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  • Writer's pictureJen Henry

Beginning With A Blank Canvas (Part 5)

Updated: Jun 26, 2023

Hello and welcome back :) I am so happy and blessed to connect once again! We have been in a week of celebration as my husband crossed a milestone birthday. He sure makes growing older look good! We are no spring chickens anymore, but with that comes a salt and peppering, which brings about a wonderful seasoning to the top of our heads, and our lives in general. I used to get horrified when I reached the birthday with a "9" behind it, because I knew I had one more year in that decade, but now I have changed my mind frame to embrace life and what comes with it. I want to age as gracefully as I can. That's a nice way of saying, "I'm going down fighten" and enjoying the journey. There are perks that come with growing older, as we take life one step at a time and learn from our past. I am going to taste and see all that God has for me. I hope you will join me in doing the same!

Instead of focusing on what is in the rear view mirror as I drive down the restaurant row of life, I am now focusing on what is new and delightful ahead of me. There is so much to savor as we move through life. Are you getting hungry yet?!

The celebration started last Thursday as we had some friends over for a pre-birthday dinner. The store bought pizza turned out just so so and much too crispy as I left it in the oven a little too long. As for the company, it was awesome. Obviously my attention was more on the social aspect and less on the oven. A few days later we made up for the less than authentic pizza we ate, and continued the Italian birthday theme. We hopped on the Coaster train and took it down into San Diego to explore the flavors of Little Italy. I took the week before to gather suggestions from friends on where we should eat while we we were there. If you haven't been, I highly suggest it. Traveling on the coaster to get there only added to the fun! The destination was at least a mile away from our final train stop, but at least we were able to burn off a few calories before stacking them back on again. It is amazing how much there is to do and see in our own neck of the woods if you just step out your front door. If you are willing to extend your travels further, it is amazing what you can find in just your state alone. As we walked around, there were so many places to choose from, but we had fun window salivating as we passed by. It could have been so easy to veer off and change our minds, because everything looked so enticing. I am happy to say we stuck to the plan and reached our first destination called Barbusa. We ordered a drink and a yummy appetizer, enjoyed the ambiance, then proceeded to our dinner reservations at RoVino down the street. Both were yummy and are calling our name for the future. After a few hours of tasting and seeing a small bit of what Little Italy has to offer, we walked off a few of the many calories we consumed, and headed back home on the train.

The next day we attended a fundraising event my very close friend Ingrid put on at a ranch, to raise medical funds for two sweet horses, who lost their owner to alcoholism. To keep with the Italian theme, it was a lasagna dinner that began with a painting party inside a really cool barn on the ranch. Ingrid did an outstanding job putting the event together and we all left there with our own original canvas paintings we created. For those of you reading this who are not born with artistic talents running through your veins, you can only imagine how intimidating it was to look at a blank black canvas on an easel sitting in front of our seats. The feeling of intimidation began to overshadow the excitement, as we peered up to see the beautiful sample painting of the butterfly on a flower, the instructor Erin had already painted for us to recreate. My friends Stefanie, Chris, Chito, Ingrid, Mike my hubby, and myself were all overwhelmed with the thought of trying to create anything that remotely looked like the sample painting that was displayed at the front of the class. I must admit, I am a bit stiff with fear and can feel the intimidation I was feeling, before I started to dip my dry brush into the water, then dabbing the paint brush into the white paint, before applying my first stroke onto the blank black canvas.

This reminds me of some of the similar concepts of what Pastor Craig referenced in Part 5 of The Power Of Change series (TPOC) Bad choices start one step at a time. You don't reach those "Oh ___ Moments" just by making one bad choice or taking one wrong move, it is usually a series of bad choices that get you to those unthinkable times. It's the same with good choices and healthy habits, they are implemented one step at a time as well.

When we Confess our sins, ask Jesus to dwell within us, and submit to the Lord allowing Him to forgive and guide us, it is as if we are starting our lives with a blank canvas. His grace takes over and is sufficient if we accept Him into our lives. We have the opportunity to have a new beginning that can lead to beauty if we just allow him to apply His brush strokes to our lives.

As we continued to progress in our creating,

As you can see each one of our paintings are a little different because we are unique individuals. We all have our own journeys we are on and experiences we have gone through. We all are His masterpieces and He has carved out a beautiful plan if we just let Him work in our lives. Too often we get in the way and take ourselves down the wrong path by bad choices or habits. Pastor Craig explains more in-depth how to be proactive in our decisions and how we can set ourselves up for transformational change that leads to success.

As I am writing this post, this scripture comes to mind:

Isaiah 64:8 But now, Lord, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter, And all of us are the work of Your hand.

One of the many impactful statements Pastor Craig said to remember is, "You can not defeat what you can not define!"

It's easier to see our blind spots, when we are willing to take off the blinders-JH

(Chris found Charlie's sweet spot :)

As you go through the series you will see it is important to find your Spiritual Who, Why, What, and What Not, so far. Today can be your day, if you pray and call upon Jesus for help as you start the process of change. A great place to begin is by watching Video 1 in Pastor Craig's series, The Power Of Change.

Today I am posting the next sermon in The Power of Change called:

Part 5 You Don't Win By Trying (TPOC) Series

If you are beginning the series you can start here:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

As you begin your week, set yourself up for success. Remove the 5 Common Cues in your life that are triggers: Places, Time, Moods, Movements, and People. You will learn more about this in Part 4 of Breaking Bad Habits (Taken from Part 4)

Thank you again for spending your valuable time with me. I keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers. You mean so much to me and I am so excited to walk this road together. I would love to hear about where you are on your journey and what you are experiencing in your life as you choose to step out in faith and out of your comfort zone. Keep your eye on the prize and where you want to be in your life. You will get there, as you put one step in front of the other :)

If you would like to know more about who I am and my vision for

you can click on the "About" section to learn more. As you choose to spend some of your valuable time on this site. I would like to invite you to click on "BLOG" to see all of my posts, as only a few are shown on the front page. If you view this on your cell, you can click on the brown square menu button at the top of the HOMEPAGE or you can use the arrows below under the most recent posts.

If you are encouraged by what you see, I invite you to "SUBSCRIBE" to this Blog (if you have not already done so) and you will receive notification via email when I publish a new post. I usually try to do this on Mondays :) I would love to hear how your are doing on your journey, so please feel free to add any comments in the Comments Section.

You are one step closer to your goal. Keep up the great work!

Be well and God bless you all,


I am including the websites to the restaurants we visited in Littles Italy in San Diego, Ca. They are so yum :-}


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