God…As Friend


“Someone with a bible which is falling apart, lives a life which is not.” A direct quote from a recent sermon of which I had the privilege to listen.

God’s Word can come to us in many ways. As American’s, we are blessed to freely hold in our possession God’s book of wisdom, truth and light.  Personally, I have become somewhat of a bible hoarder!  A sentimental fool of sorts, I have a new passion for leafing through bibles at antique shops. I look for hand written notes in the margin, while inhaling the scent of the aged paper. I often wonder and think about the number of blessed tears that have graced its pages. In these moments, all of these subtleties create an encounter with God.

Perhaps, the one who held the bible before had only opened it once or twice. On the other hand, it could be the opposite. Sometimes the pages are too fragile to turn and other times they are crisp and clean. Those are the times when I wonder, and ask myself, “What does God want my bible to look like?”   

“I can do all things though Christ who strengthens me,” (Philippians 4:13) a verse echoing in my heart today and bringing about thoughts of friendship.  I am going to date myself here, but when I think of God as my friend, images come to mind of somewhat historical friendships. Take for instance, Tom and Jerry; Laverne and Shirley; Laura Wilder and her lovely dog Bandit. 

These relationships portray the best of friendships however, not always glamourous or warm and fuzzy. Each also contained many instances of miscommunication, sadness, and periods of silence.  Yet, at the end of every episode, tensions were released, fences mended and their love for one another outweighed any of the turmoil.

So, now you are wondering what does all of this have to do with God and the bible, right?  Today I invite you to begin a new friendship with God. Choose one of your favorite historical friendships as a model and re-invent how you spend each day, and every moment with God. 

I invite you to begin today and ware down that bible of yours. Dust it off, pray in it.  Let your tears stain the pages. Allow your heart to feel God’s word in and through you. Don’t be afraid to write your thoughts in the margins; the space is there for a reason!

Hand Written note on Psalm 103. Written in Italian, feel free to comment if you know what it says!

Reflection moment: What does God want my bible to look like? What does my friendship with God look like? How can I strengthen my walk with God?

Are you praying with a worn out bible or have a family heirloom? I would love to hear your comments in the section below.

Many Blessings,

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

Follow Me


2020 has been full of surprises and surrender! I’m learning things about myself, my time management skills and creativity for pandemic boredom.

I’m also learning how to use the opposite side of my body and that is amping up my need for slow controlled movements. Although frustrating, this exercises my virtue of patience.


I had surgery a little over a week ago on my shoulder so I am now only able to use my non-dominant left hand and arm for various tasks. The plan was to return to work next week and continue on the healing journey. Then yesterday happened, I blacked out at the doctors office and had to spend several hours there before being able to come home and salvage what was left of my wedding anniversary.


All of a sudden I find myself in a place of forced respite; the doctor has written me off work for another week. Having a lot of downtime would be awesome, but in this physical state I am limited as to what I can do. I love to journal when I pray and not being able to write with my dominant hand has been somewhat disheartening. Today God invited me to spend some time outside and journal using my left hand and a totally different side of my brain.


In July I attended an overnight retreat on praying through art and received an art prayer journal which I’ve only opened once since then, so today out came the oil based crayons and watercolors.


I began with the page in portrait orientation. While listening to prayerful music and closing my eyes I placed the brush in the center and just started with a gentle swirling motion. Feeling my hand moving upwards, I opened my eyes to extend outward. At first glance what I saw was a snail with googly eyes and I wondered where God could be leading me. Sitting quietly for just another moment I opened my eyes again and turned the page landscape and what I saw then was a unique looking fish! I then worked from the bottom of the sea adding plants and corals then the water. I wanted to put some sort of a light since at this point I knew Jesus was the big fish, and did my best to brighten a yellow spot in the water. As I continued coloring and drawing I did so with a smile knowing that God was bringing out in me one of my favorite scripture passages, Matthew 4:19: “And he said unto them, follow me and I will make you fishers of men”.

Once I realized this, I was a little bummed that I had not left more space behind the large fish for followers. Drawing and painting the little fish proved very difficult with my non-dominant hand some of them look like they can use a little help but then don’t we all!


At this point the yellow brightness was just a blob in the water so I gave it roots and soon it was more plant life. This would be the finishing point and I was excited to have completed it all with my left hand! Even though a 5th grader could do better, I felt accomplished and at ease in my mind.


Looking at the finished product again in portrait mode, I still see that silly looking snail-like creature but now it appears as if the little fish are being held or somewhat shepherded.


When I attended the art workshop I learned some unique things about what colors and lines mean for me. Based on the workshop insights in assigning a color and a brush stroke to an emotion, this painting reveals what I was experiencing during this prayerful moment. The colors of teal, blue, and green represent harmony peace and anticipation. The colors of yellow, orange and black represent hope, sadness and confusion. The purple color represents excitement.


Taking time to reflect on the insights revealed through color and line was amazing and warmed my heart. Jesus is providing harmony; the waters are peaceful and the little bit of green in the coral at the bottom is where the anticipation lies; hope is being revealed in the yellow sea plants that Jesus is swimming towards; confusion lies in the orange of the sea plants at the bottom of the sea; and sadness and frustration are revealed in the black color of the following fish. Then excitement is revealed in the purple branches that are holding up the hope-filled yellow sea plant!


The scripture passage this drawing revealed has always been near and dear to my heart especially when it comes to Spiritual Direction and my answering God’s call. God brought it into my heart today to uplift me and to remind me that He is the one who puts color on my canvas. God knows exactly how I am feeling on this bump in my journey. As long as I trust and follow him with courage, hope and strength in my heart I will be OK.

At this moment for whatever reason , God has asked me to take a step back. This prayerful experience and in this form of journaling has revealed for me that I still have hope in God even amidst the confusion sadness, and my frustration. I know that Jesus is still leading me towards my exciting and hope-filled life!


Thank you for taking the time to read and I hope you get a chuckle at the masterpiece! 😊 Many blessings for a great evening to you all!

Courageous Butterfly

Pressing on While God Does the Shaping


I was feeling ambitious last weekend!  I made homemade pies, well halfway, because I did use canned filling.  I began making a regular old-fashioned pie dough and it went beautifully into my new mini pie pan.  Then I needed to make a gluten free dough due to food allergies.  When you are working with gluten free products for baking, the ingredient which binds the dough together (gluten) is removed and makes the mixture crumbly and difficult to keep together.  I have always struggled with this, but every once in a while I get brave enough to try out a new method.  This recipe called for 1 egg which would act as the binding agent.  So, I decided to let my ambition take over and go for it!

I made both versions of the dough by hand and delighted in feeling the ingredients between my fingers.  I was happy, and peaceful. Even sported my grams apron since pies were one of her favorites to make.  Then it happened…frustration with the gluten free dough.  It was crumbling under the rolling pin.  I added a touch of water and flour for dusting, then began the process again.  I had to re-roll the pie sections over and over because the dough was so fragile and suddenly the fun wanted to go away.

Pressing onward and with several attempts later, the pies were covered and in the oven.  I managed to manipulate the dough just enough that I could get it into the mini pie pan with a few scattered holes.  I took the little sections that broke off and pressed into the pan to cover up them up.  I figured the filling was going to mask any impurities in the dough so I wasn’t too worried.  However, I felt like I needed to get the tops rolled into one fluid piece, because you can’t really hide ugly on the outside of the pie!  In order to accomplish this, I turned on my radio, took a deep breath, and sent a quick nod up to God and Gram in heaven!  Viola! Between the radio and prayer, my body and mind relaxed, frustration eased and I rolled out perfectly smooth pie tops! 

By now you’re wondering where I’m going with this.  Well, as I kept remaking the fragile dough it brought to mind how God had to keep re-making me in my delicate state!  He never gave up, and with His hands He molded and shaped me!  In that, there were periods of struggle and moments of despair sprinkled in between the aha-moments of happy; but look where He has taken me…writing to you about pies!

Enjoy what you make with your hands and when it’s difficult, be happy because God has a lesson in that for you!  Bon appetite!

This post was inspired by Thessalonians 4:11 “and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you.”

How has God shaped and molded you? Share in the comments.

Related Topics/Blogs

Press On, Building 429

Shape, how God has formed me for ministry

Shaped into something wonderful

The Lemon Pies are the gluten free and I appreciated the pun once it was all said and done. You will notice that I made the venting slits too small on the cherry and too large on the lemon, however it did not change the integrity and they were able to keep their shape!