Living an ART filled life…“Creativity is a God-given ability to take something ordinary and make it into something special. It is an openness to doing old things new ways…The creative spirit is part of our heritage as children of the One who created all things. And nurturing our creativity is part of our responsibility as stewards of God’s good gifts.” – Emilie Barnes, The Spirit of Loveline
A friend of mine, asked me to help lend a visual for a tent. After studying Acts 2:26 in Women’s Bible Study, it’s what comes to my mind whenever I think of, or see a tent:)
Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope (NIV)
This same verse is written like this in The Message
“I’m glad from the inside out, ecstatic; I’ve pitched my tent in the land of hope.”
Thinking about tents a little further, I created a list of ”attributes”
Supported by an organized structure (The Church)
Held up by it’s frame (Truth)
Tied or “rooted” to the ground (Faith)
Abraham left all He had known to obey the Lord’s command and follow Him to a place that was foreign, and for a time, temporary. He lived in tents, and looked forward to the “city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.”
While we dwell here on earth, in our temporary home, let us “pitch our tent, in the land of hope!” For we can rest in the promise, that we will one day live in “a city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God!”
Revelation 21: Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,”for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bridebeautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
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Beth’s Message comes from Romans 14. “How to Love When We Disagree!” You can listen below…I promise you will be greatly encouraged by it!
A Spring Bible Study Session that includes Bullet Journaling
WEEK 4 / The Virtue Of Contentment
Small Group Discussion Outline
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Rejoice in the Lord always because He is near. Replace anxiety and fear with grateful prayer in every situation and the peace of God will be yours. His peace will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. To live “right” you must replace “wrong” thinking. Focus your thoughts on righteous things. (Noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellen, praiseworthy) PRACTICE what you the Lord has taught you.
12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus
Commit and take hold of the purpose you have in Christ, forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead. Keep moving toward the Lord, for He is the “prize” …and our goal is becoming like Christ for eternity.
-In what areas of your life do you find it hard to experience
joy? —-> roots? (Fear, worry, anxiety, pain)
2 Timothy 1:7
Do you access God’s power in your life?
Why or why not?
Do you lack peace? Could lack of peace (relating to lack of joy) be a measure of God’s power in your life?
How can you operate (day to day) in God’s power? (Practical application)
(“Do not be anxious about anything, in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” )
– Phil 4:6,7
–What do you think Paul means when he says: “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus”?
-Why do our hearts and minds need guarding?
Above all else, guard your heart for everything you do flows from it. -Proverbs 4:23
“Our voluntary thoughts not only reveal what we are, they predict what we will become. All conscious behavior is preceded by and arises out of our thoughts. THE WILL CAN BECOME A SERVANT OF THE THE THOUGHTS AND TO A LARGE DEGREE, OUR EMOTIONS FOLLOW OUR THINKING.” (Insights from Tozer)
–Can you explain wrong thinking vs. righteous thinking?
(Limited human thoughts vs. thinking with a mind like Christ)
(Wrong thinking leads to wrong action which leads to conflict and distortion of truth)
READ: 2 Corinthians 10:5
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
–How can we actively take every thought captive?
-Were you able to focus on your thoughts this week? (Whatever is true, noble, etc.)
-What does Paul mean when he says “not that I have obtained all this”
(Achieved perfection, still growing…)
WEARE A WORK IN PROGRESS, NEVER ARRIVING AT THE FINAL GOAL UNTIL THE “DAY OF COMPLETION.
“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” -Philippians 1:6
Phil 3: 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
–Do you tend to look back or dwell on the past?
-How can this be avoided?
You don’t drive by looking in the mirror. You drive by looking ahead out of the windshield. But it’s helpful to take occasional glances in your mirror and use the information to make decisions about how to drive safely in the present and future. But if you spend too much time looking in your mirror, you’ll probably crash because you’re not paying attention to the present.
In the same way, we need to take periodic glances backward, but we also need to put the past (good and bad) behind us, accept God’s grace which enables us for the present…moving on with what He is calling us to do now
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” -Ephesians 2:10
-Were you able to spend some time prayerfully processing your gifts and purpose? (Bullet Journal exerice) Did God give you insight this week?
-Do you live a purposeful life? It is something you think about or talk to God about?
Below are some images of the Dutch door pages we used this week to record prayerful consideration of our purpose.
Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. -Paul
Our ultimate goal is to move forward each day —>becoming more like Christ…operating in the good purpose God has called us each to, as we utilize the gifts He has blessed us with for our unique calling.
Below is a second Dutch door layout to stay intentional with our thoughts leaning into what Paul instructed in Philippians 4:4-9
AND…to stay aware of our daily goal to keep moving towards God and not away from Him.
The bottom daily “Digital Detox” area is to focus on putting down our phones so that we can be present!
I’ve included a few Doodle 101 handouts I gave to my class this week 🙂
A photo of our class project is below. We used Acrylic paint on water color paper, black microns, white uni-ball signo, stencils and stamps for background:)
Hope my post today is a help to you on your Spiritual Journey with the Lord! Next week, I will post a few more Bullet Journal spreads as well as a review of our study The Virtue of Contentment.
A Spring Bible Study Session that includes Bullet Journaling
Small Group Discussion Outline
1 Timothy 6:3-10
3 If anyone teaches otherwise and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, 4 they are conceited and understand nothing. 5 They have an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions 5 and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.
6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
It is crucial to believe that the Whole Council of God (The Bible) is (the ultimate) truth and provides sound instruction for our daily lives. Apart from the revelation we receive through the Holy Spirit, we cannot understand the ways of God. If we try to reason with our limited human mind, we are often led by pride and understand nothing. If we lean to our own understanding we develop unhealthy interests (often self focused) which draw us to controversy, quarrel, envy….(corrupted minds) We are robbed of truth pursing (little g) godliness for personal gain. Temptations are traps that lead to destruction. Love of money is a root of all evil and leads to grief. / “Pride comes before the Fall.”
All of these things separate us from our Father, and keep us in a state of discontentment.
Do Not Worry
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Life is more than food and clothing. These physical necessities will not yield fruit (love joy peace patience, etc.) God provides ALL we need if we rely on Him.
“Look at the birds of the air”, if the Father provides for them, He most assuredly provides for His children!
Worry and anxiety create chaos and “does not add a single hour to our life.”
The Father knows our every need, and if we seek FIRST HIS Kingdom and His righteousness all these things (that we need) will be given to us as well. Our God is a promise keeper.
Live one day at a time, relying on God, moment by moment, through our helper the Holy Spirit.
IN THE WORKBOOK
1 TIMOTHY 6:3-10
Our truth meter is God’s Word. (The sound instruction of Jesus Christ)
Read Acts 17:11 / What does this instruct us to do?
(Measure all teaching with God’s Word for yourself. Don’t assign truth to anything you are taught without searching the scriptures yourself to see if it is true)
11 Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica,for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scripturesevery day to see if what Paul said was true.
Another word for conceit is pride. Pride leads us to turn inward, placing ourselves at the center of our focus. What are the results of this kind of thinking?
(self focus, lack of empathy, division, lack of compassion for others, inability to give sacrificial love, need for control, stepping into God’s shoes, frustration)
In what ways has pride come before the fall in your life or those close to you?
PRIDE LEADS TO DISCONTENTMENT BECAUSE IT CAUSES US TO TURN INWARD (self focus) AND AWAY FROM GOD. Pride leads us to the pursuit of ourselves (being right, financial gain, division) and takes us down a road of destruction.
“It is impossible to be content when our hearts are SET on gaining MORE. A desire for godliness (placed before God) is quickly eroded by a greedy covetous spirit. (Pg 52)
Good deeds or godly behavior can be a source of pride in our lives.
Read Matthew 23:25-28
25 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.
27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.
-Did anyone in your group do the PRAISE LOG? (See Example below)
-Was this practice helpful in —-> replacing “cravings/desires” (& pride) with gratitude
-Were you able to record some of the things you are anxious about?
-How do you try to handle these worries on your own?
How does this relate to pride?
-Were you more aware of giving these worries and fears to the Lord this week?
Trusting God to provide all our needs requires obedience
“When God instructs us to do something based on our knowledge of Him, He moves our relationship from mental to experiential. God doesn’t just want us to hear about Him, but to see and experience Him in our lives.” -Priscilla Shirer
Contentment is something we can learn. We heard this from Paul in our first week. So, why does it continue to elude us? We tend to keep tripping over the most common stumbling blocks that prevent us from living the life of Contentment God created us for. This week we took a closer look at Pride and Anxiety.
Our Father is very clear…we should not rely on our own (human) understanding…
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and He will make your paths straight. -Proverbs 3:5-6
Leaning on our own limited thinking, leads us to a place of pride where we have no true understanding of truth…this leads to self focus & discontentment.
God is also clear that He is to be our sole provider. We can trust Him, for He has proven to be faithful. Lack of trust in our Sovereign God leads to anxiety and fear….this moves us further from contentment.
The bullet journal exercises this week, are to help instill a practice of releasing our fear and anxiety to the Lord. (Worry Jar)
We are to work on replacing our pride with praise, and to work on stepping out in obedience as we become more aware of the role pride plays in our life and relationships—->To recognize it, and then surrender our behavior as we listen to the Lord’s correction and redirection through the Holy Spirit. As we are able to set aside our pride (through the help of the Holy Spirit), God will allow us to see beyond our limited understanding to see with His perspective…Beyond the circumstance we are in, to the hope He has for us! This develops fruit in our lives, and leads us to Contentment, and living a life like Christ.
Watercolor, Unity Stamp, StazOn black ink pad, Micron 005 & 01, Bold white uniball-signo pen.
FOR THE PRINTABLE/TRACEABLE script above click on the image for pdf
A special welcome if you are new here! It’s an honor and a privilege to connect with so many Sisters in Christ ❤
Today, I’m beginning with a bit of a confession…
Lately, I have been “focusing” on improving my watercolor techniques. I am a self taught doodler, with no formal art training. (Other than freshman high school art! Thank you Ms. Marsh!) I have so much to learn!
Yesterday, after spending several hours working with watercolor, (twice the time I spent with God) a twitter post from Lysa TerKeurst came across my iPad screen.
“A good heart check for today: Whatever is holding our attention the most is what we’re truly worshipping.” -Lysa Terkeurst
OUCH! The Holy Spirit grabbed my attention in that moment, and caused me to evaluate my time management, which was quite telling of my focus & my heart.
So, I quit what I was working on, and got back to the business of prayer and study.
Later last night, I went to find that quote. It was still “on my heart” and I wanted to create a visual to remember it!
I have a twitter account, but I don’t really use it. I am so technically challenged, that I don’t even know why her tweet came across my screen?!!! 😂
ANYWAY, I was searching google for her twitter feed from yesterday, and the quote below came up from a few years ago…
”Wherever we focus our attention the most, will become the driving force in our lives.” -Lysa TerKeurst
Well, that was right on point too! God, are you trying to tell me something?!
I think so.
I LOVE creating. I could sit and draw, paint, doodle…all day long. That is a misuse of the precious time the Lord has given me to share of His glory and fulfill the purpose He has made me for….I need to listen to the Holy Spirit regarding balance in my life.
I finished this visual today and thought I would share it with all of you!