Why Are All the Santas Deflated?

This morning I awoke to bright sunshine and warm weather, typical of  Northern California at Christmas time.  I decided to take a bike ride through the neighborhood on my way to my favorite cafe, La Tartine, in the next town over.

As I pedaled my bike under a bright blue sky, I marveled at the Christmas decorations at each house-colorful ornaments hanging from tree limbs, dazzling in the sunshine, red and white candy canes lining the driveways and a slew of wire reindeer looking naked without their twinkling lights.

And then it struck me.  Many of the houses I passed had huge, inflatable Santas, faced down on the lawn. Why were all the Santas deflated? My mind raced.  Did someone pop poor old Santa as a prank?  But wait.  Frosty the Snowman was down also.  I grew more confused. Perhaps, I wondered, they were inflated with air each evening, only to dissipate like a melting snowman come light of day?

Then it dawned on me. We too are like those deflated Santas during Christmastime. We get all pumped up about the tinsel and gifts, the chocolate and peppermints, and the sparkling lights at night. Then we find ourselves depressed, with the air let out of us. Maybe, it’s an unkind word or act of meanness by our boss. Deflate.  Or most likely, that hurtful thing said by our dysfunctional family member.  Pop.   Perhaps, the school kids didn’t like our home baked cookies or even the Costco bought cookies  Flattened.

But there is good news!  We don’t ever have to be deflated again!  God fills us with His Spirit, the Holy Spirit, when we believe in His Son, Jesus, as our Lord and Savior.   He fills our hearts with Joy, Peace, Love, Patience, Kindness and Goodness. And hope. All the things Christmas is supposed to be about.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16.) 

“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14.) 

Immanuel means “God with us.”  Jesus came to earth to dwell with us. He takes up residence in our hearts and promises to never leave us or forsake us. (Hebrews 13:5-6.)   We can ask him to refresh our spirits and He will do so.  He will comfort our pain, encourage our discouragement, and shed grace and light on our difficult situation. We never lose His presence in us and He is immediately there when we ask anything of Him.

Do you want His joy, peace and love in your heart?  Wouldn’t this be the perfect time to accept God’s free gift of salvation, knowing Jesus came as a baby, just for you, to forgive your sins and reconcile you with God?

Yes? then pray the prayer below:

Dear Jesus:  I know I am a sinner and ask you to forgive my sins.  I invite you to come dwell in my heart as my Lord and Savior.  I want to be filled with your Holy Spirit and know you as my God.  Thank you for coming down to earth to save me and for loving me so much.  I love you Jesus.

Do you know angels are rejoicing in Heaven right now because you’ve entered the Kingdom of God as His child?  Merry Christmas-you have received the most perfect gift of all!

And a special Merry Christmas to all my readers and followers. May you be transformed by the miracle of His birth this season…

To see my Scripture paintings and greeting cards go to giftsofhisglory.com or click on ‘my art’ above.


The Kiss. The Thinker. And the Gates of Hell. A Day in the Life of an Artist…

It was a beautiful fall day, clear blue skies with a soft breeze, as I waited for the train with my friend Sylvia.  “What exhibit are we going to see today at the Cantor Museum at Stanford?”  I asked her.  “I think the Rodin statues.” she mused.  “Hmm…Rodin, didn’t he sculpt the famous The Kiss and The Thinker?” “Yes, and the Gates of Hell,” Sylvia replied.  Excitement began to grow as the train rushed us to the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto.

The Tinker and Me

We met up with my fellow artists from our Arts of the Covenant group, a faith based group of artists who meet monthly and exhibit our work in gallery shows.

As we began our tour, the docent, an elderly lady with a walker, surprised us all by the fascinating story she told of Auguste Rodin, complete with pictures of him throughout his life.  The museum has 200 ‘casts’ or bronze statues of his work, the largest collection outside of Paris.

As we passed through the galleries, I was pleased to see his statue The Kiss and The Thinker and took my photo by it.  Next we came to his work Gates of Hell and I was overcome with emotion. These large

doors depicting the Gates of Hell had over 20 figures and took him 20 years to sculpt. I said a quiet prayer of thanks, that I would never have to go through those gates, as I had accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior and His free gift of eternal life.

“I wonder how he kept the clay wet all those years?”, I commented to my fellow artisans.  “How do you even make a cast?”I pondered. I grew up working with clay and throwing pots on the potters wheel but hadn’t specialized in ceramics, so was unsure. “His talent is remarkable, how he molds his subjects in such likeness and beauty.” I reflected.

It got me thinking. We are referred to as lumps of clay in the Bible and God as the potter, molding and making us into a beautiful image of Himself.  “But now, O Lord, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.” (Isaiah 64:8)  Like Rodin, God chips away at our imperfections, refining us through the process.  We need to admit our powerlessness in His hands and give Him permission to shape us as He wishes.  But we often fight Him, trying to jump off the potter’s wheel and take charge of our lives.

The Bible also refers to us as jars of clay. “But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. (2 Corinthians 4:7) His Holy Spirit shines out through the cracks of our pots leading other to Him. Just like Rodin’s sculptures reflect his creative mastery, so God’s creative mastery shines through us, His creations.

As the tour ended, we gathered for lunch in the cafe, and then for a walk amongst statues in the garden. I thanked the Lord for His gift of creativity that allowed me to point others to His love and saving grace through my artwork and writing. Yes, even as a cracked pot.

Do you need to ask the Lord to use your brokenness and pain to be a vessel for his love and light to others?  Do you need to ask His forgiveness for trying to be the potter in your life rather than the clay?  If so, please pray this prayer:

Dear Jesus, I admit I have tried to run my own life and have made a mess of it.  I want to ask you into my heart as my Lord and Savior, forgiving my sins and mistakes and filling me with your Holy Spirit. I receive your free gift of eternal life with you in Heaven. Thank you I will not have to enter the gates of hell and have eternal separation from you. Have your way in me as your child and creation.  Amen.

Art Greeting Card

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The Eyes Have It – God’s Healing Power Today

Today I get to share the good news of answered prayer.  Many of you readers will recall my earlier post where I talked about the problems I was having with my eye…the jelly part detaching and inflamation in my left eye.  A serious problem. (see My New Creation post earlier this month)

The best doctors at Stanford where concerned it indicated a autoimmune disease common in young women (well I am not THAT young, but the doctor thought so!).  They tested me for a lot of scary diseases including cancer.  I was wondering if I was going to Heaven earlier than I expected but I received the news the day before July 4th, that all the test were negative!  Yes negative!  What freedom to celebrate along with our National Independence Day here in America.

I was still worried though as the specialist had said chemo was the preferred treatment. However, as I waited to see my doctor again in a few weeks, a miracle began to happen.  My eye got better.  The floaters decreased. I was encouraged.

At my appointment, my doctor was surprised how well my eye scans looked and said, “Miriam, these look beautiful. Your inflammation is down and the floaters are less.”

“Well Doctor, I have had many people praying for me for divine healing. All my Facebook friends and blog  readers.  I put it in God’s hands because I knew I would never survive chemo and He is faithful to hear our prayers and answer them.”

He silently nodded along with me.

Now this is a very unexpected reaction from my doctor.  He is the top Eye Specialist in the country who feels he can heal anything, and says he is like God in that matter. I, of course, kid him and say, “oh get over yourself, you are too much. only God is God.”

He then said something else remarkable.  “Miriam, I want to give you some non steroid eye drops for the floaters and remaining inflammation.  They probably won’t work, but let’s try.”

As I pulled away in the cab, tears came to my eyes.  I cried for how good and amazing God is. I cried for how much He cares for us, even though we sin and mess up all the time. I cried for how faithful my friends and readers had been to petition God for me and how He is still our healer today.  I cried that I wouldn’t have to do chemo.

Once home, I prayed and asked the Lord to anoint the eye drops . I began to use them four times a day as instructed.  Another miracle happened.  My eyes got even better! The cloud of floaters kind of parted like the Red Sea. I can read words on the page now. I am trusting the Lord for total healing of my eye and that by next month’s appointment, the inflammation will be gone.

What healing miracle do you need today?  Do you know that Jesus healed all kinds of diseases and afflictions while He was on earth?  Read it for yourself in the gospels in the New Testament that record His deeds. Start with the Book of Matthew. His power to heal is still available to you today. Besides physical healing, Jesus can heal you spiritually by setting you free from sin and death and reconciling you with God.

All it takes is opening your heart to Him and asking Him to forgive your sins. His Holy Spirit will come and dwell in your heart and give you the gift of eternal life. The Bible says “If you confess with your mouth and believe on the Lord’s resurrection, you will be saved and live.”  (Romans 10:9) Now, that’s glorious good news. And I might add, a miracle of grace that only comes from God  If you want this free gift of spiritual healing and life forever in Heaven, please pray this prayer below:

Lord, I confess with my mouth you are the Son of God and came to die for my sins.  I believe you rose from the dead after three days and make your home in Heaven now.  I ask for a new life in you and the free gift of eternal life.  Please come heal my body, mind and soul from all my pain. I ask for a miracle of healing in you name. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer, do three things:

1. Tell someone you accepted Jesus into your life today.

2.  Find a Bible teaching church and start attending to be part of the fellowship of other Christians and learn God’s character and heart for you through hearing His Word preached.

3.  Get a Bible and start reading it a little every day.  Most churches will give you one if you ask or you can find them at a Christian bookstore where they can help you pick out one.

Leave me a reply if you prayed this prayer so I can rejoice along with the angels in Heaven who rejoice every time a person becomes born again in Jesus.

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Lord Open My Eyes…Finding God’s Perspective on Your LIfe

Today I woke up in a funk. I knew I needed to get back on schedule and write, but I didn’t want to. I was irritated about my eye and the partial blindness I am experiencing. As you can imagine, as an artist and writer I need my eyes to see and accomplish the tasks God asks me to do. I spent all day yesterday at the doctors to discover the jelly part of my eye had totally detached, causing a wall of floaters, flashing lights and dimness.  It was difficult for me to see and read.  The doctor told me it would take 3-4 weeks for the eye to calm down and restore to a more normal state, however the floaters would remain. He informed me I was prone to having the retina detach, and going blind in my eye. Great. That’s all I need now Lord. Will you heal my eye please Lord?  I am scared and don’t want to lose my sight.

Hoping to pull myself out of my bad mood, I went to Peet’s Coffee to spend some time in God’s Word.  I opened my bible study Write His Answer, A Bible Study for Christian Writers by Marlene Bagnull,  I laughed, seeing today’s lesson was on Proclaiming Freedom and sight for the blind. I knew this was not a coincidence. The chapter quoted Luke 4:18-19 from the Bible when Jesus first spoke in His hometown of Nazareth at the Temple.  He was handed the book of Isaiah and began to read:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, he has appointed me to preach Good News to the poor, he has sent me to heal the brokenhearted and to announce the captives shall be released and the blind shall see, that the downtrodden shall be freed from their oppressors and that God is willing to give blessings to all who come to Him.”  He then said “These Scriptures have come true today in Me” and sat down.

Jesus was proclaiming He is the ultimate freedom giver.  He came to heal the blind, the brokenhearted, the captive. Sometimes, however, Jesus wants to open our eyes to spiritual truths my Bible study read.  Hmm, I think I need some spiritual truths this morning, I thought as I sipped my coffee.

He showed me I was not seeing His perspective on my writing ministry or the time he was giving me to stay home and write full time. I was complaining about the financial sacrifices I had to make to do so.  Having so little money and living on a tight budget.  Was it worth it?, I wondered. He gently corrected my ‘sight‘ as I spent time in His Word. My Child, it is a blessing to help bring freedom to those who are blind, brokenhearted and captive each and every time you write My Truth. I am giving you the freedom in this season to do this.” “Yes Lord, I see that now. I am sorry for grumbling.” I replied. “You can trust me to heal your eye physically in my timing, as I am the God that heals you.” (Exodus 15:26) “Thank you Lord, I will hold tightly to your promise.” I said.

What about you?  Are you seeing things clearly or is you vision blurred?  Do you need him to touch you and heal you so you can see life from His perspective? He is a God….

“who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
 who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s”  (Psalm 103:3-5)

To correct your vision, simply pray:  Lord, please give me your perspective on my life.  Show me the areas I need to repent of and heal my heart and soul from the pain and hurts of the past. Give me freedom from any negative thoughts and patterns. Show me your love and compassion. I want full freedom in you. I ask you to remove any spiritual blindness I have and show me your Truth by coming into my heart as my Lord and Savior, to forgive my sins and give me eternal life in Heaven with you.  Come walk side by side with me as my Friend every day through your Holy Spirit.  I trust you Jesus.  You are faithful.  Amen.

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Leave me a message by replying below if you found a new freedom in Jesus so I can share in your happiness.


 

 


A Mother’s (and Father’s) Day Story: Finding life after abortion…

This mother’s day I will be doing something different in celebration of my daughter Lynley.  I will be standing on Mother’s Day Sunday at church when they ask all the mothers to stand.  You see Lynley was my sweet baby who didn’t live outside of the womb.  I aborted her when I was 30 years old.  The shame that I hadn’t given my baby life always kept me from acknowledging I was a mother.  But not this Mother’s Day.

I am able to do this as I have received healing and forgiveness for my abortion.  I want to offer that same healing to women (and men) who are reading my post today.  I know this is not an easy topic to address, but one I feel the Lord wanted me to share with you.

Before I became a born again Christian, I lived a very worldly life.  Sexual relationships with unhealthy men was my norm. A fast paced life as a MBA in the corporate world running after success and money.  This coupled with carrying the pain of an abusive childhood  caused me to crash and hit bottom at age 30.  I was diagnosed with a clinical suicidal depression and hospitalized. In the midst of this, I got pregnant by my boyfriend who my doctors were trying to seperate me from because he was abusive.

I was so happy to be pregnant when the home pregnancy test came back positive.  Joy filled me.  I had always wanted to be a mother, but wondered how could I possibly me one now.  I was so ill and depressed, fighting for my life every day.  My doctors, fearing I couldn’t sustain a pregnancy,  recommended a ‘therapeutic’ abortion, to save the life of the mother, me, over the unborn child.

My Catholic psychiatrist even told me the Catholic church, which I had grown up in, would agree.  I was so worried the baby would be deformed on the powerful medications I was taking.  My parents did not offer me any help, refusing me shelter to raise my baby in.  Helpless, on disability I did not know where to turn.  I did not know about Christian crisis pregnancy centers or help within the Christian community.  I listened to the worldly advice and scheduled the abortion at my hospital.

A few days before, I changed my mind and wanted to keep my baby.  My parents and boyfriend refused me any promise of financial help or shelter.  I was alone and abandoned.  Trapped.

I cried the whole way through the abortion as my baby was suctioned out of me.  My girlfriend held my hand and her knuckles were white from my grip.  I screamed in pain and afterward threw up in the sink.  My baby was gone.

But there is hope in my story.  You see my baby, whom I named Lynley, had a soul and spirit upon conception.  In the Bible it says of God: “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13.)  God breathed life into her.  She had a beating heart as early as 21 days.  She was not a blob of tissue as Planned Parenthood will tell you.

When I aborted her, her soul and spirit returned to God where she is alive in Heaven, waiting for me to join her.  How do I know this for certainty?  God promises us in the Bible: “and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.  (Ecclesiastes 12:7.)

I was blessed to find healing through the love of women at a Christian pregnancy center near my home. I read and worked through the workbook entitled: Forgiven and Set Free: A Post-Abortion Bible Study for Women by Linda Cochrane with a class of women. I found healing for my abortion 22 years later.

We studied Scripture that told me who I was in Jesus, and that I was forgiven for even the sin of aborting my child. I learned others had sinned against me by not offering help to me and their child and grandchild.  I found comfort in knowing  they would be held accountable by God one day but God was calling me to even forgive them.

I found understanding of the grief process a woman (and man) goes through. How to be set free from the horrible shame, secrecy, and darkness I felt. I learned Jesus came to shed His healing light into our darkness.  To free us from the bonds of guilt, depression, anxiety, and eating disorders, all symptoms of Post Abortion Stress Syndrome. (PASS).

Jesus in Heaven

I was overjoyed to discover that I get my daughter back. I know I will spend eternity with her as I have received the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.  He promises us eternal life, free of any pain or tears, if we trust Him as our Lord and Savior.

This means we ask Him for forgiveness of our sins, sins He took on the cross for us so we could spend eternity with Him. Because He rose from the dead on the third day, we are promised that same resurrection when we die, to receive a new glorified body in heaven, where there is only light.((1 Corinthians 15:44; Romans 6:5: For since we have become one with Him by sharing in His death, we shall also be one with Him by sharing in His resurrection).

If you have had an abortion, or played a part in a decision for abortion, asking for and receiving the Lord’s forgiveness is the key to healing.  If so, please pray this prayer.

Dear Jesus: I thank you that you have received my baby’s (babies) souls into Heaven where I can see them again one day.  I ask you to forgive my sins and come into my heart as my Lord and Savior today.  I believe you died on the cross for me and rose from the dead so I could have eternal life with you in Heaven.  Heal my heart from the pain of my abortion(s) and set me free so I can live a life free from the past.  Thank you Jesus.  Amen.

If you are pregnant, know there are options for you besides abortion.

Contact a Christian crisis pregnancy center or pregnancy resource center and go for an appointment.  Google on the Internet or look in the yellow pages for their number and address.

Call a confidential pregnancy hot-line such as 1-800-BETHANY. They will help you understand your options for either adoption or keeping your baby and help you with resources to do so (even if your family abandoned you and you are homeless).  And most likely give you an ultrasound of your baby where you can see its heart beating. All for FREE.

Talk to your pastor or minister in confidence.  Tell a trustworthy friend.

Give life to your baby and for you too!  Abortion doesn’t just murder your baby, it murders your soul as well.

If you have had an abortion:, Attend a class for post abortive women (or men) offered at a Christian pregnancy resource center or church. Many have classes and retreats you can take to help you work through the process of healing. There is also a workbook for men entitled: Healing a Father’s Heart: A Post-Abortive Bible Study for Men by Linda Cochrane.

Lynley's resurrected spirit painting

As part of my healing process, I celebrated the life of my child in Heaven.  I was encouraged to do something creative to thank Jesus for keeping care of my daughter.  I decided to paint a picture of Lynley’s resurrected spirit to thank Him and bring me peace.

I also planted a tree for her in Israel through www.treesfortheholyland.com. I am a Jewish Christian and love Israel, having been in ministry there for many years.  Planting a tree is a symbol of giving life.  In Judaism, each letter of the Hebrew alphabet has a numerical value.  The letter Chet equals the number 18. Chai which means life consists of the letter Chet symbolizing the number 18. Therefore, it costs $18 to plant a tree and give life. In return for doing so, I was blessed with a beautiful watercolor reproduction of a Jerusalem scene with a commemoration of my daughter. It read :

Tree Planted in Holy Land poster www.treesfortheholyland.com

A Tree had been planted in the Holy Land, In Celebration of Lynley, my daughter, For her heavenly homecoming, April 1991, Planted by Your ima (mother) Miriam.

I now have peace when I look at it framed on my wall.  I no longer feel shame or guilt. I can acknowledge myself as a mother and tell others about my daughter now. I am excited to see her one day soon and hold her in my arms for the first time. I am forgiven and set free.

Will you find the peace and forgiveness only Jesus can bring to you today?

 

If you need a confidential ear please feel free to leave me a private message at miriam@giftsofhisglory.com.  I am here to help you.

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The Counterattack…The Devil Strikes Back

One of the lesser know facts about being a Christian, is that as we step out in Faith to serve the Lord in our ministries, we have an adversary, the Devil, who is not happy with our progress, particularly when we have a huge Victory for Jesus.  This was the case Halloween week which I shared on my blog how God gave me the Victory of raising money and advocates for She is Safe and the work they are doing around the world for abused and exploited women. (see Blessings, Paintings and Spooks….Oh My!)

Cross with Pearls Matthew 13:46

Not only did I sell quite a few paintings, but my blog post on how people could help stop human trafficking went viral!  I had over 100 views a day on my blog post and trafficking to my entire site was up well over 200 views.  Now that might not seem like a lot, but it is for me!  I only started this blog last summer and I have watched the Lord increasingly bring more traffic to my site and receive good feedback.

So I shouldn’t have been surprised when I came down with the flu/bronchitis/sinusitis with a vengeance, feeling like a bomb was dropped on me. The Devil loves to put illness on God’s Saints and I was down for the count.  I had just started a holiday job at Sees Candies (another blessing) and had to stop in the middle of training.

Would I lose my job?  Would I still be able to go to the Jews for Jesus Retreat the following weekend?  All these thoughts rumbled around in my feverish head, at one point wondering if I was going to be called home when my fever spiked to 104 degrees.  Getting this sick is scary for me as I am allergic to most antibiotics so it is a risk for me to take them.  I dragged my body to my Zip car and drove to the doctors (one of the worst things about living alone is getting sick alone) where my doctor played a guessing game of which antibiotic to give me.  “Let’s try Zithromax, I’ll give you a five day high dose that will last in your system for 10 days.”  “Alright” I nervously replied, hoping and praying this one would attack the virus.

As I tossed in bed with my fever, the Scripture “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me,” ran through my Spirit. (Psalm 23:4) Yes, I was at a breaking point for either life and healing, or death and eternal life.  I knew I was in God’s hands and was a peace with His outcome.  I had the assurance that I wouldn’t taste death, that my soul would go straight to heaven, and in fact, Jesus would come get me as He promises He will do. (John 14:3: And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.)

My fence and rail quilt

As I slowly got better, I sat on the couch covered in my rail-fence pattern quilt I had made, slurping chicken noodle soup and sucking on sugar free popsicles, all spacy on the codeine cough syrup, yet coughing, coughing, coughing.  I realized I was going to have to stay home from my retreat.  I had so looked forward to hanging out with my Messianic Jewish friends at the Jews for Jesus retreat, singing to the Messianic music, eating wonderful meals at Missions Springs Conference Center in the Santa Cruz Mountains and the divine appointments the Lord had for me.  I was sensing that this might be the time that I would meet that Jewish believing husband I have been waiting patiently (o.k. not so patiently!) for.  To hike in the beautiful redwoods, sit in on stimulating lectures and just be all around blessed and relaxed.

California Redwood Forest

So it made me start wondering, Lord why does it appear you let the enemy win this round and keep me too sick to go to the retreat, which I know was your will for me?  What He said to me surprised me: “You have been working too hard, and not having enough fun.  I have been missing spending time with you and now we have all week to snuggle together on the couch as you watch movies and hold you at night so you rest comfortably.” To be honest, I much rather spend that time with Him at the retreat but He is Sovereign and knows best. I trust He can cross my path with that future husband another way very easily.

Last night, I asked Him to reveal what He would have done for me at the retreat.   He showed me my low self esteem and the negative messages I tell myself, mostly about how unattractive I feel growing older, especially losing my neckline, which I laughingly tell my friends, is getting the “turkey neck”.  “I want a neck job as a wedding present” I tell them, but I am serious!  Having been a former beauty queen at age 18, Miss Belmont of 1979, my looks were always something that made me feel good about myself, as inside I felt such shame and ugliness from the abuse I suffered as a child.

Me modeling at Miss Belmont 1979 pageant, look at that hair!

I know Scripture tells us we are fearfully and wonderfully made in Psalm 139:14:

For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

So I asked the Lord to let me experience His love for me in a more deep and personal way as I recover this next week, before I return to work at Sees.  Because this brokenness in me that let’s me see myself in this negative light, is my real sickness, my soul sickness.   God can turn what the enemy meant for evil (this flu sickness) and work it for good, (healing me by allowing me to see His viewpoint of me). “You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” – Genesis 50:20.

Will you pray that the God who made us and knew us before the foundation of the world, who brought us together in the dark places of the womb, would heal our souls of the lies and wounds of the enemy, giving us Victory today over our pasts?  Do you need to ask God for this soul healing for yourself today?  If so you can pray this prayer along with me:

“Dear Lord:  I need to feel your love for me as your child.  I know I have believed the lies of my family, friends and the Devil, who have spoken negative things into my life.  I believe you created me in the innermost places and made me unique and like you.  Help me to let go of the shame and self hatred I feel, and replace it with your love and the way you see me.  Bright. Beautiful. Full of your Joy.  Accepted and Loved in the Beloved.  For this is truth and you are Truth and I ask you to pierce my heart with this truth today.  Thank You Jesus, I love you.”

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L’Shannah Tovah (Happy New Year)

 

Blowing the Shofar on Rosh Hashanah

One of my favorite parts of the Fall season is the Jewish High Holidays that usually start in September with Rosh Hashanah (Head of the Year), followed by Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) and finally ends with Sukkot (Feast of the Tabernacles).  My dream is to experience them in Israel one day.  They say it is a site not to be forgotten to see Sukkot or little tabernacles built in every front and backyard throughout the Land.  Jewish people celebrate the time that God provided for them in the wilderness with temporary shelters, Sukkot, so they build them and eat and sleep in them during the seven days of Sukkot. It foreshadows when we will ‘tabernacle’ with God again in Heaven and in His new Kingdom on earth.

What I love most is the promise of a new year and beginning that Rosh Hashanah brings.  This year the Lord blessed me at my women’s conference at my church Abundant Life Christian Fellowship in Mt. View, California on the Friday night two days before Rosh Hashanah started.  The theme was God’s Masterpiece and our first lady Ronda Hamilton spoke on doing God’s will.  She shared how God had called her to become a medical doctor when she least expected it and how we can step out into our callings that God has on our lives.

There was a time of prayer and healing and I went forward asking God for all He had for me and to start over in a new beginning with Him.  At one point Sister Hamilton asked “Women of God, do you want to be made whole?”  My heart leaped at the thought of being healed mentally, physically,emotionally and spiritually.  “Remember the man who laid at the pools of Bethesda for 38 years and Jesus asked him if he wanted to be made whole?.  Do you want that wholeness too?  My whole body came under the power of the Holy Spirit and I heard the Lord whisper to me “I am healing every molecule in every cell of you body.”  Then I felt heat throughout my head  and the words “I am healing your mind”.  My heart was next as I felt the Lord heal me from every hurt I had every experienced.  As I stood there shaking with the healing warmth of my Lord, I felt Him brake off the shackle of rejection on my heart I had experienced all my life and felt His love and acceptance flow over me. “You are accepted in the Beloved” ran through my mind from Ephesians 1:6 and I now could call Him Savior and Abba in a way I had never been able to do before.  I cried and cried thanking the Lord for loving me when others in my life would not and for healing me.

How can He top that, I wondered?  What else did God have for me this weekend? In anticipation of the Jews for Jesus Rosh Hashanah service two days later on Sunday, I picked up my Zip car and zipped up to San Francisco. I was looking forward to seeing old friends from my time as a volunteer with them doing street evangelism and others from our monthly Chaverah (Fellowship). The service proved to be as beautiful as I had remembered…the prayers and songs in Hebrew, the sound of the shofar (ram’s horn) being blown as it will be the day Jesus returns for us in the clouds, the humorous and engaging testimony of a young Jewish believer in Yeshua (Jesus), and the yummy honey cake and apples dipped in honey (for a sweet new year) at the Oneg (party) following the service.

But what touched me the most was the sermon on the books of God.  The speaker preached on The Book of Life and The Book of Remembrance.  I was struck that God was an author and writer just like me!  He wrote the bestseller ‘The Bible” (true?!) and to think He writes our names in the book of Life when we accept His Son Yeshua as our Messiah.  So when we stand in Judgement before Him one day, He will open His book and see our name and admit us to heaven to be with Him for eternity.

I don’t know about you, but I wonder…Does he use a quill pen?, What is the parchment like? Or does He have a laptop?  He must be very busy as He has recorded every day of our lives from before time began and records every tear we cry, happy or sad. That to me shows a God who cares, who knows our every move, and knows the day He will call us back home to Him.

Is your name written in the Book of Life?  Have you accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, asking Him to take your sin and make you a new creation in Him? That is what Rosh Hashanah is all about.  Starting over with a new beginning.  On Yom Kippur, which follows 10 days later, we acknowledge the sacrifice and atonement (forgiveness) by Jesus when He died on the cross for our sins.

Cross with Rose Petals Romans 5:8

Would like to pray to ask Jesus into your heart and forgive your sins?  If so, you can pray this prayer and be born again.

Dear Jesus:
I admit I am a sinner and am in need of forgiveness.  I believe you died on the cross for me personally and that you were raised from the dead and am in Heaven right now.  I ask you into my heart to take control of my life and to be my Lord and Savior.  Thank you for loving me enough to lead me to repentance and show me my need for you.  Help me become the person  you intend for me to become and may your plan for my life come to pass.  I love you Lord and thank you for forgiving me today and giving me the gift of eternal life with you.  Amen.

Welcome to the Kingdom of God! Angels are rejoicing over you right now!  LIKE below and leave me a comment that you began a new life with the Lord today.  And I will rejoice with you and the angels as well! (smile)

Please LIKE or TWEET below to share this post with your friends…and help them get their names in the Book of Life…

Cross with Rose petals is for sale on my art website by clicking here or above at “My art”.

 

 

 

 

 


Eternity in Our Hearts

Colorful Zinnias Ecclesiastes 3:11

He makes all things beautiful in its time….He places eternity in their hearts..
Ecclesiastes 3:11

Yes He does.  Jesus that is.  He is in the business of making all things new.  Including me and you.  We are his precious works in progress, once we accept His free gift of grace.  He forgives our sins.  He places the Holy Spirit into our hearts to restore and renew all our fuzzy places and sinful spaces.  He changes us into the image of Himself.  And to give us hope, He puts eternity in our hearts.
What beautiful Words.  I thought a lot about this Scripture as I painted my next biblical Scripture painting today.  As always, I prayed about what to paint as a subject and what Scripture to go with it.  This time it was the colorful zinnias in a patch at Filoli Gardens.  I was drawn to their colors and sizes and how beautiful they were in the sunshine, with their petals reaching upwards to the sun.  How we will be one day in the glory of the Lord’s brilliance as we step into Heaven.  I imagine His smile of happiness on seeing me will be so bright. And I will radiate happiness and light in my new glorified body. Halleluiah. Just like the zinnias.

Do you ever think about eternity in the day to day struggles and problems of life here on earth?  I have to be honest and admit it is a passing thought now and then but lately I have been thinking of it more,  Maybe its getting older.  Knowing my time and work here on earth is going to come to an end.  Thinking thoughts such as “Lord, I feel I am not making enough impact for the Kingdom here on earth.  It seems I spend so much time waiting on you (!) and so little time leading others to you. Will my life matter in the scope of things?”
And then He whispers this Scripture in my heart….”I make everything beautiful in its time”….and I realized just for today, I used His gift of creativity in me and made a beautiful painting of His creation to bring joy to someone else’s heart.  And my life was made more beautiful for today…and I realized eternity IS in my heart.  I imagine seeing my Nana again and my baby daughter Lynley who did not live past the womb.  I imagine talking to Jesus’ mother Mary, who is my namesake of Miriam, (the Hebrew way to say “Mary” ). I will ask her to tell me what Jesus was like as a little boy, how it felt to be used by the Holy Spirit for a miracle. I imagine what it will be like to live FOREVER in peace with no tears or weight gain!  To have my family all restored, no longer dysfunctional, and not talking to one another.  To have a pure love for my mother and father despite the abuse and shame done to me as a child.

Because that is the kind of God we have.  He cares enough about us and our times of despair and hopelessness to give us the hope of being with HIm in eternity.  Heaven is real.  All it takes is being like a zinnia, turn your face up to the Son, Jesus, and ask Him to come into your hearts and forgive you for your sins.  To be your Lord and Savior.  It really is that simple.  And He will come and give you His Holy Spirit to make you all beautiful in His time…and deposit a little piece of eternity in your heart as a safekeeping and promise.
Please take a moment and share my post/painting by clicking on the “LIKE” button below and share the gift of eternity with your friends….
What do you look forward to most about eternity?  Leave me a reply..

I hope you enjoy my new collage “Colorful Zinnias”.  It is for sale for $100 at my art website.  Just click on ‘my art’ above or go to www.giftsofhisglory.com
Shalom and peace.