Monday, December 31, 2012

Blessings by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Watercolor Painting 1998 by Laurie Pace

John answered them, "I baptize with water; but there is one among you whom you do not recognize,
the one who is coming after me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie."John 1:26

Blessings to you my friends.


Sunday, December 30, 2012

Preparing for the new year...Words of my heart, Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Blessed are those that fear the Lord and walk in his ways.  Psalm 128

As we close out this year we think of preparations in our life for the new year coming.  Ben Pace was always smiling greeting each new day. It did not take a new year to roll around.  Whistling, dancing, sharing jokes, playing his harmonica... it was always about sharing and giving to others.

I want to take this joy with me as I remember the legacy he left to us...
to live each day to the fullest and to remember that you could get glad just like you got mad.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Welcome the Prince of Peace, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness. Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. 
They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.  1 John 2:9-11

Look to the morning light. Let if fill your heart and soul and then take that light with you this day and share it with others. Be confident as Jesus Christ was born and is our Prince of Peace.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Friday, December 28, 2012

Tell your own story...Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

"This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth.  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin." 1 John 1:5-7

Some days you think you should not have even gotten out of bed. Things do not go the way you thought they should. Violence interrupts life when you are least prepared for it. Somehow life consists of pain and sorrow along with the joys and love.  Innocent people suffer and die. Today's violence and injustices seem immeasurable worse than in past generations.

What can you do to make changes in your story as your story will affect the story and lives of others.  It has to start in our hearts and our homes. Surrounding ourselves with others that care and believe and want to make a difference just enforces the good that can grow and flourish in one community, than one county, than one state and one nation.... One Nation Under God.

When I am teaching art to my students, I encourage them to tell their story in their own way through their artwork. No one produces the same story as we are all unique.  Where we are bound together is by our priorities, our compassion and our beliefs. 

Do you know what yours are?

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Reflecting the Light, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light;
upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone.  Isaiah 9:2

The colors of Christmas now are colors of my own earthly Father. Streaming back in my heart are the memories of putting up the tree. Usually it was the two of us. He taught me how to put the lights inside the branches closer to the trunk. I squealed often as it was scratchy to stick my chubby arms in the pine needles...but I did it wanting to please him.  Then we had all the many years of collected ornaments out in their boxes on the couch. Smaller ones went higher up on the tree...where I could not reach, and the larger ones toward the bottom where I could reach.

Memory reminds me they were all very fragile and each had a bit of family history to them making me even more careful as I chose the next one to hang making sure it had a secure hanger and hook on it.

Once the ornaments were on the tree, hung just inside the outer fringes of the was time to hang the 'tinsel'. My adult children do not even remember the days of tinsel.  My Dad was the man to learn how to hang tinsel. It is done one tiny strand at a time.  The silver threads began reflecting the lights of the tree and brightening the room to a full warmth.

We are just like those ornaments and tinsel Dad.   Some of us are fragile and must be handled with care. Some of us are just a simple shiny strand of tinsel...nothing by itself, but once hung in the right place in life, we reflect the joy and brightness around us.  We need His light in our lives to shine and reflect out to the world. All of us come together in His light and make the season uniting together in Him.   Without Him, we are nothing. With His light... we are reflecting His light around the world.

Remember, lights go on first toward the inside of the tree...then the ornaments, ribbons and tinsel.

The last thing Dad always did was to set up the train under the tree with my older brother Bill. He still has that train today. It was Dad's train as a youngster. I am hoping that Bill has that thing chugging right along right now enjoying the sweet memory of Dad and celebrating the joy of this season.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Let it shine...through you. Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

“Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord. And this will be a sign for you:
you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” Luke 2:10-12

This is an ornament from a set my Mother made me back around 1975 when I had a tree to decorate with a baby in the house... they are plastic but with the paint she used, the lights shine through like stained glass... taking the lowly cheaper plastic and filling it with HIS light and turning it into a thing of beauty just like real stained glass.

His light can fill each of us with the same beauty no matter what we have or have not done in our lives. 

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Keep the flame burning...Words of my Heart A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Keep the flame burning in your heart and live with joy in your life each day.

He gave us the gift of His Son;
 it is a gift to be kept with us at all times and used often.

Let your light shine filled with His love...

Laurie and Terry Pace

Monday, December 24, 2012

Words of my Heart, Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Tomorrow we light the last center candle in our advent wreath. His love shines throughout the world and fills our hearts and every need.

The magnificent gift of His Son Jesus, to live and die for us, to lead, guide, guard and direct us in every way...and to die for us and our salvation, 
is the greatest  gift of your lifetime.

Words of my Heart, Laurie 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Believe in the promise, Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

“For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.  Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.” Luke 1

We light our fourth candle this day...the last Sunday in Advent and reflect in awe over the wonder of this week and the greatest gift we receive from God.
It is not one wrapped in sparkling paper under the tree, or the small box at the bottom of our stocking...but it the gift of His only Son.

Open your heart and receive your gift... prepare to accept the light and grace that accompany the gift. Fill your heart with the love of God and His Son our Lord, Jesus.  Believe in this promise.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Standing Before Him, Shared Words by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

"Oh, king of us all. 
I find myself standing before 
your strength and splendor 
watching, waiting 
and filled with total joy.

You have lifted my mind in hope. 
Now help me to open my life 
the the coming of the Spirit.

I want to be like Mary, your mother. 
Her wonderful courage and strength 
inspire me to do the same. 
She simply said Yes 
and the impossible was done.

Thank you for this Advent journey. 
The anticipation has filled my life 
and made me long for 
a closer relationship with you.

My life gets so busy that I forget to focus. 
Thank you for guidance. 
Thank you for the quiet moments 
when I have felt your love.

Nothing will be impossible with God.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel 
Shall come to thee, O Israel!"

Friday, December 21, 2012

Can you let yourself believe? Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Our soul waits for the LORD, who is our help and our shield,
For in him our hearts rejoice; in his holy name we trust.   Psalm 33:20


Only a few more days until Christmas. Terry has the train hooked up and blowing smoke.  The Christmas music lingers in the air be it from our guitars playing together and singing or from the Ipod.  Our spirits are full of the promise of the days ahead with the Christmas Symphony in Dallas, spending time with family and enjoying the special foods that seem to 'appear' during this joyful season.

A new mother and father await the arrival of a new child... anticipating and looking forward to their family expanding.  Can we be excited thinking of all God has in plans for us?  No, not sit back and let it happen, but giving Him your hand this time... this new year and living your life to serve Him and others.

Can you let yourself believe?

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Be His Today...Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Let the Lord enter; he is the king of glory. 
Psalm 24:1-2

I have often heard many pregnant women feel like their body has been 'taken' over by the little one growing inside. I loved being pregnant and glowed the entire time (three times) never even thinking about it, just being excited and thankful.  We have another grand-baby due to arrive in the early spring and watching my daughter-in-law change with her first pregnancy has been like watching a flower bloom. 

So when I was reading about Mary becoming the 'temple of God's Word' carrying Jesus the Son of God, I begin to realize the fullness of her commitment and trust in our Father. As an unmarried woman, to agree to carry and nurture this child conceived by the Holy Spirit, she was leaving herself wide open to many horrendous bad 'endings' to life as she knew it. 

Could you seriously put yourself in God's hands KNOWING you would be placing yourself in a tenuous situation that would most assuredly bring condemnation to you and your family?  I do not believe he is asking anything near as serious as Mary took on... so try this day to place your day, just this one day to begin with, in God's hands. Be His today. 

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Speechless... Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

My mouth shall be filled with your praise, and I will sing your glory!  
Psalm 71:8

Sometimes while reading the advent story and lighting our candles things stick in my mind a bit longer as I reflect on them from a different perspective. We just read about Zachariah being confronted in the temple that Elisabeth would have a child and in disbelief he asked the Angel to have God give him a sign so he could be assured of the truth of this prophecy.   I could hear my father-in-law Ben laughing at me saying, "Be careful what you ask for."

God sent a sign... he struck Zachariah speechless until after the birth of his son, John the Baptist. 

Is this true for us today?  We seem to often doubt God's words of promise to us and in the true sense are we not "unable to speak" because we do not trust? Are you giving your life and service to Him, surrendering all to put yourself in His hands and be apart of His plan?  In the smallest ways sometimes we make the biggest contributions.

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Are you ready for Company? Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

As a fair exchange—I speak as to my children—open wide your hearts also. 
2 Corinthians 6:13

The coming of Jesus, the coming of light, the coming of grace, the coming of joy and the coming of salvation. Have you cleaned out your house? Are you ready for his company?

He is coming....

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Monday, December 17, 2012

Peace shall surround us... Joy will fill us. Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

May his name endure forever; may it continue as long as the sun. Then all nations will be blessed through him, and they will call him blessed  
Psalm 72:17

Peace and Joy... God saves each of us. Jesus comes to teach each of us. From our advent journey through our last breath, may we praise His name and call Him Blessed. 

His son came to us to walk this earthly mess as a human among us. Still today he comes to us through advent offering us this new journey in our lives. 

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Rejoice without Ceasing...Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

The third week of advent begins this day... and joy fills the heart knowing that soon we will celebrate Jesus' birthday... It is coming near. Excitement fills each moment and the joy stays alive in the background of each day....waiting to burst through and be the glow in our lives.

Are you content in life?  Have you given where you need to give and provided for your neighbor as you have for yourself? 

Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4: 6-7

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Time to Bloom, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the LORD comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.  Isaiah 49:13

Feel His comfort and grace.
Prepare your heart.
It is time to bloom.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Light of Life, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Those who trust in themselves are fools, but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe. Proverbs 28:26

Not many blooms left on my two Christmas cactus.  Talk about reliant plants... every season in November... late November, they bloom... and bloom wildly with stunning buds opening to large flowers. They are just about self-reliant...but I know that God is really what it is all about.

Often it is easy to forget that we need to rely on Him. He truly knows what is good for us and He calls that goodness into our lives.  We watch our granddaughter often rebel against her parents directing her life. When we do it to ourselves we are basically being self destructive. 

Advent offers to us the time to accept God's invitation to light our lives with his direction and grace. It is wise to accept this invitation and follow the Lord and His light of Life.

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Hold my Hand, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

When we are feeling insecure we reach out for someone's hand in comfort. All of us are needy in life and we seek something to bring us comfort.  Often we seek the wrong things in life.  It is only the Father that can refresh us and restore our balance in life. 

In advent we realize this promise comes through the birth of Jesus who gives His life for us, for our sin and our salvation.  God promises to strengthen us and help us... He will uphold us in his hand.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Struggling along, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

They that hope in the LORD will renew their strength, they will soar on eagles’ wings; They will run and not grow weary, walk and not grow faint.
Isaiah 40:31

We often struggle over things in life. The struggle makes us weary but eventually we begin to see the end or the light to the struggle.  God is there. Our confidence soars as we see 'His light' and realize we are almost there. Our strength is renewed and we move forward now with more courage and energy than we had when we began.

Advent preparation is about this very feeling... the beauty that you know is there, you can see it with your eyes and your heart.  Despite everything else in your life, the joy of this season renews you daily.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Lift up your eyes... and see it differently. Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Lift up your eyes on high and see who created these: He leads out their army and numbers them, calling them all by name. By his great might and the strength of his power not one of them is missing! Isaiah 40:26

Winter is here and the grass has browned, the leaves are falling in a blanket of color and today the cold wind blows from the north... yet the word of God withstands all seasons and things.

Inside each of us, we know what we personally need to be saved from. And only through ourselves can we allow that to happen.  We choose new ways to see things in our lives. We find new answers to challenges that confront us.  Then we begin to see the freedom that comes with our relationship with God.

It is not His will for us to be lost, hurt or confused.

 Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Monday, December 10, 2012

In moments of weakness... Words of my Heart, Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Strengthen the hands that are feeble, 
make firm the knees that are weak,
Say to those whose hearts are frightened:
Be strong, fear not! Here is your God,
He comes with vindication; With divine recompense He comes to save you.  
Isaiah 35: 3-4

The promise made to us is incredible. Just visualize waiting for the best thing that is getting ready to happen to you. (No not the lottery)  God has promised to save each of us and this time of advent is to prepare us for His son as He offers us healing, restoration, love and salvation. 

In the moments that you feel weak or overcome by everything, you must read Isaiah 35: 3-4 above. 

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Sunday, December 9, 2012

You will never go Hungry...Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” John 6:35

Are you worried about anything right now?  

What if you could pretend those worries were a coat you had buttoned on yourself and you could simply unbutton the coat and just drop it right where you are?  As you drop this coat of stress, pain or immediately find you are dressed in the light and glory of God forever. Just as Jesus declared your needs will be provided and there is not room for worry with this light and glory surrounding you. 

So in this second week of advent consider yourself freed of what holds you captive. Be free from your longing and desires that seem to hold power over you. Simply be filled with His joy.

"The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy."  Psalm 126

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Saturday, December 8, 2012

It this is the way, walk it. Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:2--22

We weep and moan over much in life, but you will weep no more if you wait upon the Lord fully trusting in Him for your needs. 

God works miracles by the dozen... can you allow yourself to imagine His touch transforming you? It is not the situation that will change but it is you that will change and how you look at things. 

Wait patiently during this time of advent and allow God's work to evolve and happen in your life.  Can you let Him into your heart? 

This truly is the way... walk in it.

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Friday, December 7, 2012

Missing things...Words of my Heart, A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

My heart, O God, is steadfast, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music. Psalm 57:7

This is my 'missing' Taylor 914 E.  I hope to replace it this next year as it was the guitar I always played in church with it's pickup.  Life happened and when it was suppose to come home to me, it was gone.

In the busiest times of our lives things happen and it is hard to realize things are not in our control. More often than not, our worst enemy is ourselves and our own sinful nature. Occasionally it is someone else near and dear to us. 

God can save us. During this time of advent remember to pray ceaselessly savoring this time before us and knowing only He can provide what we truly need in life. 

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Promise of Hope... Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.
Luke 12:27

This is a photo from last week and my last roses before all the cooler weather...although it is definitely warm outside today. 

When I have flowers around me I feel God's promise of a day filled with Hope. With hope I seek a peace and with that peace the grace of our Father.  

In anticipation of the birth of Jesus... we have the full promise from God providing us with hope. This is the time to spend our day in preparation and anticipation of what is to come to us spiritually. Are you open and ready? 

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Being Set Free... Words of my Heart, Texas Artist Laurie Pace

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of heaven. His love endures forever.” Psalm 136:1, 26

A short share this morning from one of our walks along the shores of the lake.  We are counting blessings as we go.

Today, turn to God, with all your needs. Part of the advent journey is learning to hope and trusting in what you cannot see.  Going through each day with confidence in God, knowing with that confidence comes a freedom in living. 

God will set us free... He is the God of power and might.

Words of my heart, Laurie

A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Easy to say but not easy to do, Words of my Heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, " Colossians 3:23

Sometimes it is so easy to say 'I am a believer'... but how easy is it to actually be one?  It is hard work. It takes sacrifice and giving of yourself to help others. It is not just sitting at home reading the bible...but it is working and striving to be the best you can be in His eyes. Striving to please Him. Time to renovate.

God can transform our  weakness, our sin, all conflict and all division.
From every life-less stump - where any future hope has been cut off
- a shoot of new life can sprout.

Are you hard at work as we begin Advent this year? This is the first week of advent and the perfect time to reflect on your actions this past year and what you can begin again with tomorrow. You do not have to wait for the new year... start fresh right now.

Throughout the day today, you can lighten your spirits and turn to God and pray.   Rejoice at the coming of your Son, for you and me!

Words of my Heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Monday, December 3, 2012

In the darkest Hour...Words of my Heart, A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

“Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.”  Colossians 3:16

Last night we were walking across a parking lot from the Verizon store to Staples. It was warm outside still at nightfall but a cool front was due to pass through.  It was still in the low seventies as we went into Staples.
We walked around gathering some things while waiting for my phone to be transfered and ready for me... and as we walked out of Staples an hour later the dark clouds were literally rolling across the sky and the moon would peak out from the thick clouds between the wind gusts.  It was remarkable beauty at night. There was absolutely no way for me to take a phone no camera...but the image of God's work is engraved in my mind with the brilliant moon edged by slight haze gleaming through the edges of the heavy night clouds. 

Just a reminder to me even in the darkest times His light is there and we only need to turn to find it. We want to begin our advent journey by turning to the Lord with great hope.  In the midst of so many discouraging challenges in our lives  and the violence in the world around us, 
spend this day in anticipation of the graces and gifts our God desires to give us as we begin this first week of advent.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Sunday, December 2, 2012

No Looking Back...Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Jesus replied, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God."  Luke 9:62

Taking on a task in life is heading into something with confidence and trust that God is guiding you on your way. If you stop believing and start doubting, you are looking back and giving up on the trust in the Father to continue supporting and providing for you. 

When you take something on take it on knowing it will require sacrifice and discipline but do it knowing the Lord is there for you through it all. 

As we begin advent...this is the time to ask Him for assistance in guiding and directing you through the preparation time of the coming of His Son.  

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Guilty as Charged, Words of my heart by Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26

Guilty as charged... Yes I worry. I worry about money, events, paintings and even what to cook for dinner each day.  

When I sit outside on the swing and listen to the symphony of birds, I am reminded they do NOT worry. They sing constantly raising praises to the Father.  

Next time I will remind myself to SING and not worry.  Be Happy and not worry. Praise God and not worry. Live in this moment focused on the Father and be content and in peace.

Share the love. Be not worry.

Words of my heart, Laurie
A Texas Artist Laurie Pace

Word of the Heart to share.... by Laurie Pace