When I first graduated college, I came back home (don't we all) and worked at my hometown newspaper for a little over a year. While I was there, I learned a TON--about writing on deadline, about writing with distractions all around you (seriously, have you ever BEEN in a newsroom?) and, surprisingly, about faith.
My favorite stories (other than columns, which, let's face it, we now call 'blog posts') were the lifestyle stories. The ones about people. All kinds of stories came across my desk. From a little girl who saved her sister's life to a murder trial one town over. A lot of those stories have stuck with me, including one about a woman who created her own "Promises from the Psalms."
She'd been battling cancer and to help bring comfort through it, she gathered all the Promises she could find in the book of Psalms. Now that she was healthy again, she bound the promises together and distributed them to others going through difficult times. And the whole idea of taking the time to find God's promises and write them on the pages of your heart just sunk in.
Years later, I've developed many incarnations of this. I scrapbook my faith, paint about it, put it up on the wall. And when someone I know is going through something difficult, I've found that sharing the promises I've found can be a great way to extend kindness.
Recently, I created a tiny book that I call "Pocket Promises" by hand stitching together about eight sheets of folded paper...
I love to make little books by hand. I'm not fancy about it and I sure don't know anything about real book-binding, but I've found that a simple stitch down the center holds everything in nicely:
On each page, I wrote a verse or two, promises that could bring comfort for a friend. Prayers that she could whisper and cling to, even on the hard days...
These words are life to me. I've been through some really crummy stuff over the past few years, and I found it was during that time I RAN straight to God...and he found me there, in the midst of my mess.
Obviously everyone reading this won't share my same beliefs, but you could create a book like this, one to keep in your pocket or purse, and fill it with encouraging quotes or words of wisdom.
Maybe it's because I'm a writer, but I believe words have POWER. So much power. Life and death kind of power...and while it's not always easy to speak life, to speak GOOD, it is always beneficial. And necessary. And rewarding.
I clipped all kinds of little things in here, more words, more promises, my own prayers. And I folded a heavier cardstock over the inside pages and adhered the outsides of the front and back to the covers.
This way, I got exactly the size I wanted, and it was 100% customizable.
I wrote the promises in the book, and took the time to read over them again and again, and I found this had a wonderful impact on me... but to give it away was even better.
I'm going to be sharing lots of other faith projects like this one in my Big Picture Class, Scrapbooking Your Faith. Registration is coming SOON, and I'm excited to share some easy, inspiring ways to incorporate faith in your layouts and projects. Maybe you'll join me?
What about you? Do you scrapbook (or paint or craft) your faith? What kind of impact does it have on you?