Bible Art Journaling Advent Illustrated 2015 Genesis 1:31

And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. Genesis 1:31

I love that God takes time to look at everything He had made, and saw that it was not just good but very good! We need to make sure that we are following the Lords example and taking time to look at everything He created and even those things we create with the gifts we are given and appreciate how very good they are!

  
As we journey through advent preparing to receive the Word who became flesh and is the light of men, let’s live intentionally to make time to see creation and what our hands, heart, mind, body and spirit creates and see how unique each one is and how wonderful the Creator is who is our author and finisher of our faith.

I used a light coat of !liquitex professional matte medium on this page and dried it using my heat gun, careful to keep the heat gun moving so not to burn the page. 

I started with my tree of life in the center that is a Hero Arts clear stamp. I used gelatos to color my stamp and then lightly sprayed with water and immediately stamped it. I dried it again and then went in with my water color pencils to add more color and details using a paint brush with just a little water to move the color around the stamped image.

My focus scripture is highlighted in pink water color pencil. The rest on my background is gelatos. I highly recommend these! They do not bleed through the pages and nor do my water color pencils. 

Next I used stamped images of these animals that were fussy cut to be used as mask for card making and scrap book pages of an old stamp set called In The Wild from Stampin Up. I used the mask to trace the outline of the image of each animal lightly with my black water color pencil. Once I had them traced I used other water color pencils to add more details and shading and then activated the color using my paint brushes cleaning and drying between each color. 

  
Art journaling is fun! Bible Art journaling takes the Word into a new creative exploration of the scriptures. As I was working on each animal I found myself thinking about what it might have been like for God as he designed the giraffe! That long neck and super tall and lanky legs. I think giraffes are very comical to look at and watch and so I know God has a great sense of humor! God thought of everything we needed and everything that has life needed! He is all in the details. Next time you look at an animal look at the details. Zoom in and allow the Spirit to show you how grand our God is!

I am trying to not over think these journal entries. I am reading the scriptures and letting the Holy Spirit to flow in and out of me in the process and enjoy this time of creating based on Gods word for my life. 

I doubt that I will read these scriptures again and not recall this time of creating this journal entry in my bible. I have a lot of different bibles and I am journaling in a few of them to have enough to pass down to each grand child. The Lord willing, I will have plenty of time to journal in each of their bibles. 

Blessings and His Peace,

Donna Lee

Bible Art Journaling Advent 2015

Early, very early this morning I got up inspired to journal for day 1 of 2015 Advent reading.  I read Genesis 1, but my focus for the art journaling is Genesis 1:1-5. The prompt over at Advent Illustrated Facebook group for day 1 is light. 

Genesis 1:1-5 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. 

When I think of light, I think of the sunrise or the sunset and I adore getting to watch both! I love and worship God, and as a result when I get to see His glory in creation when it’s happening before my very eyes I failed deeper in love with Jesus!  His power, creativity, all knowing, loving and gracious acts of selflessness and servant hood is amazing! How can you not love Him when you see what He has created and see it working seamlessly! 

 

Bible Art Journaling Advent 2015 Day1

 
I used Watercolor pencils, Gelatos, A2 pencil, paint brushes, and water! Easy, easy, easy. 

This page was an experiment to see how I liked using these products on a bible page that was not prepped with clear gesso or matte medium. I love these products, but I like how they respond with a pretreated page of gesso or matte medium better! 

This summer as spent time outside of Seattle, WA and saw some amazing sunrises and sunsets. It was gorgeous and my rendition does not do my Lord Justice, but I will not forget the light He is in my life and how his blessings to me through His amazing creation fills me with awe and love for Him.

Have a blessed day and even greater Advent and Merry Christmas!

Donna Lee

Perception Of Any Report Determines How You Experience The Journey!

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The faithful believer of Jesus Christ knows his or her story is already written. How we perceive the reports that we get determines how we experience the journey. If you’ve read the Word including Revelation you know Jesus has won the battle over evil! In Christ we are victorious. Do not forget the end of the book. The negative, greedy, thieving world always twist the story to stir the pot and bring people into a state of fear or dread. Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death (not good news) I will fear no evil for thou (my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who has won the battle over all sin, death, and evil) are with me!
Read your story! The Word of God is for you and about how we experience the journey here on earth and in eternity with Jesus. It’s full of His promises! Every day of our year there is a ‘fear not’ verse for you and I! Why? Because fear is the tool and evidence of the enemy, Satan. If he can get you to operate in fear or dread of bad news, he has caused you to stumble in your faith. I know how the book ends. Therefore I know how my story ends and I fear no evil. Walking, living in faith, keeping the end of my story in my mind, heart, and soul helps me to enter into His presence with thanksgiving! Join me. Read your story and see how it ends. Put your faith in Jesus first and measure every report according to how your story ends! Let us enter into His presence with thanksgiving; Let us tshout triumphantly to Him in song!

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Art Journal Notes;
This was totally inspired by Tracy Weinzapfel Studios Mixed Media Monday class on 10.27.14. These are free online (Ustream) classes on most Monday evenings. You can find her on Facebook and online just search her name.

I love Grumbacher watercolors! I think I need bigger and better watercolor brushes, but I am learning and having fun on my budget and current supplies.

I do paint more carefully when I am working on a specific project. I take more time drawing and painting and add a little more shading and details. I have learned from Tracy that there needs to be sometime set aside to paint free style or spirited and just enjoy the process and what you learn about yourself and your technique or lack thereof. Art journaling is a great way to just relax, have creative fun, learn a few things about you and art and use what supplies that you have!

Thank you Tracy for the inspiration, laughter, fun, and lessons!

Blessings and His Peace,
Donna Lee

The Word Of Our God Stands Forever

A mighty fortress is our God! There are times in our lives when life throws us a curve ball and we may feel weak or unstable in the midst of the storm. We feel less defined when we go through life’s storms. My Dad passed away not quite two years ago. We knew he was in his final days as he suffered for several years. I was prepared for his leaving this earth and going to be with Jesus. I was not prepared for dealing with the ill actions of others in response to his death.

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I was raised by my Granny and Poppy who were very humble, God loving and fearing people. I watched and listened to the way they responded to life’s ups and downs and modeled my response accordingly. Prayer is the first response for me. When I knew Dad had passed I went to The Lord for reassurance and guidance of next steps. I was filled with His perfect peace about Dad and where he was and so thankful that his suffering had come to an end.

Upon arriving at his home we were met with attitudes and such a lack of love that I was knocked stunned. I have never seen and experienced such poor taste and a lack of Christian love in my life. My response was to get quiet before The Lord and speak as little as possible. I knew if I gave into my emotions and flesh I was going to regret it. To say that the devil was on the rampage is calling it light. These people who say they are Christians were filled with satans venom and deceit. All of it about the almighty dollar. I will not digress into details as they are of no consequence to me or my family. The Lord is our judge and knows our heart and will deal with each one of us on our own and according to His Word and timetable. There are consequences to a lack of love and exercising faith and self control and it’s happened since my Dad passed away. Knowing His Word gave me peace and confidence in this season of hell on earth.

Funerals are something that I have always had a distaste for. I think it’s a money making scheme and the people in the business use a time of sorrow to make as much as they can while they can. My Dads funeral solidified that I will not have one. It will be a private affair with true family and friends and no pomp and circumstance. No opportunities for the devil to use people to hurt my loved ones.

I needed time to process the loss of my Father and time to process and forgive the actions and lack of love we experienced. We were met with some family who loved us and expressed their grief appropriately and I’m thankful for them. The ones who satan used are not related to us by blood and for that I am also thankful, as I can shut that door now that Dad is gone. I needed the Holy Spirit to heal my heart, renew my mind, and pour more of me out and fill the void with more of Him. I need Him to define me with the details and shadows of the past so I am able to reflect and be the light of the One who is my Lord.

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I had to let go of the old past and the more recent past and accept what He could do out of the mess of what the devil meant for harm. That took some time, energy, and will power to do. I dug deep into His Word for comfort, examples of people who had experience such hatred and lack of love, and looked for the responses that God honored. I had to desire the Lords outcome more than what my flesh was crying out for. I had to face my own evil thoughts and repent of each one.

After this time of heart ache and grief, I can say that I am a stronger person in Christ Jesus. I know I have the One in me to deal with life’s ups and downs. I know better about the authority given to me by Jesus Christ to deal with the enemy while I tread upon the earth. I know better how to wield His sWord and take the blood of the enemy each day. I know that every battle I face makes me that much stronger each day to better deal with and defeat satan at his game. I have come to a place in life where I have risen up in Christ Jesus and put on the full armor of God and engage in the battle against the enemy!

Art Journal Notes:
I used a gel matte medium as adhesive to adhere my scraps of text paper to my art journal page. This caused some issues I had not run into yet. I was shocked as I have seen others use a similar product just different name brand and not have these issues. I pressed on.

I used spray acrylic paint for my back ground. I love how these backgrounds turn out. I let it air dry for the most part but had to use my hair dryer on cool setting to get the larger puddles completely dry before painting on my flower design using gesso. I dried the gesso design and then used fluid acrylics From DecoArt Media line. Love these! The colors are ultra bright and they go on your projects better than melted butter.

As I always have done in the past I use my acrylic sealant on my project and allowed it to air dry overnight. I came back in to do some doodling with my Sharpies and Pitt paint pens the next night. This is when I knew I had a problem. The page did not want to accept even a Sharpie! What is up with that? I was none to happy and yes I considered pitching this page in the trash. I used some masking tape to leave a space for my journaling and sprayed the project with another coat of acrylic sealant and let it dry for yet another night. Frustration set in along with a lot of questions as to why even continue.

My “never give up” attitude and resolve set in. I was determined to work through this no matter what! Yes in the back of my mind was there is always Gesso to cover it up and start over, but I knew I would find a path in the midst of the mess and end up with some good lessons of what not to do on future projects and victories of finding a surface my current tools would work with.

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I had to really work to get my Sharpie and paint pens to work using some gesso on the spots that refused to take the pens. I used a dot method and then went back over them after they had dried about 4 times! Talk about some patience. I just put the final touches on it today adding a few shadows and highlights using paint pens. I learned that Gesso is my friend. I will always start each journal page and mixed media project first with a layer of Gesso. It makes using layered mediums easier.

I liken the gesso to the blood of Jesus Christ that covers all sin and makes every valley and mountain top in life more accepting of what this world has to dish out. One cannot have to much Jesus in their life. He doesn’t always remove the struggles and heart aches in life, but He always uses what our enemy meant for our destruction to our good and growth in Him. It is all for His glory! I am nothing without Jesus. I can do no good without Him in the center of my life. My first thought of the day and my last thoughts are centered in Him. He is my mighty fortress that I wake and rest in.

No matter what life brings into my path, I stand in Christ Jesus. By His name and power I am able to do all things according to the will of God. When I can do seemingly nothing in the physical realm, I can stand firm in my faith in Jesus and win victories over the power of the enemy in the spiritual realm.

There is no one like our Lord ! He has already won the victory, we just have to stand firm in child like faith in Him who was given all authority and power on earth. Acting according to the scriptures and in the name and power of Jesus there is nothing that can come against us that will prosper. Knowing and operating with the cooperation of the Holy Spirit along with the gifts and fruit of the Spirt we will overcome all that comes against us and celebrate with true joy the mountain top experiences.

Isaiah 40:8
The grass withers and flowers fade, but the Word of our God stands forever!

We know our time on this earth is short. We know hard times and good times will come and go. We also know that no matter what, as believers in Jesus Christ we stand firm in Him and will see eternity in heaven once this life is over. The promises of God are eternal and in Christ we have the victory now and in eternity.

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The finishing touches of the markers and paint pens enhance the overall look of the original idea. While the page is less than perfect and has some scars as reminders of the battle to get it where it is I am reminded of the promise of the eternity of Gods Word for all believers.

Isaiah 40:8
The grass withers and flowers fade, the Word of our God stands forever!

Blessing and His Peace,
Donna Lee

No Weapon Formed Against You Shall Prosper – Art Journal 1:16

We live in a time in history where we have the Word of God and the history of God’s chosen people to read, listen to, and study. Many of us have heard the story of Moses and the Israelites many times. I want to encourage you to read this story and all the others as though you do not know the ending so that you can put yourself in the story and better understand the hand of God that was and is upon Israel and all of Gods people. Refrain from judging how Israel acts and rebels.

Emerge yourself in their story, remembering who they are (slaves) for 400+ years. When you have never known freedom and you get a small taste of it (Ex 14:8) and then suddenly your captor has you hemmed in with your backs to the sea and you have no weapons to defend yourself and your family and no place to retreat to, fear and anger is a common human reaction. If we do not put ourselves in the story it’s hard to relate to their actions and choices.

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Exodus 14:10-12 As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up and saw the Egyptians coming after them. Then the Israelites were terrified and cried out to the Lord for help. They said to Moses: “Is it because there are no graves in Egypt that you took us to die in the wilderness? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Isn’t this what we told you in Egypt: Leave us alone so that we may serve the Egyptians? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”

Fear can immobilize us if we allow it to consume our heart and mind. It may feel easier to continue to live in the known world of slavery we are accustomed to than to step out in faith and face the fear of the unknown circumstances/battles we face as live in Christ Jesus. Israel takes her fear and anger out on Moses, but they are really upset with God.

The Word tells us over and over again to “fear not”. As you are reading the story of Israel exodus from Egypt, you will see how they seemingly turn on Moses who came out of his safety net and all of his inadequacies to deliver Gods people from slavery. The Red Sea is behind them and Pharaoh and his army are about to overtake them. There situation went from awesome to terrifying in a very short period of time. They did this out of fear.

Listen to Moses response to this Nation who had been crying out to God for 400+ years for their Savior to deliver them from their captors.  Exodus 14:13-14 But Moses said to the people, “Don’t be afraid. Stand firm and see the Lord’s salvation He will provide for you today; for the Egyptians you see today, you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you must be quiet.”

From Yahweh’s perspective there was going to be no question in Pharaoh’s mind or in the Egyptian people’s minds as to whom delivered Israel from her captors then and now. This is how God works and the more we allow ourselves to look at life from His perspective the closer we come to seeing His ways. Who might God be trying to convince of His love, grace, power, and provision through your temporary circumstance or battle?

Israel had some battles ahead of them in taking the Promise Land God would give to them. After being slaves all of their lives they were not prepared to take the land by the shortest route. There was some training that needed to be done. Faith building exercises that let us know God is in control of our temporary circumstances and our eternity are learned as we experience life in the wilderness, alone with God!

Fear is Satan’s best weapon. If he can defeat you in your mind, with thoughts of fear of what ‘might be’ or the ‘what if…’  he gets a foothold in your life. Fear immobilizes people. We get angry in our fear and often lash out at people with inappropriate talk. Moses told the people to be quiet. Do not speak out of fear! It’s better to use silence rather than giving voice to the fear Satan is trying to defeat you with.  Do not speak negative or angry words into your life and those of others based on your fears. Practice being silent. Do not give the evil one a foothold to grab on to.

Moses went to God because Israel was taking out their fear on him. Look at God’s response.  Exodus 14:15 The Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the Israelites to break camp. In other words, don’t just stand there, MOVE forward! God had given Moses direct orders and told him why they were to be exactly where they are, so why was Moses crying out to God? Out of fear and probably a lot of frustration and self doubt.  Don’t you know Satan was whispering in his thoughts ‘see you can’t do this! You are not good enough! You are a murderer. You can’t even speak without stuttering!’ How many times have you heard him whisper his lies to you?

It’s hard to deal with peoples fear and all the emotions and negative talk that are born from it. Remember Satan uses fear to immobilize Christians. It’s his facade. Satan cannot take anything from you, only what you are willing to give to him. The best advice we can offer ourselves and others when we are in midst of a battle is break camp! Do not stand still. Moses told the people to stand firm in their faith in God not stand still in their position. God is always moving us forward. Closer to Him and further from our fear and our temporary circumstances. This is where our faith becomes the rubber on the road to Jesus who is the bridge that forges the gap and moves us out of slavery to whatever has a stronghold in our lives and into His presence and provision.

Exodus 14:16-18 As for you, lift up your staff, stretch out your hand over the sea, and divide it so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground. I am going to harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them, and I will receive glory by means of Pharaoh, all his army, and his chariots and horsemen. The Egyptians will know that I am Yahweh when I receive glory through Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”

All Moses had from the beginning of his faith journey with Yahweh was his staff. Not much of a weapon from the worlds perspective. There was a lot of power from God that used Moses faith and the staff to bring Israel where she was and where she would eventually end up.

The staff for you and I is our FAITH in Jesus Christ. As we break camp from our current position/circumstance and move forward with our faith raised high (even though we do not know exactly how things will turn out on this side of Heaven) the power of God is activated in our lives and those who are close to us will see Him moving about the earth on our behalf. He will be glorified!

Exodus 14:19-20 Then the Angel of God, who was going in front of the Israelite forces, moved and went behind them. The pillar of cloud moved from in front of them and stood behind them. It came between the Egyptian and Israelite forces. The cloud was there in the darkness, yet it lit up the night. So neither group came near the other all night long.

Just because you cannot see or feel the presence of Yahweh doesn’t decrease His power and presence in our lives. Jesus has our back now just as He did then and will forever have for those who put their faith in Him. Imagine Israel’s stress level increase when the Angel Of God (cloud) moved from in front of them to behind them. Israel was a large people so those who were accustomed to seeing the cloud of a Gods presence now did not see it! In their greatest battle so far, it appeared God had left them.  Anytime your fear gets activated it’s time to silence it by moving forward towards God in faith of the promises in The Word. Do not give into reacting to fear. Respond with faith and if you need to speak, speak directly from The Word as that is your sWord (weapon of choice for all Christian believers). Encourage yourself and others with His promises for your life. We do this by reading, listening, and studying The Word. The book as its written is God’s instruction manual to us.  Its where we go to find resources for our current circumstances. It what we ought to base all of our decisions on. It’s life to the believer.

Our promise for today;  Isaiah 54:17 No weapon formed against you will succeed, and you will refute any accusation raised against you in court.This is the heritage of the Lord’s servants,and their righteousness is from Me.This is the Lord’s declaration’. This tells us that weapons will be formed against us, but they will not succeed! We will refute any accusation raised against us with our sWord!

Understand that weapons formed against you is a sign to you that God is moving to destroy your enemies for His glory. Are your loved ones saved? If this is not true, who is your enemy? Not the ones you desire to be saved, but Satan who has them enslaved in deceit, addiction, lust, and all other sorts of worldly escape routes. Would you not prefer to be moving forward towards your freedom in Jesus Christ even though your temporary circumstances are uncertain? Satan is the thief who comes to kill and destroy. Jesus said in Matthew 10:10 ‘I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance’ Jesus is the bridge that forges the gap between the abundant life on earth as it shall be in Heaven.

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Journal Notes: One of my BFF’s is facing a diagnosis that no one wants to hear. Prior to my knowledge of any health issues the Lord led me to this section of scripture. As I read it, listened to it, and studied it the Holy Spirit’s presence was powerful. It was amazing how He revealed this story to me verse by verse. He let me see and experience the fear that Israel faced then and now. He also showed me Moses faith despite all of his shortcomings and mistakes. He showed me what it means to use our faith as a catalyst for forging ahead into unchartered territory even when the world is shouting at you to stop, be careful, don’t give up the certainty of your now for something that is not perfectly laid out before you. He impressed upon me how to use silence as a weapon against Satan. My BFF came to my house and had an urgent prayer request for a ministry that she and I follow, support and pray for called Out Of Darkness. This ministry rescues people enslaved by human traffickers. Her heart was heavy with a burden for the people to be reached through this awesome ministry. When she came in and asked us to pray, she, my son, and I gathered in our living room and prayed for the people who would be reached out to and offered freedom from their captors/abusers. The witness of the Holy Spirit was very strong and strongholds were being shot down in the spiritual realm as we prayed.

My BFF finished praying and I then began to pray aloud for the missionaries and the people they are reaching out to. I heard myself praying for my BFF’s healing and His provision for her life with a great passion and burning urgency. After we prayed I began to wonder silently why the Holy Spirit prayed for that through me. She and I left to go on a few errands together and she began to talk about an irregularity in her mammogram that she had recently. I was listening and thinking about when she told me this? She was talking to me as if I knew about it. I realized that she had NOT spoken to me about it at all. Immediately I understood why the Holy Spirit had prayed the way He did just a few minutes earlier!

I am going to be honest and tell you that my gut wrenched within me and the fear of the possibilities ahead of her gripped my mind and my heart. I wanted to SCREAM out loud, NO NO NO! I was mad at Satan and his darn tactics. Her life is on track for great blessings and her children lives were headed in a better direction and now this! Come on! Because of this scripture, my study of it and the power of the Holy Spirit through that process I understood that I had to use silence as a weapon against the evil one who seeks to kill and destroy God’s children. He cannot and will not have my BFF!

In my silence and listening to my BFF, our promise for todays Art Journal came to mind. I silently prayed it over her as we talked, shared and encouraged one another. I have continued to pray this and other scriptures on her behalf, fully trusting in Jehovah Rapha to heal her completely in Jesus name. I was crying as I prayed for her earlier that day. My son held me in his arms and assured me it was going to be okay. I knew ahead of time, but there was no fear at that point, only the Spirit of truth and healing. Its only when I allow my thoughts to go ahead to the what if or worst case scenarios that fear and anger rise up in me. I cannot and will not allow fear to guide my thought, my prayers, or my actions. I will stand firm in my faith that bridges the gap through Jesus Christ and I will walk through this process at her side, offering encouragement via The Word of God, prayers, and some good crafting time. She is more than a conqueror in Jesus Christ. She is healed by His stripes in Jesus name.

While she and I do not know the specific details as to how Jehovah Rapha is going to take this healing process and the lives that will be forever changed by her journey of faith and promise, we do know His mercy endures forever. We do know Him as our healer and Savior. We do know that we will spend eternity together in Heaven and that we will grow old together on this earth. We count His promises as truth for our lives and that of our families and generations to come. We share our faiths journey to encourage others along the path. We do know that ALL will know that this weapon formed against her and you is a sign to us that God is moving to destroy our enemies for His glory and encourage other believers in their faith journey. This test of faith will produce her testimony for Jesus Christ and I am sure it will be shared with many!

The bridge came from my wanting to paint with a pallet knife. I’ve watched many You Tube videos about how to use the pallet knife for different looks and techniques. A bridge sometimes has all the lines that a pallet knife makes easy. As I picked colors and prepared my paper palette with them carefully mixing colors and practicing with the pallet knife and paint brush I was reminded how simple tools that are not very threatening in the worlds eyes can create and wield a picture (vision) of the path we choose to travel. The bridge symbolizes Jesus who took our place on the cross and paid for ALL SIN for ALL PEOPLE if they choose him as Lord and Savior. He according to The Word is the only way to Heaven. We can travel through those weapons Satan forms against us with Jesus, knowing in our spirit, trusting in The Word in our minds and thoughts, speaking The Word as our sWord to thwart the fiery darts of the devil and moving forward through the battles ever confident of God’s love, His grace, His defeat over death, his healing powers, and his promise for provision for ALL of our needs. I know when my BFF’ feet hit the floor everyday, Satan indeed trembles. He is fearful of losing ground with people she loves. The Holy Spirit has been equipping her for this very battle and its not fallen on deaf ears. She is equipped and ready to use the sWord to dismantle the evils ones plans to destroy her witness.

We are going to church in just a few minutes and will praise and worship our Savior. We will be fed by Him who is the Bread of Life. We are not afraid. We stand firm in faith in Him who gives us life and all its blessings. He has gone before her and you as well.

Be enocouraged! Love the Lord with all your heart, mind and soul. Stand firm in faith in Jesus Christ. Encourage yourself by study of His Word. Know His Word and speaking it accordingly to the battles in your life. Do not be dismayed, for He is with you all the days of your life.

Blessings and Peace,
Donna Lee

Who Are You In Christ? Art Journal 1:15

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I think there are far to many Christians living without knowing who they are in Christ Jesus. Understanding who we are in Christ makes a huge difference in how we view ourselves and others.

To get a proper perspective on who we are in Christ Jesus I believe it’s helpful to clearly understand who we are without Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2 is the best resource for this. It’s not pretty or pleasant to read, study, and ponder, but it will give you a greater perspective of the finished work Jesus accomplished for each of us on the cross.

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Ephesians 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
The Father has poured out the spiritual blessings of Heaven upon all who have put their trust in Jesus. Every spiritual need has been met, every spiritual blessing has been fulfilled, and every grace given.

Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption deliverance and salvation through His blood, the (remission) forgiveness of our (offenses shortcomings) and trespasses, in accordance with the riches and the generosity of His gracious favor,

God the Father out of his great love predestined those who would believe to be adopted as his children through faith in his son, Jesus. It’s only through faith in Christ we have a new relationship as the children of God and in that relationship we have a new position. Our relationship gives us right and ownership to the riches of our Heavenly Father. Our position give us privileges related to being part of His family.

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Our Heavenly Father did spare Jesus (His only begotten Son) from death through His resurrection. This same power of God is available to us to keep us from suffering the same and all the other situations that Satan tries to defeat our spirit with in this life. Even in death we know that we will be raised with Christ into our eternal home. This is the power Paul wrote about in Romans 8:31-39. If God be for us, who can be against us? Who will bring any (defeating) charge against those whom God has chosen. No one, Christ who died for our sins and is risen from the grave and who sits at the right hand of God The Father intercedes for you and I! Hallelujah (praise The Lord)! Nothing in this world or in the spirit realm can separate us from the love of Christ! We will face trials and suffer troubles in this world because sin is in the world, but we are more than over-comers through Christ. It’s through the power of the Holy Spirit that we are able to plug into our Savior (our Redeemer and strength) and by His power we will have wisdom, strength, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit to overcome all that the ruler (Satan) of this age throws at us.

Ephesians 1:13-14 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

We all to often allow others in the world to mark us for something. We do it to ourselves as well. Jesus came, died, and rose from the grave so that you and I could live on this earth and in our eternal home Heaven marked solely by Him and for Him. When we surrendered to Him by faith in Jesus as the only begotten son of God we were marked with the seal of God, the Holy Spirit. It’s the only mark we need. In Christ we are set free from others labels that have been put on us.

I Am The Resurrection & The Life – Art Journal 1:14

This Art Journal entry was inspired by Tracy Weinzapel from last weeks Mixed Media Monday webcast. You can watch a replay of the video and join the fun this coming Monday!

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Journal Notes:
God may be leading us into a different life by closing a door or ending a relationship. It may seem like the end of your world, but it’s not. John 10:10 tells us the thief (devil) comes in order to steal, kill and destroy life. Jesus comes that we who believe may have and enjoy life and do so in abundance (blessings).

As Christians we are a new creation in Christ. Matthew 9:16-17 talks about new wine skins and the old wine skins. New wine skin ~ a new life/creation in Christ. The old wine skin is the former self. We need to learn to view ourselves the way that God does.

Life is precious. Do not waste your time dwelling on the past hurt, regret, and failures. Jesus said ‘ I remember your sins no more’. If He who bore the price for your sin doesn’t remember them why are you or anyone’s else dwelling there? If others can’t move forward with you, you do not need them in your life.

A new life means a fresh start and new attitude. If anyone or any church is dragging up the past you need to run from them and find a body of Christ who believes and practices the Word of God. Know who God is and who you are In Christ Jesus. When Satan or anyone else throws something in your face about the former you, tell them whose you are and who you are In Christ. God is not going to give up on you.

Emotions and some memories can bring up old feelings of hurt, sorrow, and anger. Know that just because you feel a certain way, you do not have to give into the emotions and mind set. We have to be determined to run and finish the race before us IN Christ!

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Adopt the attitude that something good is going to happen to you each day. This is the day The Lord has made! I will rejoice and be glad in it. Say it out loud, write on your mirrors, put on a post it note in your car. Sing to The Lord a new song. Say Jesus over and over. Tell him what you are thankful for. Remember His blessings in your past! This is what it means to encourage yourself in The Lord. Do it daily!

John 11:40-44 take off the grave clothes (your old self and ways). You are a new creation In Christ. Cloak yourself in His Word. Get to know Him and allow the Word to transform and renew your mind. Ask Jesus to help you in this journey of studying the Word.

Isaiah 43:18-19 … Do not remember the former things of old…behold I am doing a new thing! Think on what Jesus has done and is doing in your new life. Get a picture of it and dwell on Him and the new life you have. Can you see it through faith? Will give heed to Him? Remember God is not dependent on your circumstances or your past. He is doing a new thing in you!

I am who God says I am. I will rejoice and be glad in knowing who I am in Christ Jesus. Whatever our short comings are, God can help us overcome them as we trust in Him. Make room for Jesus in your life and take steps of faith. Refuse to give up on yourself. God has great plans for you. Jeremiah 29:11.

Remember Zacchaeus? He was so short he could not see Jesus due to the crowd. He did not let that circumstance stand between him and Jesus. He became a tree climber and Jesus recognized his determination and invited himself to his house!

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Craft Notes: Mixed Media paper, acrylic paint, gesso, heavy weight watercolor paper, stencils, Scrapbook paper, alphabet stsmps, Stazon ink, bling, charcoal pencil, permanent marker, Pitt pen, glitter pen,

This was so fast and a lot of fun to create! The longest part was my title and lining up the stamps. To save time I think I should create my title on the computer, print it out, and apply with a gel medium. Thanks Tracy for the inspiration!

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Blessings!
Donna Lee