Exodus Exhibition Fall 2018

Materials: String and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Exodus 19:4
“You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.”
Through the cross, God has carried us on eagles’ wings, away from sin and death, and into the new life of his kingdom.
Material: Sand, string, yarn, beads, dried flowers and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Exodus 3:1-8
Moses attempts to run from his past by hiding in the wilderness, where he encounters the burning bush. It is there that God tells Moses He will lead the Israelites out of Egypt, and Moses changes his perspective, realizing that all of his past experiences prepared him for this opportunity.

I believe the burning bush symbolizes God’s consuming love that cleanses and purifies also represents mercy. The consuming fire engulfs the bush, but the bush is not consumed. The judgment is brought, but mercy is shown. Everything that God does is meaningful, significant, and purposeful down to the very last detail. Every detail in the Holy Scriptures is there by design. We are all apart of the Body of Christ and we all suffer at some point in our lives. When one suffers we are all suffering. To me the burning bush represents the brutal and painful processes we must endure to get to through the fire.

But we are cleansed and purified once we get through it. The things we all struggle with can consume us if we choose not to turn to God for help. The burning bush shows the power of God but it also shows his grace. God will have assignments for us just like he did for Moses. God will prepare us, position us and protect us as we carry out what we have been called to do. But you have to get off the bench and take the step. God cannot do it for us we have to listen and take the step. The challenges we face can be either angels or giants, but that they’re both working for God’s purpose.
“Faithful Quest”
Material: Sand, string, yarn, beads, dried flowers and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Exodus 14:21-22
Moses and hundreds of thousand Israelites were going to a promised land, a land flowing with milk and honey. And then they came to the Red Sea, a body of water that could not be crossed. The people stood still in their tracks. I have found myself in this same situation many times while trying to accomplish my dreams or just trying to survive and suddenly a great obstacle stands in our way. It is not as easy as we hoped it would be in fact the journey seems impossible. God tells us to go forward in the face of what seems to be impossible obstacles, even when it seems we will drown in the sea that stands before us.
God asks us to go forward because He can see something we cannot see. When we finally stop dragging our feet and open our ears we can hear what God is asking us to do. God wants us to continue with the journey, unforeseen miracles wait for us. God knows that when we take the initiative in the face of certain death, He will part the seas that stand before us. The sea that stands in our way does not part until we begin walking toward it. This is trust in the face of death. If we feel that we are going to part the seas ourselves, we will find it to be impossible. Even in the darkest moments, Jesus is your light and your salvation. Fear nothing!
Materials: String, yarn, paper towels and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Exodus 3:7-8
Abraham trusted God to lead him and the people of God to a land flowing of milk and honey. The land of promise was symbolic of Heaven. I believe in the present day we search for a place to plant our roots and have that feeling that it will be everlasting. But I also believe that our hearts long for something beyond the land itself. God invites us to experience our everlasting peace and rest right now through simple faith in God’s love. The Promised Land really represents all that salvation holds for us – it is through our inheritance in Jesus Christ.
Materials: Sand, string, yarn and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Exodus 12:21-24
God fights on our behalf just as he did for the Israelites. Sometimes the battle is greater than you expect only because the victory He intends is also going to be greater than you expect! God is with us just like He was with Israel in Egypt. The greater the assignment the greater the assistance you will receive from God by fully trusting. The passover taught us a major truth: the way better the world is to begin with our own families. Children are our future. The home is where we first form our identities and discover our values. I was raised in a Christian home and my mom worked for the church for many years. My mom and dad have been a huge spiritual influence in my life since I can remember. My parents put in a valiant effort to teach my 3 brothers and me about the Bible, bring us to church, and teach us to serve. And they continue to live and love by example worshiping and serving God, giving him thanks and praise. Just as their parents did and their parents parents and as I am passing down to my son. My mom has always been really helpful putting things in perspective and I appreciate her insight on this journey of faith. The holy spirit gave me this insight when talking with my mom about the morning after the Passover with a man and his son peeking around a door that’s cracked open. They saw the light. They had been passed over because they believed and obeyed.
Materials: Sand and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Joshua 4:1-7
God performed a miracle that mirrored the miracle of the Exodus from Egypt. God rolled back the waters of the Jordan River, just as He had done with the Red Sea. God spoke to Joshua with very specific instructions as they crossed the dry river bed with the Arc of the Covenant. Twelve men carried heavy stones to their shoulders from Jordan’s river bed and then piled them together where they camped, by God’s command. They were stacked there as a sign, an unmistakable marker at the very place where God had demonstrated His power to overcome any obstacle to His will. Joshua told Israel that the stones would serve as a reminder that all the people of the earth may know that Gods hand is mighty. This memorial speaks to us and all generations. It’s our responsibility to pass on what God has done for us. This is all about God and His glory. Stepping into unknown waters and believing in what you cannot see, is called Faith. Not only does He want us to have faith, but God invites us to have a relationship with him.
“Be the Light”
Materials: Plaster, paper towels, corn husks and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
Genesis 1:14-18
The sun is my son, the moon is my mother and the star is my niece for the face in each light God created. We are all meant to reflect gods light and be the light of the world! I wanted to include my family to represent the living generations carrying out gods will. Plus it was a blast doing the plaster masks together! Make time for people you do life with…Relationships are everything!
“Sacrificial Love”
Materials: String, sand, cedar wood shavings and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2018
“Come and see what God has done…for mankind!”
Psalm 66:5
The things that I have gone through in life, I feel I have stood at the foot of the cross. I have wandered lost in the wilderness for 39 years. I’m still trying to find my way. March of 2017 I checked myself into rehab for my alcoholism. I experienced such despair and loss of hope as I really felt the devil was never letting go of me. During those 23 days in rehab, I began surrendering and giving it all to God. I had heard, “Let Go and Let God” many times in my life, but for some reason this time it resonated throughout every fiber of my being. I heard God calling me by name, telling me to pick up my cross and follow Jesus. It truly was a pivotal point in my walk of faith. I heard the Holy Spirit’s invitation and I wanted to know more. While painting this piece and reflecting on the words of the Bible, I am finally realizing that the way out of the wilderness is through FAITH in Jesus Christ. I want to know him, I want to follow him, and lay my life down in front of the cross. Most importantly I want to share the Good news and help others find their way to God, through LOVE. ❤️
“Tree of Life”
Size: 4’w x 5’h
Material: String, feathers, burlap, glue and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Fall 2017
Genesis 2:8-9
I have always been absolutely in love with and drawn to trees. They are a magnificent living, breathing creations from God. They endure the hardest conditions and as they weather through their roots grow stronger. Just like us going through the hardships we encounter through life but also the celebrations. It all changes us! The tree of life symbolism has a long history, crossing many cultures. We all have shared roots linking us to our past with every struggle and every aspiration. Our roots grow deeper everyday with every experience. Either good or bad we are stretching our arms out to the sky. I believe we all have the burning desire within us to reach for the light. One simple yet strong message of staying connected and united resonates across many cultures despite our differences. Gods plan includes everybody! Everyone stands on the same ground before God. EVERYONE! Keep your feet planted on love and reach out to the world around you.
“The Moment”
Size: 4’w x 3’h
Materials: Sand, coffee grains, cloth, yarn, string and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: Easter 2018
Matthew 28:1-10
My primary focus is the great earthquake were God‘s angels come down with shafts of lightning blazing from him and his garments simmered like snow. He moved the stone. Jesus was not there in the tomb; He is risen indeed!
This is “The Moment” that changes everything. With the morning sun rising Mary Magdalene and the other woman are at their knees witnessing this world changing event that has taken place in front of them which they will be called to share. This is where the hope lies in all the stories that there is life everlasting through Jesus Christ our Savior.

I read chapters 27 and 28 in the book of Matthew several times before and while I worked on the piece. I kept thinking about all the agony and suffering Jesus went through in his final hours. I can’t even comprehend how horribly painful and disgraceful that form of punishment used in the ancient world really was. I found myself very emotional and my heart was breaking while reading chapter 27 the Crucifixion. Being a mother I cannot imagine going through what Mary had to endure. But then in chapter 28 the hope shines through for the whole world to see. We can be reminded of the hope we are given because of the resurrection.

The rings around the tomb and stone represent the earthquake. The lightning bolt represents Gods angel and the white cloth represents Jesus being alive. The white lilies are said to have grown from the tears that fell in Jesus final hours of sorrow and deep distress. Shaped like a trumpet to represent the joy of the resurrection rebirth and new life.

All the lines throughout the painting represent being one with everything God has created. I connected the earth to the sky and Jesus who is risen up high to the women down below. We are all created to bring that hope to those who feel dead or have lost their way. We are called to bring the message of hope, love and forgiveness to ALL people.

CR Display Fall 2018

Lutheran Church of Hope

West Des Moines, Iowa

 I painted this Sep 19, 2018 after I received a vision from God while laying in bed the night before.  I pray before I go to sleep and then I end up staying up late talking to God. I usually have a flood of visions for paintings.  God is asking me to be completely transparent and keep my heart completely open. 
     This cemetery represents several things to me. I wanted to honor all of the lives of my loved ones that have passed. They all have left footprints on my soul and they are missed deeply.  But I know I will see them again and that is something to celebrate. The opposite of death is not life, it is birth. 
     Each grave stone also stands for all my imperfections that I’m laying to rest.  Fear, insecurity, depression, alcoholism, anxiety, codependency, controlling, jealously, judgmental and the list goes on.  
     There is one empty grave for a few reasons.  The main reason is the best news I’ve ever heard…He Is Risen!  Also that Jesus has saved me!  Also represents the issues I am still dealing with but I’m finding freedom as I let the Holy Spirit work through me.  I pray and pray often!  This last year has been extremely transforming and exciting! 

“Fierce Love”
Recreated with wooden cross Fall 2018

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: Thou hast anointed my head with oil; My cup runneth over. Surely goodness and lovingkindness shall follow me all the days of my life; And I shall dwell in the house of Jehovah for ever.”
Psalms 23:4-6

I painted this piece almost 6 yrs ago for my boyfriend at the time who is now my husband. This painting is a surviving piece displaying the destruction my alcoholism has taken me. Looking back I’m not sure which direction this piece was going because there is a lot of darkness and some really frightening faces. Which makes sense seeing that my struggle with alcohol has been a very dark road leading to deep depression and many thoughts of suicide. I’m not sure where I would be without my unconditional loving and supportive family. They have all showed me the power of Gods love and I have witnessed a strong foundation of faith from them which i believe has kept that little light i had left inside me burning.

I have walked for so long in the valley with the shadows of death. Sadly giving up hope. Despite all the darkness i have experienced, i have had a lot of things to celebrate and lots of great times but without God the dark was slowly taking over. I lost many so called friends which was really revealing who truly loves me. I knew that Jesus loved me but I didn’t understand til recently the trusting in him part and that the spirit lives within me. I just desperately prayed that God would take away the chaos and pain so i could live my life. This painting sheds some light on where I was mentally at that time in my life. I had very little hope and dreams twisted in with a lot of depression and wanting to die. Without going into great detail I was literally consumed by alcohol everyday. I was becoming more and more depressed the deeper I went into the dark waters. I was drowning and i was holding on to the tiny bit of faith that i had. I was drinking very heavy for many years with most nights ending in black outs. So my memory is blurry but I remember enough and have dealt with the aftermath. I ruined pretty much every relationship i was fortunate enough to have.

I called alcohol the serpent in the bottle or liquid devil. It had such a stronghold on me I thought it was going to kill me without a doubt. I can get very mean and destructive after a certain point when drinking. My husband and I would end up fighting a lot and this painting took the brunt of it all. Thrown over the deck a couple times, kicked, punched and ripped. Seeing it sober crushed my heart everytime, I would never do that sober. It was hanging together only by strains just like me. Almost 4 perfect squares so I completed the tears and stored it away for I had no idea why until now. When I started painting for the Exodus display I layed them out and saw the cross. Immediately God told me to build a wooden cross bursting through this dark ragged disaster. My husband is a carpenter and he didn’t hesitate to help me create this vision that came from God. I’m not proud of any of this but I’m not ashamed. I know I am forgiven. God has been calling me to share the raw truth with others. But more excitingly God wants me to share the best part. Which was finally deciding to turn towards Him, open my heart, and my ears and follow Jesus. When I surrendered and turned to God there was light in my heart and i know now that God is the hope through all the darkness! Jesus has saved me!
“The Good Fight”
Materials: String, feathers, paper and acrylic paint on canvas
Created: October 2017
“The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.”
Exodus 14:14 KJV

I painted this in October 2017 for the benefit to raise money for my son’s dad’s funeral. John “BJ” Tomlinson of Waterloo, IA tragically died October 14, 2017 at the age of 37, from an accidental drug overdose of heroin and fentanyl. The Saturday he died he had a tattoo appointment to get this anatomically correct heart coming out of the coliseum he already had. That next day Sunday October 15, 2017 my son Logan, 21 yrs old at he time, was suppose to go see his dad for the first time in 5 years. They were finally going to start working on their relationship. I can’t even begin to describe the pain that day brought to us and to many others. To see my son fall to his knees with complete hopelessness, crying harder than i had ever before shattered my heart. A piece of my heart is locked in that moment forever. BJ also has another son, Mason 16 and a daughter, Amaya 11. They all have been deeply effected by his death.
BJ wanted to be a world changer regardless of all the mistakes and bad choices he made along the way. He is human like all of us. Imperfect! Bj was bullied when he was younger which pushed him into boxing. He was an unbelievably skilled boxer winning golden gloves and went undefeated in his career. People wanted to fight him even more because of this. BJ was in a constant state of defense everywhere he went. He was lost and hurting which lead him to drug use and street fights that would lead to a life in and out of prison. That’s where he found God in prison. He had the Bible almost memorized and would have long talks and debates with people he came across in prison and out on the streets. His fellow boxing mates would testify how he was a preacher but more importantly he was trying to help them take a different walk then he had taken. I wish he would’ve wrote more while he was in prison which was almost half his life.
BJ had an enormous and generous heart! He wanted to be on that straight path And follow Jesus more than anyone I’ve ever met. He loved his kids deeply and wanted to good for them. But his addiction was unbelievably strong plus the guilt and shame was extremely heavy. I believe his pride was what kept him from living free. He always felt like it was too late and he struggled in silence.
We could all be world changers, we were all born with it inside of us. Every day you walk through this life is an opportunity and a choice to turn towards God. Also a chance to help others turn around to face the light which leads to freedom. God knows our hearts, sees the people we interact with and how we choose to treat them. BJ had a mission in life and that was to turn people to God and he walked with some of the darkest lost souls that walk this earth, exactly what Jesus did! Bj effected so many lives while he was here on this earth. There was just something about him when he gave you his attention. His energy was intense spewing with passion and he made people feel special. He really loved and cared about so many. BJ stood as a giant and he walked this earth as a lion.
His son Mason ended up with this painting who felt connected to it immediately when he saw it. He wants people to know his dad was more than just an addict. He is so much more, BJ s a child of God. Thank you Mason for lending me this piece for the display. Please pray for Logan, Mason, Amya and BJ’s Mother Leeann and his sisters Tia and Kelly. There are so many people are hurting. Open your heart and be there for someone who needs help, that’s how you can serve!
Invite people to church!
“Faithless Landslide”
Materials: Acrylic paint on canvas
Created: 2007

I painted this in 2007, shortly after my oldest brother Eric Jacobs tragically died in a plane crash. My families life was turned upside down but the unshakeable faith my parents have carried us through. Eric was a huge spiritual and religious influence on me. We spent many nights up late talking about all the things he was learning. We would debate and get in some heated discussions. I would question him and challenge his beliefs. He was extremely passionate about Jesus and turning people to God. Especially the last couple years before he died.

I decided that I was going to try painting with no plan and just let it flow. Back then I didn’t realize I was trying to let the Holy Spirit flow through me. Another painting that reveals great detail of my past. When I look at it now I see a landslide and chaos. My life has felt like this painting for many years just out of control, slippery, and unstable with no direction but down. I have been a very selfish sinner enslaved by alcohol for almost 20years. The good news is the Holy Spirit has touched my heart and prepared me to share my walk. God does not make bad people good, He makes dead people walk.