We have already broached this topic, but last night I added some art to my body. I always have an internal debate if I should publicize my tattoos or keep them to myself until somebody questions them. For these new ones, I have decided to let you all in on what they are and most of what they mean to me.
Peace, be still. These are the words written several times in the New Testament, spoken by Jesus. My personal favorite is when he calmed the sea. With just words, he put mighty waves at rest and quoted roaring winds. [Mark 4:39]. My tattoos serve as a reminder to how much greater Jesus is than the world. Fig trees wither to, people live, entire oceans still just at his breath commands. Holy powerful. In the research I did for my ink, I also learned that he uses the exact same command to bind demons. Peace, be still. I very first started clinging to this phrase when I read a blog by some cool, leather wearing, circle glasses, rather hipster pastor. I think his name was Jonathon. My mom sent me a link to a tiny snippet of his writing and I loved it. He talked about the authority our Savior has and the authority He has given to us. He talked about telling our storms to be still. We can do that. Holy crazy! I can tell my storms to shut up, in the name of Jesus. I can tell the seeming tornados in my life to be bound, and they will. I can tell the de,ins that sometimes manifest in the precious tinies at viento fresco to be muzzled, and they will. Because God is crazy good. And because He added a little flavor to the fun, He also gave me [and you] the ability to do so.
It usually happens that I get an idea for a tattoo. I pray. I think. I plan it out. It has some sort of significance, but once it’s on my body, it’s story seems to grow tenfold. The original reason for these tattoos is on the above paragraph. A reminder of how big ,y God is, how powerful He is, and that I can tell the seas to still because of Him. But then it grew. I is also a reminder of the freedom I have in Jesus. I have a tendency to be someone who takes a drop of something that could potentially turn into anxiety, and created a raging ocean, filled with sharks that I’m drowning in. In simpler words, I had a bit of an anxiety issue. And there are times when that anxious beast still rears its head in my life, but I am being released from that. Walking away from anxiety and into “this can’t steal me joy”. So these tattoos are also a reminder of freedom from anxiety. Because anxiety can be crippling, it has the potential to melt you in your tracks. But no more, my Jesus calms storms, I don’t need to create them.
Another part. Sunday or Monday I was pondering what would become my future tattoos. I know I haven’t revealed them to you quite yet, but there is one on each of my arms. I have created for myself a shield of the peace of God. He is on my right and my left. I am now constantly in the midst of the stillness of Elohim. Now, that’s just amazing!
And the why. Why did I get these. I had been pondering them and planning them for a good few months in my head, however I could not find an accurate translation. The last three weeks, I started really searching diligently for the words I needed. I started having dreams of finding the translation, dreams of the tattoo shop, etc. My heart began deeply craving this tattoo, deeply and furiously. Not only did I find it, but I found so much more information. I connected with my family counselor, who is phenomenal in that, but even greater, he is a grand theologian. Each question I asked, he answered in detail and with ease.
So I had the translation, which was greatly exciting. In fact, I believe I got it Saturday. So, YAY! And I planned a bit more of the tattoo. And then I didn’t do anything. Sunday evening, at three o’clock in the morning I woke up. For an hour, I could not sleep. The only thing keeping me up was this tattoo. I just wanted to sleep, was it really this pressing? I woke up that morning and immediately texted a friend to get this ball rolling. She helped me get an appointment for Tuesday evening.
I have two tattoos already, and I know myself enough to understand that I should’ve been riddled with anxiety yesterday, especially as 3:30, then 4:30, than 5:30 rolled around. But nope. Not a lick of it. My whole self was beaming with excitement. I told myself I was going to keep the appointment between my closest people, but I feel as if in sheer joy, I told everyone.
I go to the shop, tattoos got printed, I sat in the chair. These tattoos aren’t huge, but the artist [who is phenomena] uses hand poke technique, so it takes some time. He is amazing. Each move is delicate and precise. And three hours later, my joy had multiplied a million times over. I was giddy with the fruition of the planning and the dreams.
So on my arms I have the words “be still”, once written in the original bible Greek. The Greek is to specify that this is the powerful wave-taming “be still”, not the Hebrew one which reminds us “be still and know”. And then, written once in English on the other arm, because this is the language I know and speak.
This brings my count from two up to four. I am so in love with the artwork that was done and the deep significance these carry for me.
Without further ado, tattoos three and four: