Coming Back to Center—The Psalms

Title: Coming Back to Center—The Psalms
Artwork by: Zach Stuef(@stuefcreative)
Description: 
This project is the culmination of a time where I needed to refocus my life on the Cross after a particularly hectic work season when I was a design intern with a major company in Detroit. During that season, I focused solely on myself and my own professional development, diminishing the significance of Christ’s role in my life and neglecting to seek out my Savior for guidance. I realised it was necessary for me to refocus and come back to the center—where Jesus should always be.

I was led to ponder over His words in the book of Psalms and draw creativity out of it. The ultimate goal of this series for me was to explore distilling chunks of meaningful Scripture into a single image. Here are a few meaningful lessons that stood out to me.

I hope that this encourages you to focus on Christ as much as it has helped me.

 

Psalm 133

This psalm celebrates how beautiful it is when believers live in unity and love! When we stick together as a community through our ups and downs, and build each other up, the psalm promises that God will bless us and make us fruitful. Like dew falling on Mount Zion, that cools the air and refreshes the earth, brotherly love will make us flourish spiritually. How important it is for us to grow and love each other in Christ!

 

Psalm 3

This is a psalm that was penned by David when he was running from his enemies. Despite his distress, David’s genuine faith in God shone through. David boldly asked God for help because He knew that God will never fail him. Likewise, in difficult circumstances, we can call out to God, knowing He will never fail us. God delivers us and provides for us. Even though a multitude of enemies surround us, we will not falter for salvation belongs to the Lord.

 

Psalm 102

When we are hit with affliction like the psalmist, we should look to God, our Savior. He is strong, steady and consistent like a lighthouse, guiding our way amid the storms of life. God has compassion on His people and will grant us sufficient grace to press on through difficulties. Let us praise and honor God, for He is worthy of our praise!

 

Psalm 139

God is omniscient and omnipotent. He knows our every thought, feeling, and action. No matter where we go, He will always be with us. As our Creator, God knows us inside and out. Let us take comfort in the knowledge that God is with us and will help us wherever we are. Let us invite God to sanctify, search, and know our hearts intimately.

 

From God’s Heart To Yours

Title: From God’s Heart To Yours
Artwork by: Estelle Quek (@morethanworks)
Description: 
It’s Valentine’s Day! We all know it’s d-day where we celebrate love, whether you are attached or single. It’s a day we associate with giddy feelings, chocolates and balloons, and of course, love letters!  

At some point in our lives, we’ve probably written a love letter to a loved one before (and you might even be writing one now). There’s something deeply personal and meaningful about receiving a love letter—especially when it comes from our Creator Himself. Here’s a few of them, just for you.

God’s love is eternal. He will always be with us through this life and beyond. It doesn’t matter what challenges life might throw our way, we can be sure that He will be there to walk us through it.

Deuteronomy 31:6 : “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

 

We might attempt to fill our lives with love through relationships, things, or experiences–but only God’s love can complete and satisfy us.

1 John 4:16 :  So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

 

God’s love is sacrificial. We were bought at a price—one that cost His life. Through His death, we’ve been redeemed and made right with God, so we can now put aside the things of the past and live lives of purity and holiness.

Romans 5:8 : but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

 

Sometimes it can feel like we’re far away from God when we’re in the thick of trials and troubles. But His Word assures us that nothing in this world can ever separate us from His love. Cling on to this truth and let it comfort and strengthen us through tough times.

Romans 8:38-39 : For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

When we receive Christ into our lives, He gives us His Holy Spirit so that we are able to fully experience His love for us, understand His ways–and fill the lives of those around us with His love.

Romans 5:5 : And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

 

 

Calming Anxious Minds

Title: Calming Anxious Minds
Artwork by: Emilia Ting (@emiliating_96)
Description: 
Like a sailor on stormy, unchartered waters, life’s storms can make us fearful and worried. However, with Christ in our vessel we can smile at the storm, safe in the knowledge that He will see us safely through to shore. So take a deep breath and hang on to that hope–you can cast your cares on Him!

 

The journey of our lives is often filled with uncertainty. Sometimes, we worry and panic when we think about what lies before us.

 

When storms threaten to rage against us, fear arise in our hearts and we begin to sink under the wave of our anxieties.

 

During times like these, it helps to keep our minds fixed on what matters most–and just keep going.

 

Instead of focusing on the waves, anchor our hope in God. He is like a steady lighthouse that will help us find our way.

 

Be still and trust in Him, and He will lead us safely away from the waves of this life, and onto the shore.

 

 

 

Journey of Sexual Purity

Title: Journey of Sexual Purity
Artwork by: Ross Boone (@rossboone)
Description: 
These images depict some of the emotional dynamics of trying to resist temptation. For me, it applies to my struggles with masturbation and my past struggle with pornography. But the same process drives other temptations like alcohol, over-eating, or even bingeing on TV shows.

I believe that God can use our struggles to help others. So as I have dealt with my temptations, I’ve tried to note what helped and what didn’t. I hope that you or someone you love can learn or benefit from these illustrated concepts.

 

Sometimes, when we slip and fall into temptation, the guilt and shame we feel drive us to do it a few more times. As a result, we completely “fall off the wagon” and find ourselves unable to get up again.

So whenever we’re tempted by sin, it helps to remember that more may be at stake then just one little slip.

 

 

On the journey of resisting temptation, we will slip and make mistakes—but not everything is lost if we can learn from them. Even though it sometimes feels like we are falling back to square one, it helps to remember that what we’ve learned through every mistake can strengthen us and help us go further.

 

 

The choice to abstain from a temptation can feel a bit like carrying a burden. Sometimes I feel weighed down by it and have found myself thinking, “How could I ever carry this forever? Let me just put it down for a while.”

But if I picture it (purity) as a burden that is meant to be carried, because it keeps me focused on who God wants me to be, I almost enjoy carrying it!

 

 

When does a first look become more than just a look? My mentor used to tell me, “The first look is free”, but if we do not catch ourselves at this point, we may not realize that letting our eyes linger can create inappropriate desire, discontentment, and eventually cause us to indulge in what we’re trying to resist.

 

 

We often think that one little vice isn’t really that bad. But that’s because we don’t see how it could lead us away from a glorious, satisfying righteousness towards the slippery slope of a self-indulgent life with less self-discipline.