Do you ever feel stuck in life? Why you and I need to pay attention when God uses others to encourage and inspire our art and journey…

DECEPTION ISLANDS

Maybe I’m thick or just a little bit scared. Probably a bit of both. And when I give in to fear-based Negative Nellies in my brain I get bogged down by doubts, becoming unproductive.

But God.

Him ever working to keep me on the unique path that is my God-ordained destiny. My calling beckoning my heart that this is the way to go. And often Father calls upon you to help move me along or get me back on track when I’ve veered from the path for a while.

As summer winds down God breathes fire blazing bright as autumn leaves into my soul through love and encouragement from His word, the words, prayers and love of family and friends; and unexpected gifts from three women.

Last month during bible study I requested prayer for clarity and direction regarding my life’s work. Shortly after arriving back home I checked my email and this website. A precious reader named Brandi had taken time to write and I can’t thank her enough.

Her words an answer to prayer impacting my heart so greatly that I framed them for my desk as a reminder to never “stop sharing your song with this world.”

BRANDI QUOTE

Then my Michael and I traveled to the Pacific Northwest at the beginning of September to spend eight days with my son and his lovely girlfriend. And that entire experience touching our hearts so profoundly and with such unimagined encouragement that we continue reflecting on it weeks later.

Originally we planned to rent a cottage near their apartment but an unforeseen financial loss this summer altered our ability to afford it. We asked Ben and Kimmi if we could stay with them in their home and were graciously and enthusiastically affirmed.

Of course you can stay with us. We would love to have you.

We are convinced the immensity of the blessing — so much of it coming from living day by day in community — would have been lost had we the money to pay for the rental cottage.

God took something away so that He could completely blow our minds by giving us something so much better. And their words that week encouraging us, shedding light on our path. And isn’t Father always doing this? Giving us His best yet we like scared silly sheep forgetting to just trust.

4 Langley

BKM FERRY

COUPEVILLE SAIL

MSB EXPANSE 3 use

DECEPTION PASS

DECEPTION ISLANDS

BK HIKE DECEPTION

ME and K

BEST ICE CREAM

KIMMI and mist

RAINBOW

MKS TRAIL WALLACE

OLD MANS BEARD

OLYMPIC SKYLINE

SUNFLOWERS

COTTAGE MBK Kitchen

ME BEN COOKING

BARISTA

B and M CHESS

LOVE

M K B ST EDWARDS

MICHAEL TREE

ME BWEN INSIDE TREE

While we were busy exploring and being inspired by the natural beauty of an area brand new to us both, and sharing God with our kids and their hearts newly opening to Him, my brother-in-love emailed my husband that a painting was en route to me from his wife, a very gifted artist.

Mark wrote that God impressed him to suggest to Kim to just paint, creating three paintings during the next month instead of looking for a job in their new location. He further said that he prayerfully believed the first painting was meant for me.

Are you getting the sense that God is up to something here as He works in each of our lives, and all of us connected through His great Father heart, and everything overlapping as His plans unfold? And all of us, as we follow God’s promptings, touching another, urging them to keep going. All for God’s good plans for us.

We were back a day from our trip when the huge box arrived. And the painting whispered it’s story to my soul before I discovered on the backside of the painting the name assigned to this work.

KIM PAINTING

Becoming. This woman with three faces is herself and each of us, every woman the world over. She is me. She is you. And she is ever morphing as are we once we break free of fear, doubt, unforgiveness or lingering sadness that holds us stagnant, feeling blue and often unmotivated and unloved. Then she warms as her heart and eyes open, gazing with a budding determination into an unknown future. Finally, she glows with inner radiance and hope that comes from above. Having become all that her Father created her to be. Fully alive and able to impact others for good. And there is joy and fullness of love. And she goes forward into the freedom of her God-ordained story, the unique tale of God’s thoughts of her manifesting as she holds His hand, life unfolding with every new breath, every baby step of obedience bringing her more in line with His will. His light in her beaming into a darkened world where hearts are desperate to receive His gift and her’s…

Kim’s gift of art from her heart called “Awakening” inspires and motivates me to keep walking the Way, following God so that I can keep becoming all He intends for me to be, pursuing my calling of writing and mentoring words of truth and love that helps set women like you free to become all you are meant to be.

But God. And I can’t say this enough for it is everything, all in all.

And just this very morning another gift of encouragement from a sweet friend who lost her husband three years ago today.

Keep meaning to tell you that I just love your book “Heart Cry“.  I continue to go to in on days like this weekend. Your book as well as a few others help me to continue to give up my sadness for joy and focus on the journey. Thank you for writing it. I love the line on the last page… “everyone’s unique life story is a whisper of God’s grace”. So very true.

God is always speaking to us, often using others to help direct our paths and reinforce what our true hearts already know but for one reason or another — fear, laziness, a sense of entitlement — don’t pay enough attention to make a marked difference in our lives or the lives of others.

Is God speaking to your heart today about your calling?

Then will you join me in loving God and walking obediently? As we do our paths become clearer step by step and hope propels us to keep sending our gift out into this dark and hurting world regardless of doubts, discouragements or seeming obstacles.

And we fill with purpose overflowing…

Sheila Signature Reduced

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36 thoughts on “Do you ever feel stuck in life? Why you and I need to pay attention when God uses others to encourage and inspire our art and journey…

  1. Wow!!! Shelia, this is such a beautiful post; your words, the pictures of your family, and the painting as well! So very blessed and grateful to visit with you this morning! You are such an incredible being! Peace and infinite blessings to you, Love! *HUGS* 🙂

  2. Sheila, what a beautiful story of how God is leading, moving, and inspiring you. From the unintended (by you, not God) stay at your son’s and the encouraging reader’s comment to the inspiring painting of “Awakening,” the Lord is surely speaking to your heart. Isn’t it wonderful when prayer is answered this way?

    Thanks for sharing your journey in words and photos!

    your neighbor at Playdates with God

  3. Such great words – I sometimes have a conversation with God about where I’m going. Most of the time He just answers – follow me and that is enough. Thanks for sharing your heart. The pictures were great too – we live in the Portland, Oregon area and still thrill at the beauty surrounding us.

    • Thanks, Rebecca, for stopping by from the gorgeous PN!! We LOVED all the natural beauty. And it certainly is vital that we keep following God but sometimes when we probe the depths of our hearts, asking ourselves what would I do if I could do anything at all, we start to perceive a dream lying buried. And when we follow the thread of that dream we get to our next place…Hugs and blessings.

  4. Yes! I join you in walking in obedience. It isn’t always easy, but it’s for our best.
    I just love the fellowship that all the pictures show, and the hidden story they tell.
    Blessings,

    • Thanks, Deborah. We will walk together and lift each other up! Thanks. The pics really dont do ample justice to the beauty of the love and the place that we all shared that week. 🙂 Hugs…

  5. I didn’t know that you were questioning your calling here at your blog, Sheila. I’m so sorry if you’ve gone through a season of discouragement. But it seems like your trip, the dear note your reader wrote and the amazing painting are all God’s gifts of encouragement to get you back on track, sweet friend. I can totally relate to the feelings, though. I often get discouraged and listen to Satan’s whispers that my blog will never really matter in a sea of other amazing bloggers. But I keep hearing the Lord say, just be faithful to persevere and I’ll bless in spiritual ways–which means I may never see the increase or impact! It’s one day at a time engaging our faith in the One who is faithful! Love ya, girlfriend! And LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the photos from your incredible trip. Thanks so much for sharing! 🙂

    • Hello dear friend…YES this summer I was whining a bit and questioning and GOD IS FAITHFUL and has reassured me several times over that I AM on the right path!! 🙂 So I have reduced my blogging and am purposing to write ONLY what I feel in my heart lead to write. And God can and will take care of all the details. We had such an AMAZING time with Ben and Kimmi. It was indeed incredible and we are VERY GRATEFUL. Thanks for stopping by. Hugs, blessings and lots of love…

  6. Oh Sheila … thanks for sharing all those pictures of your journey, sharing your kids and your heart. What a truly delightful visit for you there … and for me, here, today, too.

    So rich, so good. God is good.

  7. Sheila, what a beautiful post and breathtaking photos! That art piece speaks volumes. It is beautiful! I’m so glad I stopped by today, for you have encouraged me. 🙂

  8. Wow, I don’t blame you for framing that note! What an encouragement! And I loved the pictures on your post today.
    Thanks for this encouraging post. I’m sure it will encourage other bloggers. I know that there are days when I wonder why I put so much time into writing. So thankful for my husband and others who encourage me to keep at it!

    • We do need encouragements and the keeping of them, like little Jordan stones, to remind us of God’s call on our lives and His faithfulness. Thanks for adding to the conversation, Michele. Blessings…

  9. Precious, Sheila. Your words and the testimony of God’s faithfulness in providing for you -So Much!! His gifts are abundantly more than we imagine they could be : ) Praying for you and sharing your joy.

  10. So happy I’m visiting, I just love this post, it speaks to me in so many ways–I’m in transition with my work..I’m a creative person/filmmaker/writer..but seeking ‘new’ ..your words inspire me, how God’s grace comes in beautiful ways as you share, through loved ones, art, community,..all inspiring us to keep on with God’s unfolding plan for us! So lovely! Visiting from next door #wifeywednesday!

  11. How fun to be next to you at SDG and to see these photos of you enjoying our beautiful Pacific Northwest! I related to much of your inward journey, and your explanation of the painting applied to me in many ways as well.

  12. What a beautiful way in which God interrupts our path and lets us see the beauty of life He has for us. It sounds like God is doing some great things in your life. That’s awesome! Thanks for sharing the beautiful pics with us along your journey! Stopping by from LiveFree Thursday ~ your neighbor, Rachel

  13. I found your blog on #TellHisStory and I am so glad I did! I can relate to the sweet words of encouragement that come at just the right time, from readers that I didn’t even know were there.

    I love how God orchestrated your visit with your son! God is so good like that 🙂

  14. I love it when we ask God to reveal Himself in our lives and He does it in such surprising ways. It seems as though He has shown up in abundance and affirmed and confirmed where He wants you to be, using the gifts He has given you. So thankful for your sharing and encouragement!

  15. Sheila, I’m overcome by the beauty in this post. I LOVE it all! The amazing ways in which God is weaving His truth and writing His story in your heart and life, the wonderful joyous photographs, and the thing that captivated me most of all – those awesome affirming words on the back of Kim’s fabulous painting. Oh how I’d love to have them framed! They speak deep into this woman’s soul, as they no doubt do for others.
    It’s so good to see you back after your break. And to see you looking and sounding so radiant too. May God continue to pour out His goodness and blessings in abundance upon you and your loved ones. 🙂 Xx

    • Thank you so much, Joy. You are so kind and encouraging.Yes,God has been confirming much and yes it was a trip full of overwhelming joy. And the only word on the back of the painting was “Awakening.” The words in itals was the story the painting “whispered” to my heart. It was what I felt as I looked at the painting. So glad they spoke to you. May God bless you and all those you love tremendously. You are one of His gifts to me…Hugs and blessings.

  16. When born and raised in the western portion of Washington… with the Columbia River, the Pacific Ocean, the Puget Sound areas, and the park stretches with the trees to walk through… and I’ve been out there many times to be family with family and friends and I always love being in any of the places. I’m also a Mount Rainier addict. Even though I’ve used it on my blog, I’ve been out of there, officially, since I was 23. Then living in California, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Uganda, and driving around a lot of other places. But I’m to the NW as often as possible, but now with my age thing, etc., I can’t go there are usual at all. Anyhow, you sure grabbed my attention. I LOVED this!! Thank you.

    • Good morning Joanne — I’m sure glad my post brought back some wonderful memories for you of your time in the Pacific Northwest. It certainly is breathtakingly beautiful. We only caught a glimpse of Rainier en route to the airport home but it was SPECTACULAR, and that from a distance. We can’t wait to visit next time. Blessings of joy and peace and thanks for stopping by and sharing…

      • Glad you liked it. AND glad you saw Mt. Rainier, b/c whether on the roads or the airplane I’ve taken PILES of photos over the years. I hope to see Mt. Rainier again even if I’m on my way to heaven. DUH! In spite of being around our nation, in Uganda, Costa Rica, Morocco, England, and France, loving much, but my favorite is still Rainier. Know so much. Now I’ll shut up. Thanks for putting with my info pieces. Bless you.

        • LOVED seeing Rainier. Can’t wait to set foot or tire on it someday!! And THANKS for sharing your comments. I enjoy hearing of all your travels and knowing that Rainier is your favorite. Blessings…

  17. Wow, what a wonderful post of God’s faithfulness. He is so good to send encouragement our way right when we need it. May God bless you and your blog. Kathi