Thursday, October 22, 2009

Elisabeth Elliot

"I'm old fashioned, and I don't mind it."  That's from an Andy Williams song I used to hear as a little girl.  But it's true, I am old fashioned in many ways.  A woman who has mentored me from afar is Elisabeth Elliot, through her radio show (no longer aired) and through her devotionals and books.  Many Christian women today would likely find her advice and way of seeing things to be 'old fashioned', but I find her full of grace and truth.  Today I've been so inspired by a few of my very favorite teachers.  More on that later, perhaps.  But among them was Elliot's devotion of the day, which can be found online.  It hit me right up side the head. It nicely complimented the excellent message on Revelation 3 given at Harvest Bible Chapel by James MacDonald this past Sunday, that I listened to earlier while slicing apples for the dehydrator.  (I think that was a run on sentence!)  The letter to the church at Sardis is a confrontation of a church that has a reputation for being 'alive' but in actuality is quite dead in Jesus' estimation.  I can sadly relate to that in many ways.  It's an important message....but anyway, I am going to post Elisabeth's devotional so I can read it again when needed and perhaps it will touch someone else where they need it too.

Title: Be Honest With GodAuthor: Elisabeth Elliot
Since God knows our thoughts even before we think them, isn't it absurd of us to hesitate to tell Him the straight truth about ourselves? When we feel we ought to try to cover our spiritual nakedness it is good for us to open up Psalm 139: "O Lord, you have searched me and you know me.... You perceive my thoughts from afar.... You are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.... You created my inmost being" (Psalm 139:1-4,13, NIV).
There are times when I hesitate even to pray, knowing how far short I fall from God's standard.
George MacDonald writes:
"If I felt my heart as hard as a stone; if I did not love God, or man, or woman, or little child, I would yet say to God in my heart, 'O God, see how I trust Thee, because Thou art perfect, and not changeable like me. I do not love Thee. I love nobody. I am not even sorry for it. Thou seest how much I need Thee to come close to me, to put Thy arm round me, to say to me, MY CHILD: for the worse my state, the greater my need of my Father who loves me. Come to me, and my day will dawn; my love will come back, and, oh! how I shall love Thee, my God! and know that my love is Thy love, my blessedness Thy being.'"
We may pray the prayer that closes Psalm 139: "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting" (Psalm 139:23-24, NIV).
"Be persuaded, timid soul," writes Archbishop Fenelon, in his SPIRITUAL LETTERS TO WOMEN, "that He has loved you too much to cease loving you."

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Paper Doll Dress for the Grand-darling.

I spent all day yesterday creating this cutest of the cute little girl dresses.  Can't wait to see our grand-darling in it. That's all for today!  ;o) 

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Nature Journaling

I have always loved the outdoors, nature and sketching. And I've always desired to keep a nature journal in a consistent way, but I've not lived up to that desire. During the summer I borrowed about a dozen books on the subjects of sketching, watercolor, and nature journaling and thoroughly inspired myself. I got out all my art supplies, created a 'kit'. And then struggled in actually doing as much sketching as I hoped to. Then this week the Canson sketch book I've been adding to (slowly!) over the past several years was drenched in my back back by a leaky water bottle. It's a soggy, rumpled mess. I had lots of pressed flowers and leaves in it that are probably hopelessly ruined. (sob!) As well as the Elk sketch from my last post. Very sad.

HOWEVER, this loss finally 'freed' me to start sketching in a lovely new moleskin art journal I'd purchased from Amazon. I couldn't justify using it, while I still had so many empty pages in my Canson. I pulled out my copy of 'The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady' for inspiration, and decided I'm going to use my moleskin in the same way. In 'Country Diary' (an out of print reproduction of Edith Holden's actual nature journal) Edith chronicles the changes of the seasons, month by month, through beautiful botanical sketches, quotes and journal writings. She includes lots of lovely drawings of the birds and other fauna from her English countryside home.

So here is my first page for the month of October in my Nature Journal. It will be interesting to see what I can find here in the Sonoran desert to sketch that might capture the subtle signs of autumn.  (Locals often say that Phoenix has 2 seasons, spring and summer) Hopefully I'll be able to get up North and journal the fall foliage before it's gone. I did salvage the colored pencil and ink maple leaf I drew at Lost Canyon on Oct. 3. I pasted it to the left of this page. It's on my flickr stream as are some other sketches and all my nature photography.

The goal is to do at least 4 pages per month, which will work out to 1 per week, hopefully. ;o)