Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Artist of My Soul

     I'm an artist. Not a very good one, but it has been a big part of my life. When I am focused on where the next brush stroke goes, or how to mix red and blue to get that perfect shade of purple, then I'm not thinking about how afraid I am that my daughter has been called back for an ultrasound of her breast.
    Painting is my escape from the world. Yet when I'm depressed I have a hard time painting. I guess that I'm so closed up that the creative juices can't flow. I've been painting quite a bit lately, which is a good sign of my mental state.
    I received a gift, a "God Thing", when we moved into this house. An accomplished artist who lives down the street stopped by to ask if she could take pictures of my sheep so she could paint them. When she found out that I was an artist, she invited me to a painting group of 7 or 8 ladies who meet at her house every other Thursday to paint. That has become such a blessing to me.
    As I'm writing this, I'm looking out my window at the vibrant leaves of red, orange and gold that are gracing the trees in our area this autumn. I'm amazed at the artistry of God. His colors take my breath away.
    We all have a share of God's creativity because He lives in us. Let's unleash it. For you it may be painting, or writing. Maybe it's decorating a house or an office. Maybe it's the creative way you raise your children; maybe it's dressing them. Maybe it's dressing you.
    Whatever it is, let it out. Be guided by the creativity God gave you. Use it to glorify Him.
"Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens," James 1:17. NLT

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


    I wrote last time about the two pygmy goats we bought. Going to a new place so traumatized them that they still won't get close to my husband or me. My daughter and two little granddaughters visited last weekend. My daughter is an animal lover extraordinaire. She spent a couple of hours sitting close to them. With upmost patience she sang songs to them and offered them food and they started coming up to her.
    You know, God has been like that with me. With upmost patience He waited for me to come to my senses and draw close to Him. He shouldn't have cared about me, a loose mess who found herself neck deep in sin and anchored to depression. With boundless grace, mercy, love and patience He pulled me out of the dark pit I was in and set me on His solid rock.
 "He reached down from heaven and rescued me; He drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me.  They attacked me at a moment when I was in distress, but the Lord supported me. He led me to a place of safety, He rescued me because He delights in me", Psalm 18:16-19.

Monday, October 7, 2013

A Matter of Trust

   We brought two pygmy goats home to our little sheep farm last Thursday. The idea is to keep them in a small pasture on the side of our house that is overgrown with shrub. Goats supposedly like to eat that sort of vegetation.
    So we drive out to a farm to get them and bring them home in a large dog crate. We had pictured opening the crate and watching them calmly walk out and into our lives. But in reality, they jumped out of that crate and lit out like jackrabbits. We had no idea goats could run and jump like that. They ran lickedy-split all over our barnyard with the two guard dogs in pursuit. Even our sweet pet lamb, Rosemary, got into the chase. They ran through a pasture, into the farthest corner, and hid behind a telephone pole.
    It has taken us four days to try to calm them down. They spent their first two days behind that telephone pole. Nothing we tried would cause them to venture out. We finally decided to move them to a pen where they could see the other animals and get used to all of us. So we trapped them in their corner with a piece of fencing and carried them kicking and squealing to their new home.
    We put a doghouse "igloo" in their pen for shelter, laid out water and food, and waited patiently for them to get over their trauma and realize we could be trusted. Every day we pull chairs into their pen and sit and watch them. They are just beginning to come out of their corner to sniff us and the food
and stick their heads in the "igloo". Small steps but progress just the same.
    This has given me a fresh picture of my relationship with God. He has provided for me everything I need. He desires to take good care of me. His ways are always best for me. He has promised to never leave me alone. Yet I'm often afraid to trust Him and cautious to follow His ways. Sometimes He still has to pull me kicking and screaming from something He knows is harmful for me.
    Only when I can see Him as my Good Shepherd, my Great Physician, and the Refuge of my soul,
will I be able to let go of my fears and my rebellious ways. When I realize that He has given me all that I need, I will know that "He lets me rest in green meadows; He leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to His name",
Psalm 23:2-3.

"But I trust in Your unfailing love. I will rejoice because You have rescued me. I will sing to the Lord because He is good to me", Psalm 13:5-6.