On February 5, 2022 the first workshop of Psalms 102 Ministries began. It is being held at River Room Church, 4524 Wishart Road, Virginia Beach, VA every 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month at 3pm. It is being led by myself and Wendi Nixon. Both of us are experienced mental health care providers. I will lead the first Saturday and Wendi will lead the 3rd.
Psalm 102 Ministries is a ministry to educate the church on how to best respond to people with mental health challenges, and we will also be interceding for our loved ones or others who are struggling with mental health challenges, afflictions, or addictions, etc.
This first workshop is called, “Preparing the Heart.”
In this video I explain how the ministry came about; share a little of my testimony; briefly explain some statistics and problems with mental health challenges in our society; give both a biological/medical and spiritual explanation of the mental suffering; and raise your faith to believe in healing and deliverance for your loved one and family.
The video just shows the teaching, but doesn’t include the soaking or the art activity. Those of you who are watching and want to get a fuller experience can listen to the soaking music on your own. The links will be below. I played soaking music to meditate on related to receiving from God in this area. This can’t be show on you tube during the filming.
This is the song we soaked to. Its called, “Too Good to Not Believe” by Cody Carnes. It’s a beautiful song which will raise your faith. Listen closely to the words!
Preparing the Heart art activity:
Side note: If you haven’t done so already, I recommend you watch the video first followed by the soaking to the Cody Carnes song to get a fuller experience before starting the art activity.
Following the soaking, your faith can be activated to receive by creating and decorating a heart with the loved one’s name that you want to intercede for.
Cardboard or foam heart in any size, but we used approximately 9×8 inches. I used something to trace onto my foam board so I could get a bunch of same sized hearts. The traceable heart can be made by first folding a regular thin piece of paper in half and drawing a half heart on it extending from the folded edge. Then cut on the line of your half heart drawing and open your paper so it makes a full heart. This is the best way to get it even. You could also trace a wooden heart decoration or candy box onto your foam or cardboard instead of using a drawn heart on a piece of paper. Just keep in mind that you want your heart to be big enough to add scriptures, words, and decorations to it. Then once you have your heart traced onto your foam piece cut it out. I recommend using an exacto knife. You can get the foam board at the Dollar Tree where the posters usually are. Walmart should have it too, or you could cut out some cardboard from a box you have laying around the house.
Words, phrases, and scriptures: You can look through magazines and cut out words, phrases, or pictures that are meaningful; or you can print out words or scriptures you type up or copy and paste; or you could print out word clouds that you find on Google that relate to the topic of healing, salvation, or deliverance, or whatever else applies. If you don’t have access to a color printer you can print it out in black ink and color it yourself. You also literally can hand write out your words and scriptures onto separate pieces of paper to cut out and glue onto your heart or directly write onto your heart. You can also include picture art of scriptures. I had a little bit of everything prepared.
Decorations and embellishments: These are the decorations such as stickers, gems, collectibles, letters, beads, ribbons, yarns, buttons, washi tape, etc etc. Most all of the decorations I got were from the Dollar Tree. They have a nice craft section with all kinds of stickers, gems, butterflies, etc. I have been collecting a little bit at a time. They even have washi tape there.
Marking materials: permanent markers, geli pens, painters pens, fabric paint, etc. Of course this can be found at any craft store, but you can also find such items at the Dollar Tree or Walmart. Regular markers or colored pencils or crayons even will work, too, I just think you will have better results with the permanent markers and you can paint over them, too, because they are water proof. Also the gel pens mark well on a variety of surfaces. Fabric paint should be used last if you do use it because it takes awhile to dry. I like the clear white crystals fabric paints which allow you to make a clear, shiny, glittery glaze over many items. Keep in mind the thicker the fabric paint is after applying the longer it will take to dry; so if you write a word, for example, in fabric paint it could take several hours to dry. Also, I would only try to use it for large print or writing, nothing fine print or you might be disappointed. You want to use it last so you do not accidentally smear it while continuing to work.
Glue/adhesives: modge podge, regular craft glue, Elmer’s, even generic school glue will work. You probably only need one kind although you could use a craft glue for heavier items and modge podge or Elmer’s for lighter items, but honestly it all should work as long as what you’re gluing is not too heavy. I preferred modge podge for this project because it’s versatile, and you can get it in glossy or matt. Again any of these glues can be found at any craft store, Walmart, or Dollar Tree.
Craft paper/scap-booking paper/watercolor paper: You can use what you have on hand or what you can afford to buy. I liked to use scrap-booking paper glued onto of the heart before adding the other items, but its not necessary. You could also use watercolor paper and just paint it. I used some scrap watercolor paper which I painted for some of my words. The scrap booking paper can be found at Walmart, Michael’s or most craft stores. It could cost anywhere between $5-25 depending on the type of paper or how much is in the booklet. You can buy individual pieces at Michael’s for about a $1 if you don’t want to buy a whole pack. I did both sides of my heart, but that’s not necessary either.
Watercolor paints are optional. I used them to paint over words I wrote myself in permanent markers.
Directions: First ask God who you should make the art for. You may have more than one loved one who needs prayer and intercession. It is possible to combine several loved ones into one heart, but it might be easier to focus on one person at a time; then you could make it more specific to them. It just depends on your needs and situation. Just ask God. If there is more then one person you want to intercede for you could make them another heart or just focus on the next person on the next project. Try not to overwhelm yourself. God is good and gracious and not a slave master. This isn’t supposed to be hard or stressful, but fun! We are co-laboring with God! Instead of just making a decree or declaration with our mouth, we are making a decree with our heart art and it is very powerful to do that. You will feel your whole body, heart, and soul come into alignment with this task and even both sides of your brain! You will also probably feel the Holy Spirit minister to you personally while you’re making the art, and He may bring up emotions, awareness, revelation, or inner healing to you about your particular situation with your loved one.
We actually did the art while soaking to the music below. It is Julie True and it is one hour of soaking music starting with Heaven’s Embrace song. You could try it or play something else you love. I think the soaking music really helps you get into a good head space to receive and hear from God and co-labor with Him.
Side note: If there are things distracting you at the moment or if you are being pulled into many different directions consider waiting to do this part until your time can be uninterrupted with God. Depending on your own art style, it could take between 1-2 hours, maybe even 3 if you go over the top! At least allow yourself a 1 hour block that’s not interrupted. You can always finish touching it up later even with the distractions. Just give yourself one hour for you and God to be alone with this and God to minister to you. I think you will benefit more that way.
Next ask God for a word/s or scripture/s for this person. I used the scripture as a centerpiece for my heart art. God might suggest several scriptures or several words.
The idea is to decorate the heart with all your supplies, words, and scriptures while praying and declaring what you want for your loved one.
The first thing I recommend you do is trace your heart on your scrap-booking paper if you’re going to use it. Then cut it out and glue it down on to your heart. As I said before you could glue down watercolor paper as well. Honestly, you could skip this part too if you wanted. I just personally like the look of it better with the decorative paper glued down first.
I had a rough edge around my heart from not using the exact knife perfectly so I put washi tape around my edges over both sides. No one in my workshop did that, and all their hearts looked nice, so its up to you.
Although you could start immediately gluing or writing words on your heart, I recommend that you gather all the words and decorations that you want first. Cut out your words or prepare them first on separate sheets of paper which you can cut out and glue down. If you wait to glue items down you could try different arrangements first to see what you like best or what will fit where.
So now you will just be arranging the words, phrases, scriptures, and decorations in ways you find pleasing and gluing them down onto your heart. Try to stay in communication with God. Keep an open dialog with God about what you want for this loved one while you’re creating and what God wants for this person, and even your relationship with this person. As you create your words, scriptures, and phrases pray these things into existence over your loved one!!! Let God lead you in the art and minister to you while you’re creating. You might be surprised to find that God does minister to you. Many people in the workshop found that the activity brought some inner healing and revelation to them as well.
When you get done you can study it to see what you notice. Does anything stand out to you? Did God show you anything? How did you feel? You may even consider journaling your response to this activity.
Here are some examples and pictures from our workshop! We only had 4 people come to our first one.