A Virtual Trip to Paris on Christmas Day

is-1Joyeux Noel! Merry Christmas in French. It’s Christmas Day here outside San Francisco and I am writing my first blog post for my new theme C’est La Vie! (This is life!) I hope you are somewhere warm celebrating the birth of our dear Savior Jesus, who came to bring light to our darkness and freedom and hope for eternal life to each one of us.

Now that my first book, Becoming Miriam: A Life Transformed by God is published and available for sale on Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle/ebook img_1397formats, I can go forth with my plans of going to Paris and fulfilling my dream of being a writer and artist there. I plan on taking a long trip to write in the cafe where famous authors wrote during the Romance-age of Paris and paint where famous artists painted..

I plan to go to Cafe Les Deux Magots in the Saint-Germain-des-Prés area of Paris, which was the rendezvous of the literary and is-2intellectual society. I know the booth where Hemingway wrote and desire to sit with my laptop and work on my second book, which is a continuation of my first, how God is leading me to France to live and minister there. Think what inspiration this will be. Sipping on a Cafe Creme, letting a buttery croissant melt in my mouth. Watching all the people, hearing French spoken and using my limited French with the waiter.

After a day writing, I hope to take my pastels down to the river Seine, the main large river that runs through Paris in a snake shape, and paint the famous bridges. I will take a coffee and walk till I find that perfect one, perhaps with Notre Dame Cathedral in the background, Think what inspiration that will be, to imagine is-3how Picasso, Monet, and Chagall painted the same spot, and to be surrounded by other artists hoping to make their mark in the art world. I’ll capture how the sunlight dances on the dark green water, and the clouds floating by. Perhaps there will be a small child with a colorful balloon.

My heart will soar as my dream comes true, as God is a giver of good dreams. It has been a hard, long wait, with the passing of my father this summer, and recovery from a car accident of 14 months, along with a bout with melanoma cancer.

But our God promises to bring good out of evil and sickness, to give us the hope of life with a loving God who adopts us as His child, even when we are alone and abandoned by our own families. He will never leave us or abandon us, and will come live in our heart when we ask him to forgive our sins and give us a clear, new beginning.

You can learn how to have this personal relationship with God by reading my book, which shares how I found this same relationship is-4after a life that left me with a broken heart and damaged life. Jesus was faithful to restore me and can for you too, no matter how wounded you are.

Back to France…I have some resources to share with you if you would like to come along and dream with me about going to Paris. Read the book: The Paris Wife: The First Mrs. Hemingway, by Paula McLain.The Paris Wife takes place in the hopelessly romantic 1920s, as Hadley, a 28-year-old virgin, and Hemingway, a terribly ambitious 21-year-old wounded in the First World War, start their lives together in France.

is-5McLain smartly explores Hadley’s ambivalence about her role as supportive wife to a budding genius, and the novel is at its most powerful and devastating in its portrayal of two key moments in the marriage: when Hadley leaves a valise with her husband’s manuscripts on a train, only to see them stolen, and later, when she realizes he has left her out of his first novel,The Sun Also Rises.

It is a great read, and allows the reader to step into the romance of 1920s Paris. For a movie that does the same thing, I recommend the movie Midnight in Paris (2011), directed by Woody Allen, starring Owen Wilson and Rachel McAdams set in modern day Paris. While on a trip to Paris with his fiancée’s family, Gil, a writer, 220px-Midnight_in_Paris_Posterwalks the streets of Paris at midnight only to be offered a ride in a car that has him time traveling back to the romance of the 1920s. There he meets the greats: Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, and Picasso.

I hope you have enjoyed our little trip to Paris today, and will follow along on my blog to enjoy more! I also plan to go to the South of France and visit Nice, where Chagall and Picasso both have museums.

Blessings to you, dear reader on this Christmas Day.
Un joyeux Noël à tous nos lecteurs.

Au Revoir!

To read a synopsis of my book, click above or go to Amazon.com

To view my greeting cards that feature my art, click above or go to miriamsarzotti.com


Smile and Say “Head Shot”

One of the fun things of being a writer is having head shots taken.  A head shot is just that, a photograph of your head, hopefully smiling and looking professional.  They are used on  book jackets,  blogs, Facebook and other social media pages and for publicity.

How I came to have mine taken is a God story.  And I would like to share it with you.

I came to realize that I needed a professional head shot if I was going to be taken seriously as a writer.  It is year two for me on writing my book and I am almost ready to self publish.  I knew it was time to upgrade from the fuzzy digital camera shots that graced my Facebook and blog pages, you know the ones taken with your own arm extended out capturing yourself in the shot at the local flower gardens?

So I asked the Lord in prayer one day. “Lord, I need a good head shot, but don’t have the money to pay a professional.  Will you help me get them when I am at Mt. Hermon’s

Picture A

Christian Writer Conference coming up in a few weeks?  Knowing my prayer had been heard, I promptly forgot about it.

Fast forward to the last day of the conference,  I was exhausted and had slept in late.  I was hurrying across campus and saw a photographer set up outside taking what appeared to be head shots. I stopped dead in my tracks. “Oh are you taking head shots today for us?” I asked the kind looking photographer.

picture B

“Actually we are shooting staff photos today but I would be happy to take yours for you.”

“Really?  Gosh, I couldn’t today,  I look a mess, have no makeup on and haven’t slept well for five nights.” I gushed. “I live locally, could I come another time?”

“Sure, give me your business card and I will email you and arrange a time and date.”

He introduced himself as Dan Dawson, the official webmaster and

Picture C

photographer at Mt. Hermon.  “We were actually thinking of offering head shots at next years conference.  Would you be willing to take a short survey to help us determine what to offer and how much to charge? We are thinking of offering hair and makeup as well.”

“Oh, I would be happy to” I smiled.  “But Dan will you photo shop out my double chin for me?

“Yes Miriam, I will be happy too”. he smiled.

I laughed out loud as I hurried to breakfast. God had answered my prayer in such a miraculous and last minute way!

Picture D

Two weeks later, I zipped over in my red Zip car and met up with Dan at the studio.  We took some inside shots in front of a dark and light screen for book jackets then went out into the sunny yet breezy spring day.  I sat on a park bench with a beautiful purple azalea behind me as he clicked away.  I posed all my former Miss Belmont of 1979 poses and tried to look like a fun but serious writer.

At one point, the wind came up and blew my hair all over just like I would get with a wind machine in studio.  I let the joy of the Lord smile out of my eyes and escape in the

Picture E

softness of my laugh.  I felt beautiful and special. What fun I was having.

Today I got the proofs back.  I was very pleased how Dan made this fifty something year old woman look gorgeous.  I sent seven photos of my favorites back to  him to photo shop out those frown line and double chins!  I guess I am still a vain beauty queen down deep. 🙂 But God loves me as I am, and He loves you how you are.  We are all beautiful to Him.  He has made everything beautiful in His time. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

Will you help me?  Share in my God story by voting for which shot you like best.  Leave me a reply by clicking on comments below with your choice. A, B, C, D, E.

And praise God with me for answering prayer in the humorous way He knows best!  My God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)

Help me get lots of votes by sharing this post with your friends by LIKE or TWEET or Pin below or above.

 


My devotion is published!…a love letter to the Lord..

My love letter to the Lord

My sweet Lord, such love and goodness happened this week. Your miracle of allowing me to show my art at my church’s mission holiday fair after all. And yesterday finding out some of my writing is being published on the national level.  Oh, and not to mention the possible job.

I love how faithful you are, that in the dry seasons of our life, when we are so anxious for you to open a door, you open three at once!  I love how you have a way of raining down blessings, and how I know from experience you wait till the last possible moment, yet your timing is perfect.  I have seen you come through when I am down to my last few dollars in my savings account and I don’t know where money will come from for next month’s bills.

From Pinterest

My heart overflows as I watch your perfect sunset of my favorite colors, pink and purple tonight.  I saw a pin on Pinterest today that said God is a designer. How true.  You are the ultimate Artist and Creator.  Every sunrise and sunset you paint a canvas of color for us, and every evening you hang the moon and stars in a navy blue sky.  I have enjoyed so much walking at night and riding my bike under the bright moon.

I have noticed I see things more clearly with an artist’s eye now, with your eye, such as how the seasons change and the beauty of each.  Fall, one of my favorites, brings baking, homemade soups, quilting while sipping pumpkin lattes and crunchy gold, red and yellow leaves on the ground.

This evening, I realized how blessed I am to do the things you do, be an artist and writer.  It took 51 years to get to this place but I love painting and I love being a writer, and now an author.  WOW, author.  It was nine months ago I picked up my pen and stated writing my book, on a rainy day in January at Peets Coffee.  Nine months of joy, frustration, rewrites, editing, critiquing, writer conferences, blogging, subscribers, plug ins, Facebook cartoons, statistics, submission, rejection and now finally acceptance.   An editor felt my devotion “Our Sweet Fragrance” was good enough to publish.  In a book.  That many will see, read and grow closer to you because of it.  WOW.

As an author, you write our names in your book , our tears in your book and our days in your book.  My art contains your Word in Scripture, knowing that my word that goes forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void. (Isaiah 51:11)  How is it I am growing to be more like you and your image everyday? (smile)

I am the rose of Sharon and the lily of the valleys - Song of Solomon 2:1

Thank you Jesus for being my sweet fragrance (2 Corinthians 2:15), and my Rose of Sharon (Songs 2:1). For giving me the words to write the beautiful devotion to you and the ability to paint a Scripture painting to go along with it, entitled Rose of Sharon.

For giving me a vision of you tossing dozens of red rose petals all over me as I rolled on my bed in glee, over finding out my devotion was accepted for publication in Penned from the Heart*.  Of confirming my dream and encouraging me in my journey with you. My heart is full of gratitude and love for you. Ani Ohevet atah Yeshua.
Your love, Miriam

Rose of Sharon is for sale on my website giftsofhisglory.com.  Click here or above on ‘my art’ to see all my Scripture paintings that make wonderful holiday gifts.

Yearly Christian devotional for 2013

*I am sorry I cannot publish my devotion here on this blog until after it has been printed and published in the devotional book.  Rules of the publishing game!  Devotional books can be ordered beginning in December for the 2013 version in which my devotion appears,  at www.gloriaclover.com.  Retail at $9.95)

Leave me a reply:  What dream has the Lord given you?

Click LIKE or TWEET and share this post with your friends!

 

 


Forgotten Girls…

Forgotten girls…

Commit you way unto the Lord...Psalm 37:5

One of the most wonderful things that came out of my attending Mt. Hermon’s Christian Writer’s Conference last March was a friendship with Kay Marshall Strom and her husband Dan Kline.  Both are celebrated authors and Kay has a heart for helping exploited girls and women around the world who are sexually trafficked. I met Kay and Dan as she taught the “Writing with Sizzle” class during the conference which I attended.  Kay took me under her wing, helping me to take my book in a new direction, turning it from a memoir into a personal experience with self help genre.  They have been kind enough to critique my new outline and book proposal as a gift to me.  (a little bit on getting my book published as I promised you!)

One day during the conference, I was browsing the authors bookstore and came across a book called ‘Forgotten Girls” by Kay.  I quickly picked up the book and read the book jacket.  Kay had traveled with a group all around the world telling the plight of young orphaned girls and women with no hope who were being trafficked across borders and sold into sexual slavery.

The Lord had been tugging on my own heart regarding working with children who had been trafficked.  I had a vivid dream two years ago of children being trafficked right in my own backyard of San Francisco.  In the dream, i heard the pleas of three little five year old girls, asking why men were hurting them, as their mother sold them into slavery.  As I read Kay’s Forgotten Girls, and the work being done by She is Safe, an international ministry whom Kay had collaborated with in writing the book,

I knew in my heart and spirit this was the work the Lord was calling me to. I now had a focus for my artwork and ministry Gifts of His Glory.  My Biblical Scripture paintings would be dedicated to helping young orphaned girls and women in places like India and Indonesia find rescue and hope of aftercare through the sales of my paintings.  I decided to donate 50% of all sales to the work of She is Safe, targeting the places and stories that had touched my heart

The Lord also prompted me to donate paintings to Christian ministries such as Freedom House in San Francisco and Zoe Children Homes in Los Angeles, as a gift to help them raise money through auctions and galas for their work..  In my own small way, I was now able to help stop this horrible crime against children.  The most amazing thing is how it has brought healing to my own heart from my own abuse as a child by giving me a voice for others who have no voice.

I include here my latest painting entitled “Purple Daises”, taken from a garden in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, where beauty resides in the midst of hidden and dark suffering of children.  I chose Psalm 37:5 to include in the collage “Commit your way unto the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass”. Amen.

(Purple Daisies sells for $100 and can be purchased at www.giftsofhisglory.com – Won’t you take a peek at the artwork for sale and help rescue a child? Thank you!


Bridges and Connections

Bridges and Connections…

San Francisco is  my town.  I was born at Kaiser Hospital on Geary Blvd, 51 years ago!  I love sailing on the Bay, the cable cars, Christmas at Union Square and biking at the Presidio right under the Golden Gate Bridge.  That beautiful Golden Gate.

Gets me thinking of other bridges and connections in our lives, namely Jesus, our bridge to peace with our Heavenly Father and to Heaven.  One day we will travel that bridge in the Spirit to the other side and meet Him face to face.  Can’t wait, how about you?
So when my Arts of the Covenant group decided to have our next gallery show to celebrate the Golden Gate’s 75th birthday, entitled “Bridges and Connections: Manmade, natural, and metaphorical” I pondered on what type of painting I would do.

So I thought of painting the bridge, but rejected it as being too hard.  Other famous bridges?…no, didn’t want to do them either.  Ahh Ha!  yes, I will do one of my Scripture paintings of…..No, I am not going to tell you!  You will have to come out and see it at the Gallery show on July 21 and 22nd in downtown Menlo Park, (the old Bank of the West Building at 950 University Avenue) where you will find a beautiful show by artists of faith along this theme.  At the same time, the City of Menlo Park is having its annual art marketplace so there will be lots of art to see and things to do.  Come have a cool glass of lemonade and mingle with me and my fellow artists at the reception.

Speaking of art, I just finished a new piece today entitled “Orange Tulips” with Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths”.


Orange Tulips Proverbs 3:5
 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths
It is for sale for $100 at my art website (click above) or go to www.giftsofhisglory.com.  I give you a peek at it above…(remember:  50% of art sales go to She is Safe to help orphaned girls and women be free of abuse and sexual slavery and trafficking.)

When you think of bridges, what comes to mind for you?  Leave me a reply, would love to hear from you!