Sunday, February 28, 2021

Shine your Light

I have always been fascinated with lighthouses.  I visit them whenever I get a chance, and have sketched a half dozen or so, with four being posted in my last four years of my Lenten series on my blog.  

This one, in San Pedro, California was built in 1926, following years of complaints from  shippers about the dangerous waters around the Palos Verdes Peninsula.  

For me, a lighthouse is representative of what God can be for us.  He will use his light to guide us into and out of the rough seas of our lives.  

"I am the light of the world.  
Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, 
but will have the light of life."  
John 8:12

Likewise, as Christians, we have opportunities to shine our light for others to see God's love through us.  Who is watching you?  Children, Grandchildren, Co-workers, Neighbors?  

Reflecting on my first Lenten post on Ash Wednesday... by being present, I am more open to understanding why and where God has placed me, and by being still and listening to the voice of the holy spirit with in me, I am able to recognize what I am to do in this moment.

"Use me to shine your light into the darkest places of this world."

Monday, February 22, 2021

Spread your wings.. and fly!

Do you sometimes feel like you've been stuck in a cocoon?  This past week both literally and figuratively if you've been stuck in the deep freeze in Texas like me.   
When normal life stops like this, it gives me time to think about my "life" and to wonder if I am the person I'm meant to be? 

In the most recent newsletter from the Women's Ministries of TWUMC, my friend Grace Ono wrote this:


"During the season of Lent, we remember Jesus' journey to the cross.  We set this time aside to reflect upon Jesus’ sacrifice for the redemption of the World. Every winter, I look forward to the Lenten season. In this time, I invite God to continue shaping me in to the version of self He intended. Our relationship deepens and I find myself becoming even more dependent upon Him."
God loves us more than we can ever imagine.  
As Christians, we are created in Christ's image, we have been filled with the Holy Spirit and will have everlasting life.  What could be better than that?  
Our time has come to jump for joy, spread our wings and soar to new heights!  
And to share the love of Christ to the world together.


"Therefore if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:  the old has gone, the new has come!" 
2 Corinthians 5:17 


Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Come to Me

 Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent 2021.  Our world has changed in this past year, but our Father in heaven has not.  Lent is a season of reflection and preparation for Easter Sunday and I feel blessed to be able to offer you my 5th Series of art, scripture along with a mini message to inspire you and hopefully brighten your days.

Some of my best ideas of what to include in this series come at 3 am, when my body is rested and my mind is quiet.  Rest is highly under-rated in our world today.  But, during the next six weeks I am going to strive to be less busy and to stay in the present.  

I hope you'll join me in this journey

Please forward this e-mail to friends or family that you think would enjoy receiving this too.  I will be posting weekly-ish and they can sign up on my website to receive these blog posts directly via e-mail:
On the home page they can input their e-mail address into the box on the right side of the page just under my "Hello!"  They will receive a confirmation e-mail that they must reply to and that's it!

Monday, February 8, 2021

Texas Mission and a sneak peak!

San Francisco de La Espada,
founded in 1690

One of my favorite chapters in Michener's TEXAS was about the founding and the history of the Missions scattered across South Texas, particularly around San Antonio.  I haven't visited them in person yet, but when I do, I'm sure that will be followed by a new series of art.

This Mission, founded near Weches, TX as San Francisco de Los Tejas in 1690 by Spain was built to convert the Native Americans to Christianity with three priests and three soldiers assigned to the task.  It was moved to the San Antonio River in 1731 and renamed San Francisco de La Espada.  The church was completed in 1756 and is one of four Missions in the San Antonio Missions National Historic Park. 

The shape of Espada's doorway is unique and over the years many theories have tried to explain it's distinctive shape:  Moorish-influenced design, a scaled back adaptation to budget changes during the work or mistaken assembly by masons who were not the original stonecutters.  I like #3 the best... can't you just imagine these masons trying to put this together like a puzzle without a plan?

I did this sketch last fall, but have adapted it a bit and added some color for my 2021 Lent Series starting next week! This will be my 5th year to post for Lent and I have all new artwork ready to go.  I am excited to share it with you!


Monday, February 1, 2021

Austin: Bridges, Bats and Buildings

Texas Landmarks and Legends

The South Congress Bridge in Austin was completed in 1910, crossing at that time the Colorado River.  In 1960 the dam was built and created Lady Bird Lake.    In 2006 the bridge was renamed the Ann W. Richards Congress Bridge for the 45th Governor of Texas.  

What you'll find tucked under the bridge is what makes it so special!  There, you'll find the home to 1.5 million Mexican Free Tailed Bats.  The worlds largest bat colony.  Between March and November they put on quite a show for about an hour at dusk!  You can watch them take off toward their "night job" of consuming 20-30,000 insects each evening where they fly up to 60 mph and can go two miles high.  

Did you know that the Texas State Capitol is the largest state capitol in the USA?
Of course it is.... Everything's Bigger in Texas!!

The Goddess of Liberty sits at the top and because of this extension, it makes it even taller than the US Capitol.

This was the third Capitol of Texas:

The first elected government of Texas was in 1836 as The Republic of Texas.  Several different towns served as the capitol until finally settling in Austin in 1844.   Texas was admitted into the Union in December of 1849 and plans were made for a bigger and better seat of government.

The second, built in 1853 was destroyed by fire in 1881.

The "new" Capitol building was completed in 1888.  Because the State was financially broke during the construction, the builders, recruited from Iowa, were paid with what was considered to be the largest "barter transaction" at the time.   Those 3 million acres of land are now home to the largest cattle ranch in the world.   Legend has it that a nearby track of land that was not donated to them, but instead to University of Texas and it became the largest oil field in Texas.

Replica of the 1836 capitol in West Columbia, TX