I was born dead.
Dead in my sins

And so were you!
It is the human condition.

David said:

For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.
Surely I was sinful at birth,
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
Psalm 51: 3-6

I am no longer dead!

I LIVE...in Him.

Because He gave....
His life for mine.

On Calvary.

As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins,  in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.  All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath.  But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,  made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.  And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,  in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.  For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—  not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s handiwork,created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

We have just celebrated Easter.
Many of you designed, created and sold wonderful
items to inspire and decorate for this 
most wonderful holiday.
Good works.
The art of spreading the gospel.

Praying that the meaning of Easter stays with us all the way through to next year.

He truly did lay down His life.
His Life...For Mine.

Scripture from Bible Gateway
and Devotion by Becky at Good Neighbors Candle

Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen.  And they said among themselves, "Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?"  But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away - for it was very large.  And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed.

But he said to them, "Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified.  He is risen!  He is not here.  See the place where they laid Him.  Mark 16:2-6 NKJV

Have a blessed Easter - Resurrection Sunday!

Take a look at the CAST Shop of the Week, Petzolutions. This shop is full of all sorts of natural health care products for your pets.  You will find balms, sprays, powders, conditioners and more.  Enjoy browsing. 

Pet Solid Shampoo - Rose, Aloe & Oatmeal

Please note that the only way to be featured as the CAST Shop of the Week is to tag your shop items "castteam" on Etsy and to not hide your teams in your Etsy profile. You will also have to have at least 12 items to feature. Those are the ways that I find great CAST shops to feature each week. 

CAST Members: If you have a minute or two, please feel free to favorite ♥ this shop or promote it on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or other social media.  Thanks!

by Sue of SueRunyonDesigns
It is our pleasure to introduce Jackie of WillowofWonder as this week's Featured Artist. Jackie creates hand-drawn artwork from her home in Southern California.

Giveaway: Jackie has graciously offered a free 8x10 Scripture print from her shop . To enter to win, please visit her shop, pick your favorite, and come back to tell us what it is. Please remember that commenting alone won't get you entered. Leave your email address so we can more easily reach you. Winner will be picked using random.org.
make a joyful noise unto the Lord Scripture art print by willowofwonder
Make a Joyful Noise Scripture Art Print

Introduction to you: 

My name is Jackie Williams. My shop is willow of wonder. The name was born out of my love of whimsical things. I like willow trees and a google search revealed to me that in Christian art the willow represents the gospel. So it's really gospel of wonder, which seemed perfect.
Before having kids I was a television reporter and producer. I actually still freelance as a producer. I think the art of starting with an idea and turning it into something has always been a passion for me, in whatever form.

But this willow of wonder adventure taps into the child-like free side of me. I still love rainbows and unicorns, butterflies, and wee little forest mice (in pictures only of course). Even my daughters laugh at how excited I get over miniature gardens or sweet little vintage trinkets.

I love the ocean, mountains, gardens, and flowers, hiking, and indoor cycling. I like tea parties, reading, and praise music. My women prayer warrior friends are so special to me, as is my family, but most of all Jesus. He's my everything. And I'm on this journey of accepting just how far and deep and wide His love is. 

Super Girl Power of the Holy Spirit Scripture Artwork by willowofwonder
Super Girl Power of the Scripture Artwork

How did you get your start on Etsy?

Art and creating have always been therapeutic for me. In 2009 I was diagnosed with lupus. I had times when it was so bad I couldn't even hold a pencil because my joints hurt so much. There were some very dark days, but as the disease began to go into remission I felt this prompting to draw. I started by making the dolphin girl as a baptism gift for a pastor friend's daughter. And it was with that drawing that I realized I might be able to offer something that wasn't really out there. So that is how willow of wonder was born. I opened the shop a little before Christmas in 2010. It honestly was a forgotten childhood dream tucked away to one day be an artist. Without ever having studied art I don't quite own the word artist yet. My girls so sweetly say I'm the best artist they know. And I fight telling them oh no I'm not. Because to them I am. And I believe Jesus sees us all as artists in our own way.

I did my first craft fair last spring and am doing three this spring. They're a lot of work, but oh so fun. It felt again like I was tapping into those childhood memories of playing store. Only it was real. I love meeting people and sharing my love for putting scripture all over our homes. I do mean all over, by the way. I recently listed two huge columns from "In the Mirror of God's word I See…." all across a double mirrored closet door in my office. I LOVE having it all there in front of me.

Being able to hear the stories of how people are touched by my art, or who they are sending a piece to and why has been the biggest blessing and warms my heart every single time. The most amazing inspiration and reason to keep on doing it is when a missionary had the warrior girl printed onto fabric and made into pillows for a group of Indian girls as a present for finishing a bible study based on the Chronicles of Narnia.

I love doing custom work for people and am just about to begin expanding into that more formally. 

What does a typical day look like for you?

My days are so different than I thought they'd be. I had been a homeschooling mama, but because of a series of life circumstances I've had to put my kids in school. They're 12, 9, and 7. I wake around 5:30 or 6:00 to have quiet time alone. One daughter is off by seven to her carpool pick up. Then the next two are at eight and 8:30. I seem to be involved in some kind of group almost every morning. I have had the blessing of being able to take Chelsea Cameron (Kirk Cameron's wife's) bible study on parenting and families this year. It has been so amazing. That's on Monday. Tuesday I do my Community Bible Study, Wednesday is another group at my church and working in my first grader's class. Thursday and Fridays I make appointments and get housework as well as etsy orders done. The time while they are in school actually goes so fast. I also try to squeeze in a few days to spin (indoor cycling). I always say if I don't make time to study the word, spin, and create I start to get a little off kilter. It keeps me sane and happy. Truly. Once all the pick ups happen from school we hang out, do homework, have dinner, and it's time to get ready for bed. I always, always read with my kids before bed. I love it as much as them. We've been reading all of the American Girl series lately. Can I confess I cry at least once in each series. And again my girls laugh at me, there she goes again. What can I say, I'm a total sap. Sad tears, happy tears. I can't help it. Sometimes things are so beautiful, so moving, so empowering I'm just moved to tears.

If you could be anywhere in the world for one day, where would it be?

If I could be anywhere in the world for a day I think I'd love to go to the South of France. I have yet to go, but my best friend (we met in the first grade) says it's so us. We have a little dream for a girl trip in a few years for a big birthday. The lavender, the linens, the cheese, the countryside. Oh sigh. Just imagining it is so dreamy.
Willow of Wonder Packaging

What is your favorite Bible verse?

My favorite verse is Roman 15:13. "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."
Trust in the Lord Scripture Art Print
Trust in the Lord Scripture Art Print

What is your favorite Etsy listing to feature? 

I really love the Trust in the Lord print with the children pushing along the wagon. It and the Make A Joyful Noise print. It was originally a life size mural I painted in my children's preschool music room. It was something I was nervous to take on, but was so amazing to tackle and see come to life. I'm very into challenging myself. Sometimes I can get a little frozen when I think too much. It's taken years, but I've learned to just roll up your sleeves and try. And if you fail it's ok. You're learning and you can try again.

Where else can we find you on the Internet?

I have attended church most of my life and it wasn’t until I went to a healing and deliverance place that I even knew I had a territorial boundary and it was my responsibility to protect it. 

Our territory is anything that belongs to us.  This goes beyond our house, personal belongings, automobiles, and children which we profusely protect.  We lock doors, put alarms on our homes and protect our children from danger.  We feel violated if something is stolen or we’re hurt. 

Our territory is also our personality, sexuality, time,  our freedom of choice and much more.  God might give us commands, but he still gives the freedom of choice to obey or disobey the command. If he didn’t let us choose then everyone would love everyone all the time. That would make us God’s puppets. One thing we don’t have control over is the consequence for our actions. Gal. 6:7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap

With the age of internet and Iphones our territories are getting violated more than ever. One Sunday our pastor put on his old work uniform as an illustration.  During the message a  lady in the congregation took a picture of him with her Iphone.  This started him and embarrassed him. She did not ask his permission to take the picture.

I have found that on prayer chains in church’s people want to have more information than was given. Another problem is people might be too quick to give advice instead of just praying.  

Jesus said  in Matthew 7: Ask and it will be given to you, seek, and you will find; knock and the door will be opened.   He wants us to ask to receive his blessings. 


My husband and I are on the road a lot. Several years ago within and few weeks we had 3 very close accidents.  We knew we weren’t praying for God’s safety on the road. Since we have started to ask for God’s protection we’ve had smooth driving.  We are to follow Jesus.  He wants us to ask Him for blessings therefore we should ask others for permission first. 

At one of my previous church’s there were two sister-in-laws that I tried to be friends with.  I did not ask if I could be there friend I just started to hang out with them.  God gave me a vision.  We had gone to Dominica Republic for the first time and I noticed that the people would build a concrete block wall around their property line.  In the vision I saw this family surrounded by concrete block wall.  There was a gate to go through, but I was trying to jump over the block wall, instead of knocking on the gate.  God showed me I was trying to break in where I hadn’t been invited.  

The thief doesn’t use a gate but breaks in and steal the sheep. John 10: 9-10 I am the door, if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.;  The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life abundantly.  

 When we give advice, ask for more details or tell someone what to do instead of asking we are breaking in like a thief and stealing a little piece of their territory.

I pray that we will learn to respect other people and ask permission first.

Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.
Luke 24:45-48 (NIV)

As Christians around the world look forward to the celebration of Easter next week, I was reminded of these verses in the last chapter of Luke.  These short verses summarise the gospel message so neatly: Jesus, the saviour, died to take the punishment we deserved, he rose again and, therefore, we can turn to God in repentance and receive forgiveness and salvation.  Let us praise God for the mercy and grace He has shown to us!  And let us seek to share this beautiful message to others and be witnesses of God's amazing power and love.

Ever need to make a quick appetizer and you’re not quite sure what to make? Time is precious but you don’t just want to clunk down a bowl of chips on the table, right?

This week I made a new batch of jam, Vanilla Pear Jam to be exact. I wanted a way to showcase it for potential buyers and needed a recipe, preferably one that was quick and easy. I think I came up with one that can add a touch of elegance to any buffet table or can be served on the coffee table and shared amongst friends. Experiment with different types of jam to find a flavor that suits you. Enjoy!

Brie with Vanilla Pear Jam

2 tbsp. vanilla pear jam or jam of your choice
1 8 oz. round of Brie
5 wheat crackers (I used Wheat Thins)
¼ c. walnut halves
1 ½ tsp. melted butter

Warm up jam in the microwave for a few seconds and brush or pour over cheese round. Process 5 crackers with the walnuts in a food processor or crush by hand. Combine crushed cracker/walnut mixture with melted butter then press onto jam covered Brie. Serve with additional crackers. Makes about 8 servings

by Lorrie of WitsEndDesign