The Jerusalem Donkey

Last summer we took our 13-year-old grandson, Heston, on a trip to Kentucky. We stayed on a horse farm, in an old train depot turned VRBO. Each time we drove up and parked our car, there was a fenced area right beside us where two donkeys lived.

Every day when we went outside, they greeted us and we enjoyed giving them carrots and leftovers! One day, I pulled out my art supplies, which I always have handy, sat at the kitchen table with Heston, and we both sketched our versions of the donkey. 

 I love his vision and his sketch in black watercolor. I did a color version. 

And oh, by the way, it was a great trip!!


As we are celebrating Palm Sunday, those donkey sketches came to my mind. As I think about that special Donkey that Jesus rode, I did a little research about them. 

The donkey is a sign of meekness. Stubbornness, loyalty, and both stupidity and intelligence are common words to describe them. Donkeys were portrayed in Biblical works as symbols of service, suffering, peace, and humility. Jesus led his followers into the city of Jerusalem riding on the back of a small, common donkey on Palm Sunday.

The “Jerusalem Donkey” term comes from a legend. After he brought Jesus into Jerusalem, the donkey was troubled because he knew what Jesus was about to go through with his trial, suffering, and death on the cross. 

He so loved his gentle master that he later followed him to Calvary. Grief-stricken by the sight of Jesus on the cross, the donkey turned away but couldn’t leave. God saw this and caused the shadow of the cross to fall across the little donkey’s back and he has carried the sign of the cross ever since as a symbol of God’s love. 

All kinds of donkeys, regardless of the breed, have a cross marking on their backs. Although it may be obscure, shave a donkey down and you’ll definitely see it.

The Legend of the Donkey's Cross - Courageous Christian Father

The triumphal entry – Jesus’ famous ride on this lowly animal reveals much about Christ’s character and purpose.  A king would have ridden a horse when he was bent on war and ridden a donkey to symbolize his arrival in peace. Jesus’ entry to Jerusalem would have thus symbolized his entry as the Prince of Peace, not as a war-waging king. It fulfilled a prophecy spoken 500 years before referred to by Matthew as he recalled Zechariah 9:9. “Exult greatly, O daughter Zion! Shout for joy, O daughter Jerusalem! Behold: your king is coming to you, a just savior is he, Humble, and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”

The cross on a donkey can serve as a reminder of both Jesus’ sacrifice and the caring role the animal played in the events leading up to his death.

Here is a FREE coloring sheet for your kiddos as you talk with them about the donkey that carried our Lord and savior into town all those years ago. 

October Breast Cancer Awareness

October Breast Cancer awareness

October is the designated month and time to honor breast cancer survivors. It is the month to remember those who have lost their battle with Breast Cancer. It is the month to support the progress being made to defeat breast cancer.

In keeping with this theme,  I was thinking of a good way to get involved this year. This verse came to my mind as  I picked up my pen and paper to start putting down my thoughts.  ” Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

 I began to sketch my vision on paper, one face at a time.  I would like to invite you to help me finish the painting.  

If you know a breast cancer survivor, simply write down her name on my   Instagram or  Facebook or comment here on the blog.  If you have a friend or family member that you have lost with breast cancer, write down her name. If you know of someone living with breast cancer right now or is going through treatment, write down her name.  As names are gathered, each one will be prayed for and then added to the Joshua 1:9  painting.  Once all of the names have been collected and the painting is finished at the end of the month, I will share it once more, finished.  At that point, it will be donated to a local Oncologist`s office in honor of my sweet friend in her 4th year, battling breast cancer. 

My desire is that this painting process will inspire, bring HOPE and encouragement to those who are struggling in their own journey of cancer. 

Jeremiah 29: 11 “ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

In the painting, I have lots of faces in the background that will be faded as it is near completion but still seen. They represent the 3.8 million breast cancer survivors in the US, including women still being treated as well as those who have completed treatment. They also are in memory of the 685,000 worldwide who have lost their battle against this disease. this year.  The girl in the front represents nearly 281,550 new cases of breast cancer that will be diagnosed this year.

The beginning, from thought to paper
Watercolor and details are added and I begin to add names.



Look us up on facebook  and instagram and add the names of those special ladies.  Let’s fill the painting with names of brave women who have a connection with breast cancer.  Tag a friend, to let them know they are being prayed for and will be a part of the bigger picture here that we are creating together.

It is a privilege to be able to be a very small part of bringing awareness to Breast Cancer this month, to honor ladies, and also to remember ladies who have fought a good fight. This is for them all.

Check out our note cards and prints that are available 

Thank you in advance for your help. Spread the word and check back next week to see the update and progress of the Joshua 1:9 Girls

Have a great new week,





Modern day warriors

12 Jun 2021 Uncategorized

As I  researched and wrote down stories of strong women in the Bible during my recent Lent devotions,  I wanted those women to cause us to reflect on women around us with these same characteristics. It has been so fun for me to think of these modern-day warriors and to share just a snippet of their story with you.

HUMILITY – When I think of someone who reflects the character essence of “humility”,  I think of my sweet friend, Kristi. She is quiet and not one to draw any attention to herself, but she has a story of healing and humility.

She is a survivor of breast cancer, followed by years of desiring to have a second child, all woven together through her story of adoption.

As I listened to her give her testimony in my  Community Bible Study several years ago, I could see how God was using her and His gift of humility to her, for Him.

Her story continues as He did indeed add that second baby to her family. Today, her daughters are 19 and 14 and are both a huge part of her story and God`s faithfulness to her.

FAITH –  When I think of someone who reflects the character essence of “faith”, I think of my sweet friend, Megan, and her story of faith.

She was diagnosed with cervical cancer while she was pregnant with her precious baby boy. She fought hard to keep him safe and showed tremendous faith along her journey.

She just recently wrote this on the day of Houston`s baptism at church.

“From the depths of despair when we were told to abort my baby, then, that he would be preterm and not survive to the miracle of Houston`s full-term birth and now, 8 years later, his new birth in Christ God writes beautiful stories”. Megan


BRAVERY –  When I think of someone who reflects the character essence of “bravery”,  I think of my sweet friend, Julie, and her daughter, Julianne. Julie was diagnosed with aggressive leukemia, CML, May 2016.

After many months of tests and treatments, and an extended stay at MD Anderson, the search began for the perfect match for Julie to have a stem cell transplant. When Julianne found out that she was a match for her mother, she bravely volunteered to donate her stem cells to give Julie the opportunity to become a CML survivor.

On September 6, 2016, Julianne`s stem cells were harvested to infuse to Julie. Julie`s bravery was exhibited daily as she walked her cancer battle.

Today, she always points her story toward the Lord, praising Him that she is a  CML survivor.


STRENGTH – When I think of someone who reflects the character essence of “strength”, I think of my sweet friend, Greta. March 19, 2009, when her daughter was in 3rd grade and her twins were in kindergarten, in an instant, she lost her husband, Chris, in the middle of the night.

All of a sudden she was left being a widow and a single mother. Through the years that followed, she showed such strength as she took on this new role and was mother and daddy to her three children. She claims any strength seen in her story is testimony to God hearing her cry out in her weakness, physical, emotional, spiritual, all of her weaknesses.

Today, her children are growing up and starting to leave home, one by one. She has displayed much strength and courage over the years and praises Him for His faithfulness. She shines so brightly for Him in her story of courage and strength.


PATIENCE – When I think of someone who reflects the character essence of “patience”, I think of my sweet friend, Rita.

She and her husband had a busy life with their three children when they felt called to be foster parents. Rita said it was a family decision because it was a life-changing decision for each of them. They were all on board and they made steps to make their dream a reality.

First a precious little girl, then came a sweet little boy. After a period of time, the family fell in love with and adopted both of these children.

Rita started full-time mothering for these two little ones. Many medical visits and help with daily needs, all along keeping up with homework, sports, graduations, and college decisions for the older ones.

I have loved watching how God has woven His story through hers and has showered her with an abundance of patience for her to do life with her husband and these 5 precious children.


COURAGE – When I think of someone in my life who reflects “courage”, I think of my sweet friend, Emily. In February 2017, she got the call that would change her life. “it`s cancer. Breast cancer”, the voice on the phone said.

She is now in this battle for the second time in three years.

Radiation, surgeries, chemo, nausea, loss of appetite are all scars from this battle called cancer.

She shows exceptional courage as she bravely fights this battle and walks this hard journey, always pointing others to the Lord through her story.  She walks with grace, never complaining.  “Trusting is all part of His perfect timing,” she says.

This year is especially hard and exciting at the same time. Hard, as she suffers the side effects of the latest treatment.  It is exciting as her daughter just graduated from Belmont and they have just celebrated the marriage of her son, Jason, and Lauren last month. 


HOPE – When I think of someone who reflects the character of “hope”, my sweet friend, Morgan, comes to my mind. When the unimaginable happened and her twin girl went to their heavenly home, just 17 months apart, I watched as Morgan chose to live each day with the hope she has in the Lord. The hope that she will see her girls again one day, and the hope that their earthly bodies are now healed with our Lord in heaven and get are in no pain.

In the midst of her grief, she so beautifully writes her thoughts and reflections, raw and vulnerable, for others to see and to be encouraged by. Her story is full of HOPE as she shares His story woven together through hers.

This Mother`s Day is the first for Morgan with both of her girls gone. The sun rose as it does every day and life goes on for most of us, But for Morgan, her life has changed forever and this day is anything but ordinary. It is hard. The HOPE that she has in our Lord, allowed her to speak out in her grief, to encourage others who are at a hard place too. Check out  and be inspired by this precious mother as she allows her circumstances to point others to Him through her story and her prayer. 

“Breathe it in because He loves you and because He is going to mess this up in spite of how it feels. He knows what He is doing, at all times, in all things, no matter what” Morgan Cheek


I hope you will continue to pray for each of these ladies with me. They have had hard seasons on their life journeys and in the midst of the hard, they gave Him the glory and continue to do so. 

How thankful we are to know the end to each of our stories

“When we all get to heaven what a day of rejoicing that will be when we all see Jesus, we`ll sing and shout the victory!”

I love you girls!!

Love, Jane

Faces of Grace: Rahab

The Essence of Rahab 

For 40 long and rigorous years, Moses led the Israelites through the wilderness. God delivered them from Egypt, helped them cross the Red Sea on dry ground, and defeated the enemies who tried to thwart their path to Canaan.

Around 1400 B.C., the Israelites were about to enter the land promised to them by God. God appointed Joshua as the new leader of Israel. Before the Israelites entered Canaan, Joshua sent two spies to the land just west of the Jordan River,  telling them to pay special attention to the formidable city of Jericho.

The spies soon reached Jericho, a bustling, fortified city strategically situated in the plains of the Jordan valley. They blended in with the busy pedestrians outside the great city walls. Jericho’s massive fortifications were visibly impressive. The spies were to take mental notes of the city’s layout and fortifications. They soon realized that these man-made barriers would never be breached or destroyed unless God miraculously intervened for the Israelites.

The incredible events that followed includes an encouraging lesson involving a woman who had lived an ungodly life. Rahab, the harlot, helped save the lives of the Israelite spies, which in turn set Israel on the path to conquering Jericho and moving into the Promised Land.

The whole city received news about the miraculous events and conquests of the wandering nation of Israel, yet Rahab was the only resident of Jericho who was resolved to fear and obey Israel’s God. Although the Canaanites had many gods, she had enough understanding to realize that the God of Israel was no ordinary Canaanite deity. Rahab possessed the wisdom and revelation of a great apostle. She spoke with passion and intelligence to the guards who came looking for spies.

When the king of Jericho heard that spies from Israel had entered his city, he immediately sent soldiers to Rahab’s house. Rahab received a warning that the king’s men were coming to investigate her and her two guests. Understanding the gravity of the situation, Rahab hid the spies under the drying flax on her rooftop. (To break down and separate the fibers, the flax was soaked in stagnant water, then laid out to dry. Imagine the smell, the sogginess of the drying flax). No one would be looking for spies under such a nasty wet blanket.

She made a covenant with the spies that she would help them to safety and in return, they would ensure that she and her family would be spared. She used a scarlet cord to lower the men out the window. The plan was for her to leave it hanging there as a signal to the Israelite army to save that one house and its residents.

“Yes, the men came to me” (Joshua 2:4), she admitted to the King’s men. She spun a tale about not knowing where they’d come from or where they’d gone at dusk when it was time to close the city gate.

God gave Jericho into Israel’s hands. The walls were flattened. Rahab’s home stood directly on top of the wall but it was left standing, as had been previously agreed.

Rahab and her family were delivered. They made their home with Israel from that day on.

The safety of Rahab’s home and family stood on the promises of God and her faith in Him.

The Hope of Faith – Today

Rahab is one of two women named in Hebrews 11 that served as examples of godly faith. The other is Abraham’s wife, Sarah. She exemplified Christian values and qualities. But Rahab?

Why would God include the name of a harlot as one of His faithful saints?

How could a Canaanite prostitute know about the one true God?

Jesus would later say to Peter, “This was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven” (Matthew 16:17).

God had shown Rahab who He was, and she had embraced that truth. He showed His great mercy and power through human weaknesses. Out of Rahab’s weakness, she was made strong in FAITH—through the power of God.

“By FAITH the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace” (Hebrews 11:31).

In addition to her infamous profession, Rahab processed flax. The flax was dried on her rooftop and made into linen.

For being faithful, God gave her the lives of her family. A husband and a home, a heritage, a fortune, and a future.

Rahab married Salmon, the son of Judah’s tribal leader. From this marriage would come their son Boaz, a faithful man of God. Boaz would marry Ruth and their son Obed would be the father of Jesse, the father of King David. From David would descend the Savior of all mankind, Jesus Christ.

A former prostitute of Canaan had become what every Israelite woman hoped to be—a mother in the line of the Messiah.

A transformed life, like that experienced by Rahab, is there for you if you follow the apostle Peter’s instruction: “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”  Acts 2:38

Thought reflections

It took courage for Rahab to overcome her past. It took courage for her to assume the risk.  It took courage for her to change the course of her life.

If a common harlot of Canaan could become an uncommon saint of faith and courage and receive the privilege of motherhood in the line of Jesus Christ, then surely nothing is impossible with God

Jesus said, ‘With God all things are possible’ Matthew 19:26

This is far more than the power of positive thinking. It is the power of God that makes what seems impossible possible. Nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37).

 In what ways are you able to show your faith by what you do?

We can leave behind our past and walk forward in grace with God.

When you think of Rahab, does her story remind you of anyone in your world? Someone who needs to be reminded that they are loved by God no matter their story?

Always be ready to assure them of God’s abundant love, mercy, and grace.

“If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us” (John 1:4:15-16).

Rahab’s amazing story of faith is a lesson for us all. God has a plan for all of us. Our job is simply to be a willing vessel.


Dear Lord, thank You for Rahab and her story of faith. Help us to remember that You can use the most unlikely servants to further Your Kingdom. We are weak, fearful, and feel unworthy with many excuses. Thank you for seeing what we can be and not just what we are. Give us the strength to live each day for You and please, Lord, give us opportunities to share Your love with others.

Faces of Grace: Esther

The Essence of Esther

Esther was an orphan, raised by her cousin, Mordechai.

After the Babylonian exile, many of the Jewish people were scattered throughout Persia. They were eventually granted freedom to return to their homeland. Many stayed in exile, as Mordecai and Esther did, rather than return to war-torn Jerusalem.

The Persian King, King Ahasuerus, was displeased with his wife and sought her replacement. He made a decree that all eligible women come to the palace so he could choose a new queen. His servant, Hegai,  was put in charge of choosing the most exquisite woman in the land.

Esther was only 14 years old, but she possessed remarkable beauty as well as charm.  She was one of many chosen by Hegai to go to the palace where she soon became a favorite. Her every need was supplied, but she had a secret that no one knew.

She was a Jew.

Mordechai had warned her not to tell anyone because many people in Persia despised the Jews. If they knew she was a Jew, it could compromise her chances of becoming the new Queen.

She didn’t say a word to anyone.

Esther spent her days doing as Hegai instructed her in order to please the King.  When her name was finally called, she was dressed in the finest linen clothes and was adorned with many jewels. Her hair and makeup were flawless.  She looked exquisite as she walked through the doors to the King’s chambers.

The King was immediately enamored by her. He loved her more than any of the others. Her kindness sparkled in her eyes as she radiated such beauty.

The King chose her to be his queen and placed the crown upon her head. Esther was chosen to be the queen, but her story is far more than just sitting among gold and riches. Esther helped thwart a plan to assassinate the king and helped save the lives of many Jewish people.

The King’s adviser, Haman, was plotting aloud, to have the Jews killed. Mordecai learned of this and sent Esther a message, telling her to go to the King and beg for mercy on behalf of her people. Esther knew the risk. If anyone approached the King without an invitation, they could possibly be killed, but if the king extended his scepter, the person’s life would be spared.  Mordecai was asking her to risk her life to save the Jews.

Esther, Mordechai, and the Jewish people fasted and prayed before she went before the King.

The king held out his scepter after he heard her speak and granted Esther’s request to spare the Jewish people.  The words Mordecai had spoken to her, were true.

“Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.” Esther 4:14

The HOPE of COURAGE today

Esther’s story reminds us that God can bring about new life, redemption, and freedom for you, even when it seems an impossible feat.

She was authentic and favored by all. She was quiet and listened intently to Hegai as he gave her advice. You can glean inspiration from her strength, wisdom, and dignity as she faced her fears and boldly stood before the throne of God.

God chose an orphan Jewish girl to become a queen of Persia, to fulfill His purpose for her life, and to save the lives of the Jewish people in exile.    What makes you think that God cannot do something equally as awesome for you in your life?

“Behold, I am about to do something new, even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed I will make a way in the wilderness and streams in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19


Esther was an orphan Jew. She was young. She was not rich and yet she became Queen of Persia and saved the lives of the Jewish people, fulfilling God’s purpose for her.

What is God using you to do in the lives of those around you?

Neither Esther nor Mordecai made any rash decisions, nor did they have expectations for instant fixes. Plans were made slowly and quietly. Esther asked her people to fast for her, and she waited for the right time.

Patience is a difficult lesson to learn when we live in an instant world. Yet, God will work in His time, not ours. If we allow Him to work at His pace, we will see amazing things happen.

Is there something in your life that you have been praying about for a long time? Do you sometimes feel like He doesn’t hear you?

Even when you think He is not listening, He is. Even when you think God doesn’t care, He does. Even if you have no words left and you think, “what is the point?”, there is a point. Some of the greatest times are spent with God in silence.  Sometimes it is not about the answers but just being with Him. Sometimes He just needs you to be still and be with Him. Time spent in prayer is never wasted.

“The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.”  Exodus 14:14

Be like Esther, bold and courageous enough to stand for the truth. If God has put you in a position, allow Him to work at His pace and you will see amazing things happen. Never be afraid to heed that inner voice.

He loves you as you are, and He has great purposes for you no matter where you are at in your life.


Lord, help me to be courageous, relying on Your power instead of trying to do it on my own. When I am afraid, remind me how You are at work on my behalf at that very moment. I am thankful that I can be brave and courageous because of Your promises and great love for me.

Thank you for being with us today as we look into the life of Esther and see how she walked her faith journey.

Jane Lazenby Art at Home for Adults

With the last two weeks of digital kids art coloring pages done,  I wanted to share an activity for adults to work on. Do you have a bit of free time on your hands at the end of the day when your work is done and the children are in bed? Do you want something just for fun that doesn’t take much thinking?

Well, here it is. The solution to your problem. I created this “coloring sheet” for those who wanted a little more detail in their sheets.  It may take you a little bit of time but you don’t have to finish it in one sitting!!  You can do a little bit each day. You can use thin tip markers for the best results.


“He makes beauty from broken” is the title of this piece.  We are living in a time that we are not familiar with. Life, as we have known it, is gone for right now, but this too will pass.  We will be stronger than before. We have the hope that He is in charge and nothing takes Him by surprise. His stories never end in ashes.

As you are working on this art page, it is my prayer that it will give you time to meditate on His words and be encouraged.


“When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I” Psalm 61:2

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you”  Isaiah 43:2


“Encourage one another and build each other up” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

“Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you” 1 Peter 5:7



“Love is patient.  Love is kind. It does not envy.  It does not boast. It is not proud. It does not dishonor others. It is not self-seeking. It is not easily angered. It keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects. Always trusts. Always hopes. Always perseveres. ” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7


You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, the Lord Himself is the Rock eternal. Isaiah 26:3-4


“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit”  Romans 15:13


“Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you” 1 Peter 5:7


“When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness” Proverbs 31:26


for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.” Psalm 107:9

FAITHFULNESS  “Be strong. Do not allow anyone to change your mind. Always do your work well for the Lord. Whatever you do for Him will not be wasted.” 1 Corinthians 15:58

SELF CONTROLbecause you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James1:3-4

When you finish this paper, I would love to see you post it on Instagram or Facebook and tag me! Lets spread joy, hope and love one person at a time.

Thank you for following me and taking the time to download the art page. Enjoy. Stay safe.


A great follow-up to this coloring sheet in your life might be these scripture cards on our Etsy store. They also make great framed pictures after you memorize the scriptures on the back. And right now–these have free shipping!

“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls” Picasso

“Art is the only way to run away without leaving home”

“A master artist is a beginner who kept beginning”

Kids Coloring Sheets

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