Samstag, 16. Dezember 2017

Advent 16

The Lion of Judah



16. The Lion of Judah

“The King of Beasts.” That is the title of the lion. This is an acknowledgement of his strength, his awesomeness (not of the teenager kind, but really), his power, and his rule of the life-giving waterholes. A lion is nothing to fool with. A lion cannot be ignored. A lion is not approached casually or helter-skelter. A lion demands respect. So too our Saviour. He is not tame. He is not cuddly. He may not be treated like a pet, at our whims. But note: this is the lion of Judah, of the tribe from whom the promised Savior would come; so this lion uses his strength for his family, for his own, to protect and provide. So we can be happy He is for us, not against us.

Revelation 5: 5


And...
More Christmas color


See yesterday's post for the CONTEST. TOMORROW is the last day.

Freitag, 15. Dezember 2017

Advent 15 and CONTEST

The Way



15. The Way

To get from here to there, wherever, needs a way. Certain someones this summer did a motorcycle trip along what some of us would call the worst kinds of ways: dangerous, tiny mountain roads, often washed out, not even close to smooth, sometimes running under waterfalls, sometimes looking more like rivers than roads, ever picturesque and lots of adventure, but not very good roads. Those were hard Ways. Other ways might be blocked for more than the three hours those motorcyclists had to wait while the machines rebuilt the passage. Some ways are too steep, too rough, too crowded, too hard to find, or too-something-else to be good for getting from here to there. When Jesus says He is The Way, He is not talking about being an inaccessible way, or a bad-for-us way, or not-really-the-way. His way can be difficult for our comfort, and can sometimes be dangerous in a hostile world, but He is the true way nonetheless and is the only way to get our best goals - heaven and salvation.

Genesis 3: 24; 18: 19
Exodus 23: 20
Judges 2: 22
Isaiah 30: 21; 35: 8; 48: 17
John 14: 4, 6

Acts 2: 28; 16: 17


Advent Busy-ness

'Tis the season to get out Christmas letters - a tad late, but one does what one can.

A quick card for somebody

And more decorations


And the rains came down and tried to float us away; but now a freeze is coming, so things might get interesting.

CONTEST

Just because....
Craftsy is having a sale on its craft classes. I know everyone is overwhelmingly busy and maybe has no time for an online class, but if you are interested in winning one, here is what you do:

1. Take some pictures of your Christmas decorations and send them to me or post them yourself,

2. Look at the Craftsy site and pick a class you would like (anything from soups to sewing to sculpture) and would take the time to do,

3. Tell me or write in your post why the class would be good for you.

You have today and tomorrow and Monday to do this.

Donnerstag, 14. Dezember 2017

Advent 14 and Cookies

Water


14. Living Water

Water, like bread, is very basic in life and for life. It is not exotic and hard to find or make or tricky to partake of, say like absinth. It is abundantly available in vast quantities. It is readily usable. It requires no preparation if it is pure. And we can't live without it. It is easy to see why Jesus is also equated with the water that keeps us alive. One can only live a few days without water, then the body goes rapidly into shut-down and shock. One could presumably stay alive for some time on Coke or processed orange juice, but descending into diabetes and heart trouble is not the best way to live well. Pure water doesn't give anyone diabetes or heart trouble. Contaminated, fluoridated, chemical-laden water is just as bad as the non-water liquids in being imposters for purity. Neither quick or slow decline is good for life. Jesus says He is Living Water, the pure kind that does not make us sick.


John 4: 10, 14


Cookies

Each culture has its own cookies. One son went to his Oma's to bake Swiss cookies with her. These are Mailänderli (lemony sugar cookies in shapes), Chräbeli (anise cookies), Züriläckerli (hmm, indescribable - you have to try them; each region of Switzerland has its own variety), and (not on the picture) Zimtsterne (cinnamon stars).


I would love to see your cookies.



Merry days to all.

Mittwoch, 13. Dezember 2017

Advent 13 and Projects

Bread


13. Bread of Life

In the Bible, the term bread refers both to the baked good of flour and water and also to other items used for food, so it means “sustenance.” These are the things that keep body and soul together, so people can stay alive, and, one would hope (if the “bread” is not of the Twinky variety), to stay healthy and robust. So Jesus equates Himself with the best of sustenance, the kind that contributes to and is essential for healthy living. He is definitely not a Twinky, nor is He the overbred wheat that makes people gluten intolerant. He is the necessary substance that brings us life, on earth, and spiritual re-birth and eternal life. He re-iterates this as a metaphor in physical reality in the institution of the Lord's Supper, of which He commanded His people to partake often to re-nourish themselves for life and growth. As difficult and as complex as the concept is of partaking of our Lord's body and Blood, yet, as in all the hard-but-easy concepts God has given to His people ( two intersecting lines make the sign of all of our redemption; plain water is used to make us children of God; words bring people to faith; one very basic concepts gains us eternal life in heaven: “Jesus is my Savior”), the main idea is very simple: eat and drink to be renewed. We can study it forever, but anyone can get the gist in the three words.


John 6: 35


Projects

Some of the Creon family have been busy being creative. Katrina helped the little ones make angels. They are made from raffia and feathers with lots of Christmas cheer.

Gavin's

Loveta's

Talya's

Abigail was busy making another pretty girl. This one has turned seams, a new method, and her own designs.  I love those prints, Abigail.

This is a boy-sized sled made by Bradon. It looks fast. Now for snow.....

Thank you to all for sharing your projects, and to Katrina for helping. (This munched on big cookie is a Lebkuchen  from some nice people. It doesn't exist any more.)


Dienstag, 12. Dezember 2017

Pieces of Progress


I almost completely forgot to post this week.

Here's a bit of progress on my Portrait class project:


And some super sketchy thumbnails in Illustration:



(The tiny one in the bottom left corner was by my teacher.)

Really scatter-brained with all the end-of-the-year stuff to wrap up, and the holidays, and new people at my day job,... Got to remember to breathe and enjoy the season with it's reflections on Christ's coming!

Advent 12

Door


12. The Door

Jesus said “I am the Door.” This was in the context of the sheep going in and out from pasture to pen. The sheep needed to go into the wide, often-dangerous world to get their sustenance, and they needed to come into the sheep fold for rest and security. We are like those sheep, needing to go out into the wide world for our work, and coming to the sheep-fold of church for refreshment and safety. But Jesus makes the point that there is only one way in and out, one safe way, one effective way –and that is through the designated door. He is that door. He specifies which door is the right door: He says “I AM.” With those words He names Himself as God. So anyone wanting to go through that door needs to confess that Jesus is Lord, true God. Then he will be able to go through to find green pastures and still waters.

John 10: 7, 9
Luke 12: 8
Romans 10: 9
Philippians 2: 11
I John 4: 15
II John 1: 7



Montag, 11. Dezember 2017

Our Decorations

Yes, we have our tree.
My boys and I went up in the mountains last week to select a wild tree. We cannot do that every year because if there is any snow at all the roads are impassable. It has been very cold here but dry, so no snow (unlike last year at this time when our snowpocolypse was beginning!) We took Miss Leah with us to choose a tree. She has never had a natural Christmas tree and was excited to participate in the process.


 I also collected an assortment of mountain greens, intending to make a wreath and porch arrangements.


I made a total of five arrangements, adding in flocked pine cones and shiny ornaments. I used all the gathered greens before I made a wreath, so for that I used a small grape vine wreath and made just a simple adornment for the door.



We decorated our tree that evening so Leah could help. I love the natural trees and how the ornaments can hang freely in the spaces. I think this is the nicest one we have ever brought down from the mountain.
This is a new ornament this year. It is from Bronner's in Frankenmuth, MI. I have a couple more that I am giving as gifts.



My angel collection is on the piano this year and I decided not to set up the village since there will be a sad absence of small children here this year.

 I got a small start to the wrapping.



I quickly put up more decorations before the family Christmas party I hosted here Saturday night for my siblings and their families.



This week I will be concentrating on baking cookies for Christmas cookie gift boxes.

Now for just a little frozen precipitation and the ambiance will be complete.