Archives For Scripture Pictures

Live To The Hilt

Renee Ann Smith —  August 10, 2015 — 15 Comments

Sometimes it feels like life has grown complicated.

My daily tasks are simple enough. Once I’ve done some planning, I could walk through my days without thinking or feeling much.

And that’s the problem.

I don’t want to just  go through the motions and mark time from now until Jesus calls me home.

Jim Elliot said, “Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God.”

Jim Elliot Wherever you are be all there

But this world is a messy place. Experiencing all the highs & lows, allowing our feelings to be touched by the heartaches & hurts of those around us, can be painful and exhausting.

Many people end up doing whatever it takes to avoid feeling the guilt, loneliness, despair, rejection, fear, and regret that seem to characterize life. Whether it’s drowning their sorrows or closing their hearts off in a safe, little bubble.

It’s tough to be in the world but not of it.

On one hand, God put eternity in our hearts and we long for . . . 

Beauty that will never fade

Love that will never die

Peace and hope and happy

Enough to fill every empty place inside us.

Yet we live in this transitory world, and just like fall turns to winter, people disappoint us, pleasures come and go, kids grow up and move on . . .

Sometimes the good-byes to be said at the end discourage us from even beginning.

We yearn to freeze our best moments and hold them close. We yearn for joys that last. 

Yet we feel them slipping through our fingers.

Fortunately, God has made a way for us to straddle both words.

Because in Jesus, time and eternity meet.

He is 100 percent God, made the world, knew us before we were born, and even appeared in the Old Testament.

Yet He came as a man. He lived in this world as an eternal being limited by a human body. He ate, slept, hungered, wept, laughed, grew weary, felt pain . . . just as we do.

And this God-Man, who knows our frames and guards our hearts, helps us embrace life without fear.

In Him, we find balance, a soothing balm, a buoy to reach for when we’re sinking.

He saturates our days with eternal value as we navigate this world

And afterwards receives us into glory.

Amen.

Heaven Peter Kreeft

Let’s look for glimpses of glory today. Blessings, friends!

**Photo Backstory: I create my graphics from iPhone pics or free images from sites like Unsplash & Death to Stock Photo plus the effects at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass them on!
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When We Hurt Beth MooreSometimes when we’re hurting, we wish for a God whose arms we can feel and voice we can hear.

But Martha and Mary’s story reminds me that if Jesus were still on earth, His ability to be physically with each one of us would be severely limited.

Part of the faith journey is learning to live in the world of the spirit,

Where God’s comfort comes to our souls in a miraculous work of grace

That is beyond what I can explain or describe.

During the times when I have hurt the most, God has used His faithful servants and His Word and His peace that passes understanding to show me His heart for me.

Here are some favorite verses to immerse myself in during those times. What are some of your favorites?

From Psalm 34 . . .

“The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are attentive to their cry.” (vs. 15)

“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them. He delivers them from all their troubles.” (vs. 17)

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” (vs. 18)

“The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all.” (vs 19)

“The Lord will rescue his servants. No one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.” (vs. 21)

Psalms 73:26: “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

Isaiah 41:10: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

Philippians 4:6&7: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

I love how those Philippians verses sound in The Message: “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns.

Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down.

It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”

Psalm 139:16: “Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth. All the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.”

Psalm 139:9&10: “If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast.”

Psalm 139 God Knew me at conception

And, of course, I can rarely end a post without sharing some quotes! I appreciate these wise words from a man who has been through dark times himself . . .

“Your most profound and intimate experiences of worship will likely be in your darkest days,

When your heart is broken,

When you feel abandoned,

When you’re out of options,

When the pain is great and you turn to God alone.” ~Rick Warren

I’m thankful that God understands our hearts so well and makes sure to show us again & again that we can trust His.

Thanks for stopping by today. Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I create my graphics from iPhone pics or free images from sites like Unsplash & Death to Stock Photo plus the effects at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass them on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
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If you’ve spent any time around here, you can tell that I enjoy playing with graphics—especially when it comes to sharing quotes.

I rely on God-breathed Scripture to convict and change me. But wise words hold power as well.

Many times in my life God has used the words of others to open my eyes to His truth or apply it to my life in a new way.

So I often feel compelled to pass those quotes on in hopes that they will bless and encourage others.

My tools of choice for creating graphics have been iPhone pics, the wonderful photos from Unsplash—which has a very open license (The site says, “Do whatever you want.”)—and, of course, PicMonkey, a site which lets me edit to my heart’s content.

With PicMonkey, I usually begin by cropping my photo to be square or Pinterest-pin shaped. (Graphics that are wider than they are tall don’t seem to show up well on my favorite sites—my blog, Pinterest & Facebook.)

While at Basic Edits, I check to see if my graphic needs to be sharpened, over-exposed, under-exposed, or color-enhanced—whatever will complement the quote I have in mind.

Then I click on Effects, where I can age my graphic, posterize it, turn it into a Poloroid, soften the focus, etc.

What’s nice about PicMonkey is that the arrows at the top of the pic always allow me to undo what I have done. Also, I can save my work along the way in case there’s a really great look I want to use at a later time.

Once I’ve played with Effects, I click on Text and copy & paste my quotes onto the graphic. Once I’ve done that I can change the alignment, color, and size of the words.

Then I get to play with the fonts. Some fonts allow me to “Bold” or “Italicize” them. Wider fonts are great for layering, which enables me to give the words a 2-D look.

My last step is adding a Frame. I pretty much always finish with Drop Shadow—even if I’ve used another frame before that. I feel like Drop Shadow makes my graphic “pop” when on my blog or in the Facebook stream.

***Recently, I discovered a new place to grab free graphics: Death to Stock Photo. I signed up for the free tier and have received two batches of photos so far.

Just click on the graphic to view sharing choices.

Charles Spurgeon qutoes Take a stand on the Bible

For this great Charles Spurgeon quote, I layered italicized Roman Antique font, white over black. The background originally looked like this before I cropped, enhanced & posterized. (I resized it for this post. You can grab it full-sized from the Unsplash site.)

Unsplash free graphic

Lifting othersHere, I layered the Special Elite font, white over black. The background originally looked like this before I cropped & enhanced. (I resized it for this post. You can grab it full-sized from the Unsplash site.)

Unsplash free graphic 2

Death to Stock Photo

The font for this graphic is Cardo bold. The graphic originally looked like this before I cropped, enhanced & posterized. (I resized it for this post. You can grab it full-sized by signing up to receive emails from Death to Stock Photo.)

Death to Stock Photos

I hope you’ve been encouraged by the quotes or helped by the how-to tips.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I created these graphics with free images from Unsplash & Death to Stock Photo plus the effects at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass them on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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Usually by this time in the school year—after class trips in the heat and humidity and helping kids struggle through final exams and tackling inventory and paper work and keep track of all the details regarding graduation—I’m just plain tired and in great need of an attitude adjustment.

Proverbs 25:11 says, “Like apples of gold in settings of silver
Is a word spoken in right circumstances.” So I Iook to the wise words of godly men and women to help readjust my thinking and refresh my heart.

Here are five of my recent favorites for changing my perspective on life:

Fear Anxiety Worry

“Take a breath. It’s not a bad life, just a bad day.”

(Click to Tweet)

Prayer Spurgeon quotes“Prayer moves the hand that moves the world.” ~Charles Spurgeon~

(Click to Tweet)

Jim Elliot quotes God's Will

“God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him.” ~Jim Elliot~

(Click to Tweet)

George Mueller quotes sacrifice service

“God judges what we give by what we keep.” ~George Mueller~

(Click to Tweet)

C. S. Lewis quotes life God Christianity

“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” ~C. S. Lewis~

(Click to Tweet)

I’m praying that at least one of these quotes will be an encouragement to you. Thanks for  by stopping by today! Blessings, friends!

***This week the world said good-bye to one of the most influential Christian women of the 20th century, Elisabeth Elliot. Her life and writings greatly shaped my faith journey. Follow this link to view the posts I wrote about this humble servant of the Lord.

Elisabeth Elliot on to glory

***Photo Backstory: I created these graphics with free images from Unsplash plus the effects at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass them on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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Psalm 37(Click to Tweet)

Delight yourself in the Lord & He will shape the desires of your heart. ~Psalm 37:4~

For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. ~Matthew 6:21~

Trust in the Lord with all your heart & lean not on your own understanding. ~Proverbs 3:5~

Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. ~Proverbs 4:23~

My son, give Me your heart & let your eyes keep my ways. ~Proverbs 23:26~

May the words of my mouth & the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock & my Redeemer. ~Psalm 19:14~

May we trust Him with our hearts now & always. Thanks for  by stopping by today! Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I created this graphics with a free image from Unsplash plus the effects at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass it on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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In Over Your Head

Renee Ann Smith —  April 8, 2015 — 11 Comments

Isaiah 43 In Over Your Head

(Click to Tweet)

~Isaiah 43:2-4~

When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
    When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
    It won’t be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
    The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
I paid a huge price for you:
    All of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in!
That’s how much you mean to me!
    That’s how much I love you!
I’d sell off the whole world to get you back,
    Trade the creation just for you.

I love knowing that God’s my personal lifeguard, don’t you? Maybe we can even let the promises in these verses make us be brave.

May we continue to strengthen each other for what lies ahead on this awesome faith journey. Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I created this graphic with an image from Unsplash and the effects and overlays at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass it on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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Light

Renee Ann Smith —  March 11, 2015 — 11 Comments

God Is Light

(Click to Tweet)

“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life [Jesus].

“The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We write this to make our joy complete.

“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all.” ~I John 1:1-5~

“[God] You are radiant with light, more majestic than mountains rich with game.” ~Psalm 76:4~

“The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” ~Proverbs 4:18~

According to Merriam Webster, light is ‘the natural agent that stimulates sight and makes things visible.’

I love that—because ever since God uttered, “Let there be light,” that’s what He’s been doing for us—cutting through the gloom of this dark world to open our eyes to what’s true & lasting. He is light!

May we continue to strengthen each other for what lies ahead on this awesome faith journey. Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I created this graphic with an image from Unsplash and the effects—especially posterize—and overlays at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass it on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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Greater

Renee Ann Smith —  March 9, 2015 — 14 Comments

Who can forget the haunting image from a few weeks back—Libya’s 21 Christian martyrs clothed in orange jumpsuits and kneeling before their masked executioners?

Their names now belong with those which are more familiar to me, other brave ones who also faced Satan’s wrath head on in one way or another . . .

Amy Carmichael . . . Corrie Ten Boom . . . Darlene Deibler Rose . . . Eric Liddell . . . Dietrich Bonhoeffer . . . Jim Elliot . . . Nate Saint . . .

Satan wages war against all such because they are children of the one true King.

He targets them to unseat Him.

But to no eternal avail.

For the God who delights in using the weak and foolish things of the world to shame the wise and powerful, sets Satan’s malicious plans to naught through the lives of His precious children.

Such as these “toppled kingdoms, made justice work, took the promises for themselves. They were protected from lions, fires, and sword thrusts, turned disadvantage to advantage, won battles, routed alien armies.

Women received their loved ones back from the dead. There were those who, under torture, refused to give in and go free, preferring something better: resurrection. Others braved abuse and whips, and, yes, chains and dungeons.

We have stories of those who were stoned, sawed in two, murdered in cold blood; stories of vagrants wandering the earth in animal skins, homeless, friendless, powerless—the world didn’t deserve them!—making their way as best they could on the cruel edges of the world.”

~Hebrews 11:33-38, The Message~

Satan is right to fear them, for their influence is beyond measure.

We, too, may find ourselves targets of the unseen forces who rail against our Father.

That’s why God brought us into this dark world—that bearing His image, we may illumine the darkness wherever our spheres of influence happen to be.

But fear not. “You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.” ~I John 4:4~

Martyrs for Christ(Click to Tweet)

I loved what Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention wrote as a caption beneath the photo of the martyrs:

“These are my brothers, faithful to Christ even unto death. King Jesus puts heads back on, and puts worlds back together. Maranatha.”

Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

May we continue to strengthen each other for what lies ahead on this awesome faith journey. Blessings, friends!

***Photo Backstory: I created this graphic with an image from Unsplash and the effects—especially posterize—and overlays at PicMonkey. Feel free to Pin, Tweet, download & share. Pass it on!
***Find me on Facebook at this link & follow!
***Let’s be Twitter pals!
If you’re on Twitter, I’ll follow you—if I’m not already. Just let me know in the comments. You can find me here.
***Let’s connect on Instagram!
I so enjoy scrolling my Instagram feed & admiring everyone’s pics. Let me know if you’re on Instagram or find me at this link.
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