Seville Arts Project makes a Splash!

The Seville Arts Project is an expressive arts group.  Students meet weekly to use the arts to make friends, feel better about life, and learn how to make positive choices.

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Arts Over Anxiety

Coming this Winter!  brushes

The Seville Arts Project, located at First Baptist Church of Seville, will host a winter-time workshop to help others deal with anxiety.  It will be 6 weeks long. Email me for more information.

Margarita Tartakovsky M.S. explains “Art therapy can be valuable in navigating anxiety. It can become another healthy tool in our collection whether your anxiety is occasional or chronic. One big benefit of art therapy is its ability to calm the nervous system: When we’re focused on creating, our attention shifts away from worrisome ruminations.”

“When our attention has shifted, our nervous system can begin to regulate. And we can have more access to the rest of our brains, thoughts, emotions, empathy and compassion,” said Doreen Meister, MA, MFT, a mindfulness-based, expressive art and depth psychotherapist in Oakland, Calif. This lets us process more difficult experiences, she said.


In View of God’s Mercy

DSCN0956In view of God’s mercy…offer your bodies as living sacrifices…This is your spiritual act of worship.

What is your view of God’s mercy?  Has it come into view lately?  As week one of our wellness challenge tumbled into motion I didn’t pick up on the beginning of our verse.

What a tumbling week this was.  The tracking of our moods during the challenge is a great way to detect the pace with which we can make lasting change.  I wanted to jolt myself.  The word “sacrifice” was in the forefront of my mind.  I planned on starving and giving myself sore muscles.  That wasn’t what happened as the temperature plummeted. Instead, I reached for comforting tastes and a full belly.  This was the most difficult transition to a challenge.  I have written in the food log something that I knew I shouldn’t have eaten.  Things that aren’t God’s best fuel for my body, mind, or spirit.

Just last night the word “mercy” caught my eye and I began to really contemplate the mercy that God has given me.  When mercy comes into view it is life-changing. Who am I that I should even be utilized by a loving God?  I have done things and said things that have hurt the people I love.  It is not a pretty view to look at that and know that God has mercifully covered it with His perfect plan.  His perfect sovereignty.  His perfect forgiveness.

Now it is time to turn the page to week two of our challenge.

Do not conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

During week two we must increase the diligence of abstaining from the foods that are faux fuels.  I’d like to encourage you to turn away from any mindless eating you enjoy.  (Mine is Cracked Pepper Triscuits with Muenster Cheese.  Thankfully I conquered the addiction to them in September!)  When we eat just to watch television or chat with others; our minds are not on fueling the body.

Turn your focus instead to the renewing of your mind.  Give yourself time to try new recipes, create your workout schedule and interact with loved ones.  Place “In view of God’s mercy” at the beginning of this week’s verse also!  Keep in touch.

The Sense of Possibility

I love the sense of possibility.  There is an entire year stretched out in front of us.  There will be highlights and failures and game changing events that bring us closer to ourselves and each other.  2015 is ready to be filled with adventure and millions of tiny gifts to open.

Do you want to hold this new year tightly in your hands?  Do you want to let it unfold by holding it loosely?  The pastor at my church shared that planning is essential and Biblical.  God has a plan and He does reveal it.  What are some of the plans the Lord has for you this year?


As you make this a year of living authentically: Remember to Surrender.  Give the Lord, Jesus, your relationship with food.  Give him your schedule and plan work-outs with Him.  When you surrender the year you want in the flesh; God will give you a year in His Spirit.


DanceProject_10573939rtMeaningful change in heart, body, and mind takes time, but it all starts with one brave leap forward.  When you do, you say to yourself: I am bigger than the fear that’s holding me back, and I am ready to reach for more.

Remember to Surrender

The slogan for this week [WEEK ONE] of our 2015 Wellness Challenge is:

Remember to Surrender

This will be the act of giving up something that you want to keep.  This will especially difficult.  Surrthumbnail.aspxendering is an act that will help you get or do something else.  Surrendering will help you and those you love.

When you surrender foods and drinks that poorly fuel your body:

  • It honors God.
  • It honors your Friends.
  • It honors your Family.
  • It honors YOU!

Remember this week to SURRENDER the foods and drinks that may, in fact, be hurting you.  They may not seem like it at first; but we know deep inside ourselves that some emotional and physical damage is occurring.  You are important and valuable!  When you’re tempted to sneak a sweet treat ~ stop.  Ask yourself if it is the best fuel for your physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual health?  God will show you a healthy way to fuel yourself.

Picking a Motivator

Looking at the word ‘motivate,’ you discover it is rooted in ‘motive.’  Motivate means that there is a motive which incites, impels, moves, prompts, and provokes you to act.

Your motivator should be a friend who “stirs up the gift of God” in you. [2 Timothy 1:6]  If you select someone who will fan the flame in you ~ this journey to wellness will be a trip to celebrate.  You have chosen to be challenged.  You have chosen to change something about your life.  Perhaps you have chosen to change many things about your life.  Pay close attention to the person you choose for motivation.

As you are exercising today please consider the things that may have been motivators for you in the past.

  • Are you motivated by tasks?  Does it excite you to load up your “to-do” list and check off items throughout the day?
  • Is your spirit portfolio driven?  Do your responsibilities energize you?  Do you like being given requests from leadership?
  • Do you work diligently in an effort for approval or avoidance of criticism?
  • Are you self-motivated?  Is it a joy for you to imagine projects from a completed state?

Once you’ve considered your past motivators ~ you’re on your way to discovering what it is going to take for you to enjoy the 2015 Wellness Challenge.  Our God has given you the right to enjoy peace and joy with Him in every moment you need it.

Romans 12:1The Message (MSG)

Place Your Life Before God

12 1-2 So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Because this is a wellness challenge; do not underestimate how challenging it will be.  Do not go this alone.  Do not isolate yourself.  Select an accountability partner/motivator who will truly help you fulfill this challenge through personal, emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual victories.

Forget the former things, do not dwell on the past.  See, I, the Lord, am doing a new thing.  Isaiah 43:18-19