Wednesday, September 19, 2018

When God Calls You On The Carpet

Did you ever ask God to give you guidance?

I have. I fasted for it. I prayed for it. I begged and pleaded to Him for an answer. I even threw myself on my bed face down and ugly-cried for His answer. 

What was my question? 
'What do You want me to do Lord?'

Just when I thought He'd never answer, I heard His voice ring in my ears. "Write books."
Being the good, obedient Christian I am, I replied, "All of them?!?"
And I know I'd heard a chuckle when He said, "Yes. All of them."

Now He didn't mean all of them, as in the whole-wide-world 'all of them', but all of them as in 'all of those partially-finished writing projects that are sitting dormant as notes in the folders on your desk'. 

I tried counting those folders once, but I ran out of fingers and toes. Twice.

That's a lot of books.

This exchange took place a while ago, mind you; in fact, I wrote a blog post about it. And yet here I sit, still bookless and folder-full.

I can understand how the Hebrews felt when God wasn't pushing them 24/7. The miracles are noted, praised on, and then left to be forgotten in some dusty notebook- or in my case laptop- until we heard from Him again. Last week I was sitting all alone and wallowing in misery about my purpose, but this time God decided to let me wallow- at least until Sunday.

When I went to church, there was a visiting speaker. I love new speakers- at least most of them. I liked this man too- he had a lot of great insights to share. 

And then he said...'Stop giving God excuses! If God told you to write books, write books!

I know the speaker gave other examples after that, but I was too busy giving an 'uh-oh I'm in trouble' look to my best church buddy sitting next to me, who gave me an 'oh boy, yes you are' look in return.

She knew my 'write books' story. She also knew I was full of excuses for not writing. Any writing. 

God called me on the carpet. Big time. 

She knew it. I knew it. And God certainly knew what I wasn't doing.


No more excuses. This was a warning, and I didn't want Him warning me again. No forty years in the desert for me, thank you very much.

But what to write first? Same problem as before (since there are no fewer than seventy book ideas with half-written notes in my folders), but God was nice enough to give me a little clarity this time around.

Three books are on the list to start with (the first needs a final edit as the artwork is being done, the second is half-written and the third is a coloring book for my artsy muse moments), and I'm telling you all of this, my Dear Readers, just to make sure I stay on track to get these books finished!

I don't know how long the art will take, but even if I get the final editing done before the art is finished, I already have that half-finished book lined up. The best part is the second book cover is so simple, I'm going to create it!

If all goes well (and fast) at least one book will be out before the holidays. At least, that's my goal. Setting deadlines are also something I have to do. Small goals, small successes, but big results!

Has God ever called you on the carpet? What's your story and how can I pray for you?

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Juice Your Creativity!

Reality is getting in the way of my creativity!

You know what I're too busy to do this, your schedule won't allow you to do that; there's no time, money, resources or room to do what you really want to do.

The creative juices dry up if they're not used, folks. Believe me, I know!

So what do you do when your creative well goes dry? Juice your creativity!


Ask yourself a few questions. What do you love doing? What actions do I need to take to get inspired? How can I make these ideas become a reality? When can I make these ideas become reality?

One of the things I love doing is fabric art. I opened my drawers of fabric and started with them.
I looked at the bright colors.
I let the fabrics flow through my hands.
I wrinkled each piece, laid it against the other fabrics for companions and contrasts, and unfolded it to see just how much fabric I had to work with.

Once the juices started flowing, I looked at books of fabric projects, odd notes I'd made about fabrics and project ideas, and the next thing you know I was excited. I wanted to create again!

What happens when you get excited about something? You make time for it.

The activity itself doesn't matter. Whether you write, do paper art, or make a quilt like me, or something else that's just as awesome- the idea is to get excited so you're more motivated to get a project started- and finished.

It also helps you organize your time and space. I have a great sewing space that fell into a catch-all for a face-painting project, and I haven't sewn in months because my machine is unbelievably cluttered. But after playing with my fabrics, instead of dreading the mess to clean, I'm looking forward to using that space for sewing once more.

And when the sewing wanes, I'll do something with paper. Or writing. Or attempt new experiments with fabric I haven't dared to try yet. I want to keep those wonderful juices flowing in a positive, more productive direction.

Have you been feeling juiceless lately? Ask yourself the questions I listed, and let me know how you juiced your creativity!