Another reason to give thanks to the Lord and His scheduling.
Scan 1

Here is the printable pattern. Mine is 8 1/4″ tall and 7″ wide. You can see the lines to cut the piece into 3 parts. If you are not making a book, this make 3 nice size bookmarks. Color at will. I used watercolor pencils on watercolor paper, as usual. And I will put this into the book like it is one page.

Pray without ceasing, I Thessalonians 5: 17

Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 3.59.08 PM