"For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself." (Galatians 6:3)
You can't become something until you realize you are nothing. Man, without the Lord's restraining power, would descend into the depths of wickedness. You've heard people refer to a man as "good.” His sin might not be as obvious as others, but that does not make him good. You can see dirt but you can't see germs, but germs are more harmful to your health than dirt. You won't find gold dust in a pigsty and you won't find holiness in man.
It is true that not all men are equally bad, and many sinners have done noble things. But one transgression wipes out our good deeds and renders them all worthless.
When a person realizes they are worthless, God changes that worthless junk into a golden medal. Our worth is not found in ourselves, but in Christ. "The best of men have been always the readiest to confess their depravity. The holiest men, the most free from impurity, have always felt it most. He whose garments are the whitest, will best perceive the spots upon them." *
*C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Sermons Volume One (Hendrickson Publishers, 2016), 235.
You've heard of the expression “Christmas in July.” I celebrate Christmas in July, August, and pretty much the whole six months leading up to Christmas. Hobby Lobby hauls in their Christmas supplies in the summer about the same time I start hauling out my pencils and paints for all my Christmas crafts. All the paintings, cards, and gifts I make necessitate this early preparation date (that sounds like a line from a Christmas song). I draw more for Christmas than any other season.
I try to work on the least Christmasy Christmas stuff first because I like to save the most Christmasy artwork till November and all the decorations hypnotize my mood into the winter jollity. Plus, I make it a rule that I can't listen to my Christmas playlist until the very end of October, and I like to listen to Christmas music while I'm drawing Christmas cards. Up until then, I listen to Frozen music while I'm card-creating (which is sort of Christmasy, at least wintery anyway).
Sometimes my Christmas card ideas come super early. I've been known to come up with Christmas card ideas a whole year in advance (sometimes more). I have two friends whose cards I have planned already for the next two Christmases!
How soon do you start your Christmas crafts?
"And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
Ever since man was born, he fancies a feather will saw off his chains. If the feather blows away, then he hopes in a twig. When the twig breaks, he trusts in a mushroom. Then when someone hands him the key, he tosses it away because he didn't find it himself.
Salvation only resides in God and only through Christ's sacrifice. We can imagine as many saviors as we want—but they will not save us. Nothing we have done, are doing, or will do can save us. Good deeds are wonderful and so are cupcakes but neither are very helpful at unlocking a bolted door. Good works are the assurance of salvation, but never the source. Let us cling to the golden key, remembering it is our only hope for redemption.
Mariposa is a self-taught artist who captures the glories of God's creation on canvas. She has a Ph.D. in creativity and a masters degree in imagination.
Aberdeen is a book-eating, ink-drinking dinosaur from the createtus period. When he isn't falling into plot holes or taking cover from the volcano of ideas, he's hanging out with Dee-Dee the doodledactyl. Read full bio