My Top 3 Beginner Bible Art Journaling Sites

My Top 3 Beginner Bible Art Journaling Sites

I know! You are freaking out at the very thought of writing in your Bible, well calm down Betsy 🙂   We live in a brave world where writing in your Bible is approved of, so why not get creative with your notes and journaling?

I started writing notes in my Bible way back when I became a Christian in the early 1980s… no I am not dating myself…much. My student Bible is chock full of various colored pen inscriptions and I treasure all the notes. Each entry marks my growth and understanding of scripture, it adds to the grounding of my faith by anchoring my thoughts on His written word. As my faith increased so did my notes; they grew to be color coded, then too many to write in the tiny margins of my study Bible and so I opted to stick note paper in between the pages. My Study Bible is well worn and even has had to be rebound. I treasure this book and hope to continue to add to it.

So with notes in my Bible being acceptable and useful, I suppose the natural progression was to illustrate in my Bible and it’s messages being revealed to me.  Back in November 2015 while doing a Google search of Bible verse coloring pages, I ran across beautiful pictures of other women being creative with their Bible journaling.  This intrigued me so much that I immediately looked at my collection of various Bibles to find an appropriate one to try this out on but nothing seemed appropriate and I ordered one online at Christian Book . I was so excited and waited patiently for it to arrive. But let me warn you, illustrating in your Bible can be addictive. I found that once I started, I was spending more time in the Word. The readings in my quiet time became a beautiful time where the Spirit would flow and help me focus on the verse I was illustrating and thereby often memorizing it. What a tremendously useful avenue to take in the study of scripture.

The journaling Bible arrived and bam! I couldn’t bring myself to draw in it.   I struggled, and I worried that I was not going to be good enough to illustrate in it and eventually ruin it by drawing in it. So I continued to scroll through Pintrest posts gleaning inspiration from hundreds of pins of women who were courageously drawing in their Bibles. That is when I ran across an entry from Lauren at the Thinking Closet blog titled  Permissions Page. and so this is the #1 site I would recommend starting at. Not because of beautiful pages (there are those), but because you may need to give yourself permission to be imperfect, to express what you are led to illustrate. It was a very freeing exercise and one that I periodically go to when I come across another area that I need to give permission for. I need to frequently remind myself that I am not an artist but I do love being creative and that is just fine and perfect enough for me and it is one of the ways I can worship my Creator God.

The 2nd site I love is Rebekah R. Jones Blog. I spent many months on her site.  Yes, I did say months. I found that her tutorials were what I needed to lead me to the creativity that lurked just below the surface. Her website has access to “challenges” from 2015 to present. These challenges offer video tutorials along with a chat about the passage being illustrated. I learned an incredible amount from Rebekah and cherished the time I labored over my Bible during my grandchildren’s naptime. Learning about journaling was not all I gained… so be warned! My Journaling supplies increased from Crayola colored pencils to Prisma Pencils, from kids watercolor pans to Inktense blocks and pencils and oh so much more!

geocaching grandkids
photo of my dear grandkids geocaching

After a while I realized that by doing these challenges – I was doing one every day for a while, that it became more of a list I was checking off and I did not want God’s word to be a list that I checked off. So I reverted back to doing my devotional readings and Bible studies.  From my regular quiet time I began to illustrate on my own as the Spirit moved me, and that felt right and good. That is about the time when I came across Shanna Noel’s Illustrated Faith Blog site. This 3rd site has devotionals, videos, supplies and more. I ordered a booklet devotional called Beautiful and began to use the devotional booklet to journal. Many of the contributors to this blog use vivid color, print and paste add ins, and stamps. You will enjoy the upbeat and heartfelt ladies here as they share their experience with you.

So, there you have it. The 3 sites I have frequented most for inspiration and tutorials. Be not afraid to embellish the pages of the Word of God with your creativity, after all the Gutenburg Bible had spaces set aside for “illuminated” decoration. If you would like to see more posts on Bible Art Journaling leave a comment below, or if you have a favorite site you turn to for inspiration please share it in the comments below. I would love to see what others are doing in their study time with this worship art form.

***just a word of wisdom: if you are using someone else’s design be sure to link back to the original artist and give them credit where credit is due.

colored pencil drawing from photo of grandkids
my blond grandchildren added to the pages of my Bible with colored pencils
Finding Hope in a Season of Change

Finding Hope in a Season of Change

Just write they say.  But what do you write about when your life is in a bit of a tumultuous season?  That season of course. 😊

I am in a season of change, much like the Fall we are just entering into here in New England. Some people have very strong feelings about entering into Fall…they see the trees loosing their leaves and the world around them turning brown, dark and cold. They fail to see the crimsons, and deep oranges that light up the trees or the refreshing breeze wafting through those leaves. The season of change is upon my husband and I… and I am choosing to look for the life giving joy this season will bring.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭29:11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Our Fall is the process of prepping our house of 20 years for sale. Who knew so much needed to be done to a home we were comfortable in? Painting to flooring, landscaping to decluttering. It’s exhausting!  But this season is one I am excited about even if we are not sure where our next home will be or even what it will look like.  Wherever we may go to, I have one expectation and that is – I will be trusting in God to provide for our needs, prosper us and not harm us. I can focus on the emotional “loss” of our home through this sale, or I can focus on the blessings I experience every day and those I’m sure are yet to come in our next season.

This season is a beautiful season of change.  I choose to see the vibrant colors waving in the crisp Autumn breeze, I hope you do as well. If you liked this article, please feel free to share it on your social media accounts and I look forward to hearing about the season of life you are in.

How To Live Life Changed

How To Live Life Changed

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:2 NKJV

What a great reminder to read…maybe everyday ..since I often need to be reminded if I fail at something.

It’s sometimes hard to grasp the concept that we are given a new life even though we are never perfect, since we are always sinning in one way or another. But the study I’m doing called You Are Forgiven is really opening my eyes to the fact that once a sin is confessed and we repent, it is gone – gone for good! Knowing this deep in your heart and mind makes you want to be different, you want to be who you were created to be. We were all created different, so you don’t have to try to be someone else, or do more to receive love and forgiveness. We only need to be the child  of God, the child he made us to be. Our loyalties now belong with a new Master, a new hope, and a new future. Our thoughts, our words, and our actions should reflect this.

“This ought to be the care of all who profess the Christian faith, that they be new creatures; not only that they have a new name, and wear a new livery, but that they have a new heart and new nature. And so great is the change the grace of God makes in the soul, that, as it follows, old things are passed away—old thoughts, old principles, and old practices, are passed away; and all these things must become new.” (Matthew Henry)

This brings me to another point that makes me think.
Are the results of God’s forgiveness evident in our lives? Do we look, and act, and talk like we are part of this world and comfortable here? I hope not! Because this world is not our true home and only God’s supernatural act of grace has the power to change the human condition. By being changed we now have been given the ability to know what is within the pleasing and acceptable will of God. Our job since being transformed and having the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is to be obedient to the will of God. Easier said than done since I know that my base nature is corrupted by this world. Yet, I feel a deep compulsion to strive to improve my thoughts, words, and deeds; making them be acts of love for Christ.

Do you struggle with accepting forgiveness? Are your thoughts, words and deeds reflecting the world or God’s principles and practices? Please share with us in the comments, I would love to read your thoughts on it.

Praise be to God. The old has gone, the new is here!

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