My Beautiful Love

“But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.”

(Ruth 1:16-17)

My husband and I chose this Bible verse to be read and sung at our wedding almost 23 years ago.  Although the context is Ruth, a daughter-in-law, speaking to Naomi, her mother-in-law, it is a perfect picture of loyalty and commitment in relationships.  The entire book of Ruth describes God’s redeeming love for His bride, the Church.  How fitting, then, for a scripture reading at a wedding!

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My husband is indeed “my beautiful love in Christ” and I’m so thankful for him!  It’s important to journal our gratitude in our Bibles, especially for our spouses.  It’s too easy to think about all the things that annoy us about our spouses, and the things that we would like to change.  But the more we focus on how grateful we are for who and what they ARE, rather than for what they are NOT, the more our love and appreciation grows for them.  I encourage you to journal your love and gratitude for your spouse and/or other loved ones.


I created this page using several Sweet’N Sassy stamp sets, distress oxide inks, watercolor pencils, and a doily and washi for embellishments.  I began with the Brotherly Love and Girl Power sets to create the images of my husband and me.  When using these sets, it is important to stamp and then mask the elements you want to appear on top so you don’t have intersecting lines.  Next, I created the rose frame around the bride and groom with the Itty Bitty Blossoms set, again masking the roses so it appears the greenery and rose stamps work together, rather than conflict with each other.  I stamped a few extra roses and fussy cut them out to use around the page.  I colored the stamped images, as well as sponged the page with distress oxide ink.  I then stamped the words “beautiful” and “love” using the Hello, My Name Is set.  (The stamp actually says “loved” but I masked off the “d”).  I added the doily in the corners, mainly to cover up where I accidentally DROPPED the “beautiful” stamp!  I added a bit of white detailing on the roses with a white gel pen.  Finally, I stamped the music staff texture stamp from Texture Tiles 1 and then I added some wordfetti and washi to complete the page.  

 

Thanks for joining me today! 


–Julie

Handcrafted by God

13 For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.

(Psalm 139:13-16)

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This past weekend I entered a new stage of adulthood.  I became a great-aunt.  Not just once, mind you.  Not even twice.  But three times over!  I became a triple great-aunt in a matter of TWO DAYS!  Two of my nieces had babies within two days of each other.  Needless to say, my sister was over the moon that both of her daughters gave birth to healthy baby girls on opposite sides of the state, and she was able to be there for both of them.  Here’s a picture of twins Leah and London, and baby Aria.  Aren’t they just beautiful?!

 

These precious little bundles of joy had been prayed and longed for by many people, especially their parents.  But long before they had even been conceived and thought of by their own parents, God had lovingly planned them and designed them.  And when it came time for their little bodies to grow inside their mothers’ wombs, He tenderly handcrafted them with love.  Their parents will continue to grow and nurture them with love and care, just as God will continue to watch over and protect them with His love and tenderness.

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I created this Bible journaling page in celebration of their birth.  I love to commemorate events in my Bible much like I would in a scrapbook.  I created a tag with distress oxide inks and then “Handcrafted by God with love”.  I added some splatter color on the page, washi tape, and a tag.  I finished by stamping the babies’ names and journaling my praise.

Praise God for my three new great-nieces.  Praise God for His life-giving love!

 

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Life Handmade Sentiments 2

 

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Sizzix Tim Holtz Alterations Alphanumeric Thinlits Die

Stand Tall and Stand Out

“Do not be conformed to this world,but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

(Romans 12:2)

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Paul tells the church in Rome to not conform to the world.  Rome was the center of the Roman Empire, and at that time, a very pagan and secular place.  What does it mean to “conform”?  The definition of conform that applies here is to “be similar in form or type; to agree with.”  Paul emphasized that the Christians in Rome should NOT be similar in type or form with the pagan, secular world.  Rather, they should stand out and be dissimilar from the crowd and the rest of the world.

This timely message applies to us today too.  God was speaking to us through Paul’s letter.  Today, our culture is completely void of godliness and righteousness.  Movies and shows, music, fashion, social media, etc.  It all screams self-preservation and self-glorification, which is the opposite of God’s self-sacrificing love.  Of course, there are some glimpses of goodness in this world, and we should cling to those things (Phil. 4:8).

God calls us to stand out and show others His beautiful character in this ugly world.   We have to make choices that reflect what God would want for us, even when we feel like we are going against the crowd.  We have to stand tall and stand out, even if this world doesn’t agree with our choices.  Even when we feel like we are all alone.  But we aren’t alone–He is standing there with us, to help us stand tall and stand out.  Like a beautiful flamingo standing tall.

I used the new Be a Flamingo stamp set from Sweet ‘N Sassy Stamps, as well the Bitty Minnie Alpha set and the Beach Blessings Printable.  You can see how I masked the leaves and flowers to create the tropical background.  I tried out the Jane Davenport brights watercolor set to paint the images and loved the vibrancy.

How is God calling you to stand out?  How has He helped you stand tall, even when you had to stand alone?

GOD WINS!

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

“And that spells trouble, with a capital T!”  This line comes from The Music Man, one of my favorite musicals.  The trouble it was speaking of was actually a pool hall opening in town.  Oh, if only that were all the trouble we had to worry about.  These days, there’s school shootings, suicides, road rage incidents, politics, international insecurity, financial worries, marital struggles, parental difficulties, etc., etc., etc.  Jesus wasn’t kidding when He told the disciples that “…in this world you will have trouble.”  There’s trouble everywhere!

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I know I have troubles.  In my home.  At work. With my kids. With my marriage. With my health.  Don’t get me wrong–I am so very blessed. But there are certainly trials and tribulations in all areas of my life.  Satan knows just where to attack us.  But Jesus promises here in this passage that He has overcome these troubles, and He guides and helps me to overcome them too.  Actually, it’s simply a matter of letting Him doing the overcoming and me just trusting Him and allowing Him to work everything out.  Simple, but not necessarily a simple task to do.

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But, oh, if only those were all the troubles we had to worry about.  It’s not the troubles in the world that are most troublesome, but the trouble the world is in.  Did you get that?  Let me say it again.  The troubles IN the world don’t compare to the trouble the world is in.  The world is in trouble because of the sin problem, because Adam and Eve sinned, which allowed Satan to gain control.  We and all humanity were doomed to die for all eternity because God cannot be in the presence of sin.  But take heart!  Jesus, with His perfect life lived, and perfect death offered on the Cross, took back control of this world.  He has overcome!  Now, we are offered eternal life with God through faith.

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For this faith art journaling page, I journaled in my 100 Days of Bible Promises Devotional by Dayspring.  I used the June Faith Art Box by Creative Retreat Kits, and I used some Shimmerz products:  Cotton Candy Spritz and Don’t Rain on My Parade Vibez.  You can see the entire process video below or on my YouTube Channel.

How has God helped you to overcome troubles, both little and big problems, in your life?

 

 

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Creative Retreat Kits June Faith Art Box
100 Days of Bible Promises Devotional
100 Days of Bible Promises Devotional