Thank you, Dale Presley! Love your art! This Iris seems so real like just freshly picked from the garden.
When I see an Iris I see and think of a rainbow and the promises of God. You are a promise. I have heard and read that all His benefits belong to each of us that call to Him.
And, thanks for the fig preserves. My favorite! You are so blessed with multi talents and gifts. Thanks for using them and sharing with me!
15 thoughts on “A gift,”
Dale your work is beautiful! May you be blessed. Your first iris birthed on canvas, probably one among many!
Dale, I keep looking and meditating on your work! I love the black background.
Beautiful painting! 🙂
Dale, I love flowers and floral art and your Iris is really lovely! I find looking at those purple and green hues very soothing.
Inspirational, truly, Dale. Your giftings are fruitful and multiplying as is the style in God’s Economy!
When I first looked at your beautiful iris, I couldn’t help but think of a retreat Sara led a few years ago, in North Carolina. It was titled, “Designs of One’s Heart”. I believe Sara had asked us to write about ourselves or what flower we thought we were like? Wendy, another lady at the retreat wrote something beautiful about herself. Wendy had written beautifully about herself. I struggled with what to write about myself. Your painting here and the words written, brought to my mind about my writings, at that retreat. I found what I wrote in my retreat book from that year. Below is what I wrote:
“I am the tall, bright-purple iris, in the garden. On thedailylily.com, I encourage people with words and footnotes, from the Bible. I want people to know Jesus and to make a conscious decision to accept Him and live for Him. When I walk out of the garden, I use my powdered root-stick, (nurse’s training) to help restore health to the sick and afflicted. I try to keep in mind that every person I care for is someone’s mother, father,brother, sister, and Jesus loves them and wants them to be saved.”
I had this written on the back of my paper, and some of it came right from Sara’s retreat book that year.
“I believe I was told at last years retreat that I was an iris. I pulled out the retreat book, from last year and found that Iris has over 200 species and that you will find all the colors of the “Rainbow”. The iris has sword-shaped leaves. It has 3 petals, 3 stamens, and a single pistil. The powdered root-stick of some is used in the manufacture of perfumes and tooth powders; and has been used in some medicines.” (apparently I must has gotten the writing from your teaching book?)
We had 5 retreats in a row, that Sara led. They were excellent and well planned out. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of them and very blessed by the teachings that Sara brought to us, from the Word of God. God has blessed Sara with many gifts, and thank God she will use those gifts, for His glory.
Oh Tammy thank you for sharing those beautiful words on notes from Designs of Ones Heart. They brought back such pleasant and joyfulness of celebrating and talking about Jesus in close fellowship with others who loved Jesus. Sara’s study keeps on teaching us as we review them again and again. I certainly see you as that iris ministrying words of Jesus and health to others wherever you go. When looking back through my retreat book I found I had written a piece entitled Born to Talk To and About My Lord Jesus. Here is that writting:
Talking to the Lord surely was birthed in me. Nothing could detour me even when the umbelical cord wrapped around my neck tried to snuff out my life. As a small child I spoke to the Lord and I knew God heard. At three my grandmother would not eat one bite until I spoke to the Lord and blessed her food. The Lord became my friend. He spoke and I talked to Him as I walked the country fields, nursed birds, and chicks back to health or at least tried. As I grew, praying took on another aspect. Everyone with a need was lifted to the Lord like the baby birds of my past. I prayed, “Please help OH LORD, do you see where they are hurt, can you please fix it Lord.”
Lord as I grew older, I began laying before you and calling out petitions. I would even argue with you as if I were presenting a case before you. I would wrap my hands in your hands for HELP and DIRECTION, O LORD I pleaded.
Lord I have failed at times and you have seen me come to your feet and weep. Lord thank you for being there for me and for the people you have put in my path to pray for. May they walk with you or spring up and choose to walk with you on life’s highway of struggles, deep valleys, and day to day life. May they look to you Lord Jesus and know your love and desire to help and show them the way. May they love you who really loves them like know one else can.
Thank you see for your tender care of us. Amen.
As beautiful as the symbolism of the Iris is the story of each of God’s children. As each gift is connected when in service the rainbow of promise is shown to all. Tammy and Rena both of your stories of service and love encourages us to get up and shine. I am reminded of the saltiness story told by Rena here on another blog. Yet, in the same chapter of Matthew 5, we find; “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.”
When we talk, write, serve and share our light God’s Kingdom is being built. Matthew Henry, Bible Commentary, writes, “Our light must shine, by doing such good works as men may see.”
Shining Lights each of you are!
As I read one of my devotions in the early dark hours of the morn, I could hardly wait to share with my creative friends here. Let us know what you think?
WE WERE VACATIONING in the Jemez Mountains of northern New Mexico. Near our campsite that Fourth of July, day picknickers were playing a heated and energetic softball game. Mary O, my life companion and spouse, struck up a conversation with one of the spectators. In the course of the conversation, she mentioned some distinctively beautiful sculptures she had seen at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center in Albuquerque a few days before. The woman said that her husband had some of his work in that center and asked if Mary O would like to meet him.
When the game was over, the woman introduced them. As they talked, Mary O discovered that this man had created the sculpted pieces she had so admired. He appreciatively received Mary O’s affirmation and asked if she would like to come to his studio to see more of his work. Delighted, she accepted the invitation.
A few days later, she and a friend went to his home and studio. There she viewed more of the beautiful, deeply centered work she had seen earlier and some large pieces of raw stone. She asked the sculptor how he knew what to create from the stone. He told her that he sat and looked at the stone, listening for it to tell him what it wanted to be. In other words, a communion took place between the rock and the sculptor. … The sculptor heeded the “will” of the stone and allowed it to shape his vision and perspective.
As I listened to the story, I mused that this collaborative process was an imaginative, risky, and life-releasing venture.
Likewise, Christian worship is a collaborative engagement over time, in which the living God and the people of God “listen” to each other and are shaped in love around each other. It too is an imaginative, risky, and life-shaping venture.”
– Daniel T. Benedict Jr.
Patterned by Grace
How revealing this devotional is to me. I suppose this is what is meant by “communion of saints” which I realize that I hadn’t actually understood when I prayed it growing up in the Catholic Church. I had thought it meant “taking communion” with all the other Catholics on the globe. And I suppose in a way it could possibly mean that. But this sounds so much more like Jesus the Ultimate Communicator…the Word of God Incarnate.
Thanks for sharing this, Sara. What I am seeing in this line of thinking is that Jesus is the Word. Word(s) are communication devices. They connect people, whether they are the spoken word or the written word; gracious or confrontational. They can be healing or hurting. They can be creative or they can be destructive.
As Sara has been teaching (and preaching) to us about connecting as communicators with others in the Body of Christ and in giving testimony to the Lord to those outside the Church, what we say and what we write must have needs of an ulterior motive. The motive to move people’s hearts and thoughts to the Cross, to Jesus Christ and toward the Kingdom of God. Otherwise they are vanity. Or to use Sara’s subtle phraseology, ‘SELFISH’ words.
I am praying that the words of my mouth and of my computer and the meditations and motives of my heart and of those with whom I have fellowship in the Body of Christ will be acceptable and pleasing to the Lord our God from this time forth.
MG, interesting thoughts on words. I have always loved words that question to gain knowledge. An excellent question to me is like a screen for the window of the soul. An excellent answer attaches the screen to the soul to keep bugs, dust and allergens out. I love Q&A when the both are learners….Words when fitly spoken are like; “golden apples in settings of silver,” said one great philosopher.
What an interesting piece of writing. As I wrote my part above and put the finishing touches to it, I started to read over the answers in the workbook that I had written many years ago. I read an answer that I today know that could not have been possibly been true, but perhaps I thought and wanted it to be so. The question asked, what characteristic of Jesus do you think you have? I had written righteousness. Oh I think no one could possibly have that as only Jesus has that – the flawless Savior of the world. It seems time and life events has shown this one some wisdom and truth. Perhaps I want to have that beautiful characteristic and the Lord Jesus is welding his potters knife and hands to bring a cloak of righteousness to begin to appear through shaping, cleansing the wounds of humanity, and preparing me for the time of eternity. I thank Jesus for being the potter in my life who knows how to bring circumstances into my life to cut away self and create a human who is free to wear the robes He has ready to place at Heaven’s Gate upon the shoulders of anyone who yields to the potter’s knife and hands on earth.
I never thought too much about stones talking, but must be true as this sculptor listened to their request, And Jesus let us know that rocks cry out when others choose to remain silent (Luke 19: 40). A rock rolled away ‘told’ us that a tomb was empty and Jesus was risen. And God’s church is built upon the Rock, Jesus Himself.
Speaking of screens, Sara, I am trying to recall something about a dream…where the screen of the actions/words/motives one’s life, soul, heart, mind was mounted up above the room or the court where all could see? Can you reiterate that dream in its essence?
From what you had shared with us concerning this , a while back in time…. all things will be exposed that had been hidden and that thoughts, words and motives of the heart will be exposed and witnessed by all.
The dream showed table of women having meal and enjoying each other’s company. Chatting away! There was a big overhead screen behind them that showed the truth as they spoke and it was not the words coming from the mouth but the motive of the heart.