When a door closes the hope is that a window might open elsewhere. That is what I am looking forward to for the future. Today was the last day for an open studio class I have held on Tuesday's for the past couple of years. I know that I am a much better painter after my time spent with these students and it is my hope that they feel the same way about their own experience. Just like how "the old church choir is singing in my soul"(Zach Williams), I hope the students have a strong base to take with them as they continue to paint and grow as artists on their own, with the basic elements of painting "singing in their soul". And find joy in their journey.
"Now when I went to Troas to preach the gospel of Christ and found that the Lord had opened a door for me,..." 2 Corinthians 2:12
Some things that happen here on earth are not explainable, incomprehensible, unclear, out of focus, blurred. Tragedies that we just cannot wrap our minds around. There will be a day when we will understand, but it will not be on earth. My heart weeps for the Florida families that lost their children yesterday, and for the troubled young man who took their lives.
"For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim[blurred] reflection, but then [when perfection comes] we shall see in reality and face to face! Now I know in part (imperfectly), but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly,..." 1 Corinthians 13:12
Daily Glory Glimpses go to www.janefnewman.com
We witnessed the miracle of Lazarus at church this past Sunday. One of our own who has been seriously ill for several weeks, so ill that many times he was thought not to see the next day. To the joy and amazement of our little congregation, he came rolling in the narthex door and down the isle a little ways to be in worship again. We have missed him so. He usually sings in the choir and quite frequently blesses us with a solo. This Sunday though, it was music to our ears just to hear his meek but present voice expressing his gratitude for our prayers on his behalf. And that is what our congregation has done when we didn’t know what else to do. We wrapped him in the “strips of linen” that are our prayers. Prayers that God’s Love would wrap around him for Peace, Healing, and Hope. His effort to be in worship on Sunday wrapped us all in the “strips of linen” that as believers, we are meant to experience as the body of Christ, our Church. Wesley Memorial UMC. HOPE Point.
"…Jesus called in a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’” John 11:43-44
(The drawing above was created by a 10yr old student during one of our lessons together. Yes, I said 10year old!)
Glimpses of Glory go to www.janefnewman.com to view work.
Today, January 6th, is the day the church celebrates Epiphany. The day the wisemen experienced the epiphany that the Messiah, the Savior had been born. They followed His star to find were He lay in a manger. They were "Star struck"! Amazed that the prophecies of old about the star that would be the sign of His coming and then again amazed when their long journey following that star brought them into the presence of the Holy One. After worshipping Him there they then shared their epiphany with others on their return journey, and the rest is His-story.
This Christmas I was amazed and star struck by being the recipient of one of five hand-made stars. Each unique in that they were created with various collected pieces of jewelry from mother, grandmothers, sisters, and aunts, but each the same in that they were created by the same loving hand with the same spirit of family community and bond, and of worshipping the same Lord and King that inspired their creation. What a special gift to share on this 2018 Epiphany Day!
"...Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him." Matthew 2:2
The fondest memory I will save from this 2017 Christmas was made at Walmart of all places, with an adorable 2nd grader who attends The Bethlehem Community Center in Alton Park. She had earned the equivalent of $85 over the past months by having good attendance, good behavior and good homework ethics at the Center’s after school enrichment program. The anticipation had been building for that exciting day when “The Beth Bus” would chauffeur she and her 30+ friends to their long awaited Christmas shopping outing at Walmart. Each child was greeted by an adult volunteer whose job for the morning was to help them spend their “pay check” on their heart’s desire this Christmas. My 2nd grader, thrilled to be allowed to push the cart, wanted to head straight for “Toy Land”, so off we zoomed. She filled her cart with dolls, accessories, stuffed pets, & art sets. We headed to the clothes and shoes and she found a purse, hair barrettes, boots, & an outfit. I asked her if she might be interested in getting any snacks for the bus ride back to The Beth, and her eyes lit-up even brighter than before and we were in pursuit of the snack aisle immediately. Silly enough to think she needed help making a choice on what she might enjoy munching on for fun, chips, candy, snack cakes, cheese crackers and the like were pointed out. But she knew exactly what she wanted as if it was all she came for that day. Marshmallows. Two bags of miniature marshmallows. It came time to take inventory of her selections and do some math to see how much the items in her cart added up to(which is no small feat for this art major!). It was obvious that we had gone over her limit, so it was time to make decisions on what to keep and what to put back on the shelf. She struggled letting go of a couple of items, but she was able to make up her mind on what she wanted the most after 7 or 8 calculations. The marshmallows were never included in the “iffy” category. They were going home with her if nothing else did. She really didn’t mind leaving any of the dolls, toys or personal items behind that she had been so excited to find when this adventure began. But those marshmallows were her prize. As we headed to the check-out lane, she let me push her cart as she skipped happily in front leading the way, with a bag of miniature marshmallows in each arm.
“And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3
Whether walking new roads or old dusty roads of the beaten path, be open to seeing with new eyes what the Great Adventurer might have in store along the journey. He will enlighten your world with a spectrum of colors.
"Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emma's...Then their eyes were opened and they recognized Him,..." Luke 24:13-33
Daily Glory Glimpes
Another passage we discussed at last month's bible journaling session at Wesley Memorial UMC using the same visual as my last post(earth or world), but positioned differently, was for Acts 17:6 "...These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also,...". God's Kingdom is upside down to this world's. Thank goodness!
Acts 17:6 "...These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also,...".
You are invited to join us every 2nd Tuesday of each month to worship in a creative way! 6:30-8pm at Wesley Memorial UMC.
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We do bible journaling together every 2nd Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm at Wesley Memorial UMC. In September we used the same visual of the "world" or earth in different ways for different scripture passages. One of those verses came from John 15:19, "If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you." Remember those words the next time you are not feeling loved, and also remember that its cool to God to be "out of this world"!
"If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you." John 15:19
Next time, same world visual, different verse...
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I had the privilege to work with a group of precious children last night at Christ United Methodist Church's LEAD program. Our art project for the evening was making prints of leaves using brayers, block printing ink and ziplock bags. To begin the project I posed the question, "Do you know who my favorite artist of ALL time is? He has impeccable natural Design skills, is the Master of color usage, and creates the most breathtaking scenes of artistry." God. As we enter into what is my favorite season, Autumn, look around and experience the artistry of THE Original Artist. Bet you'll catch a glimpse of His Glory! And He will take your breath away.
"In the beginning, God created..." Genesis 1:1
Daily Glory Glimpses Blog; www.janefnewman.com
I see glimpses of His Glory every Sunday morning listening to the message delivered in worship through my pastor, Reverend Clair Sauer. She has the gift for sharing the Good News in a way that keeps our congregation not only interested, but also involved by commissioning us to leave our sanctuary with a mission for the days and weeks ahead. That mission usually requires shoes made for walking The Walk. "As it is written...", her feet are beautiful.
"And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, 'How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!' " Romans 10:15
Daily Glimpses of Glory, www.janefnewman.com