Why Worry?

Why Worry?I’ve spent a good amount of my time on Earth fretting.  A defense developed in childhood, worry was my talisman, my rabbit’s foot. I believed it kept me safe. Delving into my spiritual yearning has brought me to a place of openness and questioning.
What if life happens just the way it’s supposed too?
What if everything appears exactly when we need it?
What if inside each problem is a lesson that is a gift to help us navigate through life?
What if following our heart is following God’s guidance?
What if being open to how are longings are realized, leaves God the space to out dream us?
I’ve learned when I’m trusting, and being myself as fully as possible, everything in my life reflects this by falling into place easily, often miraculously.
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As usual, the characters in this illustration are based on real children. I got to know Riley and her brother Nick on my walks through our neighborhood with my dog.

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The Sheltie in the art is my nephew Jeff’s puppy, Jake. His ears make him look like he’s ready to take flight.

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Text and images © Sue Shanahan. All rights reserved. www.sueshanahan.com

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Don’t Let Go of the Glow

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I have a young friend, Andrea, who inspires the heck out of me. One day she told me how happy she was with the direction her life had been going. She said, “Things are going so good, I don’t want to let go of the glow.” Don’t let go of the glow. I really liked that. It’s so easy to let negativity creep in and take over. That’s why it’s important to watch our thoughts and steer them in the direction of gratitude when they begin to get off course.

I’ve learned that I absorb the message of whatever I illustrate  so I promptly rustled up a couple of models (Andrea’s son Adrian being one of them) and got this drawing down on paper. The next week when Andrea mentioned she was intent on “keeping the glow going,” I thought, “oh no, get me some paper. Here we go again.”

*By the way, I am looking for a little asian girl, around age four, (my model in the above art is now too old) to base the “Keep the Glow Going” illustration on. I see her walking along a path carrying a paper lantern. That image has lived in my mind’s eye since I first wrote this post a couple of years ago. If you know of a little one that fits my description, please get in touch with me at sue@sueshanahan.com

Paper Lantern

 

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Text and images © Sue Shanahan. All rights reserved. www.sueshanahan.com

Let Freedom Ring for All

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“America did not invent human rights.  Human rights invented America.” – Jimmy Carter

When the founders of our nation landed on the shores of Cape Cod, it was with the pursuit of religious freedom. All the other truths we’ve fought for since that time, stemmed from this same quest. The belief that no one has the right to define God or how we worship, has opened the door for an all-inclusive loving God to walk through. With no religious dogma, no one is excluded. We are free to be who we are.  In 1955, Rosa Parks claimed that freedom when she refused to move to the back of the bus and began the Civil Rights movement. Eunice Shriver was certain of it when she fought for the rights of people with intellectual disabilities and helped form the Special Olympics.  In June 2015 gay couples felt it when the Supreme Court legalized same sex-marriage across the country, giving them the identical federal rights as heterosexual couples. It doesn’t matter what we look like, if we are handicapped, or who we love, we are all welcomed into the fold. The Creator delights in us exactly as we are. And why shouldn’t he? We are his handiwork.

I am deeply grateful to be born in the land of liberty. Our freedom is sacred and worth defending. July 4th is a day to celebrate this gift and remember all who have fought and died for it. As fireworks light up the sky, we watch with hands over our hearts, in awe of our servicemen and women. Without them our independence would not exist.

“The American dream is not that every man must be level with every other man. The American dream is that every man must be free to become whatever God intends he should become.” – Ronald Reagan

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Text and images © Sue Shanahan. All rights reserved. www.sueshanahan.com