Bible Journaling

Creative Retreat Kits | Who I Am In Him

Ladies, I will fully admit that when I picked up Lisa’s devotion for this month’s Faith Art Box, I think I made an audible “ugh”. The Proverbs 31 woman. If you’ve spent a good amount of time in church or reading Christian books, you’ve definitely come in contact with the virtues of the Proverbs 31 woman. And likely been told that it is a measure for you to strive for as a wife, mother, and woman.

Like Lisa, I was not thrilled at the prospect of trying to fill the shoes of this woman, who gets up with the sun and goes down after the moon. Who is busy at work for her family, cleaning, shopping, preparing, dressing, and caring for everyone. All, while being a woman of honor, respect, beauty… and joy. That’s right… JOY. Not only does she do allllll the things well. She does them with joy. Sometimes I do feel like I can do all the things, but with joy? Questionable, at best.

But Lisa opened up my eyes to so many things when I dug deeper into this chapter of Proverbs. First, nowhere does it say, “girl, you need to be all of this, and more”. It is simply the description of a woman who is living and serving well – who has her priorities straight, who invests her time and energy in the right places. She was designed specifically for this life that she lives, just as God has designed us specifically for the life he has for us. And a life designed by God will look completely different from house to house, woman to woman.

There is so much in Proverbs 31 but we also have to take into account what isn’t there. In biblical times, women didn’t work out of the home. They also lived in very tightly knit communities and families. Women had HELP in the form of friends, family, neighbors and the community. This was not a woman going it alone. We, so often, directly or indirectly isolate ourselves and think that we are expected to do everything, alone. I can tell you, that is not how God intended us to live this life.

Above all, the Proverbs 31 woman LOVES and OBEYS her Lord God. God is first in her life… above her husband, whom she respects and honors, above her children who she clothes, feeds and cares for, above her home, which she makes comfortable and presentable. God first. And, of all of her notable and desirable qualities, her love and respect for her Lord rank highest v.31. I have no doubt that this woman of strong faith leaned on God more often than not, in order that she might be able to do all of the things this chapter describes. She found her identity in Him first, not in the works of her hands.

For this month’s entry, I wanted to have a significant place to write a lot of notes. I decided on making a pocket of out a piece of the devotional card. First I cut out, scored and folded the pocket together (using my tag as a guide to make sure I got the right sizing).

I taped down the pocket edges using super-strong double-sided tape. I added the Identity in Christ title with the stickers and wordfetti in the kit and finished it off with a bit of coordinating striped washi tape from my stash. I loved the look of the pocket with the accent bow so I tucked that in as well.

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The top of the page felt blank to me so I buffed in a little bit of Creative Retreat’s new pigment inks into the top of the page (I used Mermaid Teal and Bonsai). Next, I stamped in His Beloved and used white embossing powder to make it pop. I added the little I AM sticker as well and buffed the edges with a little more of the ink. Next, I wrote in some of the qualities found in the Proverbs 31 woman using a green pen. Lastly, I hit it with a little bit of dark teal watercolor splatters, and added a bit more of the striped washi.

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I used a little bit more of the splattering watercolor to highlight my Proverbs 31 header (The Woman Who Fears The Lord). When it dried, I added in the heart sticker for an extra highlight.

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I went to work on my journaling card next. I added the title Live with Purpose at the top. Next, I went verse by verse and summarized the best qualities described, using the fun wordfetti from the kit for keywords.

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I finished off the card with a bit of delicate polka dot lace ribbon. I love this card and all the sweet reminders.

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This page got a little more busy than I wanted, but I still like it. This entry was actually worked on over the course of a couple of days. I really took a long time to process the devotional material. It was really powerful!

Friends, my prayer for you is that you don’t look at the Proverbs 31 as an impossible measure of perfection, but instead be inspired by a woman who loved her Lord with her heart, soul, mind and strength. Through God, all things are possible… and he will love you and treasure you no matter if you do all the things, or simply rest in him.

Need creative inspiration? Follow @creativeretreat on Instagram and follow the hashtag #creativeretreatkits. Please, be my friend! Find me @bibleartgal.

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Bible Journaling

Creative Retreat Kits | The Word Reveals

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“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”

Psalm 119:105

I’m not much of a hiker (a fact I think I’ve shared on the blog before) but I do love the outdoors. I also love to walk so you would think that hiking would just work for me? There are just so many complications with hiking that sort of intimidate me – knowing exactly where you are going and where you are at, strength, endurance, surefootedness… all things that I sort of lack. But because I do love the outdoors and connecting with God and his creation, I press on and pursue hiking.

I recall one particular solo hiking adventure I decided to take many years back. It was a trail recommended by an acquaintance that boasted incredible panoramic views, majestic waterfalls, amazing wildlife and more. I was told that I just needed to drive up to the trailhead in the Sierras and head out. It was easy peasy. But what followed were several hours of confusion, wandering and sometimes all-out panic. Because of a particularly rainy and snowy season prior the trail had become overgrown. The path was not clear. It would disappear and reappear, but not frequently enough for my comfort. I knew that getting lost in the mountains was not good for someone like me. Instead of enjoying the hike, I was in a state of stress and anxiety. I don’t recall the panoramic views, nor any majestic waterfalls. I don’t recall a single squirrel or bird or anything living except for the heart inside my chest, racing.

I ended up turning back early and just about running back to my car and to the trailhead. I told the acquaintance about the hike later. He was eager to know if I enjoyed it and what I thought of the waterfalls. I relayed my story and he just looked at me with mouth wide open and said simply, “you missed it!”

I was recently reading Psalm 119 when my eyes ran across verse 105 (“thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path”) and I thought of this particular hiking adventure. The path was not clear. I needed a guide. I’m so thankful that the Word of God provides a path for us. In fact, Psalm 119 is chock full of affirmations about the Word… it is a giver of life, it is broad, it is sweet and affirming, it is a light and guide, a hope and a shield. I don’t know about you, but I don’t know of any better guide than that.

We get so busy in this life focused on what is going wrong, on what has led us astray, on what is vague and confusing, not realizing that the God of the earth and of our hearts is right next to us, asking us to let Him be our guide. He provides that guidance in His presence and in His word. It’s not just another book, friends. It is THE BOOK!

That acquaintance was right in the end, with regards to my hike… I missed it. I missed all the potential beauty in that trail because I was so fixed on where I thought I needed to be going, on the path that I couldn’t see clear enough, and on my own fear and anxiety. I needed something to hold fast to, not realizing my Savior is the only thing I need to hold on to and his word is the ultimate guide. Had I stuck with the trail, in fact, if I had even been within 50 feet of it, I would have seen the majestic waterfalls, the eagles that nest there in the spring, the fields of wildflowers. I missed it all.

The devotional content in this kit has been so powerful. I do hope you have picked it up and are digging in.

For this entry, I dove into Psalm 119 a little deeper. For the creative part, I started by stamping that sweet little cluster of books in the lower left of the margin.

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After it dried, I went in with some watercolors to paint in the spines of the books with coordinating colors to this month’s kit. I then continued those colors into a sort of soft, watery “path” that went up and winded around the scriptures I highlighted/boxed.

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After it dried I went in with almost all of the heart stickers from the kit, as well as some hearts that I cut out by hand from the text scrapbooking paper I used in my last entry for the kit. I then used the alphas and wordfetti to spell out my title – Hold Fast to Every Word, Verse, Passage and the little subtitle at the bottom – Every Word Inspired.

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I wanted the page to have a bit of “sparkle” so I went in with a pen, after tracing all the letters and stickers, I added some little stars and then hit the page with little black splatters. It wasn’t fully dry so I had some bleeding, but it didn’t bother me. I liked that the path wasn’t exact and perfect… much like the path in this life. 🙂

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Friends, my prayer for you is that you lean on the Lord and allow his Word to guide your path. Every word, verse, and passage of scripture is God-breathed and true. There is nothing more solid that can guide your life. Let the Word guide you and let the Lord love you.

Want to see other ways to use products from the Creative Retreat kits? Follow @creativeretreat on Instagram and follow the hashtag #creativeretreatkits to see how others are using them! And please check out my Insta account @bibleartgal while you’re there.

 

Bible Journaling

Creative Retreat Kits | Written on My Heart

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“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

-2 Timothy 3:16-17

Does anyone else still get excited to receive mail, like I do? I don’t mean the piles of junk mail, credit card offers and stacks of coupons. I mean real, actual mail from one person to another? There is nothing quite like receiving a hand-written letter or card. This time of year, when sparky Christmas cards fill our box, my heart just about overflows.

A hand-written note or letter tells you that you matter. It tells you that you are worth spending the time to connect with. It shows that you are remembered. It tells you that you are loved and important enough to share in what is contained in that envelope or package. It takes thought and effort to send real mail… to write a real letter.

Did you know that the Bible is basically God’s letter, to us? He loves and cares so very much for us that he wants to connect with us through his word. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that Scripture is God-breathed. It goes on to tell us how very useful and important it is in our lives. The Bible is not only here to encourage, inspire and guide us, but it’s also here to correct our paths, to train us and to prepare us for whatever comes before us. That is one POWERFUL letter. Let’s not take it for granted!

The December Faith Art box provides all the beautiful tools to celebrate the word of God. The colors are beautiful soft jewel tones and are so pretty when combined. When I think of God’s word, I think of His heart for me and my heart for him so I wanted to be sure to use a big heart in my entry.

I started by using the ink smooshing technique to smoosh in about 5 or 6 colors of Distress Oxide Inks. It was a lot of different colors but I love how these just blended and flowed into each other. After that dried, I started my title with the wordfetti and alpha stickers from the kit spelling out “His Word is Written…”

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I wanted to be sure to get some stamping in so I grabbed the various word stamps from the kit and stamped them in flowing blocks with Brilliance Moonlight White pigment ink. I started with the phrase “On My” repeated over and over. Then, I finished with some other phrases repeated about the word.

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Next came my super fun heart. I used a heart punch to punch out a heart from some paper that has a bunch of text on it. I then glued it to three layers of pink tissue paper. I rough cut around it, leaving about a half an inch of tissue all the way around. Next, I used my fringe scissors to cut all the way around and make this delicate fringe border.

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I secured that to my page and added a few heart stickers on top. I finished off my page by tracing my stickers and my heart with a black journaling pen, using some “stitch” marks around my verse as well.

I finished with a little cluster at the top of my page that consist of a circle punched out of the devotional card, a few stickers, a heart from the same scrapbook paper, all secured with a bit of the silver feather washi tape from the kit.

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Friends, my prayer for you is that you spend the time to read God’s letter to you. I pray that his words wash over your heart and bring you comfort, guidance, wisdom and truth. Let his Word guide you and reveal his plans for you. You are so very dear and loved.

Want to see how others are using the December Faith Art box? Follow @creativeretreat on Instagram and follow the hashtag #creativeretreatkits. Please, be my friend! Find me @bibleartgal.