“The great aim of God in creation and redemption is to preserve and display the infinite worth of His glory.  The way He does this is by redeeming a people who love Him and cleave to Him and cherish Him above all earthly treasures and pleasures.  The mirror He has chosen for the reflection of His worth is the indestructible joy of His people.  They will not trade him for anything this world can offer.” -John Piper

img_3087It turns out that the motives behind why we serve God can have a direct impact on the contentment we feel with our current circumstances.  If we serve God out of an obligation or feeling that if we serve then we will be rewarded, then our contentment often falls short.  We feel like we are “owed” something by God.  But if we serve out of sincere devotion and deep trust, our contentment overflows because we are taking hold of the indestructible joy that only God can provide.  Day 11 of “Greener Grass” from By the Well 4 God dives into this topic head first and has us reflecting on the book of Job.

I found myself sitting down to journal this page and lacking in creative inspiration.  In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, school closings, and supply shortages, my stress levels have been through the roof.  And, when my stress is high and my mind is full, creativity doesn’t often flow freely.  However, I know that generally if I can just begin a project, it will focus my mind on other things and allow me to worship and create.

img_3089Because I was feeling a bit mentally blocked, I went back to a tried and true method for getting a background started.  This was tone-on-tone stenciling, one of my favorite techniques.  I used a blush brush to lightly add Worn Lipstick Distress Oxide ink across the background of the page.  Then, using a beautiful cherry blossom stencil, I added additional Distress Oxide ink over the top, creating a subtle floral pattern in the background.  Distress Oxide Ink in Peacock Feathers was then applied around the border of the page, creating a nice contrast and focusing your attention on the layout.

img_3090Once the background was complete, I focused on creating a cluster of ephemera pieces in the lower left hand corner of the page.  The background was a bit “busy” looking because of the stenciling, so in order to set my die-cut pieces off from the rest of the page, I inked the edges of all three pieces using a couple of different colors of Distress Oxide ink.  This almost has the effect of subtly matting each piece.  I also grabbed the “Textures of Faith” stamp set from By The Well 4 God and used Versafine Onyx Black ink to stamp out a few art marks that would be layered behind my paper pieces.  This created a cohesive look across the page and multiple clusters, plus the black provided some nice contrast to the softer color palette that was already present.

img_3092For the title of the page, I used a combination of the “Brush Stroke” alpha stamp set from By the Well 4 God and the coordinating alpha tile stickers.  The title actually ended up in the middle of the page, which created a nice place where I could type out a portion of the quote that I wrote above.  I finished off the page with an additional “contentment” stamp that framed the scripture I focused on and then added a few clear floral stickers from the kit.

img_3091During these trying times, it can be hard to hold on to joy.  But, for me, that is part of the amazingness of God.  Even in the dark times, He often shows us a light of hope that keeps us holding on.  I hope that you are safe, well, and finding the indestructible joy of our awesome God!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

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