Category Archives: Inspirational

Rest

I tried to get some hand lettering practice in this week! I know so many talented designers who do great hand lettering, and seeing what they do is so inspiring! I thought I’d start practicing by doing a word every week.

This past week has been super busy, so I’m thankful to have a chance to rest this weekend! Hope you all are having a relaxing and restful Sunday. After a busy week, we all need a day of rest, don’t we?

 On the seventh day God had finished His work of creation, so He rested from all His work. GENESIS 2:2 NLT

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Holding Tight to the Permanent One

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“How quickly things change. Life is a given until it isn’t,” writes Amanda as she shares about her father’s battle with cancer.

“For a long time, nothing was certain except that life was uncertain,” Raechel adds, as she describes the brokenness in her childhood home.

Two women, two stories–different, yet not so different from yours or mine. In their new book She Reads Truth: Holding Tight to Permanent in a World That’s Passing Away, authors Raechel Myers and Amanda Bible Williams share experiences in their lives that we all can identify with. As I was reading through my review copy, I realized that even though our stories are different, they’re similar in many ways. Loss, illness, financial setbacks, family relationships–we all can relate to the pain, the stress, the worry, and the uncertainty of life’s ups and downs. But the stories don’t end there. Raechel and Amanda write about how faithful God has been in every situation. And how they found comfort in the Truth of His Word and strength in His promises.

14322622_732489793750_5655470604830158633_nWe live in a world that is temporary and fleeting, but  the authors of She Reads Truth emphasize that in this world of uncertainty, God is permanent, unchanging, and ever-faithful. He is our Rock–the One we can always hold on to, the One who is always holding us. And He specializes in redemption. He redeems our stories in beautiful, unexpected, unpredictable ways.

“Sometimes, by God’s sweet grace, the hard stuff is also the most worth–it stuff.” says Raechel. “Because of God’s proven faithfulness to us, His people, we can put our hands squarely on each other’s shoulders, look one another in the eye, and remind each other that God is at work. Without a doubt. Redemption is always coming.”

In Amanda’s words, “He is the God who penned redemption’s story, from before the beginning of time all the way to the fingertips of eternity’s outstretched hand. He is the God who is not bound by my efforts or held back by my doubt. He is the God who is Love infinite, Love perfected, Love inextinguishable.”

I found this book so encouraging because it points to our everlasting God and His unchanging promises. He is the Permanent One–the Alpha and Omega who is, who was, and who is to come. He has always been there for us and always will be. He takes the brokenness of our lives and creates something beautiful from it. He will never stop loving us and loves us more than we will ever be able to comprehend.

He holds us close by the Truth of His Word. Let’s always hold tight to Him!

Authors Raechel Meyers and Amanda Bible Williams also have an online community called She Reads Truth–to learn more about it, visit SheReadsTruth.com.

Linked to Inspire Me Monday.

Focusing on Truth

When I saw this quote from a new book coming out soon (see shereadstruthbook.com), the words truth and eternal stood out to me.

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Truth and eternal. These two words helped me get through a very difficult time I experienced earlier this summer. A few posts ago, I shared with you that my mom had died. Losing someone close to you totally changes your world. There’s an emptiness you feel when they’re gone. A friend told me, “It’s never easy and we are never ready.”

The day after mom died, I was feeling this emptiness. And cutting through all the swirling emotions in my mind, the Lord spoke, telling me to focus on the truth of the situation. “Focus on what is true,” He said softly. “The truth Is your mother is alive and in heaven.” It was a gentle reminder of what I already knew to be true–a reminder of what John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Although I miss mom, I know our separation is temporaryand I’m happy for her, knowing she is very much alive in her eternal heavenly home.

Knowing and focusing on Truth makes all the difference.

 

Catching Up

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Image from Pinterest

It’s the middle of summer already. Summer is one of my favorite seasons. I love the warm, even hot, weather and the long days. I’m usually outside quite a bit during the summer, enjoying the sunshine. This summer has been a little different, though. My last post was in early June, and I wanted to catch you up on why I haven’t posted in awhile.

During the middle of June, I came down with what I thought was the flu–I had a cold and fever, and normally, since I’m pretty healthy, I get over something like that fairly quickly if I get lots of rest. Well, this fever and cold went on for a week and I was feeling worse, so I went to the doctor. It turned out that I actually had pneumonia, and a pretty bad case of it, so I ended up in the hospital for 4 days. After getting out of the hospital, I was supposed to finish recovering at home, continuing to take antibiotics to clear up the pneumonia.

As I was at home recovering near the end of June, I found out that my dear mom, who lives quite a distance from me in another state, had been taken to the hospital. Initially, we thought she would be okay, but as the days and hours went on, her condition continued to worsen. And then, after just 4 days, she passed away. It was quite a shock, having happened so quickly. And such a sad time for those of us who loved her so much. She lived a good long life, but you’re never really ready to say goodbye to those you love and hold close.

The wonderful comfort I have though, is that this is not a final goodbye. I know mom is in heaven with Jesus and with other loved ones who have gone before her, and I know I will see her again. She is very much alive, enjoying all the beauty and wonder of heaven, and when I think of that, it makes me happy for her. It’s also a comfort knowing the Lord is near to me, covering me with His peace.

So I’m continuing to rest and take the last of my antibiotics. I don’t expect to post anything for at least another few weeks or maybe longer, until I get more of my energy back. Thanks so much for visiting my blog even though I haven’t been posting, and for the comments you have left–I appreciate all of you!

Clothe Yourselves with Kindness

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Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience….And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

COLOSSIANS 3:12, 14 NIV (New International Version)

Image from French Press Mornings

Finding Strength in Beauty

Lovely Pansies @ NancyC

51AAkaaspaL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_In some way I feel you here with me as I write, and I hope you feel that I’m there with you as you read, just your friend, across the table at a coffee shop, swapping stories and sharing hope,” Annie F. Downs writes at the beginning of her new book, Looking for Lovely. And as I read my review copy of the book, I really did feel that way–like I was having coffee with a good friend, sharing life…funny stories, disappointments, struggles…and most importantly, seeing together the hope beyond the difficult times.

Annie challenges us to look for the beauty around us in simple everyday moments, because it’s in those moments we see God in unique ways and we’re reminded of His love and care for us. And we draw strength from that–strength and encouragement to keep us going on our journey. Annie explains, “There is a correlation, I’m finding, between beauty and perseverance….Beauty is what makes it possible to keep going. And beauty is in the eye of the beholder, isn’t it? It’s not just in the things everyone sees, but it is what YOU see, what sticks out to you, the unique moments God gives you to collect up and hold and draw strength from.” 

Strength for the journey–we all need that! Annie, in her very personal, honest style, shares some of her own struggles–things that so many of us can relate to. And how finding loveliness in simple things like a sunrise or time spent with friends helps her see God’s love and His truths more clearly. God blesses our lives with loveliness in so many ways and it’s all around us, like little gifts He surprises us with every day.

I found that I had a new perspective after reading this book. I realized, as Annie points out, that an everyday occurrence like a sunrise is a beautiful reminder that there’s an end to darkness–it’s the beauty God created for us that helps get us through the hard times, keeps us from quitting, and gives us hope. Annie sums it up perfectly when she says, “I’m believing what I cannot see because of what I can see.” And after reading her book, I’m inspired to do the same.

Linked to Thursday Favorite ThingsCreate With Joy.

Trust the Path

Trust the Path @ NancyC

TRUST THE PATH, I heard God say. And I knew He didn’t just mean the “medium” difficulty one at Radnor Lake. He meant the questions in my heart, the things I wonder about, the worries that I am going to miss Him. I don’t have to know where things are going; I don’t have to know the destination; I just have to trust the path. –ANNIE F. DOWNS, Looking for Lovely

Looking for Lovely: Collecting the Moments that Matter  is a new book by Annie F. Downs, available for preorder at http://lookingforlovelybook.com.

Linked to Favorite Things Thursday.

Be Glad

Be truly glad

How encouraging is that? It brightened my day when I saw this over at a blog called French Press Mornings. I thought many of you would find it encouraging, too! You can download this message free there if you want to have a copy for yourself.

One of my designer friends told me about this site–I love the inspirational messages and the wonderful artwork there! This particular verse is from the New Living Translation of the Bible.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

The First Step @ NancyC

The First Step

The First Step @ NancyC

Faith is taking the first step, even when you don’t see the whole staircase.

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

I heard this quote over the radio one morning as my alarm went off. It’s something we all can relate to–being in a place where God is leading you to step out in faith. It may be a small step or a large, life-changing step. It may make perfect sense to you or it may not make any sense at all. But if God is leading you, it’s the right step to take.

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. HEBREWS 11:1 (TNIV)

For we live by faith, not by sight. II CORINTHIANS 5:7 (NIV)

Linked to Inspire Me Monday.

Surrender

41PB1RP7MAL._SX293_BO1,204,203,200_I marked a page in a book I had read several years ago and came across it the other day. A Prayer That Moves Heaven offers comfort and hope for those going through difficult times, and we all have gone through or are going through difficult, challenging times, right? As I reread the page I had marked, I thought there were some good nuggets of wisdom there, so I’m sharing a small section of it here. Hope you find it helpful…

God never intended for His kids to live under the pressure and fear and worry of life’s situations. Jesus tells us, “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33).

Surrendering is a good idea when you are facing dark and hopeless times. But always surrender to God, not to the circumstances.

There is a very big difference.

It’s one thing to sigh and shrug your shoulders and say, “Well, there’s nothing I can do,” and it’s another thing altogether to surrender your situation to the Lord who loves you. When you surrender your life and your circumstances to God, everything changes.

Yielding to His will and His plan is step number one. Once that is done, you can begin to ask Him some questions as you pray. Perhaps you might say something like this: “God, what do You see?” In other words, “How does this situation look from Your vantage point? Please help me to find Your perspective on my situation.”

The second question you might ask is, “God, what are You going to do?”

Third, you might ask, “God, what should I be doing?”

…In other words, “God, I don’t know what’s going on here. I know what I see, but I want to look to You. So I’m asking You for wisdom to let me see these things as they truly are.” 

–From A Prayer That Moves Heaven, pp. 50–52

When we surrender everything to God, it takes the heaviness and weight off our shoulders. I’m thankful He’s always there with open arms to lighten our load.

Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  MATTHEW 11:28 NIV

Linked to Inspire Me Monday.