Art, poetry

Butterfly Tears


Jpeg
Mixed media and poem

Butterflies often symbolize transformation, and rightly so. I mean, they start out as a creepy crawly caterpillar, bound to the ground. Then they hide away for a bit in seclusion, all alone. Once their cocoon breaks open, they are set free. They’re given a new colourful body and wings to fly.

I like to compare this process of metamorphosis in the natural world to my own life experience. I see myself as this sad, dark and empty girl in the artwork above. Not me today, but years ago when I was young and immature. Years ago when I was asking what the heck I was doing here on Earth. When I was living an empty, meaningless life, without direction or purpose.

When I came to my senses and decided to leave that life behind, my transformation started. It didn’t happen overnight though. I spun a good thick cocoon because it took time. A long time. I am thankful that God has pulled me through. I owe it all to Him, because I know that I couldn’t do it alone. Nobody can.

I would love to know if you can relate to this at all. Please share your own experience.


 

The above painting was done on recycled material. An empty cereal box actually.

poetry

A Scarred Gift (Triple Gogyohka) – 3 day quote challenge


A Scarred Gift

“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.” — Kahlil Gibran

I’m a huge believer that suffering causes growth and that those that have scars from the bumps and grinds of life, have great wisdom to offer others. That is, if the one that has suffered allows those experiences to be teachers. Now don’t get me wrong. I try to avoid suffering at all costs. And there are many that don’t allow their experiences to teach them, but instead get bitter and angry with people or with God.

I have been invited by Geralyn, from Where My Feet Are, Sibella, from Arts & Rhymes, Himali, from Decoding Happiness, Sagarika, from In Depth, and Christina, from The Wordy Rose to participate in a ‘3 quotes/3 days challenge. I don’t think I’ll be able to do this consecutively, but I will get all three out sooner or later 🙂

I am suppose to nominate three other bloggers to do this challenge as well, however, I would like to nominate all those who read this to do this challenge. Anyone that would like to.

I wrote the above poem to go along with this quote, because I was just chomping at the bit to create. I had been working all week on a mixed media piece and I really just didn’t like it at all. Sooooo, I crumpled it up and threw it out. At any rate, this poem is inspired by the book, “Ecclesiastes”, which I absolutely love. It was written by an Israeli king, King Solomon, who was a man that made it his life mission to seek wisdom. It offers a philosophy of life and how to find spiritual significance in a life that would otherwise be meaningless (Christian Growth Study Bible). 

How about you? Do you believe that suffering can be your teacher and that great wisdom can come from it?


Gogyohka literally translates as “five-line poem” or “song”. It is a Japanese micro-poetry form that is only five lines long, and has no syllabic restriction.

Poem

Jar of Clay – Etheree


jar of clay 2

I saw the most amazing photo of a life-like sculpture yesterday.

6fb9370ed505552169dd195c2f84a271

Sam Jinks sculpture. Not a painting…not a photo… But an incredibly life-like sculpture.

Isn’t this an amazing photo? It makes me think about the cycle of life. We come into it as a tiny baby, live a ton of experiences, strive for eternal youth, but it’s no use. Sooner or later we all reach the winter of our lives and all of us have the same mortal destiny. We come into this world a little baby naked and we leave it naked.

I believe that the body is just like this jar of clay. It simply houses me. This jar is functional and serves a purpose. Along the way, in it’s fragility, it chips and cracks as it experiences the bumps of life. The beautiful thing though, is that God has made a way for me to shine. Within me, he has placed His very self, which is an eternal treasure that doesn’t waste away and decay. A treasure that daily fulfills and transforms me into something that meshes with this treasure. When this jar has served its purpose ,and who I am is released from it’s hold – ahhhhhhhhh – now that’s freedom.

Do you ever consider the cycle of life and how brief and fragile it really is?


The Etheree poetry form consists of ten lines. Each line has a syllable count as one higher than the line before – 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10

I have just returned from an amazing mini-vacation in Porto Seguro, Bahia, Brazil. It was an amazing four days. I will post some photos soon. I will be packing up the rest of our stuff and moving south this week. Busy times. It may take me a while to respond to any comments.

Poem, Spiritual

Humanity’s Search


 

Humanity's Search.jpg

 

Wandering
Wandering
Lost and alone
Wondering

Searching
Seeking
Seems I’m missing
Something


Ideas
Opinions
Puzzle pieces
Lacking

A void
A vacuum
Questions and doubts
Unanswered

Empty
Hollow
Do I blindly
Follow

A cry
A plead
For life’s meaning
Value

Are you a human being? Yes? Well then, I’m sure you’ve grappled with at least some of what you’ve just read. I know I have. Humans are the only beings on Earth that have the ability to reason and think, and so it comes as no surprise that we question life and death, and all that it entails.

According to the philosopher and theologian St. Augustine, man is prone to a curious feeling of dissatisfaction and to a subtle sense of longing for something undefined. This feeling of dissatisfaction arises from his fallen condition: although he has an innate potential to relate to God or the absolute, this potential can never be fully realized, and so he yearns for other things to fill its place. Yet these other things do not satisfy, and he is left with an insatiable feeling of longing—longing for something that cannot be defined (1).

I remember when I was a child, first thinking of death.  Man, it frightened the bejiggers out of me.  I couldn’t grasp the concept of not existing anymore.  How could I just live life and then “poof” one day be gone? No more.  Wiped out of existence.  It frightened me so much that I just willed myself to not think of it.  Every so often though, it would come up in my thoughts again.  This first happened when I was a child.  Arriving at adulthood I started to question more.  I think we all do.  Where did I come from? Where am I really going when I die? Why am I frightened of death? What is the purpose of life? These types of things. You know, the light and fluffy stuff.

Phew! Ok, enough of ‘being heavy’.  I’ve come to terms with all of this stuff in my life.  I don’t consider myself to be wandering and wondering anymore, lost and alone, empty and hollow, crying out for meaning.  I no longer sense a void or vacuum, and I believe that my life has value.  However, I know that there are so many out there that are still living in the reality of this poem.

How about you? Does this poem cause you to think about the questions of life? Have you ever felt the way described here?  Just a little food for thought for this Wednesday afternoon.

(1) http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/hide-and-seek/201208/the-seven-things-only-human-beings-can-do

Photo by: http://www.glitter-graphics.com/users/rocker_chick_7

Poem, Spiritual

A Beautiful Chaotic Mess


 

A beautiful chatic mess GettyImages_91665755-1.jpg

Sunshine
Happiness
Love
Smiles
Everywhere I look
Beauty for miles and miles

Anxious
Worried
Stressed out
Hurried
Mind is racing
Heart is chasing

Peace
Purpose
Stability
Security
Emotions all over
Reason trying to take over

I am who I am
And will always be
A beautiful chaotic mess
But firm in thee
Sometimes I wander
And lose my way
Bring me back to you
Bring me back today

Do you ever feel like this?  How do you deal with the chaos that happens in your mind sometimes?  Do you ever feel emotionally out of control?

Penny for your thoughts hmmmmm…

Photo credit:  Getty Images www.bigquestionsonline.com

Spiritual

Splash some color on the grey


Image

We are like windows
Stained with colors of the rainbow
Set in a darkened room
Till the bridegroom comes to shining through

Then the colors fall around our feet
Over those we meet
Covering all the grey that we see

Rainbow colors of assorted hues
Come exchange your blues
For His love that you see shining through me

My colors grow so dim
When I start to fall away from Him
But up comes the strongest wind
That He sends to blow me back into his arms again

And then the colors fall around my feet
Over those I meet
Changing all the grey that I see

Rainbow colors of the Risen Son
Reflect the One
The One who came to set us all free

We are like windows
Stained with colors of the rainbow
No longer set in a darkened room
‘Cause the bridegroom wants to shine from you

(You can listen to this song here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb6ShUYq-1k)

I love Keith Green’s music.  Yes, it’s a bit outdated and all, but the message continues to stand strong.  His songs and life have had a great impact on my life and have spoken profoundly into my heart.

I am a Christian.  A follower of Jesus.  But I haven’t always been one.  And this song soooooo tells it how it is for me.  God has made me colourful.  He’s made everyone colourful.  But until we yield to his plans and purposes for us, we remain set in a darkened room.  Stuck.  Unable to shine.  Unable to glow.  Unable to make any sort of a difference that is truly relevant and eternal.

I am so happy to say that I am now showing my colors.  I am shining and bringing life to wherever I am and to wherever I go.  We live in such a grey world, full of pain, suffering, violence, selfishness, etc.  We need splashes of color so that we handle it.

I have discovered why I am here on earth.  Why I exist?  Where I am going when I die?  What the meaning of it all is.  And I am sooooo thankful to the Son – to the Way, Truth and Life for staining me with the colors of the rainbow and freeing me from my shackles that kept me from allowing His colors to shine through me and from me.

Are you letting your colors shine?  Are they falling around your feet and changing all the grey that you see?  Please leave a comment and let me know how you let your colors shine.  Or, if you’re stuck in a darkened room and would like to know more about how to get out and let your colors shine, let me know.

Food and Nutrition, Food For Thought Friday - FFTF, Spiritual

FFTF (Food for Thought Friday) – Gluten-free Quesadillas & “Do you have a calling?”


FFTF – Food for the body and the spirit

quesadillas calling pic

Happy Friday to you!  Who doesn’t love Fridays? I think almost everybody does? It’s the start of the weekend, which means it’s time to relax, have some fun, meet with friends, spend quality time with family, etc. Sooooo, why not start off the weekend with some yummy quesadillas? – but not the ones you may be used to.  Check out this gluten-free recipe.  Then check out the “Food for the Spirit” below.

gulten-free quesadillas pic

serves 4

Tortillas (adapted from http://stupideasypaleo.com/2013/08/23/simple-paleo-tortillas/)

  • 2 eggs and 2 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons melted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup arrowroot powder
  • 2 tsp ground coconut
  • Pinch of salt

Filling

  • Some type of meat (shredded chicken, turkey breast, Canadian bacon, etc.)
  • 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomato
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • a little olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste (optional)
  • 20 spinach leaves

First make the tortillas.  Crack the eggs into a medium-size bowl and whisk.  Then add the butter, baking soda, arrowroot powder, ground coconut (or coconut flour) and pinch of salt.  Spoon an 1/8th of the recipe (about 4 Tbsp) into an 8 inch round non-stick frying pan and swirl it so that it covers the surface.  it will be very thin, as if making crepes.  Cook through on one side (about 1-2 minutes) and then flip and cook the other side (1-2 minutes). This recipe is so easy peasy and delicious.

Now for mounting the quesadillas.  But first you need to sauté your tomato and onion.  Just pour a little olive oil into a frying pan and add the tomato and onion until it is nicely sautéed.  Then take one tortilla and place the meat on first (quantity is up to you). Follow with 1/4 of the cheese, 1/4 of the sauteed tomato and onion and 5 spinach leaves.  Place another tortilla on top and put in a pre-heated oven, just until the cheese is melted.  Or, you could nuke it in the microwave.

These were so good they’ve become a staple in our household now.  Arrowroot is a great option for those that don’t want gluten in their diet.  It is very low in calories and fat free.  It also has relatively more protein than other starchy food sources such as yam, potato, cassava and plantain and is easily digestible.

For the Spirit

calling pic

Do you have a calling?

Of course you do.  We all do.  We were made with a purpose.  You have a calling in life.

In the Bible – in the book of Genesis – God called Abraham to leave his country and go to a place that He was going to show him (Genesis 12).  He, essentially, was the first missionary recorded in history. Moses also had a calling – to deliver the people of Israel from the oppression they were suffering in Egypt (Exodus 3).  Then there was Gideon (Judges 6), the prophet Samuel (1 Samuel 3), the small boy, David, that became King (1 Samuel 16), and the list goes on throughout the entire Bible.

Then there was Staci. Huh?! Wait! There was no ‘Staci’ in the Bible. That’s right. I was born long after it was written. God doesn’t change though.  He’s still passionate about the human race.  He still wants to create, love, impact, inspire, and be known by those he made. He still works on establishing His kingdom here on Earth.  “How does he do that though?”, you may ask. He does it through us. He does it through people. He gives us, His creation, the amazing privilege to co-create with Him. And He gives us satisfaction in fulfilling the mandate he’s given us.

On ‘wiki.answers.com’ I found this definition on ‘What it means to have a calling in life’:

“It is based on the belief that each person is placed on Earth by God to do something.  For some people it may be something great, for others it may be a small and simple thing but it is something that only that one person can do.”

I received a calling from God to go into the nations of the world and minister to the deepest needs of people, which are not always the most obvious needs. Sounds pretty heavy, doesn’t it? I received my calling in such a personal and intimate way. My experience was very supernatural.  Not all people have a strong experience like mine. However, all people receive their calling through relationship with the Almighty Himself.

So, how then can one find their calling in life? The answer is RELATIONSHIP.  You need to first have a relationship with God. And how does one come into relationship with God? Check out this site: http://odb.org/personal-relationship-with-god/.

Please leave a comment and let me know about your calling.  How did you receive your calling?  What has God called you to do?

apple yogurt pic

Check out my facebook page for my newest favorite breakfast recipe, Apple Yogurt Bowl – https://www.facebook.com/godcolouredgirl