Come along with me each month as I journal my way through the Bible. I'm not artistic at all, so you won't see beautiful illustrations and calligraphy, but what you will see is what I gleaned from the scriptures every day and how I creatively journaled what I have learned in the margins of my Inspire Bible.
Since I finished coloring in all the pre-printed images of my Inspire Bible, I've been going back and illustrating all the pages that don't have pre-printed images on them. I've been following an old devotional of mine which took me to 1 Samuel and Ephesians, then ended up in the book of Job for over two months! So this month, and next you will see Bible Journaling pages in Job, and let me tell you, Job is not an easy book to illustrate, but I did it!
Let's start with my 1 Samuel page. In this story, Samuel is telling King Saul that the Lord fulfilled what He said he would do: taking the kingdom from Saul and give it to David. Now, even though the verse is said in a negative way to King Saul, I looked at it in a more positive way, whether good or bad, if God says He's going to do something, He does it! God is faithful and keeps His word! So I too can count on all of God's promises in the Bible to be fulfilled.
The book of Ephesians was a letter written to the churches in Ephesus. Ephesus was know for its idolatry and pagan practices. The Ephesus Christians were primarily Gentiles who didn't have the life experience of the Jewish laws and culture. Just like today, the new Christians were living in a pagan culture quite contrary to what the Old Testament taught, so they needed encouragement and guidance to help them understand how to live their faith in an ungodly world.
For my page, I highlighted the verse "Live as People of Light" because that is what I took as the most important principle in chapter five; but I love the words that come before and after this phrase: "For once you were full of darkness, but now you have LIGHT FROM THE LORD. So live as people of LIGHT! For this LIGHT within you produces only what is good and right and true." It is an admonishment to me to be a light in this extremely dark world.
And now I begin my two month journey into the book of Job. Job is a tough, depressing book to read. It explores the question everyone always asks "Why do good people suffer?" and you know what? It never really answers that question. It's hard spending two months in this book, reading about someone's suffering. But I think reading it is important for we see the value in patience and perseverance in waiting on the Lord. We also see the importance of just being there for our friends when they are suffering and learning how to hold our tongues. And finally, we see God's faithfulness and restorative power.
For my first journaling page in the book of Job, I simply hand-wrote some notes with just a few illustrations. Bible Journaling doesn't have to include a pretty picture. There are several Bible Journalists I follow who simply write creatively in their Bibles and do not use any images.
For this page, when I read about how Job wished he had never been born at all. Many people today think it's better to not be born at all than to lead a life of suffering. But the word of God says the opposite in Romans 5:3-5 so I hand-wrote that verse in the margins of my Bible, then I added a rainbow as a symbol of hope.
Many verses in Job often brought to mind other verses in the Bible. In Job 4:3-4 we are told that Job was an encouraging person to those who were weak. I thought of 1 Thessalonians 5:11 where it tells Christians to "encourage one and another and build each other up", so I hand wrote that verse in my Bible and added some ephemera from my "Unyielding Hope" kit. I still have so much ephemera from that kit! Even though I purchased a new Bible Journaling kit from Illustrated Faith
, I am bound and determined not to open that one till I used EVERYTHING from my old kit first. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, you will have to go back and read this post HERE!
Here is an example of how I did a page based on some Bible commentary notes. Here "Enduring Word"
Bible Commentary had an excellent reflection on Job's sentence "I don't have the strength to endure. I have nothing to live for". At this point in the story, Job just wanted to die. His suffering had become too much to endure. The "Enduring Word" Bible Commentary said "Remember this story" when your prayer isn't answered. "Thank God" that the Lord didn't answer Job's prayer and end his life, for his suffering did eventually end and everything taken from him was restored twofold! Can you just imagine if the Lord did answer Job's prayer and end his life? He not only would have never experienced God's restorative power and blessings, but his witness to all his family and friends would have been lost. His story would have ended tragically instead of a powerful miracle that possibly strengthened the faith of all who watched.
This page I created based on the verse "What are people, that you should make so much of us, that you should think of us so often?" This sentiment is also reflected in Psalm 8. It reminded me of how much God love us, so I created a page contemplating divine love.
In Job 9:4 Job says "God is so wise and so mighty", and in Job 9:9 he says "He made all the stars". Throughout the book of Job, nature is referred to as an example of God's wisdom and power. I love to be in nature. It always brings me closer to Him and it where I feel His presence the most.
Psalm 139 and Job 10 are powerful verses to support the sanctity of human life. It's amazing to me that even before the science of ultrasounds, these words were written in the Bible.
Here I did a page illustrating the transcendence of God. Although Zophar here is scolding Job for questioning God, I think there is some validity in his statement for God is so vast that we can't possibly understand everything Him, such knowledge is "Higher than the Heavens". When things go wrong in our lives that we can't possibly understand, we just have to trust Him that He is all knowing and all powerful and that there is a very good reason things are the way are.
Job desperately wanted to know what, if anything, he did wrong to endure so much suffering. His words "Tell me, what have I done wrong? Show me my rebellion and my sin" (Job 13:23) reminded me of David's words in Psalm 139 so I did a page on that Psalm.
Many things Job questioned are answered in the New Testament like when he wishes for a mediator in chapter 9, verse 33. 1 Timothy 2:5 says Jesus is our mediator. And in Job 14:14 Job asks "Can the dead live again?" The answer is "Yes!" "God has given us eternal life through His son Jesus!" (1 John 5:11). We can have peace in death for we will live again!
While reading Job's story, I was reminded of another Bible verse: Romans 12:12. It says to "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer." I decided to illustrate this verse with stamps and then write a little personal note of prayer.
I hope I was able to encourage and minister to you today. We all go through trials and suffering in our lives. Like Job, we ask God "Why?" We may never know the answer in this life, but Job and other scriptures provide the answer as to how we are to act and think while we are suffering.
Have A Great Day! Amy
Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!
LOVE your journalingReplyDelete
Thanks so much!Delete
Amy, I love how you brought in so many other verses from the Bible in your study and journaling of Job. Isn't it beautiful how God ties his word together across centuries and makes it so real to us today?ReplyDelete
Thank you. I'm glad you noticed that. When reading Job, other scriptures that answered his questions just kept coming to my mind.Delete
So creative and a great way to read thru the scriptures. Thanks so much for linking up at the Unlimited Link Party 99. Shared.ReplyDelete
Thanks Dee, and you're welcome!Delete
Amy, these posts always leave me smiling and inspired. What joy it must bring to the Lord to see you worshiping Him through your art. Beautiful.ReplyDelete
Thank you, you're so sweet.Delete
These are beautiful and inspiring! I have an art journaling Bible, but I hesitate to mark it up with such abandon. I should really get over that and enjoy expanding on the thoughts and images, it's a wonderful way to make the text one's own.ReplyDelete
Thanks so much. It was hard for me to mark up my bible too. But then I decided this was a bible specifically designed to mark up, so it was ok. At first I thought "Oh no, I ruined my pretty bible" but then it started to evolve into its own work of art, pretty in a different way, and filled with memories. My new philosophy is have at least one bible you can mark up as freely and as much as you wish, and then have other bibles that are strictly for studying and reading.Delete
That's really helpful, thanks!Delete
Your illustrations are so beautiful and full of hope! What a gift! The book of Job is a hard one to read and often to understand (there's a reason it's called Wisdom Literature!) but it's valuable to sit with all the questions it raises and contemplate how the rest of Scripture answers them, just as you've done. Visiting from Sweet Tea today.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much! Yes, I discovered as I was reading that many of the questions Job asked are answered in the rest of the BibleDelete
Your bible journaling is so beautiful! I need to consider trying these since I love art journaling so much. How do you decide which scripture verses to focus on?ReplyDelete
thank you. When I read a page, there is usually always a scripture that jumps out at me and makes me want to mediate on it and explore it more.Delete
I love to look at your Bible journaling pages. Interesting that you highlighted the verse about "Light." This past Sunday, we read the scripture from Matthew where Jesus says "You are the light of the world." So -- the choir sang an old gospel song: "This Little Light of Mine." Thank you for sharing this post in the Talent-Sharing Tuesdays Link-Up 51.ReplyDelete
I'm so happy to hear that. I love that children's gospel song!Delete
I have started the new year Bible journaling more regularly. And I always think of you and your lovely pages and inspirational posts when I pick up my colored pencils and gel pens. My favorite verses of Scripture speak to the light God provides in our lives and on our paths. So reassuring that when we have a relationship with Him we never walk alone.ReplyDelete
That is so good to hear! Thanks so much!Delete
I look forward to seeing your Bible journaling page's. These are beautiful and you did stunning work in Job.ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing this with Sweet Tea & Friends this month dear friend.
Thank you! Job was a challenge to illustrate, that's for sure.Delete