Tag Archives | hope

the new painting

the new painting is finally revealed. you’ve seen small images of it here and here and here. is it what you imagined it would look like?! ha. i’ve been working on this one for a while! it was made for our dear friends the Estes {you can go check out their blog here} who came and visited us this past weekend.

i wanted the painting to be cheerful and happy. to give the feeling of hope and joy.

i loved this verse for the painting because these three things have been a HUGE part of their lives for the past couple of years:

faith– that God knows what He is doing in their lives and in little Owen’s life. sometimes it’s hard to hold on tight to that faith but it’s still there.

hope– that God will provide for today as well as for a future for little Owen and their family- may it be better than anyone can imagine.

and love– that true love may transcend over every part of their lives- through friends and family and even strangers. Love is what has got them through so far and is going to get them through everything in this life. That is why it is the greatest.

this family is amazing. you meet them and you can’t help but love them to death. i love how Sharon can strike up a conversation with anyone-even a grumpy person at a new jersey cash register- who i can barely get to say hi to me– and she somehow gets them to laugh with her. her joy is radiant.  i love that Joel always thinks and speaks the best of people. he is a Godly man who is such a light of Christ to anyone he meets.  in the past few years when we’ve tried to be there for them it felt like they were giving more of themselves to us.  that’s just who they are. such lovely people.  we are so blessed by their friendship. we only hope that we can bless them as much.

may this gift bless them because it’s from my heart. may God bless them as they are growing more and more in faith, hope and LOVE.

xo-kimberly renee.


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sea glass

“He knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” Job 23:10

the other night we walked down to the beach with the camera. husbuddy just got a tripod and wanted to practice some landscape shots. i took some pictures too of course 🙂 {i know, you’re all so excited that you’re going to be seeing a million photos of the ocean this year!! hee hee}

while i waited for him to take his thousand and one photographs i combed the beach for sea glass{as you can see, he did the same}. i am always fascinated by sea glass. it goes into the ocean ugly, hard, even dangerous with sharp edges that cut. then it comes out softened and beautiful. and we collect it. how funny is that? we’re collecting trash.

but the ocean has done something wonderful to the little glass pieces, make them smooth and worn and sparkly. it churns, it rages, it crashes the little piece of glass all around until it finally ends up on the beach… beautiful.

kind of like us. we start out in this world as selfish and ugly and a little rough around the edges. we may stay that way like a piece of glass left in the trash but when we give up control, that’s not where God leaves us. He wants our faith to grow. He has a plan for us. He wants to make us more holymore beautiful. sometimes that means being tossed and churned in the ocean.

“The strongest trees are found not in the thick shelter of the forest but out in the open, where winds from every direction bear down upon them. The fierce winds bend and twist them until they become giant in stature. These are the trees that toolmakers seek for handles for their tools, because of the wood’s great strength.

It is the same in the spiritual world. Remember when you see a person of great spiritual stature, the road you must travel to walk with him is not one where the sun always shines and wildflowers always bloom. Instead, the way is steep, rocky and narrow path where the winds of hell will try to knock you off your feet, and where sharp rocks will cut you, prickly throns will scratch your face, and poisonous snakes will slither and hiss all around you.

The path of faith is one of sorry and joy, suffering and healing comfort, tears and smiles, trials and victories, conflicts and triumphs, and also hardships, dangers, beatings persectuions, misunderstanding, trouble and distress. Yet, “in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” (Rom.8:37)”

-an excerpt by EA Kilbourne in Streams in the Desert

dear friends, may sea glass and strong trees give you hope today.

xo-kimberly renee

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a sad day

image via

my heart aches and i start to cry at all of these images. that place you see is my home town. it is right next door to my parent’s house. my family is evacuated and safe, now just waiting and watching the flames and hoping. hoping that it will end.

i have no words to really express what i’m feeling, what we’re all feeling, besides, crying out to my God. may this verse bring peace amidst the storm.

image via

1” But now thus says the LORD,

he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.
3 For I am the LORD your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
I give Egypt as your ransom,
Cush and Seba in exchange for you.
4 Because you are precious in my eyes,
and honored, and I love you,
I give men in return for you,
peoples in exchange for your life.
5 Fear not, for I am with you;
I will bring your offspring from the east,
and from the west I will gather you.
6 I will say to the north, Give up,
and to the south, Do not withhold;
bring my sons from afar
and my daughters from the end of the earth,
7 everyone who is called by my name,
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed and made.”

Isaiah 43:1-7

image via

it is a sad, sad day indeed.

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a blessing

Isaiah 49:2 has to be one of my favorite verses.

“…in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me into a polished arrow and concealed me in his quiver.”

there’s something comforting about this verse.

think about it.

i may be experiencing “shadow”…

… but i’m in the shadow of HIS hand.

i may be experiencing tough things, beaten down, used, abused…

…but to polish an arrow out of a rough, oddly shaped rock it takes a lot of grinding and polishing… which can be really rough. to smooth a rock out into a polished arrow means going through a hard time first.

i may feel like i have no purpose, not worth much of anything, that i don’t know what to do with my life…

…but when God puts an arrow in His quiver… it means He’s getting ready to use it. He’s prepared that arrow for something special and purposeful. He is getting it ready to use.

and really, is there anywhere better to be than in the shadow of His hand, being polished personally by Him into something special, or in His quiver being prepared to be used by HIM?!

blessings to you my friends.

xo-kimberly renee

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one word for 2012

so, I’m 4 days late for any sort of resolution.  oh well. what can I say? I’m just a “running a little late” kind of gal. anyway, the past few days I’ve been thinking and praying about this up coming year. I wrote a little journal entry on the 1st that said something like this:

“a new year. another new year. there are so many dreams and good intentions that are thought about on this day. resolutions that that usually don’t get very far. that usually never see june, let alone december. but here I am…thinking about resolutions again…”

I have a list, of course, that goes on and on. All my little desires for myself and for this year.

All the things I see as failures in myself that in my heart I really do want to change-even if my real problem is that I have a lack of discipline… ack. let’s not talk about that.

See, my husbuddy said something as we were working on our “goal” list… {remember this post  from last year? yes, I realize that I was way too on top of it last year, thinking about it before it was even the first!}

anyway, he said that he didn’t want our goal list for this year to be too long, because he was worried about me. ME? I asked. He said that he knows that I’m a “glass half empty” girl and I get too sad at the end of the year when I see too many things on our goal list that aren’t checked off.

eek. way to stick it to me, sweetheart.

and so true.

I knew that I always kind of pretended to be a “half glass FULL” girl, I even tried to fool myself half the time, but I was hoping that no one else noticed that I’m not really that girl… o man. talk about humbling. Husbuddy noticed my little mask.


anyway. it got me thinking. I still have a list of resolutions and goals {um, exercise! pray! read the bible! draw every day! paint more! get out of debt! have a good savings!…yup, totally typical.} that I want to hang on to…

but maybe I need to really just focus on one thing.

maybe I just need one word.



yes. that’s the “one word” I came up with.

definition: content

adj 1.mentally or emotionally satisfied with things as they are

2.assenting to or willing to accept circumstances, a proposed course of action, etc

vb 3.( tr ) to make (oneself or another person) content or satisfied:to content oneself with property

n 4.peace of mind; mental or emotional satisfaction

um. do you see that noun (number 4)definition? PEACE of MIND. um hello. I need that. I also totally need to remember to be “satisfied with the way things are” because God made today! He gave me this moment! it’s a gift! I can’t spend the whole year trying to “fix myself” through resolutions without being focused and content with who God has made me to be. But I think it’s more than this definition can describe.

This morning it really hit me as I read my study. I’ve never looked at one of my favorite sections of scripture, Philippians 4:1-13, under the lens of seeking contentment. My bible study helped me to realize that my thoughts often get in the way of contentment- I need to focus on what is good, encouraging and true (v.8-9) instead of discouragement, pettiness and destructive thinking as I so often do(v.2-3). Anxiety and worry ruins anyone’s contentment(v.6-7) and the peace of God which surpasses understanding can not be given to me unless I let go of that anxiety and trust God. I need to set aside my resistance to learn (v.11) and my independent and planning nature(v.13) that often tries to do my own thing and go my own way without consulting with the Tour Guide.

Paul says in Phil. 4:11-13 “…for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content…in any any every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”

True contentment comes only as a gift from God, even to Paul.

Since my husbuddy pointed out that I’m a girl who looks at her world as glass half empty- I realized that I’m always disappointed with things. I always wish things were better. One day I’m not happy at work, the next day I’m not happy with staying at home all day! One day I’m not happy that I’ve spent all my free time with people who wanted to just hang out and I’m drained that I haven’t had any “me” time and the next day I’m lonely because no one wants to hang out. ack! what is wrong with me? I wish that things worked out differently. Big things in life sometimes go so wrong, don’t they? I question why God does the things He does and often times I try to fix them myself.

I’m ashamed to say that but I’m just being honest.


in that little sketch above I drew with a blue watercolor pencil rain coming down.

This year, 2012, my desire is to have contentment to wash over me like rain.

Contentment is my prayer.

can I get an AMEN?

It’s not going to be as easy as that. I realize that. It’s not my nature at all to let go. I realize that to have this word be real in my life I have to be diligent in some of my other goals (i.e.: read my bible, pray every day, and soak up time with Husbuddy!) but in the end, true contentment is really a gift because I’m not going to be able to “just be content” on my own. It’s my prayer, and it’s what I’ll work and pray for…

even if I’m only completely content for one whole day this year.

ha. but I’m going to seek to be content more than that (I mean, that’s the whole point of this, right?)

so who’s going to hold me accountable?

hee hee.

what about you? any one word come to mind that you’re going to focus on this year?

Happy 2012, friends!

xoxo-kimberly renee

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