Friday, April 27, 2007

Blog Browsing

Have you ever wasted away and hour of your day doing absolutely nothing? If you haven't yet, then I have the perfect way for you to break that good habit. I've termed it "Blog Browsing." At the top of blogger blogs is a dashboard and on that dashboard is this nice little button that says, "Next Blog." One day, in my curiosity, I clicked it wondering where it would take me. I quickly jumped into another blog and then another and another. I was hooked. Now, needless to say there is JUNK out there and you have to be very careful about that. Have that back button handy! But, I find it to be endlessly fun to peek into other people's lives. Scott would say it's the "nosey neighbor" in me, and you know, he is right on. I love to watch people whether it's at the mall, out my front window, or through blogs.

Through my new-found past time I have discovered the world of craft blogging and let me tell you there are alot of them out there. You don't have to push the "next blog" button long to find one and when you do, there will be a bunch of links to other crafting sites and blogs.

I love to do crafty things, but I haven't done much for the last year and a half. Well, I suppose if you count designing and decorating my house a craft then I have been doing quite a bit! My mom and sisters are just as crafty as I am, but they actually take the time to do it, unlike me. So for Christmas, my mom asked me what kinds of crafty tools I needed. (She had already stocked up on a bunch of stuff for Anissa and Jessica.) I told her that since the tools she got me last year were still in their original packaging I better pass on craft things this year. She was so sweet and understanding but I felt like I popped her balloon.

My sister on the other hand, got me stuff anyway, but I am so glad she did!!! I have been wanting for a long time to try my hand at painting. I love to draw and I love to write. I figure that painting must go hand in hand with those two things. And hey, I've watched Donna Dewberry many times!! Two or three years ago I had declared that I wanted to start painting and asked for painting supplies for Christmas. I called my sister and got the low-down on what I would need. (She's a painter.) I ordered a Blick Art catalog and everything. I was all ready to order. Then I got cold feet. I didn't get any art supplies that year, but I never really stopped talking about it. So it was a totall shock when I opened my sister's gift this Christmas and found a red canvas bin filled with everything I needed to start painting! She even had a mug and tea in there for the cold nights when I would be painting. I was speechless. It was the coolest thing ever!

Yeah, the awesome red canvas bin sat by my craft table in the basement for a month before I ever even revisted it. (I'm awful!) Then the supplies sat for another couple weeks before I worked up the courage to just dig in!!! The ONE night I painted was glorious. I had no idea what I was doing. I'd never painted before--I mean really painted. Natalie and I paint all the time, but this was with real paints and watercolor paper and canvas. I had this picture in my head of what I wanted to create. It was very abstract--nothing to difficult, but I couldn't shrink it down enough to fit on my paper. It was so grand in my head. So I finished what I could that night and decided to come back to it later on, once I had gained some perspective. Yeah, that was 3 months ago. I haven't painted since. I have got to start setting aside time just for my craftiness to be exercised!

There is one other thing I have started AND completed in the past couple of months. One night, while I was watching tv, I started drawing Miss Spider. It began just as a little surprise for Natalie. Something to make her smile. (She loves when I draw pictures for her.) It turned out really well. So well in fact that I surprised myself. I wasn't sure what to do with it, since it wasn't just a bunch of scribbles like I thought it would be. My sister suggested I add pastels to it, so I added pastels. Then once I felt that it was finished I mounted and framed it. Now it is waiting to be hung. From start to finish it only took me 5 months! (That doesn't include the time that it will sit on the floow waiting to be hung. I'll let you know when that happens!)

Maybe that's why I don't do many crafts anymore! They sit forever waiting to be worked on, finished, or hung up. Hmmm... sounds like there's a sermon somewhere in that single thought. Another time... For now, I have a beautiful picture to find a place of honor for. It was a birthday present from my creative inspiration--my sister. It's where I am at right now. I just have to find the best place for it! It needs to be in a place that I see it often throughout the day and where visiting family and friends can enjoy it too. Where am I going to put it?

The caption thing says, "CELEBRATION SONG, Tim Steward, They will celebrate Your abundant goodness and joyfully sing Your righteousness. Psalm 145:7 NIV
The funny thing is that the day she gave it to me I had read that chapter of the Psalms in my devotions. I had struggled over it because here we all were at my grandfather's funeral and the Word was telling me to celebrate His abundant goodness and to joyfully sing of His righteousness and no one felt much like doing that. But that's just it. We have to CHOOSE to praise even when all the world around us may seem to be falling apart.

That chapter just before is David's cry to God for deliverence from his enemies. As I read these chapters that day in my devotions a thought struck me. Throughout the Psalms David cries out to God for deliverence from his enemies who were all around him and God wasn't always quick to answer. Psalm 22 opens by saying, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" That's just the opening. He goes on to list all the ways in which his life is miserable, but then the miracle takes place and he begins to declare the goodnesses of God. David acknowledges that God doesn't always seem to be around, BUT HE CHOOSES TO PRAISE HIM ANYWAY knowing that He is right there and deliverence is on its way. Deliverence doesn't come just when we ask for it. It comes when we stop looking at our problems and start praising God.

Romans 5:1-5 says that it's good to rejoice when we're going through easy things, but it's even better to rejoice during struggles. It is those struggles that will produces in us perseverence and then perseverence will produce character, and character will bring hope. That's why we rejoice in suffering. We know that when we rise above our circumstances and praise, we are being made stronger in Him. Plus it just blesses His socks off to hear our praise.

Wait... do you really think that God wears socks? I would think that when you have feet like "bronze glowing in a furnace," they wouldn't get cold. Hmmm... guess that phrase doesn't really work too well.

Well, anyway, I didn't mean to get all preachy at you. It's just that I'm trying to work that all out in my brain and the more I repeat it and talk about it, the better grasp of it I seem to have. This isn't the typical post for me. No pictures of Natalie or any funny anecdotes, but it's what came out, so enjoy!


  1. Wow, I am so impressed with your Miss Spider picture. I had no idea you could draw so well. Good job! And your sister's painting is amazing! What talent you girls have!

  2. She didn't actually paint that picture. Ha! I bet she wishes she did. She just got the framed print at the Christian Bookstore. I have seen her do paintings as good and better. Sorry if I sounded confusing.

  3. I love the Miss Spider picture! I'm sure Natalie wa thrilled when she saw it!!! Your words were beautiful, and never apologize for being preachy at us...I can always use a good uplifting word like that! Love you lots!!! :)


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