Here’s how it goes around here. I paint abstract landscapes or girls angelic, occasionally a flower and a couple of days ago, 3 peaches. I have pencil sketches of a nude figure with a slightly askew bun. It’s beautiful, graceful and free, a departure for me.
Me: What does this painting make me you think of?
GT: Uhmmmm….A sky? Water? A woman? Sunflowers?
Me: Did you notice the peaches painting?
GT: Yeah, I saw the big peach, it was big.
Me: No, there are 3.
I suppose it’s a good thing he doesn’t get too much into the sanctuary of my “business” and that whatever I paint, yeah that’s good.
Like the time I spent a week trying to paint the likeness of Jimi Hendrix only to consistently find myself staring at James Brown.
He swore it was Jimi. It for sure wasn’t.
That piece was covered over with freedom and resulted in a woodsy set of illuminated pines.
I love the peaches, the three of them.
“Three Sweet Peaches” is available now. Other art can be purchased at Artisan Market and Decor in Aiken or at the award winning spot with Chef Brandon Velie, Juniper in Ridge Spring, SC. Y’all, you must dine there!
“In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.” But you were unwilling, and you said, “No! We will flee upon horses”; therefore you shall flee away; and, “We will ride upon swift steeds”; therefore your pursuers shall be swift.”
Isaiah 30:15-16 ESV
Pursued by everything others say you need, promising it will turn your door’s key to peace causing confusion, exhaustion until you return.
Return to the place that simply lets you be.
The place God says this is you.
This is yours.
The places with no parameters, expectation or restraint.
I stood in front of my new easel for three hours last night. I, thanks to the newlyweds, have a proper easel.
It stands tall to accommodate large pieces.
I painted a piece in a newly free way of layering. Colors in little prism like squares creating ideas of form and figure.
I’ll layer a little more later.
This morning I pondered the biblical idea of abiding.
Of remaining confident when there’s no reason to be sure simply because you know you are close to God.
You slow down long enough, briefly at first until you discover, I am okay, I’ve been at peace a little while now.
Of being where you are even though you can’t see clearly where you’re going.
“For we live by faith, not by sight.”
2 Corinthians 5:7
Of starting and allowing God to lead, much like a blank canvas you approach and begin with a certain color to continue with sweet consolation.
I like what this is saying. I am content with what I’ve conveyed here.
I’m so glad I began again, taking away what was planned and letting another idea develop.
Stripping away the too many perfect layers to leave the impression of a beauty, imperfect and spontaneous.
Yes. I cannot wait to be back there.
Abiding is simply staying in the place you feel most safe.
The place of the little corner room, soft songs about grace and love blending blue-grassy vibe with truth about staying here.
Where you belong, the place God made you for, the place of quiet confidence.
Present with God.
The place you sense most clearly that you are known, your longings have been observed by God, the place you believe you matter, you are a part of God’s story.
The morning story that reminds you, mercies are new all the time and His faithfulness has surely been great every moment.
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.” John 15:9
Where do you go that causes you to wonder why your return was delayed?
Do you sit with your fingers on keys finding soft notes at first becoming clearly stronger as time passes, you and the piano, maybe a guitar or a horn?
Do you put your hands deep into the soil and seed of flora or bright vibrant leaves?
Do you allow them to linger when you realize your hands are mingling with growth, God’s glory?
Do you sit with no agenda watching the anticipated rain come in?
Linger longer in the places that mean abiding for you.
Rest for our souls, maybe long overdue.
Space enough to remember.
You are strong.
Stronger than you know.
Continue and believe.
This piece is a mixed media collage using acrylic, paper and oil pastel. It is 20 x 38. Comment if interested.
“ …there is no God like you in all of heaven above or on the earth below.”
1 Kings 8:23 NLT
I would stand close by and wait, watch and contribute as I was told.
My mama, in her kitchen, I watched as she prepped the meat for the main meal to add a pound cake for later.
In the intervals of ingredients, she rarely gave a measure.
She’d answer with “that’s enough” or “a little more”.
Rarely did she let me add too much. She knew that wound spoil it all. The flour would be mixed with the sugar. It would be impossible to separate the two.
We would have to start over.
In all my years of helping bake cake, that was never the case.
The measure of the two ingredients was always enough to take the next step, to add in the eggs one at a time and the butter.
The cake came out right. Consistently moist with the sweet thick light brown crust.
This morning I made a list of three things I’d like to believe without interruption, three things that would never go away, be not enough.
“You were running the race so well. Who has held you back from following the truth?”
Galatians 5:7 NLT
Belief in possibility
Assurance of God’s love
Someone may be reading this and asking how is it that she doesn’t know these things?
I sat just now and countered each need with truth. Because see, in this world we live in the stuff that gets mixed in gets us mixed up.
Self-control is my decision. Every decision begins with a thought. God’s spirit will be my guide.
“Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.”
Ephesians 4:23 NLT
All things are possible. This truth is for me. It is God’s desire that I allow my heart, not my mind, to lead.
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.”
Psalms 37:4 NLT
God’s love is immeasurable. It is unwavering.
“No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:39 NLT
I told someone yesterday I’ve been dreaming about my mama. I told her I think it’s because my daughter’s about to have a baby. She smiled and added she thinks that’s so sweet. I told her she’d understand one day, for her I hope it’s not soon.
Longing is immeasurable. Memories are a beautiful thing. God made me to remember us in the kitchen and her famous pound cake.
And he led me to consider the comfort of having enough.
Not too much.
He led me as if my mama and He had been in intimate conversation and they both decided.
Look now, she’s about to give in. She’s about to be pitiful again. She’s about to let doubt ruin the batter, she’s leaning closely towards throwing out the good ingredients and deciding she might never bake a good cake, create a story or a painting again!
Can I tell you one thing for sure?
He knows. He knows our tendencies and stands close by saying, let’s don’t go that way again.
I’m rising now from my morning spot on a day I am calling “sick” and I will get busy with the good things God has started in me and then I’ll go and try my best to get the ingredients for my mama’s unwritten recipe.
I have a cake to bake!
Thank you Jesus and mama, for teaching me.
Continue and believe.
I’m afraid I never follow the five minute rule. Still, I appreciate the prompt, so I’m linking up with others prompted by the word “measure”.
I have an unfulfilled desire to be a swimmer, strong and freeing I long to be the one swimming laps at end of the day in our pool.
I long to be a singer too, one of those people with no concern over those around me or before me, just belting out a lyric from the bottom of my belly and resting my hand at my heart as I am fulfilled in the joy from within.
I’ve heard both are possible, with training and time and I tell myself it’s surely a crazy desire, Lisa Anne.
Clearly, you have more than enough on your plate! I’ll stick with art and words for now, come June I may try swimming again. I will.
Two things are pending, waiting for me to take a grand plunge and with time and training get them just right this time.
I won’t grow if I don’t continue to try. This one thing I do know.
I am the most ill equipped marketer when it comes to marketing me.
I’m embarrassed to ask for help and I get all bent out of shape when I believe people can’t believe I cannot figure it out on my own.
This is my perception.
When it comes to confidence in myself in this area I have none.
But, I am committed to trying.
I will update my blog today or tomorrow, keep my name on the front end, the uncomfortable place that says find her, read her words, and I’m adding a Sunday evening newsletter to all who want to hear my thoughts at end of the day, the end of a week. I know what I want to call it and I feel God leading me to what he wants me to say.
I may change my confidence, it may not say “quiet” or “confidence” at all.
I just need to continue. It may say continue.
I’ve deleted my art page. It had only three followers 😊 and I’ll incorporate hopefully a more professional look with links to connect interested buyers.
Yes, today I will begin, hopefully be complete by tomorrow.
I get confused over confidence the more I travel this writing and painting road. I make it bigger than it is, the challenge of trying and then following where God wants it to go.
Look it up, the dictionary says confidence depends on ourselves.
That can’t be so.
If it’s all me it becomes either reward or rejection and it goes back to being all about me, chubby little brown haired girl longing to be noticed.
I love the words to this song that keeps circling back to find me: