Monday, March 11, 2013

Because Sisters Share and the Soli Deo Gloria Party

Welcome to the Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood weekly party!  To find out ways that you can be involved in the Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood, please click here.
If you are planning to link up, would you kindly visit the person that arrived before you?  You never know what surprises you await in this community!  Prepare to be encouraged and loved.
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Today, I'd like to introduce you to Elizabeth.  She's a fellow SDG sister and she is wise with words and beautiful with art.  Y'all know how I love to support my sweet sisters and I'd like us all to support Elizabeth today...
A few years ago, when I finally redecorated our master bedroom, my vision centered around clean whites and creams contrasted with rich dark wood. The fact that our walls were already off-white -- and that I had found an awesome vintage four-poster mahogany bed -- just served to reinforce my visualization. Everything came together organically. We found practically matching dressers on Craigslist, a little mahogany writing desk at an estate sale, a cream-upholstered chair at a consignment shop, an off-white matelasse bedspread at a discount chain. My husband put up new thick crown molding and baseboard painted bright white to contrast with the light-cream walls and installed cherry-red wood flooring. I had a special pair of antique, hand-colored bird prints my sister gave me professionally framed. 

 My retreat in white was complete. 


The other day I was so tired by the time my almost-three-year-old son went down for his nap, I ached to lie down too. But, I knew I had less than two hours to do laundry, tidy the house, do dishes, catch up on email, prep dinner, and possibly write a blog post or network on FB or Twitter, or read one of a myriad different blogs I’d fallen behind on. So, I bounced from computer to kitchen sink to family room, too tired to do anything properly, and I heard His call for rest. 

All I could see was white, and I knew to head for the most restful room in the house. How fine it was to ease my dry bones down into colorless comfort. To cease striving. To wait for hope to be breathed back into my parched limbs and purpose infused into my soul. I think I only closed my eyes for about 20 delicious minutes, but I came up out of whiteness, refreshed. 

When I read the Isaiah passage (6: 1-8) for my daily Bible study two days later, I was struck by Isaiah’s reaction to the Lord in the vision the scripture described. Isaiah thought only of how sinful and unclean he was, how unworthy, to be commissioned by God. Once he was purified of sin, Isaiah turned abruptly from fearfully uncertain to joyfully willing, saying: “Here am I. Send me!” 

And, I knew in my heart, that in all my striving, I often forgot the most breathtaking truth: Confession and forgiveness heal, purify; ready us for God’s great commission in our lives. 

I knew I carried far too often the dark weight of guilt in my own imperfection and disappointment over my many sins when it could all be bleached to purest snow. Yes, I was the dark wood, a body darkened by years of sin-accumulation, but I could lie in a bed of pristine forgiveness whenever I chose. 

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What a relief it still is at night to come into our master bedroom. I always feel blessed with that clean, creamy expanse of wall, that exquisite snowy white trim, that neatly folded comforter over the high dark sides of the bed. To climb up into whiteness, to lie down in it and be still and silent, the body settling into itself after a day of continual motion; the mind turning pleasantly hazy – well, it’s like being washed clean. 

Do you seen this beauty below?  Enter to win using the Rafflecopter widget below.  If you don't win, read Elizabeth's bio to find out how you can save 20% off your order.etsy print 1 5x7

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Elizabeth grew up roaming her family's 220-acre farm and lives today in the suburbs with her three littles (10,8, and 3), her husband, and their ditsy but lovable English Springer Spaniel. She's a food freak, lover of all things DIY, and a reformed perfectionist She also has a habit of training for and running a half-marathon in the spring and then eating chocolate the rest of the year and avoiding exercise. A professional writer who’s worked in higher education and health care for the past 15 years, Elizabeth gave up her paying clients in September to work for a new boss. {She's says He's divine.}

You can find her writing about faith, family, and nature at www.seasonswithsoul.com and follow her on Twitter or Facebook. Elizabeth's recently launched Etsy shop, Seasons with Soul, features original photography, paired with typography and inspirational scriptures. She also takes orders for custom pieces, tailored with your preference of image and typography. She's offering a 20% discount code for Soli Deo Gloria sisters who decide to place an order. (Simply use code grandopening at checkout.)
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Are you new here? Welcome! We'd love to shower you with some love and encouragement, so if this is your first time linking up, will you put "I'm New!" as your caption under your linky picture? Want more info on what this sisterhood is all about? Read our new, revamped page by clicking here. 
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Want to show a sister some love? Tweet her post using the Twitter handle #sdgsisters. Make sure you check the # later for some great posts to read! 
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(linking up with Laura, for playdates, and Jen for Unite!)


34 comments :

  1. I love the all-white imagery. How beautiful to know that we can lie in that "bed of pristine forgiveness" whenever we choose.

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    1. Thanks, Lisa. I love thinking of white as forgiveness, as in Isaiah 1:18 -- though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.

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  2. Beautiful write, Elizabeth, and so nice to meet you. I share your love of dark wood and white comforters, chairs, soft hues, so restful. It lets the mind rest, just give in, doesn't it? Oh, yes, we need to always see our Father just like this. Thank you for this today, and I'm needing rest. You reminded me.

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    1. Nacole, so nice to meet you too, fellow SDG sister! We could all use more rest in our Father's arms, couldn't we?

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  3. This post makes me want to take a long nap in my cozy bed.....

    Blessings to you, Elizabeth :)

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    1. Blessings to you, friend! We need forgiveness and the rest that comes afterward more than we admit, don't we?

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  4. "In Quietness and Trust is your Strength" - oh, what a timely word:) I'm wanting to paint my bedroom this spring - when we moved in I chose a color too dark - I'm wanting refreshing light - not white but light:) Confession and forgiveness - as a mother I've learned more about asking forgiveness than I ever did before - asking it - and giving it:)Wishing you blessings this week!

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    1. The same sweet blessings to you, new friend! And, yes, as a mom of three, I need forgiveness. every. day.

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  5. Beautiful room! Love that verse in Isaiah, yet always mindful of what comes after it: "But you were not willing..."

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    1. Connie: You know, just that verse popped up my daughter's memory verse app, and I loved it, but didn't read the verses around it. Thanks for sharing. I just read the other verses. And, how apt. Don't we needlessly run away from God though He "longs to be gracious" to us?

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  6. What a lovely remodel and the verse and image - just lovely. Nice to also meet you here, Elizabeth. in addition via God-Sized Dream team :)

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    1. Dolly: Lovely to see you over here as well!

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  7. Love that verse, and the peace I have when I am willing...to trust and obey! And walk in forgiveness. Thanks for the chance - beautiful!

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  8. lovely write, with all the imagery. . . makes me remember to keep my own space a haven rather than allowing it to become cluttered throughout the week.
    thanks for sharing your heart!
    blessings,
    steph

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  9. I feel such peace imagining your new bedroom. My body just sighs and rolls into the comfort of the soft and comforting whiteness.
    It is just like snuggling down into God's warm embrace! Thanks for the encouragement, Elizabeth! It's such fun to see my GSD team members out and about!

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  10. Pristine forgiveness--beautiful words. Sinking into a bed of grace for a weary soul. I've thanked God for pointing me to the words I so needed to read.

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  11. I'm going to enjoy getting into bed tonight in a whole new way! I appreciate how you tied resting with forgiveness. We have to relax our shoulders, let down our defenses, for both. Lovely.

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  12. Beautiful post! Refreshed - so very needed. I get overwhelmed with all the tasks. Thanks for sharing!

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  13. OooohI was craving some pictures to go with this post, but I loved it all the same. Very powerful.

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  14. I crave rest sometimes too, so much so that the thought of doing another thing makes me want to cry. Spending time with God always leaves me refreshed and ready to take on whatever the day brings. Great post Elizabeth!

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  15. I just curled up in my cozy bed to take a little nap! Rest, Refresh, & Restore!
    And what a lovely print by Elizabeth!!!

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  16. Beautiful! Your writing is so restful to me and your bedroom sounds just heavenly. (And does She Speaks fall in the no exercise/eat chocolate time of year??? Because this girl will be packing some chocolate - and not exercising - hahaha!)

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  17. Beautiful, Elizabeth! Love the analogy. Timely for me too, as I just posted on confession:) How it ushers in more of God's love. Blessings, friend!

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  18. I loved this post - it was not only beautiful in thought but the picture you created with your words was absolutely gorgeous. I am a color person - my walls are painted warm golden yellow and terra cotta, but you make me long for a white room of my own.

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  19. The restfulness that comes with needing to confess is what spurs us toward God and keeps us coming back to him over and over. Thanks, once again, friend, for your beautiful words.

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  20. So beautiful, Jen! When we yield to Him completely, He gives us perfect peace. Thanks for the inspiring post & for hosting, & God bless!

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  21. A lovely post; for me, it's heading outside that's totally relaxing...to sit on the porch and drink in God's beauty. By he time I get to the bedroom, I've got about 30 seconds before I'm asleep...and I'd prefer it to be in the bed and not on my feet -grin-.

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  22. Oh my this room surely sounds divine...and I love the metaphor. Love this "Yes, I was the dark wood, a body darkened by years of sin-accumulation, but I could lie in a bed of pristine forgiveness whenever I chose." And your beautiful print!

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  23. Hi,
    I count gifts doing the joy Dare with Ann Voskamp. I wondered if I could use one of your pictures from this post for a clue: WHITE for March 12.? Please email me at authorjaniscox@gmail.com if that's okay. I am linking to your blog post. i will be posting it on Monday March18.
    Thanks,
    Blessings,
    Janis www.janiscox.com

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  24. Loved this..."How fine it was to ease my dry bones down into colorless comfort. To cease striving. To wait for hope to be breathed back into my parched limbs and purpose infused into my soul. I think I only closed my eyes for about 20 delicious minutes, but I came up out of whiteness, refreshed." What a blessing you have in your sanctuary! Thanks for the reminder of rest. With Joy, Carey

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  25. I feel rested after reading about your sweet sanctuary space, Elizabeth. It sounds so lovely. When I offer up my heart, how He makes me whiter than snow...

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  26. Thanks for all the ways your bring beauty to our world with your life, vision, and words, Elizabeth!

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  27. Beautiful images, Elizabeth Anne, and beautiful sentiments. So grateful for a God Who is always ready to forgive and purify.

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  28. Elizabeth, such a beautiful post! And your bedroom sounds like an amazing sanctuary. Thanks for the reminder of how important it is to rest our weary souls :)

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