anticipation, attitude, day to day, God first, influence, love, meeting needs, outreach, pleasing others, relationships, seeing beyond

under it all

Low Lily
Low Lily
As I started this piece, I found it hard to capture the full plant on such a small canvas while painting live. The stray bloom toward the bottom became the focus.

Many of God’s ways are not focused on what is bold and centered, but on what is underneath. The gems that He has tucked away for those who will take time to notice…

So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it. Colossians 3:12-14 MSG

Even as saints of the Most High God, we still need to be beautiful and lovely along the way.

attitude, blessings, encouragement, follow God, influence, Jesus, love, negative words, outreach, pleasing others, ponderings, real love, rejection, relationships

carry peace

6x6 encaustic  (wax & pigment)
6×6 encaustic
(wax & pigment)
One of the bigger lessons learned through my study of the armor, is on peace.

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. John 16:33

We often look so long on what is wrong we miss what is great.
We battle the darkness but forget to bring oil for our lamps.
We seek knowledge about Jesus yet never know ourselves as His beloved.

Being in this world and not of it may seem a difficult line to straddle but God shares such amazing tools with us.

And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Colossians 3:14-15

attitude, comfort zone, expectations, God is faithful, hope, joy, love, outreach, peace, ponderings, relationships

lightness of peace

Do you imagine a suit of armor to be comfy and easy to maneuver in?

Wiki shares the weight to be 33-55 pounds (15-25 kg). I suppose for the majority of warriors or those who work out, it’s not too much, but an everyday person would find it a hindrance.

As you read the Gospel of Peace, Jesus keeps sharing that we should feel the weight lifted from us; to find freedom, not heaviness. He tells us His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

Are you feeling burdened or light?

Most seem to focus on the darkness but He says in His Kingdom is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Ephesians 6:10

It’s really not about us…

faith, God first, influence, Jesus, love, ponderings, relationships, seeing beyond, wisdom

heart and soul

A friend shared today, “Many know about God, but they don’t know Him.”

What would your response be?

I think we frequently know about God with our MIND but not fully with our HEART and SOUL.

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Colossians 3:1-4 NIV

click to read MSG

In Deuteronomy 4:29 it says But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul.

These words are repeated in many verses including heart, soul, mind and strength…
the heart coming first.

What do you think?

attitude, God first, Holy Spirit, influence, Jesus, love, meeting needs, negative words, pleasing others, ponderings, real love, rejection, relationships, wisdom

measure of love

In the evening of life, we will be judged on love alone.

St John of the Cross

Matter of the Heart
Matter of the Heart

If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.

If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.

If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
1 Corinthians 13:1-7 MSG

attitude, blessings, expectations, faith, God is faithful, hope, Jesus, joy, love, negative words, peace, ponderings, praise, trust

lighten up

Free to Soar
Free to Soar
I remember when “lighten up” was used to get people to relax, chill or find a happy pill. Then I grew up and started understanding more of the “concerns” of life. I matured and got serious… probably too serious.

How long does it take us to unlearn our ways?
Can we really give it all God?
Is the yoke what He has given or what we have put on ourselves?

Jesus doesn’t seem to be sharing a lot of joy messages in John 16 but He does know the final outcome…

I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] John 16:33 AMP


What, then, shall we say in response to these things?
If God is for us, who can be against us?
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Romans 8:31, 37

attitude, comfort zone, faith, follow God, Holy Spirit, influence, Jesus, love, pleasing others, rejection, relationships, seeing beyond, trust

sharing glory

Even in Storms
Even in Storms

The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
Romans 8:16-17

Uh oh – there is that word again…suffering.

What does it mean Lord that we share in your suffering?
It means you have to be willing to give up things.
It means you might feel abandoned.
It means the road is not always smooth.

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
1 John 3:1

Spoiled or favored children are frequently not liked by others. Think of Joseph, Jesus, the Prophets. Richly blessed and often persecuted.

adventure, blessings, comfort zone, expectations, follow God, God is faithful, Holy Spirit, hope, love, rejection, relationships, trust

who leads

At His Feet
At His Feet

For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”
Romans 8:14-16

It is interesting and sometimes scary to hear talk about being led by the Spirit but so many places in His Word are showing the necessity and benefits of embracing and recognizing the work and power of the Holy Spirit that resides in all who are God’s children.

We need the fullness of the Trinity – Father, Son and the Holy Spirit who is our guide, counsel and more…

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 2 Corinthians 3:17

A wonderful song Abba by Jonathan David Hesler

blessings, day to day, follow God, influence, inspiration, love, negative words, peace, relationships, wisdom

power of words

bring joy
bring joy
“The voice of the Lord…” is powerful, majestic, breaks, strikes, shakes and twists. Psalm 29

In Genesis, His words brought things into being.
His breath is what gave man life.

Is God still speaking and breathing?
Are we discounting the power of His word and promises?

“Life and death are in the power of the tongue…” Proverbs 18:21

Do we take our own words seriously?
What does God think of what comes out of our mouths?

In Luke 9, James and John knew the power of their words and were going to call down fire to destroy. Jesus rebuked them.

His greatest desire is for us to love Him and love others.

It has definitely made me more aware of my words…

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29

attitude, blessings, day to day, God first, influence, living in the past, love, negative words, relationships, renewal, self help

mind over matter

Do you find some days you wake up with an attitude?

Maybe it’s every Monday, the weather, or dentist. Most of us have things that trigger negative thoughts. It’s a free country so let’s voice them, right?

Recently I was feeling one of those patterns again. And I don’t like having them. I told the person I was with that I needed a time out. I think they thought it was them but it was me. I found 10 minutes with God and felt released. When I returned, I apologized and shared what was going on in my own mind. We had great conversation and it was gone. The atmosphere changed for the better.

How are you affecting the atmosphere around you?
Is it just our bad day when we carry it around others?

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3:1-2

I’ve heard of others doing negativity fast’s. It’s making me more aware of what really matters to my mind and what I want to focus on. How about you?