Greetings beloved Illustrated Faith Family!
Have you ever felt overwhelmed with big things? Heavy stuff that threatens to bury you under it’s weight. Things you can’t change. Things that immobilize you and threaten to take your breath away if you focus on them too long. Stuff that makes you feel weak in the knees.
The other day, I found myself doing just that and God put this quote in front of me –
Be faithful in the small things because it is in them that your strength lies.
It was like a road map from heaven, a release from solving all the big stuff that was piling up around me. The key has always been in the little things.
One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much…
Luke 16:10 ESV
Sometimes, all God asks is for us to open our eyes to the little things we can do; and then one baby step at a time, we make our way along the road.
The big stuff is still there but because our eyes are always looking for the next little thing, we are moving bit by bit, praising Him in the small details, making progress, seeing changes, moving ahead.
The big stuff loses power. It can’t bury us in darkness and the immobility of the impossible.
And I thought, I love how God weaves so much in the little details — songs of the birds, the scent of flowers, the shapes of leaves, and the clouds filtering the sun — and I exhaled.
I can faithfully live in the little things for a bit until He shows me what I need to do with the big stuff. I can listen to the birds sing and praise Him. I can sweep my floors and thank him for crumbs. I can lift prayers of petition and thanksgiving over all I see and over all whom I love. I can let my eyes appreciate the design of a tulip. I can do a load of laundry and praise Him that I have a washer and dryer. I can let kind words fall from my lips. I can read the next chapter in my training books. I don’t have to solve everything, and I don’t have to always understand. Sometimes my job is to just do the next little thing God puts in front of me and draw strength from each small step.
Let’s journal truth friends –
I adore flowers. They make me happy to look at and to paint. They are a little thing God uses to bring joy to my heart. I decided to paint a simple bouquet to illustrate the truth of strength in little things. I started with puddles of color on my white board. It’s sometimes fun to just pop out the little trays from your Illustrated Faith palette.
I made a puddle of pink and then combined pink and orange to make a more coral color.
Next two greens. The first is straight up spring green and the second is spring green mixed with the teal.
I love the Zig travel brush because the bristles are springy and hold lots of color. Simple little flower buds are just strokes of color laid down in a circular motion.
When you press into your brush into the paper, your strokes become wider. A light stroke is thinner. Varying the pressure gives the petals a more natural look. After I laid down the initial petals, I went back in and dropped in saturated color straight from the pigment tray. Examples of dropping in color can be found here https://www.illustratedfaith.com/watercolor-tutorial-leaning-no-beginning-no-end/ and here https://www.illustratedfaith.com/watercolor-tutorial-leaning-teach-fly/
Drying in between colors is important if you don’t want the colors freely mingle. In these flowers I wanted my petals to be more distinct.
Next up I added my coral strokes.
A few lines of green for the stems. I used a long straight brush and stroked down the spring green first and went back in while the lines were still wet tapping in a few places of tealish green. Last step was stroking down some pure spring green straight from the pigment tray. Remember with watercolors, layers are your friend!
Adding some fountain leaf strokes for whimsy.
And there you have it, a simple little bouquet of happy blooms.
Now to add Mother Teresa’s quote. Pencil first. Illustrated Faith precision pen next.
A close up of the blooms. I love how you can see almost every stroke of color.
I highlighted the text and added a few taps of straight teal to the stems and leaves.
Tabbie time! The Illustrated Faith You are Loved designer clip and tabbie are perfect.
A bit of Illustrated Faith Criss Cross Washi, some hexies, and a Seeds of Faith enamel button!
Am I done?
Could be… but that Criss Cross Washi tape! Those beautiful little dashes of color — they led me further into more small details. I first added some black scribble contrast lines with my Illustrated Faith precision pen to the lettering and the flowers along with a few white lines to the flowers with my Uni white gel pen.
But that washi, it kept whispering color, more colors! Do supplies ever speak to you? Hmm… maybe it’s just me! Anyway, I pulled out some colored gel pens and added more little details of rainbow color.
It’s like little bits of rainbow promise all over the bouquet and scripture. Little details. Perfect.
I hope that on the days things are too big, you remember Mother Teresa’s wisdom and just keep your eyes on the next little thing. If you illustrate this truth in your Bible or make a bouquet, tag me on Instagram @designsbyamybruce — It makes my day to see your creations!
So many hugs,
Ranger Heat Tool | #6 Princeton Select Flat Wash | #2 Princeton Select Round | Zig Medium Tip H20 Travel brush| White Board | Uni-ball Signo White Gel Pen | Sakura Souffle Gel Pens – Orange, Pink, Blue and Yellow