December 30, 2020  (Post #57)

(From Journal #7:  October 21, 2006)

Well, Lord, we did it!  Last night was the auction and our painting was the highest selling thing in the whole event!  Two people got into a bidding war and it sold for $3,300.00!  I’d set a minimum bid of $500 and was afraid no one would even bid that much.  Lord, how awesome are You???  I’m so excited to be able to help raise and give every dime of this money to fight cancer, the very thing the enemy wants to destroy me with.  Take that, devil!  My next CT scan is coming up in late November and I’m standing on Your Word that I am healed.

I humbly thank You for allowing me to be Your “brush.”  You’ve shown me that I can be used for the Kingdom of God.  I just need to be obedient, have faith in You and then in myself, not in my own strength but Yours.  I pray that “we,” namely You, do many wonderful paintings together to continue to bless and advance Your Kingdom in ways that I can’t even predict.   

This was a breakthrough moment and another layer added to Your Pearl…

Matthew 13:45:  Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. 

1 Peter 4:10:  As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

Ephesians 2:10:  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Just be the Brush

December 13, 2020   (Post #56)

(From Journal #7:  October 9, 2006)

Lord, as I struggled to “see” what needed to be done on this painting, the Holy Spirit spoke the most powerful and beautiful words into my spirit.  This is what I heard:  “In the spiritual realm, you are My canvas.  In the natural world, you are My brush.  Just be the brush.”  Once I heard that, I realized that I am not responsible for how this painting turns out.  You are the Artist; You just want me to be Your brush.  You showed me that I am a painting, a spiritual canvas You work on.  I’m also a physical brush You use to paint pictures for others.  Every time I got stuck, frustrated and tense, I’d hear You saying, “Just be the brush” and I’d relax, get out of my head, and just paint. We are artists together.

You’ve guided my eyes and my hands and we’ve gotten so much done.  I know it’s Your strength, not mine, that has seen me through.  I was so leery of not only painting glass, but on such a large canvas.  But You pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to trust You alone, and of course, You didn’t let me down.  The confidence You are building in me is great – but it’s not confidence in myself that “I alone” can do anything.  It is confidence in myself that I can do anything You’ve called me to do as long as I rely on You.  I designed my own labels for the wine bottles and even added a cork lying on the table.  Today, I signed it!  We got this done in 9 days!  Glory to You!!!  I’m really pleased at how it turned out, and I named it “A Pearl from the Vine…”

I’ve questioned so many times how could You use me to be a blessing to the Kingdom?  And now, here You are helping me paint a picture to raise money to fight cancer!  May this painting be anointed and bring a huge sum to beat cancer!  AMEN!

Philippians 4:13:  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Ephesians 2:10:  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Colossians 3:23:  And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.

Isaiah 64:8:  But now, O LORD, You are our Father; We are the clay and You our potter; and we are the work of Your hand.

Releasing My Artist Self

March 15, 2020   (Post #31)

(From Journal #3:  September 12, 2005)

There’s nothing like cancer to make one reassess our lives about whether we’re fulfilling God’s plan for us?  I know He wants me to paint. I found a wonderful art institute in the town square and began a “beginner’s” art class last week since I’ve not painted in years.  There, I learned about another class I’m joining in a couple of days (that actually started last week) called The Artists’ Way.  I actually already had the book because someone once-upon-a-time had recommended it but I’d never done anything with it.  Isn’t that so like me and so much of my problem?  So many good intentions and desires, but nothing accomplished?

It asks you to do “Morning Pages” which is easy for me because I already journal.The Artists’ Way appears to be a bit like a “12-step AA” program for struggling artists.  That is clearly me; I never have been able to really call myself an artist.  I’ve allowed fear and insecurity to hold me back and make me think I can’t do it, and not qualified or worthy to say, “I am an artist.”  My mind is often my worst foe.  I get off track of what God wants me to do.  I get so overwhelmed by day-to-day “junk” that I never get around to painting.  I feel like a mouse on a wheel; my legs are spinning and I’m working hard but I never get anywhere…

I want and need to feel like I do something that matters. I want to have passion and excitement about my days.  I want to paint beautiful pictures without fear of rejection, without fear of perfection, without fear of any kind.  You have given me part of Your artistic love, but I haven’t fulfilled Your plan.  I want to and choose to!  I believe this class will help me.  I hope to bring You joy by “getting it” and finally allowing You to create beautiful works through my hands on canvas or however You choose.

It’s for Your pleasure, and if others appreciate it, that’s great.  But it’s not for the praises of man I need to pursue.  It’s You I want to bring pleasure and joy to, You! Am I Your canvas, Lord?  If I am to fulfill my purpose and plan I must surrender to You, listen to You, and allow You to show me the way.

Exodus 35:31-32:  …and He has filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, in cutting jewels for setting, in carving wood, and to work in all manner of artistic workmanship.

Ephesians 2:10:  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Proverbs 22:29:  Do you see a man who excels in his work?  He will stand before kings; he will not stand before unknown men.