Gratitude / Ephesians 1

BAJ:mixedmedia:projectlifecards:Sue Carroll

Anyone who has known me for very long, knows that Ephesians 1 is one of my favorite passages.

In it, we are told that we are BLESSED (with EVERY spiritual blessing), LOVED, CHOSEN, HOLY, BLAMELESS, ADOPTED, REDEEMED, FORGIVEN, PREDESTINED…making know to us the MYSTERY OF HIS WILL, according to His KIND INTENTION…WE have obtained and INHERITANCE…being sons and daughters of the KING.

Ephesians 1:1-14

To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him 1with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him 11 also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, 12 to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory. 13 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.

BAJ:mixedmedia:projectlifecards:process:Sue Carroll

This post could be miles long…so much has been happening…

My husband and I have sold our home and are  ‘homeless” for 6 weeks…

So, as I sit here alone in our hotel room tonight, I am COMPLETELY OVERWHELMED with God’s goodness, and provision.

My oldest son and his beautiful wife (both reflections of Christ)  have been blessed with the privilege of bringing home their precious son who has been in the NICU for 4 months…fighting for his life.

Through it all, they never left Ethan’s side, as they stood firm…trusting God for whatever would be His will…

“But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that through me the proclamation might be fully accomplished, and that all the Gentiles might hear; and I was rescued out of the lion’s mouth.” -2 Tim 4:17

Ethan is home.

All praise to the Father.

In the corner of our room, I pulled out my art supplies, turned up my Kari Jobe Station on Pandora, covered our little table with foil, and began to worship.

No matter what trials happen in our lives we have the assurance that this is not our home…this is not “all there is” and in Christ Jesus we are already

BLESSED (with EVERY spiritual blessing), LOVED, CHOSEN, HOLY, BLAMELESS, ADOPTED, REDEEMED, FORGIVEN, PREDESTINED…making know to us the MYSTERY OF HIS WILL, according to His KIND INTENTION…WE have obtained and INHERITANCE…being sons and daughters of the KING.

I am overwhelmed with gratitude for God’s provision.

In the BIG healing, through teams of skilled physicians… to the quiet comfort & strength of caring nurses and lifted prayers from so many friends and family.

BAJ:mixedmedia:projectlifecards:5:Sue Carroll

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Miracle Boy…Child of God

BAJ:mixedmedia:projectlifecards:loved:Sue Carroll

BAJ:mixedmedia:projectlifecards:closeup:Sue Carroll

How can our God love us so?

I don’t know…but I BELIEVE that He does.


Doodle 101 / Moving On

BAJ:Doodle101:Moving On : Sue Carroll:

I’ve been having a hard time trying to write this post.  The boxes are finally all packed and the movers are here.  We are leaving our home of 17 years…from a community I have spent all but 4 of my 52 years.  It is definitely bittersweet.

Unlike my husband, I do like change, but I must admit that although I have never been “tied” to things…this property (2.5 acres of beautiful space, trees, gardens, and pool, tucked away on private drive) has been our oasis.  A home of rest and peace.

We will be homeless for about 6 weeks, until our new build is finished.  2 weeks here, 1 week there…finally, moving our youngest into his freshman dorm, before we step into the next chapter of our lives.

God has taught me, through many trials, that we “stupid sheep” have a tendency to look back…re-step, where we have been…even if it is not a good place. We go back because it is familiar to us.  It is what we know.

A wise teacher once said, “we must build up our track record of faith (trusting God) so that it becomes greater than our old ways…the track record of our past…a past without reliance on the Holy Spirit to guide. For many of us, we have spent more time there in that past.

“forgetting what lies behind, and reaching forward to what lies ahead.” -Phil 3:13

Yes, some things we should forget. Lies the enemy has tricked us into believing.  Pain and suffering that has caused us to see others, ourselves and even God from a distorted view.

BUT…it is also good to remember where we’ve been.  It reminds us of God’s goodness and the rescue He has made.  As we share the process, others can see the things we have overcome, through Christ… and they will see God’s glory.  Praise Him for He is GOOD!

It is good to remember, as long as we don’t “live” there anymore.

Here’s to the next chapter of our lives.

I am thankful for where I have been, and where I am going…

“God has been with me through it all.”  (Colton Dixon)



Doodle 101 / Believe through the Holy Spirit

BAJ:Doodle101:BelievethroughtheHolySpiritpm:Sue Carroll

I have a new and very beautiful internet friend named Shraddha. We have been chatting about doodles, and our inspiration for them, and she shared with me that she has had a picture in her mind and heart about the process of believing… that our belief comes from God’s heart.  That through the Him, we are lifted up to see above what we are beneath.  (not her exact words, but what I think I am hearing her say)

…as if our belief has wings to lift us up.

We can ONLY know (believe) the “things” of God through the revelation of His Spirit.

“but just as it is written, “things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.  For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God.”  -1 Cor 2:9, 10

Because God created us to love and be loved by Him and through Him, all revelation is rooted in His great LOVE for us!

1 Cor 2 goes on to say that as God reveals truth to us through the Holy Spirit, that we can “have a mind like Christ!”  Why do we settle for our limited human perspective?!

“So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” -Romans 10:17

I think Shraddha has it right!  This visual, of God ‘s love pouring over and through us, revealing Himself to us… gives us the ability to be free from the “gravity” of “the world” that holds us down.  As we abide in Him, He takes us above our circumstances to see beyond our limited view…to a place where we can love without being overcome by our self centered focus.

Our lens becomes much wider…when we can see the bigger picture, our difficult circumstances diminish.

“For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”    -Romans 10:10

Shraddha asked me if I might try and doodle this idea.  It’s a simple doodle…feeling a bit humbled by the more beautiful imagery she shared with me, but here’s my first “go of it.”

For you Shraddha! Thank you for sharing your heart with me!

It is such a joy to connect with sisters from all over the world.  A privilege…an honor.

BAJ/Doodle101/BelievethroughtheHolySpirit/Sue Carroll



Doodle 101 / Pour

BAJ/Doodle101/POUR:Sue Carroll

Good Morning!  Busy couple weeks for me…catering part of a very special wedding, moving & building a new home, teaching classes… to name a few fun activities!  A hectic and changing season of life for me…one that I am in great need of receiving and “extra portion” of what the Holy Spirit so generously will provide…as long as I am willing to surrender.

I don’t know about you, but even when I know the importance of allowing God to lead me in every detail of my life, I keep the “reigns” of the things I need to let go of the most!

This visual of God’s extravagant love being poured out in abundance helps me to remember that I am thirsty and need to drink!!

13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”

-John 4:13,14

If you carry your water around with you during the day, why not tape on this verse as a reminder to drink of the living water! Wouldn’t it be great to read that (and “listen) every time you took a sip?!!!

BAJ/Doodle101/POUR/Sue Carroll



Mixed Media Doodle / Bible Art Journaling with Masking Fluid

BAJ/Mixed Media Doodle/ Sue Carroll

“For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse”  -Romans 1:20

Bible Art Journaling/Mixed Media Doodle/Sue Carroll

I started this piece by writing the word “Believe” on watercolor paper with Art Masking Fluid.  Once I finished applying all the paint, gesso and heavy gesso (and all where dry) I rubbed off the masking fluid with my finger.

BAJ:Mixed Media Doodle1:Sue Carroll

Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 5.56.20 AMThere are many brands to chose from…you can even find a bottle that has a small brush or pen like applicator.  I applied it with a round paint brush.  When using a paint brush, make sure you clean it right away with warm soapy water.

For a GREAT article on masking fluid go here.

Bible Art Journaling/Mixed Media Doodle/Sue Carroll

Below is a practice page in my Bible.  I did the same process on a page in the back titled “Weights and Measures.”  I wanted to make sure the masking fluid would come off without tearing my Bible page.  I would suggest working fairly quickly.  Allowing the masking fluid to sit on your page for too long, may make it harder to rub off without tearing your page.  After you apply the fluid, you can start painting as soon as you can touch it without it coming off on your finger.  I  waited about 10 minutes.

BAJ-Mixed Media Doodle-Biblepage-Sue Carroll

Feel free to ask questions if you have any!