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

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Encouragement Series: Faith is Taking the First Step Card---Join Our Anything Goes/Inspirational Challenge at Word Art Wednesday...

Hello everyone! We started another Inspirational/Anything Goes Challenge a couple of days ago at Word Art Wednesday (WAW) featuring a new Scripture Word Art (you can download for free at the WAW site). It comes from Isaiah 7:14 which says, "Therefore the LORD himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel."  
Since the downfall of Adam in the Garden of Eden, humanity had been waiting for a Savior that would free us from the bondage of Sin and Death which brought curse to all creation.  The created betrayed the Creator! Humanity didn't have anyone untainted by the Sin nature (Adam inherited from Satan) to redeem us back to God's holy presence. We were found guilty---cursed for all eternity and our destination was no other than the Lake of Fire with Satan and every demonic beings.  James 1:17-18 tells us, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created."  Therefore, to be separated from God is to live without any good thing.  He is the Source of life and without Him, all that's left is darkness and torment. If you allow this truth to sink in to the deepest part of your being, you will realize the abundant grace and hope that can only come from the birth of the God/Man Savior---Jesus Christ!

This Christmas season, we remember what took place that blessed night, when Jesus was born.  When the mighty hand of God reached out to mankind by sending His One and Only Son, holy and blameless who took on flesh to be born as a man so He could redeem mankind from the ultimate wrath of being vanished from God's presence forever. Why my Lord?  Why would you show us mercy when all we've ever done was  to rebel against you?  We made ourselves our own god by following the evil ways of Satan.  We chose to walk blindly to satisfy our fleshly desires and we proudly display our lustful lifestyles, doing everything to encourage others to do the same.  I share David's sentiment when he addressed God in Psalm 8:3-4 saying, "When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?  I believe Jesus revealed the very heart of the Father towards us in John 3:16-21 when He said, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.  This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
God's obvious reason for saving mankind is LOVE!  I don't know with you but the moment I stopped pursuing myself and inclined my ears to God's voice, I found answers to all of my questions.  God's Word contains the truth to the ways, plan and purpose of God which was embodied, demonstrated  and fulfilled by Jesus Christ.  The inner working of the Holy Spirit in a believer's life testify of God's love towards us. Realizing how valuable we are to God through the sacrifice of Christ, we could freely love Him back!  And that's what happened to many of us!  We loved God because He first loved us. Romans 5:6-8 says, "You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." God is calling us to Himself today, all broken and torn up.  Humble yourself before Him and receive the gift of salvation that Jesus fully paid on your behalf.  It is free for everyone but only those that accept it by faith (trust, depend, rely, believe, cling to) will benefit from it.  Just like the sentiment written in my featured card today quoted by Martin Luther King, Jr. that says, "Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase," your first step towards faith is to repent of your sins, entrust your life to the Lord Jesus Christ and His finished work at the Cross followed by studying His Word.  The Holy Spirit will take you one level staircase to the next as you remain faithful to Him. Before long, you'll be instrumental in helping others thrive and grow. So, be firm and continue to fight the good fight of faith.
For this Card, I used an image from DRS Stamps called "Cattail Milk Pail" that I watercolored using my Stabilo 68 markers.  The base is a white CS, cut and scored to make an A2 size card.  The wonderful DP came from My Mind's Eye and the beautiful sentiment is a rubber stamp from Inkadinkado while the sentiment inside and on the envelope is from Studio G.  Finally, I added some glitters from Stickles (Crystal) and incorporated some regular and fancy stitching.  Not intentionally but I loved that the background paper looked like stairs which complemented the main sentiment.  I really love the rustic, shabby and vintage look of this card.





 This Card is entered into the following Challenges:

Let's Craft and Create---ATG/Vintage Feel

Make sure you join us at WAW Challenge.  You can use the free Word Art in your creation and link it to our Challenge but is not a requirement.  As long as it's family-friendly, uplifting and inspirational, you can enter several times in two weeks.  A great prize awaits our winner from our wonderful sponsors---Crafty Individuals (UK 25 GC) and DRS Stamps (25 GC).  So excited to see what you come up with.  Remember that faith is the currency of heaven and without it, we cannot please God.  When we know the promises of God in His Word, we are not easily deceived.   

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  1. A very pretty card JoAnn.
    Stay safe

  2. Very pretty card! I really like the rustic feeling :)
    Thanks a lot for joining us at Let`s Craft and Create :)

  3. Lovely card!
    Thank you for joining us at the Crafts Galore Encore Challenge.

  4. Very beautiful card, JoAnn. I love your watercoloring, and you've managed to pull so many different elements in the card together so well. Thank you for joining the Happy Little Stampers Watercolor challenge!

  5. A very beautiful card.
    Thank you for taking part in the Mirtillamente challenge!
    Good luck and I hope to see you again.
    Alena DT Mirtillamente

  6. This is so pretty and what a lovely design too. Nice work.
    Thank you for sharing in our challenge at Classic Design Challenge we really appreciate you joining in.

    Annette DT

  7. Absolutely gorgeous work.
    Thank you for sharing with us over at Morgan's ArtWorld. We hope to see you again.
    ~ Annette CT -

  8. Beautiful creation! Thank you for sharing with us over at Morgan's ArtWorld. We hope to see you again.
    ~ Sherry CT/Admin/Coordinator xx



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