Tag Archives: #31daysofcoloringhope

How to Live as a Kingdom Creative


Creativity always has been and always will be a huge part of my life.

I began recognizing how I was made by the time I reached five, and I never looked back. I may not have understood what that would ultimately mean for my life or how the “artist” would manifest itself, but I never gave up trying. When I would play dolls with friends, it was all about setting up the house and dressing the dolls. What typically comes after was not something I was especially interested in.  I liked the act of creating a reality for the “characters” we played with. Of forming pleasant surroundings for them to do life. Their setting and how it would affect them was primary to my thought process, and once the stage was set, the remainder of the activity ceased to be attractive. I just wanted to create.

Have you ever dreamed of being creative, but just didn’t know where to start?

Have you looked at a blank canvas, and the surging images that once flowed through your mind simply disappear in a flash of gesso-ed white?

This is the story of most creatives – even the working ones, at times. Our muse decides to take a vacation, and we are left holding the brush so to speak. But it doesn’t have to be like this.

We were all, every one of us, made to be Kingdom Creatives. The ability to manifest reality has been implanted in our DNA. We each simply have a different artistic gift. Discovering what yours is can be as simple as picking up a pen to jot what has appeared in your heart and mind or dipping a brush into a colorful array of paint on a palette.

Or you may instead struggle to understand its reality.

Seeing God in the laundry can be a challenge – but maybe you have managed to form a routine that transcends the everyday. I don’t know what your creative reality looks like, but I am sure that you have one.

When I first sat down to draw the pictures that would eventually become “31 Days of Coloring HOPE”, I did not have any ambitions to publish a coloring book.  But something happened in the midst of the sketching: the Holy Spirit showed up. Words began to manifest within the pictures. Words of hope and life. Words that encourage the reader to look just a little bit deeper. It became an expression of God’s love and Hope to those whom He wanted to reach.

God manifests Himself in the world in infinite ways. He is the air we breathe and the food we eat. He is in trees that grow beside the road, and in the very ground we walk upon. He is all and everywhere, therefore it could be argued that everything we do and are, contains His creative Spirit.

When Jesus talked about the Holy Spirit in scripture, he referred to it as the helper. Acts 1:8- Here’s the knowledge you need: you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you. And you will be My witnesses, first here….then beyond.

The Holy Spirit is there to help and to empower you to be that creative you were always meant to be.  To go beyond the common and into the divine. To step out and shine God’s light in the world through powerful means. The things you are unable to do on your own? The Holy Spirit will empower you. {He} will give you the ideas and the abilities required to shine that light into the world around you.  Maybe that means through the use of art, maybe not.  Possibly you will be the conduit to share another’s art, and through it, encourage hope and abundant life.

Yes, you were made to be a Kingdom Creative

Even if you do not aspire to craft great works of art that doesn’t  mean that you can’t impart some of the beauty that the creator endowed you with, each day as you lean into it. Keep a journal, doodle a flower, sing a song. Be a part of the incredible world that God has formed around you.

Engage with it

Learn from it

Embrace it

And aspire to love your art – no matter what that means for you


creative-faith-logoComing Dec. 1st, 2016:  A new website filled with inspiration, tutorials, encouragement and classes. Step into the pages of scripture and be the Kingdom Creative you were always meant to be.

  • Learn to shine your light in more creative ways
  • Engage in artful practices that will take even the non-artist to a new level of creativity
  • Be encouraged to see the beauty in your surroundings
  • Experience an artist’s journey through tales of true life faith-filled art.

Sign up now so you don’t miss a thing!


Updates on the unveiling of this new site  will come right to your inbox as they become available.  As a free bonus for signing up, you will receive a 31 Days of Coloring HOPE pdf to download, color, and share with others around you.  Thank you for your interest in  becoming a conduit of light for the Kingdom!


Moving forward

write-31-days-buttonWhen I originally sat down to start drawing the pictures that eventually became 31 days of coloring HOPE, I had no idea it would become a book. The process of creating has always been just something that I did in the extra moments of my day. But as the pictures began to appear on the page, and the words with them, I knew that it would not be something that I could keep to myself.

This world needs HOPE

It needs to see that even in the midst of the chaos that is increasingly the norm, there is something there that can be a foundation for us to hold to, that no matter what, that foundation will remain steady while everything around it moves, and changes, and crumbles. That constant is God. He always has been, and always will be. There isn’t anything that will ever change that. And I don’t know about you, but I find that to be a comforting thought. It brings me hope that there is something immovable that loves me –and that too will never change.

Sharing the hope we have, is like giving life to a dying world.

Moving forward in the days to come, I would love to explore with you the ways that we can share this hope, how we might change the world around us with all of the creative things that we have been equipped with.

Now that October is over, and Write31 Days completed, we are back to a more laid back posting experience. Monday’s will bring new thoughts, experiences, and maybe even a couple of giveaways. I hope that you enjoyed the last 31 days of exploring and coloring words of HOPE.

If you are interested in sharing  hope, please visit the book page to purchase a physical copy as well as downloads, bookmarks, postcards or a boxed set of cards to color.

Now for the big winner!  I promised to give away the whole set of cards that were colored for this series of posts by the author – me 🙂

Congratulations: Virginia Cradlebaugh! Thank you for all of your awesome comments and for spending time with me this month. I hope that you will stick around and explore the creative side of faith with us beginning next Monday. You will receive an email from me shortly to set up where to send your cards.

Thank you all for your presence over the last month.  It was an honor to share with you:)


The Wisdom of the Elves – Write 31:Day 30

listenclick on picture to download the free pdf

If you Listen closely, you can hear the whisper of your soul. That is the voice of God speaking to you. Pay attention – His words are life! {Deuteronomy 13:4}

The world is changed

I feel it in the water

I feel it in the earth

I smell it in the air

Much that once was is lost, for none now live who remember it.

Okay – my geek is showing 🙂 I just returned from a Lord of the Rings Marathon, and I am filled with the melodies of its amazing soundtracks. As I thought this morning about what I was going to write for the word LISTEN, Galadriel came most readily to mind. Her prologue into this amazing story is not only haunting, but intuitive., and full of wisdom. (watch the short video clip above if you don’t know what I am talking about – all of you who have managed to avoid the power of the one ring 😉 She listens to the sounds of the earth and the reverberations of her spirit. She listens closely – and therefore sees and hears and feels what many others do not.

Are you listening?

If you listen closely you can hear the whisper of your soul – the murmur of your spirit.

The “voice” of God can manifest itself in so many ways. It can be through the words of a friend or scripture, a particularly memorable dream, or even a great movie or song.

God chooses His delivery creatively through the means that most speak to you.  I am particularly alert in the midst of story and music.  I love to find the deeper meanings hidden within them, draw parallels to my own life and experiences. They are a conduit for me to hear, especially with music, because it is then that my inner ear is most tuned to something beyond the noise happening around me. Sometimes when I need to quiet the talking within, I don some headphones and plug into meaningful music, preferably something without lyrics so that God’s words can enter in between the notes, full and gentle. Caressing my mind and filling my soul.

The prophet Elijah knew this intimately. He was a man prone to highs and lows. Experiencing the presence of God one moment, only to be plunged into fear the next. Does that sound familiar to you at all?  It does me.

There are days that I am so certain of His presence, so sure of His anointing. The highs climb to unfathomable heights. But it doesn’t take much for the enemy to plant a little seed of doubt within me. And sometimes I listen to those as well.

But when I hear the faint whisperings in my heart, like a gentle wind on a mountain top,  I stop and LISTEN. Like Elijah, I look for the presence of God, and when I  hear His whispers, His words of love and presence, HOPE finds a place in my heart.

2listenDid you like this post? Please consider sharing it with a friend.  Post it on your facebook page, twitter feed, pinterest, or post your colored picture on instagram…where ever you think someone can use a little HOPE.

As a little added bonus: All comments on the write 31 days posts will be entered to win all of the colored cards for this series. These are colored by hand (by me :)and ready to give. The winner will be announced in November. Good luck 🙂

Don’t forget to click on the picture at the top of the page to download the pdf version of the LISTEN picture.  Color it and share, or enjoy for yourself.

God bless your day!

TRUST – Write 31:Day 7


“Trust is knowing that no matter what we see before us, the path is sure and leads to God’s side. He is faithful.” {2 Corinthians 5:7}

I have trust issues

Most people probably do

It only takes one or two bad experiences to cause a callous to form in any given area. I remember when my daughter was only four, we had a wood stove in our house as the central source of heat in winter. I constantly worried and fretted over the possibility of burns. At four years old, children are immensely curious and want to touch everything. I followed her around everywhere redirecting her attention to other things when she appeared to be entirely too interested in the stove.

Despite all my efforts, one day she grabbed hold of the door while I was stuffing more wood inside. Let’s just say, she never touched it again. It was just a quick touch so the burn wasn’t too severe, but it definitely left a mark on her hand -and her heart.  She learned that trusting her own desires would fail, but that trusting her parent’s love for her was fail proof.

The years that followed that incident unfortunately brought with it more choices, more experiences, more hurts – more callouses. The troubles she endured, both deserved and unmerited, changed her. Each hurtful word rubbing a tender portion of her heart until a thick skin formed. Unfulfilled desires hardening the HOPE solid within her. Till she couldn’t see it any longer.

I’ve formed callouses of my own. Nothing like a lifetime of anger and disappointment to thicken up that thin skin of yours. Can you relate?

Then I met my Savior. And I learned to trust that:

  • No matter what happens with others, He will always be there for me.
  • Regardless of what my reality is now, He has an awesome future all planned out.
  • Even if this world rejects me, He has a seat saved for me right by his side.
  • When it appears no one else loves me, He does – and that will never end.

We don’t need to hold on to our trust issues. Put your trust where it belongs: in an ever-loving, faithful, unchanging God –and He will turn your stony heart back into one of flesh and restore HOPE to your life.


2trustDid you like this post? Please consider sharing it with a friend.  Post it on your facebook page, twitter feed, pinterest, or post your colored picture on instagram…where ever you think someone can use a little HOPE. Don’t forget to click on the picture above to download the pdf version of the HOPE picture.  Color and share, or enjoy yourself.

God bless your day!

MIRACLES – Write 31:Day3


“Miracles…are possible when you leave it all up to God. Letting go of our own “can do” attitude gives Him room to work.” {Mark 10:27}

I’m a DIY girl, especially if it is something creative, or requires massive amounts of money that I simply don’t have. About 17 years ago my husband and I bought an almost 200 year old house.  Needless to say, it was going to require some work.  My then young self said, “We can do this!” 17 years later we still stand around scratching our heads wondering how in the world we got ourselves into this.  it has been not only a labor of love, but  also of frustration, anger and a drain both mentally and financially. My husband often remarks how we could have probably built an entirely new house for the amount of time and money that we have invested.

Yet still we persist.

As much as I would like it all to be done, I have learned, and continue to learn, some very important lessons in the process. Mainly that when I am totally at the end of my strength and ability to accomplish something…

God shows up.

Most recently we had decided to replace a portion of the roof that had been leaking. We had been patching portions as we found them over the last couple of years, but no matter what we put on, the winter thaws and relentless spring rains continued to push the water into areas it didn’t belong. To say that we had reached the end of our rope would be an understatement.

We knew a new roof had to be put on, so in an effort to save money, we began to plan what to use and how to proceed with that plan for this small area of the roof.  Even doing the work ourselves promised to be more than we could handle.

Then my husband felt a small drip hit the top of his head…on the other side of the roof. The diagnosis was catastrophic. We would need a whole new roof.


What started as a $4,000 project, quickly became a $22,000 impossibility.

As we started to look for financing, the thought of taking on a payment like that was depressing. Work for me is sporadic and much of what I do doesn’t bring the benefit of money to the family at all. But this was the home that God had given us to take care of. And doing that, we feel, is an act of worship.

We found financing through a couple of different options and the roof was replaced. And although we have had to tighten belts, I know that God has brought us to this place of reliance for a reason. Through our own strength and ability to provide, we would never see the everyday miracles that happen in our lives. The things we count as luck or coincidence, are often the very things we miss.

The money that shows up out of nowhere, right when you need it

The rain that holds off until you have finished planting your rose hedge (Thanks God!)

The work that comes in right on time, just as bills come due

The friend who delivers a meal on the very day you needed it most

These are everyday miracles

Do you recognize them?

If we are constantly trying to accomplish everything on our own, not only do we miss out on what He can and does do in our lives, but also get in the  way of the huge supernatural miracles that He wants to do.

Do you need a “feed the 5000 with 2 loaves” moment in your life?  He desires to give it to you. Maybe what you need to do is nothing. Stand back and let Him work.

It may not always look as we expect or would like it to, but if we can keep our eyes open I believe we will see the everyday miracles, and then the supernatural ones aren’t far behind.

I don’t know about you, but that gives me HOPE.

Did you like this post? There are 28 more to come in October. Whew! that is going to be a lot of writing for me, and reading for you.  I promise to try to keep some short, some sweet, but all inspirational to go out and offer some hope to the world around you.

If you liked this, please consider sharing it with a friend.  Post it on your facebook page, twitter feed, pinterest, instagram…where ever you think someone can use a little HOPE. Don’t forget to click on the picture above to download the pdf version of the HOPE picture.  Color and share, or enjoy yourself.


Write 31 Days of October


Are you joining in?

Whether you are a writer or a reader, the Write 31 Days activity can be incredibly fulfilling. Join me as I extend a bit of hope using picture,  video, song and a little bit of art.

Each day will feature a word picture from my recently published coloring book 31 Days of Coloring HOPE, for you to download, color and share with someone in your life. Whether you have purchased the book or not, this will be an extraordinary experience for the reader, the artist, or seeker.

You may print off as many as you like, to color and give away, but you may not assemble them for resale. The pictures will be available for the month of October only.

Please know my heart here

This is for you to color and keep, or share with those who need to experience hope.  If you feel so inclined to purchase a copy of my book, know that all of the proceeds from it will purchase more books as well as colored pencils to be given to shelters, rehabs, hospitals, and other places that offer hope to those who need it, free of charge. Please consider joining me in an effort to offer hope to the world through word and color.  You can find the links for purchase here.

I look forward to your comments each day. They offer hope to me as an artist, that there are others out there that care as I do.

I hope that you will all join me.

{sign up for the series of posts using the “follow me” button to your right}

with a hopeful heart,