Tag Archives: Faith

My weakness

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My Weakness

I have not faired well in time of lock-down. You know the staying at home while the pandemic circulates the globe. When I say faired well I have been extremely lazy. I am not a highly motivated person even a moderately motivated person. I am at the lower end of any kind of scale on every level. I would think perhaps only the art wise scale I might be a little higher.

Art wise I have done some digital work and I am seeing improvement there and thankfully I am keeping that up.

I want to write and journal and thrill people with my writing skills it’s my favourite thing to do. Its just I have not found that easy.

I keep a diary the old book style and I am sad to say there are very few entries in that for 2020 😦 and that disappoints me. When I say thrill I find writing easier to flow with when I want to share things. Like my hearing loss/deafness there seems also a disability that hampers me in my communication skills in connecting with others via my writing and it is extremely disheartening.

Obviously in lock down you cannot see people. Well in my normal life I do not see people. But sadly even currently on-line and I am there every day.

Connections are not flowing here either. The one person online I do chat with. Its been probably our lowest period of chatting ever. The less you say… the less you do say. And it possibly is a miracle I can even write this right now. I think since my last blog post.. 25th April this will be the longest I have expressed myself except for long hours of digital painting but I don’t know painting just doesn’t say enough. But at least its something..

When nothing flows. No desire to speak or write even though I am still a feeling expressive soul you are really just existing.

I want too.. I mean I am aware of it. Just so easy to switch on Netflix or any other platform and watch it. I am so grateful for that though. Netflix, Stan, 7Plus which is Australian all have deaf captions and I enjoy watching people communicate and understand everything they are saying. It is almost like being around people and I do enjoy it. Soak in it. Enjoy the stories, get lost in it. Makes me feel part of something again. Something more then just myself. And it is an ease and there is no struggle to understand and I do not have to work at it or pursue people and wait for replies. Quite a few I text and message just do not answer. I think hearing people just do not put the same emphasis on how important answering texts and messages is to someone who cannot communicate in many other ways. I want to get frustrated with them.. But I fear they will stop altogether.

This magnetic poetry took ages. Just to write it first. And I wrote it first on my notes ap on my iphone. I wanted to get down how I am feeling as honestly as I can be it however it comes I cannot be picky. Its good for me to be honest somewhere. Its like I am breaking out of that big heavy prison that stifles my expressive soul. Then I had to condense it down to fit into a poem plus make it possible to display with as many words of my magnetic poetry sets as I can find. I have a spare few sheets of magnetic white paper that I can write a few words on that I do not have. You have no idea how much effort goes into getting this sort of thing out there. It really is a sludge match these days. It is probably why I am so lazy because it really is so much work. Not to even mention when expressions are expressed that connection is hoped for too but so often that is impossibly hard to come by. Lol but I push on.. Push out.. I do it mostly because I enjoy it. I feel accomplished when I share things. It helps my daily life immensely. Despite my influx of digital art. Writing is my preferred medium.

So this is my soul expressed here.. Imperfect. I am not sure if others would admire imperfect sharing but it is what it is and I am brave just putting writing art out at all. Always my hope is.. That HIS presence/spirit/strength which is the LORD with me always is shown.. It is not religious at all in the words I’ve chosen. I am not religious though.. As in outwardly.. BUT IT IS HIS strength that I will speak about here because though miniscule as my faith might be I still have faith. I truly believe HE is with me and there is some greater reason for it all. And that ANYTHING good in me.. HE is the source of it. I do recognize a contentment in myself.. A sense of being held. A peace.. I have not felt anxious. I have not given up. I do not cry often as I used too. I can sleep ok. I am not worried about anything really. I am not feeling hopeless. Many things I can still be thankful for.

Just as the title above says.. I am weak and not physically well put together, and I have little output…

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I do not have ducks. I do not have a row. I have squirrels, and they’re at a rave.

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2 Corinthians 12:9 Amplified Bible (AMP)
9 but He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you [My lovingkindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected [and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.” Therefore, I will all the more gladly boast in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ [may completely enfold me and] may dwell in me.

Holy Foolishness

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Ohh how good it feels to get to writing again. It is like meeting up with an old friend who is so welcoming and yet patient to sit with me and hear all my news even before they have said a word!!

Sitting on my bed in my bedroom has always been a thing for me. And now it is enforced to stay at home with the current lock down due to a virus that is highly contagious and extremely dangerous in our world. For an introvert it is less a trial then for many but still you know it means a freedom of going to normal places is no longer mine. When I started writing this it was Friday pay day and there was nowhere to go. I like op shops.. Coffee.. Art stores. Visiting my children or doing things with them. Not doing those things does feel very strange.

So writing for me and art for me is a beautiful escape that I am freer today to take but also a way to communicate and find my flow. It is also very spiritual to me and a way to talk about my faith and share how it helps me.

This writing today is based on an ebook I recently bought on sale called “Illuminating the way embracing the wisdom of Monks and Mystics” by Christine Valters Paintner.

Only a couple of dollars on sale I bought a few of her books! The saint that inspired my writing today is Francis of Assisi.. The heading of the chapter says 1. Francis of Assisi: The Fool. Where I got my title for this blog post. Foolishness part. Im not going to go into the story so much of who he was and his life calling but he does stand out to me because he did things differently and lived a quite radical life and very differently to how the church of his day conducted themselves.

In his own words.. “I do not want to hear any mention of the rule of St Augistine, of St Bernard, or St Bendadict. The Lord has told me that he wanted to make a new fool of me.” He lived in a way that seemed foolish to the way of the world.

One of the quotes I highlighted

“To be an outcast means that we don’t align ourselves with the dominant way of thinking.

Francis was a man who loved living on the ‘edges of things. Rejecting power, prestige, and wealth, he found freedom and joy in the simplicity of his path. Walking away from security he found new purpose. He demanded we look at the world differently. Seeing that everything in our lives is alive with sacred presence all we need is to see things anew.
He preached to men and to creatures.. Spoke of a new way to follow the gospel. He was drawn to those living on the margins, the poor and destitute and was unafraid to touch the untouchables.

Another quote from the book.. “The Russian church has a special name for saints who are regarded as holy fools: yurodivi. These are the wild souls who wittness to other possibilities.

Bible says. “We are fools for the sake of Christ” Cor 4:10

I choose to worship God differently and it does look foolish when you do things differently. Seek God differently and do things in a different way to the majority. You can appear to be an outcast and I have been treated that way and I do get that to an extent. So I identify with Francis in some ways. One needs to learn humility to walk different paths because you will stand out and be called out for it and people have stayed away from me. I have found it testing not to criticize others for their choices but stick to my path and walk it with as pure a heart as possible. I don’t always want to be defending my path or speaking in such a way that offends others but I cannot stand still and feel shame or frustrated because then I go nowhere and you can wander in the wilderness feeling that outcast status instead of saying God here I am which way now. Teach me and use me here as I am for the greater cause no matter that it has cost me to be different. To be misunderstood. To walk a path before You that isn’t the same as majority. Help me to walk upright and unafraid and with courage and love.. With my heart focused on YOU and peace and living that out despite others around me thinking I am lost, rebellious and hard hearted.. Help me to believe that there is a greater purpose and what may seem foolish to many actually can be intensely holy and beautiful and precious.

I created a mandala.
Named it Holy Foolishness.

Which the book encouraged. My focus on thinking about Francis of Assisi what I knew his life to be like, what had risen in my heart/spirit as I read the chapter. My own playfulness. Freedom that we all have before God.. As the scripture says. Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in our time of need. We have freedom.

There is a fear involved with creativity. Feel selfish. Frivolous. There are those that see things like this lead to evil practices that do not lead to God but away. Open doors to other forces all sorts of things like this. To me I do not want fear to rule me or keep me from enjoying things that make me happy and from looking up because I do look up doing art and creativity. To me I tried not to think too much and just let my spirit be free.. Whatever colors came to me and it looks like a shield to me.. Faith shield thing.

I use an ap on my phone to create it. Now I am going to see what meaning I can gather from what I created because I did it freely and without thinking.. just flowed with it. But I love that what I find through simple art can have such profound and deep meanings!!!

I started with dark blue and purple. Dark blue for spirit and purple for honoring Gods kingdom and His rule over the earth as highest authority. Dark green for earth and life of mankind. Various browns for humility, earth, humanity, life, earth creates life. Then I went to pink which I consider represents creative spirit and I started to bring that in from the edges. I didn’t learn creativity through religious teachings but from outside artists and art in general and since I have walked this creative journey I am hearing now churches have artists in church doing art while the preacher preaches that is pretty cool.. Creative Spirit has brought me out of myself and made me have to think of why I do this.. What it means to me and what God is doing despite difficulties.. It has caused me to value beauty and truth and made me focus on God within and gifts HE has given to the world and especially me which makes it all the more personal.

When you no longer follow a certain way of doing things and step away from it.. Everything changes. I mean suddenly you are not relying on that. So this art is making me think of God in a whole different way such as I have had to do when I was not worshiping every Sunday the way the mass does.
The pink became hot pink, hot pink to me is pink, red and purple combined pink creativity, red blood carries life and Jesus blood purifies us, purple Kingdom.. all combined.. its wonderfully bright and stands out to me and gave the centre of my mandala like a power punch and its a great feeling to be alive and thriving and happy and that flows from the centre of being or spirit.. Source of beauty and brightness and spiritual richness and it just blossoms and from out of the abundance of the heart it touches and transforms everything.. God always, always, always centre of my life and what I see life in general to be. Because of Him who is the master creative. I create. I enjoy. It makes even the deaf find a way to communicate..

I access His Spirit which is one with my spirit within me as the kingdom of heaven is within so I guess that kind of explains why when I worship in spirit and truth that I do not miss the physical aspects of how I used to worship. I mean the Kingdom of God is within so every person today who is NOT in the building are all joined together in spirit all over the world and that will never change wherever they are doing their thing. I am part of that. My mandala exercise encourages me that no matter how ‘general minds of mankind come together at any time ’ the truth of it is He is creator of life and He is the same yesterday, today and forever and He created us and His Son came so that all of us could know the truth and be a part of it.

I mean Francis of Assisi might not have been looked a part when he lived as he lived different to the way the church conducted themselves in his day yet He was a great well loved saint of God and is our brother through Christ.
I do not have to fear evil or being evil because God is the centre of my being. The corner stone of the church and our salvation. There has been fear that someone who works differently or walks differently has not the spirit of God.. But God does not look at the outward but He looks at the heart at the core of a persons being. When JESUS came to earth HE is the head of body and He himself did many things different to the way the religious leaders were and He was crucified for it. Thankfully though being Gods son he saved us from ever being rejected again because he was rejected for us.

We are all apart of that body now because of Jesus. My Mandala exercise began with the Holy Spirit dark blue at the beginning of time brooding over the waters, I acknowledged the Kingdom of GOD as the one that reigns and everything else good comes from that and stems from that. I see beauty and purpose, and identity and all is connected through JESUS who is the Christ. That is what I see in this creative exercise and I believe Francis of Assisi went forth from that same Holy Spirit and lived the way he lived because He drew his power from God and was not afraid to be even foolish to the world but to those whom he ministered too they saw Gods likeness in him. So I name it Holy Foolishness because to some it will appear that way but not to all who walk in freedom and live unto God not just living via the order of the day.  Father God said there would come a day when people lived by Spirit and truth and that is what He seeks.

I think as I sit here on a Sunday that God is with me. I am thinking on Him and I am going to share my thoughts. I am considered perhaps different because I am not in a building or watching a video produced by a building of people for a time on earth when even church buildings have closed their doors but I hope that our ideas and constrictions of what is of God are magnified and blown apart and our thinking might be expanded in this time of physical isolation for the Holy Spirit is NEVER restricted and connects us all because He is eternal and lives beyond human fragilities and works in us even despite what is considered foolishness. I think the building is us where we humans are and as we are and there has never been a greater time then this for the walls to come down and Gods mighty power through us to bring heaven to earth. How much more right now do we globally need that power at work in us weaving us together strong and beautiful, human and holy and as one people under God!

In Peace Will I Lay Down And Sleep

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In peace I will lay down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety.

Ps 4:8

This digital art work makes me feel really good. I showed the kids last night and they knew it was a representative of myself. Well they said it was me.. But I am not that skinny lol and I use creative license.. I sleep under the covers most times but I am making myself vulnerable here so you see the whole of me as I am.

I want to keep my art expression real as I want my whole life to be. I spend a lot of time in my bedroom and on this bed. Sitting or sleeping.

The main reason for this art piece is not just a kind of selfie I want to share an experience of the divine while sleeping\resting on this bed. I want to be vulnerable in the telling because that is who I am. I want to show myself as I am, where I am and how I am but also I do pray that in the vulnerability you see something more then just me.

The other night I was lying in my bed much like this with my things on the bed beside me and yes I have creative license to make it look the way it looks. To be honest there is usually more stuff then that on my bed and can be in piles in my room around my bed. I have become more of a hoarder in my older years.

My phone and ipad are usually very close to me always. My phone particularly and not for phone calls but to text and keep in touch with the world through social media and I use it for so many things as well as reading and looking at art of all kinds. This bed is the same bed I have slept in since we bought it in 2000 or thereabouts after coming home to Victoria from Western Australia. We had to furnish a whole house and needed a bed. Queen size and I used to share it with my husband and can you believe its been 10 years since I was married.

So it has not always been a happy place to lie in as a single woman because I miss someone beside me. To snuggle up to at night. Being in this bed I am reminded of the past and what I do not have. I feel my aloneness. My singleness. So the other night as I lay here with all my stuff and those thoughts come.. When you ponder where you are in life. How you are feeling. What has happened to you to get you to this point. I was painfully aware of being single. Being deaf and on disability and living with limited means. Of living in a shared house. Of frustrations to be myself amongst close relationships. Of my body aging.. I was aware of my introversion. The struggle to be motivated…. Etc.. And as anyone would know the list goes on.. You lie there and lay your life or lack of life out in your mind and yes lol most of the hardest and most difficult parts are premiering.. My head was reeling with all my lacks and frustrations.

But wonderfully and the absolute reason for this whole sharing is I was also incredibly aware of a deep sense of peace within. I have felt this before. Once years ago leaning against a toilet door around that danger time of 5:30 ish for a parent when you’ve got a house full of kids and they all want you but you have a full evening before you can relax and rest up. I think there was even little hands trying to get in under the crack of the door.. Trying to find me.. I realized that I still had energy and was still going even though in those days I used to stay up way too late and Justin worked so much and we had struggles with each other even back then.. I recognized that peace and that I was being helped despite myself and it had nothing to do with me.

Another experience was during the time baby Tyler was ill and in ICU in hospital. It was during a very stressful and difficult time in my life when I wanted to escape into music that normally would make me cry and release emotions but I couldn’t cry and I didn’t know why but it was that peace within that kept me calm and still and when the realization came it is an incredible moment like you are suddenly face to face with God and all those hard things just sort of melt away.. And so again I was just suddenly transfixed by it and still am incredibly comforted yes in this bed as I am with all that I have experienced in my life. The thing about this peace is once you have experienced it you do not forget it and it can help you again when you remember!!! You instantly recognize that it is other worldly well at least I do.. HE himself has said it surpasses our understanding.. I think tribulations make it even more recognizable.

This peace comes again despite me and I would be remiss to say I have not contributed to how I am but I do not take credit for this peace. Much has happened to me out of my control, other things I just don’t work at changing. Other things again I just accept and some might call it laziness and I can be very lazy, others might say depression or a giving up. I don’t label it but I know that I have lost a lot of energy for much and live pretty basically and do minimal rather then maximum. I concentrate on spiritual rather then flesh.

This peace is not due to great faith I would not say I have great faith. I have faith yes. I acknowledge God yes. But I do not live as a majority who I know profess faith and live. I do not pretend to be someone I am not. But I believe and know God with me. I do not follow people or go to a weekly place of worship perse but look to God where I am and as I am and that can be 24\7 but not all the time it is rather I am aware of HIM always HE is the reason for everything. This peace is just so deep and so beautiful and again I HAVE to share it. I don’t even think of the fact that maybe few if anyone will read it though for peace sake I hope everyone does because this would help anyone whose life is difficult and how much does our world need peace.

Maybe the art will be seen simply because its colorful and stands out on social media and it might attract attention. People seem to notice art much more then writing but unless you know my heart the art is just a pretty bright digital art piece and oh LORD I hope my heart where you dwell is seen and people might want to think about you or find you. Amen and amen..

I truly hope others would find this peace and it isn’t to do with me. I do pray but its spasmodic. It isn’t cause I am any special kind of person because I am not. But that peace which is HIS presence is with us all you need do is to be aware and seek HIM for his sake HE says seek and you will find.

If I kept focusing on the troubles it be easy to be depressed because its been such an impossible struggle to live as I believe and share my heart which is my way in the world. To be even able to communicate normally and deeply when the world isn’t that way then being deaf on top its a cruel and difficult thing. I shared my heart with a loved one not long ago, no response as yet and that happens so much. I even wrote to them answer only when you can but I wonder you know why someone who says they love me as I am has no answer even if its to say well I need time or to think or I have no answer . I give people that option now not to respond not that I don’t want them too I do but I would rather feel more apt to invite non response then have it happen anyway and just live on as if that is normal. Such is my life.

That I do experience peace when I cannot communicate normally and struggle with it and there isn’t much coming back to me is incredibly affirming because I have not had to do anything special to receive it.. Bless God.. I feel so loved, so valued even as I am and especially as I am. I just look to HIM as I am that’s it. I talk to HIM as I am that’s it. I do find comfort in some scriptures which is HIS word to us. I have many that I know off by heart and I can thank my upbringing and many faithful Christians for teaching me to memorize it and store it in my heart.

It is this one that comforted me on my bed the other night.

2 Corinthians 4:8-9 this is the King James Version because that is what I know..

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed but not in despair. Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

We are troubled on every side not distressed.. Makes me tear up.. Not distressed.. Because HE is with us.. HIS peace is perfect despite our imperfections and it comes to us right where we are.

I want to show myself in my pj’s I often stay in them for hours.. I love reading.. Writing.. Art.. Watching TV series and discussions and people speaking and living as their characters and in other worlds, true life stories and documentaries.. because I can read every word via deaf captions.. I feel like I am in the world again because they are living and loving and breathing, there is give and take..sharing back and forth and I can understand every word!!! I do not feel condemned doing art, watching TV, using social media and keeping a blog. Sharing my heart and my faith because that makes me happy and free and I am feeling a part of the world and we are supposed to share our faith. So even as an introvert with my things around me.. I am aware of HIS love and HIS abiding peace and I feel held. I just want everyone that feels different or struggles in this world to know that GOD loves you and will help you through all that batters your soul and HE can give you help within to live despite frustrations on every side.

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Deep Speaks to Deep

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Took my time with this one I may not get through many of the Advent words in the list I’m very loosely following.. I do find it hard to stick with something and I have many unfinished art pieces to back that up.

Today’s word is Creator.. I was watching a wild life documentary and incredibly beautiful whales were swimming.. A drone captured the whales from directly above and oh my it’s what inspired this art but I couldn’t get a good photo off the TV..

I searched for an image.. and loved one I found with sun rays streaming down.. Which have been my ‘thing’ and one of the ways I’ve felt and seen God in my world.. There was a period of time when they appeared in the sky almost every time I walked.. it was phenomenal really but I don’t think anyone else really noticed this though I did post quite a few photos on social media during this time..

Most of the things that encourage me are usually just things I see daily that might only seem to be for me.. such things keep me going and although I do share so many times I’m one of the only ones really enthusiastic about it..

I didn’t trace I haven’t for awhile now.. drawing ✍️ everything myself and of course digitally it’s easier to try and retry until it looks the way you want..

God is the mighty creator of every creature and I guess it makes you think more on the wonder of creation when you create your own art.. I love love love deep things.. so the deep of the ocean where these beautiful whales are swimming up towards the light resonates with my soul.. the light beams that are HIS presence and glory and yet there they are in the depths which often I’ve experienced personally as well..

I’m AMAzed even myself with this art and I kept putting it down while working on it thinking to myself.. I don’t think I can get it right.. it’s too much work. it takes too long.. but I did keep at it. And love what I’ve created.. it’s different to the photo so even though it’s inspired by the original photo it’s not the same. I love how my creative spirit actually over takes me and helps me with how to do it and gives me ideas as to what might work.. And either though I do not know what I’m doing lol I am actually doing it..

We know environmentally world wide oceans are feeling the devastating results of pollution, the greed of mankind and the effects of global warming and whales are often hunted and it’s absolutely heart breaking. The darkness of the earth was in my mind too as I did my art.. and how I resonate with that fear of what is happening to our planet and for us as mankind re pollution and how mankind’s greed affects us all and how we prefer to destroy rather then care..

But as an artist soul you take such care when you create and it opens your heart and eyes to more of the small details… so you know that you know that you know that God the most awesome Creator of all.. Has put so much attention to detail into our world that of course He isn’t just idly sitting by and letting it all go to waste.. HE truly loves and cares for us all.. and He has always had a plan in action and we do good to dwell on that at this time of year.. Advent reminds me of the divine glory of creation and even more the absolute perfection of the earth as it was at the beginning and still we can see that beauty even now in our world.. The Master Creator and Designer has not abandoned us. We can rest when we look up to the light.. that He will take care of everything if we can keep our minds stayed on Him and live by our Spirit.. We have to keep looking up, do what we can do and treasure our world and value ourselves and the creatures and ask Him for guidance along the way.. We can trust HIM with the future..

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Divine

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Divine – Taking my time thinking on Advent.. As I pondered the word divine I immediately thought of glorious images of grand cathedrals and my favourite sun light streams from heaven.. Mountains make me think of the majesty of God and grandness of divine creation as well stain glass windows and nativity scenes turn my heart to think of the same.. All glorious things and really they make us look up in awe and turn our thoughts to the heavenly but to humanly relate in our ordinary every day and not have to trek great distances to soak it in or wait for the experience to do so..

In order to sense it and bask in divine in the every day. It bodes us well to see Gods glory right where we are.. Actually inside us!!!

I always think of God when I see little birds.. and there are scriptures on how he cares for them.. feeds them and knows when even one falls to the ground… God used birds in the bible to bring messages and do HIS work and likened the Holy Spirit to a dove descending.. Creatures are part of Gods creation and I would not want to imagine my world or life without them.. Gods Creatures enhance our lives and earth.. They bring us pleasure.. They show us HIS love and attention to detail and I love as I draw my digital paintings how I am thinking of the smaller details as well. Amazes me the intricacy of faces, the light in the eyes, the lines on the face.. The passion in humans, and the way we can enjoy our live and interact with creation.. The birds who come daily into our yards, the colour of feathers, the tiny little heart beating inside the chest of a bird and how they flit from here to there.. and can fly away at a whim.

Of course Gods presence is everywhere wether we acknowledge it or not and His glory is shown in the beauty of the earth too.. And as HE says the Kingdom of heaven is within and HE has gifted mankind with being created in HIS own image so we are very precious and indeed fragile containers of divine.. So I focused my art on drawing the divine within humanity and displaying through HIS creativity the divine presence in us and how glorious that life is.. Life is from Spirit & it’s divinity at its very best.. When we recognise God having come into the world as us, born as human like us yet HE was also God and it has all been for a greater reason.. You can find incredible hope that HE has always poured out HIS love into the earth and upon creation and because you can see HiS attention to detail. You can know that HE has always planned to reset and make new the earth and will one day. Mankind may lose its way and forget their origin and not everyone takes care of our planet, creatures and indeed value and live in such a way as to respect life and every human on this earth.. But we can find HIM and know his peace if we just choose to see the divine in HIS perfect creation and trust HIM who put the stars in the sky. When we do so it changes the way we live and walk on this earth.

We can see the divine in us and all around us. If we continue to look to HIM we do what we can and trust that he will take care of everything else.

John 10:10 I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

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IMMANUEL

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– IMMANUEL- means ‘God with us’.. This is digital art and it’s not based on my own imagination I found an image on Pinterest. My art is inspired by an image by Ryan Lone/Getty Images. I just drew a likeness in my own interpretation..

God with me has saved my life.. extremely meaningful and personal this word..

This picture could have been a drawing of a kitchen sink! Because that’s where I was washing dishes in the past when I heard in my Spirit the words..

….I will be with you always…

Along with a few other words that I have clung too ever since.. I have never forgotten hearing them. These Words are life to me.

They were given to me when I was still married & living in the family home with our 5 children..

Probably no more then a few months later.. My 18 year marriage dissolved, oldest son moved out, we decided to sell up the house etc

Everything changed.. Very difficult time for me speaking personally.

So those words coming when they did helped me know God was always with me. I believed God and they went deep within me like an anchor in a wild sea and held me steadfast.. they reminded me continually I was not alone and that God was looking out for me and HE did.. HE still does.. Something happens when you stubbornly believe..

I didn’t get angry.. I never blamed God.. I needed HIM too much nobody else could walk through with me 24/7 like HE has.. Peace became my assurance that I could trust the light in the darkness. I was comforted many many nights when tears were my constant food.

Even though it’s tens years later.. I can still find incredible strength in this promise.. and I think the peace that comes with it is even more wonderful.. Because it has not been easy.. I currently house share with my parents and I have no worldly status or career or title.. I am low income.. almost deaf now.. hearing has declined in ten years. I am still single.. only two children left at home.. More reclusive.. not particularly do I stand out in any way.

But that peace shows up HIS presence even more when I have this inner hope shining within that all the hardships have never been able to dim. I know HIM best through long dark nights. That’s when the stars shine brightest..

So the divine presence depicted here in the night sky is really HIM with me even though darkness has been more a friend to me then the light. I overcome through it all because of HIM with me.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid or be dismayed.” Deuteronomy 31:8

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The Word

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This is an art prompt based on Advent. Found through Instagram. First days prompt was ‘Word’

I wasn’t even going to do anything but then I saw a facebook friends photo. Which was the inspiration for my art.

I sat up took notice and this is what I commented to her photo.

*** It caught my eye today as Advent starts.. there’s a lady on Instagram who is doing a month of art prompts..first one is ‘word’.. mind if I do some art using your photo.. maybe just draw it.. I don’t of course understand why you posted it.. or if there’s some local controversy.. but that’s been mankind in general over anything everyone has their own opinions.. **

My friends Leigh’s response..

“Sharon Peart help yourself x

There’s a guy in town posts words on his fence , all different ones . I like this one for the same reason you like it 🙌🏻 he calls his are the word so make of that what you will 💗”

Photo taken in a town in Southwestern England.

It took me ages to draw and it’s not quite the same and yes has imperfections..

But I see that spiritual matters have a synchronisation about them.. I can’t help taking notice.. I do believe such things the timing and all have a deeper meaning and they fascinate me. I did want to give up as I drew cause I don’t feel my art has much purpose behind it being just for me.. I think to myself why am I spending so much time on this.. Personally though I’m always blessed when I do art expression. It connects me to express how I’m feeling.. makes me think.. makes me happy.. I sense Gods presence and it brings me joy and I love sharing it.

Maybe the man that displays these words didn’t intend them for Advent or maybe he did. How amazing is it that they had the power to move me across the other side of the world.

I like that even though they are just words they can mean different things to different people and they really stand out in an ordinary street setting.. which resonates with me personally as I hold Gods Spirit.. HIS glory within me in a very ordinary flesh body and I love sharing my faith too..

I believe God is the Word.. I believe HE is who he says.. and I’ve been helped personally by believing..

But the wonder of my believing is I can live in this current world and find GOD everywhere.. see HIM right here in this street across the other side of the world.. these words linked me to my friend, they especially make me think of God and they encouraged me to create this art.. They help me see His presence and his love for us in the everyday world and it’s comforting..

It’s the meaning we attribute to the word or is it the appearance of HIS presence filtered down in a form we can relate too?!? Every child born is created in HIS image..

May your spiritual eyes be opened this time of year like never before to see the wonder, love and be comforted right where you are and as you are.

John 1:14

The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

****

Take Courage My Heart

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I wish I could just do art and not go into it but sometimes I just need to explain some more.. I do not even know what it means till I look at it after I create it and then think about it some.. then it amazes me how meaningful it is.

I rarely if ever plan.

This art piece came to me in pieces. It is based off a photo. A photo that means a lot to me and I always knew I would want to do an art piece on it since I took it but yeah ask my youngest daughter I am never in a hurry.

The photo was taken on recent holidays to the beach. Family holiday that included my mother, brother, sister, both my siblings families and also my 5 children! It was a fantastic time!

The photo was taken on the last day after we had already left the accomodation and actually it was because for once in my life I made a plan and that is how everyone came to be there… Coffee at the beach cafe together before taking off for home!

I did not notice the pigeon at the time.. my sister did and told me. It was sitting on a ledge above the coffee house tables in an outdoor area where the family was sitting.

White birds appearing have been a thing for me. I see it as an encouragement from GOD. It is incredibly life affirming and personal for me…

Now the reason this one really inspired me to take a photo, do an art piece and write about it is…
That only moments before I saw it I had sent a friend request to my sister via face book. We had not been connected on face book for quite some time and for years have had a distant relationship.. At my request.

That is not something I care to explain in full in this writing. I will just say that it was something I felt strongly I needed to do.. I did not take it lightly but unfortunately I do not think many people understood my side or my feelings etc.. it actually made my life harder in many ways.. But I do take pride in the fact I stood up against things that were hurting my soul and causing me harm.. I do believe I have healed up with Gods help and because I did not do the easy thing but stood against it God has rewarded me..

For all that I lost God gave me greater gains.. one of those things has been taking a whole new path in art expression which has really been birthed out of a long and difficult period of my life..

I have found my peace perse about it. And will add that I had for awhile desired to change things but it didn’t seem the right time and it was on this holiday I decided it was the right time..

And therefore that is why I decided to add my sister back on my face book and it was my quiet way to take a step towards reconciliation and strangely nobody has said anything at all about it since lol but that is very normal.

At this point only moments later my sister saw the bird.. I also added a small message to say that I thought we should keep the momentum of the holiday going but that it was totally her choice to add or not add me back.

I had simply done all this while quietly sitting at the table surrounded by family typing it out on my iPhone before hitting send.. It was actually quite a huge thing for me because Face book is a place where I can communicate without deafness robbing from me and it’s been my safe place..

But nobody noticed and that has been the way it has been all along.. I for the most part have had to deal with it alone.

So perhaps there is significance in this quiet and gentle way I dealt with it. Humanly I have no idea why nobody talks about such things but we just don’t.

I do not think Shell (nickname for Rachelle) would have even seen the request at the time and didn’t appear too for a little while after perhaps even the next day I cannot remember now.

The encouragement for me was almost straight after I made that deliberate choice Shell saw the white pigeon and told me.

I had seen a similar white pigeon on a ledge of the Darwin hospital way back in 2007 when baby Tyler was in NICU which encouraged me then too.. I think I was 6 floors up at that time..

So to see this bird after I made a huge personal choice to seek peace seemed to me a sign from GOD it was indeed the very right time.

So my art today is symbolic of GODS Spirit and presence with me and to me it’s absolutely crucial to inspire me to keep looking up and not at what is or what is not happening.. Seeing that HE is helping me when I most need it. And too of course that my sister showed me the white bird resonates that even our enemies will be at peace with us.. Not that I call or ever called my sister an enemy but I know the enemy of souls uses people close to us to cause us harm.. And the enemy has certainly tested me to the extreme limits through a few close relationships and it hasn’t only been testing that’s come via my sister but with myself and her it got to the point I just broke down because the spirit I struggled with in a previous close relationship was attacking me through her as well. It was too similar and I couldn’t bear up under it any more.

Definitely seeing this bird at such a time shows me HIS peace and that I can trust the decision I made.. HE has never made me feel wrong in taking the stand I did rather people made me feel wrong.. I felt peace thankfully even when so many appeared to turn their backs on me and I lost support that perhaps could have helped me find strength and fortitude much much sooner..

I was broken.. and I needed to heal.. But true healing can only really come through God alone.

But I cannot keep looking backwards and surmise as it does not do one any good.. I tend to move forward and simply let go and let God.. The sign to me I was doing the right thing at the right time even despite the hardships has always been peace in my spirit.. I have never lost that since this moment above, nor have I felt anxious! I just tend to look to God not people.

There was a light bulb lit just like this below the bird on the day and in the photo too of course.. which I so love that I can capture this in my art piece.. His light with me. His presence and also symbolic that my prayer and heart cry has always been for my light to so shine and I believe for all that has happened the darkness has definitely not overcome me!!!

A very good sign to have the light shining in this art piece and it symbolizes that GOD has always been my guide and always will be and HE will take care of all things that have not been addressed re my past and that seemed an invisible battle to almost everyone and that nobody even seems to have noticed much then or now… but I take heart that they are certainly important to HIM and I can find complete rest for all things.

And wonderfully I want to and can share it now.. even if nobody knows the greater why..

One last note.. it is also my wedding anniversary today or would have been.

29 years since I married on this very date.. 10 years of being single ohh lol.. which is not so fun.. it’s hard I get lonely.. I find it hard at times seeing others celebrating love and all that and keep it to myself now cause I do not wish to take away any of someone else’s good feelings..

I wanted to stay married but my then husband did not.. it worked out though as we were not happy together and we are better friends now.. I’m just thinking about the date today and all that it means to me.. nobody has said anything.. just me thinking so this art piece comforts me today too.. God was with me in my past, is with me now in my present, & He is also already in my future so I can cherish the peace I experience and treasure these moments in my heart and from all this my heart takes courage..

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Peacechild

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I really really love creating these art pieces yes even digitally..

Two programs influenced this.. about going back in time.. meeting oneself in the past from the future..

It’s myself of course.. hugging myself as a child..

I was blond back then.. symbolic..

There are things Gods Spirit has revealed personally I didn’t realise till now .. Things I’m aware about and even things I’m not that affect me but yet HE gives me peace for everything.. That all works together for good.. That I can trust HIM completely and that everything will come full circle and has meaning & purpose.

Calling this ‘Peacechild’ which I nowadays call myself online.. though no hyphen in this!!

Connection of past/present/future.. Kingdom of God is within.. one can never enter unless one comes as a child..

Words are from an old childhood bible.. scanned into a photo in the background..

I’ve not really been too worried about backgrounds in paintings but everything works together here and even though we feel our past doesn’t mean anything.. in HIM always beauty for ashes.

Even that the art is digital is meaningful because this is where I thrive in Spirit..

HE is with me always.. HE is my BELOVED and I am HIS..

Healing art piece..

Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you

From

(‭Jeremiah‬ ‭1‬:‭5‬ AMP)

What it all means personally.

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Happy Easter..

I have not blogged in simply ages. I have been concentrating on art expression in visual ways and paint on paper or canvas ways. Today because it is considered one of the highest important holy days in the Christian calendar and as I did not attend a physical building I think it might be a perfect day to write and connect hopefully with others. When I say connect I mean others can read and respond or just read or ignore completely which probably happens more then not. 🙂 But it is my way to share this moment, on this day, on this occasion just in a different way then others share it. Except I am not confined to a physical location and specific time. When I post words and thoughts and any corresponding pictures it stays there and can continue to speak. That kind of tickles my fancy.. A bit thrilling cause it becomes timeless in its own way.

Just an easier place to connect for me and it is more meaningful too. Where I am not just sitting and vegetating in an environment where I am not feeling connected to others.

I cannot hear or enjoy any music, nor really join in singing or worshipping that way nor hear a good sermon or even bow in prayer and join with others cause I have no way to know what is being shared around me. Because I cannot hear it and I get distracted and I cannot enjoy it. I am not really drawn that way any longer.

I am here.. God is here and I am at peace and I can wholly immerse myself in what I am writing and flowing with here. I enjoy it.

I am so very thankful to HIM for what Easter means and I can talk about my recent painting that I didn’t get to share more about. HE continually is placing religious art and art supplies in my way and its so personal and HE is saying to me.. enjoy this journey and please express it and gladfully share it. I am here with you. So close. I have given you this way to express yourself and connect with others don’t be afraid to soak it in and you do not need to be this or that or go here and there and you do not need anyone else’s approval or to do anything different to what is on your heart and how I am leading you.. I feel so precious. So favoured and because I am online I can also share it which makes it a way to communicate too.

But it is different to the majority and it means not looking to traditional methods and it means every day reflection and inspiration not just on certain days. Every day is holy and divine but I am free to experience it in normal and every day life and also a way that is incredibly life affirming and life giving to me personally.

Religious type art expression again can set you apart and there will be only certain people who will respond to it and sometimes no one but it does sort of encourage people who are not religious to respond and take notice simply because its in art form and there is freedom there. All people can appreciate freedom well I hope they can. True freedom is what our LORD came to bring to the world in any case.

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

My art of Jesus on the cross.. was inspired by a $1 dollar purchase of a beautiful prayer book. I did intend at first to cut it up for collage and art journaling and it was cheap but I may not of course because I find it hard to cut up beautiful things. So much gorgeous art in this beautiful book as well as prayers and writings. You see when I find these things it truly is as if HE puts them in my path. Well within my budget and yes I will admit to collecting many beautiful things and also things that inspire me and I enjoy being surrounded by them…

I do not want to be so ‘religious’ as such though this would be considered religious art.. I want my art to be personal, from my core and spiritual but also approachable. To be completely honest to who I am and what I believe but also not make it so that it isn’t disrespectful to GOD and HIS presence and glory. HE is holy and grand in the grandest sense but HE is not to me a central focus where I feel I need to be like everyone else.. not that I do not need people or too belong. Just that through HIM I believe and see that I am joined to everyone else and I guess that fixed gaze does tend to keep me not drawn to different ways of living or needing to be like everyone else. Through HIM I live and find my whole being revitalised and totally at peace.

My whole reason to exist, like HE is the sun and I am simply one of the planets among a whole solar system of other planets and we are all rotating and going through our existence revolving around HIM and although each is its own separate existence we are all one because of HIM who is at the centre of all life.

Seeking HIM first and HIS kingdom and HIS righteousness (not my own) and then all these things are added to me .. my rendition of Matthew 6:33

I thought first about painting on a canvas or something blank that you could do something else with or display at a later date. But my art journal is where I am daily. It has many things in it that are all personal to me. I have not set out to make a living from my art money wise or to display it other then online. I just felt led to create it at a personal level. I had already pre-painted the background. It felt right to paint it in here. Alongside a cut up collage of a city scene in winter .. It says.. here is where I seek and find GOD in my every day life right where I am, as I am.

So I put myself in the painting looking up at HIM like I do in my personal life. Being Easter HE is on the cross and inspired by that book I just found recently so it all fits in together. I did hesitate to paint something like this because the image I am basing my painting on is so perfectly painted. By artist Rogier van der Weyden (1400 -64) Christ on the cross..

This is where I have to lose all fear. Just have a go. Let go. let GOD. I remember the other day walking around the house after painting the initial painting. I love to pray walking around lol and also I can pray doing most anything.

I was saying to God.. how minuscule what I create is.. How I live. How I appear and present myself in this world. All so miniscule. Immediately after that prayer was said my youngest son came up and offered to me a plate of my favourite snacks. It was so beautiful. Like a reward straight after and I thanked God and was at peace. I mean I tie everything in you know. So I just do my thing. I find my joy in it and good things happen to me along the way!!

This is my intention always. ***

2 Corinthians 4:7 New Living Translation
We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.

and for a different slant from English Standard Version
But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.

So I can be unafraid even amongst the curled up pages of my art journal. My cluttered room. My introverted ways. By simple paintings.. to show you this absolute greatness of GOD that chooses to show HIMSELF through me.. ***

HE was vulnerable on the cross. At the mercy of me as an artist lol but also in life at the mercy of soldiers who didn’t care for human dignity or human suffering the cross was punishment and extremely cruel. I mean I realise they didn’t believe it was GOD right. But they would have heard the stories and maybe even witnessed miracles I do not know. I know the bible says on that day remarkable things happened. I mean this man was well known and he had followers and loved ones surrounding him. HE had stirred up a lot of people including the religious people of that day. HE was hated and HE was loved deeply.

To paint his body. HIS manly body. HIS human body. HE was probably stripped naked on that cross.. No decency here right. But I covered his maleness. I just wanted that to represent how I wish to depict truth but also not disrespect GOD or others in the process. I do not do what I do for shock value or even to disrespect others way of life. I see that modesty and honour is important. But I did start out being quite crude with my painting. I mean his arms are not right because HE was a carpenter HE would have been strong but to me the whole closeness of SPIRIT is hard because there is no touch.. there is no physical presence and I find that hard. It is lonely and I miss physical presence but faith isn’t seeing so you have to learn to trust and when you let go of the need for the physical closeness that strength and support brings.. you must find form and fortitude in weakness. So as I persisted on through my painting HIS face, heart, chest and lower body it became easier to form and paint. It was beautiful painting HIS body.. It felt freeing and I could identify with HIM as thoroughly human through this painting.. HIS suffering is beautiful to me because I have suffered and HE has become real to me in my suffering. So I am comforted.. I find hope and beauty in HIS suffering so that is how HIS thorns transformed to what appears a floral wreath.. though I did not mean that at all. I find my strength and momentum to live because HE is close to the broken hearted and HE himself was broken for me. Though HE is on the cross I believe and know HE has already overcome death, suffering and all evil and so will I.

By HIS wounds I am healed. At Easter and every day forward and back and for all eternity. I find life and not just life but abundant life.