Worship, Create, Dream

Be free to Worship God. Create with abandonement because He is the Creator. Let's discover our Dreams together.


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HE NEVER QUITS!

Day Fourteen

 

Thank God! He deserves your thanks. His love never quits. Thank the God of all gods, His love never quits. Thank the Lord of all lords. His love never quits.

Psalm 136 :1-3 MSG

Take a second, (or two, depending on where you are sitting and reading this post) Look into the mirror. Who and what do you see?

Today who is the person absorbing the TRUTH of today’s verse?

 No shame involved, just honesty. The best honest deepest most beautiful art, the best reflection of peace where we can breathe will only come as we allow ourselves to be truly honest on a day to day level in our relationship with God.

Spending time with God is not only an experience set aside for a weekend service or prayer before meals. Those are the set up “easy times”. No thought required. The rest of the week takes a bit more work.

Is God part of your Artsy, creative time? On the weekdays when you are living life, do you ask God, “Do You REALLY WANT to spend time with me?” You might remember some pretty icky stuff that started happening on Monday morning. Why would God want to step into that mud?

Here is a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde mirror experience for me.

I started college, the fall right after I accepted Jesus into my heart. I was so excited. This young girl was going to live a life very radical with joy and devotion to Jesus. Because my love for Jesus was huge, I figured everyone else had the same mind set. (Christian College) I hit a brick wall. Not everyone was a nice person. I made dumb choices. Have you been in those situations where you go to bed promising the next day was going to be better? — Vows under your breath so no one hears you. NO MORE DUMB CHOICES. ☹

My heart wanted to go one way and my actions took me another. It is so great that sweet Jesus knows how hard it is trying to keep on the straight and narrow path. On the night He was going to be arrested, Jesus wanted to give His followers some “holy encouragement” to remember because He was aware what was coming. It wasn’t because Jesus felt His friends were all wimps at heart and could not be trusted. In fact, it was because He knew how much they truly cared for Him and the next few days would be tough He shared these words.

There is a part of you that is eager, ready for anything in God. But there’s another part that’s as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.

Matt. 26:41

This may seem harsh, but I can identify with this statement.

I did not like the face in the mirror.

I was not liking the face in the mirror. God’s love did not quit on me though. Finally I quit being lazy inside. The pain in my heart was so huge and I felt so empty. God gently took my hand,”OK- Now you are finally ready to listen and receive.”

Let’s turn to Dr Jekyll’s side. I have graduated. I have moved. I am married. I belong to a really good church. I put on a “everything is great ☺”. The woman looking in the mirror has a different story to tell. She is not going to be the “Ms. Hyde” though. She is REALLY GOOD. Don’t cause problems. That person is accepted. Be the listening ear.

I felt my life was meeting everyone else’s need but did anyone actually know me? Service is good Christian love, but my heart was sometimes very sad. I kept silent for a long time. I would not even dare to look inside or acknowledge there was a seed of a dream in me

I did not like the face in the mirror. Who was she?

Please don’t get the idea my life was horribly dark all the time. I grew to love worship in a deep way through the Holy Spirit. I grew to recognize the reality of an intense relationship between ” My Heavenly Papa” and me. This was also when God’s wonderful love showed me the Dr. Jekyll life was a false label I was not called to live under either.

The similarity between Dr Jekyll and Ms.Hyde, was that my worth came from doing. Was I true to myself or only responding to the needs of others? I felt accepted, I felt important. I would not dare to even think about the “no” word. Insecurity choked me.

How did things change with both Ms. Hyde and Dr. Jekyll?

BY BEING HONEST!

In being honest, God started clearing out my false self and false securities. In the empty space, there was room for the freedom to discover the gifts He always had in store for me.

A winding path, initially uncharted and frightening, is laid out before me.

There are little imps still trying to destroy this journey of creative expression and worship but that is a battle for another post. In this victory, THE CREATOR states I am not alone:

Spending time with THE CREATOR, is freeing me from the shoulds, with no shame attached.

Friends, does this mean I can do anything I want and never do something for another person? NO! That would not be loving and living like Jesus. What it does mean is my heart is free to serve out of the flow I receive from Jesus. It is a freer list handwritten by Jesus. Emily P. Freeman would call it living out my ‘ poema’ https://emilypfreeman.com/a-million-little-ways/

Writing and Photography: This is a dream Dr. Jekyll would have never dared to allow her heart to look into. And yet as the false labels left, space opened up to see places God wanted to take me.

Is the creative path you are on similar to mine? God brings our art, our worship through the the past we have experienced. Our past is not a hindrance. It is the road from which we RECEIVE, REFLECT AND then RESPOND.

The freedom is found in spending time in Him first and then flowing out in your creativity.

God’s Love Never Quits. God does not call you to DO.  He asks you to BE. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––


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Through a transformation program called Faithwalking and recognizing I am a Type 4 in the Enneagram. 1 I am SLOWLY discovering how to show up as the person God Created and am being freed through Jesus.

1 To read more about the Enneagram you can go to THE ROAD BACK TO YOU by Ian Cron https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28268515-the-road-back-to-you

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Can Art Counsel?

Day Thirteen  

16 Let the word of the Anointed One richly inhabit your lives. With all wisdom teach, counsel, and instruct one another. Sing the psalms, compose hymns and songs inspired by the Spirit, and keep on singing—sing to God from hearts full and spilling over with thankfulness.

Colossians 3:16 (Voice)

There are so may ways to express worship. God created you Just the Way You Are with fantastic gifts arranged in a unique fashion. Our challenge at times is to find which is the best flow in worship and obedience.

16 Let the word of Christ dwell richly among you, in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another through psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs,[a] singing to God with gratitude in your hearts .

Colossians 3;16 CSB

Is there space in your heart for this message? I would like you to think about your art as a gift as you take God’s Hand. You have absolute permission to create and express gratitude to God through your ART.

  Do you sing your heart out to God in your creativity, in your life, in your being? Do you give silent thanksgiving for all He is and all He has done or does it flow into your art?

As I was listening to a heavy rain shower, I wanted to create an artistic expression- Music of Nature. The CREATOR shares His abundant Art with no boundaries. As ripples in a pond grow wider and wider, the same happens to us. Our connection will grow deeper and deeper as we take time to listen and RECEIVE. How do you REFLECT and RESPOND to this gift?

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This free website art piece was fun to expand upon around the borders. Do you see my message? As a creative, we can connect to God in a special way, to listen and then express.

Who teaches, counsels and instructs? Can your art do that?

The painting of a child and her father is teaching a sermon to a soul in pain needing to forgive. A written article and photo cries out concerning the horrors of human trafficking. This is instruction! A delightful nature photo of squirrels enjoying just being squirrels counsels a grumpy person to see life through a different lens and changes his day. Through an artist listening to God’s Heart, someone was taught, instructed, and counseled. Did the artist put the creative piece out there, demanding a response? No. I think she listened to God’s request and said “Yes”. The results were left in God’s hands.

To know and experience life so what flows from you is His truth, it is important to spend time with the One Who cares for you as no one else can. The abundant love you receive as you engage, will flow into your art.

This is my gift for you today. Go deep into the joy of the relationship between The Creator and you.


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I Have a New Life.

Day Twelve

 He came to save us. It’s not that we earned it by doing good works or righteous deeds; He came because He is merciful. He brought us out of our old ways of living to a new beginning through the washing of regeneration; and He made us completely new through the Holy Spirit, who was poured out in abundance through Jesus the Anointed, our Savior.

Titus 3:5-6 Voice

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Receive your new life.
Reflect upon your new life.
Respond to what you Received.

RECEIVE

REFLECT


RESPOND

 Where do you go when the “insecurity imps” start their little tap dance on your creative juices? Do you begin to wonder- “am I really cut out for this?” 

Or, are you one of those types who are so confident in who you are, what you are doing, no matter what the outside conditions? You march forward against all odds. I am not criticizing if this is your bent. I say Bless you!

I am not one of those creatures. I do claim I am a NEW CREATION in Christ and I am honest to state I face a “fear” battle on a regular basis. This is not fun. I love writing, love creating, love the combination of photography with words. I really can’t see expressing in another fashion right now. This is my explosive release of God’s Heart and Joy that He shares with me. Can I say no to this? ——

At times it is an intense emotional battle just to keep going. I need to make the decision to continue putting one creative step in front of the other. The inner fear is real. The battle is real.

Is the battle wrong? Does it mean I am wrong to continue? Is this God’s voice saying I am in the wrong activity because I have emotional challenges? Would a person who is battling cancer be considered doing something wrong? I think not. How are these two situations the same you ask? The person with cancer did not ask for this sickness. She does have a choice how to deal with the emotional challenges that will attack her as she is walking this path. It is not easy but she can turn to God to give her the strength to see life through His Lens.

I recognize I have a strong emotional reaction to situations. I personally did not ask for the strong negative emotional battle. Am I wrong because I am experiencing these emotions while I am creating? My choice is see what is happening on this path and ask God to give to give me strength to see the situation through His Lens.

Naming the triggers or recognizing when the anxiety is starting to attack is something I am VERY SLOWLY becoming more aware of. Slowing Down and Breathing, may make the difference between a peaceful acceptance of recognizing who I am as a Daughter of the King or wanting to throw in the towel. I need to deeply take this in, not only hear it on the surface and just agree with the words.

Example :

I was prepared. My written piece was ready for the workshop.  This was not the first time I had something of mine critiqued. I felt confident in what I was sharing and was willing to receive any comments (positive or negative) on how it could be improved.  The presentation went well. The interaction was good.

It was on the way home where my triggers kicked in:

 Negative emotions – shame, comparison, doubt flooded my heart. The workshop itself was a positive experience, but in the car , I was either tossing around in my mind only negative comments or analyzing the comments through a negative filter. My brain turned off and my Type 4’s Type 2, high strung, “needing to please everyone” emotions took over. ( Taken from Enneagram information 1). I got home and was miserable.☹

I wanted hide under a blanket. I declared this post to be a nonredeemable piece and I am not a writer.  (Of course no one in the group really said that.)

 Fear and insecurity cocked it’s head, waved it’s finger and claimed I had no rights to say I am creative.

If I were to stay there under that blanket, who wins?

10 For we are the product of His hand, heaven’s poetry etched on lives, created in the Anointed, Jesus, to accomplish the good works God arranged long ago.
Eph. 2 (Voice)
Don’t Quit

Certainly not God. Certainly not the One who created me to be His Masterpiece.

Whether it is celebrating while doing laundry or rejoicing in His promises as I color or write, I am made to go forward in worship and creating.

Creating, worship, freedom comes in many forms and sizes. Listen to God’s Heart.
A journal is a fantastic place to be honest when the real battle is happening. Express your prayers in words. Write down what God shares with you.

When you spend time with the Father, and express His heart, but the response does not come out as you had hoped, you need to recognize what is going on inside. There may be pain. There is a battle going on. God has given you a gift to share. God has given you His heart.

Be free with all the paints and colors to be messy.

Allow yourself to stand beneath the warm water of His love.  The gentle flow of the water will wash the sticky ickies off your body.  

“Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

Romans 8:26 MSG

Enjoy the gifts He has given to you. Be free to share His Heart. Be honest as you walk this path of worship and creativity.

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What Can I Do?

Day Eleven

4 Mighty King, lover of justice, you have established fairness. You have acted with justice and righteousness throughout Israel.

Psalm 99 NLT

Welcome to Your rule in peace and beauty.

Even with the beauty of your art, there is a fierce truth of who is in control.

Today the winds roar and the waves strike the shore. This is still your control.

As creatives, our own path may engage in the world of blooming flowers or freezing waters and harsh waves. It is not our choice as to the surroundings when we wake up. God is in control of Nature. We say “Yes”, grab our camera or our journal and participate in what is happening. We want to join God in what He is doing.

If we are sensitive, if we are willing to listen, God may ask us to join Him in other activities with our creativity.

That is exactly what happened to me when I opened the book The Slave Across the Street, by Therese Flores. The pain I felt for this woman (she was 15 years old at the time she experienced her trauma) made me want to take steps on behalf of the real human girls and boys, young women and young men, held in the clutches of human trafficking.

God is a Mighty King. He fights for Justice. We have the opportunity to ask Him how the art and creativity He gave us, can be used to join Him against this injustice.

This path is not easy. It is pain filled and harsh so a good first step, as suggested in Emily P. Freeman’s book, THE NEXT RIGHT THING,1 would be check out if God wants you to join Him in this battle. The battle is out there and turning a blind eye will not make it go away. It does not mean everyone is cut out for this particular journey, so prayer and direction is important.

Getting educated on the definition of human trafficking and the different types can be a next step. As writers and creative people, reading the stories of survivors will bring you into their soul. Biographies are not pretty, but it is one of the best ways to make it tangible and real.

What are the organizations in your city, in the nation or internationally that speak to you? Do you look into the sad face of a little girl in Cambodia and weep? I typed in the words “art fighting human trafficking”. The amount of information was huge. There is an opportunity for artists and creatives to speak out.

RECEIVE, REFLECT, RESPOND.

RECEIVING is taking in, collecting information. Ask God how you are to participate in this battle for freedom.

As you collect information, give yourself quality time with God to engage and hear His Heart. REFLECT. What is He saying on this war? Share how you feel. Do you hear Him calling your name to join in this battle? Ask God for His directions for you?

How does God want you to RESPOND? Causing other people to become aware of this injustice through your poems or art may be the beginning for this journey. Could there be a deeper, more intense response being asked of you? Donating funds to one of the organizations you researched might be an option. Are you being drawn to physically participate in an organization by using your creative skills? Sound scary? Too big for your capabilities? If God is calling you, the directions will be His leading. Remember Moses started out as a “stutterer with a stick”.

A national organization you can start out with for art is https://www.unodc.org/newyork/en/artists-united-against-human-trafficking.html I am not totally informed about this organization. It was one of the links I found concerning “art against trafficking”

Another organization to look at is https://twitter.com/IJM for basic other information. I do receive information concerning this organization.

I would love to hear how God might ask you to creatively respond.

Our ART is a Gift God has shared with us. How are we to share it with the world.?

“Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”
― Benjamin Franklin

goodread quotes

The words of survivors reveals the reality of the cruelty and the beauty in freedom in a way nothing else can. If you go to this site about Therese book, you will find other recommendations https://www.amazon.com/Slave-Across-Street-Theresa-Flores-ebook/dp/B0034KYZQ8

1 Emily P. Freeman, The Next Right Thing (Grand Rapid, MI:Revell,2019)