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Sisters

May 31, 2018

A recent commission.  There are still times I struggle with freely following my intuition and freedom with a piece I am asked to do, especially with things I haven’t painted before.  I get hung up in details and what a photo looks like.  My lack of training and experience tries to trip me up with insecurities.  Fear and insecurities are something I have battled in many ways for many years.  I have conquered it in many areas but still struggle in a few.  I am reminded, Proverbs 29:25 It is dangerous to be concerned with what others think of you, but if you trust the Lord, you are safe.  Knowing who I am in Christ and that who I am to Him, is all that really matters,IMG-6501 and this truth helps what remains fade away, and I am confident that He who began a work in me will carry it through to completion.  I really liked this article. https://biblereasons.com/caring-what-others-think/

 

 

 

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Unity

March 22, 2018

What do you think about when you see a church or think of church?  I think about all the different parts of the body working together for the same purpose.  I think of caring, humility, walking together, being held accountable, surrender, love and edification.

Ephesians 4:11-15

And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.  Rather, speaking the truth in love, w are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ.

“Unity” (Acrylic on Canvas)

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Take Up Your Cross Daily

January 30, 2018

Thank you for asking me to do this painting Kenny.  I really enjoyed it!

30×40 Acrylic On Canvas

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Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself (turn from our selfish ways), take up your cross and follow Me.

Matthew 10:38 And he who does not take up his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.

Jesus demands total commitment, even unto physical death.  Right where we are…full surrender to the message we are commanded to proclaim to others.  Not just in speech but how we live even, and perhaps especially, when no one is looking.  It’s doesn’t always look like it should, but striving for truth and conforming your life to it matters.  The process might be slower than you like, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

Luke 14:28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?

Jesus set the cost of discipleship as high as possible.  Encouraging us to do a careful inventory before declaring our willingness to follow.

I have to admit, I was completely unaware of this.  My first taste of Jesus was hell, and I all I knew was that I didn’t want to go there.  For a very long time I knew a lot more about hell than I did Christ.  Even once it all began falling in place, I still didn’t grasp the love of the Father (I still don’t fully and won’t this side of heaven) His plan of redemption, flowing from a holy, perfect, incomprehensible love.  The cost is high, every day, every moment is writing a story in eternity.  Only what glorifies Him will remain…the rest burned away as useless (these are the things we do for the flesh, earthly things) we all fall far short of doing it well.  Nothing good is in us, of ourselves, it is God working in us.

Hebrews 3:14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end.

Matthew 24:13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

God secures our perseverance as part of His saving work, it’s not of ourselves, and we cannot persevere if we don’t acknowledge the cost.  May we stand firm upon the Rock.  Shod with the full armor of God, fighting the good fight, fighting for your love to stay alive.  That it will not grow cold.

Matthew 24:12 (one of the scariest things imaginable) And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.

What does your “love” look like:  Is it to please people?  To avoid offending anyone with truth?  Is it compromised? Do you hide it in fear?  Do you withhold it in pain?  Or because they don’t deserve?  Or you don’t deserve?  Or you deserve better?

I know mine has looked like all of these at one point or another.  Still does in fact, for I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.  Romans 7:19

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Real love is sacrificial and flows from the well of living water.  We do not have anything in our flesh that can uphold this type of love.  It is Christ in us.

 

Smoky Mountains & Wedding Bouquets

September 20, 2017

A few stragglers that didn’t get posted…I painted this for Sean for Father’s Day of the Smoky Mountains in Asheville.  Photo creds to William “Marty” Clanton (my husbands cousin) whom I quite frankly did not realize had taken what I thought was just a hobby in photography and developed it into a business.  He has talent!  Check him out!

16×20 Acrylic on Canvas NOT AVAILABLE for purchaseimage1(3)

Flowers For Jenna 18×18 Acrylic on Canvas NOT AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASEFullSizeRender

Flowers For Liza (a first attempt at thick paint for my niece) 18×18 Acrylic on Canvas

NOT AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASEIMG_4967

Woodland Creatures Nursery Art

May 6, 2017

In His hand is the life of every creature…

Job 12:10

Something about Mr. Raccoon’s personality grabs me ❤ Thank you so much Laura!!

11×14 Acrylic on Canvas SOLD

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Christ – Resurrected King

April 25, 2017

I am by nature, an introvert, it doesn’t take much to make me feel awkward (bring out my inner dork I jokingly say) another stab at trying to brush off that paralyzing feeling. I read the quote “quiet people often have the loudest minds” some time ago and I find that to be absolutely true of myself. When the pastor of my church approached me regarding these paintings (live audience) my flesh cringed while my soul whispered “it is for my glory” so with terror and sweating palms I said yes “but only because it’s about the message not the painting itself”.

It has been my prayer for some time now to live my faith out loud rather than continuing to internalize, something I tend to do with everything.  To LET my light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven (Matthew 5:16).  For a city set on a hill cannot be hid (Matthew 5:14).  Specifically for my husband and children that it may flow out of my heart to share His grace and love with anyone who may cross my path. This is often where I fail first, as it is easier to get annoyed and frustrated and/or hurt by those who are closest to us.  It requires a lot more sacrifice that I have to admit I am not often willing to immediately put my pride aside to do. It’s only after prayer and reflection upon conviction that I even see it at times.  We can measure the progress of our Christian life by how well we relate to our parents, our spouse, or our employer. If we were to base our spiritual progress on how well you lived it out at home, how do you think you are doing?” – JD Greer. Let us examine our ways and test them and let us return to the Lord (Lamentations 3:40). For it is of the LORD’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness (Lamentations 3:22-23).  Our closest relationships reveal our deepest heart issues, sin and need for a Savior.

God requires perfection and there is but One who meets this standard.  It is only by the blood of Jesus Christ who while we were yet still sinners loved us (Romans 5:8), to the point of death, even death on a cross (Philippians 2:8), the author and perfector of our faith (Hebrews 12:2), who loves us with an everlasting love (Jeramiah 31:3), not because we loved Him, but because He loved us (1 John 4:10).

One who’s only accusation was “Jesus of Nazareth, The King of the Jews”

As Jill Briscoe says “obedience first, then the courage” so without the courage, without the experience, I went where I was sent and gave what I had, the only thought I would allow, a prayer “Lord work through me, be my strength, still my quivering hands and quiet my terror, move me out of the way”. Taking a leap outside my comfort zone, it is only by His gift of the talent he wove into my innermost being and His Grace and Love for me that such a thing could have ever taken place.  To God be the glory forever and ever Amen!

Resurrected King 30×40 Acrylic on Canvas – First Service (Top) Second Service (Bottom)

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To be completely honest, I have battled all week if I should share this or not.  My fears and insecurities raged all week long.  Fears of people who will think this was a very odd thing to do, judgement, seeking praise, you name it, it has gone through my mind.  I have struggled in many, many areas and have felt firmly buckled in my seat of the struggle bus.  It has felt like Satan has attacked me with every noise and obstacle there could nearly be.  Sometime in the middle of this past Sunday night I came to peace with it all and I said “Satan you will not win, you have already lost” so I continue in this race of life for the only purpose we are created for…to bring Glory to the One who made me in all my messiness and sin.  Who loves me despite it all!!

Transformed people use their same gifts for Gods purpose! – Kenny Hibbard

The message – The Faces of the Cross http://teamchurch.com/message.aspx?parentnavigationid=43217&messageGuid=fdc01c21-da74-4a4b-86ab-71b6cdd5babd

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Llama Love, Bold As a Llama- Full Photo

February 12, 2017

Possibly the most fun painting I have done, not to mention special!  So excited to reveal my sisters painting for her baby boy at her shower today.

Each painting has significant meaning deep in my soul.  I found this article on “Bold as a llama”  Deeper Christian

Careful. They spit.

Llamas: A rather odd looking pack animal (related to the camel) found in the Andes. These sociable creatures not only have great woolly fleece, they also make excellent watch dogs … err … llamas. I once asked a farmer who had a flock of sheep why he also had a llama in the field. I thought perhaps it was so he had access to unlimited fleece jackets or because he had a childish fetish with The Emperors New Groove. But what he told me surprised me.

“It acts as my watchdog.”

Apparently llamas are highly protective and if an intruder (think foxes and coyotes and bears, oh my!) come within the field, they will put up a fight, try to stomp on the intruder’s head, and run it off. Though usually calm, humble, and benign, they can quickly become bold, daring, and audacious.

I came across a quote the other day that reminded me of these long-necked woolly creatures. AW Tozer said:

Christians should be the boldest people in the world – not cocky and sure of ourselves, but sure of Him.

Okay I agree that the llama illustration is not perfect, but our lives as Christians should be known for humility, gentleness, and peace – no matter the situation we find ourself in. We are not called to be doormats, but we are called to serve, spill, and spend our lives for King and Kingdom. Yet, what if we were also as a bold as a llama? There IS a gentle, meek, and mild side of Christianity … but we are also called to stand for Truth, be willing to lay down our lives, live without any fear or worry, suffer with a smile on our face, and yes, even chase off the wolves that sneak in wearing sheepish outfits.

So may we pray the prayer that Oswald Chambers prayed as a teenager: “Oh God bathe us in humility.” But let us also pray that God would strengthen and embolden us to be the Joshuas, Elijahs, and Pauls who were strong in battle, stood for Truth, and found their position not in themselves but in God, whom they believed would show Himself valiant through their lives.

I pray for all that God has in His will for this special little one, for he is a gift from God.  Love you so much Lauren, Chad and Alaina!!

20″x36″ Acrylic on Canvas NOT FOR SALE

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Hoping to get a clearer photo with the good lighting in her room once it is hung.