His Love Endures Forever

His Love Endures Forever

It is a happy day because His Love Endures Forever.

Every day is a happy day in this knowing… even in the midst of the mess… in the silence as my soul awaits for God alone to instruct me in His Word.

His Word… how did it come so alive in me?

One day I wanted nothing to do with it… I did try on occasion to read the Holy Book, but the words… they were garbled. I’d read and re-read and re-read because I couldn’t make them out.

What did they say? What were these confusing words? I’d put it all away, shaking my head, wondering what it was all about, and thinking it obviously wasn’t for me.

Something changed all that. Something I can only explain as His time… to call upon me… to say enough.

Enough of the seeking in all the wrong places. Enough of the years going by in circles, repeating patterns.

Enough of a lifetime of never feeling enough… of doubts… and aloneness, an aching aloneness even where love was everywhere… because worldly love is not the same as His Love.

One day a tap on the shoulder came… a whisper of hope, of love, of peace in the darkness.

Jesus.

He made Himself known to me. He encouraged me to call upon Him in my times of need. He said He was here to help us… in this world. There seemed to be an urgency about it.

He told me to draw Him close and not let go. He walked with me and somehow, He filled me up with hope… with teachings on a new way to live, in the knowing that He loved me.

He loved me?

He. Loved. Me.

My heart quickened. It softened. It opened. Calling upon Him… talking to Him… sharing all that tormented me in my brokenness.

And the Holy Book began coming alive in me…. In my fingertips as I turned the pages… in my eyes that thirsted for the Light coming off the Words… in my heart that filled up with a need to spill over… up, up, up the rivers flowed.

Now, the Words… they are the air I breathe. They live in me. Every. Day. They are my daily bread.

His very Word spoken to me.

“For we know, brothers and sisters loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.”

~ 1 Thessalonians 1:4-6

Oh yes!

What means this? How is it possible?

There were times in my dark hours, when I’d think of Him and His hand extended… my head bowed… my breathing hilting and labored… pain ruling my body… my ache for the ways I could not make me feel love for myself, and for all the ways this ache hit upon others as surely as a tongue lashing or a beating with fists.

And, I asked myself, “What have I got to lose?” in the reaching out and accepting the hand tendered.

This Way. This Truth. This Light. Stretching out from fingers to air to me. I took His hand, and He became my strength.

I didn’t understand it all. Surely, I didn’t.

I could never understand all the talk about Jesus having died for our sins. I could not wrap my head around that one. It made no sense to me.

I acknowledged Jesus existed. I acknowledged that he died on the cross. But, what sins? How could his death over 2,000 years ago have anything to do with me?

It took months of studying the scriptures and watching movies about the Bible and Jesus… it took me having to recite the events of His life time and again… it took my own life review, praying and making amends… understanding that sin was really anything that kept me from experiencing God’s Love (God’s Love is always there and always endures but that doesn’t mean we EXPERIENCE it, does it?) to make sense of it.

Then one day, as surely as the Holy Book claimed me… it came. I could look into His heart, as He could look into mine. His breath became the air I breathed. His Presence… the Living Waters of which I drank, and it felled me.

It felled me.

Love filled the aching emptiness and broke everything wide open… the mind… the heart… the soul. Wide. Deep. High. Open.

And, I understood the grace of his death was my saving. Does that make sense? I’m reading these words just written, and I don’t know… do they convey what it is for an anguished pounding heart delivered into a new life? From numbness, empty living to everlasting… ever eternal peace and joy?

His death for Love. His death for kindnesses. His death for peace. His death for Truth. His death for All.

His Risen.

Rises in each one of us who is ready and called to believe in the power of Love.

I can see the Love in His eyes. I can feel the Love in His walk with me… in His talk with me… in His heart that finds mine.

What is it like to surrender my ways, my will for the Holy?

I am found. I am new. I have new life.

I am defined by His promises, which are many… and, shaped by His Word.

So yes, oh happy day. Yesterday. Today. Tomorrow. To live, with all that comes with life, the loves and losses… in the knowing that His Love Endures Forever.

In the knowing that He Loves Me… and He Loves You, even if you’ve never heard His name… He Loves you too.

So yes, oh happy day. As brush to paint in the making of this piece ‘His Love Endures Forever’ – a little something to celebrate Him in glory. I’ve got a frame in mind to affix this (heavy textured paper) piece to… please pray I don’t wreck it in the process.

 

His Love Endures Forever by Kiernan Antares

His Love Endures Forever | 18 x 24″ Acrylic on Paper

 

 

Heart to heart, love to love, may His face shine upon you,

Kiernan

xoxo

Love Broke Open: Part Three

Love Broke Open: Part Three

I cannot… I absolutely cannot… even after months… get through this song without His Grace and Glory coming up in me from the depths of my soul.

And all the earth will shout Your praise
Our hearts will cry, these bones will sing
Great are You, Lord

In Part One I announce that something life changing was happening to me this year. In Part Two I plunged forward and revealed that I answered the call from God and was given new life in Christ through baptism.

There was so much more than I can comprehend taking place in between. But, these massive in-between bits led this former new-ager who struggled with guilt, shame, indecision and insecurities, into becoming a Christian woman of substance, deep conviction and fully ready to commit to the Lord and my beloved.

Always I found faults and looked for cracks… anything to excuse why I could not commit… to my heart, my passions, my relationships. Always keeping doors open in case I needed an exit, which I usually did.

Studying the Bible changed everything. It made me get real with myself and it made me get right with God.

The Word came alive in me. How is it possible for a book to come alive and know me so personally? Know my every thought and deed? Know where I’ve struggled, where I’ve fallen, how I’ve been broken, and the emptiness… the aching emptiness longing to be filled?

As I opened the pages to my first study assignment:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”

~ John 1:1-5 NIV

I took slow deep breaths reading again… ‘In the beginning was the Word’…

My eyes drifted closed… my hands touched the pages… smoothing across… feeling something happening in the paper… ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God’…

My fingers caressed the Word… the silky, smooth skin of paper… my eyes sparkling grabbed hold and this book… it began to feel so very Holy… ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’

I watched my hands bring this Holy Book up to my heart to rest there.

How did it know that Words were one of my most favourite thing, my most prized, delighted and coveted thing to behold?

And the poetic nature of it? What did it mean? What was it really saying?

So much more than what I was interpreting in those moments, I would discover over the months of continuing studies.

But still… the words… the Word…

How was it possible that I had been so critical and skeptical of this Holy Book that could reach down into the depths of my life and turn it into something new, without even having read it?

It quickened me.

It gave me hope.

It made me see.

It made me feel.

It provided me with a refuge to pour out my heart and take a good honest look at my life. I know that’s not an easy thing for many, because it’s so much easier to blame everything and everyone else for our circumstances, rather than take responsibility.

But the truth came a knocking and something deep deep deep inside told me that this was the Way… The Truth… The Light.

I prayed… hard… every day… to get right with God… to get right with my life and to get right with the people in my life.

Tangled difficult relationships with my beloved’s daughters, “Lord help me! Please help me create peace and harmony!”

And… I knew when the moments came… Holy Holy Holy answered my prayers, ‘I’m so sorry for all the pain I’ve caused’ was what it took to soften, broken hardened hearts. Letting go of all my grievances brought me closer to Love and to God.

“Why, oh why Lord can I not be the daughter my parents need me to be towards the end of their lives? The daughter your Word tells me I must be in your house?”

Hmmm… Ah… I see anger… I see fear… I see… resentment. They are going to leave me one day… soon. I might as well put up walls and live behind them instead of love them well in the here and now.

The things that started becoming clear, one-by-one… a roadmap for living beautifully alive in the Word.

Looking into my heart, no stones unturned, but one. The scariest one. It shook me, rattled me, ravaged me.

In one breath… one realization… my heart revealed the depth of my feelings of unworthiness of love.

Love Broke Me Open… it spit me out and demanded that I know the truth… that God loved me and He will not forsake me… but I had a choice to make.

Could I commit… Would I commit… to LOVE… to Love… to love?

And so, the love story goes…

The music cued, and Josh Groban’s ‘When You Say You Love Me’ floated out on the breeze. As my son walked me to the alter, every emotion… every shade of love heaved in my chest, and threatened to spill over.

 

Then I saw him.

Standing there looking so handsome.

Waiting for me.

I witnessed us taking each other in, then our eyes locked, and the only thing I heard from that moment on was the song that was written in our hearts.

I saw nothing else but him… and the love and adoration in his eyes.

As God is my witness, the joy on this day is without question, without hesitation the result of His Word, His compelling, alive words, at work breaking me open to know love… all kinds of love.

Honestly, there’s no way prior to a few short weeks ago that I could possibly dream… or imagine… that this joy would be possible.

Yes, I feel deeply, as my favourite minister says. I wear my heart and my truth inside out… for all to see.

God has instilled me with a yen… a yearning… for the written word… how to describe?? Ah… here it is;

“Gracious words are a honeycomb,

sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”

~ Proverbs 16:24

And, they seem to want to come pouring out now more than ever. More willfully than ever. That’s why my work and this website is undergoing changes. To make room for the Words, for the works that are waiting to come to this refuge to fill the empty aching place inside… for all those who need inspiration, encouragement, hope… for those hearts who are seeking and ready to be quickened.

May you be blessed by Love,

Kiernan

“LORD, you alone are my portion and my cup;

You make my lot secure.

The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;

Surely I have a delightful inheritance.

I will praise the LORD, who counsels me;

Even at night my heart instructs me.

I will keep my eyes always on the LORD.

With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

~ Psalm 16:5-8 NIV

 

A little bit shaken and a little bit stirred…

A little bit shaken and a little bit stirred…

“Love is the vital core of the soul.

And of all you see, only love is infinite.”

~ Rumi

A quick update, my friends. I had been feeling off for a couple of weeks and Saturday I ended up going to emergency. I’m so grateful for the kind and compassionate doctor who looked after me and I was able to go home the same day. But it’s kind of taken the wind out of me. I’ve been mostly home recuperating and unplugging since then.

I have to admit, while it wasn’t serious, it was enough of an event to realize that there are some things that need to become more of a priority with my health – in body, mind and heart. More ways in which LOVE must lead the way.

I find times that when the ground beneath me trembles and quakes, it stirs a powerful elixir of healing and deeper gratitude to be alive. It shines a light on a pathway home to the heart.

Wouldn’t you agree?

Exploring the Realms of Self Love

Exploring the Realms of Self Love

“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.”

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Too much time wasted trying to change. Believing this is wrong, that is wrong. Too this. Too that.

Too big. Too small. Too much. Too little… never enough.

The truth of it is, all the things we’re criticized over are really the foundation for our gifts and talents. What makes us special.

Be the joyful hummingbird, if you are, because you bring light to the hearts of others.

 

 Be the soft waters, if you are, because you bring light to the flow of change.

 

Be the fierce fearless one, if you are, because you bring light to the masses.

 

Be the deep thinker, if you are, because you bring light to the minds of others.

 

The piece I am currently working on explores the concept that to love oneself is the kindest and greatest act and gift to ourselves and the world. To love oneself is to KNOW oneself – intimately.

It is to practice forgiveness and compassion. It is the foundation to be right with self and others.

It is the basis to live in harmony and to know the type of happiness and joy that is specific for your true nature.

Not quite finished yet… but close… I think.

Kiernan

“You are the light of my heart and the comfort of my soul”

~ Rumi

Journey to Love with the Stars of Egypt’s Embrace

Journey to Love with the Stars of Egypt’s Embrace

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.”

~ Oscar Wilde

And a new one begins…

The heart ashore… the stars above… the temples within…

My parents are ailing and now more than ever I am becoming aware of the cries of healing of the past, from generations before to the present. Where things are both mine and not mine, yet often feel like they are more than mine… Mine to alchemize.

To transform from lead into gold. The task is both easy and not… it is all in the willingness to become aware, to accept rather than deny, and then love all that is and was.

Painting and writing are becoming my best friends, for it is through the taking it from the inside to expressing it on the outside, in colour, in strokes, in words that may not make sense to anyone else, that I become more whole than I was.

Today, I take to the panel the desire to practice the act of self-love, because it is only through LOVE that we can liberate our hearts… and creative expression is the way.

I wonder if our longing to touch the divine is really our need to fully love ourselves – beauty and warts, light and shadow – all of it in its entirety?

“Nothing is wrong, nothing is wasted, nothing is neurotic, nothing is disowned, everything is possible in art”

~ Julia Cameron

I had a burning desire this morning to collage onto this newly primed panel some papyrus sheets I’ve had for years. I don’t know how much, if any, of the texture will be noticeable as the piece progresses because I paint with thick layers… but it’s there… the ancient Egyptian Goddesses and their temples have been invited to play with us…

Papyrus is a thick type of paper material originally prepared in ancient Egypt from the pithy stem of a water plant, used in sheets throughout the ancient Mediterranean world for writing or painting on and also for making rope, sandals, and boats.

With my handmade Tibetan singing bowl I call in the angels…

The layers of paint begin…

Scraping… blending… scratching… scraping.

Some of the papyrus is still visible.

May love be the journey,

Kiernan

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