Monday, 30 July 2018
The elements on this page reminded me of the circulatory system - blue for veins, red for arteries - so I added a heart as well. That set me thinking about the function of the circulatory system, which is circulation and exchange.
The same can be said of my morning quiet time. As I live through each day I pick up 'carbon dioxide' in the form of petty resentments, sharp words, unkindness, selfishness and the like, so I need to go back to the heart. If I let everything build up I suffocate in my own inadequacies and wretchedness. Spending time in God's word each day cleans me up so I'm fit to go out into the world again.
Friday, 27 July 2018
What do you wish you could be shielded from?
We all wish to be protected from certain things. The problem is, if we don't face difficulties, we don't grow. We can't just hide and hope that they will go away.
A Roman soldier's shield was large enough to crouch behind for protection, but it also had a boss to push forward with. There are times when we need to hunker down, but there comes a time to push on through. The shield is in front of you in both situations, but in one case it helps us move forward.
Wednesday, 25 July 2018
"Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can." Arthur Ashe
Start where you are - because you can't start where you aren't.
How many times do we say to ourselves, 'I'll do so-and-so once I've...' I'll start swimming once I've lost a stone and look better in a costume. I'll do some studying once the kids are in senior school. I'll have an exhibition once my art is better. It's easy to procrastinate. It's easy to never start.
Use what you have - because you can't use what you don't have.
If you have money that can help someone, use it. If you have talents, use them. If you have time, give it. Don't commit yourself to something that you can't give.
Do what you can - because you can do what you can't do.
I've spent the last few weeks making props and backdrop for the holiday club that is happening at church this week. When the children's worker asked me if I would help out I told her I was rubbish with children, but good at crafts. She said she was the opposite. I was able to donate my time and talents in a way that contributed to the holiday club and that I was comfortable with. I did what I could.
So, don't worry about where you are, just start.
Don't worry about what you have, just use it.
Don't worry about what you can't do, just do what you can do.
Monday, 23 July 2018
But how much attention do we give them?
This page has just a single cloud amongst a whole heap of colour and energy, but it's right there in the middle. It's the thing that the eye rests on. The sky can be as blue as blue, but if there's a single cloud, it grabs our attention, doesn't it?
And isn't that just what we do with the clouds of life? As soon as they appear, we start to worry that it's going to rain. We give them far more attention than they are worth, casting glances at them every few seconds and ignoring the sunlight all around them.
Clouds pass, but the sun is always there, even when we can't see it. Let's keep things in proportion.
Friday, 20 July 2018
All the elements on this page seemed to be urging me to move forward. The triangles are pointing that way. The fish are swimming that way.
Some days all you can do is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. It feels like plodding, but you still move forward whether you plod or run. Ground covered is ground covered, even if you have to crawl along.
Wednesday, 18 July 2018
I am at the age where I wake in the night wringing wet sometimes. Usually between 3 and 4 a.m. and getting back to sleep takes a while, if it happens at all.
Sometimes I'm too cold, just to shake it up a bit.
Sometimes I'm worried, but not very often.
What keeps you up at night?
Monday, 16 July 2018
Learn from others.
I was really inspired by some videos I watched on Youtube this week by Betty Krause. I love watching other people's processes. There's always something to learn. Those videos pushed me to pile on the layers and to pull out the palette knives my husband and daughter picked up for me. I had such fun! I'm still exploring, pushing my own style while using some new techniques.
You're never too old to learn!
Friday, 13 July 2018
It struck me, when standing back and looking at this page, that we tend to read from left to right - in the western world. With that in mind, if I read the red across the centre of this page as a journey, from left to right, then you have to travel the peaks and troughs and keep going forward to progress on the journey.
When we reach a peak, it is understandable that we might want to linger there. After all, when we're at the top of the mountain we feel great. Who wants to descend? But if you want to move forward, you have to go down the other side. Otherwise you're just stuck, resting on your laurels.
And when you're in a trough it can feel like you'll never get out. Sometimes you want to sit there in the dirt and feel sorry for yourself. (I'm talking about the everyday troughs, not depression, which is a whole different ball game.) However, if you keep going, even if you plateau for a long time, you are still moving forward.
Choose to keep going, no matter whether you're moving through a peak, a trough, or a plateau.
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
If you don't want to be deceived, be informed.
I was reading 2 Thessalonians this week, and there is a command to 'Let no-one deceive you in any way' in chapter 2. It set me thinking about how you can do that in all walks of life.
How do you let no-one deceive you?
It seems the best way is to be informed through a trusted and reputable source.