I thank the LORD JESUS for each day that is given me to create wonderful projects...As always, I give Him all the glory.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Scripture Series: Look Unto the Lord Card---Come and Join Us for an Anything/Inspirational Challenge at Word Art Wednesday!

It's another Crafty Wednesday here in my neck of the woods.  From a warm, sunny day the past several days, we are back to a chilly day.  But all is good because no matter how each day turn out, each day reminds us of God's faithfulness.  That He is not done with this world and each one has a chance to get to know Him as their own personal Savior.  Like Noah's ark, there's a time for building and construction where repentance is proclaimed and the only ticket to one's salvation (when the great flood comes) is faith.  The people during that time hadn't seen a drop of rain and so, it was very hard for them to believe that a rain, much so---a flood, will ever take place.  The Bible said they continued on with their usual routine and practices, without much regard to the prophetic warning that came in their midst.   Matthew 24:37-39 states, "As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark;  and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man."  You see, right at this very moment, we are under the period of grace where everyone is invited to repent from their sins and put their faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ.  Contrary to how the Jews perceived their King was going to come, Jesus came as a humble servant who gave His life for the sake of mankind as a ransom for the forgiveness of sin and restore them to the righteousness of God.  The Jews rejected Jesus because He failed, in their eyes, to do what they expected their Messiah to do—destroy evil and all their enemies and establish an eternal kingdom with Israel as the preeminent nation in the world. The prophecies in Isaiah and Psalm 22 describe a suffering Messiah who would be persecuted and killed, but the Jews chose to focus instead on those prophecies that discuss His glorious victories, not His crucifixion.  You can read more about this HERE.  Yet the Day of the Lord (Second Coming of Jesus Christ) will surely come as a fulfillment of the Gospel.  But before that, everyone that boarded the ark of safety (placed their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and accepted His gift of salvation) had sailed away to safety from the flood (judgment of our day).  The Bible talks about the "catching away" (much known to all believers as "Rapture" of the Church) which is an event in which God removes all believers from the earth in order to make way for His righteous judgment to be poured out on the earth during the Tribulation period. The rapture is described primarily in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:50-54. God will resurrect all believers who have died, give them glorified bodies, and take them from the earth, along with those believers who are still alive and who will at that time also be given glorified bodies. “For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).  If we are wise, we know that we need to get in the ark of safety through the saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ before it closes on us.  Judgment will come (His Second Coming, the Day of the Lord) and after all the sacrifice He made when He first came that is made available to all of us each day, all that's left is judgment.  He will be all that the scripture said He would be (Rule the Nations with Truth and Justice) and not one arrogant, proud and lovers of sin will reign in His Kingdom.  Realizing this, we (believers) need to tell everyone about the salvation that we received from Jesus Christ.  We will be ridiculed, called every kind of hurtful names (bigots, fanatics, hypocrites) and cursed at.   We will be deemed crazy and be disowned, not just by strangers but our very own family and friends, yet we must persevere knowing of the greater Truth that lies in our eternal future.  If we truly love, we will tell everyone of the Truth in love (yes, even if it hurts their feelings) for their eternal destination will depend upon their decisions while on earth.  Though people may not see it now (like the flood in Noah's time), they will thank you for holding your ground and  not giving up on them when the time comes.  For those who have not received Christ as their personal Lord and Savior that reads this message, there's a reason why you came here.  God wants you to know that He loves you and wants you to be safe in His arms.  He wants you to fulfill the true purpose that He has built within you when He created you.  Right now, it's marred by sin and it kept you from having a relationship with Him.  Consider Jesus and take the first step by calling on Him today.  Jesus said in John 6:37,  "All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away."  By yourself, you will never be able to clean up your act so, don't even bother to try it.  Come as you are to the Lord and He will be the One to bring about a change in your life through the power of the Holy Spirit.  That way, He gets all the glory and honor!

Oh wow, I surely had a certain message in mind but God led me to go a different direction.  And that's perfectly alright because I am here to speak of the will of my Father in Heaven.  God's heart is love and compassion and He does not want anyone to perish.  It's made clear to us in 2 Peter 3:8-9, "But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." But make no mistake about it.  God is also a righteous Judge who will bring judgment to everyone who followed the ways of their father (Satan) and live according to their fleshly desires.  These are people who are unrepentant, cold-heart-ed, lovers of sin and haters of God.  Those who despite the many opportunities to come under the saving knowledge of Jesus, have chosen to trample on Him and have encouraged others to do so.  There will be no mercy left for them if they die in that spiritual state and they will live eternally outside of the presence of God (absence of every kind of good things).  Read God's Word and you will not be left out in the cold! (Or should I say "Hell")

Anyway, we have a wonderful Word Art (by Karen Murray) you can download for free which we highlighted in today's Challenge at Word Art Wednesday (WAW) It features the scriptures in Micah 7:7, "Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me."  This is a very timely verse in my life right now as clouds of uncertainties have tried  to put me down these days.  It's easy to quote verses to those in need but to hold onto it as you go about difficult circumstances in your own life brings it to a greater level.  It's believing (trusting, clinging, adhering, to stick onto) in the love and faithfulness of God and the fact that He always backs His Word when all  things that are happening around  us suggest the opposite.  It is looking beyond the veil and knowing that a greater blessing is waiting behind it.  That means going against the dictates of my mind, will and emotions (feelings).  I  am not new in this battle but I am certainly not a pro.  Each encounter, I have to look at the finished work of Jesus Christ, apply His victory in my life and allow the Holy Spirit to work in me.  It's not fun at all but I would say, there is no other choice. Jesus is the Only Source of my victory.  I cry oftentimes and pour my heart to God and many times, I don't even know what to say.  But I have experienced His love and I know I am not alone.  He hears every cry and in my uncertainties, He gives me the assurance of His Word.  I may be in a difficult situation at the moment but I know that one day, I will see this as just part of the many challenges that God had delivered me from and yes, I will bring honor and praise to Him for.  As the prophet Micah unfolded the horrible fate of the Jews in his time because of their sins, he know where his faith lies and can boldly declare God's Word.

For this Card, I used a very cute image from Time for Tea called "Geeky Girl" which I colored with my ProMarker/Prismacolor markers.  I've been wanting to buy some images but budget is too tight.  A few days ago, I saw that the digis are discounted and was able to buy a few.  Oh, thanking the Lord for it!  I don't think I would like her to look Geeky so I made her trendy instead.  I love it!  Anyway, the base card is Kraft, cut and scored to make a 5.5-inches square card.  All the DP's are from Paper Studio.  I stamped all over the panels using Tim Holtz clear stamps and the swirls from Inque clear stamps.  The butterflies were stamped and punched using an MS punch/stamp, glittered using Stickles (Crystal) and decorated white nail gems from Imaginisce.  I also applied some Glossy accents to the image's glasses as requested by my hubby and it looked great. I decided to make this a fun card hence it does not follow my traditional straight lines/design.  Lastly, I went crazy stitching all over this project.  Hope you love it!






This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Crafty Girls---ATG
Crafting with Dragonflies---Use a freebie (The sentiment freebie is HERE)
Creative Moments---ATG/Swirls and Pearls
Digistamps4Joy---Use Dies or Punches
Divas by Design---Make it Sparkle
Little Red Wagon---Yearning for Spring
Paper Shelter---Animal Magic
Penny's Paper-Crafty---Guys and Girls
Scrapper's Delights---Bling It Up
Simon Says Stamp---ATG with Pearls
Fantastic Tuesday---ATG
Top Tip Tuesday---Stitching
Tuesday Throwdown---ATG
Artistic Inspirations---For the Kids/ATG
Card Mania---Use a Sentiment
Craftin Desert Diva's---Glitters
Cutie Pie---Spots and Dots
Digi Sketch---ATG
Eureka Stamps---Add a Butterfly
Love to Create---ATG
Love to Scrap---ATG
Make It Monday---ATG
Make Something Monday---Stamping
My Craft Creations---ATG
Scrapbook Stamp Society---ATG/Option:Make Your Own Flowers

There you have it friends!  Hope you enjoyed browsing at the pics and reading this post.  Please don't forget to join us at this week's WAW Challenge by linking your "Anything Goes" projects.  You can use the free Word Art I featured here in your entry but it's not mandatory.  As long as your creation is family-friendly, inspirational and uplifting, you can enter up to 5 projects to have more chances of winning.  Our sponsors for this week are The Flying Unicorn (awesome prize), Classy Cards 'N Such ($15 GC) and Daydream Designs (3 digi sets) .  You don't want to miss out on these wonderful prizes so, make sure to join our Challenge.   Have a blessed day, everyone!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Scripture Series: Which Make for Peace Card---Join us for an Inspirational/Anything Goes Challenge at Word Art Wednesday!

Hey there, Crafty guys and gals!  It's Wednesday once again and that simply means we are having another wonderful Challenge at Word Art Wednesday (WAW). Every week, we are sharing with  you a free Word Art (by Karen Murray) you can download from WAW and you will see us highlight that particular scripture Word Art in our projects.  This week we spotlight on  Romans 14:19 which tells us, "Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another."  The context of this verse has something to do with food---what believers eat at the Church in Rome .  The Roman Church are diverse group of people which means they have Jews and Gentiles, free and slave, rich and poor, weak and strong among believers.  Through the Gospel (death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ), these people were reunited because of one common factor---that is faith in Jesus Christ alone!  Many times, because of their diversity, they clash on many cultural differences.  Whose way of life is better than the other---down to the very food they eat.  I know this too well because being raised in the Philippines and now, a citizen of the United States, I encountered many differences in the food I eat and those of my friends who were raised and lived here.  Although I would love to share with them some wonderful cooking, I have to consider what they may like and eat when I invite them to our home.  So far, they loved my "pancit" (fried noodles), "lumpia" (like spring rolls but with meat) and my "Tinolang manok" (chicken soup).  I have to make careful choices of ingredients for many of my friends were using chicken more than pork.  The truth is, Filipinos are big when it comes to using pork.  I basically grew up with it being in our table everyday.  I also cook and eat fish and shrimp with head on (at least, the way I would prefer it) but I understand that others may not like it that way.  The point of the highlighted verse is that we are not to pass judgment on anybody---what is clean and unclean, better of worse, good or bad when it comes to food and other cultural practices as laid out in the New Covenant (New Testament).  There is nothing wrong with the dietary laws in the Old Testament which was given to the Jews but we are not to impose it on others that didn't grow up under those laws.  There is nothing in what we physically eat or good works we practice that brings us in "right standing" (righteousness) with God.  Romans 1:16-17 clearly says, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”  We are saved and made righteous in the sight of God by placing our trust in what Jesus had done in the Cross---nothing else!  So, while I understand why some people may dislike what I like to eat, I don't take it against them.  I always tell people that if you grew up eating certain foods, you will learn to like them.  Meanwhile I don't force anybody to like what I like and I don't expect them to do the same thing to me.  The key here is "respecting others in love."  Like the old century Church, believers are told to strive for peace in ironing our differences in the many aspects of life.  Romans 12:3 says, "For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you." We are not to be legalistic on things that don't have a bearing on our salvation. Romans 14:16-18 declares, "Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval."  We are to be firm in standing against all kinds of sin in the scripture and we need to call them as such.  But using the scriptures to impose on someone else preference for food to the point of condemnation is not  a very wise thing to do.  Read the entirety of Romans 14 and you will be blessed.  We are to work in peace through love with fellow believers.  That way, the world will know that we are God's children.  Want to share with you some scripture that will bless you even more:

"If some unbeliever invites you to a meal and you want to go, eat whatever is put before you without raising questions of conscience. But if anyone says to you, "This has been offered in sacrifice," then do not eat it, both for the sake of the man who told you and for conscience' sake-- the other man's conscience, I mean, not yours. For why should my freedom be judged by another's conscience?  If I take part in the meal with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of something I thank God for? So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God--." (1 Corinthians 10:27-32)

"To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted." (Titus 1:15)

 "If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen." (1 Peter 4:11)

For my inspiration Card, I use a wonderful image from Sassy Cheryl Digital Stamps called "Pick a Card" and colored it with my ProMarker/Prismacolor/Chromatix markers.  The base is a white CS, cut and scored to create a 5.5" square card.  All the DP's and CS for matting came from my scraps (I simply cannot get rid of them...LOL).  I used my Cuttlebug and a Paper Studio embossing folder to emboss the main panel.  I added a bit of glitters (Stickles-Turquoise) and white opal Liquid Pearls to the image's clothing and headband.  I also wrote (freehand) the scribbles in the image's little sign in the bowl.   Lastly, I incorporated some regular and fancy stitching.  Loving this design and thanking God for the inspiration! 






 This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Crafting with Dragonflies---Use a Freebie (My sentiment is a freebie)
Penny's Paper Crafty---Lots of Layers
Rhedd and Rosie---Love is in the Air
Ruby's Texture---Rainbow
Scrapper's Delight---Love
Sisterhood of Crafters---Love is in the Air
Whimsy Stamps---Love is in the Air
Craft-Room Challenge---Color Challenge
Crafty Sentiments---ATG
Cuttin and Stampin---Spring is Here
Cuttlebug Mania---Let's Feel It
Deep Ocean---Love is all Around
Fan-Tastic Tuesday---Happy and Bright
Flourishes---A Lot of Polka Dots
Paperminutes---Decorate the Inside
Papertake Weekly---Lovely Layers
Sweet Stamps---ATG
Top Tip Tuesday---Stitching (Different stitches in a project adds wonderful dimension)
Try it on Tuesday---Handmade/Handwriting (I scribbled the sentiment in signage the image is holding)
Card Mania---Love is all Around
Craft Your Passion---Girly Girl
Love to Scrap---ATG
Make it Monday---ATG
My Craft Creations---ATG

This is all I got for now, folks!  Don't forget to stop by our WAW Blog to avail of the free scripture Word Art I shared here.  You can use it in your project and link it to our ongoing Challenge although it's not mandatory.  You can submit up to 5 projects as long as it's family friendly, inspirational or uplifting.  There's a couple of sponsors giving away wonderful prizes this week---Prairie Point Junction ($15 GC) and Digi Darla Designs (3 Digi Images).  I can't wait to see what you come up with.  Please remember that in this life, we are to give ample respect to others who may be different than us in the Body of Christ.  Let us continue to uphold the Truth of God's Word.  

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Doesn't Challenge/Change You Card---Come and Join the Fun of an Anything Goes Challenge in our neighborhood, 613 Avenue Create!

Hi there, fellow Crafters! It's Sunday once again and time for another Anything Goes Challenge with optional twist ( National RAK Day) in my neighborhood, 613 Avenue Create.  Before I discuss anything about my card, I would like to thank the Lord for a wonderful couple of days where I live...Love the bright, sun shiny days, blue skies and cool temperatures.  What a contrast from the many months of roller coaster weather mostly below freezing which is not so typical out here in Texas.  Heart's Day was a fun day for me as my 8-year old son took me out for a treat in his favorite place to eat---Chick-fil-a!  He proudly paid the $9 charge for our order using the money he saved.  I am blessed to have such a sweet, giving and loving boy.  Hubby had to work and my son wanted me to have some fun and I had a wonderful night, for sure!  I love my boy to pieces...

As I was getting my project ready for today, I came across the sentiment that I got for free from Create with TLC which says, "If it doesn't challenge you, it doesn't change you."  Not only was it perfect for the image I chose to use from one of our sponsors, Dr. Digi House of Stamps called "KO Kevin," but it provides a spiritual truth that  I want to convey in this post.  For most of us, we want our lives to go on as smoothly as possible.  We don't want to be confronted by challenges for underneath them are  situations filled with uncertainties, hardships, pain, worries, sadness and more.  Yet, it is in those times that we are confronted by the reality that we don't have all the answers and that without the grace of God, we are nothing.   It's in those times when we ask for the help of our Creator and learn to depend on Him for our daily provision and existence.  It's sad to admit but when we have plenty and enjoy all the things we desire, we tend to forget the very One who has given us all that great blessings.  When we get things free, we tend to take it for granted yet when we have to work hard for it and go through all kinds of obstacles to obtain what's important for us, we learn to treasure it.  I know the Lord wants to shower us with every great blessings yet what is most important to Him is the development of our character.  Romans 5:3-5 tell us, "Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us."  As we (believers) go through many trials, let us keep our focus unto the Lord.  We ought to depend on Him daily for He is our only hope.  As you overcome every challenge that confronts you in His power, you will realize that all the trials you've gone through affects your character and prepares you for a greater task and purpose He has for you.  Jesus is our greatest example.  He faithfully obeyed the Father---even to the point of death.  That is because He knew that there's a greater blessing waiting underneath the pain and suffering.  The Bible is clear on the inheritance of every believer who have placed their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  James 1:12 says, "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him."  As I go through the many challenges in life, it's crystal clear to me that I overcame and will continue to overcome!  It is not because of my own abilities but solely based on the power and strength of the Lord Jesus who lives inside of me.  Because of Him,  I can claim the victory!  Here are some verses you can meditate on in times of trials for His Word gives us hope:

"In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls." (1 Peter 1:6-9)

"Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." (Romans 8:17-18)

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.  And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,  because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?  If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons." (Hebrews 12:1-8)

So, for today's Challenge at 613 Avenue Create, I colored the image with my ProMarker/Prismacolor markers.  I used a Kraft CS for my base card, cut and scored to make a 5.5 " inches square card. All the DP's are from My Mind's Eye, the stamped numbers from Paper Studio and the nail head gems from Imaginisce.  Lastly, I stitched all over this card.  Hope you like it!






This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Lacy Sunshine---Lots of Layers
OSAAT---Use a Digi
Quirky Crafts---Pile It High!
Scribble and Scrap---ATG
Corrosive Challenges---In Stitches
A Little Bit of Crafty---Man Up!
Crafts Galore Encore---If You Bling You are In!
Crafty Hazelnut's---ATG using Patterned Papers
Doodle Pantry---Any Digi Goes
Just B Creative Crazy---ATG
One Crazy Stamper---ATG
Treasured Times---ATG with Layering
Color Me Creative---ATG
Digi Designs---Tic Tac Toe (I used Digi/Gems and Stitching)
Bloggers Challenge---2 or More Patterned Papers
Creative Fingers---ATG with Optional Twist/Love or More than One Layer
Pattie's Creations---Use Red in Creation
Quick Quotes---Ink It Up
Sister Act---ATG
Creative Romance---Let's Get Sentimental
Crafty Girls---ATG
Challenges 4 Everybody---ATG
Make It Monday---ATG
Create with TLC---Show It Off Sunday

There you have it, folks!  Don't miss the opportunity to join our Anything Goes Challenge at 613 Avenue Create.  There's wonderful prizes awaiting the winners from our lovely sponsors for this week---Dr. Digi House of Stamps, Art by Mi Ran and Fitztown.  Can't wait to see what fabulous projects you're going to highlight this week.  I hope you have a wonderful week filled with the divine inspiration of God's Word.  Hugs, always!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Scripture Series: They that Seek the Lord Card---Join us for an Inspirational/Anything Goes Challenge at Word Art Wednesday!

Hello everyone!  It's been a whole week since my last project and I'm just amazed at how time flew by too fast.  I also can't help but notice that the world is turning crazier each day.  I am having a difficult time looking for positive things to watch daily on TV, for example.  I would like to think that with the hundreds of programs available each day through the Cable,  it will be easy to find something with moral values.  But no, it's always been a challenge and so, I end up watching mostly  Christian programs and movies.  To hear people testifying on what the Lord has done in their lives surely encourages me and builds up my faith.  I rejoice with people who have allowed the Lord into their lives.  Most of them have followed their own destructive paths and almost lost their lives.  Yet, at the nick of time, they call on the name of the Lord in desperation!  At their rock bottom, they heard the Lord knocking at the door of their hearts.  They opened the door and allowed the Lord to come inside and rescue them.  Tears rolled down their faces as they recall that very special moment of their encounter with the Lord Jesus.  I love how one man said, "I could have been killed in the streets at the kind of life I was living but the grace of God preserved me and gave me another chance.  This great mercy that God had shown me compels me to love Him back.  His love compels me to love Him back!"  Wow!  I tell you, I felt every emotion from that man's testimony.  I may not have done anything close to what that man committed in his life yet, I too, have experienced rock bottom in a different way.   Due to many problems I've experienced with my family in my  younger days, my frustrations and hopelessness got the best of me!  Home was a chaos and I was not finding any sincere support from friends.  Not knowing my purpose and my future sent me to the pit of depression.  It's as if I am living in colorless world---everything has no meaning!  There's something inside of me that is craving to be filled yet no human being can satisfy.  I look for answers in all the wrong places through people and relationships and they all failed.  I had prayed to die (yes, I did!) so I can escape that lonely world!  I didn't know where I could find answers .  But one day, at the fulness of time, God met me!  One faithful night,  in the comforts of my home and a Christian TV program in whom the Gospel (death, burial, resurrection of Jesus Christ) was preached, I accepted Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior.  There was nobody there to persuade me, to cheer me up, to witness the cries of my spirit.  Yet I am certain of the presence of the Lord that took every bit of pain, heaviness and chains that kept me bound.  With just a prayer of faith and acceptance, I WAS MADE FREE!  This kind of freedom is unexplainable, as I felt a heavy load was taken of my chest and something in the atmosphere (in the spiritual realm) was forever changed.  And today, 24 years later, this   experience  comes back to me so often---as fresh as the day it happened.  What God has done for me that night compels me to love Him back.  He has turned my life around and no one can tell me that "God does not exist."  I've experienced His love and compassion that night and in all the years that passed,  He carried me through.  I serve a powerful, glorious, holy and magnificent True God who stands by His Word.  So, no matter what happens in here, my faith is secured in Him.  In Jesus Christ, I have a purpose in this lifetime as well as the eternal.  I need not be afraid for He is always right beside me.  I truly hope that anyone who is reading this message and have not encountered God in their lives would give the Lord a chance to prove Himself to them.   No matter how far you roamed, how deep the hole you dug for yourself, there is nowhere you can be that God will not be able to reach you.  He can pull you out of the deepest, darkest hole.  Just call unto Him with your whole heart! Like me and that man who have given his testimony---you'll find how the love of God would compel you to love Him back.  It's the only course of action after you experienced God's immeasurable love!  Sharing some verses that would tell you of God's love for you in Christ:

"I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep." (John 10:9-11)

"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

"See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears,we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin." (1 John 3:1-5)

Right now, I want to share with you my inspiration card for our Challenge at Word Art Wednesday (WAW).  It highlights the free Word Art (by Karen Murray) you can download at WAW site which comes from Psalm 34:10 which says, "The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing." The whole world was created by God and everything on it feeds from the abundance of what the Lord has given.  Yet, after the Fall of Man, we saw how death and many by-products of death have taken over. Man's (God-given) authority  has been handed down to Satan by Adam himself, through his disobedience.  Famine, hunger, sickness and diseases among many others ravaged man throughout his existence, including all of God's creation.  Though our situation and behaviors have changed, God remains the same!  He is still faithful and true and He has everything under His control.  We cannot undo the consequences of the sin that was passed along through Adam by our doing good works.  Unless we die in our old self (in Adam) and be born-again (in Christ), we are doomed!  When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord  and Savior and believed that His finished work on the Cross is sufficient to save us from sure death (spiritual, physical and eternal), we are born-again into God's family.  Our featured verse simply means that as we seek the Lord and depend on Him daily, He takes care of us.  He provides our every need, we are not lacking in any good thing.  We need to be careful in assuming that a "good thing" is always what we pray for especially when it comes to material things.  God knows what is good for us, we don't!  We can pray for our needs but we have to be confident that He takes care of every good thing we need even when our everyday situations seem to contradict it.  He tells us not to worry about anything for if He takes care of all His other creation, how much more can He not take care of us whom He loves?  God wants us to depend upon Him for everything---that means in time of need or plenty.  

For this Card, I used an image from Mo Manning called "Crafty Cat" and colored it with my ProMarker/Prismacolor/Chromatix markers.  The base card cut and scored to make a 5.5" inches square card.  The DP's and the CS are all from my scraps (what a way to use those left-overs).  I die cut the scallop circle using my Nestabilities and Cuttlebug.  The huge flowers are from Prima with a brad top from Heidi Grace.  I stamped some little hearts to the image from Studio G stamps and added some white nail head gems from Imaginisce.  Lastly, I did some fancy and regular stitching all over this card.  I love how the colors and design come together.  So happy with it!   






This Card is entered into the following Challenge:

DP2 Challenge---Favorite Creation of 2014

There you have it friends!  Hope you enjoyed browsing at the pics and reading this post.  Please don't forget to join us at this week's WAW Challenge by linking your "Anything Goes" projects.  You can use the free Word Art in your entry but it's not mandatory.  As long as your creation is family-friendly, inspirational and uplifting, you can enter up to 5 projects to have more chances of winning.  Our sponsors for this week are Shoppe 3130 (giving away some wool felt) and Iralamija Shop (giving away some digis).  You don't want to miss out on these wonderful prizes so, make sure to join our Challenge.   Have a blessed day, everyone!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Scripture Series: Fruit of the Spirit Card---Time for Another Inspirational/Anything Goes Challenge at Word Art Wednesday!

A wonderful Wednesday, everyone! I am thankful to the Lord today for providing me such relief from the environmental allergies that gives me discomfort in the ever changing weather out here in Texas.  For about 2 weeks now, I've been breathing well, though with the aid of a couple of allergy medicines (Thank God for medicines too!), I am appreciating everyday I am waking up with no congestion and frequent sneezing.  It is great to find blessings in our lives that for most of the time, we take for granted.  I have so much appreciation for breathing comfortably for I have been in a place for several years now (during allergy months) of not having the luxury to go to a doctor and have proper treatment for environmental factors that affected me.  I had many sleepless nights and tried to sleep sitting down because it was too hard to breathe.  I was dreading the changes in the weather knowing how it can affect me.  Finally, relief came and I have everything to be thankful for.  You see, there are many problems I have to face each day but then, I decided to not concentrate on them!  Instead, I focus on the victories the Lord blessed me with each day.  Over and over, He tells me not to worry about my circumstances yet there were times I would be so stubborn thinking of them.  I am so glad that the Lord is  ever so patient in my unbelief and that He wouldn't give up on me.  I remember a wonderful Pastor told us (in my Bible class) that trials come in different degrees or level.  There are some that does not take much to solve and those that requires more from us.  As I desire to serve the Lord Jesus more, trials never fail to come and they try to hinder me from ever fulfilling the purpose that God prepared for me.  I have seen many people who were so zealous in the ministry that the Lord gave them but in the event of many trials, they started pulling away.  I've learned that when the enemy tries to stop me from fulfilling God's work, the more I have to go against my feelings, condition and situation.  When I don't want to give to the work of God, the more I have to.  When I feel like skipping Church, the more I have to go---even if I drag myself in the process.  The more I feel like giving up, the more I have to fight against my own weakness.  If  it all depends on my own abilities and strengths, I would be long gone from the path the Lord has taken me.  But because He, who is inside of me, is greater than any demonic forces that seeks to pull me down, I can pull myself up and command my soul (consist of mind, will and emotions) to go against the suggestions of the enemy and my human nature (selfish desires) and to submit to the dictates of my spirit whose under God.  A Christian life is never without a battle!  Everyday in every situation, we need to decide! We can choose to follow the ways of the devil which leads to destruction or follow the righteous ways of the Lord which leads to holiness and eternal life.  I ask myself this, "Will I be willing to give up the eternal (without time, forever) life that Jesus won for me for a "momentary" (earthly life, temporary, a wink of an eye) existence here on earth.  And suddenly, I know what I needed to do!  It does help every believer of Jesus Christ to have an "ETERNAL PERSPECTIVE" in life when facing spiritual battles.  It will save us a load of troubles!  We are not to be strangers to the Word of God (the Bible) for in it is the written revelations of our Creator who gave us every instruction and solutions to every question we have in mind.  It contains our past, present and future and if you want to learn to value a life that comes after our final breath here on earth, we ought to spend time meditating on the Word of God!  This would require some spiritual disciplines (Meditation of the Word, Prayer, Fasting, Silence and Study).  Mastery of these five is not the source of our power as a believer.  Our only Source of power is found in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the Cross.  What these disciplines help us achieve is that they place us in a position that would separate us from the world (flesh) and go after the things of God.  We are to integrate these disciplines in our lives until it becomes a lifestyle.   Here's some verses I want to share with you that would help us persevere in our walk with God:

"Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him." (James 1:12)

"Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen." (2 Peter 3:17-18)

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed." (1 Peter 1:3-7)

Anyway, we have another Inspirational/Anything Goes Challenge happening at Word Art Wednesday (WAW).  We are highlighting a wonderful Word Art (by Karen Murray) which you can download for free at the WAW site.  It features the Word of God in Galatians 5:22-23 which says, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."  These are the characteristics that should be found in men and women that have been transformed by God through a Born-Again experience (John 3:3-7).  The Holy Spirit living inside of us equips us with these qualities (without Him, it's impossible for us to do it) and though it may seem like a challenge for us to develop some or all of the qualities,  He is not finished with us.  Everyday we live is a step in the right direction if we depend on the power of the Holy Spirit to keep us focus on the finished work of Jesus on the Cross,  As we keep our attention to Jesus Christ, the less and less we are to focus on ourselves.  That's how we become Christ-like!  Contrary to what the people of the world thinks---all of us (believers) are a work in progress.  Not one of us has gotten it altogether but when we finally come face to face with God, we'll see the fulness of our transformation in Him.   For my inspiration card today, I used an image from one of our sponsors, Robyn's Fetish.  it's called  "Crock Pot 'n Flowers" which I colored with my ProMarker/Prismacolor markers.  The base card is a white CS, cut and scored to make a 5.5-inches square card.  The DP's and colored CS are all from my scraps.  The lacy circle is cut with Nestabilities and added several metallic gems from Imaginisce.  I cut the Word Art into strips and matted it with a blue/gray CS.  Lastly, I did a load of stitching inside and outside of this card.  Love how it turned out.






This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Make it Monday---ATG
Challenges 4 Everybody---ATG
Inky Impressions---Someone Special
Rhedd and Rosie---ATG
Lacy Sunshine---Use a Sentiment
Robyn's Fetish---Valentine
Gem of a Challenge---All You Need is Love
Scrapbook Stamp Society---ATG + Optional Use a Heart
Artistic Inspirations---ATG/Hearts
Digi Darla's---Your Personal Style (Layered)
Craft Your Passion---Love is in the Air
Digi Makeover---ATG
Ladybug Crafts---The One I Love
Papertake Weekly---ATG/Optional Shaped Card
Crafting by Designs---ATG
Creative Moments---ATG/Add Some Sparkle
Scrap-Creations---Favorite Embellishment (Little Nail Gems)
Scribble and Scrap---ATG
As You Like It---Favorite Style (I love "Layering" with Clean and Graphic Design)
Crafts Galore---Add a Bling
Craftyhazelnut's---Use Patterned Paper
One Crazy Stamper---ATG
Loves Rubber Stamps---ATG
Cuttlebug Mania---A Touch of Red (Used Cuttlebug and Nestabilities for Lacy Circle)
Fan-Tastic Tuesday---ATG (Must be Square)
Top Tip Tuesday---Girly (Cut up sentiments can have a wonderful effect on a project)
Bunny Zoe's Crafts---Stitching
Great Impressions---Floral Images
Doodle Pantry---Any Digi Goes

Thanks a lot for visiting my site and leaving some comments.  I truly enjoy reading them.  Just want to encourage you to join our Challenge at WAW.  You can make any project you want as long as it's family friendly, inspirational or uplifting.  You can enter up to 5 projects for more chances of winning.  We would like to see your creation using our free Word Art but it's not mandatory.  We just enjoy the creative inspiration that each of you share and would be happy to know you a lot better through your artwork.  There's wonderful prizes to be won from our sponsors this week---Heart and Soul Rubber Stamps and Robyn's Fetish.  Take the time to meditate on the many blessings that God has in store for you today instead of focusing on the negatives.  

Sunday, February 2, 2014

You are Fine Center Step Card---Join the Fun of an Anything Goes Challenge (with Optional Twist) in my neighborhood, 613 Avenue Create!

Good Sunday morning, everyone!  It's another awesome day to praise Jesus!  Whatever the condition of our bodies, our lives and everything around us, it does not change the fact that God is sovereign and in control over everything, no matter how chaotic we view it may seem.  I will be honest that we are facing such a storm in life since the beginning of this year and I have to live daily with the weapons that the enemy is throwing our way.  It's easy to say, "Trust in the Lord" when things are not in such a chaos but it is one thing to really fight (putting on the full armor of God---Ephesians 6:10-18) to keep the promises of the Lord and apply it to all our circumstances when things seem to be getting out of hand.  It's when we can sing of the Lord's goodness when trials seem to silence us.  When we can lift up our hands to honor and praise Him when our bodies are feeling nothing but pain.  To declare the peace and joy of the Lord when there's nothing present but sorrow.  To keep the good fight of faith when circumstances and everything around you says it's hopeless.  As a believer of Jesus Christ, we experience great trials as we live the purposes that God set for us to travel while in this world.  I always hold in my heart the scriptures in Romans 8:28, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."  This scripture is one of the treasures I keep in my heart for I know that trials are but here for a moment and thought it may seem to last through the night,  His joy always comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5)!   Believers live in 2 different worlds---the physical world we see and the spirit world that is unseen.   The scriptures tells us in John 4:23-24, "Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth."  Although we exist in this physical and temporary world, we are citizens of God's Kingdom (eternal and unseen).  While the world operates only in what their physical senses can perceive, we all have a direct connection with Almighty God through faith in His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ!  We were once in the world (worldly lifestyle) with darkened spirits like those who are living their lives in rebellion from God and by their deeds, promoting lasciviousness, lawlessness and all forms of evil agenda (so rampant nowadays!).  But thanks be to God, who by grace alone, gave life to our darkened spirits and allowed us to understand His Ways by way of the Cross.  Though I may experience great trials, one thing is certain---I AM NOT ALONE!  He that lives in me overcame every trial known to man and because my life is tucked safely in His care, I do have hope even in hopeless situations, joy when there is but mourning, peace in the midst of the storm and love when there's all but hatred.  It's never easy but who says I am doing it on my own?  Not at all!  I can only stand because I have the Overcomer of overcomers---JESUS, living inside of me!  He fights all my battles and all I have to do is walk and rely upon Him every step of the way.  If you are in the midst of trials like me, don't lose hope.  Instead, meditate on the promises of the Lord (His Word) and declare them (speak it to yourself) in all your circumstances.  Here's some verses in God's Word that we can hold onto in these difficult times:

"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:11-13)

"So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it." (1 Corinthians 10:12-13)

"No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:37-39)

Oh the awesomeness of the Word of God!  I hope it brings you peace today and the many days to come.  Anyway, we have a new challenge today at 613 Avenue Create.  It's Anything Goes with a Twist (Use Felt).  I have here a Center Step Card for your inspiration featuring a beautiful digi stamp called "A Flamenco Dancer" from our sponsor this week---Milk Coffee!  I colored it with my Bic/ProMarker/Prismacolor markers.  I used a white base CS, cut and scored to make a center step card that is 5.5 inches.  The 3 DP's are all from Paper Studio Stack called "Newsworthy" and is my favorite stack ever.  The wonderful Lacy Oval is cut with Nestabilities, the border with MS Punch and the nail head (white) gems from Imaginisce and I incorporated some blue felt (for our Challenge Twist).  I made the flower here with the combination of lace, brad and my cute "CROCHET FLOWER" which you can purchase in my ETSY in many colors.  Lastly, the wonderful sentiment is a freebie from Create with TLC (Thanks, Paulette!) and finished with lots of stitching.  Hope this makes you smile, too!







This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Make It Monday---ATG
Challenges 4 Everybody---ATG
Rhedd and Rosie---ATG
Whimsy Stamps---Something New (New Sentiment and Image)
Lacy Sunshine---Use a Sentiment
Scrapbook Stamp Society---ATG + Optional Use a Heart
Creative Moments---ATG/Add Some Sparkle
Scrap-Creations---Favorite Embellishment (Little Nail Gems)
Scribble and Scrap---ATG
As You Like It---Favorite Style (I love "Layering" with Clean and Graphic Design)
Crafts Galore---Add a Bling
Craftyhazelnut's---Use Patterned Paper
Flat Friends---More than One Fold
One Crazy Stamper---ATG
HIMCR---I'm Blue Without You (Use Blues)
Bunny Zoe's Crafts---Stitching
Eclectic Ellapu---Texture
Great Impressions---Floral Images
Doodle Pantry---Any Digi Goes
Color Me Creative---Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
Suzy Bee's Bloomin Challenge---Flowers
Simply Create Too---Mother's Day or For a Female

This it for now, guys.  Make sure to join us at our neighborhood---613 Avenue Create---for an Anything Goes Challenge.  If you want to be challenged (like I was), take on the Optional Twist (Add Felt).  But there's really no reason for you to miss it.  Our sponsor---Milk Coffee, is giving away a fabulous prize to our winner.  Can't wait to see what you create.  So, all of us, who has placed their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ---cheer-up and don't give-up!  He has our backs both now and forevermore...


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