Thursday, October 4, 2012

i moved! 

I'm not lost.. you are :) .. but that can change if you follow the link above!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


I have become aware of  the horizon.

It truly is always there, but when the corn and beans grow up and become what they are intended to be, a closeness draws in. A crowding of the area you see. Limited potential and barriers to what you might become. Green and growth is a great thing, but it does hide the horizon.

When the combines are loosed from their summer slumber and ever so steadily chip away at that barrier.. what you are left with is a blank horizon. A breathing of space where one can run and jump and really see the future. A empty space where nothing is hidden and all seems free.  Yes, when the fields are all harvested there is nothing but space to dream and plan out the next growing season.

I'm not sure I have even ever thought of it being death, but I suppose that is what harvest is. Taking the fruit out and discarding the rest. In this way death is beautiful.

I long for a horizon so vast in my soul that God looks at it and says to me.

"You ran with all you had, and I am proud."

  A horizon that doesn't hold me back, and I'm free to make mistakes and plant new seeds and ideas, and where the death of me daily is a good thing. One simply can't live in growth forever, it's a season.  An ebb and flow of learning and growing.

Someday a combine will come and gather your fruit and you can begin again.... and when that day comes... it will be a great thing to see your horizon and be free to see the potential death brings.

Monday, October 1, 2012

healing: its His desire.

Yesterday I taught Promiseland, our churches early ed program. 

That's a huge sentence if you really know the whole story, and if you don't read the past posts from about 4 years ago...long story way short.. I was fired from the church I attend, but God never said "leave the church." so our family stayed.. and I spent the last 5 years walking through the healing it takes when wounded by a church. Hurt so deep that it shook my heart to the core and healing so pure that I wouldn't have changed the whole experience for anything. 

This blog was birthed out of questions my heart had through that whole season. A season that I think was laid to rest with the living out of the first sentence. A season that defines who I am today more than any other. Yes, it was hard. Harder and freakier than anything I have ever walked through, but God was and is still here. Just like he was yesterday when I was teaching the littles in Promiseland. 

When I was teaching in the past, my "boss" would pop in the room with a clipboard and write down things I said and things I did. He was an expert trainer, and he intended to train me in all ways of public presentations. He sandwiched the bad things in the middle of the good things when we'd meet to "debrief," but I doubted my up front abilities more than ever. No doubt I needed to change a few of my up front tendencies so he was right in pointing them out, but I grew to fear teaching anything, especially bible stories, when he entered into the room. I was a wreak. 

Fast forward 5 years and I was teaching the story of Abraham to about 30 little people and a handful of adults. When out of the corner of my eye a man enters the room. This could have been any man, and I assure you it wasn't his fault that my mind when back to that clipboard... he wasn't even carrying one! He was a pastor, new to our church, the most kindhearted individual I have ever met. I adore him and he plays a huge role in our family. He is a man of God and I am in no way even hinting that he even knew what him being in that room even meant. He was innocent. In fact, I even talked to him about how I felt.. and we laughed. 

Healing happened yesterday and I'm so grateful to a God that walks me ever so gently into wounds that  I never even knew needed healing. He is so compassionate and understanding. So full of hope. 

The truth is that God has given me an ability to teach little people about God in a fun and creative way. It's just that simple, and through well meaning church people that ability was wounded. Are my eyes different then they were 5 years ago? You bet. Is God the God of restoration? Absolutely. 

I know that if you put yourself out there, take a chance on God.. He will blow your socks off with the love that only He gives, and that love gently leads you through any wounds you have from churches.  He makes all things new, so keep walking. You  can do it.. even if you don't think you can. 

"May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God 
and to the steadfastness of Christ."
 2 Thessalonians 3:5 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

the end is the beginning.

Life without community is just plain stale. I am super duper hip hoppity glad that summer is over and life can resume on a weekly basis with these folks. Folks who spur me on into a deeper more satisfying life with my Creator. Life really does need safe places where people can share themselves- faults included- and be accepted. Life really does need a place where the people celebrate obeying Gods' words. These folks fill a need that was put on all our hearts as followers of Christ.. the need for freedom. Free to be and become what God has always dreamt we could be. I love these people.

The summer has ended, and it's time to begin anew! YEAH!!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

lovin hotdogs.

I'm the owner of a Hot Dog ring.

Those are eight words that I never would have even dreamt would have spewed out of my keyboard. Who wears these things? Or who even MAKES things like this in hopes they will sell?? Like who lays in bed thinking.. "Today I'm going to make a hot dog ring." Who DOES THAT???

It was the first day of summer.. I was gulping down my very first hotdog of the season.. and I rather quickly fired off a Facebook status that read.. " I think I'm going to count how many hog dogs I eat all summer." 

And I did just that. 

I couldn't go almost anywhere without someone asking.."How many are you up to now, Kelly?" I know how a dozen or so of you love to eat your hot dogs, and I know who loves them and who tolerates them. I know more about how the human loves or hates hotdogs then I care to admit. 

School started today, so I'm done counting. All summer I have eaten 12 hot dogs... and I dislike hot dogs very much.  

But I have a hot dog ring. 

A reward perhaps? A God given gift from a lovely friend who saw it on etsy and knew I needed it. Proof that maybe something you hate or tolerate can indeed have love hidden in it if you are given the chance to see it? 

Love is shown in many ways, even hotdog rings.  

Joanna. I love you too. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

His story.

Gasp! Two posts in one week! EEK! ok calm down... you needn't fuss over this. It really is just a case of "oh my goodness, I'd better write that down, before I forget" kinda of deal. Only this deal is God's deal.. and I thought maybe it would encourage your soul. So without further ado.. Here's His story...

About 2-3 weeks ago a friend of a friend asked me to make a canvas she had fallen in love with. The original one was sold, which meant that I had to make another one, sorda like it. In that session in the studio I decided to make a few smaller canvases as well. Turns out, she ended up not wanting the one one I did for her, but two of the little ones. In her words, "I have no idea why, but I needed them both."

This friend's town was then turned upside down by an accident in which two littles died. Those littles were Cassidy Stehn, 9, of Northwood and Hana Riedinger, 12, of Kensett. Two little girls whom are missed very much. I knew neither of them, but when someone loses a little.. for some reason my heart bleeds with questions and how comes?  

A few days after the crash, I received this e-mail.

 I just have to tell you this know when I

 was looking at your "lovelies" and the blonde girl I

 bought just seriously called to me - I just KNEW I

 needed her......Now I know why - I am going to give 

that to the Stehn Family who lost their little girl

 Cassidy in that tragic accident - this is for them - and 

just makes me cry thinking that God knew that I

needed that particular one...........

He works in mysterious and wonderful ways  

Here's the deal. If I had my perfect world my canvases would never touch the walls of a mother who has lost a child, at any age, but since they do. I am grateful for the truth that they can see on a daily basis. God is still good, even in the horrible loss of a little. 

There was another little in the van that day of the accident. Her name is Destiny. She is still recovering in the hospital. Already there are many stories of tiny miracles surrounding her recovery, and for that I praise God. It was this past Thursday that I received a call from a dear friend of Destiny. She wanted a canvas to give to this little girl who is struggling and will no doubt struggle in the days to come when she realizes that two of her friends won't be in school when it starts in the fall. Destiny's reality is and will be hard.  When the words came... they felt strange and good at the same time. 

He will protect, guide and love you always. 
When you change. He will be the same...unchanging in His adoration of you. 

God speed Destiny. 
Many are praying for your full recovery. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pursue Jesus.

This is what my front yard looks like. 

The worst drought in a decade some say. 

When crops struggle to get new moisture, they curls their tops and reach for the sky. Almost as if they are praying with all their might to have relief from the heat. 

It was on my walk 
(I have hurt my back making running not an option) 
where I noticed this image. 


A football field readied for the game.

But to get to the field from where I stood I needed to scale two fences, a track, and really dry grass.

It was almost as if the playing field was prepped and protected for future use...and my soul agreed. 

In my area there is a drought going on. This will inevitably lead to higher prices for food, and a whole host of other things we need for our daily living.. causing stress and anxiety. 

To be ready and prepared for the game during this drought.. you can be watered with the Water that will never run low. 
He will take care of those whom He calls His...He promises.

 Despite the drought.. pursue Jesus.

Saturday, June 30, 2012


There is just so much I want to write to you today. So many struggles and personal hang ups and issues that I needed to overcome to get to this point. Voices in my head that whisper lies. "You are not good enough, you have too many past sins to be used, you Kelly are just a housewife from Iowa." Voices I have had to stomp on daily until they just give up.. and Satan tries another tactic. Distraction is his current favorite.. always something when your goal is to pour life into thirsty souls with Words and images... a battle I am called to fight.

I just sold my 100th canvas, and I'm in awe... no I'm in tears. I want to run quick to heaven hug Jesus and blow God a kiss then come back to my studio to create some more.

The battle of your mind is important. It's what you think about, what you gaze on that ultimately dictates who you are and who you are becoming. It's this battle for your thoughts that God has called me to fight. A war against the enemy for your soul. A war that you fight daily, and I pray for you. I pray that you stand strong and gaze on Truth. This is why I must create. This battle, this war is FAR to important to just sit and hope. We must actively train our thoughts to think on Him. He who saves.

Satan is right,  I can do nothing on my own. Neither can you.

God is full of so much grace and mercy for us. Grace that I enter into every time I pick up a brush. It's because of HIM that 100 canvases sold... He really does give good gifts.... to us all.

If you have purchased a canvas. Thank you. If you have shared my page. Thank you. If you have given me the gift of words. Thank you. If you have given time in prayer. Thank you. If you gave me a huge box of canvases.. or just one.... Thank you. There is nothing on this earth that I'd rather be doing, and it's because of you that I get to.

Is this gig forever? who knows.. but I sure hope it's not over yet....

Monday, June 25, 2012

to save a life.

How he loves that coat of many colors 
It was red, yellow, green, brownscarlet, black, ocher, 

peach, ruby, olive, violet, fawn, lilac, gold, chocolate, 
mauve, cream and crimson and silver and rose 
And azure and lemon and russet and grey
And purple and white and pink and orange and blue.

His name was Joseph, and I'm going to assume you know the whole story, but here's a VERY brief cliff note version... He was the youngest, most favored.. got a coat from dad. Brothers hated him.. put him in a well. Sold him. Told Dad he was dead. 

But God had other plans and orchestrated a whole bunch of events that stripped Joseph of all his dignity, and pride. 

Then a few years later those same brothers were starving and headed to the "white house" for some help feeding their families back home. They didn't know it, but Joseph had been called by God to be His very hands and feet... he had been chosen to be in a position of leadership. Saved in order to love on the lost and needy. Joseph was able to help his brothers.  Dad was even elated to find out that he his beloved son was alive! 

Well, when Dad died. Those brothers were very afraid that Joseph was going to do something horrible and awful to them in retribution... I think you'd call it fear. So, after all the funeral hoopla they sent word to Joseph and asked for forgiveness and this is what Joseph said.. 

 “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.  So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them. Genesis 50:19-21

Why am I telling you this lil story that is of course true? 

Because of the words.. " you intended harm for me, but God..." 

When God grabs a hold of your life. You can't help but change.. and if your called.. you get to help others have chances they wouldn't normally have. God allowed bad to happen to you to shape you into what He needs you to be for those around you. That in itself is mind blowin!  Embrace the bad....recognize the good.... then save lives. It's that simple. It's all part of the beauty of how God works. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

so i dance.

This canvas makes me smile. It's still on my wall, I am almost certain that the ones that don't sell right away are for my walk, and until the truth is nailed in my soul the canvas won't sell. 
So, this one still hangs above my rocking chair where I read and study. 
A constant reminder that I can do nothing but dance, God's love does the rest. 

So, I dance... a wedding in a winery. 
The day went perfectly. The bride was lovely and made sure the details were just as stunning as her dress. Oh the dress.... being a second (sometimes third) shooter photographer I walk in not knowing a soul. I am privy to real emotion in strangers. When this bride put her dress on.... we cried together. She was high class inside and out. A delightful day.

.....and I dance....

... in the studio. 
A commission from a very young mom of 5 babies. A present for her husband on Father's Day. A constant reminder to be hung for all to see that life is to be intentional in their family. Inspired by her faith I feel renewed energy to be close to the Father. Strangers turned friends over the internet. I'm asking God to put our mansions on the same side of town in Gloryland, and I keep dancing... the tune of the Spirit.  
Which rises above all of the other melodies in my world, unless it doesn't... 
and that's where I am today. Frustrated with myself for once again forgetting or pushing away my first love amidst the chaos of summer. Echos of my brothers words again and again.. grace Kelly, give yourself grace.

... and I  stop for a bit, spin around, pick up the Word... and dance again.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

and the band played on.

I was reminded yesterday that I do indeed have a blog. I'll forego the usual clicks of the keys that form excuses, and just pretend that we never even had a bit of a break, deal?  

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

what if evil didn't win this time?

I start to wash dishes. The water doesn't run right. The Lead Singer frantically searches for the cause. It's just the kitchen faucet, it's running slow and as always you have to go turn on the bathtub to get the hot water heater started so the water is hot. None of this works and my hope of getting the dishes done dwindles. Water issues, simple yet so frustrating when you have had the privilege of having hot running water on demand your whole life. I take the Changers to school, come home and wallow in self pity. Water, is that too hard for you God? If you loved me water wouldn't be an issue. right? In my heart I know I'm just having a pity party, but gosh darn it.. everyone has water. I should too.

My phone chirps alerting me of an email. I log on and find myself engrossed in a video that should make your blood boil. I encourage you to watch it. It's only a few minutes long.

Monday, April 16, 2012

visual love.

God just does stuff cuz He loves us. He doesn't have to have any other reason. 
(Even better when visuals are involved for this gal.)
The ultimate love without fear. 

 He showed me His love.. THREE times in one night!! 
I wonder how many other less obvious ones I miss? prolly lots...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

i miss her already.

We sat there in Taco Johns, it prolly was her favorite place. She always ate healthy. Carefully attending to the temple God gave her one way or another. She was in fact, the most heath conscience person I knew. She was my friend. We sat there over our tacos crying over life, decisions made, hope found and of course the ever illusive parenting skills we lacked. She was a confidant.

We decided that the summer months were ours to serve in the nursery at church. We holed up with numerous toddlers in a teachers lounge turned baby place each  and every Sunday that summer. It was much easier to just count on ourselves than have to rely on folks to be there. We were young and six of the babies in there were ours anyways. She never wanted to burden anyone, ever.

When she was leading the K/1 sunday school class, my oldest world changer was included in her class. It was she who he wanted to pray to accept Jesus with. She was always always safe.

Today is her funeral and I know life will go on, but death does certainly change it. She is a rock to her young kids and a beautiful wife to her man. She will always be missed.

But I call to God, and the Lord will save me. 
Every morning and at noon I utter my complaint
 and he hears my voice. 
He redeems my soul in safety from the battle that I wage.
 Psalm 55:16-18 

Saturday, April 7, 2012

to endure the wait.

There is something uncomfortable about waiting. The place in between. The moments or lifetimes when you beg and plead for relief from whatever you are going through, and God seems to turn a deaf ear and carry on working in other people around you, and you sit there hearing nothing.  Planning and scheming your own way out of whatever it is your knee deep in. Waiting is hard, dare I say Americans stink at it?

Of course Satan doesn't want you to wait. If you wait well, you might hear God's words in your heart so deep that would never let them go. Then, your life is changed- into something that Satan has no use for. Ahhhh.. that's the master scheme. You can not thrive on microwave waiting.

You must have slow cooker faith. When you cook with a slow cooker you put all the ingredients in first. Then you enjoy life with the aroma of whats cooking. With the exception of the good things that are cooking. The aroma helps you wait well. It's the waiting that develops your senses to the Spirit. The sweet smell of God's work and giving Him glory.

When Jesus proclaim "It is finished" while He was still hanging on the cross, God could have conquered death right then and there, but God chose to have Jesus raised on the third day. On day two the believers had no choice but to morn and feel hopeless. They just invested three years of their lives into a man who just died a horrible death.  Rejection, abandonment, unworthiness, they felt it all I'm almost positive.  So many times in the Word we see situations that God could have chose to have come in and save the day. But He loved us enough to wait.

Waiting. It's another form of love. A form of love that develops deeper intimacy and joy with the God who created you. You may have to force yourself to wait. You would not be alone in that battle, but if you are screaming and kicking while waiting, looking and grasping for any sign that the waiting is over, you may be missing the point.  Go about your day.  Redirect your thoughts on the goodness and love of God as needed and be still. God will astound you. God will tell your soul to move and act. God will whisper gentle words of love to you.. and you will learn to love to wait. Because it's in the waiting that God is the nearest to you. God wants to save the day for you, but he also wants the glory. He's like that. Jealous of your affection. He wants you to love Him with all of you, and that may take years, or maybe just days.. but know He will save you from whatever you find your self journeying through.  He promises.

"For you have need of endurance, 
so that when you have done the will of God 
you may receive what is promised."
Hebrews 10:36

Friday, April 6, 2012

we all do it.

Every Good Friday when I was growing up.  Our family would head over across field to attend the service at a little Lutheran church.  A service where the altar was ceremoniously stripped of it's greatness and draped in a black cloth. A tomb of hopelessness. A service where at the end the normal chatter and banter between housewives and farmers was silenced. Taken over by the immense weight of what our sin did to a man who was just hung on a cross. 

I do not attend a Lutheran church now, haven't for many years, but every Good Friday I would just once like to take my tribe to a service where the focus is a feeling of hopelessness. A place where you are forced to sit and wait for three days for answers that your heart seeks. A service where the main point is to point out that your sin is real, and it hurts people. A service where the recognition of your sin is placed front and center on a cross in front of you. A service where you are forced to keep an uncomfortable silence at the end. 

Sin stinks and is wreaking havoc on this world. It is supposed to. That's what sin does, destroys. Of course it's awkward to talk about. There isn't one person on this planet who takes great joy in admitting they are full of sin, but we do ourselves a great disservice when we hide the sin that is in us all. Satan, the Father of Lies, takes what is hidden and uses it against us. Our hearts put up walls and force people out. We build our own kingdoms so we feel like we save ourselves. 

Sin is in us all. All. Should we celebrate it? No. 
Should we set aside a couple of days to deal with it?  Jesus did. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

and this is why.

Enter a list.   I know a blogger no-no.. but deal.  Here are the reasons I hate running.

  1. I'm slow
  2. I'm very slow
  3. The weather isn't always cooperative.
  4. It takes time out of my creative days.
  5. It's boring.
  6. My body screams at me "this is dumb" in the process. 
  7. Did I mention that I am slow? 
There. Seeing that list, I'm betting your wondering why I DO run.   

  1. I run because God says to take care of his temple, and I am that temple. 
  2. I run because if I had to choose between the three things (details, math and running) I am most horrible at.. to get better.. at I pick running. 
  3. I run because growing in an area isn't supposed to be fun all the time. It's work.. and boy is running work for my brain and body. 
  4. I run because I like to train my brain to rely on the truth. Truth is that running is good for you, cheap and exciting.. honestly most days my mantra is .. one more step.. one more step. 
  5. I run because there may be an emergency some day where I am required to run for a great distance to seek help or shelter.
  6. I run because if I run for 30+ minutes. I can be done with my workout for the day. 
  7. I run because just once I want to finish a 1/2 marathon to say I did it. 
  8. I run because it requires no details or math to accomplish. 
  9. I run because I have no desire to somedays, but I know if I do lace up my shoes and get out the door in whatever weather there is.  My heart will thank me and my soul will be refreshed, and God will be pleased, and that makes me happy. 
Basically it's a self discipline thing... and that's why I run.. and if you made it through this horrible post about a subject you could really care less about.. your reward is that you can see what the Lead Singer made for me.. isn't he just grand?? It's my new logo.. for things yet to be created! YEAH!!! 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

courage covered canvas.

I know Amanda through college. We reconnected through the lovely vehicle of Facebook. She wrote the following letter to me there. 

Hi Kelly,
I really want one of your paintings for my friend Traci. I'm wondering if I can commission one? I've posted a lot about Traci's family recently. Her husband Ben was killed in Afghanistan lastmonth.Ben's brother Jeremy, one of my best friends, was killed 2 years ago in Afghanistan. I wouldn't have any idea for a theme, maybe you could pray about it? See what inspires you? I can tell you that one of her mantras recently is that you don't know how strong you are until you have no choice but to be strong. She really found God because of Ben and he's been such a spiritual influence for her. They were so in love with each other and an amazing couple. I'm not sure what else to tell you. All I know is that your paintings are so inspiring and I was hoping for something that would remind Traci of all the good things and to give her courage. Let me know what you think. Thanks!


I have known so many military friends in my life. However, I have never ever experienced the pain of losing one of those friends in the line of duty. Unthinkable actually, to have to walk that path. I could not go there emotionally in order to capture the feeling of loss and grief that needed to be in this canvas. I had to rely on the Spirit to take me there. 

So much of this process is just weird to type out for you. Like how when I read the letter from Amanda I "saw" boots and sandals almost immediately. I happened to have visited the library a few days before Amanda wrote me, even though I had taken to not reading fiction books for some time. I picked up a copy of a book about a military family. This book was very well written and led me on a journey of my heart that had me weeping with every turn of the page.  Is it possible that God allowed me to read this particular book for Traci? I'll let you decide.  Our church is going through the book of 1 John and so daily I was already studying about how God's love looks in a daily walk. As you can see one thing stacked up on another and out came a canvas designed by God, using my hands to remind Traci that she can follow Ben's example of sacrificial giving with courage and ultimately following Jesus's example of having no fear in love. 

Thank you Amanda.  You are a good friend and a brave solider yourself. I pray you are as blessed with this gift to Traci as I was... and thank you for your service to our country  as well. Our military families need our constant prayer. They sacrifice much for us.  

To God be the glory. 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Hunger Games.

South Dakota, not my most favorite state in the country to drive through. Something about the high winds, lack of anything remotely interesting to see on the interstate, and the almost 110 degree heat just doesn't bode well with my personality. However, living in the next door state makes it inevitable that we drive through it to get to the mountains. It was on the long and tediously boring ride through this particular state that I introduced my family to the Hunger Games on audiobook.

After you read this book, you simply must talk about it. It creates conflict in your heart, but especially the language you choose to use. For example,  How can someone who loves life, like myself,  even recommend this book to a casual reader with the words, "it's a story about kids forced to kill other kids?" We had a lively discussion about the characters and events of the book while crossing that blessed state. I wouldn't have traded that experience for anything.

Fast forward a while, and you find my family sitting in a theater at midnight anxiously awaiting the first installment of the Hunger Games loaded up on popcorn and pop. To say I was tense as a mom watching this book come alive on the screen with my babies was correct. In the book there are a few scenes played out in words that I would never want to "experience" in visual form, let along have my babies see it.

After sitting for the 2 hours and 22 minutes experiencing the book made movie. I came to this conclusion.

The story isn't about death. It is about life. 

As Christians, we are in the middle of Lent. A season of preparation for the upcoming holiday Easter. A day when we celebrate with much gusto as possible the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus. A man who died to save us all from our sin, so that we could have eternal life. Jesus was born into a system required him to defeat evil. He had to die, so that we can live. He was the ultimate sacrifice. If you have seen the movie Passion of the Christ, you know he died a horrible and unimaginably painful death.

Katniss was born into a system that she didn't agree with, and she got the chance to conquer the evil in order for others to have a better life. In this process, others had to die. Katniss is a fictitious character whose character doesn't even resemble Jesus one bit. Except that Katniss has to defeat evil for the one thing that is worth it all in the end.

Like life.

The movie, and book for that matter, do an excellent job at promoting life in the midst of evil. It may not look like it on the outside as a package, but the message is there that every life is beautiful. Go watch the movie, read the book, or even listen to it as a family on your next boring ride across South Dakota.. you will find it.  Oh and if you have never read the Bible either, go pick that up too. There is  whole bunch of good and true stories in that book to keep you busy until the next installment of the games comes out in theaters.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

the land of I Am.

It has been one of those weeks, when I force myself to remain quiet and really try to understand my motives in my heart. That is probably the hardest thing. Yes, I love to create. Yes, I love to receive compliments. Yes, I like to help my family and Make Way Partners out financially. Yes, I love to play with words and fonts. Yet, when it comes down too it. The condition of my heart is what matters most. 

When I finally let the cat out of the bag on the events of the last week I want it to be God glorifying and pleasing to Him. However, in order to do that, it seems I need to tell you that the struggle against flesh is so so so hard, because I am human, and I want credit. I want to look good in your eyes, I want you to like me, like my art. I want you to see who I am. 
There, did you see it? 

 I want you to see who I am.

The goal and plans unearthed gently by way of words on a screen. I want you to see who I am. Eight words that, if I am honest, started my journey in blogland. I wanted people to know me, ugh.. those earlier posts drive me crazy. O how I want to delete them and just forget they didn't happen, but I can't. They are me. Full of me. 

Minute by minute.
every second my soul begs me to go back to wanting you to see me. 
I fight it.. with every thought. 

Change happens slowly. What starts in your head, moves to your heart and you wake up one day and realize you have changed. Your close friends confirm your hard work of dying to self  and you start to live life in silence. Letting God take the glory. He lets you live in that world until you find your footings on His rocks and you feel Him with every thought and move. 

Without warning, or maybe there was? He lets go of your hands and you are forced to take steps in a land you haven't ever been.  The land of I Am.  A land where He is enough, He is your all in all, He satisfies every need. He loves you unconditionally. He whispers to your soul.. " you can do this, but not alone." You need Him like your very breath, because the steps you are taking are very very scary. Will He catch me if I fall? Will He be there? Would He approve of this? and my heart is calling out to Him.. I want people to see You.  

Show them You. 

  • This week Kelly Gau Studio was legally born with the help of  Dear Brother. 
  • The Lead Singer made me an amaxing logo. 
  • A brother, who speaks another language, I'm sure in his sleep, is helping me set up a website.
  • Dear Sister gave me canvas in my waiting for the UPS guy to show up.. and on those I painted what I am considering my most favorite of all and I can't wait to show you. 
  • None of this would be even happening if my bestest friend in the whole world hadn't sent me that box of canvases a few months back.
  • And then theres the countless comments and affirmations I receive from you. 

In my hearts effort to make sure you see God in everything I do.  I can only tell you that I am constantly aware of this and with everything in my being... but I will mess up. I will fail. I have before, and I will again.. However, I know there is grace. A grace that I can't live without..cuz that's how things roll in the land of I Am... and I live there now. 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

painting light.

"The beauty of the light is
 how it changes the things it touches." 

The above was texted to me a few weeks back. Tangible words to questions my heart was asking.  I tried. Oh how I tried to paint light. After several attempts, I put the thought out of my brain, and moved on. Painting light was just too hard. Too illusive. Way beyond my grasp. A skill I needed years not moments to attain. So I moved on. 

A new box of canvas, and an invitation to invest some more funds from a particular painting back into supplies.. and I have new tools to work with. I have put the thought of light out of my being, and instead what comes out of my hands and prayers is a picture that immediately I know who needs to own it. 

It only has two words, but those words I believe are the most important words this person needs to hear. The ones God himself chose for him. Oh that people would know that it is Him who does this stuff and not me. I realized this was a holy moment between him and his Creator.. so I did a drive by giving. 

Later, he sent me a message in the world of facebook.

"thank you for the beautiful landscape print
 and the inspirational saying on it , see you can paint light."

In tears, I realize again that when you give out of your heart. You get back ten times more than you ever could imagine. Simple words that illuminate my spirit and convince me to paint light again and again for if the beauty of light is how it changes the things it touches... there's a whole lot of people that need the light Jesus and I can paint together. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

the world inside.

I was just filling in. I wasn't really supposed to be there. The prayer room is normally manned by more experienced prayers, more wisdom. It was me. Alone. I was the token prayer for the morning, and I just figured people would just see me and figure that I was just too young to be in there.. so they wouldn't come. 

He pops in.. obviously in a hurry.  I know his position, but I don't know him personally yet.

"Are you praying today?"


"Can you pray for me?"

"Of course." 

I mumble a fast prayer and this man is on his way as quickly as he came. 

I spent the rest of the hour  beating myself up.  

Lies flooded through my brain in rapid succession, and I am afraid I chose to believe them. A battle any warrior should have fought. I chose to sit in self pity and my own not good enoughs.

Stepping out of the prayer room, physically ready to attend worship, I run into my brother and I confess to him the events of the last hour. 

He smiles and simply says, "That would have never happened before. Look at how far you have come." 

Grace. My brother gives me grace over and over. He knows my journey to the core, and he speaks truth into the lies that coat my soul.  I tear up and slap him on the arm, irritated he's always right. 

God is good to show me what I need, yesterday in that prayer room. He showed me that I am worthy to pray for a fellow journeyer, a sinner just like me. No, he wasn't on a pedestal, never was. He was in fact, the perfect person to remind me that being a warrior means you need to always be ready to fight. Even if that fight is against the world inside myself. 

" Do not love the world or the things in the world.  
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him." 
1 John 2:15

Thursday, February 16, 2012

painting barefoot.

It is a simple post. Please share your prayer requests with me. I'll pray for you today. Today also happened to be the day I chose to begin a 22x28 canvas painting. Both turned out to be bigger than I wanted, but exactly the same size I needed.

The post is still up. The inbox messages are still coming in. I'm still praying. Walking around and claiming ground for Jesus, and I realize that everywhere I am becomes holy ground.  Not a new and original thought, but if I am to ask the Creator and Author of life to keep back evil... I need to be barefoot, because this ground I stand on is His, and it's holy like Him.

I paint black and white. I feel black and white. I can't help it. There is God who is white, and Satan who is black and they mix, but the white.. it wins. Always wins, even when the black seems to be evident everywhere.  I come out with a canvas that is mostly white. I step away away... it needs color.

Red. Blue. Green.  They are my prayers and they cover the canvas easily. Changing the view I see. Changing the outcome. I stand on holy ground with my colors.. and although my painting changes.. I change with each sentence uttered. Each stroke. Each tear. My heart beats faster and faster and I become calm in His hands. He forms my thoughts and I pray and color, color and pray.

"O you who hears prayer, to you shall all flesh come." 
Psalm 65:2  

It seems so simple. So controversial. Can I with my palette really ask God to intervene on matters that I know He allowed to happen in the first place? What difference can my prayers really make? I feel so small in the midst of this theology and yet, I'm still barefoot. Holy Ground. 

In my limited knowledge of prayer.  I know it works, but I can't tell you how. It's a journey I'm still on. I know that God is a God who loves me. And if you love someone, the first thing you want to do it spend time with them. Prayer is that vehicle for me.. God changes me when I cry out to Him. God paints a different picture in my mind when I'm close to Him. I choose to stand on holy ground barefoot because I'm not content with a black and white life. I need a little color, and I know that pleases my God. 

"the meadows clothe themselves with flocks, the valleys deck themselves with grian. they shout  and sing together for joy." 
Psalm 65:13